Saturday, August 28, 2010

Friends and Neighbors

When I went to Nate's place last weekend, I got the chance to meet his best friend Seth.  Since I had had quite a few drinks in me by the time he came home, I don't quite remember the details of our time spent together but I remember having a very good time with both of them.

Yesterday, as the work day slowly came to an end, I received a text from Nate asking if I wanted to come over that night. It seemed a bit odd since he works the third shift (11:30pm to 8:30am) so I called him to find out what he meant; I thought he might be texting in his sleep like before. He said he'd been stuck on the phone with his cell phone company all day and hadn't had the chance to go to bed and was going to skip on work. I still had a report to finish at work and needed to go home to shower. I told him that I wouldn't get there until the 9 o'clock hour and that it would mean I'd have to stay over. "That's fine, you know you can stay over" he reassured me.

Well I didn't know it, but I guess I do now.

I arrived around 9:30 (not before receiving a handful of call from Nate asking me if I knew what time I'd be arriving. Cute, but annoying. I'll get there when I get there.) He was out on his neighbor's balcony, a girl named Renee which I had incidentally met last weekend also. They were outside smoking and having a couple of drinks, waiting for me to show up.

As soon as I walk into her apartment, she loudly greets me with "Hey beautiful!" She quickly makes me feel welcomed, offering me food out of her full fridge and freezer.

I barely have one frozen pizza in mine.

She quickly launches into a conversation, showing me pictures of her family, her past and becomes extremely chatty. As the drinks continue to be poured, Renee opens up more about her dating life and her new boyfriend who she's been with for a month. She becomes very friendly with me and offers me to raid her closet for clothes she will no longer wear. She asks for my number and begins suggesting plans for when her best friend comes to visit this weekend, including me in their dinner dates. Turns out Renee has only been living in Houston for a short while.

She takes me into her closet and has me try out a few items, when I notice a purple kimono. "Oh wow, that's my favorite color" I tell her. "Really?" she says, and pauses. She looks at me, and already incredibly tipsy, takes it off the hanger and lets me try it on. She then turns to me and says "I want you to have it."

"What....? Are you serious?" I ask her astonished.

"Yes. I never wear it anymore. But you have to promise to take care of it and wear it because it's been passed down in the family and been through the Korean War. My grandfather brought it back" she said.

I took the kimono, hugged her and thanked her. "I have a good feeling about you, and even if it doesn't work out with my new buddy here, we're still hanging out. Here is to our new friendship."

(I'm sorry the quality sucks- cell phone....)

We continued talking out on the balcony, having a few more drinks where I got the chance to loosen up some more and feel more comfortable with her. (I tend to tense up around new people who are very open and forward. As a result, I get really quiet and don't say much.) Assuming that I would be coming over this weekend, she invites Nate and I for dinner on Friday night. (Apparently she's a real good cook.)

Now, throughout all of this, Renee managed to compliment me- twice. The first happened to be when we were at the kitchen counter and she was discussing how she had told her boyfriend that she was happy to have gained weight over the years because she now had breasts. "She’s got some pretty big boobies" she said to Nate, motioning to me. I tried to brush it off. It reminded me of Gina Gershon's character in "Showgirls" when she compliments Nomi about her tits. While outside, I managed to lean my legs out onto the railing where Renee blurted out "You've got hot legs."

I don't know if I felt more embarrassed getting a compliment or the fact that it came from a girl....

Either way, it was pretty fkn sweet.

Friday, August 27, 2010

I've got you Babe

I haven't been called this in.... wow.... over 4 years.
True story.

(290 is a highway, and we were talking about how long the commute had been from his place to my work this past Thursday after spending the night there)

Chile, be strong (Fuerza Chile)

Earlier this year, Chile, the land where my entire family lives, suffered from one of the most powerful earthquakes in history. The 8.8 earthquake shook violently for nearly 90 seconds, and was followed by multiple tremors in the days and weeks after, with the  most powerful aftershock measuring 6.9.  At the time, my family in Texas was very concerned because we didn't have contact with any family member there. It took a couple of days for my brother to make himself heard, but overall, everyone was ok, and no one in our immediate family died.

