Tag Archives: dating

Cupid can wait.

A friend of mine posted the photo below the other day with the caption “Seriously?” and the hashtags #toosoon and #valentinesday.

Seriously? #toosoon #valentinesday

A post shared by Peggy Shanks (@julep67) on


I have to say I agree. The holidays have been encroaching on each other for years now, particularly Christmas. Back in the days of yore (meaning when I was a kid), the Christmas season didn’t officially start until Santa made his appearance at the end of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. These days Christmas decorations appear alongside Halloween candy in drugstores, and I’ve seen Christmas displays in retail outlets as early as August. North America barely finishes paying off the previous Christmas when the next one appears on the horizon.

Now we have Valentine’s Day encroaching on New Year’s Day. I started seeing Valentine candy the day after Christmas. This simultaneously bewilders and annoys me. First, how on earth can anyone keep chocolate around the house for six weeks without eating it? Are they not human? Do they not bleed?

GET in mah BELLEH! (Image: Public domain)

GET in mah BELLEH! (Image: Public domain)

Second, it feeds into what I call the Holidates Phenomenon, wherein single people feel they simply must have a partner to share the holidays with, as evidenced by a crunch in online dating sites between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Eve, followed immediately by another surge right after New Year’s Day.

Call me an ice queen, but I don’t partake. I don’t do online dating regardless, but I also wouldn’t start dating someone I met in the wild during the holidays, either. Although it could be considered romantic to meet someone at that time of year, I’d wonder how much of the romance was based on genuine affection and how much of it was loneliness-avoidance owing to pressure from society, including the constant barrage from the retail sector about “gifts for that special someone.” It seems we move right from mistletoe to roses, without a break from pressure to pair off. Thing is, if I’ve seen it once, I’ve seen it 100 times where people get together during the holidays and then break up in early March, so my policy is to just say no between November 1 and February 15.

I much prefer this spin on the tradition.

I much prefer this spin on the tradition. (Image: It’s around.)

At the risk of sounding bitter or rancorous, I haven’t been into Valentine’s Day for at least 25 years, anyway. I think I was 19 the last time it truly thrilled me. Even when I was married or in a relationship, it just seemed to be a manufactured holiday, something to fill the gap between Christmas and Easter. At the very worst, it’s an opportunity for florists and restaurants to price-gouge, and what you get for your money is often lower in quality than what you would have gotten the week before or the week after. I think it’s much better to celebrate personally meaningful dates, like an anniversary or a birthday, and more fun to share an experience together, like going away for a weekend.

So don’t mind me while I sit this one out. You’ll find me in the chocolate aisle the day after Valentine’s. Everything tastes better on clearance.

Don’t I know you?

Today’s Holidailies luck of the click: Meeting people in cyberspace.

I take this to mean either meeting your cyberbuddies in the flesh or running into people in cyberspace you already know in person. I’ve done both, and while the former is wonderful and I’ve made some very dear “real-life” friends that way, the latter can be downright hilarious, especially when karma is involved.

Take Ken, for instance. I worked for Ken in a consulting firm that handled publications for small trade associations. He pulled a huge bait-and-switch in that his expectations and demands were about 50 times more intense and burdensome than he let on in the interview.

Those who have ever worked in publishing of any kind will nod their heads in agreement when I say that it’s just a wee bit much to expect an editor to edit, lay out, write columns, solicit articles, sell advertising space, and handle circulation all for the same publication. No-no, we have word people, we have graphic people, we have ad people, and we have circulation people. Word people and graphic people often work together, and word people are wise to know the programs the graphic people use in case they have to go into a layout and tweak a typo or something at the last minute. But by and large, those are four different aspects of publishing, something I knew at the ripe old age of 28, having spent four years and a lot of money to learn. Ken seemed to know this, too, and went on about how this person at the firm handled layout and the other person handled ads, and everyone just kind of pitched in and updated the system when subscribers changed their addresses, etc.

Well, in my first two weeks there, he expected me to do all of that for not one, but two 48-page publications. But wait, there’s more! The first weekend on the job I had to fly to a conference to man the registration booth with other staff members. That sucked up Friday through Monday, and of course no one took a day off when we came back, so my first week on the job lasted 12 days.

The following Monday, Ken requested to see the completed layouts.

Of course I had not completed them.

And Ken was displeased.

In fact, Ken was so displeased that I still hadn’t pulled both of these publications out of my arse by the end of my third week that he fired me.

Fast forward eleven years and one divorce later. Newly single, I had no idea where or how to start dating again, so I signed up for a little service you may have heard of, Match.com.

You know where this is going.

Ken winked.

Ken wrote.

Ken wrote again.

Oh, my profile was just lovely. I was witty. I was intelligent. I was attractive and vivacious, and we had many, many interests and hobbies in common. “Would a woman such as yourself consider meeting for a drink?”

Why, no. No, a woman such as I would not consider meeting for a drink. A woman such as I wound up temping for six months and maxing out her credit cards to pay her rent after a man such as he let it be known that he didn’t know his butt from his elbow when it came to publishing and fired a woman such as I, and therefore if a man such as he spontaneously burst into flames and no one else was around but we two, a woman such as I wouldn’t pee on a man such as he to put it out.

Write, proofread, and…


Ah, that felt good. (Image: No idea. It’s around.)

Odd, but on Match I ran into a few guys I had previously met in real life and didn’t like. One was a former coworker of my ex-husband’s. “Wait, aren’t you that jerk who made that awful crack about Mexican women at [colleague of his and my ex-hub]’s party when you saw that [colleague’s wife] was Mexican? Something about green cards and being elevated from cleaning lady to full-time servant?”

Another was someone I had a disaster date with in college, the kind of guy who thinks you’re supposed to sleep with him if he buys you dinner.

Needless to say, I wasn’t on Match for very long. That was right around the time MySpace started taking off, and I figured if I was going to fend off jerks through my computer, I could do that on there instead, for free—but that’s something for another entry.