In which I cast into the past and snag a barracuda

So last weekend and early this week was a whirlwind of online dating drama, but things have since mellowed, which is cool only it doesn’t provide much in the way of fodder for this here blog.

To remedy that allow me to turn back the clock, to when I first started online dating, signing up pretty much on a whim and plopping down a whole year’s subscription on eHarmony — why not just a six months, or only three even, just to test the waters? Why? Ah, well. Matters not now. Nothing to be done about it.

This particular cast into the past lands us firmly at the end of October, just before Halloween, the most Generation X of all the holidays in my humble but masterfully astute opinion — do not question my author-a-tie! In fact, it was exactly the 30th of the month, when I was first matched with the first woman I would ever date via any online service — I was on yahoo singles (or whatever it is) briefly during my separation but had no luck with it, unlike my ex but that’s a whole other gripe. Anyhoo… back to my online first, the woman who popped my online dating cherry. Let’s call her, oh, say ….Lydia.

Lydia was anything but a tatooed lady — trust me I had ample access and time to investigate — but she was very cool all the same. Or so I thought. What snagged me was how much we had in common in terms of movies and a penchant for reading and TV. Also, she was quite witty, at least at first. Plenty of witty banter  via eHarmony email, which Lydia suggested we abandoned for regular email since being eHarmony wasn’t very, in her words, “work friendly,” by which I now understand her to mean that she was at least slightly embarrassed to be utilizing. I wonder, is she still? Meh. Hardly matters now, does it.

What followed was a barrage of emails, at first, and then chatting via gmail chat. The more we communicated the more we seemed to click. Finally, Lydia suggested we meet. I was all for that. I suggested either Royal Oak or Ferndale as there is much to do  in both places. She put the kibosh on both. “No Royal Oak. No Ferndale,” she insisted. Fine by me although I was more than a bit curious as to why. What was wrong with these places? I supposed I would find out in time. Instead, we met at a bar in Troy, little neighborhood place. We had  drink and talked, and were comfortable enough to order some food. We talked some more. And it seemed to me that the more we talked the more we seemed to click. I was excited to hit it off with someone so quickly. I had been more than tad skeptical of the whole process, and not willing to get my hopes up. But I was wrong. This chick was cool.

And then… Well, apparently for our second date I was not nearly Johnny-on-the-spot enough for her likingI was chastized via chat for not asking her out in the right way, in the right time. Would we have ever gone out had she not suggested it? Fuck if I knew. I was instructed that I needed to ask her out early in the week so that she could properly plan her week and weekends. And fuck me if I didn’t agree. Anyone I told this too insisted it was a red flag. And I did not deny it but for some reason I ignored the warnings.

So we went out on a few more dates through November, leading up to her birthday, for which I decided to get her something. Nothing serious, something fun. I got her days of the week underpants because we both liked the movie “When Harry Met Sally”. I did not expect her to ever even wear them. Also, I got her Reese’s Peanutbutter Cups because chocolate and peanutbutter are her favorite. And a little convertible Hot Wheels car because we’d had a joke — she’d asked me what I was getting her for her bday, and I said, nothing big, just a car. She requested a convertible. There was also a card and a collection of short stories that I hoped she might like, “Bad Behavior”, by Mary Gaitskill. She seemed to like the gifts all around.

Things progressed into December and we actually spent part of Christmas Day together. I introduced her to my brother and his partner. They seemed to like her. My birthday came up and she got me two seasons of SCRUBS on DVD. And we made plans to spend New Year’s Eve together, which we did. I made her dinner, homemade pasta and meatballs, a salad, some wine, a dessert. By New Year’s Day she was done with me. It was clear. She just wouldn’t or couldn’t say it. And for some reason I hung around. Still not sure why.

There were plenty of other red flags and drama and gipes I’d love to expound upon. But I’ll get into those next time. I’m tired.

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What the hell happened to Fall?

