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Jewish Singles: Guilt

Michelle and I met the two most delightful German guys yesterday while getting manicures.  They were very sweet, extremely kind, and wonderfully interesting.  We agreed to meet for friendly drinks.

I feel like the country of Germany is very guilt ridden about the whole Hitler thing, as they very well should be.  That was dumb.  They should not have let him do that.  People got hurt, cultures got extinguished, it was not okay.

And it was fairly recent.

I knew it would come up eventually.  It always comes up eventually.  I live in a Jewish facility, I work for a Jewish company, I drink Kedem grape juice with lunch…It was bound to happen.  And I realize a person is not their former fascist dictator, and of course held nothing against him, but I still felt weird letting him know that I was Jewish.  I just avoided saying it for some reason.  Not that it mattered to anyone or would have changed anything…I just felt like once I said it there would be this elephant in the room of, “Hey, so, there’s a good chance your ancestors killed my ancestors…Nice that you admitted they were wrong…Nothing personal…Can you pass the pretzels?”

Put a Jew and a German together and the Holocaust is bound to come up eventually.  And I just really didn’t feel like discussing it over cocktails.

And it did come up, as of course I predicted, and we had a long conversation about how much he loves Jews, and I told him how much I love African Americans, and we both established that despite our countries bad reputations we are not prejudiced people.  And that was nice.  But at the same time a little weird.  It felt like making excuses for an obnoxiously drunk family member at a party.  “Oh old Uncle Jimmy, you know him.  Always committing genocide and enslaving people… I’m really sorry about that…”

Jewish Singles: Ego-Centric

Michelle and I went for drinks at a swanky place last night and got desserts as well.

Then we met the dessert chef who is apparently a very big deal.  He was listed as one of the most eligible bachelors in New York and voted ‘hottest chef’ in multiple magazines.  He was aware of this. He was a jerk.  But he was giving me free desserts.

Commence flattery.

I tried to make conversation:

“I was friends with a dessert chef in Hawaii who always complained that his girlfriends all got fat from eating his food.  Does that happen to you?”

“Nope…You just gotta use sex-ercise.”

…Classy.  You have a lot of sex.  I’m delighted that I know that about you.  He spoke with a confidence and swag employed by only men who are extremely intoxicated or trying much too hard to be cool.

He said things normal guys wouldn’t say.  Not because they’re particularly charming, but because they’re things you shouldn’t say!  Things that would get other men slapped.  But this man had a great power over women….

It wasn’t his fruity tattoos.

It wasn’t his excessive hair gel.

It was chocolate.

This man had chocolate.  And he knew it.

Four platters of dessert later we were swept off our feet.  It didn’t matter what he said.  It could be anything.  The man was a culinary genius.

My friend got his card before she left the bar.  They e-mailed back and forth until she asked him to hang out and he said in so many words, not unless you’re going to sleep with me.

It was striking that he could just BE that forward.  And women weren’t turning him down.  He knew they wouldn’t.  Women came to his restaurant for the purpose of finding him and going to bed with him.

But we were turning him down.  Because he was very rude and we are ladies and deserve to be treated as such.

Jewish Singles: You’ll Do For Now

He said he was worried about getting surgery alone, without anyone to take care of him.  I, of course, offered to fly in and take care of him after surgery.

Then we got into a conversation about the future.

“I’m gonna go to all these different cities; Costa Rica, Malibu…travel the world.”

“Won’t you get lonely?”

“Well I won’t go alone.”

I decided to give him the opportunity to say something adorable.

“Oh yea?  Who are you gonna take with you?”

The correct answer would have been, “You of course, darling.  You’re so great and awesome and special.  I’m so lucky to have you.”

But instead he said this:

“I don’t know, hopefully I’ll have a girlfriend or something.”

Me!  Right here.  The one you’re sharing your hopes and dreams with.  I am your girlfriend.  Jerk.

Okay, okay, I get it.  That’s a long time from now, we don’t know what’s gonna happen, blah-blah-blah practicality.  But I still would have appreciated the vote of confidence.

Suddenly I was feeling insecure and listening to him narrate his awesome vacation getaway with his future girlfriend.

