Where to start

Before we start the game we have to find out where we stand. Why do I do this experiment?

I think people perceive me as tough and not needing anybody. This is, of course, a misperception. Everybody needs somebody sometimes. But I am not good in small talk and don’t open up too easily. I am very happy on my own and I don’t need someone to give my life a meaning. Nevertheless, I like being in good company and spending time with family and friends. Plus, I would appreciate an active love life and, ideally, sharing my life with someone.

Why, then, have I been single for quite a while now? I often struggle with feeling like I have nothing to add in social settings because I am very direct and I hate the games people play with each other. I find politics stressing and after several days with lots of contacts I need some time for myself to recharge my batteries. When it comes to social life, I’m a bit Sheldon-like. I couldn’t be bothered by most of the things people say or do. The other side of that is that I do not judge but respect everybody for being him / her.

People who know me better say I am a warm, funny person who just doesn’t show it. I want to show less disinterest and be more outgoing. I don’t want to spend Friday night on my sofa eating crisps. I want to meet new people and bring some adventure into my life. I became lazy, and that has to stop. This experiment is about meeting people and challenging me, not first and foremost about finding a new partner. Although I won’t complain, should that be a side effect.

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Kick it

The 111th item on my bucket list is to go the airport and book the next flight available. That is something I always wanted to do. But as soon as I think about it I come up with questions such as:

  • Can I afford the flight?
  • Would I need a visa?
  • What about vaccination?
  • When is the return flight?
  • Who cares for my cats?
  • And the kid?
  • Will I arrive somewhere where I can buy the clothing I need? (Airport: check. Stores: nope.)
  • Do I know a language helpful at the destination?

In my fantasy I am so adventurous and spontaneous. And in real life I am so German, thinking about visa and health care. Boring!

But then I realise where you see people driving to the airport to take a ‘next flight adventure’. It’s in American movies. Haha! You Americans, you can fly hours and hours within your own country! How much of an adventure is that? While you travel from coast to coast, I can cross three or four countries and travel to Asia or Africa. O.k., I could also arrive at the airport up for an adventure and end up in Weeze. Where, I am sure, I could not buy clothes or find a hotel before returning home the next day.

If I took the next flight right now, I would end up in: London! STRIKE!!!

And you?

Does it work?

If you are like any woman looking for a relationship, you might have heard about ‘The rules’. The book was a great success with the bottom line: Do not allow anyone to treat you like crap, and your relationship will be alright. Sadly enough, many women have to be told about this. It’s shocking how many of them allow men to behave like real jerks, and I always wondered why that is.

I grew up being told that women want love and men want sex, so the best way to be loved is to wait with being intimate, only to find that THAT’S BULLSHIT!!! Women want to get laid so badly, the only problem we have is that we are considered sluts if we admit it – be it in a relationship or not. Contrary to men, who have to be always ready for an adventure, it seems. Maybe that explains why many men treat women badly, and why many women allow them to do so. Horny women are sluts, and both genders learn that early in their life. Unfortunately, both sides seem to be unhappy with the result, or why is it that nobody is as easily screwable as married men?

As a woman, you do not want to end up finding your man disinterested and with one foot constantly out of the door (As if! They are way too lazy to leave you.). Accordingly, literature for women builds on tips like ‘Do not call him, wait with being intimate and never say ‘I love you’ first’. Unfortunately, political correctness lead us into an age where men approaching women risk being accused of all kinds if misbehaviour only for asking you out. So, how do we meet when 50% are told to wait while the other half learns not to approach?

Is it us against them? And when did that happen?

It was eye-opening for me when I realised men have problems finding a woman just like women find it difficult to find the right match. I do not feel like online-dating makes it any easier. And I have to admit I have not reached the point of total desperation where I am ready to think about which hair colour or star sign I want in a man (although I am done with Sagittarius, so bugger off!). I still believe in the magic of seeing someone across the room and feeling attracted enough to move my ass over. Or, as a rules girl, wait until he makes his move.

And then, on a book-exchange party the other day, I came across ‘The Rules of the Game’ by Neil Strauss. You may have heard about ‘pick up artists’, a more or less secret circle for men learning how to pick up women. Yes, they are learning about talking us out of our clothes! And they write books about it. And then it hit me: What if a woman would behave like that? What if Charlotte is all wrong and Samantha got it all right?

So I decided to make this the 2016 social field study: I will work my way through the workbook, try the tips for men on them and see where it gets me. The book is designed as a 30 day challenge striving to get a date, but I will work through it slowly. After all, I am going to destroy everything I believed in when it comes to dating.

Resolved

Do you make New Year’s resolutions? I have developed the habit of setting goals and planning for reaching my goals, and making resolutions is part of the strategy. However, I am not good in making commitments, so my resolutions often end up as wishes.

