Monday, March 28, 2011

A Break From Blogging

I'm just taking a self-imposed three day break from blogging. I need to focus on my upcoming GRE test and job interview. I'll be back shortly, but maintaining three blogs is a lot of time that could be better spent improving my future, you know?

See you all Thursday or Friday!

Gloria's Romantic Monday: Having The Means To Make It Happen

***Gloria is a friend of mine I know from church. She is a single mother. She has a boyfriend, Gregory, who we all love and her son's father, Rufus, who we all hate. She is fun-loving and hilarious. Gloria is the type of friend who'd be there for you at a party, when things get tough, or even if you need help applying for school.***
Read Romantic Monday posts.


Last week, I talked about Gloria's wedding that will happen at some point in the future. It will be sooner rather than later. As in, at some point in the next two years. I talked a bit about bridesmaids and the fact that Gloria will probably not have any.


This week, I don't have anything new to report. Of course, that doesn't mean there's anything new, I just don't know anything new to add to the blog. Therefore, I'm going to do my thing out on the internet, seeing what I could find that would relate to Gloria's current romantic situation.


Google search term #1: waiting to get married.
Found: all types of crazy stuff. Everything from people waiting to get married until homosexuals have equal rights under the law to people encouraging waiting til after age 25 because of divorce statistics. There was even this one trippy article about this woman lambasting early marriage but offering a disclaimer of her mother's and father's multiple marriages. I'm going to try again.


Google search term #2: marriage without a wedding.
Found: Some interesting articles about not having the means to get married, which sort of applies to Gloria and Gregory. Actually, reading it further it sounds just like them (except the common law marriage thing in NY).

It was in Yahoo Answers. You can read it here. There was another article where a woman was talking about a man who was refusing to have an engagement or a wedding, he just wanted to go to a courthouse. That definitely sounds nothing like Gregory.


I think the first article is the one I'll go with. The woman in the Yahoo Answers thing talks about wanting to make what they have official because they have children. Gloria has a son and so does Gregory. Gloria is interested in making what they have official and starting their family together instead of still operating as two different family units.


If they had the means to, I know they'd probably be married--or at least engaged--already. But I don't know how far from "the means" they can be before Gregory is still trying to wait to see if the situation improves.


I just don't even understand this sentiment. I think it's better to build together rather than build separately and try to combine. But that's just me. I guess we'll see what will happen with Gloria and Gregory.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Michelle's T.G.I.Fridays: 10 Steps For Cyclical Casual Relationships

***Michelle is a girl that grew up next door to me and we attended the same church. Now she's in her early 20s and living the single life. She goes on these dates that are either lovely or horrific. She's slightly terrified at the thought of committing to someone any time soon. And of course, she has the occasional man who really catches her eye and her heart.***


Quick Recap [The last post I wrote about Michelle was two weeks ago. In that post, I related two stories of updates about men from Michelle's recent romantic life. The basic story is that she received apologies from both of these men in just a short period of time about the crappy way they both treated her. I was very glad to report the apologies because that meant I could stop planning how to end these two guys.] Read T.G.I.Fridays posts.


This week, I want to talk about Michelle's dating pattern. It's happened more than once now and I think it is an official trend (not a scientific trend, but who cares about whether it's statistically sound?) What happens is pretty interesting. I may get some steps out of order or they may not apply to each guy, but I hope I've got the pattern down.


1. Michelle meets a guy in a group setting.

2. Her and the guy cross paths a couple more times over a period of time. During this time, they realize they have an interesting chemistry that may be worth exploring.

3. The guy lets Michelle know he's interested and gauges her interest. She's usually noncomittal.

4. At this point, Michelle compares the new possibilities guy to whoever is currently on the roster (and has yet to secure an exclusive commitment).

5. If this guy has potential and isn't an immediate threat to her current lifestyle, she lets things evolve with him to see where they can go.

6. The new guy decides he's some version of smitten with Michelle and requests things be taken to the next level. He may or may not have worked to build a good foundation with Michelle that would support such a request.

7. Michelle responds with, "I don't know" at first because she really doesn't know. She tries to figure out if this guy could really be worth that scary exclusive commitment.

8. The other men orbiting around just happen to try and make a rebound, further complicating her decision.

9. Right when Michelle is truly considering taking that leap into the unknown with the new man, he decides his patience has run out or his insecurities have built up or he's met someone else who doesn't have to think as hard about taking the leap.

10. Things fall apart, they decide to become friends, they start back at Step #1.


This is Michelle's pattern. At least it has been since I began writing blog posts about her love life. It's quite an interesting pattern and I'm dying to know if she thinks it's an accurate pattern and what she plans to do about it.


It's actually a perfect pattern for someone who isn't looking to be tied settled down. She graduates with a Bachelor's degree in three months and then moves on to get her Master's immediately after. All the men she's recently come across have been particularly selfish, so Michelle's pattern definitely keeps her safe from getting in too deep with any one guy.


Besides, she's only 23. Now is the time to date and have fun and get to really learn yourself as an adult. She will learn her adult preferences and her must-haves. I think she's right on track. If she wanted to be married tomorrow, she'd be screwed. Actually, she wouldn't. She'd just stop at Step #6 with the next guy and marry him. Thank God she's not ready to settle down, haha.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Big Bad Thursday: Everyone Around You Supports You, Yay!

***Big Bad Thursday is all about Bad. He's one of my best friends and was a charming, if commitment-phobic bachelor. He finally realized a woman was worth giving up complete and total bachelor-hood. So now Bad and Jordan are in love and working towards building a life together. They live in a wonderful apartment in Chicago and they are quite a fabulous couple.***
Read Big Bad Thursday posts.


Last week, I linked to an article that sort of describe Bad and Jordan. I thought it pointed out an interesting trend that even though they were cohabitating, they weren't on the fast track towards marriage. At least, I don't think they are. They're focused more on enjoying each day and enjoying each other without always thinking about the logistics of where they stand and where they're going.


This week, I want to talk about integration. One of the hardest things to do when you're in a relationship is learning to mix and match your lives when you've got such active lives in existence before each other came along. Bad and Jordan both have full lives, so making an effort to combine those lives was probably no easy task.


Bad is a good friend and always there for his people. But spending time with friends at the drop of a hat isn't a priority anymore once you've made a commitment to someone, to living with them and sharing your lives. But Bad did good. He's with a woman who can roll with him. I would never think of inviting him to something and not inviting her too. Jordan is just a joy to be around and she is a perfect compliment to Bad, and she's great all by herself as well.


Because Bad chose very well in the woman he's partnered with, it makes it that much easier for the people in his world to join in in support of the relationship. I know of a couple (none of the ones I write about on this blog) who have difficulties when it comes to choosing where to celebrate holidays. Where ever then end up, it causes problems for the other person's family.


Bad and Jordan don't have that problem. They plan their celebrations around their own two schedules and then they work their families into it. I know they spent time with both her family and his over the Christmas/New Year's holiday, and I didn't hear anything about any struggles or feelings of neglect because both their families welcome their person's Significant Other (SO) with open arms.


A great example of this welcome is that Jordan is going out to lunch with my mother and me this afternoon. We're all meeting downtown to have lunch in the Walnut Room at Macy's. I mentioned before (maybe on my main blog) that my mom likes reaching out to people. My mom sees Bad as family, he's like an extra son to her in addition to Lion, so reaching out to Jordan is pretty much the same as her reaching out to my brother's fiancee.


