Moving Again (Maybe)

 

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Iron Mountain, San Diego, 3/31/17 – I have hiked this mtn four times now.

I’m moving to Pasadena!

Maybe.  I think.  Perhaps.

On my company’s internal job posting website, I found and applied for multiple jobs.  Sure, I have a job now, in the beautiful city of San Diego.  More accurately, I’m updating internal processes while I wait for a program to pick me up, which would be the equivalent of hiring me, even though I already work for the company.  Basically, I can stay where I am and continue to get paid, or I can look for something else in the same company.

Still with me?

So I looked for something else.  Like in my dating life, in my work life, I’m always looking for something better.  Unlike my dating life, in my work life, I found it.  The job is in Pasadena, northeast of Los Angeles.  Pasadena is awesome on many levels:

  • The Rosebowl (famous for the football game, though the huge rose-covered floats are amazing as well)
  • CalTech – a center of learning.
  • CalTech – where the guys from “The Big Bang Theory” TV Show work.
  • Jet Propulsion Lab – NASA and CalTech founded JPL to work on space projects.
  • The Planetary Society – I visited and stood in the CEO’s office. Seriously, the office manager Chelsea was very generous with her time, and gave me a tour, which ended in Bill Nye’s office.  I touched a table which once sat in Carl Sagan’s office!!!
  • Adjacent to LA, which has many companies working on Space projects, including SpaceX!

If you’re not nerdy enough to follow all of that, it boils down to: Pasadena is heaven for nerds who like space.

I’m a nerd who loves space.  Therefore, Pasadena is my Heaven-on-Earth.  And I get to move there!  I applied for a position, and the hiring manager invited me up for an interview, which went GREAT!  I’ll be working for a female team lead and a female project lead, who report to another female.  Go Girl Power!

During the interview, the hiring manager said, “We have three jobs that you’re qualified for, and all three managers want you on their team.  They’ll explain the jobs, then you’ll get to pick one.”

WAAAAAAITT a minute!  I get to CHOOSE from three AWESOME jobs?!  Ya, buddy!  Without revealing too much about my work (that’s not really the point of this blog), the jobs were:

  1. What I did for the past 10 years, so I know that I can do it and do it well.
  2. What I’ve done a little bit of, and what Gala Pear does; a stretch for me, with new challenges.
  3. A job that would use my master’s degree and build on what I’ve done in the past.

I listened to the managers describe each job, knowing that I really could do any of them.  But #2 stood out to me.  I’d get to walk around, talking to different people on different teams, solving problems and writing up reports.  There would presentations in front of managers and experts.  The work would be challenging and keep me on my toes.  I’m so excited!

The team lead led me to meet another team lead, and said, “I like that you have STEM activities on your resume.  I like inspiring the younger generation, too.”

OMG this woman shares my passion for STEM?!  I am going to LOVE this job!

My interview started at 9 a.m. on Thursday.  At 9 p.m., a job offer was in my email inbox.

After returning to San Diego and spreading the word that I have the job, my friends encouraged me to have a going away party.  I planned it for the following Thursday, because my boss wanted me to start the Monday after that (just over a week away).  I spent the weekend going through my magazines, taking donations to Goodwill, and looking at Pasadena houses on the internet.  I told my San Diego realtor that I was moving, and she put me in touch with a Pasadena realtor.  I’d find a house there in no time.

“Whoa, buddy!  Not so fast!” said Fate.  I can’t imagine that God would put the brakes on at this point; I prefer to envision a gremlin, who stole the car which is my LIFE.  A green-scaled, evil-smiling, wicked little gremlin who thinks that f-ing with my happiness is funny.

This is what happens whenever I get excited about damn near anything, whether it’s a new guy or this new job.  Like Keith, who seemed amazing until he started talking about himself in third person and invited me to hang out in the woods with him, “Bad Keith.”  Or the contractor who had really low rates, so I was excited to have him work in my house, until he told me, “You need sex.”  Or the Coast Rican vacation with a handsome man, which seemed like I won the lottery, until it became a Trip from Hell.  Sigh, here we go again!

