January 7, 2018

Men have forgotten how to date. It’s actually quite simple.

Men have forgotten how to date.

Two years ago, I thought I’d never have to date again. I was in love, it was easy, and it was right. We were planning our future together.

And then he died suddenly in a motorcycle accident on July 2, 2016.

I went on a wonderful date this weekend. We have friends in common, shared interests, and an obvious physical attraction to each other. He was a little distant at first. I couldn’t tell if he was nervous or what, so after the show, and after a quick bite & a cocktail, I asked if he wanted to walk from North Beach up to Coit Tower. He immediately loosened up, and we started connecting. And kissing. It was fun. He just needed to get into his body and out of his head. It’s why I like hiking with friends, too. It’s better connection time than dinner.

It’s now two nights later. I’ve heard nothing from the guy. After our date, we went to our separate homes and texted for another hour or so. I know I’ll hear from him again, I just don’t understand the crickets.

It’s hard to date. Okay, it sucks. I’ve had to actually say out loud that a requirement to dating me is that you have to ask me out on a date. Lots of guys show interest, but can’t say “Would you like to have dinner with me?” It’s shocking how hard this is. And I won’t do it for them.

So now I’ve found a great guy who can not only ask me out but plan a fun night and treat me well. He opened the door for me. He bought the tickets (then we shared dinner and I bought the drinks). It was clear he was happy with the kisses and didn’t expect anything more. He even waited till five minutes after I called my Lyft to call his.

He lives in anther state and went home the next day. And he has not said a word to me since our 4am texts!

Here’s what I would like; what I would do if I were the guy (I’d make a great boyfriend/date, but then that’s because I know what women want): text me to let me know you had a great time and are looking forward to seeing me again. Then wait till you are coming back to town and, with three days notice, ask me out.

Without that initial follow up, I start to think he isn’t interested. And with today’s ease of meeting people to date online, I’ve got just as many options as he does. Should he skip the follow up, I may think he’s not that interested and not reply to a date request in a few weeks. Because why waste my time if he’s not that into me?

The formula for the first date is pretty simple:

1. Ask her out. Make a plan!

2. Be polite, ask her questions about her life, show interest. Don’t expect more than yummy kisses.

3. Follow up within 24 hours with a brief message that you had a great time and are looking forward to the seeing her again.

4. Ask her out again three days before the date you want to see her.

5. Give it a few dates. You may know you can’t stand someone right away, but sometimes the magic takes a little while to gel.

We all have lots of options – online dating is like a video game – so don’t play it too cool or you just might destroy a good thing.

January 2, 2018

Wow, 2018. That’s a big number for someone born in 1970. I’ll turn 48 later this year.

It’s been 18 months to the day since Rupert died. I’ve spent the evening finishing up my goal setting workshop and starting The You-Nicorn 30 day coaching workshop. The goal setting was amazing, and I have a list of what I need to do this month in order to achieve my three month goals. I have goals listed out five years!

The 30 day coaching was harder. We had to write about something that felled us with the perspective of how it made us MOVE FORWARD. Of course I wrote about the death of my boyfriend. I wrote it fast because it is so painful. I wrote about him encouraging me to be Absinthia all the time, not just in some circles. I wrote about him raising the bar, causing me to be strong enough to walk away from my parents and from men that don’t deserve me. I wrote about how confident I am that I will find the partner I’m seeking. I will find love again.

And I wrote about how goddamn determined I am to achieve my goals. He didn’t live to turn 46. I did. I’m still here. And I’m alive and I’m going to make sure every day counts. His death felled me. Once I was able to stand up, I made sure that experience moved me forward. And I’m still moving. I’m still alive.

October 18, 2017

Wow it’s been a while since I’ve been here. A while since I’ve felt like a hot grieving milf. I’m lonely. It’s hard. His birthday is coming up. Friends feel distant. My kids, too, though tonight was the first night my younger daughter has felt like her sweet, happy self in a while. Thankful for that!

It took me a while to log in. I’m tired and lost my train of thought. I’ll leave this her anyway. Maybe I’ll blog more for a while. My grandmother died. My last grandparent. No one liked her. She was angry and mean and alienated half the family. It’s very sad.

I’m so thrilled with my business. I’m being so supported and everyone wants to help and is cheering me on. It’s hard and it’s scary and it is so lonely being an entrepreneur. That came up at the angel pitch I attended yesterday. Maybe I would be happier in an office with people around. I do love my freedom and driving around meeting new people in their shops and restaurants though.

Whole Foods summit tomorrow. And my last final. No school for ten days.

