fun

single gal speaks: adventures in speed dating

Gather round, friends. I got a story for ya.

Picture it- New York, 2012.

It was the Monday of Labor Day weekend when two single gals from Brooklyn decided to take matters of the heart in to their own hands and get out there and try something new.

As we should all know by now, Lisa likes to think of new adventures for us to go on. Sometimes I have a say in our activities and sometimes I just get a phone call that says “So, I bought these tickets”. This was one of those times.

Tickets? Getting tickets to something should be fun! Tickets mean Broadway shows or the movies or plane rides to exotic locations where you can sit poolside with a refreshing drink in your hand. But I digress.

These tickets were not for something fun. These tickets were for my worst nightmare. These tickets were for…

SPEED DATING.

To say I didn’t want to go was a gross understatement. But there I was, getting off the train at Penn Station, waiting for two of Lisa’s co-workers to meet us for a quick drink before we made our way to the torture chamber restaurant. By the time we got there, whatever was in that quick drink must have worked because I was feeling better about what was going on. I wasn’t 100% sold, but I didn’t feel the need to find a hole to fall into anymore.

Before I continue I feel the need to say this – I have/had nothing against speed dating. My feelings of apprehension were totally cause by my insecurities. Not to get too serious or psychological but, I was always seen as “the friend”. I was always nice enough or funny enough to hang out with but anything past that almost seemed like a joke. Basically, after years of being too shy to pursue anyone and after years of feeling like I shouldn’t pursue anyone because they probably wouldn’t be interested anyway, putting myself into a situation like this was a hard pill to swallow. I felt that since I’ve been written off for how I’ve looked before that it was just going to turn into a parade of NOs and I just couldn’t deal with that. I know I have a good personality and an excellent sense of humor and I can carry a conversation, but I also know that I can be very introverted and shy when I’m in a new situation, especially when I’m uncomfortable. I was letting all of my doubts and insecurities and pre-conceived notions get the best of me.

But again, I digress.

We walked in a were led to a long set of tables and were told to make ourselves comfortable on the booth side. The men were then escorted in and sat in the chairs across from each of us. I was seated between Lisa and one of her co-workers. I figured if all else failed, I’d pull one of them into my “date”. We were given pieces of paper to write down the names of our dates, make some notes and rate them on a scale of 1-10. 1 being “I never want to see this person again” and 10 being “what are you doing for the rest of your life?”. The bell rang and we were off.

I don’t remember all of my dates but when they were good, they were really, really good. And by good, I mean bad. Here are some highlights.

Me: So, where are you from?

Him: Guess.

Me: Um, OK. Want to give me a hint?

Him: I’m from the same place Obama’s father is from.

Me: -_- (i actually knew the answer but I didn’t want to look too eager)

Him: It’s in Africa.

Me: Zimbabwe?

Him: No, try again.

Me: Oh, um. Kenya? (told you i knew it)

Him: Yes!

Me: (to myself) Good because my knowledge of African countries was running out.

Him: So, what do you like to do for fun?

Me: (to myself) oh shit. lay on the couch? eat? plan my weddings to my celebrity husbands? oh, God.

Me: Well, I like to explore the city, read, be with family and friends, go to the movies, maybe see a Broadway show. Ummmm… I’ve recently gotten into photography…?

Him: Oh, so you’re boring?

Me: Um. Well, I guess so. *rates him a 1 on my evaluation sheet*

funny story, a few weeks after we went on this adventure, i was talking to someone that i was starting to have a nice size crush on. i was telling him this story and he started to laugh and asked me how i answered the question. i told him and he said “you’re not boring! that’s a hard question to answer and probably not the best to ask in that kind of situation.” then i promptly melted. he’s engaged now so… yea. digressing, yet again.

And now, my personal favorite.

Me: So, is this your first time doing something like this?

Him: No, I come every week.

Me: Oh! Really? Um. Ok.