I bet that having the approval and support of your friends and family makes things easier. It doesn't make the internal stuff of a relationship easier, but it has to help the overall stuff.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Internet Connection Problems

I'm sending this from my cell. I can't connect to the internet. I don't know if my brother is eating the internet or simultaneously downloading eight videos, but for some reason, whenever he is home, there is limited internet access. Stupid XBox 360 and iPad.

But I will be back hopefully later today to blog today's posts.
Ce Ce Savage

Lion's Life Wednesday: Not Yet Considering The Future

***Lion is my best friend from college. He's a very focused young man working on getting his MD. This focus makes having a love life a very difficult undertaking. But he's making it happen somehow.***
Read Lion's Life Wednesday posts.


Last week I talked about perceptions, and trying to figure out how I could invest more in the relationship between Lion and his girlfriend Rudy.


This week, I don't really have much more to say about that. I want to talk about bit about Lion's career path and how that may affect his relationship over the coming years.


Lion is in medical school (in case you didn't read the leading paragraph), and he's super busy all the time. For instance, right now he's doing his OB/GYN rotation and he's barely able to get two days off for us to go down to Florida back to our alma mater to hang out with our friends that are still there (along with his girlfriend Rudy).


He works ton of hours and is always busy studying for the shelf exam at the end of the rotation, trying to impress his supervisors, and trying to maintain his sanity. Most of the time when he speaks to Rudy, it's through text message. With her work schedule and classes, they have very little mutual free time.


I've never heard Lion describe the two of them as "close." But they do seem to really like each other and really love each other. And luckily, neither of them is needy and needs a lot of time from their significant other (SO). But these two are in their mid-20s. Women start to get the itch about the future and wonder what's next. These two have been involved on and off for years now.


Lion knows a few things for sure about his future. He wants to go to residency somewhere warm. He's not sure what type of medicine he wants to practice yet. He may get married, but right now he can't even imagine having children. He wants to be able to focus on something other than being a dad.


Rudy wants to be married and have a family. That definitely doesn't match what I just said about Lion. As they're approaching the end of his medical school career, he graduates in June 2012, they will have some decisions to make. They haven't discussed where he's applying to residency programs (he doesn't know himself yet) and they haven't discussed the possibility of her making plans to join him wherever he is.


He's apprehensive about that discussion because he feels is she and he move to the same city where ever he does his residency (it won't be a city either of them live in now), then he will be implying that they have this future that leads to the traditional milestones of an aging relationship. Not exactly the message he wants to send.


That is a lot to sort out on top of his career decisions. But knowing all the intricacies is bound to help the blogosphere understand why I'm dying to observe the two of them together in two weeks when we get down to Florida.

Camille's Wishful Wednesday: Trying To Stay Single Without Cooperation

***Camille is a friend of mine I know from church. She is classified on another blog I read as a "hopeless romantic", and I think that describes her pretty well. I also think she's incredibly well-balanced and able to work on multiple parts of herself at once. She is a law student, a Sunday school teacher, and an all-around good person. She has some pretty concrete ideas about men and the type of man she'd like to end up with. But she's doing the in-my-20s-dating-follies thing as well.***

Side Note [my internet is still running super slow, but I'm going to try to post so I am not skipping a day I actually have something to share]

As soon as you make it clear you're trying to be single, men start coming out of the woodwork. I've already talked about Bachelor #1 and Bachelor #2, but it's not just them. I added to it to with introducing her to one of Easy's best friends. But in my defense, Easy made that happen, I wasn't trying to do all of what happened.



And now one of Camille's family friends is trying to hook her up with someone purely because the guy is also in law school. I guess that means they have a lot in common. But seriously, why should someone have to send out a mass e-mail about their intended single-hood unless they risk being setup every five minutes.



I'm interested to see how Camille handles all of this with people constantly saying, "I may have someone for you." She's still working on herand focusing on her. With that, and law school, I doubt she has time to squeeze in working on a new relationshp. But if the right guy comes along, screw being single.



I'm sure the right guy woud encourage her to spend all that time in the library and to maintain her new healthy lifestyle strategies. But I'm betting most of these guys floating around (technically there's a whole handful now) are probably not The One. At least not right now.


So Camille met the guy I liked for her (not in a setting where they could actually get to know each other though) and she's going to meet up with the guy suggested by the family friend. She's heading to that introduction with an "as friends: mind set. And there's still Bachelor #1 and #2.  But for now, she's single and embracing herself and her goals. If only the rest of us would let her alone to do that.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Tip Top Tuesday: Why Be Single? It's The Best Option

***My girl Top is unique and one-of-a-kind. This makes the story of her love life especially interesting. Just when you think you've got her figured, she makes an unexpected move. She's my career-minded friend who's always focused on self-improvement. She's also super-independent yet a closet nurturer. Read and learn how to be fabulous.***
Read Tip Top Tuesday posts.


Last week, I linked to three posts all with "Single and Happy" in the title. I was glad to have found articles that discussed a woman's desire to be single and that she may actually be happier as a single person and prefer that to being in a relationship.


This week, I don't really have much to add in terms of Top's life and her single-ness. If there's more going on, we just haven't discussed it yet. But I also don't want to troll the internet looking for links to post again. So I will talk about what I think are some of the influences on Top that inform how she views the world and responds to it. She and I haven't discussed this yet, so I'm also interested in hearing what she has to say after she reads what I have to say.


Top's Family
The women in Top's family have an interesting history with men. From multiple husbands, or long marriages that aren't as happy as they could be, Top has a lot of examples of women who end up in situations they would rather not be in. That's not unusual by any means, or at least I don't think so because the same thing applies to women in my family. But I think as the years wear on, people find themselves in less than satisfying situations. I think that seeing this in a lot of the relationships of her family might make Top hesitant about entering a situation that seems doomed destined to turn out that way.


Top's Friends
Most of Top's friends have messy situations when it comes to relationships. One has been pining after the same man for well over a decade with no indication from him since they broke up around college that they ever had a chance of re-kindling their romance. Another is with a man she's settling for, but is embracing the comfort now even though she's sure to regret it later. Another has desires for serious relationships, but he is far too carefree to make a relationship work for a long period of time. Lord only knows how one should describe what types of mess I've gotten into over the years that she's had to help me through. And Top is the sounding board for these friends. How can you watch these people fall into pitfall after pitfall and think you'll be the one lucky person to find someone who won't turn you into a mess?


Top's Relationship History
I don't want to go into too much detail, cause I never sought permission to discuss these matters. But all Top's boyfriends were great until they weren't anymore. And when they weren't great anymore, they weren't just bad, they were horrific and terrible and ghastly. It was bad. She has more than one ex who still calls her regularly because of not being able to move on or some sense of still wanting to be involved or for whatever unhealthy reason. Who would want to add another person inevitably to those ranks?


I don't see Top as a pessimistic person (more realistic, not very optimistic) and I doubt she sees these situations the way I do. But I just think that having all of that around you invariably makes one question whether it's worth it to try and get involved with someone who will turn out to be a mess, or selfish, or a burden over time. If you look at it that way, it's definitely better to be single. Definitely.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Gloria's Romantic Monday: Bridesmaids And Weddings

***Gloria is a friend of mine I know from church. She is a single mother. She has a boyfriend, Gregory, who we all love and her son's father, Rufus, who we all hate. She is fun-loving and hilarious. Gloria is the type of friend who'd be there for you at a party, when things get tough, or even if you need help applying for school.***


Last week, I spoke a bit about Gloria's trip to Texas, and I have bad news about the hopeful ending to last week's post. Gloria is more sure than ever that she wants to move to Texas. She really hates the cold and after her trip, that type of climate is right up her alley.


