I am done.
Kat and Denise and Marcie and I were sitting around during down-time yesterday, talking about how difficult it is to date these days. Kat's recently engaged, Denise is happily single, Marcie is in a happy partnership with another woman, and I...well.
Dr. Dweebo walked past and cocked an ear. Later, he pulled me aside.
"Your problem," he began, "is that you seem too smart. That's intimidating."
The person who is intimidated by me, in the words of a Jezebel commenter, is probably also intimidated by loud gusts of wind and squirrels. In high school, I was voted "Most Likely To Become A Muppet". I am clumsy, silly, and have big eyes that tend to google around in circles during serious moments. Most of the time I'm unaware of what my face is doing. I trip over things. I drop food down my front. If I'm intimidating, so is a teacup poodle puppy.
Besides that, Dr. Dweebo, *you,* the critical care attending, telling *me* that I "seem too smart" is making me want to prove to you just how smart I am.
For instance, you should pick one: expensive, fashion-forward Italian sunglasses, Velcro-fastened shoes my seventy-four-year-old father would not be caught dead in, or a badly-groomed moustache. You can't have all three and expect to be taken seriously. Oh, and wash your lab coat. It's grimy.
And "seem too smart"? Seem? Seem?
(Y'know, the more you type the word "seem", the less like a word it looks. But anyway.)
So I should "seem" dumb? I should let you make all the jokes, even when you lob a ball so gently over the plate that I can count the stitches as it glides past?
Looking around at myself today, after I rewired an outlet and fixed the toilet and dug up a couple of garden beds in the twenty degree weather, I decided to bag dating. Frankly, I'm not sure dating at nearly-forty is a good idea. I'm certain that if an accomplished, intelligent person who has a good grasp of one of the most complex subjects on the fucking planet thinks I "seem" too smart to land a man, I don't want a man.
The alternative is just too depressing. If I lose X amount of weight, grow my hair to Y length and keep the grays under control, wear Z brand of makeup and perfume, then I can land a man.
A man who, to be blunt, prefers childish bullshit and emotional back-and-forthing with somebody who *seems* feminine and delicate, but who's actually a passive-aggressive leech who will suck the joy out of life. Men in their late thirties and early forties seem to want women who either love Teh Dramz or who are glorified trophy wives. I don't need that. If you want somebody too weak to stand on her own two when presented with the perfect opportunity, then to hell with you.
People who are afraid of egalitarian, reciprocal, *intelligent* relationships need not apply, and they're not. So the subject is tabled until I hit my fifties, or until some miracle occurs and the Universe works a change in everybody involved, including me.
I can and do kill my own bugs and mice. I can and will rewire a lamp, put up a ceiling fan, and fix a hinky outlet. I can and will replace my own car battery. Although I've never changed a tire, I know who to call when the *^$&*( lugnuts are too tight for me to loosen by myself. I make my own money, am planning for my own retirement (with Airstream trailer, outfitted in the latest retro fabrics and cabinetry!), and pay my own bills. I use subjunctive case correctly. I have close friends of both sexes and all ages from fourteen to eighty. I think I'm doing okay.
Actually, I'm disappointed and bitter just at the moment. But that will change. And, at the end of the day, when I'm less disappointed and no longer bitter, I will still not be dating somebody like Dr. Dweebo, so it's a win all around.