Earlier this month, a gold and copper mine suffered a collapse, causing 33 miners to be trapped beneath the earth at approximately 2300 feet (700 m.) Over two weeks later, the first sign of life came through a pipe with the message

"We are alright in the refuge the 33 of us"

I can't even begin to tell you the euphoria we all felt knowing that 2 weeks later, the miners were alive, and most amazingly, all 33 were still in good health.

Time will test their strength as estimates have come through saying it will take up to 4 months to drill the hole, half a mile down, to reach them and pull them out one by one.

(Yahoo's article here)

Vamos Chilenos!

Monday, August 23, 2010

A drunk man's words are a sober man's thoughts

(Continued from "The Sleepover")

After making open-ended plans with Nathan to go ice skating this past weekend, I finally decided to text him 10 minutes before my shift was over on Friday to see if he wanted to do something that nights. 10 minutes went by..... then 20, and 30.

Ok, I think we're done....

It wasn't until almost an hour later that I got an answer, and while still sitting at my desk (blogging).

"Sure sounds good to me. I just need to be back around 1-ish bc my buddy Seth wanted to hang when he got outta work" he texted.

Well that.... sort of sucks, but whatev. I quickly called him back when I hear a muffled strain and stretch in his voice. "Were you sleeping?" I asked. "Oh wow, that was weird. I dreamt that you texted me and I replied an hour later." "Well you did, so did you still want to hang out" I asked. "Yeah yeah" he replied.

We made plans to go meet at his apartment and go to a steakhouse for dinner. We ordered drinks and discussed about our week since we hadn't talked at all. When our meal came in he said "You're welcome to stay as long as you want tonight, it's just that Seth is coming over and we're gonna play video games after he gets off work."

I thought it over but didn't answer. Did that mean he wanted me to stay over? I didn't see a problem with this, and felt invited to meet his best friend. We finished with dinner and went to a pub afterwards to have a few drinks. We talk more, and he tells me about his neighbor who also has a dog and how they exchanged keys in case they need to walk their pets. I give him a confused look and he says "Well, just in case I'm out, like spending the night at your place, she can walk Lady, and I can do the same for her dog."

Wait, you're.... spending the night at my place now? Um... ok.... that's.... I have to say, surprising to hear.

A couple of hours later, completely drunk, we made a run to the supermarket so that Nate could pick up more beer for his game night. We came back to his apartment and went over to the bar across the street for drinks there, again.

Now, through all of this, I begin to see a pattern: we are always drinking. And the problem I see with this is that I am a lightweight and don't know my limits. If you put a drink in front of me, I will drink it because I don't want it to go to waste and mostly because by the time I'm beginning to sip that drink, don't feel drunk yet.

After a short while, we came back into his apartment where I immediately crashed on the couch. Now, from here on out..... I can't remember specific details. Most of the evening ended up just phasing out, but I do remember a few moments. I don't remember seeing Seth for the first time and actually greeting him, but I do remember talking with him and laughing all together.  I remember him discussing his online dates and escapades. I remember waking up with a painful stomachache, with the need to throw up, and going into the bathroom and hugging the toilet, but not vomiting afterall. I remember falling down on my hands, and still feeling pain as I type this (as well as discovering a bruise on my upper thigh. How the hell did I get that??) I remember us crouched over the computer desk, watching SNL videos, and Nate saying "Baby" to me, and me doing a double take.

Why did he call me "baby?" Well, I don't know.... I think he was trying to get my attention to tell me something.

Eventually I went into Nate's bedroom and fell asleep. Later on in the night/dawn, Nate came into the bedroom to gently caress me and tell me that Seth was about to leave shortly. It was still dark, so I figured it was about 4 or 5 am. He then smiled and said "I wish you were still wearing that skirt" since I had changed into my track pants (that I always carry in my trunk for gym/pilates class.)

A few hours later, Nate crawls into bed and awakes me by gently caressing me. I can sense where this is going and tell him "You're doing everything right but I'm just getting off of my period." He sighs, smiles and says "I hate you" but continues caressing. I remind him again when he doesn't give up. I stop him and ask him "Are you sure? I can go check if you really want to do it." He responds with yes, and I proceed to go to the bathroom to find out that I am no longer on it.

