Thursday, December 9, 2010

it's soooooo me...

“Oh My God! Look at this! You MUST buy it!” my friend exclaimed, “It’s soooooooooo you!”

I was out doing some good ol’ multi tasking. Social interaction with friends and Christmas shopping. Popping in and out of stores not really task oriented, just getting ideas. And picking up some things, mostly for myself, along the way.

The sweater that my friend held up was cute. But not for me. There were several things standing in the way of it ‘being for me’. One was it was pink. I don’t do pink. Secondly, cascading down the front was a plethora of sparkly sequins. I don’t do sequins. And third, it was cropped. I don’t do cropped.

As she stood three exclaiming how purrrrfect this would be to wear to a holiday party “with grey straight leg jeans tucked into over the knee boots” I wondered how well my friend really knew me. I mean, I’ve known her for years, but did she really know me?

Grey jeans? Me?
Tucked into boots? Over the knee high boots at that.

I don’t think so. The only thing that was me about that sweater was that it was a cardigan. I do do cardigans. But they must be rather classic in style and usually in shades of gray or black. Pink? Um, no.

Over the years I’ve met many a person that has claimed “Oh Nancy, I know you.” Some really do and some might think they do, but they really don’t. Perhaps my friend saw in that sweater a Nancy that she thinks that I should be. Pink sequins? In her eyes am I really a pink sequin donning girl?

I have a friend who wears color well. Everything that I’ve ever seen her in is brightly colored or printed. And it looks great on her. The more embellishment the better. She can pull it off. I on the other hand would feel as if that embellishment was wearing me. My style is low key, laid back, no color and classic. Delving into the dating world I question the good sense given by magazines for ‘date night dressing.’ Is this where I’m going wrong? Do I need to take their advice and wear a red dress when out on a first date as opposed to my black turtleneck or white non-iron French cuff shirt?

Is that what is expected of me? Is that what men want?

I find reading such things as I wait for my manicure to dry ridiculous. Maybe it might be good advice for some young girl who hasn’t quite found her own sense of style yet, but I find dressing in a manner unlike you to be somewhat absurd. What if I did show up for a first date in a red dress. Perhaps my date would like that kind of low cut style and color. But that’s not who I really am. So who have I fooled? Myself? Him? Would I now need to change my entire wardrobe and outlook on clothing in order to dress to impress? Do I really wish to attract a man with said red dress as opposed to the real me?

I like red dresses, don't get me wrong. Just in magazines or on other people. It’s not who I am. Or at least the me who I have always thought I was.

I’ve been trying in these past few months to do things outside of my norm. I went out to eat the other night just by myself. I used to travel to Cincinnati quite often for work. I would stay in a hotel downtown. Once the store closed I would go to one of the nice restaurants in the square and enjoy a good meal before retiring for the night. There were groups of men after work, groups of females finished with their shopping and romantic couples at most of the tables. At the bar would be men on business sitting alone having a bite to eat. I would always ask for a table. It made me uncomfortable to saddle up to the bar by myself. Like I was there to pick someone up or something. Blame it on the movies I’ve seen, but my sitting at the bar alone all Sharon Stone-esque just isn’t quite my bag.

As I sat, alone, waiting for my meal I would hear others coming in. “A table for two, please” a man said with a girl hanging on his arm. Bah. She was wearing a red dress. Go figure.

I signed up for an internet dating site. They send daily ‘matches’. I read some of the profiles and then archive them. Some of the guys I don’t even read their profiles. One look at the picture they’ve uploaded to ‘attract their mate’ turns me off to the extent that I almost feel compelled to message them to let them know it’s not working. Really? That’s the best picture you can find or get your hands on of yourself? Tell me it isn’t so.

These poor souls. These saps. These losers…and I hate to say that, but it’s true. The main profile picture of one guy standing in his garden (ok, he works for a greenhouse…so I get the garden thing) in an ill-fitting t-shirt that shows off nothing except his beer gut. Or the guy that obviously set up his camera on his dresser in his bedroom to self timer, ran in front and put his leg up on the bed, elbow on his knee. Did he realize that his shoes were on the bed and he was in his socks? Did he take into consideration that the old floral bedspread that his wife or past girlfriend bought for him might not give off the ‘strong masculine’ ideal that his pose is trying so hard to present? Did he take into consideration that there was a cheap oval mirror in the corner of the room that reflected both his flat ass and the camera on the dresser that still held his wedding photo?

I don’t think so.
These aren't the men for me. How would I got 'matched' with them in the first place amazes me.

I didn’t message him. Although I should. Just to let him know. I figure that many people might not see all the detail in his photo, but I did. Can you say ‘archive’? Yup. As fast as my fingers could manage it.

