Business Ethics

 

business-1753098_1280If you’ve been around the OL dating game at all you’ll probably start to notice all the complex relationship statuses. The shit labeled like it is straight out of a math book, with poly- and mono, and all the three letter acronyms. One that always cracks me up is

“Ethical Non-monogamy”.

It’s not polygamy, which any idiot can deduce from the non part of the monogamy section.

It’s ethical dammit! These people make it sound like Mormons don’t have any ethics to them.

Adding the word ethical is what makes me scratch my head at the entire identifying statement.

Why does the person identifying with the label need it to be “ethical”?

If I walk down to a bar at 10 am on a Sunday and order a beer, I don’t say I’m an ethical alcoholic. Oh no, ethics has nothing to do with it. Nor do I give a fuck what anyone thinks about it. Moscow mules taste just as good in the am as they do in the pm.

But this Segways into a bigger picture to why the word is added for the person. It softens the phrase by giving their brain a positive idea to latch on.

Personally it makes me think that on some level they think what they’re doing is wrong. Whether or not they are conscious of that idea is irrelevant, but it’s stands out like a 70 year old European in a banana hammock.

When you truly are indifferent about something you just put it out there and let the other person deal with it. It’s like handing someone a blank canvas with a color palette.

But a throwing out a leading phrase like that is like handing someone a coloring book. You can use any color you want, but it’s still obvious what the picture is.

On a subtle level, it clues me into how the person thinks about this particular concept. We all generally accept various connotations of words.

But in reality is nothing is black and white, just grey. Our brains place shit in categories for us to help digest these bigger complex ideas. This is how the human race has evolved.

The thing is, when you take a stance on a widely accepted issue, you’re going to get scrutinized.

It’s instinct to want to push down the nail that sticks up above the rest. It is, what it is.

So at the end of the day,

that is what bothers me the most about the “ethical non-monogamers”.

I don’t give a fuck about how many people you are in a relationship with.

I just want you to leave the ethics for your Social Studies class,

and be proud of who you are.

Riddle Me This

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Her profile reads:

Paul’s height is six feet, he’s an assistant at a butcher’s shop, and wears size 11 shoes. What does he weigh?

There’s multiple levels to a good riddle.

99.9% of the time the answer is always in the question. But the smartest thing you can do is keep your eye on the big picture.

Two are measurements, one is an occupation, and the question is a measurement.

Add in the fact that it’s a riddle, and you can start to see why one phrase sicks out above the rest.

Also why the other three have to match.

Misdirection.

It’s a great tool that helps bring novelty to the familiar, but this post ain’t about relationships. It’s about a bio.

Now I’ve read a shit ton of profiles, but ones like this really stand out to me. Most are generic, not because people don’t like to talk about themselves, but because most people don’t give themselves permission to be themselves around strangers. The ironic thing is, the finger prints of your personality is all over everything you do.

What you write,

or what you don’t write,

What you wear,

What’s in the background of your picture

These things speak in volumes.

And much like the answer to the riddle, they aren’t on the surface.

Which is why this sparks my curiosity.

So why a riddle? Why this one? When did she hear it? Does it mean anything to her?

Now I’m not retarded. The odds of the stars aligning, us meeting up, her looking remotely like her pictures, so I can even get the faintest opportunity to see if she’s the person she claims to be is fucking terrible.

It’s the never ending Zeno’s paradox of online dating.

But I guess those minuscule odds is why I like to play the game.

I type:

Paul weighs meat. Who doesn’t love a good riddle?

Tinder Date #137: A Review

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Today at noon, I received a message from her about an argument we had the night before. It said something about the Mexican refugee camps and how the kids born in this country aren’t citizens. It was one of the first conversations we had and I wanted to leave right then.

It wasn’t about what she was saying. Truth of the matter is, I could give a flying fuck in the night about her stance on political issues. But it was something about how she was saying these statements. Each one was connected to another idea with no supporting structure, like a tangled mess of cords in the bottom of your suitcase. I snacked on kung pow chicken as I listened further.

“Look people don’t believe me, but I know. I’ve lived in 14 countries and can speak several different languages. I use to live with a rich Jewish family that had connections. Like they told me Obama was going to be president back in the 90’s. Like I knew then!”

I took a sip of my Moscow Mule. This girl fully believed every syllable she was saying. It reminded me of a group of 70’s year olds sipping coffee at 6 am in a Greek Restaurant and talking about the Illuminati.

“I believe you. I’ve heard some of these¬†conspiracy theories before.