I kinda stopped wanting to spend $200 bucks to care for him so he could recover and run off to Mexico with some hussy that’s taking my place.

So after hearing more stories about how he and his Not-Me girlfriend were going to travel the world and live happily ever after, I decided to retaliate.

“Oh yea?  Well me and future hubby will be cruisin’ down High Street on Segways.  And it’s gonna be a ton of fun.”

Take that.

It’s a difficult problem cause it’s not something I can get mad about.  It’s one of those stupid-irrational-girl-problems that just make you feel bad even though no ones actually doing anything wrong.  What would I say, “How dare you not want to marry and run away with me?”  We’ve been dating for like 2 months.  He doesn’t even know my favorite color yet.  But I still see no reason why he shouldn’t want to devote his future fantasy life to me.

It’s a tricky business when you’re talking about the future with your new boyfriend/girlfriend.  You don’t want to rush things, you want to keep things open, realistic.  Clearly you’re not about to start planning your future together anytime soon.  You’re not going to start making claims of staying together forever.  But for sake of cuteness, for sake of politeness, for common courtesy, can you please just pretend I’m the only person you ever want to be with?  At least for now…While you’re with me?  Is that so much to ask?

It’s just upsetting to hear your boyfriend talk about his life post breaking-up with you.  It’s like, “We just got together!  Can’t we wait it out a little bit?”

He had no problem about making little quips about marrying me before.  He’s from Israel so we would joke about how he’d have to get married to stay in the country and I’d say, “Uh oh, better act fast and find someone on JRetroMatch” and he’d say, “Not unless you’re on JRetroMatch.”

And yea we both knew it probably wouldn’t actually happen but it was still nice to hear.  I felt like when it comes to fancy vacations he should extend the same cute courtesy.  But nope, clearly he’s just using me for citizenship.  Lovely.

I don’t want to freak out or move things too fast, I just don’t want to feel like I’m something he’s settling for.  Like I’m not ideal, I’m just okay for now until he meets the actual love of his life later on.

I deserve better than that. :-(

Jewish Singles: A New York State of Mind

Today marks my first month living in The City.

There are certainly distinct features that mark a New Yorker.  Every New Yorker drinks coffee, has little regard for traffic signals, has a small dog which they walk around with in the morning time, and usually isn’t very nice to people (for good reason, because most people are absolutely insane.)

New York is a scary city because there are lots and lots of people and everyone is taken out of context.  You could strike up a conversation with an attractive busboy to find he was royalty in a foreign country, or talk to an innocent little old man on the subway only to discover he wants to rape and kill you.  And then there’s the bus driver with a foot fetish.  There’s always a bus driver with a foot fetish.

I was wingman-ing for a friend of mine last night who thought the waiter was cute.  We called him over and started asking him questions about his Grateful Dead belt, other favorite musicians, where he went to school, and what he studied.  Conversation was going smoothly until this sentence somehow casually came up:

“Yea, I mean, I had to be sent away to a guarded facility when I was 17…”

And we just nodded our heads like “Oh yea, totally.  That’s completely normal.”  Even though we had just realized that he had most likely been in jail or an insane asylum.  Neither was ideal.   But he was so attractive.  There was no way he could be crazy.  Maybe it was just a super hardcore elite boarding school.

There was an episode of Sex and the City where Carrie dates someone who was in an insane asylum.  The fact of the matter is, when you’re in such a big city full of everybody scattered and uprooted, there is no normality.  There is no mainstream, no guidelines, no heuristics to use to figure people out.  People become skeptical and cynical and sometimes just mean.  I’ve decided to become more open to crazy people.  After all, who am I to say that they’re crazy?  They’re quite nice and usually very conversational.  Who cares if it’s conversation about the cat they murdered last week?

It’s not like I’m all that normal, either.  I eat french fries with honey.  Now that’s a little creepy.

Jewish Singles: Taking the Words Out Of Romance

I really liked that no matter how hard Relationship Shoshana tried to be corny and romanticize things and do cute things, Jack would keep me grounded.

