Guys: The next time a woman invites you to her apartment, scope out her living space for stuffed animals. They're more common than you might think. And if you do happen to glimpse a teddy bear, a Hello Kitty or, worse, a collection of porcelain dolls, you may want to keep in mind what it could mean about her dating habits.
Three years ago, off the back of a bad relationship, I needed out of Southern California and decided to move to London for six months. I was looking forward to being single for the first time in five years and was relishing the chance to dance, date and drink in a massive, heaving city. I would kick up my heels in swanky clubs, live in a Tudor cottage and date a man who wore a bowler hat and carried an umbrella. Three weeks later, I opened the front door to find my roommate's brother, Mark, standing there with a bag in one hand, a bicycle in the other. He had just left his wife and three children and needed a place to stay.
In a former life filled with long lunches and spray tanning, I was a reality show casting director in Hollywood. I worked on some wildly popular prime-time hits as well as some pilots that never saw the light of day. I started my career at Blind Date, back when MySpace was still a place for friends and Facebook was a twinkle in Mark Zuckerberg's eye, and I'd often turn to this "new online world" to search for contestants. Dating tips gleaned from casting The Bachelor and other reality TV shows. I had just started dabbling in online dating myself and navigated the virtual waters with ease. I'd post clever ads on Craigslist and flirt with guys on Friendster, all in the name of casting the show. But try as I might, I couldn't always rely on the Internet to find willing male participants—I actually had to go out and meet men. In real life. I was very shy. I'd sweat in the weirdest places when my nerves would kick in. So whether on the clock or not, I would always say I was "casting a show" when I'd approach good-looking men. That way, I'd never feel jilted if they declined my advances. But casting the shows taught me how to build my self-confidence and, frankly, helped me meet a lot of guys. Even an '80s teen icon. Sadly, most guys I encountered were of the typical vapid L.A. fare, leaving me to kiss a lot of bottom-feeding mouth breathers before I actually met a nice, normal, gainfully employed gent (a qualification both for myself and most of the shows I worked on). And this got me thinking—what else did casting reality dating shows teach me about life and love?
10 must-click love, sex, dating and relationship links. Are "favorite children" more prone to infidelity later in life? [Huffington Post Living] The couple who crashed the White House to join Bravo's Real Housewives of DC. [PopEater] Must-read online dating stats: One in three women who meet men online have sex on the first date. [Huffington Post Tech] How to travel as a couple without killing each other. Because violence on vacation is no fun. [The Frisky
Every smart woman knows that making time for an annual physical is a commonsense priority for optimal health. If we were to do the same thing for our relationships, they would stay healthy and strong too. So, if you've never thought about it, I encourage you to think about it. What would your relationship checkup include? How healthy is your marriage? I think about it around the end of the year, as opposed to the first of the year when others are making resolutions for this, that, or the other. The end of the year really works well for me because I'm pensive, and very goal-oriented. Having specific goals for all of the important relationships in my life helps me to manage myself in these relationships—especially my marriage. Now, these aren't engraved in stone, but serve more as guides that help me in my desire to be intentional in my behavior rather than reactionary. A relational checkup is really nothing more than your intentional effort to stay positively connected in your relationship. And, one of the things you can do is to attend to how you talk together as a couple. This is a very powerful and protective strategy for your relationship. Including it in your relationship checkup process can yield big short and long-term results.
New dating site network Gotham Dating Partners launched a site uglypeopledate.com. But don't these sites just set people up for disappointment?
Don't believe what you read in magazines and Web sites for women. Well, except for this one. When it's me. Publications for women love to make you feel sh**ty about yourself, particularly when it comes to aging—as if it were a choice, and women who choose to let nature take its course are sad, harelipped bog creatures who are too busy listening to the wind whistle through their empty wombs to properly moisturize. Actresses who were once young and vibrant and adorable undergo grotesque surgeries to defy the natural process of senescence and end up with strange facsimiles of their former faces. (Meg Ryan's mouth and Lara Flynn Boyle's mouth should go bowling at an alley that allows weird-looking mouths to bowl at discount prices.) Well, I'm sort of sick of it. Yes, 20-something women can be vital and gorgeous, many of them with bodies at the nubile peak that our culture covets so much. It's not just the gorgeous groundstrokes that keep men watching women's tennis. And don't get me started on the grunting volley. But older women? They rule. For a ton of reasons. And they're sexy as all get out.
We were appalled to read that researchers are blaming Facebook, of all things, for increased syphilis outbreaks in the U.K. Last year, Durham, Sunderland, and Teesside, the regions where Facebook is most popular, reported four times more than the usual number of syphilis cases. In an interview with The Telegraph, Professor Peter Kelly, director of public health in Teesside, speculated that social networking websites have made it easier for people to meet strangers for casual sex.
After American Idol contestant Crystal Bowersox belted out "Me and Bobby McGee" we take a look at who Bobby McGee really was and the love story behind the song.
In general, I'm not really a jealous person; in fact, a recurring fantasy is to watch whomever I'm seeing with another woman (I haven't done that yet—I like keeping it in the fantasy realm). But maybe I'm more jealous than I'd like to think, because it's taken meeting several of his friends for me to assess them individually, to get to know them, before I feel totally comfortable. Some of them ask him for back rubs, and the first time I saw him take his hands to another girl's muscles, I can't lie: it bothered me.