Perhaps it’s this time of year or maybe just this time of life but I can’t seem to spend any time with my girlfriends lately without the conversation somehow turning to the topic of dating/relationships/marriage. The last time this happened was this past Friday night. I thought I was in for an evening of light, fun conversation and buffalo wings… and well, at least I got the buffalo wings. Being the only single one at the table put me in a precarious position–they wanted my input, but how much is my input worth anyway? My perpetual stay in single-dom, as I shall refer to it for lack of a better term, gets mixed reactions from strangers and friends alike. When I told my dearest friend, he told me it was a gift from God (he is a priest after all.) There are those who find it to be downright horrifying and others who think I’m just lying. When I finally convince them that I am, indeed, telling the truth they usually exclaim some variation of the phrase “But you’re so pretty!” My least favorite reaction comes in the form of patronizing advice from those happily dating someone and believe that makes them dating gurus.

One day it was suggested that I start taking this whole dating thing seriously by a good friend… At first I tried listening to all the advice being thrown at me… after all, what do I know about it all? Quite obviously a lot less than any of my friends do. So upon being advised to do so, I quite grudgingly read the silliest book ever. Yes, I shamefully admit that I read He’s Just Not that into You. From that I learned that if a man is not hunting you down like an obsessive maniac, then quite frankly, he’s just not that into you. Then there was a host of other pieces of advice… don’t start more conversations with a guy than he does with you, talk less, talk more, do your hair this way, come here, go there, stop talking to him, start talking to him, if someone asks you out say no, tell him he looks nice, don’t wave like that, it’s all a game and you need to learn to play it, what did he say and what did you say back? spin around counterclockwise three times while singing a Mariah Carey love song (ok, so maybe I made up that last one, but you get the point.)

It was quite enough to drive a girl mad. When it got to the point where I questioned saying hello to others, I decided this insanity needed to stop. If that’s what “taking dating seriously” looks like then I’d rather stay single till the day I die (which is most likely what will happen anyhow.) This was a giant, nasty mess that I needed sorted for my peace of mind… so what now? Stay tuned for the answer tomorrow…