Thursday, March 15, 2018

A spark on the ocean

I've just returned from an 11-day Caribbean cruise and had the time of my life. I knew I would, because how could I not have an incredible time? (Assuming there are no outbreaks of the dreaded Norovirus or something). After a prolonged and intense high, boy am I crashing hard. Real life is dull and boring, and I'm fighting the urge to pick up and change my entire life in favour of something exciting like cruise ship work. But no, I can't. I gave up my life for the tropics once before in my lifetime and I just can't do it again. Which makes this post-cruise depression even harder to manage.

We stopped at five ports, all of which were new countries added to my life's travel list. I was with my mom and other family friends, all folks I get along great with. I wasn't even meant to go on this cruise, having had to sub in for my father at the last minute who couldn't go for medical reasons.

And now I have to write this experience down while it's still fresh, because I don't want to forget even the tiniest detail. Everything was fantastic for all eleven days, but it's the last 3-4 that I feel compelled to document. I'll get to transcribing the other cool stories eventually, but this one needs to be written down stat. I want to preserve the exact dialogue as it happened because it's burned into my brain now, but it will fade. So in the interest of remembering everything, fair warning - this post will be loooong.

This is one of the most amazing, romantic, passionate things that has ever happened to me and I need it preserved in tact so that when life feels boring or sad I can re-read it to myself and remember the unbelievable time I had on the ocean, and remember that when you least expect it, life can throw you a curveball that will blow your mind.

It's likely the kind of story that is once in a lifetime and I will probably never beat it. Nothing will ever come close to this, which is why I'm experiencing such a depression now that it's over. Right now it feels like a highlight of my life's narrative that will never come again. But who knows...

I should note that I have lost 85 pounds since my last blog post (another post on that coming eventually, because it was quite a journey), and so my life is very different than it was. I look like a new person, my confidence is high, and men are noticing me like never before. All of these changes definitely contributed to my enjoyment of this cruise.

So, this was a quasi-family vacation, but I still set out on the cruise kinda hoping to meet someone. Just an innocent flirtation because why not? I'm young(ish) and single, and the world is my oyster. But I knew there was a slim to none chance. Sharing a cabin (and most of my time) with my mom diminished the possibilities. Also an 11-day cruise attracts much older folks, and the odd honeymooning couple, not an abundance of single 20 and 30 somethings. Nonetheless, I had my eyes wide open in case of any potential flirting opportunities.

The ship was full of entertainment, all the time, everywhere you went. We saw the early show in the theatre (always song and dance or comedy), had late dinners, then roamed in search of anything else that might be going on. So many times in the first few days we walked through the piano bar and saw a young guy playing beautifully and singing songs at the request of the crowd. It was a lowkey scene to observe and we passed it up several days in a row. The back of my mind went "Oh, he's good, and he can really sing," but it didn't really register and we moved on.

One night, with nothing else to do, we decided to sit and watch. It was an intimate setting and I was maybe three feet from him that first night, sitting slightly behind him. He turned, we made our first eye contact, and he handed me his songbook so that I might browse and make a request. At this distance, I first registered that he had a beautiful smile, and amazing brown eyes. Okay, so this could be interesting.

I submitted my song request on a slip of paper, wrote my name and included a smiley face for good measure. I was hard to miss, being the only person under 50 in the room, other than himself, but I wanted him to really notice me. And he did. I saw my song request bypass the pile he already had in front of him. He played my song and I loved every second of it. This dude's talent was just, like whoa. The crush had officially begun to develop.

Friday, March 24, 2017

Lesser Known Weight Loss Goals

I recently stepped on a scale and almost slit my wrist right there in my mom's bathroom. I had reached a number (I ain't fuckin' tellin' it to you!) that I swore I would never EVER get to. But there it was, staring me in the face. It was a cold, hard reality check telling me things had gotten out of control, and denial wasn't going to cut it anymore.

And so I have embarked on my very first real attempt to lose weight. I've been overweight since about age 20. I thought I was a fatty at age 15, but looking back, that was not the case. That's just when the mental/emotional body issues began.

