"All sorts of entertaining" - Elizabeth Seckman

"Michael and his pals make me wish I lived in Adelaide" - Cherdo

"If I had a daughter, I'd send her to Australia to meet him (and marry him)" - Robyn Alana Engel

"An Australian version of me. Only younger. And Talented. And better looking. Okay, nothing like me." - Al Penwasser

"Whom must I fuck or pay to get a quotation at the top of your blog post?" - Janie Junebug

Sunday, 15 February 2015

Fear of Failure Week 2: Valentines Day

I woke up on Monday morning listening to Fresh 92.7, the radio station I volunteer at. The breakfast team had brought in a girl from the office to play a game of matchmaker.

'Now Georgia, you're a stunning girl,' said Host Number 1.
'Yeah, I like to think so,' she replied cheekily.
'Which is why we thought it was time to get you a date,' said Host Number 2. 'We're going to play a game called "Um... no."'
'Because you are one of those girls who brings out the attitude when she's not impressed. So here's what we're going to do - Our listeners are going to call up and try their best pickup lines. If they can make you laugh, they'll score a date with you. If not, you're going to hit them with a bit of "Um... no."'
'So the odds are stacked against the listeners here, it's time to call! We'll hear your pickup lines after this track from Tiesto. You're listening to Fresh.'

I sat there in bed for a full two minutes wondering if I could do it. But you know what... It's a bit too early in the year for me to make a fool of myself in front of the whole city. For now, I'll stick to looking stupid in front of individuals or small crowds. I'll work up to entire cities later in the year. As it was, only one person had the guts to call, and he was a regular caller to the show. The rest of the listeners sent Snapchats directly to the hosts which had their pickup lines on them. Looks like they all felt too awkward to put themselves out there.

Last week I talked about the four things that I need to conquer in order to get over my fear of failure. I figured that since Valentines day was coming up this week, I'd tackle the biggest one first - getting rejected by girls.

Man, that sounds pathetic when I say it out loud. If you're a rare or first-time visitor to this blog, rest assured that I'm not this pathetic all the time. It's just a weakness that I need to get over.

So I needed to pick someone to ask out. But who? I'm such a stranger to the dating scene. Do people who go on dates usually intend to make it a long-term thing? Is a date like a job interview for becoming someone's partner? Or is it more like two friends of the opposite (or same) sex just enjoying each other's company? I don't know which one I preferred. Even to say you like someone doesn't mean the same thing to everyone. To some people, liking someone is one step away from love. To others, it's more of a "You're cute and I'd like to spend time with you." And then, at what point do you call someone your partner? I used to think that the moment you start dating someone, you're their partner. Now I see that's there's several degrees before that such as "A guy I'm seeing", "A really close friend" and "My booty call". It's this kind of muddy water that I would have to try and swim through in the lead-up to Valentine's day.

At the pub where I do my quizzes there's a girl named Holly. I deal with her to get the prizes, handle problems etc. Two months ago we'd had a conversation about how we'd both come to be single. Since then I'd wondered if I should or could ask her out. The correct answer is of course I can, it's just a matter of doing it. I've talked myself out of it a million times in the past, it just comes down to opening my mouth and worrying about the consequences later. This week as I was packing up my gear, I walked past her wiping down the bar. There was a big picture of a love heart drawn on the wall in chalk with the words "Cupid's Arrow" written inside and next to it was a list of ingredients used to make the corresponding cocktail.
'Who comes up with these?' I asked incredulously. Holly laughed.
'It's kind of a joint effort among all the staff. We sit around and have meetings on this stuff.'
'Is this one yours?'
'No, everyone's given up on taking my suggestions. My cocktails are awful. I don't drink cocktails, I'm more of a beer girl. What do you think of it?' she said, motioning back to the wall.
'It's very... Valentines-y'
'Yeah, that's the point.'
'Totally get that.' I could barely get the words out of my mouth because my heart was in the way. 'Have you got a date for Valentines Day?'
'Yeah, my boyfriend and I will probably do something.'

Yeah, that happened.

