My latest foray into dating seems to be working out quite well despite many pressures from competing interests for time (mine and hers) and other obligations (hers). I have kept my singles group going, because I enjoy the company of the new people I've met. I'd have to say that if you are in Southeastern Massachusetts, near the Cape or in the area of New Bedford, I hope will you visit us at:
If you are looking for ways to meet fun-loving single people in the South Coast area, South Coast Singles might be for you.
Newly organized, South Coast Singles is a small, but growing,
group of local people who want to make friends, share interests and
activities, and meet other single people in a safe, non-threatening
"It isn't about dating," said founder Lori Bardwell. "It's about enjoying being single."
Ms. Bardwell said she started the group because she realized
many organized activities in the area focused on attracting couples.
Also, many of the groups that she had an opportunity to become a part
of consisted of married couples who were considerably older than her.
"Married people shouldn't be the only ones having fun," Ms.
Bardwell said, explaining that South Coast Singles was designed with
the intention of giving single people an opportunity "to have someone
to do fun stuff with."
"For the first time in my life, I am enjoying being single,"
Ms. Bardwell said. "This group gives me an additional opportunity to
meet quality people with whom I can spend my time with."
"During the first few meetings we sat around and got to know
each other," said John Bescherer, organizer for the group, who also
resides in Mattapoisett. Then South Coast Singles began to plan
activities. At one event, the group had dinner at the Kinsale Inn in
Mattapoisett. At another, they enjoyed a pot luck supper and dancing at
a mill loft in New Bedford. More recently, they played Twister and ate
lamb kabobs at a member's house.
"Some people come looking for dates and potential
relationships, and get a chance to make a few friends along the way,"
said Mr. Bescherer.
Plans for the near future include dinner parties, a sailing
trip to Martha's Vineyard, kayaking on the Westport River, and a
bonfire on the beach. Members are encouraged to participate in the
Right now the group is comprised of 13 members. South Coast
Singles invites members from Wareham to Westport, said Mr. Bescherer.
Events are designed for single adults between the ages of 35 and 55.
The organization is non-profit and everyone contributes to pay for activities and functions.
The next meeting will be held at Turk's Sushi Bar on Route 6 in Mattapoisett on Friday, April 21 at 7:00 pm.
Interested people are encouraged to log onto the South Coast
Singles web site at South Coast Singles . This is a site
where you can place information about yourself and your interests to
share with others. Visitors to the site have to register (it's free) in
order to see the group's events and view information on other members.
This is done in an attempt to see that member information isn't made
available to spammers and to help the organizers plan group events.
If you are interested in attending the event at Turk's please
visit the site and RSVP. The web site is easy-to-access and provides
information on current events.
Is it possible for daters who don't click to become "just friends"? I tried hard with a woman recently but I couldn't figure out what I was doing wrong. We dated in January but she announced she wasn't interested in a romantic relationship after a few hot and fairly steamy dates (although we never made love.)
She did say that she wanted to be friends however and accompanied me to a job interview and we met several times at restaurants and she had me over several times to share a bottle of wine and watch movies. While I was attracted to her, I did enjoy just hanging out with her and talking about things so I figured that I could live with this. I tried several times to interest her in more (a massage while we were watching a movie that she thoroughly enjoyed from what I could tell) but she reiterated that she didn't want romance so I was willing to step back and just stay friends.
A couple of weeks later, I told her about an upoming blues concert and she was quite interested and said that we should get a motel room for the night so that we could really enjoy ourselves. The concert was about an hour away and I figured that she just wanted to be able to drink and enjoy herself but I also figured that it was a good sign that she considered me a friend and might actually be interested in more. We had a great time at the concert, danced, had a few drinks and made it back to the hotel room late that night, where she proceeded to just sack out. We were in two separate beds.
Fine, I thought. I had been ready for anything but it was time to go to sleep. I woke up at 6:00AM and found her asleep in the bathroom. I guess that she hadn't been able to sleep because a noisy bear got loose in the room. :-) I apologized for letting the bear into the room but I had stayed awake for about half an hour after she sacked out so I thought she was asleep before I fell asleep myself. (I knew that she had trouble sleeping sometimes and I was trying to be considerate.) She dragged herself out of the bathroom and into bed and I went out to get some coffee. When I came back later, she woke up and I jumped on the bed rubbing her back and giving her kisses on the back of the neck to apologize and to sympathize for her lack of sleep. I swear I didn't try anything else.
