Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Love is a Battlefield

Oh my god I suck at dating.

… Perhaps suck is not the best word to use in this context.

Oh my god I am very bad at dating.

Very bad as in my grandparents might think I'm a lesbian. Very bad as in there has been no noticeable improvement since sixth grade when boys routinely asked me out as a joke. Very bad as in I have repeatedly googled the phrase "human pheromone deficiency."

I would like to be able to write about my abysmal dating record with a certain amount of flair. I would like to trot out flippant comments about how fickle some boys are and how ridiculously stupid others seems to be and ultimately how my perpetual singleness is a sign of how incredibly awesome I am. I would like for this post to result in hoards of adoring attractive male fans competing to woo me (wish list here). I would like to draw some provocative conclusion preferably comparing my life to a popular 80s movie. I would like to seem cool and funny and not at ALL like I have EVER moped or lost sleep or cried like a big baby as a result of this record and certainly have not even thought of doing any of these in at least 10 years. I doubt I will accomplish these goals.

If I have a date it is safe to assume that I met the (alleged) gentleman online because I am completely incapable of meeting men in person. This is likely because I have very little patience for bars and I find dance clubs vile (have you been to one of these places? They put on loud music and expect you to move your body in rhythm; the whole concept seems rather far fetched.). I like doing stuff. I like joining clubs and attending classes. I like wandering and wining and dining. I like going to readings and concerts. It turns out that boys hate doing stuff. Don’t believe me? Well how do you feel about believing the New York Times? I’m not even going to get into how lame this makes men sound (cause seriously guys, LAME). For now let’s just say that I don’t meet guys on food tours of chinatown.

But thanks to the internet I go on a lot of dates -- mostly because I try very hard to go on a lot of dates. While the phrase "glutton for punishment" does come to mind about once ever 5 minutes my theory is that dating is like voting -- if you're not out there casting a ballot you don't get to complain when things turn out badly. I have earned the right to complain and I intend to exercise it here and now. So I should warn you that there may be some whining. And likely I will have to eat some ice cream. But as long as it doesn't end with me screaming "Why don't you like me?!?!?!" I plan on declaring success.

I suppose I need to address exactly what is happening on these dates -- this is the hard part of the post. I feel that to do this I'd have to have an inkling of exactly what is going wrong and I’m mostly at a loss. I admit that I am a huge geek and that I am making no effort at all to hide this fact while out on dates. I keep thinking that being a huge geek is a plus –it's 2007, the nerds have won, right? Personally I LOVE geeks so my general approach to dating has been, “I'M A HUGE GEEK, COME AND GET IT.” Perhaps this is part of the problem but I doubt it. I’m a great date. I’m witty and articulate and prompt. Most of the time I even pull off cute. Typically the date ends with me thinking, “Oh, this one is in the bag! I am an awesome dating machine!” And then I get bored with waiting for him to call. And then I call. And then he announces his general dissatisfaction with the idea of a second date. And then? The ice cream.

This current state of affairs is bullshit since I was all but promised that the little bug in my "make boys like me" plug-in was going to right itself in due time. Remember how I was going to be a heart breaker right after I got out of junior high and boys realized that girls weren't icky? Or right after high school when boys realized that smart girls are awesome? Or right after college when boys took off their beer goggles and noticed that funny girls are much cooler than pretty girls? I'm waiting....

My frustration is further complicated by the fact that girlfriend-wise I am a really good deal. I invest a decent chunk of money in my 401K. I buy cute underwear. My dentist has all but promised that I will not need dentures. And also I am crazy only in the really attractive good ways (obsessive about being on time, incapable of falling asleep without playing a rousing game of Scattergories in my head, etc) rather than the annoying bad ways that are most commonly seen on reality TV programs (tendency to scream at people, belief that men should always pay, inability to conceal naughty bits underneath clothing). And yet the girls on reality TV have men competing in ill conceived contests to win dates with them and I am babysitting a friend's 3 year old on Friday night (admittedly he's cuter than most TV bachelors).

I suspect that my melancholia over the dating experience as a whole stems from the fact that I am completely unable to view each experience in a vacuum choosing instead to believe that every boy who doesn't call is symptomatic of the one eternal truth -- not that you can't eat just one potato chip, or that naughty girls need love too, or that skinny jeans don't look good on anyone but that all boys hate Brianna. Or perhaps less dramatically: No boys click with Brianna

To be honest the problem is not always with the boys clicking with me. Occasionally, I don't click with the boys. Always these are nice boys who I seriously wish I could like but the issue is chemistry. It seems likely that this has been my problem all along. I don't understand chemistry at all and I'd like to just outright deny it's existence since trying to please powers that we don't understand inspires magical thinking. This path leads directly to disaster. Maybe if I click my heels three times the fickle god of chemistry will smile on this date. Maybe if I chop the leg off of this cute little bunny it will bring me luck. Maybe if I forget to wear a shirt he won't even notice the lack of chemistry!


Jill said...

so what you're saying is you tend to only like boys who don't like you back, and you don't have 'chemistry' with the ones who like you...

sounds to me like you're real good at shooting yourself in the foot, babe :)

Lisa said...

Or right after college when boys took off their beer goggles and noticed that funny girls are much cooler than pretty girls?

GREAT. Now you've got me worried. I have to believe in this fact!

Oliver said...

Too bad you're on the other side of the pond. OKCupid's quickmatch suggested we might be a good fit ;)

Anonymous said...

1) hug.
2) thank you for babysitting! so grateful!
3) we're baking pumpkin pie. it would taste good with ice cream. (and we have ginger creme brule ice cream, if you're out.)
4) no males ever liked me except for the scary guys. at least you occasionally get bland. yea!
4b) no, seriously, the first boy i kissed--after meeting him volunteering together at a homeless shelter over christmas in London-- turned out to have forgotten to take his medication that weekend.
5) four weeks later, i met Owen.
6) i *really* recommend England. (er, except for the boys on medication. and some of them are ok, as long as you don't want anything more than kissing.)

alia said...

sigh. the anonymous was me.

Blue said...

I still think the best way to meet guys is through your friends, even friends of friends. Yes I know I was not the best at that while you were still here on the West Coast but since you left I found the perfect guy for you. Of course he has given up on me and has started dating someone else who is not as perfect for him as you would have been.


Yemil said...

Somehow this post left me thinking that there may be some particular or recent date to have left you venting in this post, even considering the other times you posted about the dilemma that is men. C'mon spill it what happened that got you going this time?

And what ever happened with CrazyBlindDate, I thought there was some hope there?

Brianna said...

Lisa -- worry not, you're way cuter than me.

Oliver -- Tease.

Alia -- thanks for the baby time and the ice cream :)

Kelly -- Tease #2.

Yemil -- impressive intuition. there was a date that inspired this post but it's not really worth of a story, esp since the boy was nice enough just not into me.

There will be more crazy blind dating.. stay tuned.