August 29, 2010

My delicious weekend.

Yep, feeling better, alive, enjoying my life.  Still, I keep hearing from my friends that I "should" be dating.  I agree that it would be pretty cool to have a great guy for company, in and out of the bedroom, but it's just not happening lately, so I thought I'd share what an attractive and eligible single girl over 50 does in LA to have fun on a weekend.

I do admit that it wasn't such a terrible week at work.  My boss was relaxed and even cracked some jokes and, drumroll, ended the week by saying good-bye to me and asked, "we had a good week, didn't we?"  I was speechless, this coming from a doctor who rarely if ever notices our needs or what goes on around him.  And then I had the pleasure of meeting a good friend, the one who works in another doctor's office and totally understands my work-day angst, for a yummy dinner (and marguerita for me and dirty martini for her). Really, there's this bond we women friends have that cannot be matched by even the coolest guy.  We just "get" each other and that kind of understanding and support is priceless.

And Saturday?  A 90 minute hike with my 7-year-old twin grandchildren in Aliso Canyon, an amazingly natural land hidden in the midst of our big suburb north of Hollywood.  Up and down we walked on the hills of the trail in surprisingly cool weather after a week of 100+ temperatures, stopping for the kids to swing on ropes across a   now dry creek or to check out horse poop and figure out who matches the animal tracks.  We're walking and walking and the little girl is way ahead and the little boy behind me, enjoying his newly found branch that he uses as a hiking stick and we're having this discussion about what is the difference between a bunny and a rabbit when, really I'm not kidding, a cotton-tail bunny scampers across our path. Never saw another one the whole time, but heard a great variety of bird calls and saw lots of wildflowers tucked between the blackened tree limbs from last winter's fire. A change of clothes and a big drink of cold water and then we're off to lunch with another very dear friend who enjoys the children and clearly they adore her.  Plus I get the pleasure of watching them have conversations with her about their week, the girl's first sleepover at a friend's house, and the little boy taking his role as brother very seriously by gently poking and pushing her while she talks, giggles, and then ignores him.  Aaaaaahhhh, there are no troubles in the world when in the company of those wonderful little people and a girlfriend I love and appreciate more than words can say.

And Saturday night?  Karaoke!  Without any of my usual single girlfriends, I met up with a new and struggling singles group and formed a singing group I named "The Girls" so any of the ladies in the crowd could join in.  And we sang for two hours!  Picture Motown and Neil Sedaka and Broadway tunes with four or five or six of us "girls" moving and grooving and singing to the music.  Oh, no, I'm not a singer, nor have I ever participated in Karaoke, but this was really a blast.  Me and my new friends finished our evening after Karaoke by sitting on the restaurant patio, listening to a live band sing songs from the 60s to the present.  Brave me, I went up to the guys during the break to tell them how much we enjoyed them and found out that one guitar player was older than me and the singer was my daughter's age and together they were grand.  Need a really cool band for a party?  Call "Last X" at 323-360-2469 or email them at

And there's more!!!  Slept in until 7am on Sunday morning, leisurely did some household chores and made my favorite hot cereal for breakfast and then drove to Burbank to usher with three friends at the Colony, a wonderful little theater tucked into the Burbank mall near an Ikea.  It may be a small theater, but the plays are professional and full of heart and this one is no exception.  Titled "Free Man of Color" from the theater's website, "A stirring drama about one of the first freed slaves to graduate from an American university — and he did it almost 40 years before the Emancipation Proclamation. Based on a true story, Free Man of Color explores the life of John Newton Templeton, a fascinating but forgotten figure in our history. A young African-American scholar, he learns in the course of the play that with freedom comes great responsibility and that his future is not as obvious as the color of his skin. Winner of the Joseph Jefferson Award for Outstanding New Work in Chicago, Free Man of Color speaks to the humanity in us all and reminds us that true freedom is derived not from the law but from determining our own destiny."   Then, a walk through the mall and dinner at Pasta Pomodoro, a little but amazingly good Italian restaurant where I ate butternut squash stuffed ravioli with the most delicious sweet topping and a side order of spinach grilled in virgin olive oil and garlic. It hardly gets tastier than that.  A walk back through the mall with a quick stop for a free See's candy for dessert and then a twenty minute drive back home to feed the cat, get into my jammies, tidy up the house a bit, and then crash in front of the TV to watch Drop Dead Diva.  Pretty cool Sunday, huh?  Oh, I almost forgot that I started a thread on my facebook page, saying "I want (need) to take a vacation - anyone want to go?" and surprisingly I got quite a few responses already, saying plan it and we will go!

So would a great guy fit in?  I'd make the room for him, I promise.  But I'd sure not give up those totally memorable moments with my grandchildren and my women friends.  Never!

August 19, 2010

Fashion and boogie boards.

Things are looking up.  I still wish I were retired and could go to the beach or read books all day or see every movie that comes out or travel the world, but I can't and that's it.  I do think I'm coming out of a long, long funk since I went to a dance party last weekend and really had fun and went out to a really enjoyable dinner with one of my favorite guy friends last night and I'm feeling pretty OK with work. I even have a dinner planned next week to meet with a prospective new employer and another with a guy who leads another singles group and wants to brainstorm some new ideas about getting our groups together for some activities. Did I mention my new purple couch?

