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Courtship, shmortship.

Everyone’s been sharing, posting, tweeting, and talking about this article in the New York Times speaking to the end of courtship. I don’t know if this is such colossal news, but I found it to be quite depressing nonetheless. I enjoyed it like one might enjoy watching a train wreck or perhaps how individuals used to view men being mauled by lions as entertainment.  Read here or check out my brief synopsis below.
The article essentially outlines modern dating. Today, couples meet via the web, meet up in larger groups, and primarily communicate via text. It discussed how traditional “courtship” no longer takes place. Meaning men do not court women by taking them out to dinner or even drinks for that matter.  One of the reasons this could be the case, the article surmises is based on the decline of men’s careers as women become more financially successful. Meh- none of this really shocks or bothers me. What really gets my goat is the negative association surrounding men in general in the present day.
Dating is one of my all time favorite topics, however I realized of late that as much as I relish the details of each of my girlfriends’ new flames and first dates, it seems that ultimately more time is spent on the let down, the realization he isn’t “the one”,  provides. I will admit there are many times when my girlfriends, acquaintances, and even I (shockingly) over invest in casual dating scenarios and ultimately believe it to have the potential to be more than it ever could. Women tend to be dreamers, however what I have come to realize is there is a good chunk of time when men truly are just jerks. 
They say what they think you want to hear, they lie, they tell you every thought from every crevice of their mind, you hold them, you comfort them, advise them, apparently pay for their dinner, only to be told you are expecting too much from them or alternatively never hear from them again.  And there you are just thinking you were getting to know someone, utterly confused about what your expectations ever were to begin with. So anyway boo hoo, courtship is dead and seemingly all age appropriate men are truly either gay, married, or crazy. Despite all of this, I don’t know if I fully believe that.
Not to get all self help book, but I think maybe courtship or love for that matter is just rare and not dead after all. Maybe it’s that all of this nonsense and confusion just makes it clearer when true love is knocking on your door. Or maybe it just makes it easier to determine when you should call your friends and buy a big plot of land in the country and start a commune. I can go either way on this. But I will say this. Men. Be clear and stop blaming everything on women. You dudes love talking about your feelings way more than any female I know and it’s confusing. Women. Let’s try to stop making something out of nothing and try to be a little more realistic with our expectations. And let’s all make a concerted effort to be nicer to each other.

Real resolution.

Well 2013, the holidays are over and I’ve had some time to reflect. One of the many traits I shared with my mom is our love for the holidays. She was the true spirit of any family gathering. She was always the first to raise a glass, prematurely present a gift, or send a card for any occasion large or small.  This was one of the most amazing things about her, she pretty much continually was thinking of ways to give to other people. I have boxes of notes she’d send me throughout college, Valentines, St. Patty’s day cards, Christmas, New Years, President’s Day, Happy Monday. Whatever the occasion, the woman knew how to celebrate.
So this holiday, as were the past two, was bitter sweet. A major guest/host was missing. There was a giant hole from which joy once emanated. I missed her in her red dress, which housed a favored pocket made sock puppet named Delmore. I missed her forcing our entire family, even those less verbose than herself, to give thanks for what gifts we had been given over the year. I missed her company in the kitchen, guiding me on what to chop or plate.
I missed her prodding me for information on my social life, my dating life, and gossip amongst my friends, as we would prepare the holiday meal. I missed her telling me she had cut back on the holiday menu, only to discover one dish out of twenty had been eliminated. (And then most likely added back on at the last minute in a faux panic). So for the third year I felt sad again this holiday season, versus the joy I used to feel over Christmases past. At the promise of a gingerbread house, flurry of wrapping paper, and the potential for carols. I was left in a state of confusion, uncertainty, and although much reflection and honoring was dedicated to my mom, a feeling of enormous loss. 
The only thing I know is that she is in a place where there is only the best champagne and foie gras all day long. Where she can listen to all of her favorite songs and be surrounded only by those that make her laugh.  I also know if she were here she would tell me to stop wallowing. She would most likely tell me to live my life and find my passion and dedicate myself to it fully. I hope that in the year to come I can follow her wise words even without her here to reinforce them. I hope that I can continue to represent all of the values she instilled. And I hope I can celebrate the joys of life with the vigor she once did.   Once again this one is for you woman, wishing you the best of everything there is and missing you every second. I love you always and forever. 

New Year, New Me

Every year, like most of the universe, I go about the resolution making process. I plot, diagram, meditate, and map out how I am going to get in shape, be nicer, more successful, and better in every way.
This year I am taking a different approach. By default, 2013 will be better than 2012. So I have that going for me.  Point for Marissa.  Beyond that, I am keeping it simple. I have one resolution and it is to go with my gut. The fact of the matter is I am pretty much always aware when I am doing something I shouldn’t; yet I continue to do it.
I know that ultimately one (or 4) of the 5 times I go to happy hour a week, I should probably go to the gym. Yet I continually choose happy hour and stay there until “I’ve done something wrong” feeling goes away, most often by continuing to indulge in the something wrong.
So that is it, henceforth I shall trust my gut, which will hopefully get smaller with said trust. The desired outcome is that I will say yes to productive activities and say no to excessive happy hours, overconsumption, men that are anything less than wonderful. As my mom used to say to me as a wee lass “Make good choices.” It’s as simple as that. Come on 2013. Meet me halfway?