Friday, December 14, 2012

Open Letter to the Dickheads of Apple Canada

"Dear Apple Canada

Re Customer Service Apple Store Employees who work at Square One, Mississauga

I am writing to tell you about the atrocious service my mother received on - not one but - two occasions at your store. Both times an appointment was made and both times you acted like fools to an older woman.

Let me explain the problem:
In 2008, you sold me an iPhone 3GS and the thing worked great. I used it for two years and then bought something better. I stored the iPhone in a clean, dry drawer in its original packaging just in case any one in my life wanted a phone.

A short time later such an occasion arose. Someone in my world did need the phone and I took it out of its box to discover it was now half an inch thicker than it used to be. I squeezed but the panels would not go back together. Also, the screen was broken. I plugged it in but I couldn’t get it to work. I made an appointment with the inappropriately named “Genius Bar” and my mother went to inquire about what had happened to the little phone.

The service man glanced at the phone and mumbled that the battery had leaked and that a new phone would cost $170. This was hardly a good answer for a hardware issue of this magnitude, but it was streets ahead of what happened next.

My mother went home and explained what had been told to her. The battery leaked and for a discount we could get a new phone. “A NEW phone?”, I asked. It would mean an iPhone 5, if so I would be willing to go for it. So, my mother made a second appointment to clarify and returned to The Apple Store on Monday December 3, 2012 and spoke with M___.

The first thing that happened was EVASION. No one seemed interested in helping a little 68-year-old woman. Even the person who was assigned to her seemed to be trying to get away from her. He re-iterated the piece about how the battery had leaked and a new phone would cost some money. “A NEW phone?” she inquired. No, it turns he meant a new 3GS phone.

Dear Reader, let me ask you something: Would you pay actual money for a phone that was already two generations behind, especially if the phone you had from the company had a hardware issue so massive it was unfixable after only two years?

Blinking away tears of frustration, my mother asked the man to call me at work to explain it to me. With a little a broken phone in her hand this beast of a service man bellowed down at my mother “You certainly can’t use mine! Don’t you have a phone?”

What is the correct answer here?
Yes, I have a phone and it’s broken. You are looking right at it, dumbass.
Or, we are standing in a telephone STORE – asshole! – and your infuriating questions are getting on my nerves.

Imagine what kind of business you would be if that man had instead said: “Yes, of course, you can use my phone/the store’s phone, let’s find a quiet area so we can make that call together.”

The man who spoke to me was ultra-defensive. I wanted to clarify that a new phone should be the latest model, not a phone they are currently giving away for free at local phone retailers countrywide. The man then changed tacks and decided that blaming me for the battery leaking was the best course of action. He accused me of over-charging the battery. I asked him how long a battery should be charged. He told me “until 80% percent full”. Well, dear Reader, here’s the problem: The 3GS does not offer the percentage charging feature. I can’t tell 80% by looking at a picture of a green battery on the screen.

It may be important at this juncture to remember that if he was really a genius, he wouldn’t be working retail.

Apple, you have completely disappointed me. I most certainly did not overcharge the battery. I have even heard the very idea of “over-charging” the battery to be considered ridiculous by those in the know. I paid good money for the 3GS, it should have been useful to me for as many years as needed. Faced with a hardware issue like this, you should be tripping over yourself to rectify it to my satisfaction. Your employees behaviour was ageist, discriminatory against women and undermining to those who are not technically proficient. You should be ashamed of yourselves.

I won’t be buying another one of your products."

UPDATE: Aaaaand that is pretty close to the letter I wrote to Apple Canada complaining about the hardware failure and about atrocious service. But wait, the story gets better.

A “manager” of the Apple store phoned me. Here’s how the conversation played out.

He introduced himself, he then proceeded to paraphrase parts of my letter but getting key points of it incorrect – like: it was me who went into the store (Incorrect! The correct answer is: it was my mother.) I had to re-explain that to him.

He was keen to skip over the salient details and wanted to outline what a money-hungry bitch I was by saying that I was looking for a new phone at no cost. I re-explained that No, I initially wanted to know how the device could be fixed so I could give it away as a good deed, seeing as how I'm super-rich and all. His staff were the ones who advised that it would need to be replaced. He then explained that it wasn’t that I had overcharged the battery; it was that I had not charged it enough, and caused the battery to leak.

But he didn’t even know what kind of battery was in an iPhone. He told me “I can’t tell you, I’m not a technician”.  When I asked to speak to one, I was shot down.


Well, Dear Reader, I have done a little research of my own online and it appears that the correct answer is a lithium ion battery. These can not leak. When I hit the incompetent “manager” with this little gem he countered – like the great legal mind he is – with,

Yes, that’s right, they can’t leak but they can expand. I learned this in the US”, like it was a known fact and that learning something in the US gives it more validity. Also, he just contradicted himself for the second time. We are not building trust, Asshole.

Put the IkeaMonkey on the line.

Then he says, “And you should really take the battery out, but unfortunately the iPhone does not give you that opportunity.”

So, Asshole, you are agreeing with me. This is a hardware failure, a design flaw. SOMETHING YOU NEED TO REPLACE.

But no, he just kept yammering in a fake British accent like he had all the time in the world, which doesn’t surprise me given Apple stock has dropped 40% in the last 12 months.

So, Dear Reader, if you are smart, you will avoid Apple Canada at all costs. It appears that their moment in the sun has passed and what happened to Blackberry will soon happen to Apple. Imagine - if you will - all those little resumes of the former employees and our most-learned friend the “manager”, and the resumes will all say the same thing “I used to work at the Genius Bar. And now I am unemployed”.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

The Time I Met the Virgin Mary

Please refer to The Bridal Shower (May 2009) for a more adequate preamble…

I hated Christmas. I hated it because I had no family. Because I hated being cold. Because the spending was stressful, the receiving was never good enough, and the religious aspect was still far in my future. Not quite as near as my realization about being heavily sedated on whiskey might make it better but then again, I hated afternoon hangovers. Then I got used to them.

When they bought a new house deep in the Pleasantville suburbs, they were slow to invite us over. They wanted to forget they had ever lived in a townhouse, ever lived without a garage. The house had a foyer with cathedral ceilings and an unfinished basement. At least in the townhouse they had a finished basement; a good location for all the porn the father was downloading from the internet and hiding in the ceiling. In the new house the computer stayed in the living room. The expectation was they entered the new house and they were new people, washed clean of us and their old life. But the same problems persisted; a deeply held misunderstanding that everyone else had it better. A festering insecurity that was not relieved by a conscious understanding of the Bible, exacerbated by suddenly being surrounded by other Pleasantville neighbors and all their ideas about how to improve their current situation. The new house was not the promised finish line but the introduction to a much faster race. Suddenly, they began to call again. We did not have it better than them and that was relaxing. They could be “themselves” whatever the hell that was. They called when they felt most alone, they called at Christmas.

They welcomed us back with toothy smiles and thousand yard stares. They had to keep a renter to cover the mortgage payments. They had bought leather furniture, a new boat, a car for the daughter and sports equipment for the son. But the son was in prison on violations of his probation. He was turned in by his girlfriend. His pregnant-for-the-second-time girlfriend. The sports equipment was returned to the store and exchanged for toys for their first grandchild. They screamed bloody murder that they wanted a DNA test while the poor girl was pregnant but fell quickly silent once the precious child was born. It did not matter. One look at that boy and I knew he was his father’s son. They were all a bunch of lunatics.

We must have looked funny in our finest silk and fur coats standing in their empty house. After all we were still deeply middle-class, not the working poor. We had money for many things, because we had not sold our souls for greater square-footage. Life is transactional, an endless series of checks and balances. You play the cards you are dealt as carefully as you can and good things happen. Grasping at material affectation is as effective as grasping at God. You come away with empty hands.

They provided an over-cooked turkey and some sugar drinks because alcohol was not allowed in the home. We talked a little. The pregnant girlfriend was hysterically happy to see me. She set her child down on the beautiful thick carpet and ran to my side. She wanted to talk about girly things and my job, my school work, if I wanted to hang sometime after church. She even said a prayer at the table thanking God that I was spending time with her. It was charmingly-innocently-creepy and deeply manipulative. This girl was forever bound by her children to this lunatic family and she was suddenly realizing how poorly she had played her hand. The prayer was a thinly-veiled insult to her mother-in-law because she did not thank her at all.

