Going Fishing

Now that time and great friends have given me perspective on my missed connection last Friday, I realize the real lesson I learned: I feel ready to date again.

For such a long time, the strings on my heart from Floyd kept me from truly thinking about any guy in that way. And it definitely kept me from wholeheartedly allowing myself to pursue or be pursued by guys. I must admit that I’m not 100% over my ex and that I will probably compare any new guy I meet to him--at least at first. But I no longer have a silly fantasy of one day getting back with my ex. He is a friend, and I hope he is always a friend, but I know that an “us” really isn’t possible. Our paths crossed for several years and I am stronger and wiser for it all. But now, I must reentered the dating world.

I am scared. I am afraid of men and of sex. I don't know if I can effectively navigate that world after so many years of being out of circulation. Added to that, all the horror stories about dates from hell and immature, commitmentphobe boy-men, and I am all ready to commit myself to a life of celibacy and singlehood before I've even given it a try.

Yet, I know from experience that there is nothing like being in love. And from what I've heard, there is nothing like committing yourself to and growing old with the one person you can't live without.

Yes, I think I'm ready. I'm going to order two dozen dating profile cards, as suggested by Heather and Organica (what do you think about these, chicas?), to help out when I've found a worthwhile connection.

The big test will be when I see Floyd this weekend. I hope that I can keep it together and not revert to my old self. Although we have talked on the phone, I haven't seen him since he visited last summer and told me that we were totally over. So much has changed in my life since then--and for the better.

So quite timid and just a bit jaded, I'll slowly let my guard down in hopes of finding the one I can truly love forever.


Missed Connections

I apologize for dragging this topic out but I am still aggravated about Friday night. As you know, I posted a missed connection ad on Craigslist. I am aware that the rate of success from such posts is rather slim but I figured that it wouldn’t hurt to at least put it out there and let the universe decide. I like to think that I’ve racked up a fair amount of good karma over the years, so hopefully, the universe will reward me with the one thing I want the most right now: a second chance.

After I posted my ad, I started reading the other ads out there. There are so many. Most describe interactions that were brief and only on the surface. Others are a bit more bittersweet—about connecting with someone but subsequently, losing a phone number (and apparently not being able to find them on facebook).

I’d like to think that I fall in the bittersweet box. The more I think about it, the more I believe that I was provided the real deal, a high-quality, single male. Someone who was clearly interested in me. Someone who I was drawn to and felt safe with. But I don’t remember his full name, and I’m quite sure that I’ll never see him again. Yes, I am hopeful but I am also a realist.

I wonder how many people miss out on great loves because of circumstances that get in the way. I do believe in Fate and the idea that our life experiences are meant to teach us lessons. I also hope that the unresolved feelings I have about the guy I met will result in karmic déjà vu—and hopefully I’ll meet him again in this lifetime and not the next.

It is possible that the guy was just a mirage. A means to remind me of my deepest desires and goals. That I want to find my soul mate, the holy grail of dating: the “mind-blowing lover/life partner/best friend forever/father of my children/husband til death do us part”. Since Floyd and I split, I’ve sort of shut down and built extra walls around my heart. I immediately think the worse of any guy who tries to talk to me. Or worse, I immediately evaluate the guy in terms of the holy grail I am seeking. And that isn’t fair to the guy or myself.

So today, I am kicking myself still. In a week or two, I hope that I would have finished internalizing my faults and truly committed myself to being the confident, sassy chica around all the guys that I meet, even the ones I like.


Got No Game

I am sitting up a little angry and a little disappointed in myself, and decided to post just to get this off my chest.

I need to work on not being shy and aloof around guys—especially the ones I like. I am so afraid of rejection and I lack the self-confidence when it comes to men to truly assert myself.

I’ve had countless talks with friends—especially Organica—about my need to get over it and just put myself out there. Sure, I’m shy but that doesn’t give me a pass to be an aloof wallflower for the rest of my life.

Tonight, I met a great guy. We talked and danced for quite some time. I later learned that he asked my friend about me, noting that he liked me but wasn’t getting a vibe of reciprocity from me.

I guess his interest was obvious but for some reason, I felt the need to reject him or push him away before he could do that to me. It wasn't intentional but it was the vibe I gave off and eventually, we parted.

It’s a warped expression of my sense of self-worth, distrustfulness, and attractiveness when it comes to guys. But I don’t know where it comes from. I like myself. And I’m a strong, confident woman most of the time. But whenever, I am around guys, especially funny, charming guys who like me, I falter and the self-conscious, unsure little girl in me comes out.

It’s something that I need to work on so that the next guy who comes along who appears to be the real deal and wants to get to know me, can get a fair chance.

In the meantime, I’ve posted a missed connection--one of my favorite pastimes from the college years. I know it won’t amount to anything. But putting it out on the web and into the cosmos, I hope will send something positive my way.

Regardless, I've learned my lesson. I can't let good guys get away or I'll end up alone (with a family of stray cats).


FDA to Address Salt

I'm overjoyed by the latest news that FDA plans to limit amount of salt allowed in processed foods for health reasons. This blog's namesake comes from my concern with the amount of sodium in the foods I eat. I've always loved the taste of salt. I can remember eating table salt in small handfuls as a child and loading up on olives and pickles for that salty high. I look back in wonder that I don't have major medical problems now (especially after years of buttery grits+bacon breakfasts and cooking in cast iron skillet with fat drippings or butter. What a revolution it was when we first got a non-stick pan!). High blood pressure runs in my family, so, I recognize the need to adopt a low-sodium diet now instead of waiting until I'm older and years of salt excess starts to take its toll. I don't want to have to take blood pressure meds or take drastic dietary changes when I'm 40+ like the older members of my family. Now, I try to avoid cooking with salt and consuming processed foods that are loaded with it. But it can be hard.

