Friday, November 14, 2008

At First

Dating - Some would define it as an exciting period of time when you embark on a little journey with a potential mate. Everything is new and exciting because that person is, well, new. To me, dating is more an inevitable task on par with going to the dentist. You squirm and hem and haw and silently hope that some freak of nature causes an F3 tornado to bypass Moore, Oklahoma and somehow rip through Uptown Dallas, therefore cancelling said appointment. But since the skies are clear, you end up going and realize that it wasn't as painful as you made it out to be. And if nothing else, you end up walking out with shiny teeth. (Umm...what were we talking about?)

I have a newly formed opinion that it takes many, many adult years to become fully formed in all areas of your adult life. Some choose to move up the corporate ladder quickly and efficiently and while possessing a limitless knowledge of the business world, little attention has been paid to social development. *ahem* Others play the field and end up being masters of the dating world, or do so and find that the married life is for them. Either way, they've explored and figured out their place in the rat race of love.

I am the first to admit that I am behind the times when it comes to dating. Read: real adult dating and relationships. They frighten me. And adding to that is a new confusion.

I recently started dating B. You could say that this is my very first foray into the normal dating world. Nothing about Mr. M and I was normal; not the way we met, not how we dated or felt about each other, nothing. So the best way to describe my current feelings about B (after 1 1/2 dates and 2 make out sessions,) is...bemusement. There's some also some intrigue thrown in for good measure but the main ingredient is head-scratching confusion. Is it supposed to be like this? I find myself wondering. Aren't you supposed to feel giddy and excited and have butterflies and the whole nine? Or is that just cliche and do regular people in the real world actually grow to like one another? Or is the absence of butterflies an omen that the coupling is doomed?

I ask you my doves, what is "normal" when it comes to dating?

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Yellow Brick Memory Lane

You know how some days just start off with a certain kind of mood? Not yours, but the day's. It's almost as if it is traveling along it's own course and you're just along for the ride, (or being drug as the case may be.)

I set myself up to have a good day today. I went to bed early, woke up on time, had a yummy breakfast and the ever-important jumbo coffee. It's the chilliest day of the season so I put on my beloved, cropped leather jacket, unzipped the right-side pocket and felt something against my fingertips. Curious as to what had gone un-missed for the last few seasons I pull out a ticket stub. Unfolding it, my heart stopped.

(Everyone here knows my romantic situation but in the name of journalistic integrity, I have decided to refer to him as Mr. M.) Mr. M is a New Yorker and on my very first trip out to see him, he surprised me with tickets to see Wicked on Broadway. After the show I had placed that stub in my jacket pocket with thoughts, I'm sure, to place it in a home much more worthy of its value upon my return. I never did. And so there it lived only to resurface eight months later and inflict wicked heartache. Touche.

My question to you is this, do you believe in signs? Looking for signs is often a trait prescribed to by religious zealots or new agey elemental types. I like to think of myself as a very logical person with bouts of cynicism and sarcasm thrown in for good measure. So is it possible that the stub was a coincidence? Sure. But why when, for the first day in a while, did I wake up with dry eyes and a clear head only to stumble on that little bomb in my pocket?

Are little occurrences only signs if we give them that power? Are we searching so desperately for something outside ourselves to tell us what we already know? And if it hadn't been the stub, would have just been something online horoscope or Pei Wei fortune cookie, perhaps?

When my breathing returned to normal I folded my scrap of memory shrapnel and instead of returning it to my right jacket pocket, I unzipped my left and shoved it in. The truth is that Mr. M is never far from my thoughts. He will always be with me to one degree or another. The ticket stub's sign status is debatable but I get to chose what to do with it from here. In one pocket is my past and the other is my future. They're simply two parts of the buttery-soft, luxurious leather jacket of life.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

The Essentials

I recently ran across a book that I'm dying to buy. It's called The One Hundred: A Guide to the Pieces Every Stylish Woman Must Own by Nena Garcia (Editor at Large of Elle magazine.) In it, she details 100 types of clothing and accessories that are her picks to make up a stylish look. Some of her choices would definitely not be on my own essentials list (ex: cowboy boots, polo shirt, or wayfarers.) But most of them I completely agree with.

I'm proud to say that with a pair of gold-rimmed Ray Bans, diamond stud earings, Prada loafers and leather riding boots I am on my way to meeting my own list. A few other things I hope to own in the future: tuxedo jacket, quality white button down, pencil skirt, cashmere sweater and an investment bag (kinda like the gorge Gucci tote up top.) I still have a long way to go but I can't wait for the day when I look in my closet and see beautiful pieces that I love and am proud of.