I talked about the schools and the ever-decreasing budget, and she said there were pockets with good schools, and she'd just move there. I'm so sad that she's planning on leaving. I guess it's good because that means I'll have somewhere great to go visit. Also, I can't be selfish. I'm talking about moving to St. Louis and then to New York City. She can certainly go to Texas.


Gloria is one of my favorite people to talk to about the future. She's in a similar boat that I am. She and Gregory have been together for less than a year, yet they are sure the other is The One and they have plans to get married sooner rather than later, but they aren't officially engaged yet.


Gloria wants something very different from what I want though. She's being very realistic about her and Gregory's financial situation and the fact that they both have small boys. She's decided that she doesn't want a big fancy wedding, or even a reception. She just wants to stroll over to the church with wedding license in hand, a couple of close friends and family, and get married on the day of their choosing without all the stress, planning, and financial burden.


That led to an interesting conversation about bridesmaids because Gloria doesn't intend to have them. From what she said, I gathered that her boyfriend Gregory also doesn't mind if they have this wedding and he doesn't have to choose groomsmen. I think he'd like to give Gloria a nice wedding, but he's not so for it that he's against her super small wedding idea.


So back to Gloria and her lack of bridesmaids. One of the girls in our group, who I'm pretty sure I've never mentioned by name, has been asked to be a bridesmaid in the wedding of another girl from our church who recently got engaged. We were all surprised, asking if they were even friends and how the rest of us had missed that. She didn't explain, but said that she had agreed, especially since the wedding wasn't to be until 2013. She figured she could purchase a dress and show up the day of the wedding with no extra fuss. I'll be interested to see if it turns out that way or not.


The discussion then turned to whether or not you had to ask certain people to be bridesmaids even if you weren't close friends. And also should you ask someone back to be a bridesmaid just because you were a bridesmaid in their wedding. All I'm saying is, Gloria is very lucky that she will probably not have bridesmaids when she gets married. Our little close group of friends from our church has done a good job of having our friendships transfer from being teenagers to being adults. But there are some of us within the group who were never very close.


Gloria doesn't have to deal with that whole situation, or with dragging close friends in from out of town for the wedding. I know this is a lot of wedding talk for a chick who isn't even engaged yet. But I think it's good to talk about these things to make sure you're on the same page about the near future. It's no different than talking about other future things, like career plans, where to live plans, etc.


Gloria and Gregory seem to be on the same page about the big stuff, he is on board with moving to Texas. But I don't know how he feels about the wedding. Gloria just keeps saying that he wants everything to be perfect before they take the next step. I hope that's a more realistic sentiment than it sounds. I'm just excited for Gloria that she will be sooner rather than later taking a big step towards the future she's been dreaming about with a man who truly loves her.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Sonny's Sunday: Going Out? Not Without My Fiancee

***Sonny is an old friend of mine. We went to elementary, middle, and high school together. He's also my friend who's doing the super-adult thing. He and his new fiancee Cher just bought a house. They're working on planning a life together. Even with all that stability, their love life is still interesting.***
Read Sonny's Sunday posts.


Last week, I was giving props to Sonny and Cher for appearing to not have succumb to a problem that plagues some most engaged people. They know that their life doesn't revolve around planning their wedding. They are allowing their life to develop together. I think they know that at the end of the day, their time as engaged couple will only be a drop in the bucket compared the the length of a life that they plan to share. And Cher is a vegan. That chick isn't going anywhere anytime soon.


This week, I want to talk about something that I've mentioned before on this blog that troubles me. Last Thursday, Easy had this idea that his friends and mine could all go out for St. Patrick's Day. That type of celebration isn't likely to happen again in  years to come as we progress through out 20s. I certainly don't know too many black folks in their thirties going out for a night on the town with their friends for St. Patty's Day. Gloria would have come out without Gregory. And Jordan. They didn't Thursday night, but that was a whole fiasco that I'll explain in a post on my main blog.


So we had these plans, and we invite several friends. Sonny and Cher are two of the friends that I invited out with us. Sonny said he thought it would be great fun to go hang with the drunken people on the north side and he would check with Cher when she got home from work.


I told him that she might want to come out, but even if she didn't because of work the next morning, he could still come out. And of course, that didn't happen. I didn't see either of them that night. I know for a fact that Sonny had nothing to do that night. It sucks that he wasn't able to come out because Cher wasn't able also.


I probably shouldn't make comparisons, but


I don't know if I even want to encourage that they get more comfortable spending time apart. It seems unrealistic in this global world structure to demand that you, as a couple, spend all your free time together. But there are still people who do it. They can be attached enough to each other to truly desire to never be apart. I guess if they both end up with local careers and family close by, there wouldn't be a need to get used to one person being out of the country, like Bad and Jordan or Easy and me. And because they don't have a ton of friends outside of each other, I guess they don't really fall into the Gloria and Gregory box either.


This is not the first time I've mentioned this, definitely not in this blog. I'm still trying to figure out if it's something I should get involved with. I just miss Sonny. I miss the time we used to spend together. When he's with Cher, he's still him completely, there just doesn't seem to be the usual flow of information. Catching up like friends do is a much more arduous process. And my attempts to be friends with Cher outside of Sonny haven't gone well.


Maybe that's what I'll do. I'll try again to be friends with her outside of him. If she and I can connect and she starts to think it's a good idea that she has girl time outside of him, then maybe it won't be this terrible thing if he spends time without her too. I don't know if it will work, but I should try. Because I don't ever want him to feel stifled and plus, she and I had a lot of fun together that one time we went out dancing with Bad.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Blog Issues

I've been having issues loading my blogs. This one hasn't really had a problem, but frustration with the other two blogs has led me to just give up until I sorted out a solution. I have done what I could with content removal and that seems to have solved the problem. So you will be back to your regularly scheduled drama tomorrow or the next day. It's really harder to blog everyday living in Chicago than it is in St. Louis.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Big Bad Thursday: A Little Bit Married

***Big Bad Thursday is all about Bad. He's one of my best friends and was a charming, if commitment-phobic bachelor. He finally realized a woman was worth giving up complete and total bachelor-hood. So now Bad and Jordan are in love and working towards building a life together. They live in a wonderful apartment in Chicago and they are quite a fabulous couple.***
Read Big Bad Thursday posts.


Last week, I linked to a post that talked about housewarmings. I figured it was appropriate since Bad and Jordan are only a number of months into co-habitating. And they are planning on moving to a place with more space soon, so they have a lot of room to work with in terms of celebrating having a home together.


But I don't really have anything to update about their relationship right now. I will hopefully have something next week. I'm trying to get to go out with Easy and I and some of our friends for St. Patrick's Day. Observing them together as a couple always gives me something to blog about. And you tend to get more detailed updates when it is face to face.


But since I have nothing right now, I'm trolling the internet looking for something. Headed to Google to see what new links I can find. The question is what to Google? Bad and Jordan have been together for a while, and it doesn't seem like they're in any rush to get married. So I will google "dating, but no marriage in sight" and see what that gets me.


I thought I might get a whole bunch of self-help or whiny articles about women who were frustrated at not getting married, but I found a really interesting article. It's on CNN.com and it was posted up last June. It's an interview with a woman who wrote a book about couples who are "a little bit married." They have never tied the knot and yet they still make long-term life decisions around each other without the rush to the altar. You can read the article here.


I love this article, especially in terms of Bad and Jordan. I don't know what will happen with them and marriage, but I'm not too worried about it because it seems that they are good where they are. They have each decided the other person is the person they want to be with and they make life decisions together and with each other in mind. She moved to Chicago to be with him (and go to grad school), so they are the exact type of couple described in this article.


