Monday, January 9, 2012

The Express Lane To Romance

If you are a committed commuter like me, you just might ride the metro and/or the bus into work 5 times a day in and 5 times a day out. And then you might also have occasion to read the free edition of the Express paper during your ride. Today, I did, and it got me thinking - about HOW TO FIND ROMANCE!

Today's edition, was an especially full and interesting one, (If you have the chance go grab it at, and ran an article entitled "Occupiers Find Romance in Protest." It reports that: "a combustible combination of youthful energy, enthusiasm for shared ideals and tight living quarters has given rise to something else: romance. More than a dozen couples have merged after three months of outdoor living, including one pair who got engaged over the holidays."

It got me thinking....About-someone who commented on my last post, where I shamelessly gushed about happiness with my livin' in sin partner in crime boyfriend. This reader wrote: "You have what we all long for...cherish it." And it made me deeply sad to read those words. I remember longing for someone. Sometimes more than other times. And I know some people who want it so badly they can taste it. I wish everyone out there could find someone. And find someone now. And find that someone for ever.

And it seems like all my single friends are trying. Really trying. Online dating. And off-line dating. Meeting people at the gym. And people at bars. Hooking up and hanging out. Getting hearts bruised and broken and having to start all over again. They want it so bad - they get downtrodden and defeated. They feel lonely. They feel hopeless. A birthday party out in AdMo has lost its luster. One group of girlfriends singles out a member because every where they go she's always "looking" for a guy and not just being in the moment. Not just being around people that make her feel good about herself and just having fun for a change.

I've given a friend this advice time and time again and I think its obvious. And you've probably heard it before. And I know it sometimes hurts coming from someone who has already got a guy. "Easy for you to say," she says to me. But its absolutely true. And the occupier romances show us its true.





1. Live your life. Go out there and do the things you like doing. That you are passionate about. That you enjoy. That you find fun, educational, stimulating, worthwhile.

2. Be positive. Learn to like yourself and even love yourself. If you can't, it will be hard for someone else to. Besides, no one likes a debby downer. People want to be around people who are happy. People are more apt to like someone who is happy. So get happy. Single, and alone and mateless. Imagine, if you have to live the rest of your life alone - are you going to throw your life in the trash? and live through it sad and sulky and depressed? or are you going to find a way to make it full and interesting and be content?

3. YOU WILL FIND SOMEONE. I PROMISE. PROBABLY SOMEONE WITH SIMILAR QUALITIES OR SIMILAR INTERESTS OR SIMILAR FRIENDSHIP OR WORK CIRCLES OR EVEN "SHARED IDEALS." I found my boyfriend playing kickball. The occupiers are finding companionship through passionate political protest. Maybe you like salsa dancing or volunteering at a pet shelter or retirement community. Whatever it is - if you are 1) being energetic and active in your life and 2) being enthusiastic and happy with yourself and others - then you WILL run into the members of the opposite sex that are potential matches for who you REALLY are.

4. MEN ARE EVERYWHERE. I know it doesn't seem like it much of the time since the male to female ratio is abysmal in DC but I promise - they are there. At the kickball games. And occupying Mcpherson's square. They're at a Cafe Citron happy hour, where, for example, a man name "Craig" met his now wife "Allison" back in 2008. (Again, see today's Express under the engagement/marriage announcement section).

I know this is starting to sound like a lame ass pep talk. But I've been giving a lot of rah rahs lately to a lot of single friends. Male and female alike. I don't know how long it is going to take. I don't. I wasn't single between the ages of 14-23. Then I was single for 4 LONG YEARS between the ages of 24-27. And I haven't been single at ages 27 or 28. It's a mystery maybe. But I remember being busy and happy and finding myself between 14-23 and I never had trouble meeting men. After a terrible break-up during law school at age 23 I never seemed to recover. The doom and gloom overshadowed my love life and I believe - drastically hurt my chance to find someone new again soon. When I finally decided to be happy alone at 27 and made conscious and active steps to be satisfied to be single - I found one man immediately thereafter and then another only days after the first relationship fell apart. I was going to parties. And being with friends. And being myself. I was in the places I live and enjoy doing the things I find fun, with the people I find to be decent and kind human beings. Is that a recipe for romantic success? Perhaps.

Good luck out there. Maybe there is no Express Lane or Express Way to Romance. All I know is, there seem to be a lot of lucky ladies (and gentlemen) listed in the Express today who found someone special. You are next. I feel it.



Monday, January 2, 2012

A Buddy Day

January 2nd. The day after New Year's Day. A national, federal holiday for most - meaning a day off of work. But not for those in the private sector. Not for most lawyers I would guess. Certainly, not a day off for me. A lowest, of the low, bottom of the totem pole, nobody-special, young, struggling esquire trying to make my way (or more importantly just make rent), residing in my beloved DC.

We cuddled in bed. Our gorgeous, fluffy, cloud-like comforter, dark blue blanket, soft white sheet encapsulating dreamy marshmallow likeness of a
bed. His arms wrapped around mine. His breath warm on the back of my neck.

"Okay, just five more minutes," I said insistent this time. "I have to go to work."

"Don't go in," he said. "We can have a buddy day." "A buddy day? What's a buddy day," I asked. "Well..." he said, (coming up with a response on the fly), it's a day where best buddies do buddy things." "Is that so? And what do buddies do exactly?" I curiously questioned. "Buddies do things like make sandwiches. And watch TV. And make each other happy." Aha. Genius. A buddy day. Why didn't I think of that?

"I can't. I just can't. You know that. I have to go in. But I wish I could." (And I really wished I could.)

I got up and reluctantly got dressed, brushed my teeth and packed my purse. I searched for my work keys, first in panic that they weren't where they usually hid but was relieved to find them hiding behind a large green candle on the dining room table, that was only brought out for the holiday party we'd held the week before.

I went back into the bedroom and kissed him several times, though he was still half-asleep. "Have a good day," he told me. "Get some rest," I said. I closed the front door to our apartment as softly as I could, even though he wasn't entirely asleep, so as not to disturb him. Then I stepped out into a perfectly quiet, city morning. The air was very chilly. But fresh. The sun beamed down from the sky, full and bright.

Call me crazy, but I like working on holidays. Making the brisk walk to the metro without any traffic to dodge. A few people out walking or jogging, but only a handful of the crowds that are usually emerging from their houses in the early am hours. You can hear the breeze. You can hear the silence. It doesn't happen around here often. It's hard to describe. It feels peaceful. And full. A big space filled with quiet happiness.

The train was equally empty. As were the streets when I emerged out of the subway once again. Only a few of my coworkers had beat me in. It was nice to see them. To exchange new year pleasantries. To know that most of the building was empty. That I could plod along with my work - Relaxed. Easy. Without distraction. Without the tension of the masses emitting from floors above and below. I like working on days like this.

And my mind keeps drifting to the man back at home. To the new year. To what I have and don't have. I don't love my job. I don't have job security. I don't have a lot of money. And yet, I live with and love my best friend. My best buddy. And we make sandwiches together, and watch TV together, and take walks together and make each other happy. And that is everything.

I don't know what 2012 will bring. But I'm excited. And I'm content.