Manscaping…and Other Party Conversations

5 07 2011

Fireworks from Gasworks Park

Happy Belated 4th of July everyone! I hope everyone had a great weekend.

Today, I am being featured in the Simply Solo Spotlight. After you read this post, go check out my guest post over there. Thank you to everyone who participated in the Guest Blogging Poll.  “ My Mom Posts a Profile for Me” had won when I checked the results on Saturday.

My more conservative readers should be forewarned. Today I will be covering some topics a little more risqué than my usual banter. Cover your eyes, wait for a couple of days when I will be providing a recap of my date with Man #19, or proceed with caution.  Your choice. Just don’t say I didn’t warn you.

So this is what my life has come to:

For many years, Fourth of July meant driving down to the reservation to buy some fireworks, hosting barbeques in the backyard,  shooting previously mentioned fireworks off with the kids, and hoping nothing caught on fire.  When we moved to Seattle in 2003, we started heading down to Gasworks Park with a picnic and watching Seattle’s annual fireworks display.  This year, with one son on a trip with his grandparents, one in college, and another teenager son too cool to hang out with me, I thought I may end up watching the fireworks on television while eating lentil soup.  Pathetic.

I scored a last-minute save, however, by attending the birthday party for my friend, Dora, on Sunday, and meeting a fabulous gay couple who invited me to their annual 4th of July party.  (Actually, Dora invited me, by saying that I should go with her, and the gay couple agreed.)  That was that.

Now, I’ve been hearing about this party for the past five years, but I was never able to go because of the family obligations mentioned above.  I jumped at this chance.  Not only have I attended far too few parties this year, but this party is rumored to be FABULOUS on top of boasting great views of the fireworks on Lake Union.

Dora swung by my house to pick me up last night around 7:30 p.m. and we headed over to the party.  She said, “You’re going to fit right in. There are so many different people there.  It’s like the whole gay community is there. They have people in their house they don’t even know.”

I usually don’t worry about not knowing people. If I know at least one person, I’m fine.  I’m not particularly shy, and gay boys tend to love me.  Maybe it’s my eye makeup. Maybe it’s my shoes. Maybe it’s the fact that I have a slight potty mouth. Maybe it’s that with my low, alto voice and the fact that I stand 6′-2″ in heels I remind them of a drag queen. I don’t know, but I tend to quickly make friends with the gay boys.  I wasn’t worried at all about not knowing anybody.

When we arrived, the house was packed. Dora and I made our way out to the terrace where we found a couple of other friends of Dora’s.  We sat together, ate, drank, and visited until it was time to go outside to watch the fireworks. 

The fireworks were good. I heard some people commenting that they weren’t as good as years past, but I’m never one to enter into such debates. I enjoy public displays of fireworks, and to tell you the honest truth, I usually can’t tell the difference from one year to the next. Personally, I’m just glad I no longer have to worry about grabbing the garden hose or ducking for cover should a home-launched explosive go astray.

A few of us talked about which fireworks we liked best, and expressed the usual sound effects, “Oooo, Aaaagh,” and “Pretty!”

When the fireworks finished we headed back inside and Dora and her friends headed back to the terrace.  Having surpassed my one drink a week limit, (I had two) I was looking for something non-alcoholic to drink, and rumor had it that I would find something in a cooler that was situated at the north end of the terrace.  As I approached the cooler, I heard a young guy talking to an older guy and I quickly realized that I might have just stumbled upon two of a small minority of straight men at the party.  The young guy was saying to the older guy, “You gotta shave that shit, man.”


“Yeah, it doesn’t matter if it’s a man or a woman, I don’t like to go down on anyone who’s not shaved.” (Ok, maybe bisexual men.)

At this point, I couldn’t help actually looking at them, and I realized it might be the most interesting conversation I would have all night.

“Are you talking about manscaping?” I asked.

“Yeah,” said the young guy, “What do you think?”

“You need to shave that shit, man, or at least keep it tidy,” I exclaimed, looking at the older man who was about my age, and adding my two cents.

“See, I told you,” said the young one, obviously drunk and obviously relishing the fact that he was right.

“Like shave all of it?” the older guy asked.

“Well, you don’t have to make yourself look pre-pubescent, but you should keep it tidy,” I said.

It was at this point that the young guy divulged that he was shaved from his torso all the way down to his balls.

“Here, check it out,” he said, pulling his shirt out at the bottom, inviting my to feel his chest.

I reached up  underneath his shirt, felt his abs, and both pecs, checking for any piercings and any trace of hair. None.

“Oh, geez!” grumbled the older one.

“Is that stubble, or do you need to exfoliate?” I asked.


I removed my hand from the boy’s chest, and turned to the older one, “It’s just more pleasant if there isn’t a bunch of hair down there to deal with. Plus a guy can make his dick look longer if he simply gets rid of the half-inch of nappy pile at the base of it.”

“Well, I don’t need to make my dick look bigger,” exclaimed the young one, “I just don’t want to put a girl through that, going down there with a bunch of hair. It gets in your mouth.”

