Dating sucks and I’m not doing it

Health - Ryan McGuire

I’ve been out of the game for a couple years, so when the idea of meeting others seemed OK again it was full of curiosity, if not a little excitement.    I quickly discovered, however, that I was doing things wrong.

My first couple interactions with girls were a big hit to the ego.  Someone I think is worthwhile just ends up not returning my call.   My friend tells me I went for a 2nd date too quickly.   Ok, I guess.

Subsequent attempts didn’t get better.  Meeting people is easy.  The problems seem to be after THEY ask ME to go out again.  Despite my best attempts to be straight forward each of these girls have canceled our dates the day of.  Wtf?

Then I get drunk and find myself having purchased an online dating subscription.  Damn it, drunk me.

That didn’t go much better.  In my limited time I searched through dozens of profiles, sent many unreturned messages, and checked all the ‘likes’ I received.  Only once do I come close to setting up a date and then, already having dealt with a reschedule, a cancellation the day before with no excuse.  Jesus.

So after ranting to friends, I questioned why I was even putting myself through this angst and constant rejection.

In my 20’s I questioned what was wrong with me when I didn’t have a girlfriend.  Why didn’t anyone want me?  Would I ever find my life partner?

In my 30’s I don’t really seem to care.  It’s not that I wouldn’t be interested if something came along, but there is so much time and energy wasted that I could be spending elsewhere.

And so I am.

Our dating game is broken.  After studying all the things to do and say, when and how, with how much fervor or by acting like I don’t give a rat’s ass about them I’ve noticed that yea, some of those things work but… it’s dumb and despite some professional’s statements that yes, it is, but it’s a requirement to succeed… well that just sounds like a challenge and I’m up for those.

I’m taking a 3 month spell of no dates, at all.  When I’m asked I’ll now respond with “Sorry, I don’t do dates until I know you for 90 days.”

This frees me up to, well, date myself.  I’m fucking awesome, so it’s actually exciting.  I’ll be going out with myself, getting drinks, and essentially just spending some quality time alone, with me, the BEST date.


Number One Fan

Gold Dust01““Dreaming” people say is a waste of time,
Apparently they will never come true.
I have proof dreams can be reality.
Because when in reality, my dream was finding you.
Wishing is said to be a lost hope,
Something hoped for but one never sees
I don’t understand how this can be told
When I wished a perfect girl suddenly you came to be.

Some people search their entire life,
Trying to catch a glimpse of an angel.
Its apparent they’ve never met you,
Someone intelligent, sweet and beautiful.

Desires are something everyone possesses,
They are things in life that completes us by far.
I have but only one true desire,
To tell you just how amazing and special you are.

We all have so many thoughts in our head,
Some of our thoughts will never part.
There is only one thing I can’t stop thinking about,
That’s of you, and your beautiful heart.

I hope you know how amazing you are,
And how special you make people feel.
You are truly one in a million,
Everything I’ve said about you is so real.

You don’t deserve anything less than the best,
So be all that you can.
I will always be there for you,
For you see, I am your number one fan.”

-Brandon Hall
*Brandon Hall is a guest writer from Portland, OR and we’d love to hear your take on his work.  Should we press for more of his work?  Like and Comment below.

Have Some Respect…

FuckIt01One of life’s biggest dilemmas seems to be repeating our mistakes.   We all have instances in our own lives and even friends who let it actually define them.  Who among us hasn’t been dumped/hurt by someone only to give them another chance and **shock!** got dumped/hurt again!?  What a pain!  What the hell!?  Actually, we should have expected it.  Why?

Learn some damn respect.  Not for others, for yourself.  A lack of it is why those mistakes keep coming back to bite us in the ass.  While most of us stroll through our days acting like self-respecting adults, the fact is we’re a bit insecure and caring about things we should let slide by the wayside.  We all battle against repeating mistakes because of the “complexity” that “no one would understand” when in reality the scenario is quite simple.