Since I just moved from Dallas to San Diego, the company doesn’t want to pay for a new Relocation Package.  Sure, I could move myself; Pasadena is just a couple of hours north of San Diego, no big deal, right?  Except…

  • I would be walking away from thousands of dollars promised under my current Relo Pkg.
  • I would have to pay for movers, which could be $2k.
  • Since this is an internal transfer, the hiring manager cannot offer me a sign on bonus. So any benefit ($$$$) must come in the form of a Relo Pkg.
  • If I move before a year is up (which would be the end of November), I have to repay all the money that the company paid to move me out here ($$,$$$).
  • For me to get another Relo Pkg so soon and avoid having to refund my previous Relo Pkg, I need an Exception Form signed by the Vice President*.

*That’s the VP of the company, not of the United States of America.  Altho, it might be equally difficult to obtain the signature!

To recap: I need a program.  Pasadena has a program.  I want to move to Pasadena. I can’t move to Pasadena.

I expect the Marx brothers to come out and go “Woot Woot Woot!” or throw a pie in my face.  I mean, this can’t be real, so it must be a Saturday Night Life skit, right?  I mean, companies are perfectly logical, so there is an easy way to fix this, right?

Why do my friends start laughing hysterically when I said, “Companies are perfectly logical?”

Dating

In the meanwhile, this is how all the above is affecting my dating life:

  • Cancelled a date with a great guy (a Longhorn, nonetheless!).
  • Changed my Match profile to show my location as Pasadena.
  • Received several winks and likes from 56-year-old men in Pasadena.
  • Found a cute guy who said that he worked in Space, emailed him a “Hey, Rocket Scientist! I’m a mechanical engineer!  Let’s get together,” and waited for him to email back.
  • Found out I might not be moving after all.
  • Deactivated my account. After all, I might not be moving; but I might.

So here I am, in limbo.  Again.  I feel like I’ve been in limbo for over a year; first, waiting to hear if I got the job, then waiting to learn my start date, then waiting to find a program.  I’ve been living in an apartment, waiting to find out whether I can get a job in Pasadena or LA.  If not, I can buy a house here by the end of the year and settle down.  I’m pretty blessed to know that I’ll be ok either way.  But limbo sucks.

Going Away Party

Thursday night, I went to my “Going Away Party,” which became a “You’re Going to Have To Put Up With Me For A While Longer Party.”  My friends were happy about that, and hopeful that there would be a quick resolution to my situation.  We drank and ate and were merry.

As for me, I’m still dreaming of moving to Pasadena and dating a CalTech professor.  Or maybe a rocket scientist who works at JPL.  Sally will attend graduate school at CalTech and move in with me.  She’ll be married to Penny by then, so we’ll all live happily ever after.

Did you hear that?  I swear, I just heard a gremlin snicker!

Cheers!

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Sunset as seen from my apartment’s balcony.

 

The Date Started So Well (TBT)

 

“Passivity,” I say, because to me the answer is as obvious as the nose on his face.

His very handsome face looks expressionless.  Even blank, he is soooo hot!  “What?” Ethan Elderberry asks.

Ok, so ignorance isn’t very sexy.  Let’s back up a few minutes, so that you can see how not ignorant this man is.

“My design company has this challenge,” Ethan tells me.  Ya, he owns an engineering design firm; now that’s sexy.  “We’re testing the Canadian arm—you know, the large robotic arm, like the one on the space shuttle?—we test it in a swimming pool to imitate weightlessness.  But it keeps rusting.  We can’t figure it out; it’s made of stainless steel, which typically doesn’t rust.”

Sounds pretty smart, right?  But this is where I bust out with, “Passivity.  Stainless steel works because the chrome in the steel reacts with the oxygen in the air, and the resulting molecules are large enough to close up any cracks and stop rust propagation.  However, you have the stainless steel in a swimming pool, where there is no (or very little) oxygen, so instead the chlorine in the water attacks the steel, causing it to rust.  You need to coat it with a thick paint, or switch to a steel that is chlorine-resistant.”  I’m not sure if there is a chlorine-resistant steel, but he is staring at me, so I may be babbling.