I come back into the bedroom and ask him to put on a condom to which he just stares at me blankly. "Nate, where are your condoms?" He shakes his head no. "Nate, are you serious? Do you honestly not have condoms??" I ask him. "No" he responds.


At this point, I get a bit peeved. Seeing as to how he is still under the influence I shoot him an angry look and say "Do you mean to tell me that I'm going to have to do a condom run?? It's either you or me." With no answer on his behalf I reply "Well then, I guess it's me!"

At 7:30 am, I drive over to the supermarket, go into the pharmacy aisle to find it closed. I drive over to WalMart, find the box of condoms and head to the register.

This is embarrassing. It is so obvious what's happened here, especially this early in the morning, in my track pants, my hair all knotted up and my eyeliner running. Bullshit.

I come back into the apartment where Nate is completely naked, sprawled out onto the bed, erection lost. I throw the pack of condoms at him hoping to wake him up, and head toward the restroom. I come back, Nate is snoring.

Well then, I guess no sex here!

I fall asleep next to him, and am awoken a while later again for attempt #2. This time it actually went through. Then I realize he is still drunk, and the sex is going nowhere. I'm actually in pain at this point. It needs to stop. I get quieter and stop cooperating. He senses the point and climbs off and falls back beside me, asleep. A couple of hours later, slowly out of my buzz, I wake up and turn on the TV in the bedroom. Nate comes in and out of his sleep for the rest of the morning until we finally get out of bed around 2:30 that afternoon.

The rest of the day just passed us by as we watched TV all afternoon. Later that night, Nate decided to make dinner and we headed over to the supermaket so he could shop for groceries. I got a little concerned seeing as to how I needed to leave that night to head back to my mom's for babysitting duty on Sunday.

Around 10pm, Nate began cooking, and I fell asleep. I did manage to help him with prepping. Around 1:30 am, he was done. He'd made étouffée, which I personally didn't like because it was so spicy (he used jalapeno peppers).  I love it when guys cook, and apparently he can. At 2:30 am, my alarm sounded off, and I was on my way back home.

So that was my.... "out of the ordinary" weekend. It still hurts to walk a bit.....

Sunday, August 22, 2010

The sleepover

I'd been meaning to write about this date but had a lack of interest to.

Honestly, I wasn't sure how things were turning out with Nate, and didn't want to dedicate too much of my time to write about someone who wasn't going to be around the following week.

If I can remember correctly, the week after the first date, Nate invited me out to a very nice wine bar right by his apartment complex so we wouldn't have to drive. It was the first time for both of us, so we weren't exactly sure what to expect. We began tasting a white wine spritzer that tasted similar to a soda. I ordered chicken, he ordered tuna and had a relaxing time. By the end of our bottle, he decided to order a set of "flights" (wine samplers, typically about half the size of a wine glass) of 3 different red wines. Not to our liking as we soon found out, but fun to try out.

After dinner, Nate asked me if I wanted to go get some drinks at the bar next door, so we went to that. We continued drinking until the bar closed, and about $250 later, walked back home. Once there, I remember passing out in his bed, where, miraculously, no sex took place. The next morning, I woke up with a bad stomach ache and the need to fart so badly, but couldn't bring myself to. His bathroom was also right next to his bedroom and was sure he'd be able to hear the echo if I did, so I went into his closet instead.

I can't remember anymore what happened the following day, but I do remember leaving before 2pm because he had to go to sleep again before starting his shift at 11 that night. I went home, called my girlfriend to see if she wanted to hang out for lunch, and ended up making plans to go to Lake Charles, Lousiana to the casinos that weekend as a last minute ditch. I went home, took my online math test that was due, and packed up for the mini getaway. (I lost about $50 at the slots)

The following week, I suggested to Nate to go to a game of laser tag and go-karts. He said to come meet at his apartment, but after taking over an hour to get ready, and close to another hour to get there, decided not to go out once I got there at 9pm. I tend to get very tired early evenings because I start work at 8am. That, and I'm a grandma deep inside. We ended up just sitting on the couch, where we watched reality t.v. I will ADMIT without hesitation that we watched Jersey Shore and Fantasy Factory on MTV. And, kudos to Nate for letting me keep the dial on Keeping up with the Kardashians. Sebastian wouldn't have any of it. But, let's not compare, yeah?

