The Truth is Stranger Than Fiction - An Introduction

Truth is Stranger Than Fiction - An Introduction

My first foray into the Social Networking world was some years ago, in 2005 I believe, with Yahoo. They had a site called Yahoo 360° that was their own attempt at MySpace, which, at the time, was all the rage. I hadn't been bitten by the MySpace bug yet, but I was already an active member of Yahoo, so to get my feet wet, I set up a Yahoo 360° profile.

Blogging was an extremely attractive prospect to me. I love to write, I love to give myself that type of "outlet" to my problems, fears, joys, and experiences. I've kept diaries and journals off and on over the years and they've always been therapeutic when I took the time to keep them up. But this... a public diary? How do I approach such a thing? How much do I divulge? And what, praytel, do I write about that would actually entice people to read it?

Browsing thru existing blogs, one thing was an absolute MUST: I could not, would not, write about mundane things that no one but myself would care about. I needed an angle-- Something that I could write passionately about. Something that people, in general, have an interest in. Something that would grab the attention of the public. And something that had a "theme." I found that, to me personally, a blog that jumped around all over the place was difficult to read. A theme would keep me in check, and allow me to focus, rather than a stream of conscious that I was sure would bore to death anyone who came across my page.

The idea came to me fairly quickly. I was newly divorced and discovering the delights and annoyances of being single and dating in my 30's. It was perfect!
Love, sex, relationships, dating... The overall general interaction between men and women has always been a fascination and a sure-fire hit to our society, if not our entire species! I had my topic, I was ready to roll...

Yahoo has since shut down their 360° forum, and the experience I had there was both rewarding and therapeutic. So I am going to retell my adventures in a retro-active tale here, and see if I can gather the same, if not bigger, audience I did there. Maybe I can even get inspired enough to bring the whole thing up to date and wrap it all up into a happy ending? We shall see...

So, here we go! Hello, my name is Jennifer. I am 37 years old and I've been divorced just over 6 years now. Fasten your seat belts, boys and girls, it's gonna be one hell of a ride!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Chapter 50: Perfect Evening

"Thumper" was on my email before I even got to work in the morning, asking me over for the following evening, a Wednesday, for dinner. He wanted to cook for me. How could I say "no?"

After work, I eagerly drove to his place, and was not only surprised, I was highly impressed. His house was impeccable, and his creativity for a meal surpassed anything I could have dreamed up. We had Yellowtail Merlot, and a spinach salad, garnished with walnuts, strawberries and feta cheese, topped with a homemade balsamic vinegarette dressing, and for the main course? Cedar-plank grilled salmon fillets glazed with a garlic-maple-soy sauce, and a side of honey-dijon mashed potatoes and sauteed asparagus. (Yes, we are talking about a straight man here!) He had bought some Key Lime Pie for dessert, but we never made it that far.

All the romantic gestures, the longing gazes across the table... I allowed myself to be swept up into the faery tale evening. I could just say that we had sex, but it wasn't like that. We made love. It was sensual, and sweet... we were exploring each other, getting to know each other on a deeper level. I couldn't remember the last time sex had been so intense. Or rather, I couldn't remember the last time a man had been this intense.

We lay there afterwards, and here came the tears again. (Wait, this IS a straight man, right?) Okay, yes, we definitely were connecting on an intangible and indescribable level, but I just didn't know if I could handle the tears at every turn. He talked to me with desperation in his voice, to accurately convey what he was feeling. He told me that I had touched him in a way he never imagined. I had his heart, 100% complete and pure. For a moment, I thought he was going to tell me he loved me. How would I handle that? I would not, could not say it back. This was ridiculous. I turned the conversation around to a lighter, more joking arena, to avoid the possibility that he might let the "L" word slip out. And it worked. Whew!

I asked him if he was free Saturday night if he would accompany me to my brother's Halloween party. It was a date, and he was already professing how much he couldn't wait.

Yes, it was moving quick, but I wanted to enjoy it and not analyze it.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Chapter 49: Too Soon To Jump Back In The Saddle?

The day after "Tarzan" and I broke up, I reactivated my profile on Match. I also signed on to eHarmony. A few weeks back, eHarmony had sent me a match that had sounded quite intriguing, but since I was unavailable I had put "Thumper" on hold. I knew I was probably acting out of rebound-anger, but I reactivated the connection with "Thumper". To my surprise, he responded immediately. By the end of the day we had already gone through the five-step guided communication process, and by Monday morning, we were already talking via email and Yahoo Messenger.

"Thumper" was completely taken with me, and he let me know this in no uncertain terms in every communication. I don't really know exactly what it was that I said that made him so smitten, but I was willing to go with it. I needed a little "awe" in my life.

