How To Be Single : Not a Movie Review

Carrie – You would think that around Valentine’s Day would be when we dating bloggers are most inspired, but at the risk of being presumptuous, I think it’s a fairly safe consensus to say that we here at DTT6 are in a funk. I have yet to miss a deadline for my weekly posts but I’ve been finding it really hard to blog about something – anything – when I really have no desire to be in any type of romantic relationship.

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Navigating the Dating Scene 101

Now that I am #singlewildandfree, and am excited to date through the six, I have come to the conclusion that I am now a dating rookie. Being with Mr.High School Crush for over two and a half years has left me off the market, and consequently removing flirting, swiping and casually hooking up – which is now territory that I am (soon to be) exploring

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As a recently single woman, I must say that I’ve never been more excited. I mean, what are your early twenties for if not to make mistakes, have fun, kiss a few frogs (hopefully not too many) and one day (way later) find the prince. There were a few big factors that pushed me to the single side, notably the uncertainty of my future, and what I have coined the “musical chairs dilemma”: that sure, it seems like there’s lots of ‘chairs’ now and having one to sit in is great, but if you don’t want to sit in that chair for the rest of your life – it’s better to keep walking and looking for that chair you do love before it gets scooped up by someone else. Maybe it’s just an analogy that makes sense to me, but hopefully you can semi understand what I’m saying. That being said, I’m now walking around to the music and just scoping out the “chairs”( p.s. chairs is my metaphor for men). As I’m walking, and living the single life I have just a few questions to ponder (and if anyone knows any answers, that would be muchos appreciated), consider this my dating SOS.

  1. Are all dates going to be “Netflix and Chill?”

If the archived posts in this blog do not emphasize my concern, I’ll repeat it: do guys only want sex? I mean, I’m definitely not in the market for looking for a new boyfriend, but I’m also not looking for a one night stand. In the ideal world, finding a guy to go for some dinner dates, do some activities and THEN Netflix and chill would be great. Just curious if these types of guys actually exist, or if I’m in for a reality check.

  1. Where do you even meet these guys?!

Sucks for me, but I’ve already used my “tinder boyfriend” card, and feel a little weird about swiping again (I mean explaining it once was embarrassing, but kinda funny, but TWICE – maybe that would be a cause for concern). Mabye it’s the fact that I try to model my life after a Rom-com and expect my own John Cusack to find my number in my favourite book, the day that he is supposed to marry someone else (Serendipity reference – great movie) – but I want to have the “wow” moment. The convenience of tinder does have its draw, but meeting someone at a coffee shop, or walking the dog seems so much more romantic – but does that actually happen? Am I crazy to think that life will have the super cute guy that will be my next boyfriend waiting for me at a coffee shop, or is it more likely that he’s only a swipe right away?

  1. Is there a competition with my EX to find someone new faster?

Okay, I get it that this is kind of lame, and probably convinces everyone that I am not actually over it (I swear I am), but is it so wrong to want to find someone before he does? I mean if he moves on first, does that mean he’s over me and uh-oh if that sets me back, is it true that you always want what you can’t have?! Let’s hope not!

  1. How soon is too soon?

By this question I mean a few things, and each is making single me confused as hell! How soon is too soon to move on to a new fling/relationship/hookup. I know that there’s “rules” to getting over a break up (e.g. it should take half the time to move on to the next one), but what REALLY is acceptable aka when am I not a total beeyotch for texting or hooking up with someone new. That being said, how soon is too soon to hook up? I mean, after 2.5 years of being in a relationship, this single life also equates to a dry spell, and I’m not sure how long I can last – but I also don’t know how comfortable I am giving off the one-night-stand/hook-up only vibe. This struggle is seriously real.

  1. Will I EVER find another boyfriend?

Again, I’m not looking now, and I’m actually excited to do the whole casual thing but one day I’m going to want to not just date but be in a relationship. I’ve learned so much from my last relationship, that I now know what more I want, and also my absolute dealbreakers. I think I was picky before, but now I’m picky and certain about the qualities that make someone “boyfriend material”.

