I’ve kept a positive, upbeat outlook over the course of this blog, but I was in the doldrums a while ago. Just a little bit. It’s passed now. Part of it was standard winter blues, but another part was my perpetual singleness. Don’t get me wrong – I’m happy with myself and my life. I don’t need “my other half” or someone to complete me. But I want more. I want someone to share the good things in life with. Food. Drink. Laughter. Music. Travel. Sex. Just to name a few.
For a short while – nearly two glorious months – I got a taste of what that was like. I had sex (some of it). I lost my virginity. I finally felt like I was in the know, part of the club, part of the world, “normal.” I stopped feeling those pangs when I saw couples. I did things that come so easily to most people: hugging, kissing, cuddling, massaging, holding hands, or just sitting on beach watching the sunset – things other people take for granted. Until I slept with Rebecca a few times, I had no idea just how warm another human body could be.
Now it’s been ten months. I couldn’t help but peek at her Facebook and I saw she’s been with the same guy for the past eight months. Oh really. So what happened to all that jazz about not wanting to date and wanting to focus on herself? What happened to her being too upset to even think about guys after the last breakup? What happened to not wanting to be exclusive? How come she didn’t push him away and sabotage things like she did with me? What was my problem?
Well, let that be a lesson to me. Next time I hear that stuff, I’ll know what it really means. Girls seem to have a really complicated way of saying “I’m not interested (anymore).” But whatever. I’m leaving her in the past where she belongs. I’m doing my best to not to dwell on negative thoughts and remain forward-looking. Therefore I’ve been filling up my time with hobbies and activities to keep my mind on other things.
I’ve been hitting the gym hardcore for the past three months. It’s a great outlet for my pent up sexual energy and frustrations. I continue to set personal records in deadlifts, squats, and bench presses. I’ve stacked three, four, or even five 45lb plates on the weight sled and pushed it back and forth across the floor until my legs gave out and my arms shook. My buddy and I tried a class last weekend that nearly wiped us out. But my body is responding and I’m tipping the scales at 187 pounds – a number I dreamed about for years.
The gym is not my only arena of success these days. I’ve been out there marketing myself and I gained ten new clients, so this should be my best year financially. I had a great parade season and a triumphant return to solo performing. I’m practicing several instruments a week and I sound better than ever. (I find playing music as cathartic as going to the gym.) My passport arrived and I’m planning some more travel. And I’m giving my life a complete overhaul – new car, clothes, furniture, appliances – everything.
Throughout all of this I’ve had Bumble running in the background. The last app standing. There was that one awkward date a couple months ago, and since then I canceled on two more because I’d decided I’d rather go to the gym instead. I just used the always popular, vague line of “something came up.” I felt a bit shitty doing it, but deep down I felt those dates would have ended up like all the others, so why bother?
But there was one final Bumble date. I tried to keep the online chatter light and flirty and save all the getting-to-know-you questions for in-person. As Matthew Hussey says, “if you’re using texting to ask, ‘How many brothers and sisters do you have?’… you’re doing it wrong.” So I gave that a shot, but it didn’t matter. Once again I met a girl who checked out of the conversation after five minutes and I was the only one left making an effort.
I’d talk, I’d ask questions, she’d respond… and I’d wait. Nothing. Nothing asked about myself in return. Scratch that – she asked literally two questions, almost as afterthoughts: what was my job, and did I live alone? When I realized she kept glancing at her phone on top of her purse on the chair next to her, I bade her farewell. I know a lost cause when I see one. And thus concludes my online dating efforts. Permanently.
After so many years, I’ve come to conclusion that it’s a supreme waste of time. There’s always the anecdotal success story, but I could never get it to work for me. It never felt right – always forced and awkward and unnatural. Personal experience and informal polling of friends and fellow bloggers tells me that meeting people in real life is the way to go. Not to mention that I had more success with Rebecca than all the girls I met online put together.
Now that spring is finally here I’m compiling a bucket list, which includes several upcoming Meetups. I’m trying to get to that same sweet spot I was in last year, where I found the perfect balance of doing my own thing and not worrying about finding someone. Then BAM, it literally happened when I least expected it. In the meantime I feel I’ve grown content with the status quo again.
I also continue to work on myself. It’s almost comical… I’ve had thirty years to work on myself – how much more time do I need? There’s always room for improvement, I guess, like with my conversation skills. That’s partly why I’ve been filling up my calendar with things to do – gives me shit to talk about. I’m doing my best to be more social and to fight reverting back to my natural introverted state.
So I guess that’s all I have to say for the time being. I’ve had this blog post drafted for weeks and weeks and I kept revisiting and revising as my thoughts and feelings ebbed and flowed. Now I’m finally ready to publish, and we’ll see what happens next in life.