Archive for June, 2013

Ron is a real person who dated my sister. A Ronulian is someone who possesses Ron-like qualities. A Ronduh is someone who is dumb enough to put up with them. Here’s today’s story – Happy Ronday!

RonKiki had been working as a contractor through a temp agency for several months but was starting to have attendance issues.

When her staffing manager reached out to her about this, RonKiki confessed that she was a bit homesick and asked if she could apply for assignments in her hometown through the same agency. Although highly irregular, the staffing manager agreed and RonKiki took a week off from her current assignment to go home and see what jobs she could get.

The agency was able to present her to another assignment, and after a brief interview, she was offered the position. All she had to do was pass the background check and the drug test. This was great news!

RonKiki had already been through an extensive background check and fingerprinting for her current assignment, so the agency knew she would pass that. And she went in to her drug testing the next day, so everything should be in order soon.

Except. . . she failed her drug screen.

When asked about it, RonKiki didn’t flinch – she totally admitted that she did drugs and figured she would fail. RonKiki was stunned when the agency informed her that now she wouldn’t be able to return to her current assignment either.

But they don’t require drug tests!” she wailed.

That’s right,” the manager explained. “But we are your employer and now we know that you have failed, which is a violation of our policy.”

“You guys are just being mean to me on purpose.” She declared.

Yes, RonKiki, the law is a mean, mean thing.

And We Called Him . . . Fish Lips

In online dating, there were usually 2 kinds of guys you talked to: ones that lived close and you could realistically date, and those that lived farther away but you chatted with anyway.

JJ lived farther away.

He seemed like a nice enough fellow. He worked in data analysis, had pretty accurate spelling, and wasn’t one to ask for naughty pictures or cyber-talking. He had his own place, but lived farther away (about 4 hours one way).

I had been dating with no real connections, and JJ was always a welcome distraction. After what seemed like several months of casual chatting, JJ proposed that maybe we meet halfway for a movie and a bite to eat. It seemed like a reasonable request.

I was pretty sure he had said he was 5’9” when we first started chatting, but now his profile said 5’8.” (I’m almost 5’10” barefoot, and more like 6’2” in heels). I joked about this, and that’s when he admitted he was more like 5’7.” Not that I was going to cancel a date over height, but y’know.

He had picked out a Chinese sit-down restaurant near a movie theater, and given that our date was going to consist of mostly sitting, I took a chance and wore my knee-high black boots rather than my more height appropriate flats.

When I arrived, he was already seated, so we did the awkward half-standing hug and then I slid in to my seat. He was awkward also at small talk – something I hadn’t noticed much in our emailing or phone calls. Then again, I tend to be chatty enough by myself. When I asked about the movies, he suggested we go to the mall instead, so we could chat more and get to know each other better.

I am not a mall girl. But I tried to be a good sport, and so we rode in his car the 2 miles to the mall and began to walk around. At this point, a few things became clear: JJ may be 5’7”, but he had back problems and therefore stooped over making him more like 5’4” or 5’5”. So in my high-heeled boots I towered over him by 9-10 inches. Also, can I add – malls with slick marble floors? Not a fan.

So he shuffled and I skidded around the mall, not really stopping to look at anything. We might as well have been reprobate mall walkers. I suggested we sit and chat in one of the conversation areas set up around the mall – but again, he didn’t have a lot to say – he just smiled and stared at me a lot. Finally, I spotted a mall cafe and announced I was going to get a coffee. We sat down across from each other and he announced that he was going back to school in Oregon. To get his degree in fermentation science so he could open his own brewery. I recognize that college and beer go hand in hand, but had no idea you could study it. It was the most interesting part of the conversation. And then he just stared and smiled again.

Desperate, but not wanting to be rude, I finally confessed that I needed to get back home to read a book for the book club I ran. It was a lame excuse, but legitimate. He nodded and smiled and we walked back to his car.