As the evening drew to a close, I became aware of an unspoken shift of energy in the room. This was not uncommon. The father controlled the family using some sort of code word telepathy. He never seemed to speak and yet his daughter could read his intention. This time she did not want to do what he was asking. She was disobeying. The mother, always a beat behind, brayed a question. What the mother lacked in speed she made up for in brute force, underscoring the father’s direction and it was decided. The girlfriend was quietly vibrating with excitement beside me when the announcement was finally made: We would drive to the prison so that the girlfriend could visit with the brother briefly before visitation was over.

Imagine this: the empty dark and snowy barrens of rural Canada on Christmas Eve.

Out we went the three of us in the night toward the prison. The car took a long time to heat up and the wind-swept parking lot was only half full. We could not enter the lobby without being searched so the sister and I stayed in the car while the girlfriend ran in to line up. There were many young women roaming around inside waiting their turn to be escorted to the visitors’ area. The sister and I listened to the radio and made awkward conversation, trying to pretend we were not where we were, not doing what we were doing, that is hadn’t come to this. We wanted to pretend that we were nothing like these girls. Stupid fools waiting for common criminals who would beat them as soon as they got out, violating their probation and starting the process over again, season after season.

Christmas, be damned!

There was some disturbance in the lobby; the silhouettes began to move more quickly. Visitation was ending. A short time later the girlfriend ran back to the car. She opened the door of the car but did not get in. “Hi, guys” she said, like she didn’t fucking know us. We stared back in stony silence. She was a lunatic. “Can you give this girl a ride to the bus terminal?” We continued to stare quietly and from out behind her stepped what looked to be a beautiful child. A child in a giant winter coat. No, the coat was fine. It was the girl that looked funny. She was heavily pregnant. I looked at the sister with wide eyes and we both knew what the other was thinking: “Is there any room at the inn?”

The girls got in the back and immediately the child bride’s cell phone rang. “Ya,” she said softly.”Ya…ya…I love you too”. Someone inside the prison was wondering if she had got a ride all right. We asked her how she got there in the first place and she said simply “The bus” and stared out the window into the blackness. The terminal was miles away so we just left it at that until we reached it. She got out and made to stand inside the shelter. She was the only one there. It seem like she was standing in the only light for as far as the eye could see. I didn’t want to leave her there but she didn’t give us a choice and pretty soon another person shuffled under the light with her.

We drove back in silence. The energy was deep and thick like a slow moving river, a sense of capability for the future, of calm.

I don’t hate Christmas anymore.

Friday, August 10, 2012

In Praise of Being Single

Do I really mean this?

I used to be the type who saw a hundred guys at a party, 10 would talk to me, 5 would flirt with me, one might ask for my number and I would sarcastically insult them all for the asshole in the corner who ignored me. Then I would chase him. When I wasn’t chasing him, I would dominate conversations with long tearful minute-by-minute explanations of fantasy relationships. The man had no idea I felt this way, he had no idea why I was acting so weird, and just to close the circle of insanity, I had no idea that I was acting weird.

I never understood why my friends liked the guys they did. They were boring; they would stick around for 6 months to a year doing idiot things like going to the movies, eating meals together (EW!) and building an actual relationship. They celebrated birthdays and Christmas together. They bought each other presents and answered each other’s phone calls. Then the girl would cheat (he was boring, remember) or the guy would and they would break up; regardless of how, it always went down the same way. Compared to my fantasy relationships which lasted about the same amount of time, nothing really seemed out of the ordinary. Except that I did NOT have to go through the pain of loss. I was always going through a fake loss, of something I never had, an unrequited love. I was doing a parallel market version of the real thing. For a smart girl, this is quite literally KHA-RAY-ZEE.

Then the hammer fell. Like the song says, “Nobody lives without Love”. I met him. I met the real deal. Everything in my world pulsed with the knowing that this was The One. Other people noticed us; I wasn’t kidding this time. This guy showed up to events as a couple (late and drunk). He (never) answered the phone when I called. He (never) listened carefully to how I felt and (never) made (any real) attempts to change. But he told me he would take care of me. He told me I was the best he ever had. He constantly asked me for money. For the first time in my life I was in the worst relationship of my life. In short, he was crazy like me and left me flat on my ass. Good for both of us, I guess.

Let me digress…Many years ago, I was asked to be a bridesmaid by two different girls. Through no fault of my own, neither relationship made it to the altar. After that, I became a bridesmaid biohazard. I was never asked to be in another wedding again. In the same way, I never had another deep relationship after the last first worst one. Because I wanted to change and change I did, but the world has not changed with me. How things happen to us is a truly series of unremarkable events that coalesce into a story only at the end to create our personal mythologies. No one who wins the lottery can say anything more than “I was just lucky”. The person who doesn’t win can at least say “At least I played”. I am not winning, but I am still playing. True change is glacially slow and so it has been as I have tried to change my relationships. The men and women I still know, know me for a being a train wreck so I have to meet new friends. Then I have to make a good impression. Then I have to repeat the process until trust is built. Then I wait patiently to see if they invite me anywhere, if these good impressions were enough to convince them I am a worthy peer and if they are currently accepting new applicants at this late date. I can see why I choose to be an asshole and chase assholes. It is way easier than being present. You see, I broke my own heart. I manifested this reality.

Yes, I really mean this.

As a single person, I am completely confident that I am not inflicting chaos in anyone’s life. This is a relief. It’s one less thing I need to pray for forgiveness about every week. I am also not wasting anyone’s time. As I become more compassionate, I realize how much of each other’s time we are wasting. I am also really glad I am not making any really expensive furniture or home-ownership choices right now. The market is bad and there is uncertainty in the future. I feel so fragile that I would not be able to endure the stress of making a grand decision right now or having to justify it to doubting relatives.

I am glad I am single because I do not want to deal with a mother-in-law right now. If one more domineering old crone opens her mouth near me there will be blood.

I am glad I am single so I do not have to pretend to be into sports (except baseball or football). I like sitting in bleachers drinking beer and screaming – but truthfully a game does not have to be playing for me to still enjoy those things together. Also, in cemeteries.
I am glad I am single so I do not have to describe myself as “athletic”. My mother has no conscious understanding of why today’s man wants a girl who plays the same sports as he does. When my mother was courting, men had activities that they did with other men. I often wonder why this has changed.

I am glad I am single for the lack of mess, the silence, the hours dedicated to nothing, museum visits, nothing, reading, nothing, and going for high tea at local hotels. Things are where I left them. My bed is always clean. I lay my cat on a little tea towel in front of the window and pretend he has spent the day at the beach when I get home. I can dream and play without judgment.

I am glad I am single so I can pretend that I will still somehow marry Harry.

I am glad I am single because I do not have to take anything seriously. Young women are so fucking serious. Twice as serious if she is trying to drag him down the aisle and three times as serious if she is trying to get pregnant. I do not have wrinkles or gray hair yet. I still drink on Thursday nights with my co-workers to stave off The Serious.

I am glad I am single so I do not have to text arguments about drinking with my co-workers.

I am glad I am single so I do not have to talk about men with other wives. New hipster wives never know if they are doing it right. They brag about how they control their men, or have long conversations about the most expensive appliances or “stoneware”. I recently sat at a restaurant listening to a woman describe in detail the exact circumstances that have to occur to have her husband sleep in the couch. When I say I am single, they stop abruptly and stare for a moment. They sometimes say “Aw” softly under their breath and the ever so carefully turn their bodies away from me so that I am excluded from the conversation. Cocktail parties are a ritual blessing/curse; I have been brought to the font of desirability and been found unworthy.

I am glad I am single so I do not have to go to dinner parties.

I am glad I am single so I do not have to sit in restaurants staring at my boyfriend silently. I am glad I am not the dining dead.

I am glad I am single in solidarity to every single women I have ever known who has been divorced by her husband when her children were small. This is a special kind of hell and I have witnessed it so many times that it makes marriage look like a joke. This coupled with celebrity micro-marriages makes marriage look like a farce played upon the public to sell magazines. Who could take a relationship seriously anymore? Who is modeling a healthy marriage today?

And yes, I really mean this, too.