Think about this… You start a new job which promises to pay well every other week.  You work your butt off the first two weeks, hit goals and learn quickly.  After your first two weeks… no paycheck.  What the heck?  Your boss has a ton of excuses and promises to pay soon, maybe even give a bonus on your next check for the hassle.  Firstly, how many of us would bail right now??  Probably a few, specifically those who know their work is worth timely pay and realize they can be employed in a myriad of places.  You could say it’s those who place high value on their work.   But some of us… we’ll keep on for another two weeks and see what happens.  I mean, they said they’ll bonus us for the hassle.  Worth the wait, right!?

The next two weeks pass quickly.  We kick even more butt, breakeven more company goals.  5pm on Friday comes aaand… paytime!  Right?  Urgently scuttling to our boss’s office proves of little worth as he notifies us paychecks won’t be coming again because of blah blah blah. This is the moment most of us leave for good, regardless of the excuses.  You know your value and the fact it’s been degraded by this employer is nonsense!  Even when the boss comes back and offers even more money and a bigger bonus you tell him to go shove it up (somewhere) and walk away without regret.


Why?  Self respect.  We don’t allow such intolerable behavior in your work life so why then does it feel so hard to have the same respect when it comes to matters of the heart?  We’ll tell employers they’re assholes for expecting our continued effort without pay, yet we tell our lovers it’s ok to continually promise something that’s never delivered upon.  This just isn’t right.

Simply put, we need more respect and less doubt when it comes to our personal beings.  This directly impacts the type of relationship we’ll have.  It’s easy when you’re first person to not realize your value.  Actually, we tend to be our own worst critics.  I struggled with it for years.  It led to relationships that kept ending poorly, excuses as to why it wouldn’t happen again, and another chance to someone who didn’t deserve it.  And guess what?  It happened right over again!  It led to not putting myself out there when opportunities I deserved came by; Partly because I was wasting time with someone sub-standard and also that I didn’t think I was worth what I’d always dreamed of.  The repetitive nature almost destroyed my self worth and made me think I deserved the actions.  I don’t.  You don’t.

The answer is simple to know and yet difficult to act upon.  Start treating yourself like you’re worthwhile.  The only person in this world who will stick up for yourself is you.  It’s when you begin doubting that your world begins to crumble.  Just as you wouldn’t continue to work without pay, why continue that relationship that constantly under delivers?  Why continually believe things will change when history shows they repeat themselves?

Damn it, grow a pair.  Have respect for yourself.  Stop giving a fuck.  Take those things that have been stringing you along and get rid of them once and for all.  Move on and demand the next person treats you with every ounce of respect you’ve ever hoped for.  You’ll be amazed at the relief.


Deserving a 2nd Chance

_The man on top____ - Vince Lombardi [736x840]_BaconitI used to think that my generosity in giving people 2nd chances was a good thing.  Of course it would be, right?  Quickly I noticed this to be more of a liability than a help in the dating scene.  More often than I’d like to admit I found myself with women who abused my giving of time, love, and money.  It wasn’t until the 3rd or 4th exploitation that I’d man up and stick up for myself, including cutting them my life if needed.  Why do we sometimes seem to attract the wrong people?  And why is it we continue to fall similar tricks over and over?  It wasn’t until my late twenties I came to the realization in fact those 2nd opportunities was, in fact, a positive trait and one of many kindhearted individuals.  The problem lied not with giving that additional chance, but who it was beeing given to.

Many of us believe the best in our significant others.  They are – especially in the moment – some of the most important people in our lives.  After growing up as somewhat of a black sheep, I wouldn’t be where I am today without  getting the chance to apologize and prove my merit.  We’ve all been there which makes it easy to forgive another.  We trust our partners and can’t imagine they’d have anything but out best intentions at heart.  It’s easy to give more chances when perhaps it’s small and continuous misconduct.  Many of us are wise enough to see direct abuse yet meager, intermittent events (which will range from person to person) can fool even the best of us.  Our hope lies in learning to recognize the other person’s intentions and efforts after the fact.Out of suffering_____Gibran Khalil Gibran [ 720x480 ]_Baconit

People who deserve a 2nd chance know they need it.  They’re able to recognize, admit wrongdoing, and ask for it.  Think about when you make a mistake with your friends…  You want to fix it.  You feel horrible!  This is and always will be the same for people who care about each other.  And when you want to fix a problem badly enough, you usually do.  This means if regret is not actively, aggressively shown then another chance may not have the intended results.  What will happen?  Typically, it will all end the same as before.  And what is the definition of insanity?  Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.  Take heart of this, and the next time a significant other or potential partner does you wrong make sure they (willingly) express their full grief and regret of causing you pain.  If they don’t, consider holding off on that 2nd chance.