He fiddled with his keys without putting them in the ignition and looked down at his lap. Then he looked up and smiled and said, “I had a great time” and leaned in for the kiss.

I admit, I melted a little inside. It was sweet. So I leaned in as well. And then . . .fish lips. Like a fish sucking for air at the top of the fish tank, JJ’s lips brushed against mine – ever moving, barely touching, just puckering and pursing against the air and my face.

And then the brain started going: How long do I have to stay like this? If I pull away too fast, he’ll feel rejected. If I stay too long, he’ll think I like it. How long is enough? It was so bizarre and weird, it was hard not to smile. I wanted to laugh, but it seemed cruel. I counted to 5 and then sat back.

The smile on my face must have made him think he’d done well. A part of me wondered if I should have told him or taught him something different. Should I do a favor for the next girl? But then again, if I tell him, would I just make it that much worse? I said nothing.

As he put the car in drive, it occurred to me – we still had to drive to my car and that meant another goodbye. How do I avoid another fishy encounter? I decided the best defense was a good offense, so when we arrived at my car, I swooped in with a kiss on the cheek, thanked him for everything, and bolted out of the car.

For an hour I drove south, that fishy feeling on my lips. I made an emergency stop at Rocker’s work.

“I need you to remind me what a good kiss feels like,” I explained. “His kiss cannot be the one left on my lips when I go to sleep.”

Thankfully, the doctor was in and soon my lips had happy memories of the day.

When I returned to dating a few months ago, JJ was on OKCupid again (still?). I didn’t contact him, he hasn’t contacted me. And I may always wonder – has he left his fishy ways? This blog may never know.

A Ronulian Story: The Lump

Ron is real and the inspiration for the Rondays.  Ronulians are Ronlike.  Ronduhs put up with them.  Happy Ronday!

My friend Dave is a very big-hearted guy, and last year when a new friend of ours, Malcolm, was relocating to the area, he offered to let Mal move in as a roommate.

Everything was great at first, Mal found a job and was doing really well. Then Mal had an injury and was laid up on the couch for a couple of weeks trying to recover. Only, Mal started enjoying being laid up so much that he didn’t return to work, just sat like a lump on Dave’s couch. So much so that he actually carved out a butt-shaped permant dent in the couch. He would actually watch whole seasons of tv shows on Netflix in one sitting – even watched whole series from that position – so we started referring to Malcom as “the Lump.”

Not that Lump wasn’t looking for jobs. He’d tell anyone who’d listen about all the jobs he’d applied for. I actually work for a staffing agency, so I tried to give him some pointers about job-hunting, resume writing, and the like. I never went so far as to offer him a job though – because I didn’t think he would be able to transition me from friend to “boss lady.” It’s not like I hid it from him, I just avoided bringing up that I was hiring.

However, Lump came across one of my online job postings and excitedly messaged me on Facebook. In his head, just knowing me got him the job. I politely promised to review his resume but explained that we were a little slow at the warehouse.

A week or so went by, and I had been scraping the bottom of the barrell for new temps to hire for the warehouse. And feeling guilty, not for Lump’s sake, but for Dave’s, I decided to pull up Lump’s online application and see what I could. Only, I couldn’t find it. . .

I messaged Lump on Facebook and told him I couldn’t find his app. Lump went by a few different nicknames, so I thought maybe i had his real name wrong, or was spelling his name wrong, or something. He messaged back the correct spelling and even copy and pasted the text from our website confirming that he had applied. I looked again but still couldn’t find it. Not having time to mess with it, I moved on and hired some other people. Another week or so went by and Lump was getting Lumpier. The couch cushion was getting flatter. Poor Dave was getting more and more stressed out.

Finally, against my better judgment, I decided that I would find that application if it killed me – and give Lump a job – just to get him off Dave’s poor, oppressed couch. I searched every way I could (understand, I had hundreds of online apps to look through) and then finally decided to go back and manually go through each online app. Still nothing under any version of his name. Finally, I decided to go to just the day he first contacted me and open every online file from that day.