A few days ago my phone rang...After almost 5 years from the day we met, two tours of duty in Afghanistan, four provinces and a lifetime of change, my phone rang with a familiar voice at the other end. But here’s the thing; I was all gone. There are never enough words to describe true love, and there are never enough to describe the feeling that is left when you no longer feel it. Was I dead? Mildly disgusted? Upset, offended? Happy; relieved? No, none of these things. I wasn’t even surprised. The truth is, other than being an over-dramatic train wreck; he didn’t know the first thing about me. Nor I him. It was like talking to a stranger. It was exactly like talking to an old man stranger. It was … brief. It was a series of declarative sentences wrapped in silences. There were no questions. There was only the past, no present and no hope of future. It left me feeling empty and distracted … did I order a white Russian or a white wine? I could not remember. I asked for the second time to delete my number, to not contact me again, that I had moved on with someone else. This isn’t true, of course, but I wanted to be kind to him and easy on myself. My future can not include someone who remembers me from before. He also hasn’t changed. Dropping out of the sky is not friendly behavior. It’s the same overdramatic bullshit that would have sent me into a tailspin five years ago and get him the reaction he wanted. He used me then and he is trying to use me now. I can’t control it, I’m not changing my number but one of these times will be the last time.

And I am glad I am single so that I never have to endure that kind of pain again.

Friday, August 3, 2012

The Time I Tried To Rush A Sorority

Girl Power!

I applied to a really good university. In fact, it was an Ivy League college. I sailed through the SATs, took the two other specialist SATs that they require. I even got an interview, but I didn’t get in. The disappointment was very hard to deal with. So I ended up at my local university. A very good school, but not the one I wanted. It was, after all, my safety school. Who is really thrilled about that? I think they call that a first world problem.

My first year of university passed without incident. I was in residence, I had a boyfriend and in the supremely intelligent act of trying to prove to U of T how little I cared for it – I almost flunked everything I took. Some part of me didn’t take anything seriously and was very angry. This was a broad departure from who I really am (anal OCD perfectionist) and so in my second supremely intelligent act of trying to prove to U of T how little I cared for it; the following September I decided to join a sorority.

Sororities (or women’s fraternities as they are called up here barf) are not that popular in Canada, nor are they widely tolerated; and if they are tolerated then they are not encouraged. Most universities do not have them and if they do, they are managed by an off-campus separate organization called the Pan-Hellenic Association. From their website we can learn the following: There are only 16 Pan-Hellenic campuses in all of Canada (the largest country in the world!) and 8 of those sixteen are in Southern Ontario alone. This org manages the rules and regulations from everything from rushing procedure, quotas and in some cases it resolves disputes. By this I have heard it described, it throws its manicured hands in the air and leaves to get a glass of chardonnay when things get iffy. Things that a sorority can get in trouble for, from both it’s main house affiliation in the US and from the local Pan-Hellenic association are, men within the house, drugs, alcohol abuse, violence, destruction of property, academic probation and – wait for it – hazing new members, also known as pledges.

The rushing process was not that intense but it did take a lot of time. You have to meet the houses, the women and gather information in a structured manner which can feel managed. I do remember not being well-prepared for the meetings, not having rec’d the memos according to dress and co-ordinating timetables to plan activities was next to impossible. The women were cold and well-rehearsed. They were judgmental (naturally) and superficial. They also despised each other. It was quietly understood that the moment you accept your final invitation and chose your sorority all other communication with girls from different houses would cease. Within a week or 10 days the final envelopes were available for pick up and you knew what house had picked you. Because of the low numbers rushing, more than one envelope was awarded to each pledge.

For the first time in my college career I made a clear mature decision. I was not going to pick the most popular group of girls; I was going to pick the nicest. I had attended one house that had gone to great lengths to present themselves to me. They had sung songs in their beautiful common room and hugged each one of us on the way out while they presented us with tiny pine picture frames hand-painted with ivy leaves (I still have mine). This was the kind of lovely girl I wanted to be, someone who felt comfortable hugging strangers in their living room.

Pledge Week was scheduled to begin on a Friday afternoon and continue over a weekend. I never made it that far. Upon arriving at the house, the eight pledges were to dress only in white and obey what we were told to do by our new sisters. The first instruction was complete silence. We were blindfolded and made to follow each other into the basement with our hands on each others shoulders for stability. Each girl was brought forward individually and asked why she wanted to join the sorority. This was not a question we had been prepared for and I felt my answer was truly stupid. Upon answering there was a long pause and a bunch of feet stamped in approval. I realized I was in a room of people staring at me while I was blindfolded. I was led back to the group, waited until we were all re-assembled and then moved back up stairs. We got our coats to go outside and our wrists were tied together with a piece of rope, in addition to being blindfolded. Our sisters were getting bold with power and began to call us bitches and sluts. We pledges kept our vow of perfect silence. Outside on the sidewalk, they asked me to get on my knees, which I did. This forced the people I was attached to either move to their knees or crouch down. Then I was sharply forced back to my feet with a woman fiercely whispering “Stand up! Stand Up!” in my ear. I learned later that this was the one sister who disapproved of what was going on. However, this was the only time she ever spoke up and I never heard from her again.

We were marched through the neighborhood in front of the frat houses. I could hear hooting and catcalls as we passed. Then, onto the streetcar, then south to the harbourfront. Being October, it was abandoned and cold. Hours passed. We were brought to an open air music stage used for summer concerts and told to lie on our stomachs onstage in the dark. We were allowed to remove our blindfolds, or maybe they fell off. I remember looking at my next closest pledge who was from Australia and laughing hysterically out of nervousness. It was painfully clear that these women had no idea what to do with us, that they were drunk on the power of controlling us and that this served no purpose. We weren’t being “initiated” into a well-respected women’s group, we were rolling around on the ground of an abandoned park in the winter. I can’t stand stuff that holds no purpose. Like I said at the beginning, I had not formed a deep connection with anyone from the house and this was not was I was looking for. I had a group of real friends I could be hanging out with and it seemed like a waste of a Friday night. So I stood up and told them I was done. Like all overdramatic teenage girls, this caused a flurry of activity in my general direction. They wanted to know “Why?”, they assured me that it was almost over, they warned me that leaving meant I could not be part of the sorority. I politely responded that I understood but that I was still completely over it. We rode the subway back to campus in silence, I packed my belongings and went home and that was it. I was now a pariah among my new-found friends.

The following Monday, on the advice of my mother, I called the sorority headquarters in the States but when I mentioned that I wanted to report an incident of hazing the women was rude to me, then she hung up on me. I thought about and then composed a long letter and addressed it to the sorority headquarters in the States. It was returned unopened “address unknown”. I kept that unopened letter for ages as a constant reminder of what had happened. Then I threw it out and wrote this post instead.

Only one woman from the house – let’s call her PBT - spoke to me after that and she was very badly treated by her sisters because she was seen as a “traitor”. She invited me to a frat party a little while later and there – ironically - I met one of my most serious boyfriends of all time. Being with him for the rest of my university experience gave me a safe place to observe sororityland without actually being a part of it. It was there I learned more details about the house I had been rushing: about the rampant drug use and how sexually promiscuous these girls were, about how they were on academic probation for flunking out and how they pissed in the orange juice (literally) to passively-aggressively punish each other. I learned how the house, due to these and other violations, had narrowly missed losing its Charter and being shut down in prior years.

Additionally, I learned about the how the most popular house - the one I chose not to join - threw girls down on the floor of the bathroom of a local college bar and “playfully” kicked them as part of the initiation process. I learned from my boyfriend about the night during Pledge Week when a sorority brought their pledges into his frat house in their underwear with name tags that read “greasy boobs” and “elephant vagina” and asked the men to use magic marker to “X” out the fat on their body and circle the lean parts.
One of the women – let’s call her Shoshanna - from the house became obsessed with my boyfriend after she discovered he was courting me. He said that before we met, Shoshanna used to playfully flirt with him by yelling “Wouldn’t John make the cutest cabana boy?” at parties. Given that we live in Canada, the concept of a cabana is a foreign one and only served to underscore just how wealthy she was. She eventually had to switch the insult/flirt to “pool boy” in order to be properly understood by drunken frat boys. He didn’t appreciate it, but she was cute and in the same pre-law stream and the logician in him figured it was only a matter of time before he would sleep with her. When he met me and lost interest in Shoshanna, she began to loudly complain that frat guys should not date outside the sororityland (then how do you explain all the strippers?) and when that didn’t work to get his attention, she spread the following rumor: She told him that I was obsessed with her and that I forced myself into bathroom that she was using at a party because I am a closet lesbian. (Has anyone see Mean Girls?)

