Saturday, August 25, 2007

As I've written before, I am reentering the dating scene. Classify this under the "what the fuck was I thinking?" file of my life.

About a month ago, I was at a party with some girlfriends. I arrived at the party tipsy because of the 2 16 oz raspberry peach frozen margaritas I had with dinner. This party was dark and PACKED. Wall to wall people grinding and bumping, bumping and grinding, 2 stepping the night away. After a few more drinks at the party, of course my bladder was doing its own 2 step, and before it started walking it out right of my body, I shimmied my ass through the crowd and navigated my way to the bathroom. How do you spell relief? A clean bathroom with no line but I digress (I've been watching Golden Girls reruns lately...hahahaha). On my way back to the bar where I knew I would find my intoxicated friends, I literally bump into a Tshirt that reads "I Love Black Women" designed just like the I Heart NY Tshirts. As I apologize, I also offer up "Oooh, nice Tshirt." That my friends, was mistake number 1. I offered up this compliment without even checking dude out ( I can definitely blame this on the alcohol in my system because if I were sober I would have thought it and not said it...hahahaha) and when I looked up into his face he looked like TPAIN (minus the gold locs). This guy could be T-Pain's body double and I couldn't help but giggle when the thought crossed my mind (again blame the alcohol). So my compliment accompanied by my giggle must have given dude the green light to make his move. He offers to, you guessed right, buy me a drink, At which point I proceed to crack up. He asked me what was so funny. I respond that I am actually on my way to the bar. We finally arrive at the bar after a few minutes of contorting our bodies so not to disturb people's groove on the dance floor. We arrive at the bar and I just order a bottled water. He asks me "Are you sure that's all you want?" I respond "Yeah" through my fit of uncontrollable giggles. As we wait for the bartender to bring our drinks of course the interview begins: "What's your name? Where are you from?", etc., etc. Shortly thereafter the bartender comes back and before I can escape with a "thanks" and a wave, he asks the inevitable "why don't you give me your number so I can take you out?" Awwww snap! What the hell am I gonna do?? Now in the very brief conversation over the loud music, he seemed to be a pretty cool guy. Independent of the T-PAIN images running in my head like a BET marathon, he made me laugh in that short time, which is definitely a plus for anyone I'm dating. So do I give into to my shallow side and say hell no or do I rise above his looks and agree to his request?

Fast forward a couple of weeks, and I have actually spoken to dude a few times. On the phone, he's polite, funny, and easy to talk to. I finally agree to meet him at a restaurant down in the Village for dinner and drinks. I arrive 20 minutes late but he's patiently waiting at the bar. As soon as I spot him, that synthesized music starts playing in my head. "shawty snap/ yeah" I think he read my smile as my excitement to see him. It actually was to keep me from laughing again. I hop on the bar stool next to him and he asks if I want to remain at the bar or grab a table. "woooooo/snap yo fingers, do the step, you can do it all by yourself". Ummm I think the bar is fine is my response. At that point there was no way I could sit across from him at a table with the intro playing in my head already. "baby girl/what's your name?/let me talk to you/let me buy you a drank".

After we order a couple of appetizers and drinks (yes, call me shawty, because I let him buy me a drank! ooooo weeee ooooo), the conversation turns to dating and relationships. "I'm Tpain/you know me/Konvict music/nappy boy oooooh wee". Can you believe the faux Tpain is a playa?? He proceeds to tell me about at least 4 women he is currently dating. I almost choked on my drink. I wonder if these women think he is really Tpain or do they think he is related to the synthesized "Rappa Ternt Sanga". He seemed to be proud of the fact that he hasn't been in a serious relationship in over 8 years, and was content to "just live, ma". Granted I'm not looking for a new love, baby but damn he seemed to be building a harem like he's an 80 year old white man who walks around in a smoking jacket. I appreciate his honesty but honestly? He is like George Bush seeking a third term in office - IT AINT GONNA HAPPEN!!!!! I'm didn't return a manchild to upgrade it for the TPAIN model (or would that be a downgrade? the jury is still out on that one). "I got money in the bank/shawty what you think bout that?/ find me in the grey Cadillac" More giggles. Eventually when he was tired of talking about himself and his "situations", he inquired about my previous relationship. Oh boy, here we go. Now I could either sum it up in a nice neat package and keep the conversation going, or I could give him War & Peace, the unabridged version of the manchild chronicles. What's a girl to do???

