On one particular evening in 2010, I found myself glued to the Sundance Channel watching some documentary called Catfish. I had never heard of it before, but after glaring at the description for a few moments — I decided to watch the entire film.
If you never watched the film, then it’s worth checking out, especially if you’re curious about the new MTV series Catfish: The Tv Show. Basically this guy named Nev ends up falling for a girl online, and he learns that her little sister is an amazing artists. As he builds up a relationship with this striking woman via Facebook, phone calls, and texting, his brother films the entire process. But at a certain point, the time comes to actually take a journey and meet the girl of his dreams…but she isn’t the beautiful sex pistol with a huge social life and a heart for Nev. Nope, it’s an older woman with kids, scraggly hair, and an awkward personality. Yeah, he was majorly blindsided.
Have you ever gone through anything like that? Maybe you have, maybe you haven’t…but I have. In my adventures of online dating and making friends online ever since the coolness of Myspace, I’ve had my fair share of lies. The lies about their “lives” varied each time. And one time the guy looked nothing like his pictures at all. Instead of being this light skin hottie with a bright smile, he was this dark skin (I didn’t mind, but don’t lie about your complexion) tall guy with messed up teeth, a horrible smile, and a life that was a scam. Yet, I dated him for two weeks, then dumped him. Guess I was lonely and used him for company. Haha, I’m not perfect either.
I’ve been through it so many times. Even falling in love with a guy, meeting in person, dating for three weeks, allowing myself to be madly in love, and then realizing his name was a lie, his education, where he lived, his car situation, his family, and realizing he had fake Facebook profiles and a girlfriend. Yeah, never letting myself trust that hardcore again. Well, I trust some people, but it’s going to take time. All these men I’ve met offline and have built friendships with, even relationships, end up being married, have girlfriends, or just scumbags. Online dating and interactions have become some polluted by fakes, that it is hard to find true folks; even some go to extreme to make their life seem so real on Google. Guess you never know.
I’m not perfect, but never have I lied about my life or my looks. As many pictures as I take and I have Skype and my life is basically on the web via this blog, it would be pretty hard to make up stories; my life is cool, why hide it? But some people, for whatever reasons, build online connections with people under false pretenses. And the show Catfish is all about that.
The first episode of the show followed a girl named sunny who had a 8 month online relationship with a model, but Nev slowly unraveled the truth and took her to meet her beau. But come to find out, it ended up being this overweight vindictive girl who was bullied in HS and decided to start getting back to strangers. She never even met the guy she claimed to be, but had made a profile for him and everything. Horrible, right? But I did enjoy the drama and intrigue, and it’s safe to say we can expect more of that from this Catfish TV Show.
So, did you watch the first episode? Has it ever happened to you? I will admit, I’ve had a lot of bad encounters, but I’ve good as well. This year I met a guy I had known for 2 years online, but we had at least Skyped, text, and talked on the phone. And you know what, it was awesome meeting in NYC. We are still great friends and we both were telling the truth about ourselves. So in the midst of the bad, their can still be some good, and hopefully Catfish will have a few stories that end up good. Guess we will have to wait and see until next week!
Oh and if you’re wondering have I learned my lesson? Yes. Even though I have an Okcupid account, I doubt I will end up meeting anybody soon. I rather date and mingle in the club or a bar rather than online, but I guess it doesn’t hurt to have a profile up.
Our society functions off the principle of “hello, goodbye, never,” so I don’t see why these men get so terribly upset. When I say “hello,goodbye,never” I basically am referring to the concept of relationships not being long-term.
Connectivity has become diminished to short to term promises, instead of relationships that have longevity. Now, I don’t think all of our society is like that, but a majority of the young men and women I encounter are in tune with that mindset. So if these immature men I meet are just looking for something easy and a sex kitten, then they can easily go find a girl that fulfills their needs and doesn’t enrage them with intellectual conversation.