Reader’s Note: Using the word lesbian as a descriptor does not turn frat boys OFF

I vividly remember this incident. I was exiting a single bathroom on the main floor after being turned away from the quieter second floor washroom. Shoshanna came flying out of nowhere with a drink in her hand screaming (as usual) that she had to pee and punched me back inside, because due to crowding it was quicker than allowing me to exit. I began to re-open the door to leave for the second time when she began to scream that if I did that, the whole room would see her on the toilet. This was true, so I stood with my back to her as she finished while listening to her ask me personal questions because “now we have a chance to talk”. She was drunk and friendly and funny and I was laughing out of nervousness (see a pattern?), but I do remember being slightly scared of her, which is rare for me.

I never saw any of the girls from that experience ever again. Even at frat parties, they simply disappeared. At the end of my fourth miserable year of nearly flunking everything, I shared a class with the Australian girl for two weeks by happy accident. I did not mention the past, but she was quick to explain that she never really hung out at the house after that first fateful year; mostly she talked about her sexy bad boy motorcycle-riding boyfriend. Sexy bad-boy motorcycle-riding boyfriends were a hot commodity back then but I guess they never really go out of style. I was happy for her but I could feel that she was very guarded. I did not press her for any details but she seemed frightened that I would.

I would occasionally run into PBT at bars and clubs in later years. She got a nose job, became the girlfriend of a very successful drug dealer and dropped out of university because she didn’t “see the point”. I never saw her again either, but if you are out there PBT and you know who you are and what PBT stands for, I would love to meet for a drink. You were the only one who stood up for me and what you believed in and courage like that should be rewarded.

This post is in honor of you.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Getting Your Way Through Your Vagina

This is not a real post, this was just too good to pass up. A man – upon learning about my job – asked if it was true that women slept their way to the top in my industry. I assured him in the affirmative;

“Totally true!” I gushed. “I am sleeping with my boss right now! I just hope her wife doesn’t find out!”

I wasn’t sure that he would get the subtle jest I was making; in that, I work for mostly women and so sleeping to the top is something of an outdated concept. In addition to that fact that she was gay and I am not – the irony being that I am on a dating website to meet men - but I digress. He replied:

I knew that it is true. I know also a woman where I work, believe me she has not skill sets, she just went out with guy executives and within 3 years she got 4 promotions. Well what can you say, woman get their way through their vagina.

Indeed, Dear Reader, indeed. The phrase “woman get their way through their vagina” was blogger gold deeply offensive. What can you say? Only this: They guy may sound like a paranoid maniac but the kind of person he is talking about actually does live amongst us. There are female psychopaths too – and they don’t just drive men insane, they can seriously fuck a sister up. And it leads to an important point that I have been thinking about for some time: that of the Train Wreck. Women who “sleep” or flirt or fuck or lie, cheat, steal their way into your lives and elsewhere actually do exist.

Let's begin with a quick primer:
A Train Wreck is the Lindsay Lohan of the everyday world. She will often be very physically attractive. She will be young, or still look young. You will know her because she will be the loudest woman in the room, she will also be the shiniest. She will be a very good mimic – what you like, she LOVES and will be crazy knowledgeable about. She will be very forthcoming in just a few minutes. If you feel like you have made a very deep connection with another woman in less than 3 minutes, you may have met a Train Wreck.

Caution, Single Girl!

A Train Wreck will want something from you. If the train wreck was a man, he would want to fuck you and leave you and we would call him a Player. But the female Train Wreck will be even more damaging: She will want to fuck what you are fucking.

The Train Wreck is ALWAYS in a rocky relationship with another woman’s man (see: Charlize Theron's character in Young Adult). Famous Train Wrecks include Monica Lewinsky, Reille Hunter, and Marilyn Monroe. (sorry, darling, the truth hurts). Whether he is President, looking to become President, or actually President (again) he will be successful, handsome and already yours. Train Wrecks do things like call a man’s dead wife a “vindicitive bitch”, they steal small items from peasants like fur coats and diamond necklaces and do not serve time in prison once convicted of the crime. They eventually commit suicide. Let me repeat that for all of you who buy the new People magazine every Thursday morning: Train Wrecks – the same ones on the cover of the tabloid – eventually commit suicide. Or die violent deaths.

{Did you know that the rate of suicide triples – not doubles, triples – among women who have had breast enlargement? Yep, that little factoid was published by that dirty rag known as the Annals of Plastic Surgery in August of 2007. You know who else has big fake tits? Train Wrecks.}

The point is, getting your way through your vagina is a short-term prospect. To be valued for your beauty or sex is a limited time offer. If you make any money at all, it is usually eaten up servicing the Cult of Beauty; $300 face creams, laser microdermabrasion, yet more surgery. The people around you know that this is happening. They do not respect you for it. It’s like performance art: relevant but still only transitory.

As a parasite, will need to re-invent yourself under a new persona as soon as the host has died. This means that you may assist a boss in hurting people, but he will turn on you just as quickly. Train Wrecks are always surprised when they are re-assigned to a different job after being used as the hammer. It's kind of like being replaced with a new, younger Trophy Wife when you start to get old and fat. If you are in the business of selling yourself to the highest bidder, you do not get to act shocked when there is market volatility. This is why Train Wrecks have trouble forming beneficial relationships. They have no self-esteem. They have trouble forming relationships with men who have good values, because they can not see past his looks and/or bank account. They explain this as being “picky”, right up until he chooses someone else. Then they know exactly who they want.

If you are getting your way through your vagina, I applaud you. Just not with my lady lips.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Blame the Heat wave

Caution: Within in this blog post, there is a very small (heh) picture of a penis. Actually, two penises (penii? penium?). If you are at all skittish about full frontal male nudity, please do not read this post. Or read it and do not look at the pictures. Please consider yourself warned.

There is a very clear warning at the top of my online dating profile. It reads:

Do not send naked pictures.

It happened often enough that I needed to do this. While I am not entirely sure what thrill men get from this, I have to burst your bubble: they all look the same. And by the same, I mean “ugly”. Nothing photographs worse than an erect penis, and you can put that in the big book of declarative sentences I never thought I would publish online.

There is also disclaimer on my online dating profile, it reads:

Rude messages sent directly to me will be posted on the internet.

Sadly, most men do not read this far; and when they neglect to do so, hilarity often ensures.

Case Study #1

Subject presents with a nice message and a highly suspect photo. He was wearing sunglasses and a hat and a heavy coat and he was in his car. This usually means the guy is bald – why hide it? bald is beautiful – and so I asked that he send a “clear picture of your face”. That is fairly clear, yes? And is that what he sent? Hilariously, no…

He sent this:
Careful! There is an eraser down your pants!
Next to a clear picture of his face:
I love a man who matches his underwear to his suit.

Now, I do not know how stupid you have to be to send pictures of your crotch beside your face on the internet, I just know that it is below beating a stick on the ground and just above jabbing that same stick in your eye. At the time, I thought this would be the highlight of my week the only one, but then lightening struck twice…

Case Study #2

Subject presents with tame online message and asked for my number. He began to text and indicated that he was not actually single, that – in fact – he was married, or as he described it: “living with someone”. I abruptly terminated any further text messages by writing “Sorry. No longer interested”

Readers Note: Experts are very conflicted on the exact percentage or the statistics of married men who troll the internets saying they are single. To compound the matter, this is a completely different number from men who clearly state up front they are married and troll the internets looking for something on the side. Understandably, this causes women to be very suspicious and the lack of transparency is one the top reasons nice girls avoid online dating.

Personally, I have heard anywhere from 25% to 75% of all profiles are built my married men. To be safe, I round it out to 50%. This sounds high but it is no different from the men who take off their wedding rings and hit The Keg on King St on Thursday nights. My point is, single gals are meeting liars everyday. One way to avoid embarrassment is to follow The Rules. Never approach/write to a man first and never read his profile because it could be full of untruths.

