There is this movement called Quirky Alone started in San Francisco by a pretty girl my age. She was a panelist at a Commonwealth event that I went to on women writers. The movement is about single independence and power. As interesting as it is, and as empowering as it should be, I just cannot tear myself away from this feeling of wanting to be coupled with someone. Doesn’t everyone want a best friend and romantic partner who is there when you come home from a stressful day at work. Like today. Let me preface that I have worked so fucking hard in the past few weeks. Ok, now that I have that off of my flat chest, let me mention today. I called Daniel this afternoon and had to calm myself down before speaking, I was about to lose it. The tears were ready to break through.
“Are you ok? You haven’t even said anything.” He calmly asked. Daniel’s such a good friend, a phenomenal advisor in all respects.
When I’m really down, I think, there must be something sorely wrong with me. Something awfully horribly wrong. I suspect most people must think this when they’re depressed. So despite this supposedly empowering Quirkly Alone movement, despite the vast number of singletons running around Manhattan, the Marina Safeway or the Black Rock City playa, I have to assume that others are experiencing similar sentiments. What is wrong with me? Do I stink? Am I ugly? Does no one want to be with me? Why must I be repulsed by the guys who actually like me?
I wanted to describe the Quirky Alone men in my life. They are guys I’m dating who—much like me—are still alone, but looking for love. But first I will start out with me.
Catherine seems sweet on the surface, but is moody. At times, this middle-aged lady has a volatile, explosive personality—especially when things do not go her way. Despite the episodes of anger, she surprisingly has a strong following of loyal friends. These are friendships (new and old) that she has cultivated over a lifetime. Mercurial in spirit, she has a complex personality. Sometimes very quiet, sometimes very outgoing. She volleys from extreme to extreme which is probably why she finds herself alone.
In his early forties, Eli believes he deserves the successful reputation he has made for himself. He has a brash personality that matches his success and wealth. A decade earlier, Eli could have easily substituted for a Ralph Lauren model. He leaves behind a life of partying in San Francisco, Chicago, and throughout Europe in exchange for a subdued suburban lifestyle across the Golden Gate Bridge. Although he thinks he is ready to settle down, he probably has no idea what it takes to maintain a long-term relationship.
The first time I met this well-dressed, well-coiffed, buffed, manicured man with a six-pack, I knew what he did not—that he is gay. He hails from a wine background and sniffed and spit, when I simply and greedily gulped. He commented on my “knock-out red patent stilettos” and the one-piece jumpsuit I had on. “Honey, I just love what you’re wearing.” He smiled coquettishly as he pointed at me with his finger. He continued, “You know what I find fascinating about you? You’re a Burner. I just love Burning Man.” I asked him about this year, what he thought about it, where he camped, etc. When he told me he was with the Pink Mammoth—the gayest camp on the playa—I almost ran.
The problem with Nick is that he thinks he is the coolest, hottest, smartest, most interesting man in the world. The problem for me is that I agree. He is the cheapest, most insensitive, self-absorbed man I have ever met which makes me lose respect for myself when I drop everything to answer his phone calls. Another problem with Nick is that no one will ever live up to his first true love who dumped him like any smart woman should. Nick is the master of networking, has a million friends on Facebook, always gets invited to all the cool parties, constantly has something of interest going on…yet seems to have only one true geeky friend.
Matt is that foreigner you love to hate. Too smart for his own good, he hates and is miserable about everything. “Love Fest is dull compared to Love Parade in Berlin.” So go back to your homeland. “I couldn’t stand the people at HBS, all these hoity-toity people who like to stand around and drink wine.” So you should’ve gone to the University of Phoenix. “You Americans, you Americans are so unoriginal.” So why did you come to the United States?” He had a child by his girlfriend but left New York because he couldn’t stand it there. He likes San Francisco much better. RED FLAG: Fathers who leave their children.
Ben can’t get the love of his life out of his head. She dumped him to marry a rich man who could support her. No prenup, instead, a written contract stating that she could have all his money. Ben was so devastated, he spent the next couple years amassing enough money to buy a loft south of market. He had a catered, blowout party with free-flowing champagne. Too bad he couldn’t show it off to the one person who mattered. The only reason he connected with me is because I look like her twin.
What Bobby lacks in physical appearance, he makes up for in comedic prowess. To my dismay and the dismay of others, he overdoes it. It’s funny the first time, then gets old. Marginal returns, my friend. Maybe that’s why Bobby can never get past the friend stage; he’s so unsexy. But nice, very nice. Which is why he is still on my dating list.
I have more stories and more quirky alone men, but ready to go home and cry myself to sleep now. I’ve had a very sad day. Very sad.