Ethan looks at me like he might kiss me.  “You just solved my greatest engineering challenge.  Engineers at my firm have been working on this for weeks and haven’t been able to figure this out.  Thank you,” he says, then laughs.  “I would have bought you a nice steak and ordered champagne if I had known that you could solve this problem!”  He looks so happy, that I beam back at him in return.

I gesture to the tacos on my plate and look around at the patio where we sit.  “I love the tacos, and I love the patio seating.  It’s such a beautiful day!  I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else right now,” I say, then blush, smiling up at his soft brown eyes.  Did I mention how handsome this man is?  Strong chin, high cheekbones, great hair…

“Want to go for a walk?  My place is just up the road.  We can leave your car here,” he says.

“Sure,” I say.  “I love that this isn’t a typical, dinner-and-a-movie date.  This place is beautiful—the trees surround us, like we’re not even in the city!  I may be repeating myself, but I love Austin.”

“So do I!  This is the Balcones trail.  I like to take my mountain bike out on it, but you walk it, too—just get out of the way when you hear a cyclist coming.  Here’s my townhouse,” Ethan said, walking up on a wooden deck and unlocking the back door.

I’m not sure what to expect.  It’s early afternoon, about 1 p.m., so he can’t expect us to have sex.  Or could he?  Usually that’s an evening, after-a-glass-of-wine sort of thing.  AND this is a first date, so sex would be presumptuous.  But then, we’re at his house, so…

“This is my living room,” he says, gesturing around a nice-sized room.  The brown leather couches look more comfortable than stylish, which screams, “A bachelor lives here!  No woman helped pick out this furniture; it’s too ugly!  (But very comfy.)”

“Great painting,” I say, not really meaning it.  It is impressionist; I prefer realist.  It looks like someone used the canvas to clean her paint brush, after dipping it in bright red, green, and blue paint.

“I found that in a boutique in New Mexico,” he tells me.  “It really spoke to me.  Anyway, there’s the kitchen, and here’s the bar…Let’s go upstairs, so I can show you the view.”

Uh oh.  Upstairs.  I bet his bedroom is up there.  What is this man thinking?  It’s a first date, in the middle of the day…why are we here?!  I obediently follow him up the stairs.  “Oh!  There’s an aquarium set into the wall!”

“Like it?  I saw one at a club, and thought it was cool, and had this one built in,” he tells me.

I smile in response.  I hate it; it reminds me of my ex-husband, who had a 300-gallon aquarium.  “Very pretty,” I say.

“There’s my view,” he says proudly, stepping out onto a wooden balcony.

I avoid heights.  I’m not, like, scared of them or anything.  I just get…well, kinda anxious when I look down and it’s further than, say, three feet to the ground.  My mom liked to say that she wasn’t scared of heights, she was scared of falling.

But I also don’t like to flaunt my hang ups on a first date; let him get to know me a little before I give him a list of things that I don’t like: bungie jumping, sky diving, roller coasters, and boats.  Don’t even ASK me to go on the Cliffhanger at Six Flags*.  Shudder.

Anyhow, I looked over the wooden rail of the balcony at the beautiful trees, the nature trail, and down to the wooden deck below me where we had come in.  Before I could think, my mouth was talking.  “You could throw things on someone down there.  Say you had a party; you could throw water balloons on someone.”

His brow furrowed, like a disapproving father.  “Why would I throw water balloons on my guests?  On my friends?

OhmyGod why did I just say that?!  Have I been spending too much time with my kids?  Did I just see the episode of Seinfeld where Jerry and Elaine are throwing things off the roof?  Or have I played too much D&D, so that I think of high ground as a tactical advantage?

Quick, recover!  “Um, or, like, confetti.  You know, for fun,” I said lamely.