I have always had to work, even when my daughter was small and I did day care to make ends meet.  But amazingly my daughter gets to be a stay-home mom to her beautiful seven-year-old twins.  Yes, it's terribly hard work to teach them and make sure they learn how to be good and kind people, but she's doing a wonderful job of it.  And kids do say the darndest things, no question about it.  The children were heading out last weekend for an adventure with their wonderful dad when he was playing music from The Who with the words "I can see for miles and miles and miles...." and the little girl Talia piped up with "He must be eating a lot of carrots."  I mean, you can't buy that kind of pleasure, hearing something so real and smart coming from such little people.  And the little boy Quinn comes up with some brilliant observations himself, which we have dubbed Quinnisms.  So they were shopping today for boogie boards for the beach and Quinn picked his out right away but Talia couldn't find what she liked so they had to go to a few stores until she found a purple one..  Which led to today's Quinnism, " "Fashion, it doesn't always have to be pretty. What matters is that you like it. It's like with humans, it's the most important what's on the inside. The outside doesn't matter so much."  He's seven, loves to run and play and is amazing at building things with Legos and his mind is thinking things that some adults never realize.  And I get to be their gramma. 

Clearly, I'm feeling better and more alive.  I'm even participating in organizing a karaoke night on August 28th and the next Wow potluck will be on September 2nd with Marni Battista as speaker.  If you want to have fun with us at either event, just email me at for details.  Meanwhile, I think I'll curl up with a good book (which I got from the library with my new library card!) and my loudly purring cat and enjoy some well earned relaxation.  

p.s. That's a pic of the twins who just turned seven and were writing thank you notes for some birthday gifts.

August 15, 2010

Fixing men.

Thanks for your emails asking about when I'm going to write again or how I am or what I've been doing.  Really, it makes me happy to know you care.

I'm just been coasting.  My job is still exhausting, but I'm no longer feeling the fear of my boss, the flip-flop in my stomach when I have to face him.  One more old issue resolved, or at least controlled.

With that weight lifted, I'm finally feeling more interested in socializing and even went out last night with fellow Wowettes to a dance.  OK, it was a dance we all thought would be so dull that we'd eat our chicken dinner and leave within an hour or so.  But!  We had a blast!  There weren't any guys there that interested us, except the one guy I always see at these events who always laughs and kids around me, is affectionate, and never asks me out. But we chicks had our dinner, a glass of wine, and spent the rest of the evening dancing with ourselves to the music of the 50s and a fabulous live band. And I mean really dancing.  Picture five or six of us women on a dance floor full of couples, in a circle and doing all the moves from the 50s and 60s in unison.  I swear we looked like go-go dancers without the pedestal to dance on.  We laughed and we giggled and we had the best time.  I met two women I invited to join Wow, two women who were classy and smart and played with us like we were all old friends.  We're fabulous women and we're single and unattached and we had a great time.

Not that it wouldn't be fun to have a great guy in my life.  But meanwhile, being single is fun.  I had a week that was pretty tough at work, talking to three elderly married women who were taking care of very sick husbands, women who sat at my desk and cried.  And I thought of some of my single women friends who claim that they desperately want a man in their life so that, when they get old and sick, he will take care of them.  How do they know the guys won't get sick first or would the guys they pick really be their nursemaids when they get old and disabled?  And this week I heard from several other friends in long term relationships, complaining about their husbands, how the one who has always refused to travel now refuses to take a trip or the guy who always refuses to go to parties with her now refuses to go to a party.  And the single one who just met a guy who fell head over heels for her but has some traits she can't tolerate so she gave him some books to read so he'd suddenly become the man of her dreams.

Maybe the biggest problem in relationships or marriages is not money or lack of communication or not enough sex.  Maybe it's unrealistic expectations and denial.  My theory is that we women have really long lists of what we want in a mate and then we meet a guy who has a few of those qualities so we decide he must have all the items on the big list.  When we find out he doesn't, we make it our project to make him into the guy we originally and mistakenly thought he was.  Remember that line from Samantha in an episode of Sex and The City where she said something like, you can't change a guy, that maybe you can change his hairstyle or clothing, but even's that's a struggle.  I read this week that personality is fully formed by the age of seven years old.  Seven!  How can we possibly change a guy in his 50s or 60s?!?  I've heard so many times when a woman friend doesn't like something her guy has done, like he's unmotivated to get a better job or he doesn't show up on time ever or he'll never go to the movies with her, and she says, "I'm going to have a talk with him."  Ladies, it doesn't work.  It's like talking to my Suburu and telling it to be a Mercedes.  Just not gonna happen.  You get what you buy. That's it.

I know all this because I've done it.  Many times.  It's hard to get all that attention and affection and warm fuzzy stuff from a guy and face the fact that he has qualities that are intolerable so we have to give him up. Being such strong successful women, it's hard to admit that there really is something we cannot change or fix or make right. And I do admit that sometimes guys, and probably some of us women, put on a good show until we're hooked and then turn into slobs or get moody or refuse to pick up our clothes.  But ladies, he is who he is.  Accept him or move on.  Really.  But meanwhile, you can always count on your women friends for a great time. Every time.