I cant believe it’s almost his birthday. Again. The second one. We only spent one together. I’ll never understand.

August 6, 2017

When I told me housemate I was rebounded, she told me that sounded too negative. "You're just trying to date and figure out my relationships with men," she said.

Perhaps. I'm not so sure.

I've had some wacky things happen that I haven't shared here.

In March, I volunteered at a Burning Man conference. It was days before starting my new job, and months after diving into grad school as a single mom. I decided my perk for volunteering four days of my time would be getting laid. I didn't worry about the how.

On day three, I managed to sneak away from my station so I could listen to my longtime friend and current CEO of Burning Man speak. We had been encouraged as volunteers to dress in our playa weirdest. That day, I was wearing a green Hello Kitty cheerleading dress from a clothing exchange at American Steel, and I was carrying these cheap green Pom Poms I'd bought in amazon. I sat down near the door so I could sneak back to my station unnoticed. That's when I saw him noticing me.

There were about ten empty seats between us. We looked up and smiled at each other a few times. I got up my nerve, collected my Pom Poms, and walked over to the empty chair next to him. I asked if it was okay if I sat there. He said yes, and then he told me, "I was a cheerleader in high school."
I replied, "So, when most of the guys were at football practice, you got to ride in the bus with all the cheerleaders?"
"Yep," and he gave me a heart melting grin.

We whispered a little during her talk, and when she was through I told him I had to return to work and gave him my card. He found me a little later and asked if we could meet at the party at NIMBY that night.

I found him about an hour after I'd arrived and he said he'd been looking for me. He seemed annoyed. It was a huge party. I was a little surprised he wouldn't shoot the funny hydraulic gun at one of the interactive stations with me, but we flirted and talked and wandered around and then an old friend came up and he wandered off but found me later on the dance floor. The party ended soon after, and my housemate called a lyft. He jumped in with us. We had two conference attendees staying with us. One was asleep; her partner came up and welcomed us home. She told me later he woke her up excitedly, saying, "Absinthia brought a guy home!"

I drove him back to his hotel the next morning, and we met up that night at the closing party. I spent that night at his hotel, and he confessed he'd pocketed my panties that morning. I thought that was hot.

The next morning, he flew home and I started my job.

He texted me a bunch, and I was happily surprised when I realized we were staying in touch. But things got weird fast. I wouldn't hear from him for days on end, and then he'd send me an article on how to be a Power Couple. One night, friends walked in my home for dinner and found me a complete mess. It had been over a week since we talked, and he sent me a message about how he loved me and had been thinking about our kids and living in different states and had no idea how to make it work. I had no idea what to do wth this information when one friend suggested I invite him to the campout the following month. So I did.

He didn't reply.

A few days went by. I emailed him how confusing that was for me, and he told me I was being dramatic. He said he'd love to but had to check his custody. A lot of time went by. Out of the blue one day, he texted me his travel plans. He was coming. The weekend was Friday to Monday, and he was coming Thursday till Tuesday. I told him to come Friday. It weirded me out, I didn't want him to meet my kid, but he changed his plans. I relaxed and got excited.

When he showed up, we had a wonderful drive. We held hands and kissed, stopped for lunch. We talked and laughed. We got the dance floor and had a great time after setting up camp. We had sex but it was a little awkward and quick.

The next morning he jumped out of bed without touching me. We talked about our plans and ideas for the day, made breakfast, that sort of thing. I sensed a weird energy pull from him any time I tried to do something. Being an equal partner is important to me; it felt like he couldn't handle that. By the time we got to the river later that day, he told me, "You're pretty bossy, you know." My heart sank. I told him I was sorry he was feeling that way, and that I had sensed a power struggle earlier. Perhaps we can bring that up and work on it and talk about it when it happens?"

It took a few hours, but by nightfall, he was ignoring me and not making eye contact. Still, he only knew the few people I'd introduced him to around camp. We went to the dance floor and he acted bored until camp mates turned up, and he lit up and hugged each one. I was hurt and confused.

We had some conversations that stopped me in my tracks. He trash talked his ex wife a lot. He started talking about anal sex and how his wife wouldn't do it, how he's longed for someone to fuck him in the ass for a very long time. Okay, maybe we can make that happen. He asked me about several people and whether they were a man or a woman. I replied with the gender they presented and didn't think much of it. He asked, "Are you sure??? Do you really know?"
"Why does it matter?"
"Oh my god because it matters!" He replied.