These are just some of the questions just pop into my mind as I begin my journey dating through the six. I’ve been out of the game for so long, and have wheels like a boat (you’ll laugh when you get it), so I’m sending out a serious SOS. There you have it – my dating anxieties, mind you, this is before I even start actually dating, so anticipate more questions and vents to help me learn to navigate this new found dating life in the six!

An Ethical Question: Flirting for Free Food & Drink

Carrie – There are many perks to being single. Guilt-free fantasizing about that cute guy in your elevator or the Adonis of a delivery man who comes by your office for starters. Who knows, either of these options could become a possible love interest. Another pro is being courted. While I may turn down guys, I will never turn down an opportunity of free drink and food. In fact, I flirt for food.

My question is: Is flirting for free food and drink ethical? 
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Help! I’m stuck in a f*ck funk and am trying to get out

Lately I have struggling with what to write about….like reaaaallly struggling. So much so that some of my friends have given me random topics to comment on in an attempt to get me motivated. Well, fear not friend-os, my single ladies survival guide to Valentine’s Day is on its way. It’s just that I’ve been feeling so lethargic and uninspired lately that my creative juices are basically at a standstill.  And it’s not even like I haven’t had any hookups to talk about. On the contrary, I saw Mr. Views of the 6ix last weekend and let me tell you his apartment was as glorious as ever. I honestly tried to take a pic of it on my way out the following morning but bailed when I heard him coming out his room.

The fact remains that besides for my disturbing apartment fetish, I couldn’t think of anything to write about. What the heck was causing my writers block? Don’t forget, I’m the girl who wrote about shaving her legs so clearly it doesn’t take a lot to get a post out of me. Well, while lying in bed staring crankily at the ceiling last night I suddenly realized the issue.

I am in a F*ck Funk.

F*ck Funk /fuk/fəNGk/

Noun: A dater’s version of the winter blues. Characterized by waning energy, lackluster affect and ambivalence toward both dating and men.

The F*ck Funk is an annual occurrence result from a failed cuffing season. When summer flings are no more than a distant memory, the days are short but feel so very long, and everyone is coupled up or too lazy to care, yup. You’ve got the makings of the F*ck Funky time of year. Now, I may not be a scientist. I can’t prove that this is a real thing or that my foul mood is correlated with a serotonin or dopamine deficiency. But hell, this is my blog, and as such I own the right to make shit up as I go. So in continuing to abuse that right, I, Dr. Samantha Jones, will suggest that based on personal experience alone, this funk is a totally legitimate thing that I can both diagnose and help treat. I know, I really am amazing.

Doctorate credentials aside, let me explain how a F*ck Funk manifests through my most recent meetup with Mr. Views. It was Friday night and I was ready to paaaarttttaaaayyyyy! Alongside some of my best friends I headed to Motionball charity gala with one goal in mind: I was gunna find me a man. Lately I have been so apathetic toward J-swipe, tinder, and hookups in general because yes, ladies and gentlemen, Samantha Jones wants a little something more. Despite all this, I was totally not “feelin it” from the moment we arrived at the gala. I felt ugly, lacked confidence and definitely didn’t want to put myself out there in front of the overwhelming number of hotties around me. I even wing-womaned for my friend so she could meet her “dream bae” but barely made an effort with his friends standing nearby. I wanted someone without trying which is how I ended up at Mr. Views.

Now we can all see where this is going and loneliness is never a good reason to hook up with someone, but against better judgment I still hit him up on my cab ride home. We actually had a great time, I’ve alluded to our great sexual chemistry, but I was really put off by our lame attempt at small talk during a post-coital cuddle sesh. We have nothing in common and it was painfully obvious to us both.

