The Unicorn’s Cousin and Prince Charming

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Skeptics and cynics will tell you Prince Charming is not real. These same people will claim to have seen a unicorn.

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High above the tree line in the Santa Cruz mountains is a secret trail known to very few people. Children are warned about playing, hiking or exploring this region. A few years back, two 12-year old boys rode their mountain bikes as high as they could, found the brambles and the felled  tree trunks to be too difficult to traverse, and continued to climb the hills on foot. Feeling bold and invincible, they pressed on until was close to dusk. There was more shade than sunshine and it was cold. They agreed to turn back when they heard a thrashing and crashing in the bushes ahead of them. At first, they thought: wild turkeys. Then, they heard the loud whinny of a horse. In a flash of bright light, a massive animal reared on it’s back legs and charged towards the boys. They fell to the ground in pure fright. And both boys shrieked. They saw the unicorn!

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The boys learned pretty fast, if you want to be teased, ridiculed and made fun of all through middle school – say you saw a unicorn – you can deflect an urban legend with quick wit, lies and sneers.

Urban Legend or Real: Prince Charming?

Women around the world are on the look out for their Prince Charmings. Raised on a diet of sweet fairy tales, girls dream, doodle, pursue and hope for the day, ( sing it with me )

Someday Your Prince Will Come.

Fact: There  are more princes than unicorns in California

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Look before you leap into long distance dates

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Leaving on a Jet plane?  Think Twice: Long Distance Dates 

Katie was smitten. She met Romantic Robert on a popular dating site. His photos, funny observations and pictures of his new Porsche overshadowed the fact that he lived two time zones away. She said she loved his writing and all his pictures. She shared many of his passions (cars, Mad Max and 600 count sheets) Truth be told: she was hot to trot. Katie had been in and out of too many sour relationships and was ready for fun, romance, and passion.

After a handful of emails, they spoke on the phone. He was a big flirt, and he said, “Come to Atlanta, Sugar – I’ll show you the town.” (Notice: he didn’t say, “Let me buy you an airline ticket and I will graciously pay for your hotel room.”) Her friends told her to slow down, to ask more questions, to Google the guy, get to know him – more than via text messages, emails and a few phone calls.

She wanted to go the distance

She had tons of frequent flyer miles, her cousin lived outside of Atlanta, and she was confident that Robert was all that he claimed to be: single, a long distance runner, a gourmet, a CPA, and a Tulane graduate.

Take a page from this book

Katie’s expensive lesson is a lesson for one and all. She threw caution to the wind and flew to Atlanta against all advice from friends and colleagues. He met her at the airport with flowers, which didn’t disguise the fact that he was much heavier than his photos; he drove a Ford truck (the Porsche was in the shop) and took her to TGIF’s for dinner.

He drank two Long Island Teas while she sipped a Diet Coke. Initially, Robert was a charming Southern gentleman, by the second drink he was a boor. His active flirting with the waitress was the crowning blow. She excused herself, and on the way to the ladies room, asked hostess to call a cab to take her to her hotel.

She graciously informed him that she was going to her hotel and she would call in the morning. He protested. He suggested she stay at his house. He wanted know the name of her hotel. She kissed him on the cheek and left. The long, expensive cab ride to her hotel gave her plenty of time to dissect her experience with Robert.

Her friends had been right. She had moved too quickly and made an expensive mistake. She called her cousin and arranged to see her the following day. She would send a polite “Dear John” email to him and end that chapter.

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Top 5 Tips for Long Distance Dating

Long distance dates are rife with challenges. Be safe, be smart and plan ahead.

  • Always stay in a hotel. Can’t afford a hotel? Don’t go.
  • Never, ever stay in the other person’s home.
  • Upon Arrival: Take taxi /rental car to get to and from the airport. Never, ever get into a car with someone you’ve never met. Can you say Ted Bundy?
  • I’ve got a secret: be sane: There is no reason to reveal the name of your hotel until you are 100% certain your date is a Boy Scout. (Trustworthy, loyal, honest…)
  • Keep Safe: It’s a date, not a fashion show. No jewelry required. Keep your valuables in the hotel safe. Or at home.
  • Tell All: on every first date – in San Francisco – or out of state – be sure to inform several friends/family where you are going, staying, and the name and address of the person you are meeting. Yes, even coffee dates. Tell a friend.