“Let me walk you back to your car,” Ethan Elderberry said coldly, unimpressed.

And that was the end of the date.  I had impressed him with my engineering knowledge (which had been learned the week before in class), then turned him off with my impulse to bombard people with objects from the second story.

*******

My date with Ethan was in 2006.  I told my coworker, Animal, about it today, because we were discussing rust.  His name isn’t really Animal, but he reminds me of Animal from the Muppets.  He often opens his mouth and waves his arms around while making noises, just to be funny when he expresses frustration.  It’s more socially acceptable than screaming.  Animal the Muppet has wild red hair and fur all over his body.  Animal the Coworker is bald.

Animal says, “Eh, you don’t want to date someone who can’t have fun.”

“Ya.  I bet anyone in this building would throw things off the 2nd story balcony with me,” I say, referring to my fun-loving coworkers.

He nods.  “And then we’d help you design a catapult to throw things better.”

“So what if he’s handsome, rich, successful, in incredibly good mountain-biker shape?  If he doesn’t want to throw water balloons off the balcony with me, we’re never going to get along,” I say.  “Wait, have you thrown things off the roof here before?  You came up with that catapult comment awfully fast.”

Animal smiled his big, Animal smile.

I smile back.  Anyone wanna throw things off the roof with me and Animal?

Cheers!

*That’s just a sample of my hang ups, not the complete list.  I also avoid scuba diving, skiing, snow skiing, swimming in public (I don’t like to be splashed in the face), cruises (remind me to tell you about the Honeymoon from Hell sometime), horseback riding (see previous comment), etc.  I’m not as neurotic as Sheldon Cooper; at least, I don’t think so.  Sally, hush; I can hear you wanting to say something from here!

I won’t run from a spider or a cockroach, that’s for sure!  Now, a cockroach riding a horse which is swimming across a lake and occasionally scuba diving…well, I’d let him do his thing.

Um, But No…Date Number 3

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“You’re late,” I said.  “Again.”  I put my hand on my hip and gave him a glare.  It was a calculated glare: enough that I communicated that I was upset, but not so much that my face was all wrinkly.  I posed with my hand on my hip.  In my cute blue dress, I knew that I had to look pretty darn good, standing that way.

“It’s a big mall!” Doug said, looking away and smiling a nervous little smile.  “I went to the other side, then had to drive around.”  We were in a typical suburban mall.  Not the Dallas Galleria, not the Mall of America.  A typical.  Freakin.  Mall.

Excuses.  I hate excuses.  When I’m mad, I want someone to say, “I’m sorry.  It won’t happen again.”  That’s all, that’s it.  I’ll decompress and move on.  But ONLY if I hear both of those things, and ONLY if it’s sincere.

Doug wasn’t saying either.

AND it was the second time in a row that he’d been late.  AND the second time that he hadn’t apologized.  Last time, he was 22 minutes late.  This time, he was 10 minutes late.  That’s 32 minutes of my life spend waiting, that I won’t get back.

“Here,” I said, handing him a movie ticket.  I had invited him out and chosen the movie, so I didn’t mind paying.  But I did mind waiting.

“Oh, you bought my ticket!  When a girl buys, that means that she just wants to be friends!” he said.  He was teasing.

I was NOT in the mood to be teased.

“Um, you should be grateful!” I said.  “I wouldn’t buy your ticket if I didn’t like you.”

Doug ignored me and said to the ticket taker, “She bought my ticket.  That means just friends, right?”

The plump young movie theater employee smiled his fake smile and said, “Other women buy the tickets.  Why, just today, a woman slid her credit card to me, and ignored the guy who was trying to pay.”

Bless him for trying to be neutral.

I took a deep breath, determined to enjoy myself.  After all, we were seeing Ant-Man, a Marvel Comic Movie.  I LOVE comic book movies!!!

Even if I was with an ungrateful jerk.

Would it kill him to say, “thank you for the ticket”?!

Doug bought me a bottled water and himself a coke.  We settled into our seats and he held my hand.

