Tuesday, November 18, 2008

And that's why I'm still single.

My friend Sarah and I get together 2-3 times a week to work out. Along with exercising, these sessions are mostly about catching up and talking about our lives - one part of our lives in particular really. I'd say the breakdown of our conversations is something like this:

5% how was your day
5% miscellaneous
90% men/dating

We talk about guys we're interested in, dates we go on (Sarah has the most hilarious date stories of anyone I know), and dissect much more than we actually should. Should I confess that? (Too late.) We talk about the good and the bad. But one thing I've noticed lately is that many of our stories or complaints end with the conclusion, "....And that's why I'm still single."

Now, I should make it clear that we take equal responsibilty for things occassionally going badly - we don't just blame the guys. Recently I told a story which upon telling, made me realize that I handled a certain situation badly. We laugh sometimes when we realize that we probably don't always know what we're doing in the dating department (and that's why we're still single!). I mean, why else would two smart, fun, attractive, humble women still be single, right?

In thinking about this, I've come up with two solutions to solve my dating problems. One: ask a guy friend to go on a date with me. I'd tell him up front that it was a "teaching" date, but we'd never mention that while on the date - otherwise it wouldn't be natural (as if anyone can be "natural" on a date). He would observe my dating behavior and at the end give me feedback. Of course, to make it realistic, he'd pay for the date. I mean, it'd have to feel real, right?

The only problem with this one is that if he gives me negative feedback, I might get mad and try to break up with him. Then he'd have to remind me that we're just friends and let's face it - things might be awkward for awhile.

My second idea is to do what George Costanza from Seinfeld did at one point, and that is to do everything the opposite of what my instincts tell me. If it worked for George, it's guaranteed to work for me, right? For example, if I feel like I should not call a guy, I'll call him. If I am too scared to talk to him, I'll approach him. Um... this one sounds like a lot more work than the first one and much scarier.

See what I mean? Already I'm rejecting two perfectly good, reasonable ideas. One thing is for sure though, in discussing our dating lives Sarah and I have learned something important: we know what not to do, but we don't know what to do. Ok, that's not true. We don't know what not to do either. One of these days we'll figure it out, but until then, our work out sessions will have to double as dating therapy sessions. And hopefully someday these sessions won't end with the same refrain.


Katherine said...

I personally take absolutely NO responsibility for the fact that I'm still single. It's all the boys' fault. Fools. I admire your healthy attitude toward dating! I think that the teaching date is a great idea! Let me know if it works and I may give it a try. Ok, I won't, but I'll let you think I'm taking some initiative...

Amy said...

Sometimes I really wonder what in the world people find to talk about when they are no longer single...

And that's why I'm still single :)

opticwalrus said...

They talk about their kids.

I think it would be best if you had a scantron-style form for the guy to fill out at the end, that would make it feel really official.

Single Sarah :) said...

Brian, right? Actually, we've discussed having "comment cards", both for us and for the guy with whom we are on the date. :) It might be a bit odd, to pull that sucker out and require his feedback. The dilemma is that I'm fairly sure that act alone would score some low marks!

Elizabeth, well written! You definitely did justice to our plethora of workout wonderings! I think one layer of our issue is that we understand each other perfectly, and what each of us thinks/says makes total sense, but it's because we're both women...we should get a guy's perspective on the whole thing, so maybe we need to invite a male in on our weekly exercise routine! :)

PS: I do have a date tomorrow, so I'm sure I'll have a fresh batch of stories to share, likely ones that end with "...and that's why I'm still single!"

Jess said...

I think I will have no trouble finding just as many awkward conversation topics when I am married as I already do as a single person. As for why I am still single. god only knows and He won't tell me.

Jenna said...

Great post! It reminds me of my LGN (look good naked)workout days with Amy Rhodes. I'm impressed that you spend a whole 5% of your time talking about your day! Amy and I always got straight to the relationship talk.

alecia said...

Elizabeth-- next sunday, our house. we get out at 1pm as you know. Lunch/Dinner at 5ish?? I don't want you to have to drive back in too much dark if it is snowing.

Sarah said...

Love the new wintry display! Altho the snowmen in the background are, frankly, a bit creepy, with beady glowing eyes! (Oh yeah, my fussiness...that's why I'm still single!)

Elizabeth Downie said...

Good point Sarah - I hadn't even noticed those scary eyes before! I changed it to sugar plums, but this might be short term too. There are a lot of cute backgrounds to choose from!

Also, I'm thinking about Brian's idea about a form to have the guy fill out at the end of the date. I wonder what would be on that form? I'm going to think about that one. :)

Oh, and Alecia, that sounds great!

Sarah said...

Post-Date Comment Card (1st Draft)...

First impressions:
Did he/she smell nice? :)
Were you impressed or not with their choice of apparel?

What percentage of the time did you fake smile?
How interesting was the other person on a scale of 1 (hardly) to 10 (incredibly!)?

Other factors:
Is the person kind/polite to you and others you encountered?
Do you think you have "chemistry"?

Will you ask this person out again/agree to go out again?
Additional feedback?

Maybe I should market this, altho it needs a LOT of work to make it just right! Maybe multiple choice? Fill in the blank? I'm open to ideas!! :)