Him: Yea, they call me when they’re having an event and I show up.

After the final bell rang, we gathered whatever dignity we had left our things and high tailed it out of there. We found ourselves in a diner (that had the best French onion soup ever in life), like real, stereotypical New Yorkers. There were a few guys I tried to make a match with (ok, one), like the photographer from Connecticut, but feelings weren’t mutual I guess. That’s cool.

Would I do it again?: Absolutely! Now that I could go in knowing what to expect and being OK with the possibility of not making a match, I would definitely go again. And really, you just never know who is waiting for you just around the corner. I know Lisa got our tickets on Groupon (or LivingSocial, whichever.) and I’m sure things like this are offered all the time. why pay full price? My suggestion – make sure the place has a bar (but don’t get sloppy drunk – just in case!), grab your girlfriends and have good time!

britney’s got the right idea!

Have you ever gone speed dating? Would you?

Let’s discuss!

TAG: this or that – summer edition!

I wanted to be like the cool kids and write a weekend round-up but I quickly realized that wasn’t going to happen so I found a summer this or that tag on Always, Abby and since we’re heading for a heatwave here, what’s a better time to do it?

Ocean or Pool
POOL. The ocean might be relaxing, but the sand that comes with it, is not. Pools also don’t have sharks or jellyfish, which seem to be running rampant on the East Coast lately.

ocean

Beach Vacation or Wilderness
See, now this is where I contradict myself. I will NOT go camping. EVER. The thought of bugs and mountain lions and peeing in a bush and foraging for food do not appeal to me at all. I like driving through the woods, like if we go up to the Poconos or something but there’s a hotel at the end of that drive and that suits me just fine. That being said, I guess I’d rather be at the beach but there’s that whole sand issue. will i ever be satisfied?

Watermelon or Strawberries
Watermelon – all day, every day

watermelon

Bikini or 1-piece
One piece; more because I think they’re classier looking and less because I’d need to be dead ten years to even think about putting one on.

Lemonade or Iced Tea
Iced tea with ice, please.

Hotdogs…grilled or over a fire
I’ve never had weenies over an open flame so I’m going to go with grilled.

Hat or Sunglasses
Sunglasses, when I remember to wear them

Windows Down or AC all the way
I can’t live without my AC. Actually, I’m OK during the day but at night I need my room to be chilly. And by chilly, I mean arctic.

air-conditioning

Tanning Lotion or Sunscreen
Tanning lotion with some SPF. My favorite, in case you were wondering, is Maui Babe Browning Lotion. It smells like coffee and doesn’t turn you orange. Just slap it on and bake in the sun.

Baseball Game or Concert
Both are fun. Both are opportunities to watch men run around in tight pants, assuming you’re like me and the only (summer) concerts you’ve been to are Backstreet Boys ones.

Ice Cream or Popsicle
Both sound delicious right about now. 

Fireworks or Fireflies
Fireflies because they don’t make me pee my pants, which is a story for a different post.

Flip Flops or Bare Feet
My feet are their happiest when they don’t have shoes on, but what they fail to realize is shoes keep rocks and pieces of glass from embedding themselves in to them. 

Water Balloons or Squirt Guns
I remember being in camp with my cousins, filling up water balloons at the water fountain next to the smelly park bathroom. I could never tie them so I’m not sure why I always filled them. I also remember begging my parents for a Super Soaker, which I believe is still in my garage somewhere.

And there you have it. Definitely not a weekend wrap up but at least it’s something. If you want to do this tag, feel free!

Talk to you soon!

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Broadway or bust

Call me stereotypical but I am a big Disney fan.

Fun Fact: I can recite The Little Mermaid word for word – proudly, might I add. 

Except for Mary Poppins I’ve seen all of the shows Disney has put on Broadway. All of them magical and unforgettable in their own way. Saturday night my cousins and I went to see Aladdin and OH. MY. GOD. WHAT. A. SHOW.