“THESE ARE NOT CONSPIRACY THEORIES! I HATE WHEN PEOPLE SAY THESE THAT!”

I smiled and ordered another drink.

Things actually calmed down after that and we started talking about cities in Michigan. Then moving out of mitten.

She mentioned that she always had to keep moving to the next thing. It’s why she traveled so much. It’s why she had these crazy lifestyle stories. Like living on the streets in London, or stealing a passport from an Irish drug kingpin and leaving it in a taxi.

After she told me that, I knew exactly who she was. I think that is the reason why I wanted to leave. A lot of people I’ve met who travel have this calmness to them that’s hard to put into words. I like to think it’s the things they’ve experienced coming through their actions. But I think it only happens when you reflect and compare which is hard to do when you’re chasing the next thing.

Her stories were like a season of Weeds or Orange is the New Black (Yes I know, same writer). Lots of self induced shit, piled on with more self induced shit. I mean the reason she’s in Chicago in the first place is because she is traveling back home to Michigan and decided to not get on the last bus. All I kept thinking about is what is this girl running from? Do I really want to find out and get tangled in all that?

I sure as fuck didn’t but I’m always game for an adventure and a good story. So I stuck around.

#

Later today, at 5:00pm a few more messages came in from her. All this is really strange considering she still has my number. It’s never good when someone jumps back a level of communication.

They read:

“What’s it like being gay and dating women? Like I’m just curious?”

Hahaha

She was cute. Definitely one of the better looking girls I’ve met off Tinder. She was throwing the cat at me all night. But I wasn’t interested and ended up going home alone. My mind kept running with the last handful of shitty one night stands where I felt like an ass hat.

Hank Moody would say “A morning of awkwardness is better than a night of loneliness.” That fucker doesn’t know what he is talking about. There are worst things than being alone, but it often takes a while to figure that out. I’d rather be alone than with someone I can’t seem to find anything beautiful about. It feels too much like settling.

I had my first one night stand when I was 18. I was at my buddy house and I didn’t catch her name. It was like a badge of honor. Friends cheered me on. But 10 years later, things are different. I don’t care what anyone thinks of me and most of the one night stands go one of two ways.

Sometimes they’re like a cherry on top of a gorgeous night where two people meet randomly, click on different levels, and have an adventure around the city. Those ones stick with me forever.

But the ones I have off this app are closer to the other kind. Their all business, like the red light district in Amsterdam. Two humans borrowing each other to masturbate with because they have this emotional urge inside of them. I use to be okay with that, but lately it’s been feeling less like free will.

Dating use to be fun, why does it suck now?

#

In summary,

Don’t use the phrase “Conspiracy Theories” ever.

Cute girls aren’t use to getting rejected by their personalities.

Always follow the golden rule: “Never bump uglies with crazy” even if that means you get called gay.

Tinder sucks.

And I feel like an alien for preferring some type of deep connection with a few people as apposed to just skimming the surface with hundreds of people.

2 out of 10, would not date again.

Drunken Photo Shoots

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*Click *Click*Click

The shutter on the Nikon went off as the back patio of the bar. The flash poured on the two while the rest of the group was oblivious around them.

“Just one more, this time a little closer together,” the camera woman said. She was excited to use her camera on someone other than her husband and dog for a change– a statement she made many times throughout the night.

The redhead grabbed me closer while I pretended this was the Royal Wedding shoot. I stared at her and made jokes that I looked like blonde Prince Henry with less hair.

“So you’re prince William?”

I glared at her and moved her chin.

“Stop moving my face.” she said through her grin.

“Stop trying to pose! We need to make this authentic for the readers of Teen People.” I said.

She looked down and laughed into my chest. The camera girl worked ferociously.

“Oh my god you guys! this is too cute! I’m feeling something here between you two!”

I knew just what she meant. I felt it too. I felt it the first time I walked into their party that afternoon and greeted my friend’s redheaded sister. The last time I saw her she was drunk and asking about this girl I was seeing. That was five years ago. She had outgrown her parent’s divorce issues, or so I thought.

It’s always a weird feeling when someone likes you. Your gut takes a hold of you, knowing you have this power over someone. In the past, it gave me a rush and I’d want to reciprocate. Now it happens more often, and it makes me wonder. Is this a curse? What do I want? When am I going to feel this way about someone else?

*Click*Click*Click

The redhead looked back up in my eyes. I knew that look, but ignored it. We posed in more ridiculous ways, ending on a vogue. The Camera girl and the redhead consulted among the pictures. I excused myself and went to the bathroom.

“Hurry back!” the redhead yelled.