This town is booming.

Portland Bridges01

It may have been while skimming down the street in SE on a fixie bike, seemingly passing other bicycles on the city streets more often than cars, only to run point blank into four closed street being used to paint giant murals in the intersection by kids, artists, and passerby’s… It could have been during a well deserved trip to enjoy a fine whiskey at one of twenty dozen neighborhood bars of NE… or perhaps it was while trying to decide which countries delicacies to indulge upon considering the vast variety of food choices in NW… whenever it was I know for sure how booming this town is right now.  As a wannabe Oregonian of 8 years there are always stories floating about of how Portland “used to be”, but I’m happy to be around now.  Believe it, we’re one of the most hip cities in the country.  We have music, food, events, nature… you name it.  We even have our own TV show.

SE Portland 01

While traveling it’s good nature to tell folks that our city is completely full and not accepting new applicants, or simply it’s the most horrendous place I’ve ever loved to live.  We must keep it a secret!  Other parts of the country truly believe we are where hipsters breed, the weirdos hang out, and fashion goes to die.  And in all reality, it’s sort of true.  That’s what we love about it though, and others apparently do too. We’re the #10 fastest growing city in the country.

We’re well paid too, with a median salary of $60,000.  That would explain all the new homes going up in what used to be backyards – building up and sporting solar panels.  It would also explain poverty and crime getting pushed outward towards Gresham.  The nice thing is we’re not over crowded like bigger cities and there’s room to grow – or boom, you might say.  My next thoughts? How long we’ll have until we think again of how Portland “used to be”.



A Veritable Quirk

Felt green curtains.  They’re what I’m staring at as I enter the door of Veritable Quandary, a quaint restaurant, highly decorated in an old brick building, surrounded by plants and hardly looking large enough to feed 15 people rather than 100+.   I push aside the curtains and duck into the room to find what I’d almost recall as an old English pub (classy and clean, of course).  A long wooden bar takes up half the space and but a few small booths line the other wall.  It’s packed.  People are celebrating, sauntering on in conversation about friends and work.  As you pass by the tall bar stools and past the active and crowded kitchen, a hostess meets you and guides you down the stairs and into the main dining area.  Who knew this was back here?  There’s even a wine cellar with a single round table which can be reserved for your big events.


The outdoors is amazing still.  Gated and sitting beside a grass field rather than other buildings, the patio leaves you feeling at home.  Denny, the long time owner who brought the wonderful restaurant here in  1971 does all of the gardening himself, taking care of and positioning every plant you see.   While great if you can find a spot, it’s difficult when the sun is out and events are happening near the waterfront.


A glance at the menu will have most mouths watering.  Walu walu, free-range lamb and chicken, quail egg salads… all sourced from local companies.  And please, feel free to be adventurous tonight.  The quality of ingredients won’t let you down.  Finding out the lobster mushrooms in my dish cost more than the prime cut of meat? Pretty excellent.  There are a number of well-tuned individuals running the kitchen as well.  Props go to Annie, the chef.  Her amazing skill and creative mind keep the food exciting and her staff seem to have nothing but love for the woman.


Pricing can get up there when aiming to have a big meal and yes, you should go to have a big meal.  Get anything that looks good.  I didn’t get the feeling itmes were overpriced however, which is nice.  Based upon the quality and quantity, have always left happy.   A great place for dates and those looking to broaden horizons.  We highly recommend the Veritable Quandary and will continue to go back ourselves.