In the Land of Losers: Vol 4 (in which I am still a loser, but now also a prostitute)

O Dante, was mine the life you’d foreseen when you were inspired with the title of your Divine Comedy?

So I don’t do dating sites. Or speed-dating, or group-dating, or blind-dating, or really any kind of dating these days, but that’s beside the point. (I have issues. Don’t judge.)  I’ve tried several dating sites, and they’re all the same: a place to make excellent pen-pals, but otherwise a MAJOR time-suck. However, a few months ago a friend of mine asked me to help him beta-test a site he’d created. He believed he’d cracked the Magical Dating Mystery Code by developing a new algorithm for matching compatibility. Since he’s a rocket scientist, literally, and he knows how to create algorithms, I thought he might actually know what he was talking about. (After all, I have to use spell-check every time I even type the word algorithm.) I told him okay, and copied and pasted my profile from my RFQ (which has gotten ZERO responses so far, btw – that’s another post), and signed up.

Being as my friend’s site is still in its testing stages (it won’t go live until 2018), there are as-of-now only 300 users. Not bad, for a beta-test group.

Of those 300 users, I have 21 “matches.” Of those 21 matches, no one had contacted me in the three months since I’d signed up — which was weird, but oddly refreshing.  My previous experiences, like most women, was that I was bombarded by 50 “winks” and 5 messages in the ten minutes it took me to sign up, and then went downhill from there.

Just… please stop. I can’t even tell the difference between all of your “winks” and my cursor-blinks anymore!

On my friend’s site, my first five “matches” were all dummy test-profiles (made obvious by screen-names, like “P-test”), and my only message-conversation was with my friend, to ascertain whether the chat-function was working properly. It was. (He was so elated!) I checked in on the site about once a week to see if there were any new functions, new matches, etc, but otherwise it was a peaceful, calm, risk-free zone.

Until 2 weeks ago.

[Note: My user-name on this site is “Jaded Sapphire.” This, because I like pretty shiny things, and I love the color blue, but I’ve become weary and leery of dating sites (jaded). Also, it’s the first thing that popped into my head when I was signing up.]

Him: Why so jaded, Sapphire?

Seriously? Ugh! I decided to overlook this lameness, since we were both fellow beta-testers. But I was at work when I got the message, so I quickly typed out the first, pithy, similarly lame response that came to me.

Me: Because green and blue make aqua, and I’m into aqua, ATM. How about you? What’s your favorite color?

His response, a few days later, was polite, but he said that he’d had some bad dating site experiences, and if I was “a professional,” that was cool, but it wasn’t his thing, and he wasn’t interested. I didn’t understand his message, and had to read it a few times before I got it.

He thought I was a hooker.

He apparently thought this because I’d used the term “ATM,” like I was asking for money or something. Whaaa—?!?

I’m in my late-40s, but I have teenagers. I listen to morning deejays on my way to work. I read blogs, and sometimes also Cosmo. I thought “ATM” (At The Moment) was as common as “ROFL.” I was torn between laughter, revulsion, and incredulity — we were among a small group of beta-testers on a site that wasn’t even yet live. What are the odds that one of our group would be one of “those” types of people? Plus, hadn’t he ever heard of Urban Dictionary? Or Google?

And had he even read my profile? What kind of self-respecting ‘ho puts out a dating profile that says she has eight kids and works for a construction firm?


I quickly disavowed his notion, whereupon he asked if I wanted to chat and possibly meet. I said no thank you. By then, I’d decided that my feelings skewed toward offended. On top of that, it was just too weird that he didn’t even google “ATM” when he didn’t know what it meant — not to mention the fact that he clearly doesn’t have teenagers. Or read Cosmo.

Besides, after something like that, it would never have worked out anyway. I’d have been too self-conscious, either (a) worrying about coming across as “too sexy,” thus leaving in question any lingering concern he might have had about whether I was lying about my “real job,” or else (b) worrying about not being sexy enough, in case he was hoping that I actually was a Woman of the Night — with an encyclopedic knowledge of sexpertise. Too much pressure.