Anyway, I left Nate's early the next Saturday morning because I had to go downtown to take my final for my computer class. Later on, I think I remember going to visit my friend for a few hours, until I came back home for the weekend and spent the rest of the time couped up at home, enjoying my first weekend off for the summer.

The following week, Nate and I didn't hang out because my father came into town with my sisters from their vacation in California; I always spend the weekend at home when he comes over. Later that week, Nate and I hardly talked and the late night texts didn't come through anymore.  After no responses, I texted him one last time to see if he had disappeared where he told me what his phone screen had shattered and he was unable to get all of his messages.  We talked a bit about our weekends, and we made half-assed plans to hang out the following weekend to go ice skating.

To be continued.......

Saturday, August 21, 2010

One year later....

I just realized that it is my one year blogoversary today.  What better way to celebrate than to summarize the beautiful, crappy, exciting, sexy, and sad things that happened since the inception (no, not the movie) of this Survival Guide along with the things I have learned since then.

A year ago, I was researching my first apartment, and was in a complicated open relationship with my ex-boyfriend Sebastian. Sebastian became a character in this blog and garnered the affection and approval of quite a few readers even though he was very difficult to deal with.  He had excess baggage from his previous marriage, a lot of which carried over into our time.

I didn't speak up enough in the very beginning, but in time, I learned to voice out my concerns and frustrations with the help and support of you, my readers.

Even though I still hold some anger towards Sebastian, it is only because the end came before I wanted it.  Sebastian had always been a gentleman and I can't badmouth him. Things didn't work out between us, but he was great, unfortunately.

During the year, I also managed to go to Europe for a dozen days and explore other cultures. I experienced new things with Sebastian, and visited new places as well.

I also managed to go back to school and continue with the prerequesites for Business Administration. I lost my job at the construction company, and was dumped by Sebastian within the same time period.

I had my grieving period and started dating again- most of which have not managed to outlast the dreaded 2-week period [sigh].

Since Sebastian, I became involved with a few guys where it didn't quite work out. I wasn't romanced and pursued and quickly lost interest in the potential candidates.

I began a new job which showed me how to be part of a bigger team and feel much more appreciated than before. I learned to like and dislike the benefits of being single.

It's been an eventful year so far, and I really have no idea what's on my plate in my personal life from here on out.

The only thing I've got looking up for me is my next planned vacation during Thanksgiving Break: Chile and Peru, here I come!

On a special note:
To my subscribed readers and frequent visitors:

Thank you in the USA to : L.A., Modesto, Alameda, San Fran, Austin, Bourbonnais, Chicago, Racine, New York, Brooklyn, Pinellas Park, Lutz, Greensboro, Bellingham, Minneapolis, Dayton, Nashville, Atlanta, Portland, Phoenix, Midvale, and of course HOUSTON.

Canada: Saskatoon, Toronto and Don Mills

England= my favorite group of people!!: London, Wigan, Bootle, Liverpool, Canterbury, and Manchester

Norway: Bergen and Stavanger

Germany: Cologne, Berlin and Munich

Australia: Melbourne, Brisbane, Sydney, Adelaide

and special recognition in : Ireland, France, the Netherlands, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Spain, Greece, Russia, Poland, Philippines, India, Japan, New Zealand, Argentina, Brazil and Chile

This blog is for you.
Thank you.

Monday, August 2, 2010

What I really mean when I say the following

The dating scene has been.... exciting to say the most. I've met some great guys, funny, intelligent and all respectful- real gentlemen, thank God. About half of them went as far as the third date, while the other half never made it past the first.

It got me thinking the other day while I was reading an article on Yahoo about the things guys will say, and the truth behind those expressions. I figured I'd add my two cents in to contribute my own version of encrypted statements.