And this article does not pass judgement, it simply points out a trend. I'd be interested in reading this woman's book to further explore her reasoning she sees behind the trend other than financial independence and availability of birth control.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Camille's Wishful Wednesday: Single Self-Improvement

***Camille is a friend of mine I know from church. She is classified on another blog I read as a "hopeless romantic", and I think that describes her pretty well. I also think she's incredibly well-balanced and able to work on multiple parts of herself at once. She is a law student, a Sunday school teacher, and an all-around good person. She has some pretty concrete ideas about men and the type of man she'd like to end up with. But she's doing the in-my-20s-dating-follies thing as well.***
Read Wishful Wednesday posts.


Last week, I linked to a post and talked a bit about Camille looking for Mr. Right. I was interested to see what her reaction was to how she's been characterized in my blog. I told her I was trying to make her come off as a woman who's searching for the right man for her, but in the meantime, focusing on improving herself as a person and embracing being single. She's no Bridget Jones.


Camille did read the posts and she said with the exception of talking about her reaction to an acquaintance of ours getting engaged, I had pretty accurately captured the image I was trying to portray. I think that women who are in Camille's position can sometimes come off a desperate and leaving their lives on hold while waiting for the man who will make their world complete. But that's definitely not Camille. She's getting a law degree, working her way through a diet and exercise regimen to make herself healthier, and working on her relationships with friends and family without worrying about if today is the day she'll meet Mr. Right.


I admire that so much, and it makes me proud to be her friend. I don't do desperation, and I'm glad none of my friends do either. About Camille's law degree, she's making moves not just in the classroom, but also with her extracurriculars. She's getting involved and doing the networking necessary to secure job offers and internships that will help make her career.


About Camille's diet, she's technically on a diet because what's she's doing now is not a full lifestyle change, but it's a temporary change to jump start a lifestyle change. She has cut out fried foods and all bread and most other carbs too. She's already being accused of getting all skinny by her classmates. She's making her health and body image a priority and it's not because of a man.


All of this does have a cute story that comes with it. I mentioned Bachelor #1 two weeks ago. This guy has popped up again. Camille was out to dinner with her mother and the owner of the restaurant brought her out a complimentary bread pudding free of charge for dessert. Side note: I love having pretty friends where stuff like this just happens. She texted me, "bread pudding! oh no!" But then she came up with a great solution.


She decided to take the dessert to go and bring it to Bachelor #1. This was cute because it's a classic move of a girl to bring dessert (usually cookies) to the guy she likes. They're just friends, not even dating or anything like that, but I thinks it's a good gesture to encourage him and help his potential interest in her grow.


Also, this dessert sharing tells me something, this guy is someone she sees and spends time with. They're on Spring Break right now and bread pudding doesn't hold forever. She went to the restaurant last Thursday I believe, and I know she wasn't going to keep that bread pudding for eleven days until classes resume. Even if nothing happens between Camille and Bachelor #1, it's nice that she has that male attention that fits into (and doesn't interfere with) her focus on herself.

Lion's Life Wednesday: Changing Perceptions

***Lion is my best friend from college. He's a very focused young man working on getting his MD. This focus makes having a love life a very difficult undertaking. But he's making it happen somehow.***
Read Lion's Life Wednesday posts


Last week, I linked to an article that talked about how to have a successful long-distance relationship. Lion and his girlfriend Rudy measured up pretty, well, at least according to that article. That was definitely a fun post to write.


This week, I want to talk about perceptions. Last weekend, Lion had some time off between rotations. I think I mentioned it in my main blog, but not in the detail I'm about to cover here. In the time he had off, he and I hung out twice. That was a long for us since he's always so busy with school.


The first night, we hung out in Central West End and had ice cream and just sat and talked. We got to catch up. We speak on the phone and through text, but the catching up always seems to be more in-depth when you're face to face. Anyone else notice that? So we're catching up and I realize that because of our previous discussions being mostly via cell phone, we'd come up with some interesting perceptions of each other's relationships.


He had come to this conclusion that my boyfriend Easy is this emotional mess of a man. He's very wrong about that. The man is just not emotionally stifled like most of the people in my world. But I had this perception of "poor poor Rudy" when it comes to Lion's girlfriend. I know that they want different things out of life and that means they probably have an expiration date.


I keep hoping that she'll be okay with not having kids if it means being with Lion or that he'll suddenly decide he wants to be a dad. But making long-term decisions based on anything except who you are at that moment is silly. You can't plan on the hope that someone will change because if they don't, it's your fault for not accepting who they were when you signed up for those long term plans. But when it comes to Lion and Rudy, knowing they probably have this expiration date hasn't stopped them from becoming boyfriend and girlfriend and falling in love.


I was mostly thinking about her and how much it will hurt if they don't last. Also, I thought she would look back on their time together and all the years spent and she would feel like she'd wasted her 20s on him. But I never really thought about how it would affect him. I don't think Lion would feel like his 20s had been wasted, but I do think it would suck for him. He loves this girl and losing her will still hurt, no matter what reason or when it happens.


But I'm glad that he is doing what he can to make the most of the time they know for sure they'll have together. Next month should produce some great stories, I hope.


Now on to the other perception. The second night Lion and I hung out, Easy came with us, as well as one of his frat brothers. We went for drinks at the bar that Lion's family owns, then we went to a club. A strip club. I'd never been to a strip club with Lion or with Easy or in St. Louis. But Lion had been before. With that same frat brother, his cousin, his nephew (who's around our age), and his girlfriend Rudy. He told me that before, but I had forgotten that point.


While we were out, he was texting her. After telling her where we were, she responded saying that she hoped he had a stack of money with him. I laughed at that because it did not fit my perception of her or their relationship. I cannot imagine her actually being okay with him giving lots of money to strippers, getting a lap dance, or any other behavior that would require him to spend a "stack" of money. But I guess she's more okay with things than I thought. Either that or she's full of it and trying to be supportive instead of saying what she really meant. But my perception is altered enough.


Lion and Rudy are one couple that I've never invested heavily in. Part of that is because they live so far away and the last time I saw them together was damn near two years ago. And also, I feel like they probably have an expiration date. What can I say, dreaming about their wedding when it probably won't happen doesn't work for me.


But with my changing perceptions, I'm hoping there's room in there to invest more in them. Next month will be a good chance for me to observe them and decide if I want to become emotionally involved with them as a couple.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Tip Top Tuesday: Being Unapologetically You

***My girl Top is unique and one-of-a-kind. This makes the story of her love life especially interesting. Just when you think you've got her figured, she makes an unexpected move. She's my career-minded friend who's always focused on self-improvement. She's also super-independent yet a closet nurturer. Read and learn how to be fabulous.***
Read Tip Top Tuesday posts.


Last week, I told two stories about Top that revolve around her world as a single girl. The first was a story about her mother looking forward to grandchildren, but not a son-in-law. The second was about another step towards closure with her Ex.


I wanted to write that blog post, but I did worry about if it would be too personal. But Top said she read the post, liked the post, and was glad I wrote it. She said she liked that for once, I wasn't sugar coating things. I had a good reason for sugar coating things, but she was right.


Worrying about people who may come across this blog and easily figure out who these people are that I write about could get folks in trouble. I do leave stuff out of the blog when it's requested, but I guess I don't have to work so hard to sugar coat things when it's not requested. I just don't want to cross that line of telling something to the whole world that was told to me as a friend. I already feel like the world's biggest gossip. But turning my friends' love lives into a soap opera-y blog has been fun for me, and fun for some of them as well.


