Over the past decade or so, I have dated my fair share of *ssholes plus a couple of decent ones thrown into the mix for a little variety. These men (for lack of a better word) have called off dates via text message as I am walking into the restaurant they chose…then do it again the week after; they have left after twenty-minutes of nonstop chatter about themselves (and you know it is bad if I can’t get a word in) because they just “didn’t feel a connection” (maybe douche faces read minds and heard me making grocery lists in my head); they have miraculously found a number I never gave them and called every thirty minutes for a week. To these men, I say: “Job well done!” You, gentlemen, have prepared me for the world of dating in New York City.
Okay, not everyone sucks that much, but sorting through vast fields of weeds is a difficult task. It takes about five minutes to discern tell-tale sleeze traits and run…finding someone semi-decent, however, is an entirely different matter. Luckily, I dated one such fellow for 2 1/2 years–long enough to learn I am a damn trophy and should be treated as such. Reminding me of this fact throughout the day benefits everyone in the vicinity. Our time together was substantial, but not so lengthy that I grew entirely dependent on him. At the ripe old age of thirty, my (now) ex threw me back into the city alone (I like to think he was picturing the last 8 seconds of the opening credits for The Mary Tyler Moore Show: “You’re gonna make it after all….(hat soars through the air).” Actually, I would bet money on that assumption.
Thanks to previously mentioned ex and our shared love for Nick at Night, I was able to recognize a pattern of undesirable behavior with my next relationship and end things rather quickly…temper tantrums are not attractive on little children and are revolting on grown men in their forties. However, I still appreciate his childish behavior because I learned:
MATURITY AND AGE DON’T ALWAYS GO HAND-IN-HAND.
So, what does that mean for Kaitlin? It was time to try dating men born after the 1970’s again. For the first time in 3 1/2 years, I sought out men only slightly older than me…well, I don’t really seek them, but I allowed them to approach and was open to the idea that there may be some sort of mystical species of men in their early to mid thirties with the same traits once believed to exist soley in divorced 40-somethings. Who could have imagined this insane theory proved to be true…they are few in number but it gives a girl hope for future generations (the magical thought of bro-culture dwindling until it is merely urban legend gives me goosebumps).
So, once again, I must express my gratitude to all the men from my past: the short subway groper and his rub/grind pal who sandwiched me on a particularly crowded C train on the West Side, the date that stole money from my purse while I was in the bathroom, the New York Times photojournalist who continued to mispell my name two months into the relationship, the tall one I loved, the one close to my age who makes me laugh so hard I throw out my back and gained my trust in record time.