This does not mean I wouldn’t reach my goals. You could argue that a good plan is flexible enough to catch a chance and that making a useful resolution is not so much about ‘what to do’ but rather about ‘where to go’. It focuses the mind. I found that not keeping resolutions very often is a sign that the goal was not clear. E.g., like many people I used to make resolutions like ‘do more sports’ or ‘lose weight’. With resolutions like that you set yourself up to failure. Nobody wants to do more sports or lose weight. We want to be fit, feel sexy or release our back pain.

With the goal in mind, keeping resolutions becomes much easier. If you want to learn about setting good goals have a look at Frau Junge’s post. Making resolutions should not be something you avoid because you found you never keep them. Thinking about the direction of your life and whether you are heading where you want to end up is useful. And the beginning of a new year, with the pages still blank, is a good time to do so on a regular basis. Just be careful to set resolutions which are meaningful to you and help you reach your goals.

The most important resolution I made for 2016 is to actually check items on my bucket list. This list currently holds 116 items, and only no. 116 is already done (tried water ski; my left knee is wracked now, but it was fun). I still put stuff on the list whenever I feel like, and I have been working towards some of the long term items (such as performing with my favourite artists) as well as on my patience towards the items I cannot influence, like becoming a grandmother. This year I promise myself to turn to some of the adventurous, cool short term items.

I also decided on my next field study. You will learn more about it in due course.

If you want to, feel free to share your resolutions in the comment section.

Back again: Stroke of Midnight

Ah, a new year! I love this part of the year, when everything seems possible just because I had to buy a new calendar. It feels as if with those 365 new blank pages life gets a reset.

Of course, that’s bullshit. Nothing changes just because the majority of mankind now uses another year when writing down dates. Nevertheless, the end of the old year has been a great opportunity to party ever since. At least until I became a mother of a son who hates parties. And who suffers from anxiety partly bound to time passing by, which makes celebrating New Year’s Eve more of a crisis intervention rather than anything else.

Hence, I spent last night at home. We watched ‘Dinner for one’ together, just as every year. We had nice dinner ourselves and then I was reading a book while the son did whatever he does when he is online with his programming community. At midnight I went down with the neighbours to have some firework, and then made some more food before we went to bed.

Did I mention that I hate that? Although, not hating, no. I am lazy, I like to be on my own and I love spending time with the son. But, that’s not how I want to meet the New Year. Ever since, I wanted to spend New Year’s Eve at a fancy cocktail party with live music and people dressed up in long dresses and suits. I never did. And I have no idea why. Except that I did not throw this party myself. And I don’t know people who do throw parties like that.

But that’s what I want to do on New Year’s Eve: Wear a beautiful dress, drink Cosmopolitan and dance with a gorgeous man when the band plays love songs. And at midnight, we watch the firework and make plans for the next 365 days.

Oh. My. Goodness.

Do you have an idea how long I have been away? I was not lazy, not at all. But I definitely need to re-develop a regular writing habit.

Speaking of it, I used the time away from blogging to do something I have always wanted and now am going to share with you: Last Friday night I had my debut as a comedian on stage, and it was hilarious! I attended a class on writing comedy, and the event last Friday was our end-of-term presentation held in a club in Hamburg with a proper audience. We had so much fun!

So, the first item on my 2015 bucket list: check.

What are you folks up to?

Cheers,

Nae

Harvesting

I love Autumn. Which is easy when it is hot like summer, as this week in Northern Germany 🙂

I love everything about it. I love the amazing variety of colours. I also like the fresh greens of Spring or the deep blue of a Summer’s ocean or the bright white of fresh snow. But my favourite time of the year is Autumn. It is still fairly warm and the days have enough sunny hours to prevent you from thinking ahead to depression February. I celebrate my birthday in Autumn. So maybe I like it because it was the first shade of light I saw.

But most of all, Autumn is the time to bring in the harvest. It is a time when people get back to working routine after their summer vacations. I use to go through my to-do-lists and decide what I want to accomplish before the end of the year, and what to let go. And that makes me work on very focused. It is always an active time, but different from Summer when being busy and having fun is more of a social pressure you have to obey to. In Autumn, you can take care for your own goals again. Harvesting has elements of both: earning what you seeded, and preparing for the next year by bringing in the first new seed.

Hence, I use Autumn to discuss project ideas which might be realised in the next year. And I try to close whatever possible before Winter comes. I have no idea why I am still so close to the change of seasons. Maybe it’s the legacy of farming people in my family history – although my grand-grandfather was the last farmer (I talked about my family developing through the generations from farming to academia in another post). Anyway, sometimes I think, that’s also why I don’t like to eat right after waking up. I normally feel like working a few hours before having breakfast. Like, you know, before you can have your cereals, you have to milk the cow.

I’m thinking of attending university dressed up on Halloween. Is that too crazy for a lecturer? And, would you join me and wear costumes in your jobs?

Cheers, Nae73