Sunday, June 30, 2013

Never Discount Dancing

Most women love dancing, even if they can’t dance. They love the idea of it rather like romance. Most romantic movies include a scene of a couple slow dancing, which means dancing is right up there with kissing. Let me clarify this by saying I am talking about slow dancing, ballroom, Latin and swing dancing, not fast dancing where the man appears to be having a seizure.
Some men refer to dancing as the ultimate foreplay. What other activity allows a man to ask an unknown woman to dance then promptly put his hands on her body?  I can’t think of any. At any dance, you’ll see women swaying to the beat on the sidelines with a wistful look on their face hoping someone will ask them to dance.
So why don’t men dance more? They think they will look stupid. Unlike football, they didn’t have too many occasions to have a pickup ballroom dancing experience. Well known dance studios tend to strong-arm people into expensive contracts that keep people away from lessons.
One comedian joked that slow dancing was just hugging with music. That’s true…knowing that, any man could dance. If you wanted to a little more pizazz in your style, look up classes in Parks and Recreation Department, which charge reasonable prices. 
My sweetie and I recently took lessons at a nearby restaurant. Most of the couples were older, but amazingly good dancers. I also noticed how much fun the couples had together. Dancing is a cooperative activity where the two participants learn to work together and trust each other.
Like anything, you don’t know, it take practice to become better. Did you hit a homerun the first time you were up to bat? Did you bowl a strike the first time you sent the bowling ball spinning down the aisle? Of course, not, it takes practice to be good at anything.
Couples need shared activity to keep them together. Too often marriages break up with the tired excuse that they drifted apart. I watched the various couples whirl across the dance floor envying their expertise and ease. One of the fleetest footed dancers was a tall gentleman in his eighties. All the women wanted to dance with him. Dancing can make a man into a sought after partner.
Somewhere along the line, men have associated the ability to dance with being gay. A guy who had his girl stolen by a man who could dance probably started this rumor. Ironically, women assume men who can dance will be a good at a variety of other physical activities too.
Height is not a prerequisite for being a good dancer either. I danced with our instructor who was probably a foot shorter than I was and made all the turns and flares with ease.  Therefore, you can’t use height, age, or even weight as a reason not to dance.
I realize finding a partner might make it hard to learn. Ask around. It is possible a friend, co-worker, or even a sibling would be willing to learn with you. Dancing is also a popular Meet-up group activity. Google it and see if a group meets in your area. Checkout Groupon or Living Social that often has a short three-class session on ballroom or wedding dancing. (Another reason you might want to learn how to dance.)
If you want to dance, but don’t feel like you’re ready for a partner. Check out some of the how to videos online. You’ll want one with actual partners as opposed to ones  for cardio fitness.
Once you learn how to dance. One or two dances are a good start. You’ll start looking for places where you can dance. You’ll be surprised at the various places, you’ll be able to exercise your new talent. If you’re online dating, you might look for dates who like to dance as opposed to shying away from them. Most will be anxious to work with a new dancer.
On a recent survey on what women wished men would do. Dancing was number #4.  Shaving was #2 as opposed to stubble face. #3 was dressing up, while #1 was a normal hairstyle. So think men, if you have a decent haircut, are clean-shaven, dress up some and can dance, you should improve your chances of meeting high caliber women.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

"It's Not You"