Three cheers for FDA and NYC's initiative. Sure, it may seem like Big Brother is once again meddling in the minutiae of our lives. For the record, I don't have a problem with Big Brother. But when there is such an obesity and wellness crisis occurring in our country--especially among children, teenagers, and people of color, I don't have any problems with the government stepping in, in an attempt to help Americans become healthier and live longer.


"In Heat"

Over the weekend, I found myself watching a handful of Patti Stanger's tip videos on Bravotv. I must say The Millionaire Matchmaker is a guilty pleasure. I love watching Patti interact with her clients and give out advice to the men and women she tries to match. I don't know if I agree with everything she says but I think she provides a no-holds-barred view of modern dating that may turn out to be very helpful to a dating novice like me. Yes, I've already requested her book from the library.

In one of the tip videos she recommended that women date three guys at once: one guy who may be a keeper, one guy you aren't sure about, and one guy who is a definite no but who you have a lot of fun with (think: a go-to escort for a theatre night, friend's wedding, work gathering, etc). Having all three helps to ensure that you always have options on a friday night if your first choice, "the keeper," isn't available. But, perhaps, most importantly, it ensures that you don't become a woman "in heat"--one who is dying for male attention--romantic or otherwise. I guess that is another way of saying that "having a pair plus a spare" helps you avoid giving off the desperation vibe.

That really hit home for me. I think I have a deficiency of male attention in my life. I have a few male friends at and outside of work, but I'm not even close to having even three candidates to fill the spots. And I can only imagine that helps to create or add to my "stay away" vibe.

I think it would be good to have a larger male perspective in my life. Having more male friends will help me become less nervous, eager, and neurotic around cute guys so that when the guy I really want comes along, I am cool, confident, calm and collected--and not the needy version of myself who jumps ahead to wedding bells.

But first, I have to stop feeling uneasy about adding males to the mix. And for that I need to see every guy as a potential friend and not automatically evaluate him as potential boyfriend/lover/husband material.

So no, I am not ready to date yet. But I am ready to meet some new men--as friends.

It looks like I will be joining a kickball league with an old friend. I think he and kickball will be just the ticket to adding to my repertoire.


What do you do?

It is possibly the most commonly asked question in D.C. It is my old standby for starting conversations and keeping them going in social and professional settings. Only once, did someone call me out for asking it: “now that’s an annoying D.C. question.” But last week, at a Hill happy hour that question was taken to a whole new level.

I attended a happy hour with a friend and towards the end of the evening, we decided to say hello to someone we thought was in the same professional circle. The conversation started awkwardly and only got worse. We approached and said, “Hi.” He half-heartedly was asked, as if we were groupies, “What office do you work in?” We responded. His body language immediately changed, but only a little (my friend and I work in notable offices). The next question, “Are you interns?” I responded by laughing out loud and shaking my head, quite flattered that I could still pass for a naïve, idealistic intern when I know that I’m becoming a typical jaded, burned-out staffer. He pressed on, “What is your title?” I’ve never been asked that. We told him. He wasn’t impressed. The conversation sort of ended with awkward well-wishes as he turned away. I guess weren’t on “his level.”

First of all, I must admit that I have almost immediately discounted people based on where they work. I’m not proud of it, but some days, I’m so focused on making the “right” professional contact that I will immediately discount the Republicans I meet and even the non-Hill folks. But in reality, everyone you meet is a potential contact to help you gain access and information, not only about your job, but about DC, traveling abroad, rec. sports, an amazing tailor/restaurant, etc.
Also, this encounter reminded me of why I don’t like most guys on the Hill. They are often obnoxious, arrogant climbers who (yes even in the age of Madame Speaker and Madame Secretary) often don’t value women as professional power players. I am not necessarily proud of the professional superiority card I have played at Hill receptions when I’m feeling defensive or even smug. But I never feel the need to be purposefully rude.

My friend and I won’t ever forget our interaction with this guy. It was a good lesson for us both. It doesn’t necessarily matter where you are at any one moment. What matters is where you are going, what you do to get there, and how you treat others along the way.



This week, I attended the funeral of a friend’s father. It was a beautiful service and a perfect day. But it was also a hard day for me. Not only in seeing the pain and sadness in the faces of my friend and her family but also in being reminded of the funeral service of my own father.

I was struck most of all by the comment that her father told his family that he had no regrets in his life, that he had lived it fully. It can only hope that I can come to the end with such a mindset. I can’t say that I have any regrets (except for the unreasonable ones related to the last days of my dad’s life), but I can say that I haven’t lived my life to the fullest, at least not yet. There are so many places I want to live, so many things I want to do, and so many experiences I want to share with loved ones.

Life is so short. Tomorrow, even the next minute, are not promised. It is so easy to become engulfed in the day-to-day, the rat race of climbing the career/personal ladder, that you don’t stop and enjoy yourself and enjoy the moment. Enjoy the little things: the laughter of the little girl on the Metro, the soup made by a friend, waking up to the bright sun, etc. Appreciate the little things: you are alive, you have loving friends and family, you have already achieved a few life goals, you have a home, you feel safe.

Since the funeral, I have been trying to do just that. It might just be the warm weather and the fact that I am finally through with the season of mourning (Nov-March) that I’ve made a tradition. But I’m feeling better. I’m feeling calmer, hopeful and optimistic, even if a little antsy, about what is to come.

This is an important year for me. I want to be sure that I live it, always in the pursuit of inner peace and happiness – in whatever form I deem it to be.

Life is precious.

Carpe diem.