In life, you are only responsible for your actions. If a man pursues you and follows through with a simple drinks date only to let it drop that he is actually married, then you have remained completely blameless; you have done nothing wrong. Once you learn that a man is married, be super cool. Make your excuses and leave. Or stay and hear what he has to stay and then leave. My point is, you are going to meet unhappy people everywhere, don’t start becoming a crusader for women’s rights while sitting across the table from a stranger because that is really one-sided and exhausting. You honestly do not know what that person is living through. However, married men who cheat with you will cheat on you. That is the 11th commandment and I hope you are never stupid enough to get involved in a fantasy relationship. This blog is not for stupid Train Wrecks, so let me show you to the door.

But back to my story, I wrote “Sorry. No longer interested” and deleted the string. Six hours later – while I was eating dinner! Ew! – he sent the following:

If you have lost this hairy penis, or you know the owner, please email me.

Friday, July 13, 2012 = Communists!

I know, I know...

This actually isn’t that good of a story, but everyone laughs at the punch line so I have to share it.

I went on It went okay. I was tweaking my profile when I got the bright idea to write that I was open to writing to military guys stationed overseas and that I supported the troops.

Reader’s Note: My father was in the military before he died. And he was an American.

I think I even included that part. It was a fairly benign statement, like, I like being happy or I like eating ice cream when it’s hot, or I like when people are proud enough of their country to fight for it… blah, blah, blah...

And the next thing I know, kicked me off the site and refunded my money. Like, in less than 6 hours they did this. I sent an email asking why and they said that they would not tell me without a court order in the State of Tennessee. I’m not fucking joking. I have no idea what the State of Tennessee has to do with this, other than it is awesome.

This confused me for the longest time. I thought they had discovered this blog. Which is fine, because you can not separate me from my constitutional right of free expression. But then it dawned on my (Indonesian-American) friend; they thought I was looking for a green card. As if a Canadian looking to have a baby would ever move to the US – land of no universal healthcare. Get serious. Most Americans move UP HERE when they get a Canuck girlfriend. I can name five guys that I know personally that did this. Puh-leeze.

So here’s the punch line: When they refunded my money, I lost out on the exchange rate. I had purchased my subscription when the CDN was above par and when I got kicked off, my value was slightly less. So denied my right to life, liberty, marriage, babies and a fair exchange rate. = Communists!

Friday, July 6, 2012

Date #63 - Behold The Omnibus Man! (Richard Crane The Second)

No, it doesn't, Baby. But I'm willing to pretend to discuss it if I get more oral and anal sex. And threesomes.

This man asked for my number online and then - despite my clear instructions - began texting. I got irritated and wrote back,

"As it clearly states on my profile I do not text strangers so either call like a grown up or get lost."

Reader's Note: This is completely against The Rules which advises that you can never "force" the relationship from email/text to phone. I just can't stand strangers text my phone. It makes me feel dirty.

He must like assertive girls because: Call. He. Did. Many times. Sadly, I never got the phone in time. He tried again a few weeks later and when I picked up the phone he actually planned a full date including day, time and location! Really rare. It's usually this never ending tennis match of,

"So, what do you want to do?"
"Gee dunno what do you want to do..." Etc. Ad infinitum

He picked Jack Astor's, which means he wanted to have a quick drink in the equivalent of an arcade. From my experience, meeting in this environment can mean that he is threatened by verbal intimacy. But The Rules advise that it is not up to you to judge, and I had already pushed my luck with the whole texting thing, so off I went on a beautifully warm June evening.

First off, Jack's has changed, Bra'! The place was the size of a soccer field with wall-to-wall TVs and a bar that was 40 feet long. Everything - including the waitresses breasts - was tastefully over-the-top; it was like an upscale Hooter's.

And sitting at the end of the bar was Rodger from Jersey Shore. Just kidding.

It was his 42 year old older brother. Or a guy just like him. He was powerfully built, he obviously worked out regularly (i.e. juice head gorilla). He had a Christian Audigier v-neck T-shirt and a giant silver chain around his neck upon which hung a large crucifx. We pecked in greeting and he began to talk. He talked for 55 minutes straight. He did not drink alcohol but was willing to buy me a glass of white wine. He started off telling me that he needed to lose weight. Then he moved to the meat and potatoes. He had many girlfriends, had never been married, no kids. He was currently dating up to 3 women and would I like to be added to the harem? It meant I would have to be open to threesomes. He wanted to be honest up front so there was no confusion. Without waiting for answer, he moved to the endurance part of the date where he regaled me with stories of former paramours.
Highlights included:
~How he had been to Cancun 17 times and his belief that the Mexicans secretly want to kill us all and he would never go again.
~How he usually dates perfect 10 models but for me he would make an exception.
~How every woman his age was divorced with kids. This seemed to surprise him.
~How every woman his age is a gold-digging financial train wreck. On this one point we agreed and spoke at length. He was very surprised that I saw it his way. On the topic of marriage and inevitable divorce, he said:

"I have never met a woman who was hot enough to give half my stuff to."

I told him how well-put this was and that from his perspective it made sense. Finally, he told me about the time he titty-fucked a woman with basketball-sized breasts. (This explains why we were meeting at Jack Astor's) At this point, I became seriously distracted and a part of me was dying for this sad man who lived in a sex-saturated fantasy.

I believe in God and Love and the Triumpth of the human spirit and that did not seem to fit anywhere in his world.

I lost my train of thought - I literally had no coherent response to the above-mentioned statement - and decided it was time to wind the date up.
He did not offer to walk me to my car, he told me to go and he would take care of the bill. His parting words were a request that I send him pictures of my pussy via the internet. I graciously declined and left him sitting there at the bar.

Full Disclosure: As per The Rules, I did not contact this man. Ten days later he contacted me with the following:

Batteries not included. Some assembly required.

Date #62 - Internet Psycho Alert

Answers to the name Jason
Guilty of being late and ...ahem ... how to say this calmly: UTTERING THREATS.

Yes, you read that right. This actually happened.

This man asked to me meet me at my local. When he finally arrived he was in a very angry state. I suppose traffic had been bad? Dunno. We exchanged a few words but there was no doubt he was angry... about something. Then he called someone a "fat whore".

I made my excuses and left. He followed me out the door and into the street. Then he made a move toward my body. I said "Don't touch me".

He said "I will beat the shit out of you".

And at that exact moment... a police car stopped in front of us. It was a purely coincidence! The police car was stopped in the same heavy traffic that had wound this guy up. I took a moment to drink in the irony (I actually do not like the police) and when I turned around, Date #62 was gone. Like magic.

Toronto gals, be on the look out.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Puh-pa Puh-pa Puh-pa Puh-pa Puh-pa-pa. Pump Pump Pum- BLOOD!

What the priest said to me at my last Confession

My grandmother was obsessed with her blood. If there is such a thing as “big-boned”, then my grandmother believed herself to be “big-blooded”. More specifically she was obsessed with the thickness of her blood. She believed that illness could be prevented by maintaining a thin blood flow. She would not eat meat in the summer for fear of thickening her blood and she would not give me my delicious Flintstone vitamins in the summer for the same reason. Instead, she would eat the Filet-O-Fish at McDonalds on Fridays, something she called “the fishy burger”. A Filet-O-Fish is a remarkable feat of engineering in my opinion. Both the patty and the bun are inexplicably smooth with an inoffensive fish odor. That’s kind of a miracle when dealing with fish. In hindsight, I wonder if her desire for the fishy burger stemmed from delicate gums and untrustworthy dentures rather than a fear of thick blood and/or mad cow disease.

I had always suspected this blood management obsession was an old wives tale but she lived to be 99 and a half years old and smoked and drank whiskey for more than 70 of those years so maybe the old bat knew her stuff. It is a known fact that thinner blood means lower blood pressure and this can be important to maintain in later life. She would never donate her blood, either. I once asked her why and she hugged her arms and mumbled “It’s mine! All mine…” staring darkly in the middle distance like an adorable Gollum. One did not question my grandmother too keenly.