A F*ck Funk appears  when “just doing me” loses it sheen and becomes stale. I was bored of the meaningless hook ups and missing the intimacy that just doesn’t come from a 2 am booty call (shocking…). As I stared at his ceiling while his neighbors blared Sia at 8 in the FREAKING MORNING, I found myself thinking, “How did I end up here? Has my self-esteem really fallen so far that I’ll bang anyone just to feel some closeness? AM I REALLY THAT MUCH OF A CLICHÉ?”

Armed with the fear of my own banality and realization that I was on the edge of a self-esteem breakdown, I slipped back into my gala dress and said “see you later”, knowing very well he’d probably never see me again. I was in a F*ck Funk and I needed to figure out how to get my mojo back.

How to get your mojo back by Dr. S. Jones

The following is my how-to guide for beating da funk and RSVPing “No” to the pity party that has recently characterized my love life.

  1. Le Gym
    • The oldest adage in the book and for good reason. I am not by any means suggesting you need to look a certain way to be happy. I’m definitely not the skinniest person in the world but can honestly say I love myself as I am (90% of the time). HOWEVER, whether you are a size 10 or a size 2, going to the gym releases endorphins and endorphins make you happy. So get yo ass to dat spin class, simple as that.
  2. Show Gratitude
    • This is the easiest fix ever. A couple years ago Harvard published a paper proving that the best way to feel happiness is by telling someone you love how important they are to you. It’s a pretty dense read so if you don’t feel like investing the hours that I was forced to during my undergrad, you can just watch this video from Soul Pancake that highlights the awesome power gratitude really has.
  3. PUT DOWN THE NETFLIX
    • I know, Netflix is bae and we all love a Sunday afternoon binge-watching The Good Wife. But if you’re in a funk – Fk related or not – it’s important to put down the laptop and find something intrinsically motivating to do instead. For those of you without a psych background, intrinsically motivated activities are the ones that we do not because we have to or because we get something for it, but because they just feel good to do. For me that’s crafting because let’s face it, I’m an overgrown 5 year old.
  4. Grab a Kit Kat bar (and take a break)
    • Needing a break from dating is perfectly acceptable, but it does not mean you give up hope. If you need to take some time, detox and delete all your dating apps I support you entirely! Untethering your self-esteem from your phone is only a positive thing, but it should not be a permanent state. We are too damn young to give up on finding love, so if that’s what you want, then you’re probably going to have to go out there again and just try. Have some good dates, have many bad ones, have another Kit Kat! Once the burnout passes you’ll be ready to start all over once again.
  5. Fake it till you make it
    • If all else fails, act like you’re killing it and soon enough you will be. Studies have shown that even if you’re feeling sad, physically smiling leads to improved mood despite your best efforts at misery. Resting bitch face is a meme folks, not a way of life.

There you have it, my take on the undiagnosed ailment of the season. I have not shared anything revolutionary in this post, in fact this is more so a message to myself to buck up and take my own advice. Nonetheless, I want to give a shout out to all my homies who feel alone as “the most romantic day of the year” fast approaches. If you want to captain the she-man, male haters club and take a shot at lesbianism, fine. Indulge in the doldrums, depression and double baked cookie dough ice cream for the day, but not for good. In the immortal words of T-Swizzle, shake it off…spring is closer than you think.

From the Archives: Mr. Mind-F*ckboy

Carrie – How do I begin to summarize the most complicated and confusing relationship that encompassed eight months of my life? Although it’s been a while since we last talked and nothing in particular brought him up, I still think of him in late hours of insomniac nights.

Let’s go back to January 2015. Mr. Mind-F*ckboy was essentially a one-night stand of a wild weekend gone awry. Newly single Carrie had just had her first overnighter with a stranger who departed with a “thanks but you know I’ll never see you again.” I suppose that’s what I wanted at the time, that’s why I chose this random out-of-town guy who was visiting the first week of my last semester of undergrad.