In the book Nena says, "A truly stylish woman makes smart decisions based on good taste, and the ability for an item to endure." I love the idea of having a smaller, yet smarter wardrobe. But this is about more than fashion. It goes hand in hand with developing a clear path for myself and figuring out what kind of woman I want to be. In starting anew, you have the opportunity to get rid of the things that don't service your life or soul. Things that are trendy, cheap and bought on the fly fulfill you for the time being - a fleeting moment. I am looking for more substance in every area of my life, right down the clothes on my back.

Do you agree with me on this? Or do you think it's ubsurd to spend hundreds of dollars on a basic trench coat? And if you're with me, what would be on your list?

Friday, October 17, 2008

Why Wouldn't You Eat It?

Cake: What would be the point in having it if you never ate it? I've always loathed that saying because it is used to imply that the subject is greedy. Well, if that's all it takes then color me covetous.

But my question is, if you have something that you love and you're good at, is it always the right move to use it for profit? I ask because I have often fantasized about going back to school and becoming a real writer. It is something I love and I've always been taught that if you are able to go to work everyday doing something you love, then you've really made it (thanks Dad.) But when the real world comes into play, is it better to keep your passions to yourself?

I've never had to compete with other writers more experienced than me. I've also never had a hard nose critique where your work ends up with so many -'s, ^'s, and X's that it's left to die in a pool of red editor's ink. So what remains is a positive escape. Something I can do just for me that makes me happy and fulfilled. And shouldn't we hold tight the things in life that give us personal satisfaction?

More and more I feel that moving forward in the fashion world is the right move for me. I'm not ready to give up on all my experience and knowledge and start anew. Especially when all I could potentially end up with is a broken passion for writing and a hefty student loan bill.

Maybe it's okay to do something that you like to make money and keep the things you love alive for just

I'm Sorry For Burdening You With My Blog

I'm curious, what was your reaction to this post's title? If you scoffed at the latent insecurities nestled in those words then Bravo! Is there an element that rings true, however? I read a fantastic blog post today by Erin at Single-ish with the title "Why Do Women Apologize So Much?" In it, she states that as women we are taught to be polite and generous. I agree and think those are great qualities but when did that blur into a compulsive habit to constantly apologize when it is not needed?

I think this nugget is only a piece of a bigger problem. Why is that men spend a majority of their lives being extremely selfish and get praised for it? Is it because society says that they are building in themselves a provider for their future families? That's one of my theories. Regardless of the reason, the facts remain...

Let's discuss. Do you think Mark feels bad that he performed better at the sales contest than his co-workers, even the ones who are his friends? Nope. Mark pats himself on the back and walks around basking in the congratulatory praise. Does Mark feel guilty when he blows off a date with Ann because he took a non-emotional view of the sitch and realized that there might be other (yes, maybe hotter or younger) women who would give him a chance? Doubtful. And he surely does not apologize for his changes of heart, mind, jobs or plans in order to better himself and his situation.

It's the old adage: I came, I saw, I conquered. Only a consummate man's man such as Caesar could have such a macho catch phrase. But what is so wrong with seeing something, wanting it, and doing everything in your power to achieve it? I think if we women combined some of this attitude with our inherent qualities (intuition) we could have everything we've ever wanted.

Veni, vidi, vici....I think I'd like mine engraved on a pretty gold charm bracelet.

Quarter Life

As much as I hate to admit it, I think John Mayer is onto something. Don't get me wrong, I think the dude should have a biohazard symbol branded on his forehead for all celebusingles to see (Jen Aniston...I'm lookin' at you.) But when he croones of having a quarter life crisis, I feel I know all too well what he's saying.

I find myself at one of those cliched crossroads, where it feels like every decision is weighted with the rest of my life dependent on the outcome. In truth, isn't this the case with every decision? But there are stretches of time where it seems like the toughest one you face is whether or not to rent a dramatic indie film, or a cheesy chick flick.

Going with the theme of cliche's I'd like to bring up another: ignorance is bliss. Hmm. There's a reason these things are trite and over-used and it's because they're the truth. A part of me exists that would love to pull the covers over my head and never re-surface. Or rather, surface just enough to go to work, put in my dues, pay my rent and be able to afford to grab a cocktail or buy a pair of pumps. Simple. Easy.

But even in the world of daydreams that life seems very shallow and leaves me feeling desperate and empty. I don't think anyone actively picks that life out for themselves. Instead, they choose it by not choosing something else. Being pro-active helps me feel in control and as any of you know who are reading this, I have a teensy issue with control. ;)

So what I'm left with is knowing I have to make a choice. A big one, preferably, while I still can. I'll leave you with this sublime quote from Nicole Kidman in the July issue of Vogue:

"I don’t believe in flittering around the edges of things. You’re either going to walk through life and experience it fully or you’re going to be a voyeur. And I’m not a voyeur.”