I have always enjoyed having blood drawn – probably because I am secretly scared that I have too much of it – and so donating blood would be the natural evolution for a person like me. Not so fast. There is a blood cartel and it’s called The Red Cross. It’s one of the oldest gangs around. This group of soft shoes tyrants have nurse practitioner degrees and they know how to use them. Giving blood is not all it’s cracked up to be in the Calvin and Hobbes cartoons that I use to explain everything Science. My very reasonable expectation is that I lie down on a bed that is quiet, strap on the blood feed bag for the excessively pale and let it pump until someone notices my heart is barely working. Then I get a cookie, a small hospital-size plastic of Tang and maybe some cash for being a good girl. With a wink and wave, I sashay out of there, saying “I come from a long line of blood over-producers, so I’ll see you next week, Toots.”


My first and last time trying to donate went a little something like this: First you have to fill out a form(s). Apparently blood can be unclean. Not thick or thin but UNCLEAN. Holy hell, what kind of world is this? And in order to determine if they even want your blood

read: WHAT THE LIVING FUCK?!? Why won’t you take it from me?!?!?

They ask you a series of progressively personal questions. Questions like Where have you been in the world? What kind of vaccinations have you had? Have you ever used drugs? What kind of drugs? Who gave them to you? When? For how long? etc…

Here is what The Red Cross write on their website under the FAQ:

Why does the Red Cross ask so many personal questions when I give blood?
The highest priorities of the Red Cross are the safety of the blood supply and our blood donors. Some individuals may be at risk of transferring communicable disease through blood donation due to exposure via travel or other activities or may encounter problems with blood donation due to their health. We ask these questions to ensure that it is safe for patients to receive your blood and to ensure that it is safe for you to donate blood that day.

Well, in the interest of being a good-blooded Canadian, I admitted that I had been to 31 countries. Mostly in Europe and Asia. That I had been inoculated against many things, including and not limited to Malaria, Yellow Fever and Japanese Encephalitis (That vaccine cost me $250!). In addition to that I checked the box that confirmed I had - in fact - tried drugs. But it was a long time ago. And so it probably didn’t count.

The young girl who processed me read my form, looked at me carefully and then called her supervisor. The supervisor carefully read my form in perfect silence – did NOT look at me – and asked me to step into another secret room made of MASH-style fabric walls. We sat at a round table and she spoke to me in hushed tones.

It says here that you have used [insert name of really-common-not-legal-but-totally-tolerated drug], is that true?


Why would you do that? she asked plaintively

Not sure. Wanted to try it It was a long time agoI’m sureit’snolongerinmybloodstream.

Well… she sighed. It’s not the [drug] that remains. A lot of girls pay for drugs with sex.


Reader’s Note: I do not know any girls who want to donate blood that have ALSO had to pay for drugs with sex. This is also probably the most hilariously sexist thing I have ever heard. Do they turn away men for the same reason?

Nope, I paid for it with cold hard cash I responded levelly. I was now certain this woman was a lunatic and the whole blood donate thing was a huge waste of time and a way to track embarrassing info for later nefarious use. I wanted to explain further that my “drugdealer” was a woman who worked in a downtown office and wore a suit everyday but I figured the supervisor – who was wearing scrubs - wasn’t listening.

She gently explained that she would not be able to accept my blood because I had answered honestly to this question and that I should come back in 2 years when the statute of sleeping-for-your-drugs-limitations ran out. The short answer is, the blood they are collecting is from honest people who have perfect blood and lying people who are full of toxic chemicals. I am not sure which one I am and so I have never been back.

Sometimes The Red Cross makes the mistake of phoning me. I used to explain that I had been to too many countries and that they did not want my blood. Eventually they called so much that I just ended up screaming at them that I was a drug user and unsuitable. I continue to avoid meat in the summer and anything that could inadvertently thicken my blood. I have learned that getting pregnant DOUBLES your blood capacity in your body, sooooooooo I am going to adopt. But I probably won’t be approved anyway because since that time I have learned to sleep with people for everything from prescriptions to groceries to car washes.

And that is how The Red Cross helped me find my true calling as a crack whore.

Friday, June 8, 2012

The Differences Between a Friend (With Benefits) and a Booty Call. Maybe.

When Booty Calling, be sure to include your name.

It’s obvious that I am pro-marriage, but did you know that I am also pro-SEX? When it comes to sex, it is my personal belief that there is no subject that is more talked that also boasts the least amount of action. I think that people who talk about it the most, do it the least. I have narrowed it down to a mathematical theorem: The amount you talk about sex is inversely proportional to the amount of sex you are actually having.

As you may recall from my experience with Date#40, I am not opposed to the concept of a Friend with Benefits. I feel that not every night of your life needs to be judged as perfect and that sometimes people get swept away for short periods of time with someone who is completely wrong but has the right chemistry. This used to have a name: It was called being “swept away”. Before our era of ultra-control, this relieved an unmarried woman of full responsibility of her actions. Biblically speaking being “swept away” is only a venial sin (not that serious), not a mortal one (extremely serious). However, if you are already married you’ve just committed a mortal sin no matter how “swept away” you may claim to be (extremely serious). I feel that the state of your eternal soul to be worthy of serious discussion so consider yourself fairly warned.

In short, I encourage people to find what gets them off and pursue it, right up until they change their minds to pursue something else. I encourage women to take yes for an answer and not be uptight. However, you must maintain your boundaries and self-care which requires maturity and foresight. Ironically, living your hot sweaty short game takes an enormous understanding of the long-term ramifications. That is why sex is both fun AND confusing.

A Booty Call is a completely different animal. This is where a man calls you up in the middle of the night and …. See that’s the part I don’t get because it has never happened all the way for me.

Let me start again:
I think it is where a guy gets unbelievably hammered and wants to have sex despite not really being able to. So – instead of hiring a prostitute - he texts at 3am and wonders if you can come over. There are a couple of logistical problems that need to be overcome in this scenario.

One, he will need to live completely by himself because otherwise he will be bugging his roommates/parents/wife.

Two, you will need to be awake and interested in this idea enough to go to his place. This is a big jump in my mind. I can’t really see fucking for another hour or so AFTER coming home late from work/ a bar or dancing. There is also a philosophy syllogism here: If you know where his place is and it’s plausible to think you would go there in the middle of the night, then aren’t you in some sort of real relationship anyway? If so, you just lost your Booty Call status and are back to Friends (With Benefits).

Three, this means that whatever you were going to do the next morning, it will have to be re-scheduled, because you will be tired. Remember that part about foresight? You get the Honorary Train Wreck Award if you lose your job over a Booty Call. Not a good look, Single Girl.

Four, a Booty Call apparently means that you leave right after sex because you are not in a relationship; and it even has a cool name, The Walk of Shame. I love sex, so I’m not sure how it’s Shameful. Just to brag: I have done The Walk on a beach in Turks and Caicos as the sun was rising and I can attest it was one of the most beautiful and life-affirming moments of my life.

I don’t like sex when it’s not my idea. A man can convince me it’s my idea if he actually dates me, but being needy for sex on my phone in the middle of the night is not that convincing. Mad Texters who like to Booty Call should ALSO remember that those messages do not seem so sexy when they are being read on Sunday morning while I’m on my way to church... *cue the angels singing*

Or when they are being posted to my blog.

Based on this series of arguments, I feel that a Booty Call is something of a rare unicorn in the dating world. How is it done in real life? Sadly, the “shame” part keeps most girls pretty tight-lipped about the whole thing. Dear Reader, you are welcome to post comments.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Date #61: The lo0ser Always Rings Twice

This man sent me a series of messages online alluding to the possibility of meeting for a drink; but he was never all the way clear, and he was fairly good looking. I deleted the messages for two reasons: one, I could feel I was dangerously close to becoming the social director and two, I am making the leap from good looking to good values (which is similar to taking a vow of celibacy) and he was too much of the former.

He sent yet more messages but instead of sticking to my guns, I broke The Rules by giving him my number before he asked. I also included a stupid reminder that he not text me to death. So much for not being the social director! Quick like a bunny he began texting me, angling for a weekend date. It was already Thursday so I deleted them. He tried again the following Monday and since this is a sign of seriousness, I took him seriously. He asked for a night I was free, I suggested Thursday (three days in the future) and he agreed. He circled back on Wednesday to ask for a spot. At this point The Rules advise it is okay to suggest a spot convenient for you, and he has to love it or leave it. He loved it.