Flash forward to the next night and I felt a little confused and off-kilter from my first one night stand. My friend, Mr. Stanford Blach in fact, was going out and told me to join so I put on my glasses and granny panties in a preventative form of birth control. We get to the bar and I’m waiting with my friend’s boyfriend from Ottawa who sees his friend from high school. And he was HOT. We get introduced and I’ve never been so attracted to someone (other than Zac Efron) right off the bat. Later, sipping on my G&T, I spot Mr. MFB brooding in the corner as we make eye contact. He starts moving through a crowd in my direction and I frantically chug my drink in preparation. We hit it off with a surprisingly deep conversation that flowed from classic rock to hook up culture to volun-tourism to neoliberalism and I hadn’t felt that strong of a connection with anyone before. He asked to come home with me and I agreed, silently cursing myself for the granny panties.
Continue reading “From the Archives: Mr. Mind-F*ckboy”

Mr. Lucky Charms

You know when you’re in a situation and there’s no possibility of any hookup happening? Like when you’re vacationing at a cabin in the middle of buttfuck-nowhere-Quebec with your family. Ya, that was me over new years. I left two days after Mr. Lawyer happened and had already mentally prepped myself for a good week of family bonding and copious amounts of food, with no boys to distract me or qualm my ever rising sexual needs. But when does a plan ever work out how you imagined?

Turns out, one of my sisters invited her best friend, who then invited her boyfriend, who then invited his nephew. So, yes, there was a young Irish man that was unrelated to me (hence Mr. Lucky Charms) staying in the cabin. All of a sudden my new year’s resolution plans of being a good girl were squandered.

Mr. Lucky Charms was cute and dorky, glasses and all, and a charming Irish accent with which I only understood about 60% of his words. He was tall and had a lean build, but I was surprised to find out that he was pretty fit (more like discovered while we were in the hot tub).  Even though he was on my radar, I never truly intended for anything to happen. I was surrounded by family after all and in a way, he’s a family friend. It was fun just thinking about hooking up with said foreign man while on vacation. The notion of it was exciting and risqué.

It wasn’t until the second half of the vacation, when I was given the task of giving every single family member one of my infamous massages that a story worthy of this blog began. Eventually, it was Mr. Lucky Charm’s turn. I lathered his back in a healthy dose of massage oil and dove in. Feeling a bit frisky (maybe from the spiked eggnog), I may have added a little bit extra to his massage experience and I’m pretty sure he got the hint. Later that evening, my family decided to make a small trip to Montreal to explore the city and check out the Christmas markets. On cue, both Mr. Lucky Charms and I both decided to stay in the cabin along with my sister’s boyfriend. I feigned tiredness but mostly I just wanted to see how far I could take it with the Irish guy and see if luck really was on my side.

After everyone had left, Mr. Lucky Charms and I hung out and gravitated to the hot tub where things really started getting hot and steamy. It was the first time I had done anything like that but I gotta say, there is something extremely hot about hooking up while it is -20 degrees Celsius in the middle of a pitch black forest with the stars twinkling above. I guess I can check that off my bucket list now. In fact, it was so cold that my hair had froze into icicles coming out of my head. On top of this, there was the added bonus and adrenaline rush with the risk of getting caught by my sister’s boyfriend who was just chilling a few feet from us inside. At one point we were so close to getting caught but somehow (at least to our knowledge) we managed to survive that. My family returned later that night and although they made some suspicious comments, we held our ground and their questions stopped.

It was a lot of fun and we decided to push our luck and try one more time the last night in the cabin. Unfortunately, the layout of this house was open concept and neither of us had a room to ourselves. At this point the only logical option was to wake up at 3am and hookup in the living room. The risk factor was off the charts as my dad was just sleeping down the hall but we managed to keep quiet and once again Mr. Lucky Charms lived up to his name.

The next day we all hopped into our cars and made the trek back to the 6ix. Mr. Lucky Charms was staying in Toronto for one more night before he flew back to Vancouver where he was working. Interestingly, he asked me to hang out for his last night. I agreed and we ended up having an enjoyable time doing the most stereotypical first date shenanigans you can think of: dinner, movie and playing pool.  We held hands throughout even though we were both well-aware nothing would come out of it. I really do think he is a sweet guy and someone I would be open to dating but alas this will just remain an epic story about some vacation I had one time.

