Tag Archives: Women

Love, Part 1 of 5: Dating Dunzo: “The Shimmy Out”

7 Feb

I’m going to come right out and say it: Dating blows. If you’re my friend on Facebook or follow me on Twitter, my feelings on the subject aren’t news to you. Instead, finally dedicating an entire blog series to the subject seems way overdue.

Before I begin, let me be clear: I am NOT one of those man-hating women complaining about the opposite sex all the time, nor will “man-hating” ever be a topic of discussion. Further, I am not one of those women who thinks a bad dating experience is all a man’s fault. In fact, I think the bad experience is the woman’s fault much of the time. Wait one second though – before all my female readers start sending me hate mail – I have a good reason:

Women are fantastic at knowing if something is going SOMEWHERE very quickly. If she’s wavering and thinks dating this guy is going nowhere, she develops tactics to “shimmy” her way out. Hence, ending the experience becomes this long, arduous, stressed-filled process for absolutely no good reason (You could – *gasp* – just tell him you’d be better off as friends. Not a fun conversation, but at least honest).

Is this “shimmy out” fact about women enlightening? Before I take a deep dive into the topic, I want to provide some context on two things: What goes through a woman’s mind on a date and close-to-perfect dates that happen now and again. Both will help set up the stories of the lame-o “shimmy out.”

Men: Do you know how many times women hear “just be yourself,” “relax,” or “you’ll be fine” before a date with you? Our moms say it. Our friends say it. Hell, when we’re really nervous, we think our stuffed animals are saying it. However, while we are on the date, all of this good advice goes out the window. Instead we spend the time wondering if our hair is OK, if we’re pretty enough, or does our breath smell like the chili margarita we had two hours ago. P.S. – While we are obsessing over our physical appearance and a dude’s body language, we are also freaking out about our behavior. Are we talking/laughing too loud? Not looking at him enough? Looking at him too long? Asking too many questions? Not making him laugh enough? I’m exhausted just talking about it.

Of course, there is an exception to the above stress: A concept called “love at first date.” This concept may sound silly, but I really believe it can happen. These are the dates where everything is perfect. He magically makes us feel comfortable and confident. He looks adorable. We spend three hours discussing favorite Johnny Depp movies and rolling meatballs to each other with our noses (hey, Lady and the Tramp did it). Whatever your idea of “perfect,” you get the point: The date was awesome and subsequent dates are seamless and enjoyable. Before we know it, the girlfriend/boyfriend label magically appears. Sounds nice, doesn’t it? Sigh. If only it happened to all of us.

For the rest of us, dates are usually “fine,” “good,” or “promising.” Subsequent dates are then “better” “something to do,” or “omg I need to call ___ as soon as I get home.” What’s interesting about the latter two buckets is we know dating this person is probably going nowhere, yet we don’t necessarily want to stop seeing the guy. Dating him is “good enough,” but doesn’t make us “happy” or “fulfilled” (two things we consider highly between dates 5-10). So, instead of breaking it off, (like we should) women do one of three things:

1. Drag it out as long as we can (because it’s better than being alone)
2. Slowly phase him out
3. Conduct the lame-o “shimmy out”

I’ll get into #’s 1 and 2 in different blog posts, but today I want to focus on the “shimmy out.” It’s the one no one talks about.

Disclaimer: I’m calling myself out here, as I’m more than guilty of using the “shimmy out” on multiple occasions.

First, let’s do a little defining…

“Shimmy Out” (n) = a concept, post-subsequent romantic “dates” or encounters, when a person knows the person they are seeing will not end up a significant other. Even though this is known, the person feeling this way does not necessarily want to end the dating experience because they are A. Chicken. B. Bored. C. In denial. Thus, the person conjures up excuses to avoid seeing the person and hopes with enough avoidance, the other person will stop trying (I totally made this up, but it sounds intelligent, right?)

When This Strategy is a Woman’s Best Friend: When we know the guy likes us more than we like him.