I’ll keep you posted on the dating site, as it goes live. Not that I’ve got my fingers crossed….



In the Land of Losers: Vol 3

Hi everyone – did you miss me? Well, you didn’t miss much – still hanging out in the Land of Losers. Only lately the biggest Loser has been me. (For example, as evidenced by  last Tuesday….)

Tuesday night I went to a singles-meetup after work at a golf clubhouse. The small room was pretty packed (50-80 people), and we were all seated at tables of various sizes — either at smaller, round tables or longer rectangular ones. I was at one of the small round tables in a corner of the room. Seated there also were two other women I’d just met (they knew each other from work) and 2 other guys. A sixth seat was empty. Then, because it was a “singles-mixer,” the event organizer came around and started the Icebreaker game. He gave us all a topic to discuss (“If you could jump on a plane right now and go anywhere, where would you go, and why?”). Ten minutes later he told all of the guys to stand and rotate clockwise around the room. Or, as clockwise as the table-configuration would allow. The two guys at our table got up and left… and NONE of the other guys came to sit down. They all went to the other tables. (???)

What, are we all dogs or something?

A few, awkward moments passed, during which one of the other women at my table suggested that she was too intimidating, and that’s why the guys had avoided us. I laughed and told her she was not intimidating. (She had a power-job, but she seemed like a nice person.) Her pretty, blonde friend laughed too and piped up, “Yeah, you’re intimidating” – she pointed at her friend – “and I’ve been married too many times, and you talk too much.” She looked at me as she said this last bit. “I talk too much?” I asked, surprised and a bit miffed. (I mean, someone had to lead the table through the icebreaker question.) “Well,” she said, “I don’t know you that well, so I have to make up something for our story, here.” I smiled, but started to feel out of place. Just then, two straggler guys, one of whom was very good-looking, showed up and took two of the available seats at our table. We started chatting with them, and it quickly turned out that good-looking guy was building a house in the same neighborhood where intimidating-woman lived. Score for her, right? Wrong! The time was up, and the guys had to rotate again. And once again, no guys came to sit at our table!

Another awkward moment ensued, and then a woman wandered over. “Is this seat taken?” she asked. “No, it’s yours!” we chorused, seeming to be collectively relieved that at least someone wanted to join us. “Oh, thanks! I’ve just run into an old friend,” she replied. And she picked up the chair and hauled it away. (OMg!!! Seriously?!?)

When time was almost up again, two guys sauntered over and sat down at our table, ostensibly out of pity. One of them was the organizer-guy, who hadn’t actually sat down at a table that evening, but I read the look on his face as, “You poor things!”

By the fourth round, we were again magically avoided by the male populace. One of the guys who’d been sitting with us during the first round came over to say goodbye as he was heading out the door, but at that point any “attention” just felt humiliating. I took my cue and followed suit soon after.

I felt like such a GIANT LOSER!!!!

It didn’t help that when I got home I found out I’d had a wad of green spinach from my lunch-salad stuck between my teeth all evening….

I’m soooo glamorous….

In the Land of Losers: Vol 2

Yup, there are more of these guys out there. So now it’s mid-February and, due to kid-weekends, plus spending a “free” (non-kid) weekend with the Flu, it’s my first weekend out since the night involving Ass Grab Loser (from my last post). And it’s Girls’ Night Out. (*For those of you who’ve been following my story, my annulment had just come through. I got the letter in the mail on Monday, January 30. By the following Friday night I was sick as a dog. I watched the Superbowl that weekend, popping Tamiflu. I never get sick. I think – and my therapist agrees – that I was so relieved to have the annulment come through that I “relaxed” all my defenses… and got sick. Also, I’ve had a bit of a life-change, due to the fact that my 20 y.o. son began living with me, full-time, in January. I love him with all my heart, but it’s been a bit of an adjustment. More on all this in another post. Back to February….)