Now, moving on to what I'll discuss about Top for this week. I started by Googling "single and fabulous", since that's how I would describe Top. She's one of my only friends who says she's okay being single, and that doesn't have an implied "but". But, that search didn't yield the type of results I was hoping for. I did find some interesting blogs to read. But I tried again with "single and happy". After sorting through the links that suggested tips on how to be single and happy, I found three posts that simply talk about it as a normal state of being. Top isn't really needing the self-help stuff to teach her how to be single and happy. She's got that part down.


Here are the three links:
Single and Happy: It's the Norm, Not the Exception

Single And Happy: It's The Freemales

Single And Happy


All three articles talk about how it's normal, and even, gasp, a good thing to be single and be happy. It's certainly preferable over settling for someone who isn't the right person and contributing to the high divorce rate. Top would rather be single if she can't be with the kind of man who works with who she is as a person without constantly projecting onto her. I think even if she did find that man, it would take a lot to get her to decide giving up her singlehood was worth it. This man would need to put in a lot of time, convincing her over time, that he was worth it.


There are definitely more articles about this that fit who Top is outside of America. I guess that works seeing as how she intends to move out of the country possibly for her next big move. I don't know when it's going to happen, but Top is the kind of woman who can make something like that happen. I am excited for the possibility that she'll branch out even farther. I'll be living vicariously through her, going where she wants, and doing what she wants. And most of all, making no apologies for putting herself first.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Gloria's Romantic Monday: A Trip Out Of Town

***Gloria is a friend of mine I know from church. She is a single mother. She has a boyfriend, Gregory, who we all love and her son's father, Rufus, who we all hate. She is fun-loving and hilarious. Gloria is the type of friend who'd be there for you at a party, when things get tough, or even if you need help applying for school.***
Read Romantic Monday posts.


Last week, I talked about my hope that Gloria and Gregory would have found time to spend together. But that was not to be. I forgot that Gloria was leaving town this past week. She headed to Austin, Texas on Tuesday to spend time with one of her closest friends that she grew up with. This woman lives down there with her husband and two children.


I figured that type of trip was good for Gloria because she is headed towards a life with a husband and 2+ children, so seeing it up close through the lens of one of her closest friends probably did more for her than talking about it ad nauseum with any of her friends who still live in Chicago.


Also, Gloria has been considering moving to warmer climates and Texas is at the top of the list. That terrifies me because of what they're doing to their education budget, but I guess they have good and bad schools like everyone else. And aside from education, Texas does have things to offer, especially if you love to eat or love sports (and cultural diversity).


Gloria and I were texting back and forth on Saturday night. She was ready to come home because she missed her son terribly. Also, Austin didn't seem to be providing the good time she'd hoped it would. Travelling in your mid-20s is a new world. It's not like college travelling where all you need is some food, good company, and a couple of clubs to declare the trip and success that needs to be repeated. When you're in your mid-20s, what you're leaving behind stands out and is weighed constantly against what the new place has to offer. And the whack clubs in Austin don't match up to spending time at home with her son, reading the Cat in the Hat and the Cat in the Hat Returns.


I wish Gregory could have gone with her down there. I think it would've been good for him and her to spend time in a place that could theoretically become their home. I don't know that Austin was on the list of places Gloria felt she could move to in Texas, but I figure it probably was on the list since one of her closest friends lives there. I just always think of Dallas and Houston (and maybe Fort Worth) when people say Texas.


It feels like the trip down there was an audition of sorts for Gloria. Once she's back on Chicago soil, with her son in her arms, feeling Chicago's cold ass version of Spring, I'll be interested to see what her opinion is of moving to Texas and whether it's gotten stronger or weaker. I imagine with her son and Gregory there with her, she'd have a higher opinion of the place. We'll see.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Sonny's Sunday: Engaged, But Also Real People With Real Feelings

***Sonny is an old friend of mine. We went to elementary, middle, and high school together. He's also my friend who's doing the super-adult thing. He and his new fiancee Cher just bought a house. They're working on planning a life together. Even with all that stability, their love life is still interesting.***


Last week, I wrote a post about Sonny and Cher's upcoming wedding. I mentioned that the details can't really be sorted until they make their cruise reservations in June. That led to me to link to a website that helps plan destination weddings. It was a cute and interesting website, and it made me excited to think about Sonny and Cher's upcoming wedding.


Their wedding is still more than a year away, which made me think of yesterday's post for Noni's Stargazing Saturday, in which I talked about long ass engagements. I don't think that really applies to Sonny and Cher though, because they have both a ring and a tentative date set.


There's really nothing to update in terms of their relationship or progress as a couple that I know of. So I'll be linking to something from the Internet. I think I'm going to Google the term "surviving being engaged" to see where that leads me.


I found an amazing new blog to read called Wedding Bee. The post I read is called "On Surviving "The Happiest" Time Of Your Life. You can read it and check out the rest of her website here. This takes an interesting view of engagement. It takes off the rose colored sunglasses to remind the world that life doesn't stop because you're engaged.


Sure, you're living out one of the major life goals of most human beings, but it doesn't make you immediately and permanently impervious to things like sadness, stress, and arguments. I don't think Sonny and Cher argue all the time, but they do argument. I think they do a good job of not feeling like their relationship is going to fall apart every time they do argue. And they don't seem to be letting their wedding planning interfere with being on top of the other details of their life. This article is really a good read for any couple that's engaged but also have full lives outside of wedding planning.


I never thought I'd suggest more people should be like Sonny and Cher (they are their own unique people), but in this respect, hop on the not-solely-living-to-plan-your wedding bandwagon. Embrace the other parts of life, and don't freak out if you and your beloved fiance(e) have an argument. Be happy, but don't feel even worse if that's not your permanent engaged state.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Noni's Stargazing Saturday: Deciding To Get Married Without Actually Getting Married

***Noni is one of my really good friends from college. We were even roommates for a year and some change. But now she's back in school back home where she's from. And she's starting a family with a baby boy and working on herself and her relationship at the same time. Things won't always be easy, but they're usually always interesting.***
Read Stargazing Saturday posts.


Last week, I linked to an article from Your Tango that talked about making time as a couple when you have a child in the house. I thought that would be a good article for anyone in Noni's and Eric's situation.


I was hoping to have more to say about Noni's actual love life this weekend, but alas, it's not to be. She's still super busy and all I know is that a lot has happened, but things are fine. She's still with Eric and they're still raising their son together and she's still in school. At least that what I take "things are fine" to mean. So I'm trolling the internet, looking for something interesting to link to related to Noni's love life as it currently (I think) stands. I Googled the terms "engaged forever" and "engaged too long". Noni and Eric have been engaged forever it seems. Way before she got pregnant, if memory serves me correctly.


I found an interesting forum topic on DrPhil.com. You can read it here. It doesn't really apply to Noni and Eric because as far as I know, she's not begging him to get married and he's not making up all kinds of excuses to avoid it. On to the next.

The next post comes from DearCupid.org. You can read it here. This one was interesting. The woman's sister had been engaged for fourteen years! To each his/her own, I suppose. But the advice given was varied and mostly based on peoples' own experiences. Why don't people give actual advice instead of "this is what I would do if you were me"? Not even "if I were you". Sigh.

The third and final link is from BlackandMarriedWithKids.com. That sounds exactly like Noni and Eric, so I was hoping this would really apply to them. You can read the post here. The article is titled How Long Is Too Long To Be Engaged. The suggestion offered in this one is a year to have both the ring and the date set.