We started out at Casa Nonna for dinner (great food – totally recommend the eggplant parmigiana, the fried calamari, and the fries potato croquettes with the garlic aioli) and then headed off for the theater. As our luck would have it, it started to pour after we took not three steps out of the restaurant. Of course. So we hoofed it the three-ish blocks. In the rain. Through the crowds. On a strict timeline.

BEEP. BEEP 

We finally get to the theater and have our tickets checked. The show was at The New Amsterdam Theater which was completely restored by Disney and it was beautiful. We were running short on time but if you get a chance to go to see this show, get there a little early to experience the beauty of it. We get to our seats and it’s no surprise that there is almost no leg room. I never understood how all of these theaters are being redone and no one thinks to take out maybe one row of seats to make just a little more room. Also, the theater is in an odd spot, stuck between Madame Tussauds and McDonalds on 42nd Street. When in New York, I guess Moving on…

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the excitement is mounting

 Please turn off your cellphones or any other electronic devices. Also, please remember that the taking of photos or videos is strictly prohibited.

SHOWTIME!

To say this show hit the ground running is an understatement.  It was non-stop from Arabian Nights all the way to the cherry on the top of the first half’s sundae, Friend Like Me.  I mean, there were fireworks. Fireworks – real, fake, who cares? They were magical. Also, there were streamers. Nice touch, Prince Ali. The sets were beautiful. Everything was covered in glitter, sequins, rhinestones – if it sparkled or shined, it was on the stage. I wanted to live in Agrabah because as we all know, glitter is my favorite color.

Let me just quickly note that some of the story line/characters were changed to make it work for the Broadway stage. Understandably, the animal friends that we all know and love were absent from the live action performance. Raja was totally eliminated. It was a bit of a let down because Abu was swapped out for Aladdin’s posse of thieves, who can be found in the original version of the story, so it made it difficult to miss him too much. The only way they could have gotten a better human replacement for Iago was if they brought in Gilbert Godfried to reprise his role. On a related note, they did get Jonathan Freeman to reprise his role as Jafar. Surreal. He didn’t even break character for his curtain call.

The man who plays the Genie is up for a Tony award and let me tell you if he doesn’t win it, there is no justice in this world. He was AMAZING. He stole every scene he was in (and everyone was after Aladdin for stealing a loaf of bread – go figure). I wish I had half of his energy, stamina and talent.

intermission- time to pick our jaws up off the floor.

intermission- time to pick our jaws up off the floor.

After intermission, Aladdin and Jasmine hopped aboard their magic carpet and flew to A Whole New World. Now, personally I did not see any wires holding up the carpet. My cousins will disagree with me but hello, MAGIC carpet. just saying.

Unfortunately, all good things must come to an end.  The curtain fell and the lights came on so it was time to go. We fought the crowds and finally got outside. We were so excited that it wasn’t raining! The words “It’s a beautiful night!” didn’t even get out of my cousin Desiree’s mouth when it started to pour. Thanks, Dez. I had to restrain myself from screaming “MAKE WAY FOR PRINCE ALI”. Ok, fine I might have mumbled it a couple of times. Mumble meaning said out loud in a not so quiet voice.

Saturday will go down as one of the best cousin nights we’ve had in a long time. The show was unforgettable. The laughs were unstoppable and the memories were unreplaceable. (I was going for a theme here – deal with it.)

Speaking of those unreplaceable memories, when we were stuck in 9th Ave traffic, Desiree decided she wanted a little sweet. We found a Dunkin Donuts that had the audacity to be closed. how rude! Fortunately, we pulled up next to a waffle truck. Before we knew it, Desi was half out the window trying to score some waffles. God, I wish I got it on video. The driver was able to give her one of those loyalty cards through the window. This must have satisfied Dez because the next thing we heard was “WAFFLE OUT!”, she came back into the car and rolled up the window with a huge smile on her face. WHY DIDN’T I GET IT ON VIDEO??

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