'Oh... a couple of months ago you were single.'
'Yeah... and now I'm not.' she said, treating it like the dumb comment that it was. 'What about you, do you have a date?' At his point I was a deer in the cross hairs and she wouldn't put the rifle down.
'Um, I was trying to ask you,' I replied sheepishly.
'Oh,' she said and paused. 'But we haven't actually talked that much.'
'What do you mean?'
'Well, we don't actually know each other that well.'
'Yeah, I was planning on getting to know you better on the date.'
'Aw, that's cute,' she said smiling as she went back to her wiping. I'm not sure how I feel about being called cute. I find it a bit patronising. I would have preferred she say "Wow, that's very manly", or "That's very sexy of you". The way she said it made it sound like she was going to pinch my cheeks and give me a lollypop. I left defeated and went to say goodbye to the quiz players that were still around.

One of those players was a girl named Rose. Her and a friend had been coming every week for the last month-and-a-half and they'd fallen in love with the night. They'd wrangled up more and more people to join them every week an I loved their enthusiasm and outgoing attitude. As I approached their table with my bag and laptop in tow, Rose said
'You're not going are you? Sit down, we have so much to talk about!'
Well that piqued my interest, so I dropped my gear and took up a seat. She started to tell me about all the big events that had happened to her during the week and we chatted for nearly an hour.I forgot all about what had happened with Holly.

As I left to go home, I thought about Holly again and I realized how easy it had been and how quickly I brushed it off. It made me so happy that I started laughing in the car. But I was still left with the problem of not having a date for Valentines Day. So then I thought of Rose and about her fun-loving attitude and how easy she was to talk to. I'd never thought of her in terms of dating, but maybe she could be the one. I arrived home and took out my phone, sending her this text message.
'Hey if you're free on Saturday, would you like to go on a date for Valentines Day?' Ten minutes later, she replied.
'Hey thanks, but I'm not really looking to date anyone right now...'
Oh for fuck's sake.

69 comments:

  1. Double bummer.
    Holly's answer was a bit lame though. Dating is how you get to know someone better.
    I've always thought that two friends going out is best, because then you have something in common already.
    Don't give up, Michael.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank Alex. Yeah it might have been an attempt to diffuse the situation.

      Delete
  2. You know, Michael... you're not the only who could have popped the 'date invite,' right? I'm sure there are women who could ask you, "Hey, Jumper, let's find a plane, and fall from the sky?" Like that jump - it's a matter of timing. You've got lots of things on your plate that you're interested in doing, or learning. So it might be that a certain someone isn't dating either because they want.......(fill in the blank.) I know you may think patience is a four letter word, but you don't want a epitaph that reads, "Death to Smoochie." (old movie).

    This is improv at it's finest. Reading clues from people's words, body language, and all that blah-blah stuff. Timing. Because it will happen. You'll know when. So will the charming lady! Until then I leave you with the current lyrics from the cutesy, (yeah I know), movie "Frozen": "Let it go.... let it go.... can't hold it back anymore....." (Your post ending cracked me up.) :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hah yeah I just wish I could get the timing right a bit more often ;)

      Delete
  3. Don't give up. It will happen. At least you are open to the idea and the possibility. What happened to me and what I've heard has happened to others is that when you stop looking is when you find someone. Just be yourself and have fun doing things you like to do. That way you will be around others who like the same things you do and eventually you will find someone you have a lot in common with. If you meet someone who is friendly and easy to talk to, ask her out for a coffee or a bite of lunch. Take your time and be patient. Like Alex said above, make friends with someone first (or lots of someones) and the romantic dating stuff will follow more easily, I think.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's actually what happened with Jerida. I was looking everywhere else except in her direction and I often told her that might be the reason we made such a good couple.

      Delete
  4. lmao I was laughing with you and not at you over the cute remark. But you showed yourself you can get over it fast, which is a good thing. So always a positive there.

    And you just described why I hate dating soooo much. Some think it's one step from love, others a fling, others this that and the other thing. Such a pain in the arse

    ReplyDelete
  5. You did really well, Michael! The goal is to overcome your shyness about asking out women, not to actually get dates. The more people you ask out, the easier and smoother it will be for you. And dating is a numbers game -- ask enough women out and sooner or later, one will say yes.