AND THEN I FOUND HIM!

His name on his application? Charlotte North Carolina.

With all the hundreds of applications that boy filled out – can you imagine if every one of them was filled out so ineptly? No wonder why he wasn’t finding a job.

Happily, by the time I found his application, Lump had decided to move out of state to mooch off, I mean, live with other friends.

And now, whenever we talk about Lump, my ex-boyfriend calls him by his new nickname. . . Charlotte.

Like A Moth To A Brain

The hardest part about constantly putting yourself out there is knowing that every time you do, you may stumble and fall. I do that a lot. In my eagerness to chase that which is good, sometimes I stub my toe or bruise a knee on the sticks waving the red flags.

This is the case with the knight. I’ve had to take a huge step back and turn and head off in another direction. It hurts – there are things about him that I enjoy tremendously. He is a talented writer – and wrote wonderful emails and short stories. He would cross his arms on the table and make this face and his hair would fall this certain way . . . and it would just do things to me. We have so much in common, and he reminded me of things about myself that I might have forgotten. He even took me on a picnic in the park – and I got to sit for hours enjoying the breeze on my face, watching the ducks and geese fly and swim, and just “be” for a bit.

But there are certain paths I have been down before, and even though I might be better at navigating the rocky trail this time around, I just can’t bring myself to go there again.

“Personality draws you like a moth to an open flame . . .” Rocker observed.

He’s right. The most attractive thing to me about anybody is their emotions and how they connect to them: twinkling eyes, animated enthusiasm about things or ideas, passionate intensity; raw sadness, shy appreciation, deep concentration. The recognition that the person I am talking to is more than an automaton, an operating humanoid. That they are not just keeping me in the lobby of their soul, but actually letting me see and maybe walk in to the cerebral rooms of who they are and really understand what motivates them.

So it’s back to the drawing boards for Joey. I’m talking to 2 new fellows – one from PlentyofFish, one from OKCupid. An email also arrived with a special deal on eHarmony – it was so good, I decided to give it a try for 3 months. Maybe guys who pay to meet me will be different? Course, I’m paying to meet them too, so that raises the bar. Last time I was on eHarmony, I met Tide Boy – it cost me $238, but I found a friend for life and those are priceless, aren’t they?

I keep telling myself that.

Ron is a real person and the inspiration for Rondays. A Ronulian is someone who is Ronlike.  A Ronduh is someone who put up with Rons. Happy Ronday!

Sharon was an engineer I worked with back when I was a document control specialist for a government contractor.

Every week, the engineers had to submit this excel spreadsheet report to my department. And every week, Sharon would have a problem getting her spreadsheet to work.

Now, I’m going to show my age a little here, but back when Sharon and I worked together, our computers were still using 5.25” floppy disks. So every week, I would put a copy of the excel spreadsheet on a 5.25” disk and give it to Sharon. She would do her report, print it out and turn it in. Then next week she would try to access her disk, and the file would be corrupted.

My boss and I couldn’t figure out what the problem was, so I was sent to personally deliver the disk to Sharon and make sure it worked. I watched Sharon as she opened the file and entered her information. I watched her enter and save the spreadsheet. I watched as she printed it out. I watched as she took out the disk. I made her put it back in and try to open the file again. I watched as the file opened up without any problem.

“Isn’t that the way?” she joked. “It always works when someone is standing over your shoulder and watching.”

I laughed with her. Then I watched as she took the disk out of the computer and stuck it on her metal file cabinet with a magnet for “safe keeping.”

“Uh, Sharon?” I began. “I think I figured out the problem . . .”

A Ronulian Story: RonDonna

Ron is real and the inspiration for Rondays.  A Ronulian is someone who is Ron-like.  A Ron-duh is someone who puts up with him.  Happy Ronday!