A new gf had invited a bunch of us to karaoke night at a local dive bar. As long as I don’t have to sing, I’m in. (GNO! Woohoo!) There are pool tables at this place, and I learn that my gf is a bit of a shark. Now, I’m no shark, but I enjoy pool, so I’m down for a game or two. Despite having recently been sick, I’ve managed to “clean up” decently – black tee, skinny jeans, black moto jacket, black boots, messy hair. I’m totally ready for a fun night with the girls. Early on, my gf points out a guy who she thinks is kind of hot – the one in the red shirt. He’s playing shuffleboard at a table adjacent to our pool table, and she’s flirting with him when she’s down there, taking a shot from that side. I check him out – he is totally not my type. For starters, he’s a bit too old for me – maybe in his late 50s, early 60s. And he has a beard. But she’s into him. C’est la vie, c’est l’amour. Okay, cool – I will totally be her wing-chick. But first, I need a drink. I go to the bar, wait five minutes in line, get a drink, and return. The game begins.

According to a recent study, most women seem to prefer men with facial hair. I am not one of those women.

When it’s my turn to go down to that side of the pool table to take my shot, the red-shirted guy says hey, and then comments on my pool-stance in a friendly/flirty way. I laugh and tell him that’s because I have no idea what I’m doing – but she does (I point at my gf). Then I focus, take my shot, miss (of course), and go back to the other side of the table. About five minutes (and two of her sunk-balls) later, I go back down the table to take another shot. Again, Red Shirt comments on my “sexy” pool-stance. (I’m wearing boots and have to lean over the table to take my shot.) His comments make me uncomfortable, as (a) I’m not trying to be sexy (I’m trying to win!), and (b) he seems to be flirting with me, and I haven’t “put anything out there” toward him – my gf has. So I take my shot, straighten up, and loudly declare how I don’t really know what I’m doing, but my friend is such an amazing player. “In fact,” I say to him, “she’s our queen!” I feel good about this, and the game goes forward in this fashion, with me continuing to “throw sunshine” (opposite of throwing shade, right?) at my gf, and she sinking all of her balls, plus the 8-ball shortly thereafter. Game over.

I take a break to go to the bar. I wait another five minutes in line, finally get a drink, and return. A pair of younger guys (late-20s/early 30s) approach us and want to play. My gf says sure, but let’s do doubles, so she splits us up into partner-teams. (“Um, hello? I’m not that good…?”) The game starts.

The young guys are relaxed and funny, and I’m actually playing well. Fortunately, I’m paired with the guy who is the better player of the two, and we’re having a lot of fun (i.e. winning). About halfway through the game, I’m down on the shuffleboard side of the table, and Red Shirt guy saunters over. He leans over while I’m taking a shot.

“Must be a real feather in your cap to have those younger guys hitting on you, eh?”


Sooooo many things wrong with that, dude…!

It’s one of those WTF moments, where several answers are sparring in my brain to get to be said: everything from defensive: “They’re not actually hitting on us, we’re all just having fun,” to condescending: “Oh, sugar, you  have no idea – I get hit on by 20-somethings all the time, in the most obnoxious ways!” to defensive (again): “I’m not actually into younger guys. In fact, they’re a turnoff for me, because I’m a mom,” to angry/offensive: “‘Must be a real feather in my cap?’ Oh, really? Must it? Because you know what’s in my head?!?” to incredulous/affronted: “Are you seriously going to sit here and give me passive-aggressive attitude, and pout about how I’m not flirting back with you, and in the meantime pass up the chance to get to be with my beautiful-fun-feisty gf, who, for God-knows-what reason, actually likes you?” I run the gamut from wanting to explode to wanting to smack this guy. Instead, I take a breath, decide this guy’s not worth it, and go the least-incendiary route with my response:

“It’s the mom-vibe. Younger guys pick up on it and feel comfortable around me.”