If it’s not for you, then it’s not for you. You meet someone, you attempt to accomplish whatever it is you are in search of, then you say goodbye, and then you move on. I used to try to treat every man I met like he was going to be the next man I fell in love with, but that wasn’t the case. Usually it was just one date, a few phone calls afterwards, and then we never spoke again. That’s how it’s done nowadays. No stress, no pressure, no expectations.
I’m not necessarily pleased with the way things operate, but it doesn’t mean I’m not also an advocate of the no expectation theory. I can’t expect every man to understand me and want to have a long-term relationship, but that doesn’t mean I just become a girl that is “easy” and just focused on making love faces. Being an easy slut isn’t cool, especially since I’m a woman that has morals, intellectual pursuits, and a personality that doesn’t allow me to objectify myself. I’m a Taurus; I’m too stubborn and confident to succumb to being just someone’s object of affection pleasure. My aggressive nature is better suit for intense romance that encompasses physical, mental, and spiritual.
Life and the journey of love are something I value. I’ve been through a lot of crappy men and dragged into ignorant conversations, but I still have this redeeming quality in me that allows me to believe in something great magically happening one day. I’ve been the side chick, finding out men are married or even have girlfriends, and feeling like a total blow in the face. And some of the situations I put myself in, I’m not perfect either. Yet, even with all the horrible things that have happened to me emotionally and physically, I still somehow believe there is a good man out there; I just can’t sit and try to pinpoint the day it will come true, or the type of guy that will become more than just a “hello,goodbye, never.”
What I mean is I don’t know when I’ll meet a man that is more than just some great conversation, a date, perhaps a kiss, a little foreplay, and then a goodbye, followed by never talking or hanging out again. There was a point and time in which I’d be highly disappointed or beat myself up over the lack of longevity in my interactions with men, but then I realized it wasn’t me, it’s the societal approach to dating. The pool of human emotions and interactions is more like an ocean, a massive body of water that can be rough, soothing, gentle, and even deadly, while still bringing forth life. The tides are always changing, but in the midst of all the change there is still a system at work that will bring forth meaningful existence.
Good men and good women still exist; it’s just that those of us in the dating “game” realize that we have to go through a lot of hell in order to find that meaningful connection. But it all makes sense, right? I mean, how can you truly appreciate the good if you’ve never experienced the bad? I’ve experienced a great deal of bad, but I’ve also run across some good. It may not have been the greatest batch of good, but it did have qualities that made me appreciate what I had in comparison to the prior horrors.
I’m not giving up on pursuit of a meaningful relationship, but I will say the journey has been interesting, downright comical at times. At least all my “hello,goodbye, never” encounters have been educational moments that I can one day look back upon and cherish. Life is hard, dating is hard, and being a human being is hard. But I know that as long as I’m growing from my experiences, the end result won’t be a waste of time. And sometimes, I’ve been that one to say “hello, goodbye, never.”
Monday morning classes came and went this week. I was exhausted from having a cool conversation on the phone the previous night and wasn’t looking forward to sitting through acting and scriptwriting. My ethnic studies class was canceled, so I walked off campus and headed to the Starbucks located not too far from my downtown campus. The tall white guy behind the counter was always in a chipper mood and you could tell he loved his job. I wondered if he was a musician on the side or a sultry poet. Whatever he did, you could tell that he had such a zest for life. I ordered my usual Caramel Macchiato, which is also my nickname that many guys have called me, along with giggles due to my childish giggle.
After my venti drink was given to me, I popped my Ipod ear buds back in my ear, put my hood over my newly dyed jet black hair (it brings out my features more, makes me edgier!), I sauntered out the door and headed to my literary studies class. I was forty minutes early, so I crawled up on a bench and began reading a ritzy black socialite novel by Angela Winters. I had forgot my Jerome Dickey book at home =(. The time flew by and the next thing I knew…I was nursing my Caramel Macchiato and talking with a girl in my class. We were discussing our plans for next semester and her decision to move back down south. I asked her how her boyfriend and her were handling the situation. She explained that he was moving to another western state for a new job, he was already established in his career, and she was till in the process of her undergraduate work. As I continued to sip my coffee, she was seemingly frustrated with the whole decision. I suggested they trying going long distance and she replied “We did that before, it didn’t work, that’s why I moved here….to be with him.”