    Both of these girls turned you down very nicely and with friendship. I bet each of them was flattered that you asked her.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Absolutely, and there'll bit a bit more about it coming up next week. Very good point about the point of the exercise, of course I forgot about that for a moment :P

      Delete
  6. At least you tried - twice in one night! Kudos on that; it always takes courage to ask someone out. That, or indifference to the outcome. Keep practicing and it will get easier. And like others have said, it always works best when it comes out of friendship first.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's what I've always assumed, but I have very few good friends who are single and that I'm interested in :P

      Delete
  7. Being called cute is good, trust me. It does not in any way take away from manliness if I call a guy cute. The other girl, I have no clue what's wrong with her. But the more you try, the more comfortable you become, so don't give up!

    Is online dating a thing in Australia? It's become super popular here in the US, pretty mainstream. Maybe you should consider that? Or do you have speed dating? That would be a great excercise for you to try!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have considered online dating, but I'm not sure I'm a fan of trying to date a stranger. Like Susan said above, I'd much rather know a person first.

      Delete
  8. Oh man, I'm laughing with you too (not at you). I know many women that have made me say 'oh for fuck's sake' in my day, but hey, it's better to have tried than not at all. The best secret? Practice regularly, and don't ask out a friend. As they say, 'don't make it weird, bro'.

    In other words, I think a big problem people have is finding someone they like but not having the courage to ask them out initially, so they become friends. Then when they finally do reach the breaking point and sum up the balls to ask them out, it makes it really weird and uncomfortable because the other person just sees them as a friend. It's also much more devastating to the asker-outer (technical term) since he's built it up into such a huge thing.

    But really, if you see someone you like, asking them out like this is perfect. You aren't attached so it's not a huge rejection, and you don't bottle it up while you try to make something out of (potentially) nothing. I'd say you're doing a damn good job, man.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Uh oh, now I've got conflicting advice. Others are saying that being friends first makes for a better relationship. But you've got a good point about essentially being friendzoned ;)

      Thanks man :)

      Delete
    2. Everyone's experiences vary, and there's nothing wrong with dating a friend, but yes, evade the friendzone like the sinking death pit of quicksand that it is!

      At no point in meeting my wife did I ever have any desire to just be her friend. I knew immediately that I wanted to date her. Just sayin'. :)

      (And glad to help any way I can)

      Delete
    3. Aw, that's so cu-... manly of you ;)

      Delete
  9. My nephew recommended OKCupid to me. It worked. I've had the Wooters man almost two years.

    Love,
    Janie

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well I can't argue with a testimony like that ;)

      Delete
  10. Dunno if this will help... but women are just as nervous, and maybe even a little more so; really.
    Ask them in a way, treat them in a way, you would appreciate; with interest, respect, and care... and don't accept less in return.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Okay, so I might need to change my pickup line of "Hey Sugartits, wanna bang?"

      Delete
  11. OH FOR CRYING OUT LOUD WHAT'S WRONG WITH THESE WOMEN?? Do they have to live in Australia? I know some lovely young women who would adore you...

    Happy Valentine's Day, Michael.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey, I forgot to say that I love the "quote" at the top. It's still true!

      Delete
    2. I bet they can smell my fear :P

      Thanks, I had a rough time picking the best quotes to go there :)

      Delete
  12. What a total bummer! But, as a woman, I'd probably be a little put off having someone ask me out on Valentine's Day as a first date, as it's one of the supposed most romantic days of the year. Maybe that's what was wrong with Rose? Or she was just a big jerk. Who knows? I've been with my husband a long, long time, but before we were together, I didn't like the pressure of having someone ask me on a "date". I liked falling for someone naturally. "Hey, wanna go grab an ice cream after work?" Or "Some buddies of mine are getting together for board games. Wanna come over and join?" Non intimate settings where we could get to know each other slowly over the course of some time actually led to a long term relationship.