I find this third article the most interesting (and fitting for Noni and Eric) because it's gets right down to the nitty gritty. It sets a specific time for how things should be, but allows for exceptions. Noni has a reasonable exception to the rule: some birth certificate issues. It can keep you from hopping on a plane out of the country, and apparently can keep you from getting married. I'm not sure if Eric ever gave her a ring, but apparently, they're still good if there's no ring involved. It's more like they've just decided they will get married, but they aren't yet officially engaged. I guess.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Michelle's T.G.I.Fridays: Apologies And Hope For The Future

***Michelle is a girl that grew up next door to me and we attended the same church. Now she's in her early 20s and living the single life. She goes on these dates that are either lovely or horrific. She's slightly terrified at the thought of committing to someone any time soon. And of course, she has the occasional man who really catches her eye and her heart.***
Read T.G.I.Fridays posts.


Last week, I wrote about this crazy story that happened to Michelle last semester when she accidentally ended up with a boyfriend. It was pretty funny to me, and I hope that funniness was conveyed through the blog post.


I was hoping that this week, I could just link to some post for a single girl deciding whether or not she wants to put herself in the market for a serious relationship. That meant nothing dramatic would be happening in Michelle's love life this week. Well, I won't be linking to anything because something did happen.


Two somethings happened actually. In a way, I'm glad they happened because they provided Michelle with a chance to focus on some bad things that happened and take the first step towards truly getting past it instead of just getting over it.


The first thing happened with Darren. I wrote a post about how terribly things ended with him and Michelle, which you can read here. Darren's relationship ended as predicted. That's what happens when you jump into a situation simply for the sake of being able to say you have a girlfriend. Darren called (or maybe texted, whatever) Michelle to inform her that his relationship was over.


He also apologized for what happened between the two of them back in December. I'm so glad he apologized, it took guts to do that. And even though they were good friends before all this went down, I'm glad that jerk got the karma that was coming to him. Maybe Darren and Michelle can be friends again after this, I don't know. I guess time will tell.


The second thing that happened was eerily similar to the first. Terrence reached out to Michelle just two days after Darren did. You can read about the demise of Terrence and Michelle here. It was even worse that what happened with Darren because Michelle had real love for Terrence. I think that made her feel even better when he reached out to her to apologize for what happened. I think he is still with his girlfried. Michelle didn't ask, and he didn't volunteer any info about the chick.


If he's still with her, maybe they'll work out. I'm hoping they don't. I guess that sounds mean, but whatever. If Michelle can't have him, but still kind of wants him, I don't want anyone else to have him. And they still have time to break up. If Terrence follows Darren's schedule, things should be falling apart between him and his "girlfriend" in about a week.


Michelle still has hope that things could possibly work out between her and Terrence eventually. I don't know how long she'll wait for eventually, but I'm all for hope. After how well things have turned out between Easy and me, I can only have hope that two people who truly love each other can work through anything.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Big Bad Thursday: Growing Up And Growing Together

***Big Bad Thursday is all about Bad. He's one of my best friends and was a charming, if commitment-phobic bachelor. He finally realized a woman was worth giving up complete and total bachelor-hood. So now Bad and Jordan are in love and working towards building a life together. They live in a wonderful apartment in Chicago and they are quite a fabulous couple.***
Read Big Bad Thursday posts


I mentioned in a post on my main blog that Bad and Jordan came to this gig of Easy's last weekend. Jordan and my mom really hit it off, which makes me happy. I feel that it's important to the long-term prospects for my friendships with men that their women be integrated into the family as well. I really like Jordan because she's so sweet and fun, but if she likes me and my family and enjoys spending time with her, we may avoid that point in life where a couple pares down their friends to only their mutual friends. I don't know if Bad would ever do it, but embracing Jordan will help me make that cut just in case.


It's just something to think about as you get older. I love all my friends and would love for the folks I write about in this blog to still be my closest friends in a decade. Whether or not that's possible cannot be known. But that is the inspiration for today's hunt for a link. Bad and Jordan seem to be doing well blending their lives but still maintaining their own personalities.


A google search for "mixing friends in a relationship" yielded several things about business, but then I saw this cute website with stuff for couples called Q and A section for Couple Issues to see if anything stuck out. Something did. It was a question about housewarming parties.


Here is the question. The question was how late was too late to have a housewarming party. The answer was "no, six months isn't too late. But two years is."


Bad and Jordan have been living together since August, so they're right around 6 months now. They are still furnishing and decorating their apartment. And I'm pretty sure they are planning on moving somewhere else when Bad's lease is up in June. So maybe they shouldn't have a housewarming in this place if they'll be moving so soon and theoretically having a housewarming in that new place. I already have an idea in my head for a great gift, so I can't wait til they do this.


I just had a thought, what if they're waiting until the house they'll live in as a married couple? I hope they don't do that because I imagine they'll be homeowners before they're married, at least from the way Bad discusses real estate. Either way, the good news is they have a whole range (according to etiquette) about when they could have a housewarming.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Camille's Wishful Wednesday: Finding Mr. Right

***Camille is a friend of mine I know from church. She is classified on another blog I read as a "hopeless romantic", and I think that describes her pretty well. I also think she's incredibly well-balanced and able to work on multiple parts of herself at once. She is a law student, a Sunday school teacher, and an all-around good person. She has some pretty concrete ideas about men and the type of man she'd like to end up with. But she's doing the in-my-20s-dating-follies thing as well.***


Last week, I talked about two single guys at Camille's school who've been brought to her attention for one reason or another. She's expressed no genuine interest in either guy, but intends to keep her eyes on them for future prospects, once the harrowing first year of law school is past.'


I have no new updates for this week, which is kind of a relief. I want Camille to have a break from all these frogs so she can be in the right mindset should her prince happen along. That thought is influencing my webcrawl for a link for this week. I'm Googling "Waiting for the one".


Lots of things popped up. Super-Christian sites, music sites, even a store that sold... actually I'm not sure. So I gave up and Googled "finding mr. right." That was much more focused on my topic. The link for today comes from TopDatingTips.com. I liked this post because it wasn't directed at divorced women, it wasn't trying to get me to buy something, and it used lots of big words. You can find the post here.


How does this apply to Camille? Well, she'd like to have a man in her life who was perfect for her. He would treat her well and keep her interest. And he would give her the wedding and marriage of her dreams. It's safe to say she's looking for Mr. Right.


Camille definitely has her list of attributes her perfect man will have. This article points out that he will have a list too and would you measure up any better to his list than he does to yours? It encourages women to take a real look at how they're going about finding Mr. Right and by what criteria. I think this could be useful for any single woman still in search of her happily ever after.

Lion's Life Wednesday: Getting Long Distance Right

***Lion is my best friend from college. He's a very focused young man working on getting his MD. This focus makes having a love life a very difficult undertaking. But he's making it happen somehow.***


Last week, I talked about looking forward to next month when Lion and I take a trip down to Florida. Specifically, I discussed being interested in seeing his interactions with his girlfriend Rudy as compared to the last time I saw the two of them together. I'm excited to get a front row view of their relationship as it stands today (err, next month rather).


This week, I have nothing new to report. So, I'm trolling the internet to see what advice is out there for long-distance couples. If it talks about not having long-term commitment or plans, that would be even better.


Turns out Google will give you a ton of links about how to manage your long-distance date, relationship, romance, even marriage. But I clicked on something that looked useful but also possibly light-hearted. Plus, I love lists. I found Long Distance Dating: 10 Tips For A Good Relationship. It's on the website http://www.essortment.com/, which calls itself "your source for knowledge". Lord only knows what else is floating around on that website.