Oh, snap! I’ve just been modest and put him in his place at the same time. Double-snap! (Maybe that’s not hip anymore, but it fits.)

I walk away and don’t even know if the guy exists for the rest of the evening. The next night I tell my gf what he said, and she is then sooooo glad she didn’t waste extra energy on him, either. Hey, Red Shirt Loser Guy: if this were a Star Trek episode, you’d have died off with no one to mourn you. Maybe consider revamping your attitude – on life, and on women.

Aziz Ansari is my dating twin (?!?)

So I went out with this guy a while back. Nice guy, I really liked him. But after our one date, he never texted me again. I tried texting him a few weeks later, like “Hey, how’s it going?” His response was tepid. So I was like, okay, guess it just didn’t work for you. Ouch, but fair enough. Never heard from him again. Until….

Flash forward another six weeks — eight weeks after our one-and-only date — and out of the blue he texts me: How’s it going? Uh, fine, how’s it going with you? Fine. Like that wasn’t weird at all. He kept texting, about nothing specific, and I kept responding politely, but the whole time I was like, What’s going on, here?

The next day, he texted me again. Same story — nothing specific to say, just wanted to shoot the breeze. The day after, same thing again.

So after three days of this how’s-the-weather business, I decide to cut to the chase. I texted him: Look, dude. I really, really liked you, but you kind of dropped me like a hot potato after that one date we went on, so I kind of don’t understand why you’re texting me now.

There was a pause. And then:

Oh, wow, I’m really sorry about the hot-potato thing. But I just really like talking to you. Is it okay if I still text you?


Okay, I guess.

So he did. A lot. He texted me almost every single day for about the next six weeks, in a quantity of texting that I’ve never had except with guys who were interested in dating me. I was kind of okay with this, because I was still kind of into him. But it was confusing, too, because he wasn’t even close to asking me out. In fact, I could never get the conversation to go anywhere. For instance, one Saturday night I made it clear that I had no plans, and I was going to “snuggle in and watch a movie.” He wanted to know what movie. I said I didn’t know, had to check out what was on PPV, and he texted his opinions on movies I’d list. Finally, I settled on “The Martian,” and he said, Oh, that sounds good! I want to see that! So I took a chance and responded: LOL – you could just come over and watch it with me! He didn’t answer. Until the next day, when he said, Sorry I didn’t respond last night. I fell asleep.

Okay, whatever. I’d sent that text at 8:17 pm….

Another time there was a really great band I was going to see at a local venue, and he texted to ask what I was up to. So I told him and asked what he was doing. He said he was just hanging out, visiting at his parents’ house. I said he should leave and come see the band. He declined. So I all-but-begged (Come on! It’ll be fun! Besides, I need someone to rescue me from all the guys hitting on me. Just kidding – it’s not Walmart! 😉 ), and he never responded. Gee….

I figured he was lonely, or going through some sort of midlife-crisis, so I tried the raw-and-real approach to get him to open up, as a friend. Look, it’s obvious you’re going through something right now. But I’ve been through a few things, myself, and I’ve seen how dark the shadows can be, too. If you ever want to talk — really talk — I’m right here. He never responded to those texts, either.

I couldn’t figure this guy out, one way or another. I began dubbing him Ft. Knox in my head. I asked my male teammates at work what they thought of Ft. Knox’s behavior, and they were just like, “Huh? He’s texting you that much and doesn’t even ask you out? That guy makes no sense.” I asked my girlfriends; they didn’t understand it either.

Finally, one guy, who’s like a brother to me (and isn’t afraid to let me know what he’s really thinking), said, “I know what’s going on! You’re his Available-To-Text person, who makes him look good in front of other people!”


“And that’s all he wants you for! Look,” my friend said. “This:”

I watched the clip, and realized: Crap. My friend is right. I’m Available-To-Text Chick. I’m Aziz Ansarietta!


Well, at least I’m in good company.