He wanted to meet me immediately, but he had, unfortunately, made a date that night with another girl he'd met on eHarmony at the same time he met me. He made it obvious that he really didn't want to go on this date anymore, and wanted to meet me instead. While this was very flattering, it wasn't exactly a great character-trait to me, to cancel on a date on such short notice and for such a manipulative reason. I encouraged him to go on the date. But he was meeting her early for dinner. So I suggested a compromise: IF and only IF the dinner date ended early, like 10-ish, maybe he could call me and we could meet for late night drinks?

He loved the idea. I didn't really expect to hear from him that night, but he called at 9:30, claiming that she had needed to leave early anyway, and very much wanted to see me. We met at Applebee's for drinks, and the first words out of his mouth were, "You are BEAUTIFUL!" We talked and had a lot of things in common. I asked him how his dinner date was, and he said that it was better than he had expected it to be, and he would probably see her again, but admitted that, all evening, he couldn't wait to see me. He held my hand across the table the whole time and gazed at me with an amazing look on his face. I really couldn't believe that he could possibly be THIS taken with me so quickly!

We eventually had to agree that it was getting late and walked out to my car. Not wanting to say good night just yet, we sat in my car to have a cigarette, and kept talking. He leaned over and kissed me, and it was a passionate, longing, very sensual kiss. When he pulled away, he sighed and said, "I just knew that you would be a good kisser." When I looked into his face, there were tears on his cheeks.

Tears??? Are you serious? He didn't try to hide them. He said he felt this amazing connection to me, that I had touched his emotions and his heart so fervently that this one kiss just allowed it all to bubble up. This was all very sweet, but just a tad over the top. Or was I so jaded at this point that I didn't believe you could connect to someone so deeply that quick? Maybe he believed in love at first sight, and I was too cynical to allow the possibility? It was a pleasant distraction from "Tarzan", though, I had to admit.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Chapter 48: Can't Say I Was Surprised

Over the next few weeks, I felt this distancing from "Tarzan". It wasn't completely tangible, just a feeling. We still talked on the phone, saw each other several times a week, and spent the weekends with the girls.

We had a WONDERFUL day with the girls that month. We took them to the Conyers Fall Festival, then went roller skating, and finally, took them to Piccadilly for dinner before getting them home to their mom on time. It was easy to ignore the distance growing between "Tarzan" and I when we were with the girls. For the first time that day, they told me they loved me, and I was elated. I loved them, too, more than I ever thought I could love a child. "Tarzan" expressed his approval, too. He would constantly remind me how wonderful he thought it was that I accepted his girls as much as I did. This surprised me. Why wouldn't I? They were a package deal. However, he explained, there are a lot of women out there that refuse to compete with children in a relationship. Whatever! They don't know what they are missing!

The following week we all planned to go to the zoo. "Tarzan" called Friday night with the girls there, and let me talk to them so we could squeal and giggle together about how much we were looking forward to going to the zoo the next day.

Later that night, I signed onto Match. I have no idea why. My profile had been hidden for two months when "Tarzan" and I agreed to take both of them down. My mailbox was empty, and my "Who's viewed me counter" was not moving. I guess there was a part of me that wanted to see how active some of the people I'd met in the past had been, like "Tramp", "Goofy", "Mickey", "Shrek", or "Aladdin". Were their profiles still active? Had they logged on recently? Yes, Match makes it pretty easy to do a bit of online stalking if you are so inclined. :-P

I logged on and felt like someone had just thrust a knife in my stomach. There was "Tarzan's" profile, upfront, active, and very visible. Are you serious? He just decided to start dating again without even talking to me? I knew that we were having a little stormy weather lately, but how could he do this? My stomach felt like it had cinched up into a double-knot. I wanted to call him that instant and ask him what the f--k he thought he was doing. But I restrained. I decided the best course of action was to call in the morning, before I went over, and clarify our relationship before I spent all day long at the zoo with him and the girls, pretending like I didn't know he'd done this.

Well, he claimed that he had signed on to cancel his membership altogether, and must have hit the wrong thing. This wasn't altogether implausible, as Match had recently reconfigured the site and the activating buttons were all different, but it was still a lame excuse. Regardless, though, I needed clarification from him, and I wanted it before I committed my entire day. As you can imagine, the conversation was not a pleasant one. One of the girls was not feeling well, and the zoo trip was off, so I was advised not to come over at all. I hung up knowing that our relationship was hanging in the balance, but not completely sure if we had broken up or not.

He called later that night after the girls went home. This conversation was much more calm and rational, but the result was still the same. He was no longer comfortable in this relationship and feared we wanted different things. After being upset, worried, and crying all day long, I was rather numb. He wanted to stay in touch, he still wanted me to be a part of his life. I didn't know how I wanted to handle it, but I just agreed to let things settle as they may and I said good-bye to "Tarzan".