Some Common “Shimmy Out” Examples:

“I’m So Busy”: This one is classic. We tell the guy we’re dating we are crazy busy and can’t see him for weeks at a time. I’m not saying this never happens (not seeing him for a few weeks at a time – every once in awhile – is completely possible. Hey, we have many plans that don’t revolve around him). I’m talking about purposely not finding an hour for brunch or dinner or MAKING UP PLANS ENTIRELY (imaginary family in town, non-existent homework, a 10-year dead dog suddenly needs to go to the vet…) Here’s the deal: Yes, we are busy people BUT, if we see super potential in a man, and truly enjoy his company, we WILL always find time to see him. I don’t care how busy we are or seem to be. Trust me, we’ll make the time.

“This is Moving Too Fast:” In my opinion, women overuse this one on the regular. First of all, has anyone noticed we drop this line often, yet never explain the rationale behind it? Do you know why we don’t explain it? It’s because most of the time, we are full of crap. If we really like a guy and we are dating him in hopes of something more, then going at whatever pace it naturally moves – most of the time fast – is a non-issue. However, if we say this and we do have an immediate answer (we just got out of a relationship or some sort of other emotional issue) then guess what? We probably aren’t ready to be dating someone seriously, anyway. Also, (fun fact) guys can see through this line if you give it without a reason. Don’t expect him to stick around.

“I Never Check My Phone”: Lies, lies, and more lies. Women are forever checking their phones. Any guy who believes you don’t is pretty oblivious. Let’s break it down: If a guy is texting or calling, that means he’s interested. If we don’t respond, it doesn’t mean we didn’t see his text message or listen to his voicemail. We did (and to be quite honest, we probably did within the first half hour of hearing the “ding”). If we don’t respond to the text or call him back until 12-24 hours later (or at all), we really aren’t all that interested in the guy. Instead, we just want to keep him around until something better comes along (ouch).

“OMG I TOTES Didn’t Realize I Had XYZ Tonight! Can We Reschedule?”/”OMG I Suddenly Came Down With the Ebola Virus/Horse Clamp (HORSE CLAMP??). I’m Too Sick To Go Out”: Womp. Womp. Busted. The truth is we just spent the better part of an hour deciding which of these elaborate excuses we’ll use to cancel. Taking this one step further, we’ll say we’ll reschedule, but we won’t. If we do, we don’t mean it and will probably cancel the next time too. The worst part is the poor guy usually gives us the benefit of the doubt in either case, which makes this tactic plain mean. Unfortunately, this is the one we use the most because we think we’ll never get caught. News flash: We always do.

These are just a few of the many excuses women use to “shimmy out.” What’s your favorite?

Stay tuned for more on this topic in the coming weeks. Don’t worry, I’m going to be writing about how guys get out of dates, too…

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All a Woman Needs to Know, She Can Learn from Gone With the Wind

25 Nov

Thanksgiving weekend is time to spend with family and friends. It’s also a great time to catch up on quality television. This weekend, I spent 235 minutes watching Gone With the Wind. Not only is the film cinematically beautiful, but a woman can truly learn everything she ever needs to know about men watching this film. I know what you’re thinking – this film is from 1939. Male and female relationships evolved since then. After watching the film, I wholeheartedly disagree. The confusing, messed up, and over-analyzed relationships between males and females are as confusing, messed up, and over-analyzed as they’ll ever be. Plus, if you are still single (and around my age), you really don’t have anything to lose by learning from your predecessors in the game of love. So listen up ladies, Gone With the Wind holds some secrets to relationship success:

I Love You: Throughout the film, men fall all over Scarlett. The most interesting element of her love interests is that the men who love her don’t know her for very long, yet say “I love you” quickly and easily. The one time SHE says “I love you” and “I want to marry you” first, she’s rejected by her beloved Ashley. It makes you wonder…is saying “I love you” really that hard for a man? I argue, no, it’s not. Further, are men turned off by a woman initiating the first move? You bet your ass. Allow me to explain. Men know, after a short amount of time, whether they love a woman. Same goes for if they want to marry a woman. The problem is, most women can’t wait for this moment to naturally occur. They say “I love you” first or pressure for the ring. This makes men run for the hills, prolongs the process, or even puts it into the long term/maybe never bucket. If you are pressuring him, ask yourself why. Is it because you’re afraid he’ll never say it/do it at all? Like Scarlett to Ashley? If that’s the case, you need to take a really careful look at your relationship. If it’s because you are simply impatient, you need to relax. He loves you. You know he does. Let him do it on his own terms.