“Well, not only that, but hair traps smells.  If a guy has hair and he’s wondering why he’s not getting blow jobs, maybe he needs to question how it smells down there.,” I said.

“I think things were different in the 80s,” said the older guy, “I always thought the perception was that if you shaved you weren’t as manly.”

“Well, I think you’re right, that hair wasn’t as big a deal back then, but it is now. I like a little chest hair, but you have to keep it under control,” I said.

Sensing that I might be closer to the older guy’s age than his own, the younger one suddenly asked me how old I was. (This younger generation and their manners! I tell ya!)

“Well, I have a 23-year-old son in college,” I said.

“Get the fuck out of here! You look like you’re about thirty-four!”

“Thank you.”

This launched the younger one to reveal that he was 24, his mom was 47, and he had been with two women older than his mother, one 48, the other 49.

“I struggle with the age thing,” I said, “I’m recently separated and I just can’t see going out with anyone younger than about 35.”

“Well, if you’re recently separated, you SHOULD go out with someone under 35,” exclaimed the older one.

“I just don’t know that a young guy would know what he was doing.”

This was the WRONG thing to say. The younger one suddenly went on a diatribe about how he had been with these older women. It was all about foreplay, and he knew how to do that and other things. There were some finger movements to illustrate his technique and he was REALLY selling it.

“You’re right about foreplay,” I said.  He started talking about going down on a woman, and although I’m not ready to turn my blog x-rated, I will say that he almost had me convinced that he might know what he was talking about.

“Have you ever seen Nina Hartley’s How to Eat Pussy Like a Champ,” I asked.

He had not.

“Well if there is one take away from that instructional video, it’s this: Licking sucks. Sucking rocks.”

“Really?” said the older one. He was quickly making himself look like a completely bumbling, uninformed idiot.

“Yes,” I said, and I started to describe some of the mistakes men commonly make when travelling downtown.  (I won’t bore you with the details.)

After a little while longer, I separated myself from the conversation, and went and found Dora. She and her friends were just about ready to walk back to the cars, so I ditched my glass of ice having never found my non-alcoholic drink and headed out with them.

I said goodbye to the hosts. They said that they thought I was FABULOUS and that we needed to hang out again sometime. I got home well after midnight, briefly took Thor out, and then Thor and I went to bed.

As intriguing as sexual experimentation with a 24-year-old may be, I’m not ready to go there.

For now, I’ll stick with the fireworks I know. Thank you very much.


Happy Birthday to Me!

26 04 2011

I celebrated my 39th birthday for the fifth time yesterday.  Overall, I had a pretty good day.  Here’s a little recap.

First of all, those bitches over at sent me an email early in the morning, wishing my a “Happy 43rd Birthday!”   Yeah, they did.  That’s what the subject line read.  The body of the email said:

“Still single?  Come check out your matches and find the men who want to meet you on your birthday!”

Yeah, right.  This was simply a thinly veiled attempt to make me feel shitty about being in my 40s and single again.  Like I’m going to go to their website and waste my whole morning clicking around looking for a birthday date.  Not gonna work on me, assholes!  Nope.  I certainly wouldn’t want to fuck up my own birthday by going on a first date.  Major holidays and special events are for friends and family.  Thank you very much. was actually the online dating site that I had decided to sidestep back in February.  When I had started to set up a profile, my computer was so inundated with ads and pop-ups, I couldn’t even search their site.  I had never even set up a profile, and I was still getting spam from them.  No Ok birthday email, OkCupid.  Ok, junk mail.

The only good thing that came out of the OkCupid email, and I’m not even sure you can call this a good thing, was that it reminded me that I needed to go to my and profiles and add an extra year to the ages of the men in my search parameters. 


My search now extends to men in their mid-50s.  I’m not really sure I’m ready to go there.  I don’t even have crow’s feet yet. (I inherited my grandmother’s good skin.  The moist Seattle weather helps too.)  I may have to re-examine how I feel about being a cougar.  Maybe for every year I add to the upper age limit, I could add one year to the lower age limit.  I think that’s the strategy I’ve seen some men using.  I don’t know.  Nothing like a fucking online dating profile to make you feel old!

But anyway, around mid-afternoon, my eldest son brought me flowers and a pint of Ben & Jerry’s Everything but the…, my second favorite flavor.  He no longer lives at home, and I don’t get to see him as often anymore as I would like, so it was nice to hang out for a while before I had him drive me downtown to my birthday celebration location.  (I think after hauling your children around to soccer practices, Little League games, and cello lessons, the least they can do when they grow up is chauffeur you to drinking establishments and then take the car away so you can’t drive home.)  My son and I had a rather loose plan that perhaps I would call him when I was ready to go home, but I had $2 in my wallet just in case I needed to hop on the bus.

After my blue post last week, my girlfriends had rallied and thrown together a quick birthday Happy Hour invitation.  We met at Boka and the drinks started flowing around four.   I got started with a smokey martini, but then moved on to some of the other vodka-based concoctions that Boka had on their menu.  Their Roman Holiday cocktail is good, but I think the smokey martini was the best of the lot.  The scotch in it makes it flow down to your belly, swirl around, and make everything feel warm.