Things were going fine until he picked up his coke, drank it for a while, then put his hand on my leg.  OMG HIS HANDS ARE F***ING ICE COLD!  WTFH!!!  I jumped and swatted his arm, pushing him away from me.

I didn’t hurt him.  I wish that I would have.

“Oh, I guess my hands are a little cold, huh?” he asked.  He put his hand to his face.

I definitely should have hurt him.  Bastard.

The movie was good, but… “That is so wrong!  The science wouldn’t work.  It…” I began.

“Comic book science!” Doug said, cutting me off.  “It’s comic book science.”

So much bubbled up inside me.  I wanted to tell him about attractive and repulsive forces, theories I learned from Professor Mercury and from other classes.  I wanted to talk about subatomic forces and what it would mean to shrink.  Since matter could neither be created nor destroyed, the matter would need to be released (most likely as heat) or the bonds would store a great amount of energy.

Doug wouldn’t hear any of it.  “At the race,” he continued.  “There weren’t any stops, like there were at the Hotter Than Hell…”

Geez, he was like one of those Cross Fit guys, who wouldn’t stop talking about Cross Fit.  I get that triathlons are a great achievement, but give it a rest!

“How was softball?” he asked.

Shocked, I almost dropped my water.  “Good,” I said.  “We won the first game by one point.  The second game, we started strong, but ended up losing.”

He went back to rambling about the triathlon as though I hadn’t spoken.

I blinked.  What just happened?  He didn’t ask any follow up questions or give me a minute to continue.  He didn’t ask me if I’d hit the ball or taken any bases.

He walked me to my car and we kissed good night.

Later, I called Gala Pear.  “I don’t think he’s Fuck Ya,” I said.

“That’s fine,” she said.  “I dated guys who seemed great, but I wasn’t into them, so I didn’t see them again.  You have an intuition, and that’s ok.”

“Why is it that I need permission to feel the way I do?” I asked.  Then I answered my own question.  “I’m afraid that I’m getting jaded.  I’m afraid that I’ll miss out on a good man.  But, I’m also afraid that I’ll end up married to a guy that I’m not super into.”  Like my ex-husband.  Or my other ex-husband.

“It’s okay that you aren’t into this guy,” Gala said.  “I get it.”

I love Gala!  She’s awesome.

When I finalized my divorce (the second one), I made a promise to myself that I wouldn’t get married again, unless I found the perfect guy.

That is, the Perfect Guy For Me.  I know that I’m not perfect, and I know that the Perfect Guy For Me will have quirks, too.

But I also think that I’d be miserable if I dated someone who wouldn’t listen to me rant about how the science in the movie wouldn’t work.  Hey, I paid good money to learn all about atomic radii and forces of attraction!  Let me ramble for a few minutes before you cut me off!

I bet Professor Mercury would be interested in debating the theoretical probability of the comic book science.  I would go even further to say that he’d likely discuss whether a giant ant would be possible, or whether the internal organs would collapse upon themselves from the weight.  Anthropoids don’t have bones, you know, so they rely on their exoskeletons to support their innards.

Then again, maybe the Prof would tell me that it’s a just a movie, too!

Nah!!

So, to recap, I want a guy who is athletic AND academic.

Sigh.  Maybe, just maybe, I want too much.

“You deserve more,” Gala told me.

God, I love my friends!  Especially Gala!

Now, how do I break up with a guy, who I’ve only gone out with three times?  And if I met him in person, would it be snippy of me to show up late?

Cheers!

Jules Rules

These are the dating rules that Doug broke:

  1. Be on time. Being on time shows respect for the other person.  After all, she could have chosen to spend time alone or with someone else; she chose to spend time with you.  Show your gratitude and respect by being punctual or early.
  2. If you can’t be on time, apologize.
  3. If you apologize, be sincere. The best way to do that, is to say that it won’t happen again.  Follow through is worth a million words; for every minute that you were late, be twice as early next time.
  4. Don’t put your blankety-blank cold hands on me.
  5. Even if I’m spouting science-y stuff that you don’t comprehend, let me ramble for at least a little while.  Keep in mind that I let you ramble about stuff that I don’t understand or care about (i.e. triathlons that I didn’t attend and/or family drama that I’m not part of).