She told me most likely they would break up, because she wanted the chance to still find herself. We got silent for a brief moment and she asked me if I had a boyfriend. I sat down my coffee, looked over at her, and basically said “Nah, I’m good.” The girl began laughing, I could tell that my sly remark had cheered her up. She checked her blackberry and saw it was her boyfriend calling. She shook her head and looked over at me “Yeah, don’t waste your time with it. It’s hard dating in college, especially when your young and still finding yourself. Girl your so lucky…I’m glad your good.” We laughed at the whole situation and our professor walked in the classroom to let us know that this was our final informal class session and we could leave if we wanted. I grabbed my coffee, put on some Tabi Bonney, and headed back towards campus.
That wasn’t the first time I replied with the simple yet explanatory phrase “nah, I’m good.” I see the hassle and stress that some of my friends my age 19-24 go through dealing with relationships and I’m so good…I don’t want it or need it. I enjoy the beautiful silence I have some nights and I don’t want to waste my time with someone I kind of like, but I could do without their presence in my life. A few weeks ago I began to feel the pressures of dating and relationships in my atmosphere.A lot of the girls and guys around me were falling in love, going on dates, getting pregnant, daydreaming about getting married, and dedicating a majority of their time to the idea and work of a relationship. Lives around me were becoming consumed with dedication and commitment, and I began to feel for a brief moment maybe I should give it a chance.
That brief moment came, watched a movie, used the bathroom, and drove off a cliff. I’m so good on the idea of having a man in my life right now. Don’t want it and to be honest don’t really need it. I never have a problem attracting men, all kind of men and some handsome ones at that, but after awhile I get irritated and bored. My time is precious and I don’t like to engage in havoc. Men can be such a bore and their platitudes burn out quickly. Women can be the same as well, that’s why sometimes I prefer to be alone in my creative sandbox.
I can be the life of the party, but I also enjoy beautiful solitude. Dealing with people can become quite exhausting after awhile, but I still manage to juggle back and forth depending upon my mood. Some people have amazing personalities and there are those with erroneous antics. I grew up having the “it” factor and perfected the skills necessary to truly be the “it” girl. Being bold and outgoing has nothing to do with looks, but having that confidence that can shake the ground. I walk with an edgy confidence and I dare haterz to say anything. I don’t too much care what anyone thinks, especially people who I don’t have a meaningful relationship with.
I love not having to worry about anyone else but my immediate family and a few extended family members. I barely talk to my friends on a daily basis, so I definitely don’t want to have to worry about talking to some guy every day. I’m not a relationship cynic or have some commitment phobia…I just enjoy my freedom and see no point in having a boyfriend anytime soon. It took me awhile to finally have the courage to admit my true feelings. For months, I kept battling with “I want someone to love me” and “Nah, I’m good…don’t want to be bothered”. Now I’m officially dedicated to the “Nah, I’m good” statement and not putting effort in entertaining any men.
But, oh no! As a woman, your not supposed to say such a dramatic statement. A woman is supposed to be thirsty for a knight and shining armor, a woman is supposed to do a career only because she can’t find a suitable man, a woman is supposed to aspire to be a housewife, a woman is supposed to find one guy, date him, and stick with him even if he doesn’t enjoy being monogamous. Oh please, that is such a double standard. So it’s okay for men to date around and not take commitment serious, but it’s not okay for a woman?