During pre-wedding counseling, the officiating pastor made it clear to us that there was to be NO flash photography during the more sacred parts of the ceremony (prayers, readings, vows, etc.) He also informed us in no uncertain terms that he would not tolerate anything intrusive to the ceremony, and was not afraid to stop the ceremony until said distraction stopped.

My future (ex) husband and I looked at each other and said: “Donna.”

Donna was his older sister. She was a tiny woman who still believed that frosted blue eye shadow up to your eyebrows was in, and that polyester would never go out of style. She fussed a lot, and did not think rules applied to her. Plus, she was an amateur photographer and we knew she would think nothing of flashing through kingdom come.

So I devised a plan. I asked my sweet, quiet cousin Mark to take the photos, and asked Donna to work the video camera. This was the perfect solution: no one’s feelings would get hurt and the pastor would not reign down fire and brimstone.

On the day of the wedding, I had only one request: I didn’t want to know what time it was. If I needed to go somewhere or do something, my maid of honor just told me – never mentioning the time, and never letting me see a clock or a watch. “Let’s leave for the church now!” “Let’s go put your hair in rollers” “Let’s get our dresses on” It was wonderful – I didn’t get edgy or stressed. We got dressed in the nursery of the church, and my maid of honor was helping me do my hair and put on my makeup. This was the first time even a flitter of nervousness started to appear as the moment grew closer.

My (ex) husband’s mother and sisters and niece came over to where I was getting dressed to say hello, and I said hello back – even though I couldn’t see them because the MOH was putting on my eyeshadow. When I opened my eyes, there was Donna’s face – TWO INCHES FROM MINE.

“Hello,” she said.

I jumped back with a screech and closed my eyes again. “Sorry, I just need to get ready. Can you back up a little?”

Next thing I know, the entire nursery is empty except the maid of honor and me. Guess I scared them all away. Now I really was panicking. I just “yelled” at my future sister-in-law on my wedding day! Greeeeaaat.

But I took a deep breath and tried to return to the peaceful, ignorant bliss from before. My bridesmaids returned and we all headed upstairs to the sanctuary and one by one walked down the aisle. The ceremony started and everything looked beautiful.

Then I saw her.

Donna was not with the video camera. No, she had somehow delegated that duty to her brother, and was now walking around the church flashing pictures. I looked at my (ex)husband with wide eyes – but he had evidently done shots right before the wedding (gives new meaning to shot gun wedding) and was very . . .happy.

Donna kept inching her way up the aisle. Oh my god, she wouldn’t. But here she came. Closer and closer.

And then. . .she disappeared.

I was trying to pay attention to my wedding, but I could not fathom why she would leave the sanctuary.

Until I saw her.

Directly behind the pastor, she suddenly re-appeared. She had found her way to the choir loft behind and was now weaving through the choir pews, just 10 feet from the pastor, who was giving his sermonette.

Desperately, I tried to do a psychic mind meld with my eyes to beg her to stop and think. I mean, it was all over the programs – “No flash photography during the sacred portions of the service.” There was even a sign at the entrance to the sanctuary. I had mentioned it to her. It was all over. Oh my god, why?

She raised her camera. She focused in on us, and I tried to mouth to her “No!” without the pastor seeing. She . . .she . . .she. . .

Flashed.

The pastor stopped, mid-sentence. The church got dead quiet. No programs rustling, no children talking.

Like Linda Blair in the Exorcist, the pastor’s head seemed to turn towards Donna, his body hardly moving. He stared at her for a long moment, and suddenly she felt the whole church’s gaze upon her.

She backed up in to the pew, almost falling over. She grasped the camera in front of her chest with both hands, as if for protection. And then as suddenly as she appeared, she was gone again.

The pastor calmly turned his head back towards us and picked back up right where he left off as if nothing had happened. People shifted and sighed and the normal white noises returned. The flowers in my bouquet stopped shaking.

And Donna didn’t use her flash for the rest of the ceremony.

Amen.