Precisely 1 hour before the scheduled date he texted that he needed to be 15 minutes late to make a work phone call. This is bad sign. He knew about the date first, and it should be given top priority. The Rules remind us that any man who is serious about meeting a woman will not pull stunts like this. To put this in perspective, he wouldn't do that to a top client he was trying to sign to a big deal, amirite?
Mostly what he was saying was: Don’t take me seriously. I'm a flake.

However, everyone gets sidetracked. Maybe he was telling the truth or maybe he was sick. I am not trying to win awards for being inflexible; so I responded in manspeak:

"No prob. I'll wait 5 min. Otherwise we can reschedule".

Well, that got him! He wrote back "Deal" and was there early. He was good looking, funny and kept the conversation light and moving. I was calm, not too talkative and laughed at his stories.
I enjoyed one glass of wine and ended the date first. (Point for me!)
He walked me to my car and we pecked goodnight. (Point for him!)

I was walking on air. I figured it would be a good sign if he reconnected within three days. And so I was pleasantly surprised went he sent a text within the hour: "Thanks for the drink. I really needed it :)" I wrote "I had a great time" and he wrote "me too". I prayed he would not write anymore and ruin it. But my prayer was not answered.

The next text was "So what are you looking for from this?" (Read: Is it cool if I booty call you later?)
I was thinking "Awe...Why'dja hafta ruin it?" and that is what I wrote.

As expected, this caused him to reach Rage Level 10. He told me I was a "lo0ser" and not his type. Really? Smart and beautiful with good values and lots of money is not his type? But what he really meant was:
How did you get me here? I didn't ask for your number, I didn't plan the date... I just wanna fuck.

This is why it doesn’t pay to be the Social Director when meeting someone for the first time. He had told me he lived with a lazy broke Australian. He told me it was like living in a frat house and that he loved it. I don't blame him; I used to live in a frat house too (long story) and I loved it. So there he will stay.

But it doesn’t end there, Dear Reader!

The following morning – BRIGHT and EARLY – I received the following message from “Tony from Woodbridge”: (Reader’s Note: Wes is the name of the guy I actually met.)

Don't text strangers. Especially not Tony from Woodbridge.

Anyone who has read this blog knows that this is the first time this has happened. Ever. To Anyone. On Planet Earth. Let me take a moment and point out a couple of things I have learned from Online Dating:

1) People from Woodbridge can’t form sentences.
2) Men do not use the word “date” in text messages.
3) Men do not tell their whole life story to a stranger via text message: “I was on POF and I met this girl named Mary…”
4) Everyone knows that when you do online dating you do not need to write down people’s numbers! Your phone does it for you! (sheesh, I was born at night, but not last night)
5) His order of operations is messed up. Any guy that was going to get a girl’s number would have done so before he planned the date. He would not have planned the date online and then asked for her number as some bizarre afterthought.
6) I have never met a man who confirmed a Saturday night date on a Friday morning at 11am. That is 30 hours earlier than anything I – or The Rules - have ever experienced.

I am fairly certain that this was a prank engineered by Date#61. Bitch Please.

Friday, May 25, 2012

The Character Arc of a Louis Vuitton Purse

This is my Louis Vuitton Purse. There are many like it, but this one is mine.
I have always wanted to be older. I even won an award at sleep-away camp for Most Likely to Act Older than My Age. It was a red stiletto made out of construction paper with my name on it. I think it was meant to be a cautionary award, but I was shockingly excited to have won it and I kept it for years. It meant my plan was working; all those camp fires with my Roots hoodie unzipped to show my bathing suit top were not in vain. All those times I pulled my bathing suit high up on my hips above the waistband of my shorts to show that half inch of untanned flesh was not going unnoticed.

I truly hated myself for wanting a Louis Vuitton purse, but since I make all my important decision in the following way, “What would Monica Vitti do in L’Avventura?” it was clear that a Louis Vuitton was somehow in my future. I felt like it would make me look older, more relaxed, more secure, successful and of course more beautiful in an ugly way. I say “ugly” because by wearing a symbol of conspicuous consumption, you automatically put your peer group on edge, followed in short order by women who are actually older, more relaxed, more secure, more successful and more beautiful- but still do not have a Louis Vuitton purse. I had not immediately realized that this would be the case.

While it was still in the contemplation stage, the first reaction was, “Well, why would you do that?” Followed by “My mother had one and the handle turned ugly brown…yours will too in about a year”.

The trip to the store was not that friendly. You are dealing with sales assistants that don’t make enough to afford one either, causing one bizarre conversation after another.

“Can I help you?”

“Yes, I would like to look at that purse” you say and point at one of the wooden cubbies artfully backlit while an unceasing torrent of Asian tourists jostle you trying to get the sales girl attention. She will bring it down and then stare at you while you gently touch the purse, pretending to look at it as though you have not already spent months on the website looking at it from every angle.

The sales girl will become bored with you and move on to an elderly man who is whispering hoarsely in Mandarin, holding three belts in one hand and some key chains in the other. When she returns, you ask “Is it made of leather?”

“Yes”, she sighs clearly irritated.

Reader’s note: No. It is not made of leather. The most popular Louis Vuitton bags are made of canvas sealed in plastic. Not joking. The only leather part is the untreated leather handle which turns a deep tan from the oils on your skin and sunlight and pollution. You can use a leather moisturizer to clean it, but this accelerates the browning process.

You ask “Is it suede on the inside?”

“Yes” she answers a little distractedly while looking at her nails. You can tell no one has asked this before.

Reader’s Note: No. It is not made of suede. It is made of brushed cotton which is lovely and soft, but not suede.

She leaves you again to help someone else and you realize that she does not take you seriously. You gaze around the room trying to ask yourself, “Is this really the one, worth a small mortgage payment?” and when she returns you whisper “Yes, I would like to buy it”. She pushes the shop-worn bag (with a half-brown handle) toward you and you realize that she is saving the newer ones for someone else.

“No” you say with more confidence than you feel “I would like a new one”. You are beginning to get how to play this game. She shrugs, which in hipster means: I admit defeat, worthy opponent and slowly ambles to the back room. She returns and presents you with a new one which you inspect carefully, then buy. Your throat is dry and your face is red. Is this really who I am now?

The first question is always, “Is it real?” This is after the cursory scan of your eyes and then the purse and then your body. The second is a statement “Wow, those cost a lot!” At which point, I smile demurely and look down. This is how I imagine pretty girls with fathers receive compliments. Very rarely – from girls I would never imagine even know what Louis Vuitton is - “How much was it?” To this I say with a big sigh “It was a lot.” Followed by dead silence.

I was thrilled to have it, but I was hopelessly embarrassed by the purse. I threw it on the floor of restaurants and airports to show the world how little I cared about it; as if to say, “See, nothing has changed! I am still the big loser you love to hate!” The purse cast in sharp relief how ill-prepared I was to be successful and confident and enjoy the fruits of my labours. The purse made me even more insecure.

Ultimately a grown woman - hugely successful and on television to give her business opinion on the stock markets - walked up to my desk one day shortly after Christmas. She had a brand new purse under her arm. It was exactly the same as mine.
"My husband bought me this", she stated.
I said it was beautiful.
“He also bought me the wallet", she stated in a dull, flat tone showing it to me.
I said how nice it was, how it could double as a clutch given its large size.
She quickly cut to the point “I see you have the same purse; do you have the wallet as well?”
No, I said.
She pursed her lips and seemed satisfied.
Finally: “Did you buy it on your own or is someone taking care of you?"
Once the shock wore off from being demeaned to that extent, I realized a second truth. I worked in the same office as this woman she did not believe I had enough money to buy a purse like hers.

I have had the purse for a year and, as predicted, the handle has gone horribly brown. The canvas is no longer stiff and the purse slouches unattractively when left to its own devices, although I make an effort to never put it on the floor ever again. I want to be friends with my purse and I worry that I gave it low self esteem. These are just some of the thoughts that go through my head when I look at it.

I believe it was Naomi Wolf who first said, we women must be careful that we do not become our purses. I.e. an accessory; a vessel to put things in. A vessel for a man to put things in. Somewhat useless, since men use pockets. A purse’s value is how it looks, not how useful it is. A purse’s value increases depending on the name stamp in gold upon it. Stamping implies ownership, a large brass plate is what we put on buildings to advise the address, but only if the address is worthy. There are no large embossed brass plates in the slums. If a woman is a purse, what name is stamped on her? What name is stamped on me?