Who hasn’t heard the classic break-up line; it isn’t you, but it is me. Probably rolled your eyes when you heard it, maybe even replied with a few sharp words of your own, after all if it wasn’t you why break up? Good question, but what if it really wasn’t you.
Often when the ex is dumping you, he or she really believes it is your fault and trots out this tired excuse that he or she thinks makes them sound kind or even heroic.  Well, it doesn’t. It is right up there with changing your social media status without informing you.
It wasn’t you in the ways you might think. Many exes not only leave you, but give you a list of things you could have done differently. This is adding insult to injury. It also allows you to fantasize about getting back together because now you know what to do to make it work. Wrong.
Few people are self-aware enough to know what caused the breakup. Most of the time, a list could have been lifted from the Internet, a girl friend or a magazine. Even the list isn’t original. Sigh.
A recent blog got me thinking. This woman readily admitted that she dated several nice guys who treated her very well. They did whatever she wanted. Gave her everything on her list, but she longed for chaos. She wanted the bad boys who would have sex with her in a skanky bar restroom, then didn’t call her. Probably because they couldn’t even remember her name, let alone her number. She delighted in her behavior by saying she didn’t deserve the nice guys, but she had an interesting life instead.
Really, an interesting life she calls it where she dies from multiple STDs or ends up beaten to death by her latest lover. Of course, she could become an aging bar fly whose bad boys become older, balder and heavier. This type of guy or gal tells you it isn’t you and is gone before the door fully slams shut. You aren’t missing anything there. Too often, they find they aren’t the hot commodity they originally thought and come crawling back. Don’t take them back. You’ll play out the same scene over and over.
Sometimes their ex played out this scene and wants your current squeeze making your guy or gal drop you as if you were dynamite. Why is this? Wasn’t  his or her ex the one who left? With you, your sweetie has a sure thing, he or she is the winner, but with the ex the game is still in play. He or she is anxious to win this time. Often there are children involved and your sweetie wants to put together the whole family set.
Sometimes, the priorities are not stacked in your favor. What this means is you often rank near the bottom after work, friends and sports.  When he has time for you, then you’re good, but often he doesn’t have time for you. Any woman who wants more, often sees the back of this man. This is not a man, who desires a real relationship. He would be better off renting a girlfriend.
 Some women will be so bold as to tell a man he doesn’t have the right look. Many compliant men will buy a new wardrobe, hit the gym, even, get hair implants if they think it will keep the girl. It won’t. This is just another lame excuse. You as a person should be enough. If you aren’t, then obviously you hooked up with the wrong person.
We all have emotional baggage if we managed to make it out of our twenties. Sometimes your ex’s emotional baggage tumbles all over you ending the relationship. It is ironic because often you might be attractive to your sweetie because you resembled the ex in some way. He or she may never confess this to you. The lure of the familiar brought you together, but it is also, what drives you apart. Look like the ex, then, you get loaded with all the baggage from the ex.
Sometimes dates don’t make it into relationship territory.  Someone might stop dating you because you do something like the ex or just happen to like similar things.  I quit seeing a guy because he reminded me of my ex too much. I did tell him. He admitted there was little he could do about it. I liked my ex once too, but I would probably anticipate the relationship going down the same road and maybe even hurry it along a bit. It could even be your name. If you have the same name of a despised ex, then  don’t expect a great outcome unless you are willing to use your middle name.
Odd things will set people off deciding not to continue the relationship from religion, culture, friends and your patented dislike of televised sports. If someone wanted the relationship to work out, then it will, simple as that. Well, maybe not that simple, but they wouldn’t trot out the old breakup line. Nope, they’d stay. Those who walk choose to do just that. It doesn’t mean you’re totally innocent of any wrong doing in the relationship, but trust me, it wasn’t just you.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Staying Through the Date

My sweetie and I recently discussed if it was wrong to stay the entire date when you sensed at the beginning it wouldn’t work. Was he kidding me? Of course, you finish the date, unless you feel unsafe. I did cut a date short when I felt unsafe by inventing an emergency at home.
I asked my warm, charming man if a date ever cut out on him. Twice, but they waited for the food to arrive before they boxed it and left. Well, it was easy to see their agenda. Get the guy to pay for dinner, then go home and eat it while ridiculing the man online.
Let’s see the man paid for a dinner without company. He was humiliated in public. He prepared for a date that didn’t happened and suffered a drop kick to his self-esteem.  Sometimes, we women wonder why men are so embittered against women.
On the other hand, my charming man told me one woman railed against him because he did not walk out on her and did not ask for a second date. She accused him of leading her on by not ditching her.  The telling part of her rant was that other men ditched her on the date…she was that obnoxious. Mere common courtesy rates up there with a marriage proposal now. Are we in seventh grade again, where an accidental meeting of the eyes means a guy likes you? This woman thought so. Should a man be deliberately rude to make his point that the two of you don’t suit? I don’t see it.
I’ve gone out on plenty of first dates with decent men I didn’t click with. I think we had a reasonably good time. I will admit I worked to be personable while I could have shown all the charisma of a dead fish as so often people do when they decide their date isn’t the right fit. How do you know someone is the right fit ten seconds into the date?  You don’t unless they do something extremely icky. Shy guys often warm up after a while. My sweetie didn’t hit his stride until the third date. What if I decided five seconds into the first date that he wasn’t for me? I would have missed this incredible man.
Have you ever had a date stand you up or walk out on you? Rudeness now seems to be the norm as opposed to being the exception. People meet at coffee shops not to waste time or money. Yeah, I can really get to know someone in the ten minutes it takes me to swallow a chai tea latte, especially if the place is crowded. I’ve also warned you about people who spot their date and refuse to acknowledge them because they don’t have the ‘right’ look.
The two guys who cut dates short on me were both dentists. One met me at a crowded coffee bar, told me how great he was, drank his coffee, then left. He showed no interest in me. He told me we wouldn’t suit and left in under eight minutes. The place we met at wasn’t close to my house. In fact, I drove to another city. I spent time getting ready both physically and mentally. He was late. I paid for my own latte. Trust me, I was not under the impression he was leading me on, despite the emails and phone calls it took to get to the actual meeting. I used the incident as a bad date in my new book, Incognito.
My second dentist date was late too. We were meeting at the Red Lobster. I spent about twenty minutes talking to the young bartender and nursing a glass of wine.  My date breezes in, orders a beer, talks about how hard his life his, orders another beer, talks about how he isn’t ready to date, orders a third beer, which he puts away in a prompt fashion. Tells me he’s not ready to date and leaves. Just like that, I waited longer for him to show than the time he was actually there. I went ahead and ordered dinner. The attractive bartender chatted me up and we both agreed the guy was a loser. My question is why did he bother to show up if he didn’t want to date. I look exactly like my pictures so no surprise there. Yes, I paid for my own wine and dinner, but the bartender did buy me dessert. The bartender wrote down his number and when he worked at the bar, in case, I wanted to see him again.  That incident inspired another book, Unexpected Cougar.
Most women and men can’t take bad dates and write them into a book, but then, some do. If you think, you absolutely can’t stand a date, then, leave before ordering. That way you won't be a dinner whore. Apologize for your rudeness or make up an emergency. He knows it is a lie, but it helps him save face.
Guys, if you don’t want to date why go out in the first place? Remember it takes time to get ready for a date. There are other things the woman could have done, instead of gone out with you. If you don’t click, think of these dates as practice. The people who flirt and charm so effortlessly have been on several dates where they stayed for the entire date.  Imagine that.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

