Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Once a Sucker...

Some might say I’m a huge sucker.  I prefer to say that I have a huge heart.  The difference?  Perspective.  Well, that, and the fact that having a huge heart makes me a good person, while saying I’m a sucker, makes me a……sucker. 

For instance – I once had a friend who was up all night doing Wild Turkey shots and called me at 4 am because she was out of cigarettes.  Now, I’m not a smoker.  So, at 4 am on a work day, I got up, got dressed, drove to the store, purchased a pack of cigarettes and delivered them to her at her house.  See? Big heart. 

Another glowing example –  In college I had a strong-willed boyfriend who wouldn’t let me break up with him. (yes, just like the Seinfeld episode where George’s girlfriend didn’t accept his breakup)  So instead of making waves and upsetting my bi-polar friend, I stayed with him for four more glorious, strong-willed months.  I say again – BIG HEART!

But I'm here to tell you, people can change.  Although my past might suggest that I was a bit of a doormat, a yes-man, a chump, a schmo....today I’m a much different person! (unless you don’t want me to be)

As had become customary for me, I woke up and checked my phone for the f(ing)Nonharmonious email that would say, "The one you've been looking for could be right inside this email."  How exciting!  After grabbing my coffee, I headed back to my office and anxiously logged into my account to see who the online dating gods (read random computer picks) had decided I could potentially begin my new life with.  Would it be Mike, Bryce, Alan, Aiden? 

As I read their various profiles, one in particular really resonated with me.  Typically, desperation doesn’t make my “Top 10 Traits I Look for in a Guy.”  But for whatever reason, (sucker) when I read Alan’s profile, I didn’t see it as desperation - but rather a self-deprecating, honest approach as to where he was in life and what he missed about being in a relationship.  (let me show you how beautiful it can be again)   

Where is that therapist’s phone number?

Alan was recently divorced with two children; a 1 year old and a 4 year old.  His profile was painfully honest.  He was previously in a career that kept him from home and family too often, but recently switched vocations to allow him more time with his boys.  The part that really struck me read:

"I'm skeptical of the online dating thing, but with my career and my current situation in life, I don't get out to meet people.  "I guess what it boils down to, is that I'm lonely."

Where, oh where is that therapist's number?

Alan actually sent me the first communication - a stock ice-breaker that said, "Love your smile!"  I never know how to respond to these, because you have to respond with another ice-breaker.  My choices were, "Your profile brought a smile to my face," "Wink," (uh, no) "Just wanted to say hi!" or "I'd love to chat."

I ended up going with "Your profile brought a smile to my face," but then we were just sort of stuck in mutual gratification land.    I love your smile.  Well I love your profile, which brought that smile that you love to my face.  Well that's good because I love your smile...see what I mean?  There was no logical starting point to our next round of communication.  Thank goodness he took the initiative and sent me an email which simply said, "What's your phone number so I can text you?"  Huh.  That was rather anticlimactic, but I responded with my number, anyway.  I didn't hear from him for 6 days.


Alan (text) - Hey, Karen.  When do I get to meet you in person?

Karen (text)  - Well, I don't really know anything about you since we skipped all the steps.  Would you like to talk and see if we're even compatible first?

Alan (text)  -  I won't know until I meet you in person whether there's chemistry or not.  No sense in wasting any time, you free tomorrow night?

Great, another serial texter.  But I could respect the chemistry part as you never know until you actually spend time with someone if there's chemistry or not, so I agreed to meet him the next night.

Alan was much stockier in person than he was in his pictures, but I'm not so shallow that I was willing to end a date over 25 extra lbs.  Additionally, he was the kind of guy I pictured pointing the "finger/thumb gun" my way whilst doing the "chk-chk" sound.  Cheesy? Yes.  Date ender?  No.

Now, his gum chewing?  That was another story.  And this was no normal gum-chewing session. (not that even normal gum-chewing would have been acceptable on a first date)

This particular brand of chewing I can only describe as athletic in nature.  Imagine, if you will, an episode of gum-chewing where the object is to touch your tongue to your earlobe with each mandibular movement.  I mean, the unnatural facial activity this guy had going on would have been impressive had we only been in some sort of unnatural facial activity competition. 

After an hour and a half of conversation, and fighting through the exhausting gum-chewing marathon, our date was coming to a close.  Although I didn't feel any chemistry yet, he ended up being a nice enough guy and I felt that he had a good heart.  So I decided I would give him another shot if he asked me out again. (sucker) 

Karen - "I had a good time tonight."  Thank you."

Alan - "I had a good time, too."  Maybe we could do this again sometime?"

Karen - "I'd like that - you have my number."

And we gave each other a hug goodbye.

I got in the car and made my way home, excited that I had met a sweet guy who I didn't want to immediately kick to the curb.

<text chime>

Awwww - a text from Alan:

Alan (text) - Is it wrong that I want to go to the nearest hotel and get naked with you?


I swear I looked at that text for 5 solid minutes trying to find the "sweet" in it....



  1. This episode of "damn" brings to mind one of my favorite expressions, uttered by none other than YOU when we were in Alabama for Aunt Madge's wedding. You and Steve were snarking at each other like, well, good siblings and you called him "cud boy" because he was chewing gum. Now I am quite sure he was not chewing in any way similar to "Alan," but damn if I don't laugh every time I think of that moment!

    And anyway, I'm trying to focus on that rather than his final text. Please...

  2. Seriously? There should be an app that punches a guy in the face when he hits send on a text like that.
    As for the sucker (big heart) thing, I'm proof that can it swing in your favor sometimes. My hubby had a legitimate sob story when we met. My bff pulled me aside and said, "He's not a puppy for you to save." She tried to sneak me out of the bar. He chased me down. Ended up being the LOVE of my life. So go on with you're big hearted self!

  3. Kate! How funny - I totally forgot about that! Steve had nothing on this guy...it was obnoxious! And, yes, the text...really?

    OkieMama - I am going to see if I can get working on that app! I'm so glad to hear a success story from another big-heart - this gives me hope!

  4. First of all, I love that you gave him the benefit of the doubt and didn't "judge" him. Second of all, do you blame the man for wanting to completely hump, I mean, jump you?! You are pretty hot. But, the gum-chewing icky mouth noise thing? Um...yeah. Def a deal breaker!

  5. Hard to believe that you have a hard time finding a date, KW. You look fantastic (well, for an old lady that is).
    If you didn't live in TX, and I wasn't happily married with a six year old, I would surely be in your front yard with a boom box over my head, playing some Peter Gabriel song really loud.

    Or something like that.

  6. Upon reading this a second time, I just want to clear up that I am married WITH a 6 year old, not TO a six year old.
    Remember, some guys waste years of their lives trying to somehow learn suaveness. Then there are guys like me - I came in to this world reeking of innate suavility, and I shall go to my grave with little more suavitic charm that I arrived with. You know, money, possessions, organs...you can't take when you go, but when I make my transition and meet St. Guido at the gates of Suavana, I know that my genetics, AND my extensive study of suavanetics will assure my entry to the jewel encrusted gates.
    I feel as if I was truly born under a suave sign.