One thing is for sure though. The luck of the Irish is a real thing. I gotta get this shit bottled up.

Closing the book or just turning the page

Just as I am confused about being in relationships, I’m also super confused about what it means to end a relationship. It’s been about 2 weeks since I ended it with Mr. High School crush (don’t worry, this is not a post about how sad I am and how much I miss him). Of course, I did have my sobbing on the couch chick-flick watching eating ice-cream sort of day, but mostly because I felt entitled too and used it as an excuse to have zero guilt about not being a productive human for the day. After my tears were out, I managed to get back on my feet and prioritize things that I had neglected when I was so focused on my relationship, mainly school my friends and family and the looming job applications. Life kept going and I almost thought – “Mr. High School Crush who?!” (just kidding).

But, as I kept replaying the break-up in my mind (please tell me that this is something that everyone does), I kept feeling bad. Not the breaking up part – hell I’ve never been so happy to be single, but more so about HOW we ended things. Long distance, in a fight and yelling at each other on the phone. Not exactly the way that I was hoping to show my maturity and care for him.

After talking it out countless times with roomies, friends and family I tried to take the next logical step in a break up and what I was hoping would address my guilt for our over-the-phone- break up fight: closure. Lucky for me, I was back in the six for the week for interviews. Aha, perfect time to get “closure”.  I decided that since I did the dumping, the ball was in my court to initiate the closure aka what I thought was the official end of things – I mean that’s what closure is, isn’t it? I constructed the perfect text (sweet and sensitive but not flirty, caring but not needy, and most importantly not too many emoji’s, exclamation points and haha’s) and managed to arrange a meeting with Mr. High School Crush over the time I was home.

Our meeting day came around, and I felt all confident and ready to face him again. Like I said, nobody did anything wrong – we just drifted and came to a point where being together wasn’t a great option for either of us. Upon deciding at meeting at a Tim’s (perfect place – neutral ground and no opportunity or temptation of break-up sex), the anxiety kicked in. Maybe it was because he announced his own anxiety, or it suddenly dawned on me that this could be the last time I talk to/get to hang out with Mr. High School crush – and I realized at that moment that I didn’t want that.

Of course I arrived first, and of course he was late, but once we were both there things just flowed. We caught up, shared some laughs until the “so…” came. I managed to spit out (a surprisingly eloquent) schpiel about how I still love and care for him, and wanted to apologize for breaking up with him the way I did, and that hopefully he could still somehow be a part of my life. Lucky for me, he felt the same way. His was a little more heart-felt (side note: I find the stereotype of girls being more emotional/sensitive to be a little off – as per my own experiences and with my friends, boys these days are WAY more sensitive and emotional than I ever would have thought), with a few more proclamations of love and hope of a future together sometime down the line,  but we agreed that friendship was what we wanted next. I mean, we love each other as people and get along great when we are just hanging out – our issues only came from being romantically involved with each other. I left our rendezvous feeling pretty happy with how things ended (a little confused with some feelings popping back up – but that’s normal right?) and said bye to my new ‘friend’ with just a hug and subtle kiss on my cheek.

Now I process this because I don’t know if I actually got closure. In my mind, closure was the end of an era, the closing of a book, something that is finito. But for us it seems that our book is still open, but that it’s just changed pages. Today, I woke up to a video on my newsfeed that I just had to send to Mr. High school crush because I knew he’d love it. We chatted, he said he had some to send me too and we went on with our day, because that’s what friends do isn’t it?

I can’t decide if still being his friend is “leading him on” or not letting him get over things with us and the break-up I know I can handle it (didn’t even flinch when my friend announced that he was on Tinder, that says something right)? I’m going to stay true to my inner optimist and think we can be friends –  and I hope we can because I’d definitely rather him be a friend than just a fling or gone forever!