The Lure of Younger Women

The other day I found myself reading AARP dating advice column. A woman had written in because all the men her age wanted to date much younger women and she wanted to know the reason why.

Here they are:
1.       Self- esteem issues—remember the guy who had to be with the most stacked cheerleader in high school. This is him forty years later. He believes everyone envies him his date. He is unaware that most people assume he is out with his daughter or granddaughter.
2.       Social Acceptance-men date younger women because it is socially acceptable.
3.       Sex-the man assumes he will get plenty of sex from a younger woman and get it on the first date. I am unsure how true this is, but it is assumption. Just like the assumption that women past forty don’t like sex. Wrong. What they usually dislike are inept lovers.
4.       Looks-before you go ballistic on this one, remember there is a big difference in a middle-aged woman who takes care of herself and one who doesn’t. Men are visual creatures, first. They will probably never find out about your great personality and keen mind if you dress like a grandmother. It goes back to number one they initially judge attractiveness by how you’d look by their side. Women do this with height and hair to men.

It is more than a tight caboose. It’s women looking female. Waiting for my pizza the other night, a couple walks in. I knew immediately the man was a male, but I had a harder time figuring out his androgynous wife. It looked like she was wearing his clothes, no makeup, super short hair, nothing to alert people to her femininity except for her name and higher voice.
5.       Adventure-Some men say they date younger women because they still have a sense of adventure and fun. That may be true. I’ve met men in their forties who had less life in them than my dead grandfather. This isn’t true for all middle-aged women.  In fact, older women are often more playful than their male counterparts.
6.       Caretaker-they want someone younger to care for them. Why not a young thing they tempted with the idea of sports cars and exotic vacations? Besides, she might believe she’ll outlive him.
7.       Not bitter and disillusioned yet, is another reason a younger woman might appeal. Most of you have sat across the table from a man who complains bitterly about his ex-wife and all the other women in his life who’ve done him wrong. Are you the female version of this?
8.       A younger chick makes the guy feel smarter. He knows more than the woman by the virtue of being on the planet longer. If they dated for a while, or even married, the woman might catch up in the smarts department, which in turn would make her less attractive.
9.       Children at the advanced age of forty-eight, he decides he should have one or two. Outside of celebrities, most women in their forties do not want children. They can do the math and realize they might not even live to see their child’s wedding. Besides most women have had children by this age or they didn’t want them.
10.   May-December Romance-it does happen. Women do fall in love with much older men sometimes, but it isn’t always easy. The regular friends feel uncomfortable around this couple. The adult children may object feeling their inheritance is threatened. The relationship may fail when the man’s health or income diminishes. No young bride believes she’ll end up pushing her husband around in a wheelchair, but it does happen. When it does, the women who married the established forty-something fellow with a little silver in his hair often feel cheated and angry. The may take their compensation in spending money extravagantly, plastic surgery and, ironically, younger men.

Do all men go for younger women? Nope, I am pretty old school when it comes to asking men out. I didn’t, but I did make an exception for one charming gentleman twelve years my senior that my online dating service thought would suit. He did not look astounding young, but he had a youthful outlook and pleasant personality. In the end, he felt uncomfortable dating someone closer to his son’s age. He probably felt his friends were judging him and applying the reasons above to his behavior.  I have no doubt he found a sweet woman closer to his age.