Good luck, fellow daters!

Sexy Elements

“What is the sexiest element?” I asked my fellow material science majors.  “I think it’s Mercury, because it’s in thermometers and hot guys make my temperature rise!” (https://jstrawberry.wordpress.com/2015/09/15/professor-mercury/)

Sheldon Cooper gave me a dubious look.

Ok, he’s not really Sheldon, but he played The Big Bang star at Halloween.  Close enough.

“Mercury is a liquid.  How is that sexy?!” Sheldon said.

I started to make my case, but like his namesake, Sheldon waved at me like I was an annoying fly.  “Tantalum is the sexy metal.”

He made his case and we listed the reasons on a white board.

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Another student, let’s call him Leonard, piped up with, “Carbon is the sexiest element.”

“Is that why everyone talks about carbon dating? ” I asked.

Everyone was impressed by my pun.  Really, these are nerds, they laughed out loud!!

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I used my super pretty writing to transcribe his list.  I don’t have as much faith in Carbon as I do in Tantalum, but he made some interesting points.

Here’s to nerdy good fun!

Cheers!

Psych Eval III

Hoosier3

She only has three pictures: at the Kentucky Derby with a friend in big, colorful hats; selfie in the bathroom mirror; and a sticking-their-tongues-out pic with a little girl.  She’s beautiful.  I’d date her.

You know, if I was Gary.

What jumps out to me is that she wrote, “Life’s to short.”  It should be “Life’s too short.”  Am I grammar Nazi?  Whatev.  It’s an easy mistake to make, but also an easy one to correct.  Ok, I sound like an English teacher.  Renee (my friend the English professor) would be proud, but for the rest of you, I’m moving on.  (Preposition at the end of the sentence, I know that’s bad form, but I’m going to be cool and deal with it.)

She typed, “what ever,” with a space!  Urgh!  Ok, ignoring that, too.  She didn’t list her occupation, but it’s obviously not English Teacher!

So her profile tells me nothing.  Likes to go out, but can stay in.  She’s playing both sides of the fence and casting a wide net.

Stepping back, that tells me that she’s new to online dating.  She hasn’t read enough profiles to know what to put in hers.  And, she’s not sure what she wants.

Quick, Gary!  Scoop her up before she’s online for too long!  Get her before she gets cynical!

Other News

I bought $77 in toys for work.  True story.  See, we’re working on a project that is hard to conceptualize, so I bought some building toys to make a mock up.  A mock up is a non-functional prototype.  That is, it looks about the same as the end product, but it doesn’t do anything.  Kinda like a life-sized cardboard cutout, except in 3D.  And last week I bought colored pencils, so that I can sketch out concepts.  (Sometimes it helps to sketch before using the computer.) So, yes, I buy colored pencils and toys for work, using my company credit card.  I love my job!

A guy on Match didn’t get my story about how I felt empowered by changing my car battery.  He wrote, “I hope you bought their most expensive one… that one lasts the longest and probably will die during the free replacement…btw if you dating me last year you could have been my AAA buddy and they would have come by and do it for you.”

Um, no.  The answer we were looking for was, “Way to go!  Congrats!”

What was he thinking?  Seriously, why would he hope that I bought the expensive battery?  I don’t understand some people.  And he obviously doesn’t get me!  I can’t date a man who doesn’t know how to use ellipses (the three periods).  I’m such a nerd.

And the Peanut Gallery asks, “How big a nerd are you?”

I’m SUCH a nerd that I had a hard time transposing his email.  I’m itching to correct it!