I will say one interesting conversation we had was about deaths we'd seen. I brought up safe sex, and he was surprised. He'd never heard of anyone he knew with AIDS. I've lost several. He said it was pills and heroin that he'd seen in Salt Lake City. Living in New York, San Francisco, and Oakland, I hadn't seen very much of that. But AIDS, definitely. That disease really affected my life.

He told me about his upbringing and that he was kicked out of the Mormon church when he was 14. Um. That should come first, pal, not in the middle of the mountains with 500 of my closest friends.

The next morning, it was worse. I left camp shortly after breakfast, and didn't return for hours. I just wanted to get away from him. My campmate collected me at dinner time, told me there was food, and she told me that I should try to engage with him. I did. We ate and went to the dance floor, and I saw him disengage with me and act bored. I walked away calmly and put myself to bed.

We left the next morning. I said, "I'd like you to find somewhere else to stay tonight, please."
"Oh, okay. Is there something I said to upset you?"
Wait what? Does he feel everything's fine between us? I asked him that, he said he wasn't sure, and I asked him about the bossy comment. He got very defensive and it was impossible to communicate. I went silent and after he sent a few texts he made arrangements, and I dropped him off at bart after the longest four hour drive ever.

He came around to my side of the car and said, "I'm sorry things didn't go smoothly between us. Thank you for an amazing weekend. I've never been to that part of California and I really enjoyed it. Can I have a hug?"

I gave him a quick hug and drove home, relieved to have him out of my life. Later that night, he texted me all about where he was staying and how it had worked out and signed it Loves!!!

I unfriended him the next morning. By the evening, I saw his name was not bold in my camp mates post tagging him. He'd blocked me.

There it is, out in the open for all its weirdness. It is so hard to be human. I promise to post more weird stories like this as they happen. They seem to happen a lot.

July 28, 2017

I think what people don't realize is that no matter how much they hurt me, I've already been cut deeper and survived.

I wasn't invited to a friend's birthday dinner this evening.
He hasn't called.
My housemate brought home dinner and left mine in a box, while plate-ing theirs and eating it in their room.

It made me feel isolated and hurt. Single. Lonely. I'm single, but I'm not lonely. I ended up at a friends picking something up from her for tomorrow's costume event and having a lot of fun. I spent the rest of the evening home relaxing.

I surprised myself when tears started falling. I miss him terribly. I like this new guy more than I should, and I know he's always going to let me down. I hate it when a bucket with a fuck in it appears in my hand. I need to remember my faith in the future. Someone new will come along and shake things up, and I'll wonder why I was hung up on a known disappointment. But right now I care and it hurts.

It's just a small hurt, though. I can handle it. I've lived through the last year and the four years before that, and this is not even a thing.

No man will ever hurt me again like that. I can't say for certain that's the worst thing that will ever happen to me; I can say that I've survived it. I have so much to do here, and I'll keep on surviving.

Oops, there goes that bucket of fucks.

July 21, 2017

I reached a milestone today. In 2007, absinthe was made legal. I'd been making it for ten years already, since April fools day 1997 in Port Costa when Hernan called me Absinthia. When it was first legal, I quickly decided to stay under the radar. Bootlegging just seemed easier than launching an absinthe in crazytown America.

I never should have done this.

And yet, here I am, four years later and thousands of dollars self invested into my own absinthe brand.

Today, we tasted it at Sidebar. We've been talking about this day for years. I handed everything over to Jared, my business partner in Caged Heat cocktail syrup, one of my closest friends, and a true cocktologist, as he prefers. He looked at me incredulously as he opened the seals on the bottles.

"Do you have imposter syndrome?" he asked.
"Yes, of course I do," I replied sheepishly.
"Yep, me too." He finished opening the three bottles.

It's his award winning recipe that we've placed on Amazon and in shops, restaurants, and bars across the country. If I wasn't there to kick shit forward, it likely wouldn't be on the market. We do that for each other.

As he tried it, his face got very serious, and he nodded continuously. "It's perfect." He said. I reached for the glass. I'm not an imposter. I'm not an imposter.

We had three samples to test. One was perfect. The other two need work, work that may take another year. I may launch one sku to knock it out of the park. That's all
I'm saying about that. I'm no imposter.

There will be more milestones to come. Bottling. Holding those gorgeous screen printed bottles in my hand, the ones with the wormwood art I have tattooed on my back. Signing a distributor deal. Getting customers. Seeing it on the shelves. Perhaps even turning a profit one day.

Most importantly, fulfilling the dream I decided I would regret not chasing four years ago.

Crazytown America.