“You Wear Right Through Your Boots”

I remember being 17 and driving down to New Haven to see Ani DiFranco at the Palace. My friend, Patrick, and I were so excited. After the show we met a girl named Gina who “lived on faith” and kissed a homeless guy in Dunkin’ Donuts. We were so young, had so much energy and were so earnest and hopeful. That seems like a million years ago — I barely recognize those kids. To paraphrase Ms. DiFranco, “We’ve worn right through our boots.”

Graduations and class reunions have come and gone along with a thousand bad days, and a thousand goods days. New life. New love. Death. Heartbreak. Continue reading

Pondering Pick-Ups

By praram, Flickr Creative Commons

I’ve recently started watching How I Met Your Mother on Netflix. In marginally related news, I was browsing Craigslist as research for a blog post, and this all got me thinking about a conversation I had at dinner with a couple of friends last week. We were discussing an experiment we’d conducted where three of us posted dating profiles online. I got easily three times as many messages as the two guys combined. This isn’t surprising; girls are used to being on the receiving end of romantic overtures.

The more I thought about it though — in the context of How I Met Your Mother and creepy Craigslist personal ads — the more I realized I couldn’t remember the last time I’d been straight up asked out in a real life situation. It might actually have been the prom… or by this tiny little gnome of a man I met in New York, who wore a ridiculous hat every day. But in TV Land Ted Mosby is constantly asking girls out in elevators, in bars, at the doctor’s office, etc. I just don’t believe this happens any more, which is funny because a quick perusal of any dating site will turn up hundreds of profiles with guys claiming they just don’t know where to meet women any more. Continue reading

A Power Shift?

Illustration from Slate's "Sex is Cheap"

Two of my best friends are celebrating important milestones. One is just days away from giving birth to her first child. The other got engaged on Saturday. So, I started reading this Slate article through the eyes of someone who is currently surrounded by evidence of other people’s major life commitments. While reading Slate’s “Sex is Cheap,” I kept thinking about an NPR show I listened to about “emerging adulthood” this morning, and couldn’t help but think of them as somehow connected.

The Slate article says:

The terms of contemporary sexual relationships favor men and what they want in relationships, not just despite the fact that what they have to offer has diminished, but in part because of it. And it’s all thanks to supply and demand.

Anyone who has been dating recently knows that much of this is true. There is nothing more stunning than young men’s complete unwillingness to put any real effort into dating. Continue reading

Can’t win ’em all…or at all

I was cleaning out my inbox this evening and came across an article I’d sent to myself quite some time ago, called Dating 101: Why Guys Dump Girls They Dig. I gave it a quick read, and realized it’s sort of like the opposite of that literary atrocity He’s Just Not That Into You (I’m being bombarded with the commercials for the movie version as I write). After reading the article, what I came away with was this: You just can’t win. Continue reading