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Can you Afford this Date?

You do the math. Figure it out: roundtrip plane ticket, taxi to and from hotel, meals, and hotel charges. Then tabulate how much time are you willing to spend on a long distance romance? Katie used to say “All the good men in San Francisco are taken.”

She changed her mind before she landed at SFO.

Lesson learned. Look ( Google the Guy/Gal) before you even begin to Leap.

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He said, she said- crossed wires?

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He said, “Your hair looks nice.” She thinks, “I just paid $95.00 and he doesn’t like it.”

She says, “Those flannel shirts are really retro.” He thinks, “Damn, she thinks I look fat.”

He says, “Let’s grab a salad at Whole Foods tonight.” She hears, “He thinks I look fat!”

She purrs, “Do we have to watch the Warriors again tonight, Honey bear?” He thinks, “What are you nuts? Miss the  Warriors game? What wrong with her? I picked the wrong girl!”

(She planned a totally romantic, champagne infused, sexy lingerie, evening – to celebrate their six-month anniversary.)

 

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“Men marry women with the hope they will never change. Women marry men with the hope they will change. Invariably they are both disappointed.” Einstein

 

 

Counting Voices

Flirting! That’s what I am talking about

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Welcome to my world.

I was hired for a quick three-month assignment at Anonymous X to work my magic and <pouf> disappear. It’s what I do, this year. It’s been fun – I’ve met some very fun people.

Until I got here.

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This is what my world looks like.

Men (boys) glued to their machines with not an iota of social graces. I grew up in the south – with manners. Everyone I know, from home, has manners. We greet one another – we flirt, we engage, we talk, we go out for drinks. We go  places – not just bars. We aim to leave work early – usually.

Where are the Fun People?

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Whispering never works

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Dating 101: If you want to get noticed…you are going to have to kick it up a notch and sing your own praises…

There is no reason to bellow and trumpet your myriad fabulous qualities.                                                        

Your manners will speak volumes.

Guys, do you hold the door open for a date? Do you walk on the outside? Do you stand when she returns to the table – or when a friend approaches? Do you offer to pick up the tab or graciously split it with her? 

When it comes to conversation, do you ask questions, listen and carry a conversation?

Remember, on a first date you don’t want to monopolize a conversation – however, you only have one chance to make a first impression. Touting a few of your better qualities isn’t against the rules. Bragging is.

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Ladies, remember: you get one chance for a first impression.

 

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Psst! I’ve got a secret…don’t tell anyone

 

We are six girls who grew up together…

We attended the same college- lived in the same dorms and have remained close friends for over 20 years. We exchange birthday gifts, Christmas cards, floods of emails and celebrate ourselves at an annual “retreat” at Yosemite.

We share one dark secret that no one ever discusses, anymore.

Sophomore year, we all attended a kegger at one of the frat houses. Campus police had warned every girl on campus  not to drink the nefarious Frat Punch. We heard too many nightmare stories and as a result, we drank our home-made yummy pink Lemonade/Vodka slushes throughout college.

At the Homecoming warm up party we ran into the twins, Tim and Thomas from Seattle. They were cute, outgoing and very  popular. They joined us – and we went to three parties that night. One of the twins had too much to drink and got a little weepy. Siobhan and I sat with him as he rambled about this Catholic priest. A bad priest from his hometown. We spent an hour listening to him. Long story short: the sicko priest had been abusing lots of the boys in town. We listened with great sorrow and compassion. Something happened – campus police busted the party and we all hugged and went to our respective dorms. We talked long into the night.

The Campaign Commenced

Siobhan’s dad was a Los Angeles police officer and her uncle was some higher up in the Catholic faith- a bishop or arch bishop. The next day, she was on the phone with her dad and the rest of us researched Father NoName. In no time, we had his name, parish address and phone number. Three of us are English majors and our fingers used to fly over typewriter keys.We started a stealth, anonymous campaign to get this priest “in trouble.”

Within four weeks, we wrote, multitudes of letters, called the right people, contacted newspapers and contacts of contacts and Father NoName was removed from his parish. Was possibly arrested. The trail grew cold.

You can google Father NoName all day long. You wont find him.

We made him disappear.

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