How to meet a man or a woman

The Dating Game

A friend of mine died several years ago leaving behind four kids and a very lovely wife. His death wasn’t sudden, it was a slow, grueling but inevitable demise which, sadly, even having the time to prepare for didn’t make it any less shocking.

My friend was a different cat who did great things for our community on his own terms and at his own speed. Not everyone liked him, or agreed with him, but everyone that knew him respected him and appreciated what he did for our city.

His death effected a lot of people, friends, kids, grand-kids but who it hit the hardest was the love of his life, his partner in crime, his wife.

I ran into one of his kids last night and asked about her mother. My friend died over six years ago and I know his wife has had a hard time letting go or maybe a better way of stating it, starting over. Her daughter said her mother was okay, busy with work and helping out with grandchildren but lonely, she really wanted someone in her life to love again, a partner. She asked if I knew of anyone and I told her all of the 55 to 65-year-old single men that I knew were single for a reason and not good reasons.

If, God forbid, something happened to my wife I would, as I have told her, go to the grocery store everyday and try to find my next mate there. I don’t wear a wedding ring, I don’t wear any jewelry, and I have had a woman or two flirt with me over the years on the vegetable aisle. I figure the best chance an old fat guy like me has of finding a woman is at the Publix’s, at least that would be the plan I hope I don’t have to implement.

But where does an attractive, sweet, 60-year-old women find a mate? Where does she find a guy who is stable, secure, that hasn’t cheated on his ex-wife, or is cut off from his kids and has all of his teeth? I don’t know.

My kids have met their husband and boyfriend the old fashion way, in a bar, a gym, or through friends. I say old fashion because it seems like all of their other friends are dating or marrying people they have “met” on some dating website.

I have never looked at one these dating websites but I have seen the television commercials or magazine ads for a few. Hell I even saw one for farmers with the catchy slogan “SINGLES WHO ARE “SALT OF THE EARTH,” CREATE A FREE PROFILE TODAY, GET STARTED MEETING SINGLE FARMERS.” Seems like an awful lot of pressure putting together just the right profile to attract a farmer girl or boy. Do you hire a professional photographer to take portraits of you wearing overalls and riding around on your John Deere Tractor? Sounds like a competition. And what are the two elements of competition? Success and failure.

I am convinced the “modern man” maybe even the “modern woman” is terrified of both rejection and failure. When I was a young buck out on the prowl rejection was part of the game. We learned early on that there was no way to succeed if you weren’t prepared to crash and burn. Ask a girl to dance and she tells you no wasn’t the end of the world it was simply the process of elimination. There was some female in that bar just waiting to say yes, you just had to find her. As I like to say, the answer is no until you ask.

I met my wife in a bar on a fraternity road trip back in college and a couple of weeks later we had a lousy first date. But there was something about her that kept me in the game and obviously, 35 years later, something about me that kept her from hanging-up on me even though we were 200 miles away from each other. I often think about how we met that night. I didn’t know her from Adam’s house cat. Honestly, I had no business being in her city or at that bar. I should have been back at school studying for a big exam that I ended up flunking on Monday morning. Was it luck, fate or divine intervention? Who knows.

For me the whole dating game is just one more victim of our social media society. We paint these beautiful portraits of our lives, or the lives we desire and the people we want to share them with forgetting that life is messy, and that no one is perfect. We make a check list of ten attributes we are looking for and refuse to accept anyone that doesn’t check all the boxes. It doesn’t work like that, life doesn’t work like that.

I would love for my friend’s wife to find someone. She deserves it. But I am not convinced everyone will find love on the computer. In my mind you have to go to where the people are, a church, a bar, the gym, a party with friends or where I will be headed, to Publix’s hanging out at the produce looking confused.


About ends and beginnings blog

I am a frustrated writer and poet waiting to be discovered. A stand-up philosopher performing on a street corner near you. A Christian with questions but I don’t want to hear your answers. A Buddhist with a bumper sticker on my truck to prove it. A collector of quotes. A grower of lettuce. The Patron Saint of earthworms who name their children after me. A cyclist whose big ass strains the seams of his Lycra bibs. I am American by birth, Southern by the grace of God. My goal in life is to leave an imprint on the lives of the people I love not a footprint on the earth. I am a son, a husband, a father composed of 65%-Oxygen, 18%-Carbon, 10%-Hydrogen, 3%-Nitrogen, 3%-Diet Coke and 1%-Oreo.
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14 Responses to How to meet a man or a woman

  1. Nan says:

    There were several years between hubbies for me … and I totally enjoyed it. This is not to say that I find “married” life distasteful, it’s just that I’m the type of person who can live alone with no regrets. So if I outlive my present “other half,” i’m sure I’ll be fine.

    Having said all this, I realize it can be an entirely different scenario for the male who’s been put on his own. Thus, if and when (the gods forbid!) you ever have to troll the produce section, I do hope you’re able to find a suitable substitute among the lettuce and bell peppers.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Publix would be my avenue of choice. If she/he is in the produce section fondling the tomatoes with great care…..that’s a good omen. If she/he is throwing the cucumbers into the shopping cart carelessly….beware! Great post, brother.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Scottie says:

    I live in an “adult” mobile home park in south Florida. The majority of our homeowners are retired people. Sadly in this age group and older there is often a death of a spouse. The single people connect at the club functions, meals, bingo, dances, and any number of outside events. If you can find several people also interested in it, the social committee tries to make it happen. People are living longer and more active these days. Best wishes for your friend, you are correct, to meet people you have to be where the people are. Here there is always a need for volunteers in many different areas, from schools to hospitals. Often people meet volunteering for the local charities and their thrift stores. Our local hospice thrift store is a place many seniors go to meet, hango out, feel useful, and where they are treated with respect. Be well. Hugs

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Barry says:

    If I had relied on meeting the “conventional” means of meeting a soul mate I’d still be waiting. As an Aspie, I find any social gatherings and supermarkets unpleasant at best where I’m constantly in flight or fight mode. I first met my spouse as a pen friend (decades before the Internet), and should the worst happen and I find myself looking for a new partner, I’d use a modern equivalent.

    As reluctant as I am to admit it, first impressions do count, so in my case an alternative to face to face first contact is a necessity.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Patty says:

    At my age I am in the ‘middle’ as I called it…and so I have seen people found there significant others the old fashion way and also through social media. It both can work, and it can both not work. Why not find a partner at a way that feels comfortable? Stay open-minded, I would advice everyone who wants to find a new partner.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I just think social media has created an alternative universe. We only post pictures of the things fun, happy or exciting that we are doing. It is like we are all trying to live in some Alice in Wonderland fantasy of happiness. Live is dirty and gritty too but we would never post pictures of that aspect of our lives.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Patty says:

        But it wasn’t the intention of social media (like FB) in the first place, to post all of your stuff (fun or bad) at it. It was another way to connect, to stay in touch. Personally, like many others, I discovered it was also a great way to keep relatives and friends updated, after we emigrated. Maybe it is an alternative universe, but nobody is obligated to enter 😉 To me, it is not ‘alternate’, but ‘part of’. What worries me, is that lots of people seem to forget, the are ‘real’ persons behind the avatars, accounts, blogs, etc. To me, the same values and norms should be applied in the virtual world as in ‘live’ communication. Sadly, it doesn’t surprise me, ‘we’ don’t differ behavior-wise, in any universe…

        Liked by 1 person

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