But I check it out nonetheless. I'm a sucker for catchy titles, what can I say? As I read the article, it had a pretty interesting introduction, although the ideal couple they describe doesn't sound anything like Lion and Rudy. Soul mates? Lion doesn't even believe in soul mates, but I kept reading because I was dying to see what these 10 tips were. So without further delay, here are the 10 tips and whether or not Lion and Rudy follow them.


Tip #1: Make a game plan Um... I guess they have a plan. They know they want to be together short term. They know they probably will not be together long term, as she wants kids and he doesn't. I think they allow room for the relationship to change and grow. Otherwise, they wouldn't have declared to each other their love. So they've got this one.

Tip #2: Communication is key This part sounds very unlike Lion. They suggest you tell the person how much you love them and miss them every time you speak to ward off insecurity. Based on their busy schedules, I just don't see Lion squeezing I love you into every text message. Maybe he does, but I doubt it.


Tip #3: Be there for the person in good times and bad times Seeing as how Lion is in medical school and always super busy, I imagine he could be there more for Rudy at times. But they seem to have a pretty good support system going. They talk about things once they're talking. But if either one calls the other one at some odd hour of the day to discuss an emergency, they might have to wait a bit for a callback.


Tip #4: Make the commitment I'm pretty sure this is what they've done. Lion isn't seeing anybody else. He's not even doing much in the way of flirting with anybody else. That sounds like commitment to me.


Tip #5: Send old-fashioned letters and packages through the mail I know he's definitely done this once or twice, but I'm not sure if it's a habit or not. They don't really do gifts like a typical couple. They didn't exchange anything for Valentine's Day this year. And for Christmas, Lion bought Rudy tires for her car. Can't (shouldn't) send those in the mail.


Tip #6: Uncork the bottle They definitely don't talk about some major issues in the relationship. I know Lion avoids certain topics because of fear of how Rudy will respond. Also, since he feels they have an expiration date, he doesn't see the need for constant conflict resolution for things that are really long-term problems anyway.
Tip #7: Use technology to your advantage This is something they definitely do. Without text messaging, they wouldn't talk nearly as often because of their horribly schedules.


Tip #8: Common interests give you topics to discuss The only thing I know they have in common is that her sorority is the sister to his fraternity. They probably have more, but that's all I know.


Tip #9: Make the other person remember how great you are I honestly don't know. But this tip is about balancing the good in your life with the bad. Making sure you share both is important, but I'm not at all sure how Lion and Rudy do on this balance. Seriously, I can't even conjecture a guess.


Tip #10: Plan visits Oh yeah. Considering how expensive it is to fly from St. Louis to Tallahassee, I think they see each other pretty regularity. And like I said, we're headed down there next month. I do wonder when is the next time she's coming up to the Midwest though. Aside from visiting, they also vacation together on breaks/holidays.


 
They have at least 7 out of 10, and some of them I truly didn't know the answer. They didn't do too shabby on the tip list. They could do better, but they've got a lot of the building blocks needed to maintain a strong long-distance relationship.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Tip Top Tuesday: More Stories About A Single Girl

***My girl Top is unique and one-of-a-kind. This makes the story of her love life especially interesting. Just when you think you've got her figured, she makes an unexpected move. She's my career-minded friend who's always focused on self-improvement. She's also super-independent yet a closet nurturer. Read and learn how to be fabulous.***


This post is about an interesting convo Top and I had last week, but it wasn't going to fit into what was already a long ass post. It was about her future children. Yes, Top wants to be a mother. Not anytime soon mind you. She doesn't even have "the itch". But she does want someday to have a child.
 
 
And she doesn't feel the need to be married to do that. She doesn't think she'll ever be married. Calm down all you traditionalists out there who think women like Top are destroying the fabric of families as they should be. Get over your damn selves! She's not a future statistic or a victim of not thinking things through. She's planning on a life that fits who she is as a person and what she wants. If more people tried that, the divorce rate would be lower. I'm just saying...


Her mother has expressed interest in her future grandchild, but also acceptance that Top may never marry. After you have a mother's approval, what else does one need? Certainly not the approval of some guy who can't even take a hint that he missed his chance at having something real with you.


On another note, she also had an interesting convo with her ex, but again, too much to post last week, so here's what happened there. He called and they talked. He apologized... again... for everything that went down between the two of them. You know you're fucking up when you're still apologizing over a year and a half later.


But their talk did serve a good purpose. It gave Top a better feeling about the whole situation. She spoke her mind without a filter and got some peace from it. He's not doing so well, but who cares about his ass? He screwed up his chance for sympathy a long time ago. I'm just glad Top is on the road to picking up all the pieces of herself. I think of it as breadcrumbs you leave on the ground while in a relationship.  When you go back and pick them up, eventually you find the person you were before the tumult of said relationship. Being able to define yourself without including him is a great thing.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Gloria's Romantic Monday: A Small Bump In The Long Road Ahead

***Gloria is a friend of mine I know from church. She is a single mother. She has a boyfriend, Gregory, who we all love and her son's father, Rufus, who we all hate. She is fun-loving and hilarious. Gloria is the type of friend who'd be there for you at a party, when things get tough, or even if you need help applying for school.***


Last week, I talked about a conversation Gloria and I had about knowing if he's "The One". It was an interesting conversation and one I'm sure both us of were glad to have. I certainly don't have anyone else in my life (besides Lion's other best friend Rev) who's even in a comparable relationship right now. I'm not sure if Gloria does either. I like to think our discussions about are menfolk are as helpful to her as they are to me.


One of the things we discussed for the past post and this past week were the time issues she and Gregory had. I thinking knowing how badly things can turn out (like with Rufus) makes her appreciate Gregory all the more. But it's hard to show that appreciation when you're never around a person. He's got a lot on his plate right now, and I'm pretty sure that Gregory isn't actually neglecting Gloria.  Evey time I'm over her house, she's texting him back and forth or on the phone with him.


That's not the same as actually spending face to face time with a person. In the long-term grand scheme of things, it won't be like this forever. They are transitioning to making decisions for the two of them. But the decisions made individually are still taking their effect. I just hope it's only for a short time that Gloria continues to wish they had more time together.


So for now, they're making plans for the future and Gloria is threatening to move to Alaska. I told her there is nothing for her there except hairy men who are avid outdoorsmen. How's that for a stereotype that doesn't actually sound that bad? But I can't see Gloria with an avid outdoorsman. Plus, she loves Gregory too much to start over (her words, not mine).


I hope that next week, they will have spent some good quality time together. I doubt his schedule will have improved in seven days, but I just enjoy quick resolutions to problems.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Sonny's Sunday: Destination Wedding, Anyone?

***Sonny is an old friend of mine. We went to elementary, middle, and high school together. He's also my friend who's doing the super-adult thing. He and his new fiancee Cher just bought a house. They're working on planning a life together. Even with all that stability, their love life is still interesting.***


As far as I know, there's nothing new to report about Sonny and Cher from the last week. Just more of the same. Sonny is preparing for the GRE and searching for a job. Cher is working and waiting to plan the details of their wedding.


I began perusing wedding planning sites looking for something interesting to link to for this week's post. Here is what I found. It's a website called TheWeddingExperience.com. It's all about destination weddings. Since Sonny and Cher intend on getting married on a cruise ship, they fall under the destination wedding umbrella.


It's a website dedicated to helping you plan your destination wedding. They have partnerships with a number of cruise lines. Unfortunately, they don't partner with the line Sonny and Cher plan to use, but they did have a lot of interesting information about all the different planning tools one might need to make a destination wedding happened. What do I mean? Think sand-on-a-beach themed place cards for the reception.