He was romantic, and sweet, but not sappy.  Never sappy.  And I needed that because in the long term, I hated sappy.  The mistake I made was that with every other guy I was with I’d be sappy and cutesy in the beginning.  It’s tempting to be cutesy in the beginning, you’re so infatuated and  you just want to let that take over.  So then, the guys would become sappy too.  They thought that’s what I wanted so they’d reciprocate, they’d get in the habit, and then eventually I’d stop and they’d keep going and I hated it.  I’d start to pull away and they’d get more and more sappy, profess their love more and more, trying to fix things, and I’d get bored and bored and bored and leave.

Jack was sweet, but not sappy.  He wouldn’t say ‘I miss you,’ he’d just sigh and say,

“You better hurry up and get over here.”

He wouldn’t say, “I’m thinking about you,” he’d text,

“Hey, what’s up?”

He wouldn’t say, “I love you,” he’d just passionately kiss me and say,

“Eh, you’re okay.”

…And strangely enough I much preferred it that way.

Every  guy I dated in the past was perfect on paper.  He was the nicest, the kindest, the smartest, the most considerate.  Always adoring, always sweet, and always always getting boring.  Jack is not perfect.  But he might just be perfect for me.

I’m a writer.  I work with words.  Everything I do is wordswordswords.  What I liked about Jack is that he wasn’t into words, he was into actions.  He did things, he showed emotions, he didn’t just talk about them.  He didn’t dilute feelings with words, he showed me by making me dinner, or helping me with work, or coming to visit when I was out of town.

We are opposites.  He says opposites are good for each other because you learn more from the other person; they help you grow.

And I’m growing.

I just hope I don’t grow into someone I don’t want to be.

Jewish Singles: Date My Son…Please…

There was this guy on The Today Show, Colby Brin, who’s mother made a website devoted to finding him a wife. (MarryOffYourSingleKids)

He was okay with it.  He actually took it very seriously.

Meredith Vieira asked “Do your friends tease you about this?”

“What?  Oh no, I have no idea why my friends would make fun of me.  I’m just looking for love, and I’m thirty so it’s expected that I’d let my mother start a website devoted to finding me a girlfriend and then talk about it on the Today Show.  I feel this is something completely normal.”

“So,” kindly asks Meredith Vieira, “How good a matchmaker is she?”

“Well she’s good, She set me up with someone very attractive”

…Yea that’s right, I date attractive people.

“And it had a lot of potential.”

I would do her.

“But I kinda dropped the ball on that one.”

Yea that’s right, I broke up with HER.

“I don’t date everyone my mom sets me up with.”

…I promise I’m not desperate.

If his friends are not teasing him about this his friends probably have no sense of humor.  I understand, it’s innovative, it’s for a real purpose, I get this.  But it’s also silly.  He has to recognize that it’s silly.  There are now websites where you have to write essays explaining why you’d be good for him and then a date with him is the prize.  Why is that such a great prize?  Because he’s been on tv?  I’m probably way cooler than this guy.  People should enter contests to win dates with me.  Except that I wouldn’t be okay with that, because, oh, I don’t know…I have a soul.

What would I even think of someone who wrote a thousand word essay to be with me?  I’d think “I don’t even know you.  You must be a crazy person.  I’m going to be single forever.”

And he probably will be because the second he actually FINDS somebody…Bye bye fame.  Bye Bye Today Show.  He’s famous for being single and now fame is what he has to bring to the table in a relationship.  Girls don’t want to date him because he seems like a really great guy.  They want to date him because he’s famous and they’re competitive.  Suddenly it becomes less about finding a meaningful relationship, and more about winning a prize.  It’s not “I want you because you seem great,” it’s, “I want you because a lot of other people want you.”

But once they get you, things might turn sour.  We already have a hard enough time trusting one another.  Security and trust are the most important part of a healthy serious relationship.  Once you lose those; once you have to freak out cause she just wants you cause you’re famous…Well, that sucks.

Also the Mom is practically begging, and she’s very open about it.  When you beg someone to date someone, it makes them sound a little pathetic.

“Date my son please.  Please.  I’m begging you.  No one will ever lover him.  I’m his own mother and I want to give him away.  Please just date him, get him some dinner, get him out of the house he’s driving me crazy.”

Nice try mom, but I don’t think I”ll be writing that essay any time soon.