    One of the worst things a guy ever said to me? I was rip roaring drunk (I was good girl with a wild child heart every now and again). He was the designated driver taking me home and was like "Can I kiss you?" Uh, no. Your just the driver, I'm drunk and spent the last hour sick, and we just met today. Gross. Then he proceeded to steal my hair brush so he could call me the next day to bring it back, then ask me out again. No, thanks buddy. If you try to move in on a drunk chick the day you met her, you are no dude I want to be with. Sorry to go off thread here, just giving you some pointers as to what not to do lol!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Not at all, that's very interesting. That sounds exactly like what I'd like to happen (coming together naturally), but I feel like I need to be able to approach girls out of the blue to get over my insecurities.

      Your story made notice a pattern: It seems more important for the woman to feel sexy than for the man to be when he's asking her out. For example one of a guy's favourite places to potentially find women is the gym. But surveys say that women hate being picked up at the gym because they've been sweating and aren't wearing makeup.

      Delete
    2. Of course we want to feel like we are pretty enough to have you asking us out. Otherwise we probably feel you are just looking for a booty call ;)

      I've heard a lot of pick up lines over the years. Most of them raunchy or cheesy. One of the best pick up lines a stranger ever said to me? He walk straight into the bookstore where I worked, looked me straight in the eye and said "Wanna go for coffee sometime?" This is a guy I probably wouldn't have noticed before that, but honestly, I was so impressed with his straightforward attitude and his confidence, if I weren't with my now husband, I would have totally taken him up on that offer.

      So, get out there, exude confidence (but not cockiness), don't use stupid pick up lines, and get your girl ;)

      Delete
    3. I think that may be the best advice I've read yet :)

      Delete
  13. I spent some time on awkward dates in college. Finally I decided when it was all said and done that I wanted my now husband, which had be my best friend throughout college. No dating with him. We already knew each other. Sometimes you end up going with your best friend.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Sometimes dating can be super awkward sometimes but it's also a learning experience each and every time.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Totally agree. Although I've only ever been on one actual proper date, each girl I've come to like has taught me something.

      Delete
  15. I repeat your sentiment: Oh for fuck's sake! Damnit, stupid girls. It took a lot of courage, both times, on your part, Michael. As much as it's difficult to be proud when you're slammed by "how cute" (that is freakin patronizing) and "I'm not looking to date anyone" you have already conquered your fears. I'm proud of you. I just looked around, and I still can't find my daughter (I guess I never gave birth to her) to send your way. For fuck's sake. Stay in the game. You're a gem.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'd like to see you storm over here and give them a piece of your mind ;)

      Delete
    2. I'd love to, Michael. I'd start with a raging "For fuck's sake! What the hell is wrong with you?" and it would go downhill from there. I might be small but I'm pretty damn tough, and I'm also pretty damn mad at them. They wouldn't know what/who hit them. =)

      Delete
  16. lol, aw!!! Well still, I think that's awesome! I mean you definitely weren't rejected by Holly if she has a boyfriend! That's not rejection.

    Sorry about Rose, lol. It happens.But hey, the more you do that the easier it will be! Truly.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Sorry, man. Don't give up, though. There's somebody out there who would love to go out with you . . . and who's available!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hahaha that's the key, they have to be available ;)

      Delete
  18. Sorry, man. Don't give up, though. There's somebody out there who would love to go out with you . . . and who's available!

    ReplyDelete
  19. The guys whom I've known who were most successful at picking up girls were the ones who didn't seem to care all that much and just kept trying until they got a taker which was usually pretty quick--and these guys weren't all that good looking or brilliant or anything. They just had persistence and a lot of gumption.

    Maybe for some of us it's not so much a fear of failure as a fear of what will happen if the pick up is successful. Do people get hurt? Do you get stuck in a relationship you wish you weren't in? Maybe it's a good idea to be a bit discriminating, but move when the time seems right.

    Arlee Bird
    A to Z Challenge Co-host
    Tossing It Out

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's an interesting theory. I don't think I'm worried about getting a yes and then it falling apart down the track, because usually when stuff like that happens I learn ALOT from it.