I have met a couple of people through the site. A nice New Zealand man who plays professional squash. In Cleveland? Who knew such a creature existed? He’s got a nice smile and a tremendous accent. Is it a match made in heaven? No. I don’t see myself smiling in the photos of the log-in page with a ‘Nancy and Ray ~ matched November 2, 2010’ anytime soon. But to share a pint or two…sure thing. Larry was a nice man. Really nice man. But I just wasn’t attracted to him. And his familiarity in conversation wanting to make me dinner and rub my feet just kindof weirded me out. I mean if we were IN a relationship, sure. But I met you once for pizza. I don’t want to come to your home for a second date. His stories of others he’s met online were interesting, but they all made references to sex in some form or another. There was one where the woman posted photos of herself that turned out to be at least 20 years ago. When he told her he felt duped, that he didn’t want to date her because he thought he was meeting the woman with the red hair, not gray…she said, “so do you just want to have sex then?”

Funny? Yeah…no, weird. Why do all your stories have sexual inneuendos to them. Sorry Larry, I don’t want to have sex with you. You’re a really, really nice guy and all, but no nookie from Nancy. Sorry.

I’ll keep looking. At least until my subscription runs out. I highly doubt I will renew. Although the photos and profiles thus presented have been highly entertaining. One guy in Strongsville seemed promising. We went through the question process. He was complimentary. He seemed to have his shit together and then when it came time for ‘open communication’ he just phoofed. Nothing. Gone. I could see that he would check my profile every few days or so…but I couldn’t mail him. I had to wait for his response and none was forthcoming. Every three days he would look at my profile, but he wouldn’t send a message. I found that odd. And slightly troubling. It made me feel sort of angry in a way as well. What kind of game was he playing? And if fact he was playing games…then would I want to meet him anyway? Perhaps he was in communication with someone else and waiting to see if that match panned out. That’s fine. That’s even cool for you Steven of Strongsville…but you know what, let me know! Just send a message stating that and guess what, I’d probably wait to see fi it worked out between you and if not, then lets have a glass of wine. Or coffee. But nope. Just lurking my profile page. So I closed him. Take that. Good luck to you, buddy.

Maybe I will buy that sweater after all.
But in black.

Maybe it’s time to break out some sequins and sparkle on my next pint with Ray. Who knows, maybe that hidden me that my friend seems to know should come out and play.

But I am not buying gray jeans.
Or tucking them into boots. Especially over the knee high ones.

I’ll save those for when I wear red.


  1. I always smile at those people who say that they "know" me.

    Aren't dating sites depressing? I tried them over a decade ago, when they were in their infancy. It was worse then, because by definition only computer geeks frequented them, and they were definitely of a particularly unattractive genre. Now losers of all stripes frequent them, so you have a better selection. ;-) I find that nothing works better to meet someone special than doing fun things in public (I don't know... group tours at museums, book signings, golf, shooting, barn raisings, nature hikes, political campaigns, volunteering). By focusing on an activity and not on each other, you can get to know someone without that dating pressure. I don't know anyone who met their mate in a bar and it turned out happy. They may still be together (I know three couples who met in bars) but they're unhappy. I know four couples who met online. They're so-so happy. People who met doing group activities, though, are the happiest in my experience.

    I like your black/gray/monotone wardrobe. I prefer that stuff too, but I wear what my darling wife tells me to wear (blues and yellows and beiges work for me, she says). I'm color-blind, so I don't really care.

  2. PS - I met my darling wife garage-saleing. I was donating stuff to the sale for a friend of hers, and she was running the sale. Then she found out I was redoing my yard, and she offered to let me use her employee discount at a nursery she worked at. I visited her every weekend for months and bought stuff. Then I kept visiting her and NOT buying stuff. Then we went to a Highland Games (Celtic festival), listened to bagpipes, cried, and bonded. And the rest is history. I don't think we ever officially dated.

  3. I'm with you on the wardrobe choices; I'm just not a red those good old earth tones. And good luck with the online dating, always interesting if not frustrating.

  4. You are so right about the profile pictures on dating sites... are these guys serious?

  5. I've long giving up on dating sites and dating in general - I guess its just not meant to be for me.

    But for you - hey... black turtlenecks? Ugh... :) Whose funeral were you attending before (or after) this date? C'mon girl... you are a sexy, smart, sassy woman... sell it with a little LIFE... and that means color!

    ..but not pink and nooooooo not sequins!!!!

  6. Dating sites-ugh. Been there done that. Not going again.

    Personally I think your wardrobe is fine! I'm like that too. But lately I have ventured out on the blingy side. Got my colors, with glitter. I have modest shirts with blacks, grays and red with glitter, olive green, gray and black with glitter. Purple with beads. They cover and are cute. I used to just wear blacks, browns and grays. This are a little more fun! Maybe look for YOUR colors with bling!

  7. Two songs popped into my head reading this, because I agree so much with the wardrobe thing:
    I gotta be me.... and I did it MY way...
    I sing them in my head all the time, because I'm crazy like that. If I dress outside my comfort zone, I feel silly or like I'm acting in a play. And comfort is my first rule of style these days. Your style sounds classic and I'd stick with it if I were you.
    It's a crying shame it's not easier for intelligent, interesting single people to find each other. I'm glad you're finding the humor at least in the profiles you've seen. But I'm thinking there's got to be someone out there just right for you, who wears just the right clothes that suit him too. If you go for the red dress or the gray jeans, you might miss out on him! Good luck with everything!