I mean, yeah, the leaves turned and fell and it was all oooh, aaah pretty and all that, but come on. Halloween was like 70 freaking degrees and a little more than a week later it’s snowing. What’s that all about?

It means one thing, for sure, that I probably missed my best chance to rake leaves. I hate raking leaves. One of the big reasons why, when I was younger, before I was a parent, that I never wanted to own a house. Cleaning gutters sucks too, something else that needs to be done. Plus, we got this skunk that likes to scent around our house and man it just creep inside and take days and burning multiple candles down to nothing to get rid of it.

Also, I missed my chance yet again, to plant tulip bulbs. Screw the pooch on that one again.

But there is one cool thing about the snow. Last night I was watching it fall through our front picture window. We have a street lamp on our corners and the snow coming down through that cone of light makes a nice image. Reminds of when my daughter was younger. I got up in the middle of the night and looked in on her and found her bed empty. Of course, I freaked more than a little. She was only about 3 and if she did get out of bed she’d come straight to our room. I hurried down the hallway to the living room and found her lying on the couch. She’d climbed up and was snuggled under her Dora blanky, looking out the window. It was snowing. When I asked he what she was doing, she just turned to me and said, “Daddy. I’m looking at the light.”

“Yeah,” I said. “I can see that.” Then I lay down on the couch with her and we watched the light and snow together, eventually falling asleep.

One of the best moments I’ve ever had with my daughter, who is not almost 8 and growing up way too fast.

My favorite cereal

Over the weekend, my wife and daughter went shopping and brought me back a treat — Count Chocula cereal! Mmmmm. Sugar crack!

Actually, I’m pretty sure it was my daughter’s idea. She’s excited to be a vampire for Halloween this year. In fact, she wants my wife and I to be vampires as well. A vampire family. Which kind of puts a kink in my plans.

See, I was going to be “Cornelius” from Fight Club, which is one of the phony names that the Edward Norton characters uses when he goes “touristing” in self-help groups.

My plan was to wear khakis and a dress shirt and tie. Then use make-up to mess up my face, you know, like I’d been in a fight or whatever. And slap on one of those Hello! My name is __________ nametag stickers that they give you at any kind of lame function, especially in corporate cubeland. When people asked me what I was supposed to be I was going to say, “I’m a member of a club, but I’m not supposed to talk about it.” And then I ‘d see who gets it, i.e. who is cool, and who does not, i.e. who is not cool.

Of course, I’ll probably just end up doing the vampire thing, which is cool.

Anyhoo… my original point was that Count Chocula is not may favorite cereal, although I have been eating it and getting the jitters from the all the freaking sugar. Oh baby — sugargasm! Addy doesn’t really like it, she just likes to pick out the little marsh mellows, which is fine by me. I’d rather she didn’t eat that crap anyway.

My favorite cereal has to be Lucky Charms.

It’s is similar to Count Chocula, but without all the chocolate. Too much of a good thing, you know.

Actually, of the monster cereals I’m probably more partial to Frankenberry:

And Boo Berry:

However, it has been so long since I’ve had Fruit Brute that I’d need to do another taste test to confirm the precise order of my preference:

But back to Lucky Charms. I’ve long wondered what were the original marsh mellow shapes. I’d always intended to write General Mills to ask, but of course never did. Too much work. This was before the internet, google or wikipedia, which of course makes it easy to check. So why haven’t I until now? It boggles the mind.

According to wikipedia the original marsh mellows were “in the shapes of pink hearts, yellow moons, orange stars, and green clovers.” Now I can sleep at night.

And if you think that is a lot to write about cereal, check out the book Ceralizing America, which is actually quite fascinating.

Of course, you can’t really talk about cereal without talking about Saturday morning cartoons, at least not if you’re a GenXer, which I am. Duh! You know, I’ve often thought that would make a subtitle to the label Generation X: the cereal and Saturday morning cartoon generation. What do you think?

What’s your favorite cereal?