My girlfriend Mary has the best morning ritual I’ve ever seen. She gets up early in the morning so I often miss it, but I was lucky enough to sneak a peek this morning. Mary is a classically trained opera singer and has an appreciation for all music. What a lot of people don’t know is that she also loves to DANCE! Every morning she puts on her ear buds and dances away to the melodies from her ipod. It is sooo much fun to watch. When she’s in her dance mode she is “IN IT!” Nothing else exists in the world. It’s just Mary, her music, and a living room waiting to be ceremoniously boogied down every morning. I LOVE watching her be-bop her way around the house, eyes closed, not a care in the world, allowing herself to move and shake freely with reckless abandonment! Sometimes I think she loves dance even more than I do.
Nobody knows this about her and she’d kill me if she knew I told you so let’s just pretend she doesn’t read my blog entries and keep this between us. These are just some of the things I love about Mary. She loses socks on a daily basis, she loves terrible B-movies (if you don’t believe me, check out her favorite- Ice Pirates), she cooks amazing Argentinian food (meaning anything with beef, rice, and more beef), she loves internet spam (for real), and she has the brightest smile I’ve ever seen. Mary has an ability to brighten the mood of everyone she comes across. Being a masseus/esthetician is the perfect calling for her because she has a very warm and soothing presence. But enough of the gushy stuff. Let me tell you how we met. Fun story.
I had made a vow to my sponsor when I had six months clean and had gotten involved with the wrong girl, a girl I met in rehab (yes,off to a promising start I know) that I wasn’t going to date, sleep with or even consider courting (we don’t use that word enough- courting) another woman for 12 months. So I didn’t! At 18 months clean I decided to put myself back on the market. Little did I know that I woud have to suffer another 6 months of celebacy. Turns out it’s not so easy getting laid when you’re dying and on oxygen. Chicks don’t dig the O2 tubing. Except for the cougars! Could’ve gotten me some MILF action. I’m sure it has something to due with a disturbingly deep-seeded cartaker desire, A chill just ran down my spine. Needless to say, I passed on the mommy lovin’.
Mary and I actually met through online dating. eHarmony as a matter of fact. I highly recommend them, they have an excellent selection! That’s not the funny part though. I know there’s this stigma about online dating but I think it’s pretty cool. It’s a great way to meet new people that you would otherwise never meet on a regular daily basis. And as I’m sure you can imagine, going to bars to meet chicks isn’t really an option for a recovering addict.
So online dating it was! I was pumped! I created a profile on eHarmony, answered all the questions and completed all of the exhaustingly repetitive and somewhat annoying steps to try and get me some lady action. At one point during the registration process my brother, Chad asked “So are you having fun yet?”
“Nope,” I answered.
He responded with, “I know. It’s stressful, painstakingly nerve-racking, and well… dating.” Very well put.
I sent requests to several women awaiting replies. Sadly, three months went by WITHOUT EVEN ONE RESPONSE! How was that possible I thought? Fuck eHarmony! I was talking about it with Chad and I showed him my profile. He took one look at my picture and said, “Are you freakin’ crazy?” There I was in my picture smiling with an oxygen cannula allowing me to breathe. “Why did you post pictures of yourself on oxygen?”
“I wanted to be honest and forthwright from the start,” I said. Being that I was a recovering addict now trying to practice spiritual principles on a daily basis, I thought honesty was the way to go. Yeah, turns out, honesty is overrated.
“There is nothing honest about the first steps in dating,” Chad said. He is often both comical and profound at once. I wanted to believe in a world that wouldn’t discriminate against disabled young men on oxygen but in all honesty, if I were healthy, I would skip right by a woman on oxygen when online fishing as well. That doesn’t mean we live in a cold, cruel, superficial world. It’s biology.We’re attracted to physical signs of a positive future with a partner and therefore are turned off by signs of a lack of future.
“It’s time to change your game a bit,” Chad said. “Tomorrow we will take pictures of you without the oxygen. I will push you to the top of the Mt. Rubidouox hike (2 miles) in a wheelchair and take pictures up there as well. It will give you an outdoorsy appearance.” My brother could see the torn expression on my face. It felt… immoral. “Don’t worry bro. You do what you gotta do. The first step in online dating is pretty much all about deception. Let a girl get to know you first online and on the phone and then you can drop the bomb on them. Get ’em hooked first!” Did I mention my brother’s a freakin’ genius?
Within 24 hours of posting the new tubeless (not topless) photos I received 3 responses! Well hello ladies, papa’s back in the game! I took Chad’s advice and got a few dates but nothing stuck. They pretty much felt like pity dates. “Poor guy still deserves to have at least one date with me,” is what I’m sure they were thinking. Then I started chatting with this awesome chick named Mary. I laid on the charm real thick until she thought I was the wittiest guy in the Inland Empire. I started to get really excited about this girl but in the back of my mind I was still saying, “Don’t get too extatic, you haven’t dropped the Adam-Bomb yet!” We talked and texted for days, responding to each other’s texts every few minutes.
It was truth time. Shit or get off the pot. I decided to seal a coffee date with her first. Step into my web of deceit won’t you? It was a Thursday and I asked her out to a local coffee house called “Back to the Grind” for Saturday. She agreed and seemed very enthusiastic. Now came the part where I tell my secret, she pretends not to pity me and then non-chalantly “forgets she has plans on Saturday, but she will text me to reschedule.” I really dug this chick and definitely didn’t want it to end that way. Ok, no more stalling. Time to get shot down! These are the texts that transpired- verbatim:
Me: There’ something u need to know. I’m on oxygen right now temporarily. I’m in need of a lung transplant due to a lung condition and am at the top of the list at UCLA right now. I apologize for not telling u earlier but it’s been my experience that if people see a pic of me on oxygen, they don’t see ME. I teach and choreograph with O2 and everything. This is a deal-breaker for some people and so it’s ok if it’s a problem for u. But I’d love to get a cup of coffee with u if it’s not.
Thursday, December 6, 2012, 1:26 pm
Let the belly butterflies commence! Now remember, we had been texting each other back and forth every few minutes for over a week now. I anxiously awaited Mary’s response… 10 minutes pass- nothing. 30 minutes- zilch. 45- nada. After an hour of holding my breath (or lack thereof) still no response! I started to get really pissed off. “Seriously,” I thought. “Not even a shootdown via text? What a bitch!”
As fate would have it, Mary had gotten swamped with work at that very moment and had not yet seen my message. 70 minutes after I had texted her I heard that glorious bling from my phone. A response! My heart raced and stomach sank as I read it:
Mary: Hey wow… that’s a biggie. I hope it works for you. (Ouch) So coffee on Sat what time? (Awesome)
Thursday, December 6, 2012, 2:36 pm
Yep, this was one cool chick. I knew I had stumbled onto something special. The end of this conversation was as follows:
Me: In case u have trouble finding me (on Saturday), I’ll be the guy w/ the oxygen tank.
Mary: Well now I gotta think of something to make myself stand out… hmmmm. Feather boa?
Me: Good call. Much classier than sporting a propeller hat I suppose.
Mary: Damn that was my second choice…
This was a VERY cool chick. I’d hit the jackpot.