  8. I tried a dating site years ago and I wondered if they had even read any of my very long interview to find the perfect match for me. They sent me matches that were not a fit--even if you didn't look at the pictures (some of which are pretty funny, yes--like half a picture with the old wife/girlfriend cut out) or they didn't post one. But, I have to say, it was very entertaining to read them. ;)

    Be yourself. Wear what you feel comfortable in and what you like. You want to meet someone who is just right for you--so you have to just be you, right? :):)

  9. I agree with you about clothing full of embellishments - I feel like the are wearing me. I'm pretty conservative with my clothes. It wasn't always that way, but I leave the sequins and the hot pink for those that feel good in them, or think they do, or something. I had over the knee pirate boots when I was sixteen. That was a loooooong time ago!

  10. Ha! At least you got matches. I tried out when I was 19, then again this year. Both times they told me I was un-matchable.

  11. This is why I hate when people buy me clothes. My wife does very well, but others... not so much. I'm kind of a plain, jeans-and-a-nice-shirt kinda guy. I find the outfits that some women wear and consider "fashion" to be hysterical. So no... to answer your question, we don't expect women to dress like that. You're great just the way you are. :)

  12. Careful with those over-the-knee boots. You can end up looking like a pirate. Aaarrr!


  13. I remember 40 yrs. ago living in Buffalo, NY and wearing only black, brown, navy blue and dark greens. Those were the staples of your wardrobe because it was always cold and dreary. When I moved to CA everyone was wearing a lot of light colors all year round.

    About that red dress; I don't think I've ever owned a red dress. I stick with simple, basic designs with light colors or bright colors.

  14. I wear colors, lots of them. But I still think neutrals are classier. As to dating? Oh man, I am so so so happy I'm out of that. I wasn't good at it and being alone was just so much better I thought. Until I accidentally met the man who is now my Hub.

  15. I like pink and sequins, but not together! It sounds like a stage costume for a burlesque dancer. I do have a red dress, I only wear it for special occasions, if I was single I wouldn't wear it for a date.
    Larry sounds like a perv, a nice perv, but still a perv. But Ray sounds mighty interesting! Good luck!

  16. Never been on a dating site due to my marital status but it sounds like a drag for the most part. old pictures and lies and sexual must be horribly confusing. As usual I loved your post. you have a gift. Being able to put words on (electronic) paper and convey your thoughts exactly as you wish must be nice. I sometimes get them all jumbled up and thus create more questions than answers. Have a lovely day!

  17. There is no blame
    I release the need to blame anyone, including myself. We all doing the best that we can with the understanding, knowledge and awareness we have.

  18. OK that is hilarious! Sorry but I don't know you personally but even I know you don't wear pink!

    On a different note, instead of buying a pink cardi, how about you start small? Maybe a nice scarf in a bright color or a belt in a bright color/pattern? Start small, it'll take you out of your comfort zone and not be as scary. Maybe for Halloween you can be a 60's throw back and wear over the knee boots. Otherwise I see no reason to wear something only Julia Roberts would wear in Pretty Woman. And no she did not look good either. That's why a "prostitute" was wearing them in the movie ;P

    Though you would probably class them up ;D

    Good luck with the sequin thing!

  19. If nothing else from your subscription, it's been quite a sourceof entertainment. I always find it amusing how people pretend to be someone else to catch someone and then shebang,,,back to who they really are and the other person is flaberghasted! Yes, I see you in timeless, classic clothes as being you, but I know you'd shine in that red as well! (Don't think I'd go with the sequins either!)

  20. I wouldn't wear sequins either... maybe (MAAYBE) pink, but not intentionally! I love your determination and sense of humor! your "matches" are funny! Don't give up! you will find someone who likes the lady in black ;)

  21. Oh girl, it seems so wrong to laugh at your plight, but I just can't help it. I do not envy you one bit with the whole dating game. My theory is this, if you don't like it you don't have to look at it. They can take you like you are or leave! If you want black, wear it. Sequins or no, you are beautiful inside and out and certainly don't need any sparkle bits to catch the right man. Just do me a favor? If you go for the red dress, we must have photos ok? lol

  22. I do not get over here nearly enough but when I do get a chance to visit, I know why I was drawn to your blog to start with! Maybe you need to buy that sweater in red??!!

  23. You go, girl! Don't ever compromise, not even your sense of style. Your blog is still the same humorous, classy writing I remember. It's nice that some things stay the same :)

  24. ..just popping in to wish you well over this festive

  25. Very funny -- I, too, have wondered at the people that say, Oh, Pearl, this is so you; and I'm looking at it wondering, who the heck do you think I am, anyway?!

    Cropped cardigans rarely look good on anyone unless you're terribly fit and have particularly fantastic legs/ass.

    I think I may just be bitter about that... :-)


  26. Great job here. I really enjoyed what you had to say. Keep going because you definitely bring a new voice to this subject.

  27. The Woman in Red is a 1984 romantic comedy film starring and directed by Gene Wilder.


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