So after about 30 minutes of stunned silence, (SURPRISE! SURPRISE!) he was ready to leave. Sure, I could have spared him some of the details from the manchild chronicles, but I needed to insure that I was no longer a candidate for his harem nor was I looking to be the inspiration for T-Pain's next hit: "I'm sprung off the coat check girl who used to be a bartender but dreams of being a stripper". He offers me a ride home as we exit the restaurant. I politely say no thanks for 2 reasons. One: TPAIN does NOT need to know where I live since he will never be invited over and Two: "Whats the chance of you rolling with me?/ back to the crib/show you how I live/ let's get drunk /forget what we did..." Hell no, I know the lyrics to your song, mannn. I know a setup when I see one. "We in the bed like ooooh oooh ooh" Ugh, get me outta here. The dating gods must have been shining on me, because just as I stepped into the street to hail a yellow taxi, one immediately pulls up and is very willing to go to Harlem. I opened the door, turned around, gave him a finger wave, thanked him for an "interesting" evening and slid into the back seat, all in one fluid motion. "shawty got class/oh behave"

Grateful for the evening to be over and to finally stop giggling, I sunk back into the faux leather seating of my chariot home. Alone with my thoughts, I thought of how far I've come in the past couple of months, and how far of a journey I still have to go. I haven't figured out quite what I want in a relationship (I think) but I know what I don't want, and that, my friends, includes TPAIN or anyone else with manchild tendencies. I asked the driver to turn the radio on and you guessed it,"Snap your fingers/do the step/ you could do it all by yourself" came blaring into the back seat. I laughed all the way home.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Have you ever had a time in your life when you wished that every hour, every minute, every second was documented? A period of time that when you look back on it you never want to forget a thing, not even the color draws you were wearing at that very moment?? A time in your life where cameras followed you wherever you go as if you were one of 7 strangers picked to live on The Real World?

14 people. 10 women. 4 guys. Location: Atlantic City. Time Frame: One weekend. From the moment I boarded that damn bus to Atlantic City and the stinky Middle Eastern man sat next to me (SIDEBAR: no I am not saying he stank because he was Middle Eastern, he stank because...well, because quite frankly I don't think he washed his ass before he set out to gamble in Atlantic City. And funk knows no race, creed, or color. I judged him on the content of his stanky character. Dr. King would be proud. hahahahaha) to the moment I put my key in the door upon my return home, I tried to hold on to every single memory. From the onset, this weekend was special. The beautiful gems I call friends and I were given complimentary rooms at a casino in Atlantic City. Yes, you read that right - complimentary, as in gratis, no dinero, FREEEEEEEEEEEE!!! Call it fate, kismet, divine intervention, whatever, but we befriended a really cool dude who gave us the hook up. And no, the exchange rate was not booty claps for room keys. He thought we were cool and just wanted to hang. I guess that's what happens when you are going through transitions in life. You take chances you would have never dreamed of taking. But I digress. So 3 of his buddies and 9 of mine, all converged in Atlantic City, New Jersey, for a weekend I bet none of us are soon to forget. From the lemondrop shots by the pool to the New Edition vs. Jodeci war to my tipsy paparazzi wave upon leaving the 40/40 club (still don't quite remember that but hey, anything is possible!! LOL) to the near beatdown of the Applebees staff for messing up an order and trying to overcharge us. This weekend was the time of my life. How can I forget when I "drop down low and sweep the floor with it"?? Or when my lil sis did more than a 2 step on the dance floor and actually walked it out?? Or when the birthday girl tried to eat her cupcake with the candle still lit and almost burnt her nose off (mind you, this was before the drinking commenced. LOL)?? Or how about when one of the guys realized the shoes he just purchased weren't his and Aldo's was already closed for the evening?? Or how about when the white man on the sundeck asked me if I was going to be a Jet Beauty of the week after my "photoshoot" in my scandalous bathing suit? I never want to forget any of it. Sigh. Where were the camera crews when I needed them? I tried to document it as best I could. I took over 100 pictures in a 3 day period, which is sooo unlike me. But there were soooo many shots I missed like our group hug in the parking lot when everyone was heading home. But pictures can only capture but so much. What about our conversations, our debates, our catching up on each others lives, our getting to know these dudes, and chillin' with them like we've known them forever? What about our reactions when we first saw our rooms (One word: AMAZING!!!! no wait, change that to CELEBRITOUS. I told you I'm going to get that word in the dictionary!! LOL)??? That is something my Canon couldn't capture and I couldn't be everywhere at all times. Celebrities complain about the paparazzi and being stalked and hounded every minute of their lives. I can imagine that can be annoying as hell but just once, just one time I wouldn't have mind being followed by a camera crew and paparazzi because at least then there would be documentation of our celebritous weekend.

Over the past week, I've spoken to various friends about our weekend, and we each giggle over the stories and the moments. We all end the conversation saying "This was fun" and "When's the next weekend?" In the back of my mind I wonder if we will be able to have another weekend like this. When we gathered in Atlantic City, we all left behind responsibilities like jobs, husbands/wives/boyfriends/girlfriends, kids, books to write (wait that's mine and no, I didn't get any writing in but I did manage to haul my drunk ass to the gym Saturday morning. LOL). Life gets in the way of just letting go and having fun. No one told me about this part of adulthood or maybe they did and I was too stubborn to listen. I would have kept better track of these memories.

Ever watch the finale of any Real World and you see the cast crying, boo hooing about leaving? I can finally relate after experiencing this weekend. Its not about not keeping in touch. Because with effort you will email, call, or text, even hang out occasionally. But there won't be another time like this when you can actually leave the real world behind and step into this moment of surreal reality. So until the next celebritous adventure, I will share a laugh with a friend, smile while looking through my pictures, and scout camera crews who would be willing to tag along on the next adventure for FREEEEEEEEEEEE! LOL