On the bright side, I’ve been emailing the guy from Speed Dating.  I still have no clue which one he was.  I asked him to hang out on Friday night; hopefully he’ll say yes, because I’m dying to know! #Impatient

G2G – I’m playing softball tonight.  My new company (the super awesome one) invited me to play on their team.  For the record, I’m not that good.  But I do like to get outside, and I love to swing the bat.  Oh, and maybe there’ll be cute guys on the other team. ; – )

Cheers!

This is the third in a series of profile evaluations that I’ve done for my friend Gary of Skipah’s Realm (skipahsrealm.com).  Next time: Softball and dating update.

Hot for Teacher

“My tie was an official Warner Brothers Harry Potter product, as obtained at Party City. I have the glasses and wand, too. Uh, and perhaps a scarf. But I’m not obsessed or anything,” Jason texted to me.

That was in response to my text, “Fun fact: my friend is upset that your tie was purple and gold. She insists that it should be burgundy.”

I’m not a Harry Potter lover, so I went with a more general comment. “It’s not the size of the wand, it’s the magic that you make with it.”

“That’s usually what a guy would say while the girls in the room are secretly disagreeing,” Jason responded.

“Tsk, the answer that we were looking for was, I’ve got your magic right here, baby!” I responded with heavy sarcasm.

“You should never be afraid of the loud one, whose braggadocio exceeds his capabilities. Instead, fear the quiet one, who is confident in his abilities with a wand, a fist, a word, his mouth, his hands, who doesn’t need to make proclamations. His wand work will speak for itself,” Jason texted.

Very nice, I thought.

“Or something like that,” he texted to lighten the mood. “Also, Expelliarmus.”

Ok, I didn’t know what that meant. Maybe it’s a Harry Potter spell word? So I responded in Latin with Buyer Beware, “Caveat emptor?”

“As a fellow capitalist, always,” Jason agreed.

About an hour later, I asked, “Do you play quidich?” I didn’t really care one way or the other; I was curious.

“Yes, I’m a beater,” came the response.

I shrugged at the phone and walked away, curiosity satisfied.

He must have been staring at his phone, waiting for a response, because 59 minutes later he texted, “(Psst, Jason, saying you’re a beater was absolutely the wrong thing to say. You could have Keeper or Seeker, both with pleasant connotations. But Beater? Just creepy, man.)”

So I responded in kind, “(Psst, talking to yourself in the third person is even weirder than playing quidich.)” Then, to give the guy a break, I added, “Hey, did I ever tell you how much I love white, skinny, nerdy guys? ESPECIALLY ones whose names start with J.”

“No, I don’t think you did,” he texted.

“The nerdier the better. Knowledge of Robert Jordan is a plus,” I sent.

“Also, I’m okay with weird, but I want to avoid creepy,” he told me.

“Me too. Don’t grow a mustache or offer me candy while calling me a little girl,” I said.

He stepped up his game, big time. “And what about the combination of Adams, Jordan, Martin, Rowling, and Tolkein?”

Wow. I answered honestly, “I got tingles all over. Add Asimov, and I might faint.” It was getting hot and heavy, nerd style.

A picture of Asimov’s Guide to the Bible came through. One of Asimov’s books that I haven’t read! In hardcover! I swooned. I waited five full minutes then texted, “I just picked myself up off the floor.”

I texted him at the same time that he was texted me. The topic was the same: Doctor Who. So of course we had a lively conversation about which Doctor we’d rather travel with.

Finally, I told him, “I have to go. I’m falling asleep. All that fainting is hard work.”

We met tonight for dinner and drinks. The conversation was just as nerdy: Star Trek (Data versus Spock), Kurt Vonnegut, whether or not Tina Fey was in the last Muppet movie, etc. And less nerdy: whether we should have our next date at the used book store or back at his place. Either way, I’m looking forward to it, because the kiss at the end of the night: WOW. Definitely not nerdy.  I’m hot for teacher!

Cheers!

Electricity Sparked Between Us

His brown eyes looked into my blue ones, and he handed me business card as he said, “If you ever need an electrician, call me.” His gaze said so much more. It said, I really enjoyed getting to know you today. I can’t ask you out, because I’m a contractor at your place of business. I sincerely hope that you call me and ask me out.”