That’s the attitude that I’ve received from so many men that I have turned down. They always come back with the lame line “but why? your single, I’m single, so why not?” There are so many reasons why not, for starters I’m not interested in getting caught up in a clingy relationship when I’m four semesters away from graduating college and moving back to the DC Metropolitan. Secondly, your not the man of my dreams. I understand that everyone is in transition in their lives, but doesn’t mean I want to experience my transition with someone else. I go to school full time, live with my parents, working on a second book, help out with my brother’s career, and I do lots of other creative tasks on the side….I’m too busy to care about someone else’s problems.
I’ll admit, I can be a flirtatious and charming woman. I have a natural seductive high, easy flowing conversations, and I play video-games. To most men, I’m the perfect catch…but doesn’t mean I want to be caught. I don’t purposely make men fall for me, it just happens that way. I’m naturally a charming person to everyone I meet and I love complimenting people. I compliment men, and women. I don’t hate, if a female friend of mine truly looks beautiful in a dress that is aesthetically pleasing, I’m not going to hate on her and say “ugh you should change”. I’ll simply say “wow you look beautiful in that dress girl!”. Everyone can use a good picker upper compliment sometimes, especially with all the added pressure from media and magazines to be flawless.
My point is, I don’t do it on purpose, but that doesn’t mean I should receive attitude for my choices. If a man really cared about me as a person and didn’t want be to be their trophy piece, then they should respect my decision to focus on me. I’m not using this time to become a bitter and selfish black woman, but I’m using it to get my education, become healthier and fit, grow my hair back out, write my book and more books in the near future, and to become the overall best woman that I can be for Mr. Right in the future. None of the men I’ve met, and I’ve met a lot of men, have been what I’m looking for. Their hasn’t been that total spiritual connection, where I feel I need to commit to this person and can’t imagine not talking to them. Most of the men I’ve met have had some of the qualities I’ve sincerely wanted, but may have been to short, too skinny, off into a crazy occult (which I have met guys in occults), or simply have a clingy personality that turns me off.
I can’t stand clingy men. Eww….so gross! There’s this misconception that women are the ones that tend to be clingy…but uh huh, not the case at all! I’ve dated guys who were sweet, but annoyingly needy and clingy. It’s like I get the point, you care about me, but you don’t need to call me eight times a day to find out what I’m doing and say you miss me. A text would be fine, but not ever single hour…can’t stand that! Every woman is different, but I’m a woman who likes some distance. I don’t like long distance relationships much, but I mind distance in communication. It’s gets boring if we text all day long, I lose interest and begin to ignore text messages.
I just re-read the paragraph above, wow I really do enjoy being single. It’s not that I don’t like the idea of love, romance, having a family one day, having someone I see on a daily basis, I’m just not in the mood to have that anytime soon. People tend to bore me quickly, probably developed a short attention span from all the videogames I play. I literally can watch a movie and within the first five minutes, if it’s moving way to slow, I’ll simply say “I’m done. Lets watch something else.” I like to think it comes from my raw edgy East Coast upbringing, or its surely out of pure boredom of overdrawn introductions. Oh well, whatever the case may be…I get bored with guys after awhile. I have too much going on in my life to devote part of my brain to some guy I’ve known for a week and he’s already lurking around me. Don’t need it…don’t want it…nah, I’m good.
Years from now I’ll be sitting in an office at my job as a writer or pr specialist looking at this article. I’ll crack up laughing at my rant on men and make a lunch date with my charming boyfriend who works in DC with a career on the same level or higher as mine. We will have a beautiful lunch and make plans to go to jazz concert later in the evening. It will be a wonderful and magic moment, the spark I’ve been waiting for my entire life. But until that glorious moments comes…I’m good. I’m young, black, educated, single and quite content. I love focusing on me and enjoy the beautiful solitude that I have without the distractions of annoying clingy men that are too short or have a hairy birthmark on their cheek that they keep picking with (that actually happened on a date, so gross…it brushed my cheek when he tried to kiss me goodbye!). So next time someone asks me my thoughts on finding love, a relationship, and an acceptable but not great boyfriend….nah, I’m good….real good.