“Ya! Hurry! You have to see these pictures! They’re soooo cute!” The camera girl said.

I walked into the bar, past the rows of empty stools. Typical for a Sunday night. The bathroom was dimly lit, yet I still make out my face in between the rust spots in the mirror. I splashed cold water on my face and took a deep breath.

Fuck.

 

Everybody Wants to Rule the World

 

I was six beers deep on that Sunday, a common site after my break up. I’d get off my short morning shift at the restaurant, and drink until my head stopped pounding from the night before. The process was simple, just one bud light at a time. The amount it took never mattered since I road a twelve speed Schwinn everywhere.

The new server worked that morning too. She was recently divorced with two boys. I pegged her age at 46 -double mine at the time- but I never clarified with her. She got the job as a waitress after the separation. Before that she was a stay at home mom, so it’s only fitting that she fell into this industry. On that morning, she told me her husband got the seven year itch, which was term I never heard before. That’s why she got short when I asked what it meant.

The Cubs got their ass kicked by Cincinnati that day. I’ll never forget because she wore a Reds T-shirt instead of her uniform. She sat down after her shift and pretended to ask the score. Even though I was already four beers deep, I resisted the urge to punch her in the tits.

She was very handsy, and always had to touch you when she spoke. You know, a hand on the back for a secret, or an arm grab when she got excited about something. Everyone hated it, except me. I think, I just enjoyed anyone who enjoyed me. But that’s typical during a break up.

After her first drink, she told me she had to pick up her kids. She also said that she had plans with her new boyfriend, a tall, dark, and handsome type with a motorcycle. Yet she still ordered another Vodka Sprite. And another after that one. It’s funny how quick plans change when drinks and good conversation is involved.

On the 8th inning, we stopped watching the massacre and quizzed each other over the bar music. I was good. Within the first guitar riff, I knew the answer. She didn’t stand a chance until I finally got stumped. It was that one famous 80’s song, I know you’ve heard it before. It says something about mother nature and ruling the world. I couldn’t think of the name, but I knew the song because my Ex played it all the time.

Anyways, she was shocked that I couldn’t answer, and punched me in the arm. I smacked my bud light and it flew into the air. The bottle shattered against the mirror behind the bar. I don’t remember who the bartender was but she kicked us out right after. Some bullshit right? I mean, we made a mistake sure, but we worked there. I made a joke that I’d been kicked out of nicer shit holes than this. She grabbed my arm and walked out.

We stood by the side of the building and I lit up a cigarette. I’m not sure if she smoked but she accepted it when I passed it over. She took a drag and started talking about her new Boyfriend. She said he was great, and told me she liked him, but paused. I blew out smoke and she went on.

“I don’t know, I just don’t think I’m ready yet.” She said.

“Ready for what?” I said.

“You know. He just gives me this look, like he knows his future or something. And, I don’t know, I guess I’m somehow apart of it.” She said.

“Sounds kind of heavy” I said.

“It is. But at the same time, it’s not. I know none of that make sense but maybe you’ll understand when you get older.” She said.

“Nope, I’m staying 23 forever.” I said, smiling before I continued.

“But I get it. You just had your plan just get rocked by life. Sounds like you kind of want to hang out a bit. Maybe just take it slow, smell the roses, get lost in an adventure of the day. Have a drink with a cook and get your ass kicked in song trivia.” I said.

“You didn’t even know that last song.” She said.

I was going to take the joke further but she kissed me. I didn’t see it coming. I was so drunk I don’t think I close my eyes. I was going to ask if she wanted to get another drink but there was an interruption.

A guy pulled up in a Suburban and started yelling. He ran out and left his door open. He was a shorter guy, about my height and he just kept screaming at her. She tried to play it off like she had to stay late, but her words slurred at every vowel. I couldn’t tell you what was said, but I remembered him pointing to the two boys in the back of the SUV. Tears rolled down her face and she ran to her car. The guy flipped me off as he got into the Suburban and drove off.

I took a step back until I hit the building. My back slid down the wood until I hit my ass on the cement. I dug in my pocket until I found another Camel. I sat there quiet and kept my eyes down on the white parking lot.

The next day she put her notice in, but it wasn’t until a few weeks later that I saw her again. She popped in on a Sunday for her last check. I was at the end of the bar, nursing a Bud Light by myself. I said hello, but the conversation didn’t go far. She has a motorcycle helmet in her hand and said her fiance was waiting outside.

She left and I ordered another Bud Light. I looked in the cracked mirror behind the bar and gave myself a toast.

She was finally ready.