What I say: We really shouldn't
What I really mean: If I didn't stop drinking after one beer and I'm in your apartment, you can bet that I REALLY WANT TO, but I don't want to get burned like I did the last time around. I'm only sleeping with you if you're my boyfriend. SO at least pretend to give me that.

What I say: I just don't think we clicked
What I really mean: You aren't attractive enough for me to overlook that and be sold on your personality alone.

What I say: You really need to visit California/Vegas/any major place I've been
What I really mean: I'm hoping we can date long enough so that we can take this trip together.

What I say: I've had sex with 3 guys
What I really mean: I've had vaginal sex with 3 different guys. You'll figure out the rest in time when I'm more comfortable talking about it with you.

What I say: What's your longest relationship?
What I really mean: Are you more for long term or short term?

What I say: Are you and your ex on speaking terms?
What I really mean: How did your romance end? Will I consider her a threat in our relationship; Will she make appearances or be brought up a lot in conversations?

What I say: How are you with kids?
What I really mean: Can you get along with younger kids, prefereably my 10-year twin sisters so one day we can all go out together.

What I say: Heeeey, haven't heard from you in a while.
What I really mean: Where the @$%& have you been and why haven't you called until now?!

What I say: So what's a regular week like for you?
What I really mean: I want to know your schedule so I can tell if you're avoiding me when you don't call because you're "busy" all of a sudden after the first date

What I say: I had a great time. We should do this again sometime.
What I really mean: Call me tomorrow

What I say: Well, thank you for dinner/coffee. It was nice meeting you.
What I really mean: Yeah, this isn't going to work out.

What I say: Oh my God you're huge.
What I really mean: OMFG you're HUGE.:)

Sunday, August 1, 2010

How did I get this mean?

There is a colleague, Rick, near my work area who is in his late twenties and will casually catch up with me during the days. Yesterday however, I realized that I'd most likely ruined that new-found friendship.

We are both sarcastic, but I admit that I can be overly to the point of being very mean, short and rude. At least, that's what it seems to be to others, but deep down inside, I mean it in the most twisted playful way. Rick knew about my date this past Friday with Nate, and asked me how it had gone on Monday.  I filled him in on the details and we joked around about the things that had happened.

The next day, Rick told me he'd spent just as much time with one of his colleagues talking about life, as I'd spent it on my date with Nate (10 hours.) My intention was to be playful and quickly shot back with "Don't even think about comparing my date with yours." He tried to correct himself as he walked off and somewhere along the way mentioned that it hadn't been a date because she was married.

The next day I went to see him at his desk to ask him to finish telling his story and without looking at me once said "I noticed you have an attitude that's rather negative. You appear to be one way, but completely different at other times. You act very similar to my ex and the lady who used to have your spot, and I don't like people like that."

I was shocked. He'd set me straight, and I quickly realized my wrongdoings. My stomach sunk, so low and I could only muster "Well I'm sorry I offended you" as I hurriedly walked away. In the distance I could hear him say "No, it's not that you've offended me it's......." as the words trailed in the air.

All day yesterday, the thought just lingered on in my head. I felt so bad and embarrassed about what I'd done. Late last night, I wrote a note offering my apology with the idea putting it in the box with one of the blueberry muffins I needed to buy him back, considering I'd accidently taken it from his stash earlier this week. I slipped the note into my purse this morning,  and was prepared with my apology.  I figured he'd either accept the appology, or worse just let it sit and refuse, but I would have at least tried.  Once at work, I went through  my purse to get a dollar and the note.... which wasn't there.

What the hell? Where is it? Man this sucks. Everything happens for a reason? God works in mysterious ways? Bullsh*t!

Earlier this morning, Rick quietly greeted me at my desk, but quickly returned to his work area. Later on, he spent quite some time talking with my cubicle roomate and left, not before bringing back the book I'd suggested for reading last week. He said "I don't think I'm going to have time to read it" as he placed it on my desk.

Ouch. Cold shoulder maybe? 

Alright, well here's to attempt #2 tomorrow morning on the apology letter. I better not screw this one up again cause not talking is making things tense and very awkward.

Plus, take note- this might actually be the first time a woman has admitted that she was wrong, and he was right!