Marriage Material: At the beginning of the film, poor Scarlett O’Hara overhears an unpleasant conversation about her. The point of the conversation is simple: men don’t marry women like Scarlett. She’s outspoken, pragmatic, independent, rebellious, sometimes irrational…wait, Scarlett actually sounds a lot like me. Do men really not marry women like Scarlett? If they do marry women like Scarlett (in the film, Scarlett marries three times) are these marriages doomed from the get-go?  At the end of the day, women like Scarlett push the good ones away (like Rhett Bulter) because we (yes, I’m including myself here) are always going after something that doesn’t exist…like the asshole bad boy who leads you on and treats you like crap, yet we think will eventually change (like Ashley). So, are women like Scarlett, myself, and many others marriage material? Sure. However, what we  need to learn is that no man wants to be with a woman who is not easy to be with. If we are always looking for the next best thing (or something that doesn’t exist at all) we are going to be up a creek without a paddle…alone.

Alcohol Consumption Makes the Idiot: Listen up, ladies. When you’re hammered, you’re an idiot around guys. You are either too flirty, too fiesty, too forward…and there are a few other choice “f” words I can fathom. In Gone with the Wind, Scarlett takes a liking to brandy…and drinks to cope with her failed marriages and unrequited love for Ashley. In turn, we regularly find Scarlett guzzling, hiccuping, or saying things she wishes she could take back. The fun part about this analysis is that Scarlett was aware of her actions, yet it didn’t exactly deter her from future initiations. Additionally, none of the men left her for making an ass out of herself. However, what I did notice was men did look at her differently post-incident. I’m convinced that after a woman makes a hot mess of herself post-cocktailing, a man doesn’t see her in the same light. Instead, they find it semi-comical, yet don’t respect her in the same way they may have previously. Take note, girls. How do you want to be seen?

I’ve Had It: The very last line of the movie is when Rhett is leaving Scarlett. He’s given her everything, loved her for years, and yet, she was (frankly) a bitch. Once Melanie dies and Scarlett learns Ashley never really loved her, Scarlett runs home and tries to patch things up with Rhett. However, it’s too late. As Scarlett cries out asking what should she do and where should she go, Rhett turns and strongly replies “Frankly my dear, I don’t give a damn.” He walks away, leaving Scarlett trying to figure out a plan to get him back. The movie ends and we never know if she was able to get him back. The lesson here is simple: yes, men can take a lot from women. However, there gets to a point when enough is enough. Relationships need to be nurtured. Women need to be kind. Men who give their everything to another deserve honesty and respect in return. Time and time again do we hear stories of overbearing, controlling women who are downright mean to the men in their lives. They do this because they are confident no matter what they do, the man won’t leave. Rest assure, men do have a breaking point, no matter how passive and understanding they may appear. Relationships are not something to take for granted…as Rhett showed us, they can be gone in a heartbeat.

Every woman should watch Gone with the Wind. Not only can you learn how to snag a good guy (and keep him), but it’s a sure-fire confidence boost. If the amazing and beautiful Scarlett O’Hara can consistently mess up her love life, I think we modern women can be a little less hard on ourselves as we continuously learn from our mistakes.

I want to hear from you! Please leave your comments. I love responding.

Ode to the Slutty Halloween Costume

24 Oct

Halloween is a pretty stressful holiday. Why? It’s not because you’re stressing about the act of wearing a costume (Because duh, you should. Only un-fun people refuse to dress-up). It’s over what (or who) you should dress up as. Should your costume be slutty or tasteful? Scary or stupid? Let’s be real – for most girls, slutty prevails. Thus, we arrive at the question even more puzzling than why Justin Timberlake didn’t pick me: What is the appeal of the slutty Halloween costume?