My girlfriends and I had a great time, doing what women do when we get together…talking and laughing.  We talked about some issues I was having with a past date who was trying to be too controlling.  I will write more about this in my next post, but basically, my girlfriends and I agreed that he needed to be cut off cleaning and swiftly!  NEXT!  We talked about my blog, and, of course, that led to my other friends telling their online dating horror stories. (I’ve invited one of my friends to guest blog about what has to be the most outrageous online dating story I have ever heard.  If she doesn’t eventually write it, I may need to.)  We also talked about sex, deal breakers, teenagers, upcoming events, and trips we want to take with each other in the near future.

My son had gone to dinner with his girlfriend, so I used my $2 and caught the bus.  As I was riding home, I felt a deep sense of contentment.  Like all of the good holidays and parties in the months since my husband left, I was reminded of that saying, “Men are like buses. A new one will come along every 10 minutes,” …

…but your girlfriends will be there for you when you need them.


Man #6, Baby, Baby

20 03 2011

I had to think long and hard about the nickname I wanted to give Man #6. I did a little research at Urban Dictionary under the various terms referring to cougars, considered calling him Cougar Bait for a moment, and, ultimately, decided I did not like referring to him as cougar anything.  I figured since he was two years within the limit that would make me a cradle robber according to the “How young is too young equation”  (see the equation above) I was in the clear when it comes to cougardom.

Besides, it’s not like my second Craigslist date Friday night was a strapping, 21-year-old college student.  He was 30 with a hot, little body, but his baby face made him look as though he had just graduated from high school.  What made it worse was that when I had walked into Quinn’s on Capitol Hill I had seated myself at the bar, and then when Man #6 arrived, he sat down with a barstool in between us.  I’m sure this made it appear to everyone at the bar that I was a cougar stalking some tasty, young meat. 

Vacant barstool or not, I suppose things probably would have appeared that way to the casual onlooker regardless.

Oh well.  One of my friends scoffed at my reluctance to be a cougar.  She said I’ve “earned” it.

Baby, Baby and I had a great time and a good conversation.

We talked about the age thing, in fact.  I have never felt that I could be a cougar, because I started having children young, at 20, which means that my eldest son is 22 years old.  This means that the above equation of half your age plus 7 doesn’t really work for me.  The resulting sum for that equation of 28 would place the minimum age of my date closer to my son’s age than to my own, and that makes me uncomfortable.  I simply feel it is disrespectful to my son.  Some people might think I’m foolish for thinking that way, but that’s the way I see it.

Since I’m twenty years older than my son and eighteen years younger than my mother, I prefer to stick to an age range of 32 to 51, ages halfway to the ages of those closest to me.  There are plenty of people who find love with individuals who are the same age as their children, (Donald Trump, for example) but it’s never been my thing.

Conversely, it is difficult for me to date anyone who is closer to my mother’s age than to my own.  This has less to do with age and more to do with the fact that, in terms of my joie de vivre, I’m a fairly young 42.  I’ve met too many 45-year-old men who couldn’t keep up with me. Let alone someone in his mid-50s.  It could happen, I suppose, but it would have to be someone who didn’t need a cabinet full of medicines and a special diet to keep going.

But about the date…

In a telephone conversation before the date, Baby, Baby had uttered the expression “uff da,” which instantly made my ears perk up.

“Did you just say uff da,” I asked.

It’s not something you hear very often.

It turned out that we are both half Norwegian, and this launched us into an entire discussion on ancestry, the wonders of lefse right off the griddle, krumkake at Christmastime, cardamom, and the dangers of lutefisk.  Not many people can speak my food.

Like me, Baby, Baby had gotten married and started having children at a young age.  He was divorced by age twenty-five, however, and I have to say, hands down, he possesses the most horrific yet hilarious divorce story I have ever heard. He arrived home one day and opened the bedroom door to find his wife tied to the headboard with a ball gag in her mouth and one of his friends standing there with a tennis racket.  I had nothing in my arsenal of messed up stories that could top that one.

We also talked a lot about dating in general, how there’s too much pressure to get serious right away and how this shows up on each side of the equation in various ways.  Baby, Baby recounted a story about a woman in her early twenties who, three weeks into a relationship, started talking about how much he should spend on her engagement ring.  She’d thrown a mug at him when he tried to explain that he didn’t yet feel that way about her, and he said this was the reason he tried to stay away from women under 25.

“It’s like they have a screw lose.”

This is just one of the many reasons younger men are attracted to cougars.  A woman over 40 has her shit together, has her own life, and can go buy her own diamonds if she wants.  I’ll save my rant on the wedding industrial complex for another time.

To close, I will just say that it was my second very enjoyable, no pressure Craigslist date in three days, and to top it off, although there is nothing romantic there, Baby, Baby and I just might get together to make lefse.


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