Now I'm 30, turning 31 in April. The "I'm young and have lots of time, I'll bounce right back once I start trying" excuse is no longer appropriate. I'm getting older. It will require more work. My skin will tighten up just a little bit less than if I'd done this at age 22. But that doesn't mean it's too late. It has to happen NOW.

Letting so much time go by with this problem unchecked means that losing this amount of weight is now an even bigger undertaking. In fact, this was part of the denial in the first place. I didn't want to weigh myself, because that would mean I would face an actual number, and then have to do the math to find out how much I needed to lose. Doing this math meant admitting to myself that I had reached one of those scary amounts to lose.

It's not like when those cute teeny girls say face-punchworthy things like "I need to lose two pounds so I can wear my bikini!" Ugh no, fuck you. This is serious business. I knew the number deep down, but I didn't want to face it, because it meant there was a mountain of work ahead of me.

But alas, I have now embarked up the mountain. Because if not now, when?

The Obvious

Losing weight/getting fit has obvious advantages. We all know about vanity and health. Basically, fat people don't want to be fat because it looks bad, it affects our romantic prospects, and everybody likes to be physically attractive. There's no beating around the bush here. We want to shop at normal stores, wear cute clothes, have better sex, and more confidence. Health is top of the list too, and we all know it. Being fat is bad for you - for your liver, your heart, and even your emotional well-being.

What I'm here to explain today are the lesser known goals of people who have to lose sometimes upwards of the equivalent of another human in body weight. There are things that have never crossed your mind if you've never been chubby, bulky, plus size, heavy, or just plain fat. There are struggles that big people deal with that you've probably never even considered.

My goals include more than just "be slim." There are some crazy specific things that I've been missing out on, and I'll know I've made it when I can check some of these off my list.

So buckle in. Here are just some of my goals.

The Not-So-Obvious 


1)  Sittin' like a lady

I haven't able to cross my legs comfortably in a very long time. Look at this beautiful sight.

This is not within the realm of possibility for me. My thighs get in their own way. See the way these legs are both pointing down? That's a thing of beauty to me. Currently, I can do this kind of shit:

It's so very unfeminine that I can't even find a photo of a woman doing it. Only dudes. And even when I'm crossing my legs like this, I'm holding on to my own ankle for dear life because it's slipping away, screaming "Let me go! This is unnatural!"

Goal - legs crossed, both feet pointing at the floor.

2)  Farewell to Chub-Rub

I started with legs, so I'll stick with that for another moment.

The dreaded chafe. This is the opposite of thigh gap. This is the constant friction of thigh-on-thigh from walking, running, sometimes just standing around. It hurts. It burns. It has literally caused me an open wound on a few occasions that required first-aid.

This is such a common problem that there are products for it, like powders and creams, leg bands, etc., but nothing has worked for me. Summertime is deadly for my poor thighs, so I end up in long pants, no matter that it's 30 degrees out with insane humidity to boot. This gets into catch-22 territory. "Sorry, cute guy I just started dating, I'd love to go on a hike, but I just can't because ummm, well, I need to wear shorts so as not to overheat and die, but my thighs might start a forest fire if they're allowed near each other." And thusly, exercise is not achieved.

Goal - Thighs may still touch, but ideally with less surface area so as not to cause 
pain or discomfort or smoke.

3)  Pick me up, please! 

This is one of those moments you see in romantic comedies and other... ahem... videos. There's nothing more libido killing (for me) than feeling bigger than my partner, or that my size overwhelms him in some way. Which is why the following is a major super ultra fantasy of mine:

It may seem simple to a never-fat person, but this right here is the epitome of sexy for me. Feeling small, cute, and light enough that a man can pick me up effortlessly.

Instead, I had a boyfriend who, in 2011, picked me up and proceeded to fuck up his back. No joke. It's still messed up to this day. That was a confidence-crusher I'll never forget.

Goal - To be swept off my feet, quite literally. Without causing someone a hernia.

