BREAKING (INTO) THE (RADIO) WAVES
The following *essay* may or may not run on Monday (V.D.). Whether it does or not I *went downtown* and *recorded the thing* on Tuesday...and I wasn't as wooden as usual (or so I thought). I brought Pazckis ("patch-key," kind of like the dead Chicago artist), a traditional Polish Fat Tuesday jelly donut which originally came in rasberry and is now available in myriad modern flavas such as cappuccino, and which can be purchased one day each year at Dinkel's (www.dinkels.com -- family-owned since 1922). That's where we met Lois K. and Sunny Rae for perhaps our final rendezvous before their move to LA. More on Pazckis here: http://www.mariposamarket.ca/
In any case it seems as if this thing is just mundane and accesible enough for public radio.
Last summer’s nasty breakup had me a seeing two therapists. I lost two pants sizes, and vowed never to date again.
But a few months later I was looking good and feeling better, and my friends said it was time to start .
Since meeting men by chance had never worked out, I signed up for an online service and created a smart-alecky profile that would separate the men from the boys.
My first set of matches proved there was indeed life after the Ex…. If you like men with kids who want to date 20-year olds. I also pulled up someone I had gone on a date with a decade ago, and who had smelled like a barnyard.
My first face-to-face date was with a handsome, vegetarian MBA. Over lattes I kept looking at him and thinking, "You’re not X. Your nose is different from X’s. You’re more articulate than X. But you say just as many stupid things." Which would have been OK. But then it turned out he didn’t have a job and rarely left his house. We called it quits after just two dates.
Next was a third-grade teacher who was as tall as his ad had promised – most men add two inches. During our only date I learned that he caught every cold his students did, and hated his life even more than I hated mine. At least he paid for dinner.
The Serbian hiphop guy gave great e-mail. But we could barely speak with one another in person, what with his accent and my habit of speed-talking from thought to thought. I did glean that under Marshal Tito, people could travel outside of Yugoslavia, and many drove to Italy to go shopping. I also learned that he was even more negative and judgmental than I am, and after seeing a movie we never spoke again.
The physician who didn’t hate his ex-wife seemed like a good prospect -- despite posting a picture of himself in shorts. During coffee I learned how to get free treatment at Cook County Hospital. I also learned that I know his ex wife -- and like her a lot. We never spoke again, either.
I thought twice before contacting an Iraq war vet, but...WELL... his profile was as skewed as mine. Plus he could spell. After some exceptional e-mails and phone we decided to meet at Millennium Park at sunset. He was late and sported A LOT of facial hair. But he was a gentleman – not to mention an officer -- and shared my unpopular views about Meigs Field and corporate sponsorship of public places. We walked on the BP Bridge in the freezing cold and made each other laugh.
On our second date we talked about concrete and flashbacks, and on the third we saw a Who cover band.
On the fourth date we went cross country skiing AND ice skating – which we both do very badly. I also learned that facial hair isn’t so scary after all.
I haven’t thought about X since.