Or, at least, that’s what I “heard.” I took a deep breath. This guy was definitely my type: 5’10”, pale skin, dark hair, and handsome. According to his card, he’s a master electrician. Look at that! And I’m getting my master degree!

Verbally, I answered, “Thanks! I’ll see you again, when you come back to install the ballast in my light fixture.” I smiled at him, relaying the message, I’m not going to call you. We can get to know each other when you come back. I was thinking, I’ve got a boyfriend. No way am I going to mess that up by calling you; even if you are tall, dark, and handsome. Sigh.

His name was Thomas North. I laughed. Renee’s boyfriend is Trevor North! I texted her and let her know.

“He’s probably good in bed! LOL!” she texted back.

“It’d be an electric experience!” I replied, giggling.

“Shockingly good!” she texted.

“I’m so wired thinking about it!” I typed, laughing harder.

“Resistance is futile!” she returned.

“I have no power to resist!” I texted.

“He’d light up your world,” she replied.

“LOL he already did – he fixed my light!” I giggled.

Later, I found this comic on a bulletin board, and had to take a picture. It’s way nerdy, but I giggled anyway.

Ohm_dying_uncle

I told Zack about the electrician coming by (though not about the nonverbal communication), and he made some clever puns. Then he sent me these cartoons:

unnamed_(13) IMG_35245306627150

That was a couple of months ago. I had almost forgotten about the brown-eyed Master of Electricity when his assistant showed up with a different electrician.

“I told Thomas that chocolate is in!” Tito said, grinning.

It took me a minute to figure out what he meant. Then I burst out laughed. Tito is black, and he was referring to his skin as “chocolate.”

“Nuh, uh! I’m not going to mess with you—not with another woman’s name tattooed on your neck!” I said. That wasn’t the only reason that I wasn’t attracted to Tito; he smoked. That was a major deal breaker. Still, he made me laugh; the thought of him and Thomas arguing over me was hysterical! They’d only met me once!

“Shoot, that woman is long gone. I got that tattoo when I was 18 years old and thought that we would be together forever,” he said, rolling his eyes. “We were together five years. She decided that I should share her, you know, and I thought that wasn’t cool. So I split.” He shrugged. “That was a long time ago.”

“Why haven’t you gotten the tat removed?” I asked, genuinely curious. I can’t imagine going through life with my ex-husband’s name in one-inch black letters on the side of my neck, for all the world to see. Geez, dating is hard enough!

“Tat removal would leave a light mark on my neck. That would be more conspicuous than the tattoo,” he explained.

“What about getting a different tattoo over it? They have those reality TV shows where some of the tattoo artists do amazing work to hide old, ugly tattoos,” I suggested.

Tito had already thought about that. “Everything that I think that I might get tattooed, someone thinks is ugly or stupid.” He shrugged. “I learned to live with it. Just don’t let it scare you off!” He winked, and I laughed again. His easy manner and exaggerated facial expressions said that the flirting was all in fun.

“Your friend Thomas never called me, so I guess he wasn’t interested, anyway,” I said, pretending to be aloof.

“Shoot! He gave you his card. Why didn’t you call him?” Tito asked.

Indignant, I replied, “I emailed him! I told him that it was nice to meet him, and to have a great day. He replied with something similar, and a smiley face, so I know that he received my email. And my cell number is on the bottom of every email that I send.” I didn’t expect anything more, truthfully. But I wanted to set the record straight.

“Ohhhhhh! My boy Thomas is going to hear about this! He didn’t call you! Ha!” Tito laughed at the thought of giving his friend a hard time.

I love being able to joke with coworkers like this. I flirt as easily as I breathe—I am a Southern lady, after all—and it’s nice when I can relax and enjoy it. I’d be shocked if it went any further. Seriously, I’d be short-circuited. I can’t currently imagine it.

Cheers!

No puns were harmed in the making of this blog.

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