4)  Mirror, mirror, I don't want to hate you

The other day I got out of the shower and decided to floss. Don't look so surprised, I have my shit together in a few areas at least.

I took the floss off the counter and, without thinking about it, turned from the bathroom vanity and faced the wall. The following thought actually went through my mind:

"Gee it would be easier to floss if I could see what I was doing!"

No shit, you moron. I had subconsciously turned away from the mirror. It was a reflex, an instinct. That's how deep-seated body negativity becomes.

So instead of quickly averting my eyes from my own full-body reflection and just flat-out turning away from myself, something akin to:

 I'd much rather have a healthy relationship with the mirror, like:

Goal - Work the mirror, hunny. WORK IT! 
But seriously, just looking at myself with satisfaction would be nice.

I'll leave it at four goals today, but trust me - there are many more that go beyond "look good, feel good."

If you've struggled with your weight, you know what I'm talking about. In the online weight-loss community these are known as Non-Scale Victories, or NSV. These are the tiny moments that change your life for the better that go beyond the number on the scale, a smaller dress size, and less acid reflux. It's about reclaiming tiny joys in life that you didn't even realize were joys until you couldn't experience them anymore.

Well, no more waiting around and accepting that I can't have those things. THEY SHALL BE MINE! OH YES, THEY SHALL BE MINE! MUA HA HA okay I'll calm down.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

This week in online dating: Domination, doofuses, and doodoo

With a huge sigh of resignation, I downloaded the dating apps again. I'm currently using Old Faithful - OKCupid, the questionable but quick Tinder, and brand new (to me) Bumble, in which women must send the first message.

I am begrudgingly back in the dating pool, so I might as well have a good time laughing my ass off at the people out there and the ways in which they use these services. Also, I might as well share them with you, and shame a few while I'm at it.

Note - all of the screencaps I share with you are original content. They are messages sent to me, on my personal accounts. I do not source them from the world wide web. This is the real, sad reality of my online dating experience.

EXHIBIT A: That escalated quickly 

Whatever happen to "hello?" as an opening line? How about easing me into a conversation and then gently finding out if I'm in to BDSM, or if I'm a sub or a dom? As you might have guessed, I'm pretty open-minded and down to talk about sexual preferences when it comes to vetting potential real-world matches. But there is some etiquette involved and there exists a fine line between an actual discussion and scummy, unsolicited sexting.

And this is the latter. Hence, my response. #FEDUP

EXHIBIT B: Your an asshole


Here's a candidate for worst account on Tinder. I didn't match with this person and we didn't exchange messages, but I just had to screencap his profile to show you an excellent example of what NOT to do.

Firstly, I didn't crop out his face. He had only this one photo, and didn't show his face. Also, if you're gonna show only a little tease of your face, don't make it your goatee. That's a personal ew from me, but in general it's poor form to hide your appearance within a dating app based solely on appearance. Fucking DUH dude.

Secondly, and most importantly, his horrendous cringe-inducing write-up. This one hurts me real bad, folks, as a grammar-lover and also as a decent person.

So we start off with a blanket-statement that gives us a peak into his mind. Deep down, he doesn't really like women. Ladies, beware declarations like this one. So we're all the same, are we? CORRECT! We're all the same in that NONE of us are swiping right on your chauvinist ass.

Then we round it all out with a barrage of grammar and spelling errors, just to up his wow-factor. Plus that little gem tagged onto the end about a severe limp.

This is a big left-swipe from me, buddy. #NOREGRETS

EXHIBIT C: YOU, that's fuckin who


So this happened. I don't have much to say about it except...

EXHIBIT D: So bad, almost good


This is one of my favourites in recent memory. I'm sure he got that line from somewhere on the internet, but I don't care. It made me laugh. Obviously I didn't reply, but I've shown this to LOTS of people. So thanks, dude.

OKCupid Pro-Tip - an opening line that evokes imagery of shit is not a good opening line. #IPREFERCOTTONELLE

 BONUS CONTENT: Shady Shakespeare

*rolls eyes so hard blood vessels burst*

Better luck to me next week.