I had a lot of fun poking around the website to see what they have to offer. I hope Cher is looking around for all the information she can gather about the type of wedding they want to have so when it's time to settle on details, she'll already have an idea of what she wants and what's possible. For instance, having doves released from your wedding aboard a cruise ship isn't the best idea.


If you're getting married on a boat, check out all the option. I love the holiday themed stuff. I can't imagine getting married on New Year's Eve on a cruise ship, but there must be a market for it. Some of the stuff (specifically those blue lanterns) were simply lovely, I wonder if I could get them at my plain old on-dry-land wedding I intend to have one day. They're the exact colors I've always imagined I'd have at my wedding.


Is it weird that the thing I want to know most about Sonny and Cher's upcoming nuptials is their colors? The wedding color palette is always important. If you check out the website have fun exploring. If not, hopefully I can have real stuff to report next week.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Noni's Stargazing Saturday: Keeping The Romance Alive, Theoretically

***Noni is one of my really good friends from college. We were even roommates for a year and some change. But she's done with school (for now). She's starting a family with a baby boy and working on herself and her relationship at the same time. Things won't always be easy, but they're usually always interesting.***


I have been trying my hardest to track down Noni. All I can get are a couple of texts here and there so I know she's either alive and well or being held captive by someone who's able to master her text tone. But between family, work, and school, she's got a lot on her plate right now, I so I don't fault her.


I'm heading to Your Tango right now to find something to link to in reference to a young engaged couple raising a child. Of course, I could post something about a person addicted to emotional extremes. Let's just see what catches my attention on the site.


I found an article that is exactly the type of article I was looking for (and couldn't find) on The Frisky last week. This article is called How To Keep The Romance Alive As A Parent. This type of article is perfect for Eric and Noni because so much of their lives revolve around their kid and working to take care of the kid. They don't spend a lot of time on just the two of them.


This article is written by a woman dealing with a six year old. Noni's and Eric's son is only one, but I think it paints an interesting picture of what they have to look forward to. I imagine their son will be the type who asks a million and one questions, including "what are you doing in there?" But the article does provide a good way of looking at things.


For instance, it's important to note that setting aside time for sex around your child's schedule does take some of the spontaneity out of it, but it's the perfect time to really focus in and pay attention to your partner. They get your undivided focus in a way that they might not if you had all day to lavish them with attention. This article says you should appreciate that set aside time together because it's more focused.


Also, it says to make the most of the little moments you can snatch throughout the day. Noni and Eric ride to and from work together every day. They do have some time together before they pick their son up from day care. They could use that time for adult conversation that's focused just on the two of them and save the discussions of whether or not they need to pick up diapers for after they pick up their son.


All in all, I like this article. I hope it would be useful to a couple getting adjusted to life with a child versus life without a child. Hopefully, next week, I'll have something to report about Noni's actual love life.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Michelle's T.G.I.Fridays: Another Crazy Single Girl Story

***Michelle is a girl that grew up next door to me and we attended the same church. Now she's in her early 20s and living the single life. She goes on these dates that are either lovely or horrific. She's slightly terrified at the thought of committing to someone any time soon. And of course, she has the occasional man who really catches her eye and her heart.***

Last week, I finally got around to telling what happened between Terrence and Michelle. I'm glad to be past that for a while.


Michelle is still single. I guess I could tell the story I never told from last semester about how she had a boyfriend temporarily. I think I will tell the story. I mentioned this guy waaay back in September. He only got a paragraph in a long post that mentioned a couple of guys. Here is the paragraph.
There was this other guy too, who happened to be the fraternity brother of the first guy. He likes Michelle; she sees him as just a friend. She's been enjoying the attention, but not wanting to encourage it by spending too much time with him.
This guy and Michelle hung out a lot last semester. They got to be pretty good friends. He liked and and she liked him well enough. Let me put it this way, he was the only person around she could bear to spend time with. But he decided he really liked her.


He had a dinner party one night and some of his friends who Michelle doesn't really hang out with were there. At the party, one of those friends called her his girlfriend. She was like, "say what?" The guy explains to Michelle that neither of them are dating anyone else. Michelle thinks, "In this town." Then he explains to Michelle that he likes her and she seems to like him too. Michelle thinks, "but there's just no else else I like more, does that count?" Then he explains to Michelle that it feels right to him and no they haven't discussed it, but he thinks they should go with it. Michelle thinks, "what the hell? no discussion. You're a crazy person."


But Michelle says... nothing. At least not right then. I suppose it's not the best conversation to have with a guy in front of his friends that you really don't know well. I had fun joking that she had a boyfriend for a couple of days. It really was funny. But then she let his ass know that you don't just decide someone is your girlfriend, plus she's talking to other people who don't live in Charleston, plus the two of them will never have a serious relationship. Great story, right? I think so.



Now, for the rest of this post, I'm going to discuss what else has been going on with her.


There isn't much going on. Michelle still feels like the men in her world are next to nonexistent in Charleston and sucky everywhere else. She hasn't even mentioned Darren, Terrence, or Michael. That makes me happy because except for me mentioning them right now, they don't deserve to be mentioned.


So there's nothing really new to report. Perhaps next week, I'll link another article for a single girl who hasn't decided whether or not she wants it to be a long-term condition.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Big Bad Thursday: You Are Committed, But That Doesn't Always Affect Those Around You

***Big Bad Thursday is all about Bad. He's one of my best friends and was a charming, if commitment-phobic bachelor. He finally realized a woman was worth giving up complete and total bachelor-hood. So now Bad and Jordan are in love and working towards building a life together. They live in a wonderful apartment in Chicago and they are quite a fabulous couple.***


Last week, I talked about an article from The Frisky. I didn't have much to say about what was going on in their relationship. Don't get me wrong, I love my drama-free couple. They just don't have constant changes and things in their relationship that would go into a blog. Being in grad school and working full time makes that happen. It's no biggie.


This week I have a story to tell that doesn't involve Bad and Jordan. This story is just about Bad. Which is totally okay since I pride this couple on having facts about each of them singly and not just facts about both of them as a couple.


The story about Bad is the type of story that happens to men when they are in committed relationships. Just because they've decided to be committed doesn't mean the women of the world get that and have agreed to make that commitment successful.


The story started like this, "I forgot what 24 was like." I agreed with him completely cause 24 year olds are... not 26 year olds. You will only get that if you have a very intact memory of the differences between who you were as 24 versus 26. But back to the story.


Bad had to go to this fundraiser party thing for work. He ended up there with two 24 year old women. They were there representing two women who are two of Bad's bosses. Anyways, Bad is charming and good looking and tends to attract more than his fair share of women. Apparently, these two decided they were part of that share.


As lyrics from "One More Drink" played in his mind, he informed the ladies he wasn't available for them to fight over that night. They chose not to listen to him. So while Bad was representing his company at the event, he was also dealing with these two chicks. Bad and I are close enough where he would tell me the whole true story, and I'm glad it ended well since I'm blogging about it.


Here's how it turned out. Even though it was an open bar and Bad took full advantage of it, he still maintained to the women that they didn't have a chance for him. I love when the important men in my life are men that can be counted on. Even though Jordan wasn't with him, she had nothing to worry about.


Bad recounts the event in a way that shows he was flattered by the attention. Even though he and Jordan lead lives that can be separated, he doesn't spend much social time without her. This evening was like a yeah-I-still-got-it moment. A guy (heck a person) needs that every so often. And he got flattered and then went home to the woman he loves.


I hope every story I'll ever tell about him ends that way.

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