I will never buy a Louis Vuitton purse again.

Friday, May 18, 2012

coffee meet ups borning

Meet Joseph
This is Joseph's online profile

~About Me~

I have pictures just not on display, I'd rather have the choice of who I send a message to and not who sees my picture and sends me a message purely on what I look like.

I'm a naturalist, environmentalist, humanitarian that enjoy being outdoors, mountainbike riding, walking, hiking, rollerblading, kayaking, I prefer summer over spring, spring over fall, fall over winter but appreciate all seasons in there own way.

I would like to further my knowledge and wisdom continuing learning all I can about many topics from history to geography, ancient civilizations, Greek methology, Egyptethology, ancient rome, British history, the lost island of MU etc etc.

(Reader’s Note: …the lost island of What?!)

what makes me unique is I'm awake, I'm not a person who believes much of what I read or see.

(Reader’s Note: Remember this. It will be important later.)

I like music with a good beat from classic rock to some Jazz to older hip hop and reggae music not played on the radio... No top 40.

Down to earth realist who is non judge mental open minded is the type of character I have. I'm passionate about life and positive energy, to me this is what life is about and helping others, being selfless, it's not about the status the ego, the car, the house, the clothes, the job, it's how you treat others because all that material stuff can be gone in a second and you won't be remembered for what you had, you will be remembered for who you where, what you stood for and your charactor as a human being.

Let's be honest we can say all the good traits about ourselfs but you dont truly know unless you meet in person if you will be attracted have a connection chemistry and personalities getting along.

Over messages you can't get to know anyone, sure the first few messages and I'm not talking 10 words or two sentences but actually writing a short chapter is aparagraph at least and gets a conversation go.

~First Date~
Meet up have a drink do an activity like pool, bowling, walk, hike, rollerblade, winery, ice skating, hot chocolate, tea, ice cream, museum, art gallery, bite to eat, dancing.

as long as its something other then the same old coffee interview, which I don't do nor do i even drink coffee coffee meet ups borning and not my style....

Doing something fun like an activity gets a better way to see a persons personality cause really that's what it's all about in the end. Looks get you in the door personality gets you a friend and things blossom from there.

So the women who are checking out my profile after receiving a message from me, please send me a paragraph so we can have a conversation to get started or at least send me a message back to acknowledge the message I sent thank you. Thats not to much to ask for is it?

Did you enjoy that, Dear Reader? He seems normal, right?
Wait! It gets better. This is what he wrote me via text message…

Reader's Note: FML

Friday, May 4, 2012

Magical Sex Ninjas

New Canadian slang (ma-GIK-hal secks nin-JAHS)

1. an imaginary creature that haunts the nightmares of women concerning the fidelity of their boyfriends or husbands
2. The false belief that certain women can control a man’s behaviour using a variety of increasingly creative sex acts.
3. The false belief that sex is enough to support a healthy marriage at the exclusion other important factors.

When I was growing up, I did not develop early; I had a very skinny body and I liked reading. I did not have a popular sibling nor did not have a lot of money or an exciting hobby. As a result, I was not popular or well-liked by large groups of people; and I am old enough now to be grateful for that. More importantly, I was not taught at an early age that I was only valuable for the pleasure I brought a man. If he liked me, it was probably because I had a nice smile; I had braces. Twice. And five teeth removed. And head gear. When it was all over I had pretty straight teeth. People still comment on it, as in, mothers point at my teeth in the grocery store and say loudly to their children “See? She had braces and look at how straight her teeth are!” The children just glare. I can not imagine my parents trying to convince me to get braces. If they paid for it, then it was happening even if I had to be chained to orthodontist chair to do it. (That only happened once). The lesson I learned there was, kids are mean.

But by the time I was ready to enter high school I did have something that people seemed to be interested in. Remember that skinny body and ultra straight teeth? Well, it may come as a shock to you but modeling agencies have an interest in children who possess those features and I was in commercials and used as a movie extra before I turned 13. I had an ACTRA card and everything. This world was very strange. First, the adults were all men and incredibly pissed off; they encouraged you NOT to eat despite the tables groaning with food, not to play with the dog despite how cute he looked and they all smoked. It was just adults in total power and children fending for themselves. No one told us what to do unless you were in trouble, otherwise you just guessed. You had to stay jolly despite being cold and it raining for hours, or else your part was given to someone who was “happier”. The lesson I learned there was, people are mean but an outgoing personality is everything. I stopped accepting offers because the person who was supposed to drive me suddenly disappeared out of my life and no one wanted to take their place. In retrospect I find it strange that everyone was so willing to give up what was - in fact - my first paying job. But everyone acted like it never happened and so I bid a fond farwell to the “acting world” and went to high school…

Finding a man you would actually want to have sex with is fun. Finding out he would like to have sex with you is exciting. Not just mentally stimulating, but it makes your heart beat fast and your legs tingle if you think about it long enough. It’s a serious high and being high makes people want to talk. The only problem is, if fucking isn’t your full time job then there is sometimes a desire to seem more skilled than necessary when you finally do start having sex with a man. And the way to convince people you are an expert is to talk about it. (Right?) Welcome to High School. At every high school there are those girls. The girls who had guys who wanted to fuck them. The girls who proclaimed loudly (at my Catholic high school) that they were taking birth control to prepare for the Sex Olympics.

Yes, that’s right; at my high school sex was an Olympic sport.

They sat in a perfumed coven at the back of the classroom and made endless sex jokes at 8:30am in first period history and high-fived each other. Every. Single. Time. And from their conversation, they had clearly invented the act. They redefined it. They swung from the chandelier while oiled up with party hats on their tits and their kilts up to their waists. Ok, I made the last part up but that is what they would have you believe. They were my first introduction to magical sex ninjas.

With fake nails and brilliant blue contact lenses, artfully bleached hair and dark golden tans, these girls frightened me. They were full grown women; as completely sure of their place in society as wives and mothers; so exquisitely jaded. While it is common now to see these women on reality shows today, at the time (read: in 1997 the year cell phones hit the Canadian market) they were quite literally aliens. I felt like they should attend different classes than me because nothing I was learning would ever be applicable to their strange world. They were on a first name basis with their mothers. They had prescriptions for valium for “stress”. They laughed about buying fur coats “by mistake”. They went “clubbing” on the weekend (I term I had never heard before). They already knew complex games of sexual politics; who to sleep with to make another jealous, or to make another want them back and how to improve their position through choice of sexual partner. I had so little in common with them, it was laughable. Furthermore, I wanted nothing to do with them because I didn’t take them seriously. I couldn’t see how in the world anyone could. It was my first introduction to men and their desire to see something extraordinary, rather than authentic. It was a valuable lesson.

Magical Sex Ninjas believe that ~ like the courtesans of Renaissance Europe or the harems of the Aga Khan ~ they are skilled in the ways of seduction. That they possess secret skills that not only arouse men, but make him vulnerable to her every whim. The important thing for us regular girls to know is that these skills are secret. They can’t tell us about them, can’t tell us where they learned them, it’s just really really important that we believe they exist and that someone else (not us) has mastered them, and that we never, ever will. The irony is that the younger the magical sex ninja, the more magical in sex the ninja will believe herself to be. In the same way there seems to be an inverse relationship between how attractive a man is, and how dirty his porn is. An ugly man will want a perfect 10 model to kiss him on the lips; a handsome man will want the ugly man to go down on him. Go figure.

For all the accomplishments in our civilized society, we do not have an even playing field between youth and beauty and everyone else. This imbalance is more pronounced if you add sex to the scale. As a result, young girls wield an enormous amount of power when it comes to negotiating sexual terrain, and yet they remain the most exploited. The ones that do not believe they are worthy of love. Strange, yes? But let me be clear, there is no such thing as a magical sex ninja. There are just girls who allow themselves to be victimized. You are behaving like it is the only worthwhile part of you. You are giving it away to the lowest bidder. Men don’t have a chance to undermine you; you have already beaten them to it. I think you believe that the word “tits” is the magic word, instead of please and thank you. Please believe me when I say: I’m so tired of hearing you say it that I inwardly groan. No one takes you seriously.