      Delete
  20. All that matters is that you tried. You'll find the right girl who'll be happy to go out on a date with you. Trust me, she's out there. She'll come when it's the right time. :)

    ReplyDelete
  21. You can do it, Michael. Maybe you' ve already done son. I know this sounds cliche, but it's often true, when you're not thinking about it, it will happen.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah that's exactly what happened with my first girlfriend :P

      Delete
  22. I think you need to sharpen your antennae so you can tell when a girl wants you to ask her out. Make a lot of eye contact when you're talking to her and observe how she reacts.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hahahaha I already do look out for it, but I NEVER get ask-me-out signals!

      Delete
  23. I was thinking about having Lord Throckmorton Fungusleaves do a vlog about this sort of a topic. It would be called "How to Win the Girl of Your Dreams and Transform Your Life" or some kinda crap like that. Though I know nothing about that subject, other than endless failure, so it is kind of hard. I guess the most realistic advice I ever heard on this subject came from film director Kevin Smith. I am paraphrasing but basically he said, "You have to be really handsome or good looking like Ben Afleck. If you're not really good looking you need to have something to offer." So basically you either have to be good looking or rich.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well you might not know much about it, but I bet Lord Throckmorton's a wealth of information. I think in a lot of cases you can be neither good looking nor rich, just as long as you have confidence.

      Delete
    2. Yeah, I meant to bring that up, but I forgot. Just ACTING confident would help a lot. I think my Catholic upbringing brainwashed me to try to be humble so acting confident all the time would make me feel like I am asking to be struck by lightning.

      Delete
    3. Hahaha which means the only advantage you have left is your sense of humour ;)

      Delete
    4. I hope I have a damn good sense of humor in that case!

      Delete
    5. You sure do :) Enough so that it makes up for the fact that you look like a gorilla ;)

      Delete
  24. Ugh!!! That sucks. I hated dating...and it seemed like the older you got, the harder it was. When you're a teenager you're just too naive to know how scary it is! I think it's even harder for men since you guys are often expected to make that fist move. I did online dating when I was single...it isn't for everyone but it worked for me!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm glad it worked for you! I've never really done actual dating. my first girlfriend I was friends with first and then we just became boyfriend and girlfriend. Since we broke up I've been on one date and never got the callback ;)

      Delete
  25. I also give you lots of credit for trying, Michael! Valentine's Day can be thought of as an awkward first date. I think there's even less pressure if you casually suggest meeting a girl for coffee or drinks during the week. Even lunch sounds friendlier, and less complicated than dinner. You might also want to avoid the word "date," at the
    beginning. Both of these girls would've been lucky to go out with you. I'm sorry things
    turned out that way, but you'll just have to chalk it up to bad timing. Good luck, Michael!

    Julie

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Actually, I was thinking I might try that next time. Thanks for your help :)

      Delete
  26. Oh no!! Dont let the rejections get you down. You WILL find someone when it's the right someone and you prob want to scream at me for saying that.

    I would try a website just so you meet new people AND you know they are looking for the same thing. I've done it and met a couple nice guys. A date is like an interview, so it doesn't matter if you don't know each other too well yet.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No, I've always believed that too. I hope it happens soon though :P

      Delete
  27. i am the worst at dating / meeting people. i get super uncomfortable because people tend to not get if i'm being sarcastic or serious. i am also extremely clumsy and lots of other wonderful flaws i consider part of my charm.
    i am a prize package, what can i say??
    any way, i met my current bf on Plenty Of Fish, i highly recommend it. you will get some crazy messages from people, but you don't have to meet or respond to anyone.
    i found it much easier to talk to someone online first to get a feel and then make the call if i wanted to meet them or not. just figured id put it out there.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Okay, you make a convincing argument. Totally get what you're saying about people not being able to tell if you're joking :P

      Delete
  28. I loved being single I love being married (I've been married a very long time). The dating thing though...hated that. The awkward uncertainties on both side of the coin, blech. BUT it's just a road. Might as well have fun while you're driving on it. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love the way you put it, I'll take it on board :)

      Delete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Share This Page

Any part of this blog may be reproduced or distributed, providing credit is given to the original author.