The First Time I got Laid as a Writer…

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The first time I got laid as a writer, she smiled when I asked to smoke outside. I don’t think she heard me over the bar chatter. She just saw me leave into the patio and came with. I lit a Newport in-between October wind gusts while she filled the silence.

“So what have you been writing about?” she asked.

“Well, I applied for a non-paid writers position at a satire magazine on campus a few weeks ago. My friend told me about it. She gave me her editor’s contact and told me to send a sample of my work. Right now, I’m managing/designing a protection scheme for the school’s solar car. It’s my senior project, one of the most difficult Senior Engineering projects in the school’s history. Between that, not missing a game of the Cubs historic 2015 playoff run, and getting yelled at by my restaurant manager who hasn’t been laid in 20 years, I found time to write the sample,” I said.

The cherry on my menthol lit up my face as I took a quick break from my speech. I exhaled and continued.

“I showed it to every one I knew. I mean EVERYONE. My roommate, my lab partners, my fellow engineering nerds, my friend that worked at the magazine, the girl I had a crush on at work, the girl I had a crush on in my History class, and etc. I got a lot of notes. Some I implemented, some I didn’t. I re-wrote the damn thing four times. Waited to the last minute to send it over,” I said.

“Wow” she said. A piece of grey ash smeared on her blue dress. “So what happened?” she asked.

“Well, days went by. I’d check my email but nothing. I’d hear a ding on my phone, only to read flights from Chicago for only 79.00! Orbits bastards. I got asked by everyone that helped me if I heard anything yet, but I had to give them the same lame answer.

Then a week and a half later, I saw an email from an address I didn’t recognize. I quickly pulled it up and read it.

Dear Darby,

Although your piece was entertaining, we don’t feel you’re a good fit here.

Take care

“Oh I’m sorry to hear that,” she said, ” I know writing can be tough thing to get into.”

The wind from the maple leaves rustled and almost blew out my half smoked cancer stick. We took a couple steps back behind a side of the bar.

“You’re not kidding, I ran into my friend who works there. I asked her what the editor thought about it. Now we’d been friends for a while, but she didn’t come clean with me until later in the conversation. Apparently, they spent the first 20 minutes of their meeting talking shit about it. The word choices, the grammatical errors, the sad attempt to be funny. I became a running joke, ” I said.

“Oh my god!” she said. “Did they really?”

I slammed my butt on the ground and looked at her brown eyes. My head slightly nodded.

“Yea they did. I guess one guy kept calling me a no talent ass clown. He even got up and drew a picture of his interpretation of said ass clown. He scribbled the face with red marker and the hair with green. She took a picture and showed me.” I said.

“Wow,” she said. She swayed back and worth trying to keep warm from the chill fall weather.

“Yea I was pretty hurt but what can I do? I just need to get better. You know, work a little harder. I decided to open up a shitty blog. I’m also reading articles about the craft and asking questions daily on a forum.

So as of right now, that’s what I’ve working on,” I said.

She looked back at my wide eyes. Her words hesitated to exit but I already knew what she was going to say.

“Do you still have the piece? Like, do you mind if I read it?” she asked

“Not at all,” I said.

I grabbed her hand and we walked two blocks to my apartment.

If Tinder Profiles Were More Than 500 Characters: Pt. 2

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Part 1

-I don’t want you to come straight over to my apartment to watch Netflix

-I don’t want to send you $5 on Venmo for naked Snapchat pictures

-I want to meet at a coffee shop or bar

-I want you to get upset at me for being late because I thought we were meeting at a different spot down the street

-I want to hear about your day over glasses clinking and the faint murmur of 90’s alternative music

-I want to interrupt with various jokes that show off your perfect snorty laugh

-I want to hear about your superstition with ghosts and how you once saw a figure in black when you worked at the Old Adolphus Hotel

-I want to whisk you out of the bar and wonder around the city looking for other haunted buildings

-As we walk, I want to tell you how much I love to write, despite the amount of times I’ve been told my writing sucks

-I want to hear the passion that gets your blood pumping

-I want to finally find a dark building and make up a story why one light is still on

-I want to get so lost in our conversation I miss the last train home

-I don’t want to get super “handsy” when we stand behind your car, just bask in the tension of our eyes lingering during a pregnant pause

-I want you to say awkward things because your happily uncomfortable in the moment

-I want to interrupt by pulling you in for a kiss and breaking it off before you reach to bite my lower lip

-I want to say good night and walk an hour back home, past our haunted building, thinking about how excited I am to see you again

If you can’t handle any of that please swipe left