Ooooo! (raising my hand reeeeeally high). I can answer that. I am the queen of the slutty Halloween costume. When will I grow out of this stage? Hopefully never.

This year, like many years prior, it’s truly a struggle of mind-over-matter. When am I too old to wear the slutty Halloween costume? Haven’t I worn enough slutty costumes over the years? Hmm. Like the Ghost of Christmas past yields to the meanness of Ebenezer Scrooge, the Ghost of Halloweens past wants to take you on a journey of  Kerry’s costumes of yesteryear…

19-Year-Old-College-Freshman Kerry: A Naughty Schoolgirl. Wait, stop right there – before you judge: in 2002, this costume was still hot and original. My then-roommate french braided my hair and I rocked a Limited Two pleated skirt (two sizes too small), a crop top, and white knee-highs. However, that doesn’t leave blogger walls…I’m pretty sure I told my mom I was Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz, instead.

20-Year-Old-Broke Kerry: A Black Cat. Spandex, ears, tail, and a nose. I’m pretty sure my costume cost less than $10. That was the year I got into my only-ever verbal spat with a chick. She was hogging the beer pong table. No bueno. Meeeeow.

21-Year-Old-I-Can-Legally-Drink Kerry: A Fairy Godmother. I walked around a frat party in my senior prom dress and held a wand. When cute boys approached, I tapped them with my wand and batted my eyelashes. This action made my wish come true: Friday night dates lined up for at least a month. Ah, to be young again.

25-Year-Old-in-the-Desert Kerry: Tinkerbell. What is up with me and fairy things? Covered in way too much glitter, this costume was slutty in a simplistic way. Tights, strappy dress, heels…wow, I was losing my touch. Boooring. Hey, I was living in Arizona. It was too hot to think.

28-Year-Old-Newly-Single-Back-in-the-Game Kerry: Varsity Cheerleader. I actually tried to bad-ass up this costume. My friend and I were “rival” cheerleaders (I on the blue team, she on the red). However, the skirt was short enough for scandal. I made sure of it.

29-Year-Old-and-Living-It-Up-Before-30 Kerry: A Cop. My sluttiest costume to-date. I don’t want to give too much away before the big reveal, but let’s just say one of my best friends is going to be “jailbait” just so my costume won’t look so ridiculously standout. That’s love right there.

At this point in the story, newly epiphanic Scrooge would head back to the real world, pack up his money, and start dishing out some serious gifts. If I chose to parallel, it’s at this point my subconscious is supposed to say, “Hey lady, grow up. You’re a professional member of society, an award-winning marketer, and a respected teacher. You need to start Grandma-ing up your chosen October digs. It’s time. Let it go.”

Sorry, Ghost. You got nothing on me. I choose to fight the system.

The reality is, a slutty Halloween costume has no reflection on your real-life personal taste, personality, or professionalism. Additionally – contrary to popular belief – a slutty costume does not automatically imply you are throwing out the “I want attention” card. Wearing a slutty Halloween costume can give a woman the opportunity to feel sexy and confident (Yes, it’s true – sometimes we really like wearing next-to-nothing to feel this way). Further, it can give a women the once-a-year opportunity to dress without judgement. Who cares if the costume looks like a nightie? Maybe she’s always wanted to wear a nightie outdoors. All the power to you, sister. Halloween allows her that freedom.

I am a proud advocate of the slutty Halloween costume. I don’t see myself growing out of this mantra anytime soon. Do you respect me less? Think I’m less intelligent? Feel sad because my costumes are a cry for attention?

I didn’t think so. Like many other women who sluttify their outfits around October 31st, I’m just playing dress-up.

Author’s Note: If you are reading this blog post and wear your slutty Halloween costume throughout the year…Goodnight and good luck.