About a week later, I got an angry email that our "friendship" was over because "I had been too possessive" at the concert and had tried again to seduce her. For the life of me, I can't figure it out. She and I had danced a bunch and I had gone out to get dinner at one point (she wasn't hungry), so I really didn't feel very possessive. I certainly was enjoying dancing with her. And when I came back from dinner, she was dancing with some married guy who said that I needed to be dancing with her... so I did again. Maybe I should have tried to seduce her again? But I took her at her word... Oh well...
We had our second meeting of the South Coast Singles (Mass) group. It was a fun night in a beautiful warehouse loft in New Bedford. Dancing, pogo-sticking, bowling (the wood floors are great for this), a big pot luck supper. Afterwards we went downtown for some live music. A great evening was had by all.
Last night I met with a group of area singles at a local tavern. I didn't know what to expect beforehand but I enjoyed myself thoroughly. Mostly we talked about non-dating subjects. We discussed "Brokeback Mountain" and whether the guys would go to see it. (Most wouldn't, no surprise.)
We also discussed getting together on a monthly basis for activities. Many helpful suggestions were raised. One fellow proposed a sailing outing. We could all pitch in to rent a big sailboat for a weekend and take off to explore the deep blue sea. Others proposed movie nights, twister parties (while viewing "Brokeback Mountain" (when it comes out on DVD), bowling, etc.
We compared notes on our experiences. Two people had actually exchanged emails online and had planned a meeting which the guy had called off at the last minute. There was quite an interesting discussion as to what had put him off. Soon they were going at it like an old married couple.
We tried to come up with a group name but left without an accord. I suggested Mattapoisett Singles On Line. (MSOL) Who knows if we'll have a second meeting?
One of the things that seemingly every woman online is looking for is a "good sense of humor". I have always been mystified by exactly what this means. Are these women looking for a man to laugh at their jokes? Someone who likes to watch "The Daily Show"? Someone who finds comedy in the foibles of others?
Or how about someone who actually makes or tells jokes? What kind of jokes would these be?
Self-deprecating humor? ("I'd never date anyone who would have me for a partner." (Sorry Groucho.))
Jokes about bad dates? ("This guy I met on Match wore one blue sock and one black sock to our first date. Calling the fashion police. Hello!")
Political humor? ("How about those oil prices? I went to fill up my tank and they offered to roll it into my mortgage.")
Celebrity Jokes? ("Did you hear what happened to James Frey when Oprah yelled at him? Yeah, he broke into a million little pieces.")
Health Jokes? (Yeah, we're all getting older. I saw my Doctor because I was feeling unable to concentrate at work. I kept running around trying to do a million things at the same time. I could never get anything done. It's like I was hyper all the time. My wife thought I might need a little help and her friends had told her that I might have Asperger's Syndrome. Have you heard of it? A lot of talented people apparently have had it. Well, I asked the Doctor and he said that was exactly along the lines of what he was thinking except that he thought I had an even rarer condition called "Half-Asperger's" and that there was no cure.")
I sure wish that someone would post a guidebook for men. Trying to predict what's funny to a woman is a delicate art. It's almost as problematic as figuring out the Muslim sense of humor.
Michael Schnayerson offers his "12-step program for avoiding romantic tragedy" on Yahoo Personals. Michael is convinced that he has developed "clear, specific warnings which mean Danger Ahead."
Most of them make sense to me, like avoiding people who wear dirty underwear and socks. Or those who describe their divorces as being entirely their partner's fault. Or dates where guys won't pick up the tab for first or second dates and women who never make any offer to pay for anything.
I think he's a little harsh on people who put ketchup on eggs. I don't do it but I wouldn't recommend automatically dumping someone who did. On the other hand, mayonnaise on a pastrami sandwich is a little tough for me to handle.
Also, I think that he is too tough on the woman who interrupts sex with him to comfort her dachshund. She may be embarassed by the dog's behavior or may simply be not as engaged in the sex as he is. Perhaps it's more of a reflexion of her lack of response to him than it is of an exaggerated response to her pet.
I also think he's too tough on "demon children". He apparently has his own little princess but he's never raised a boy. I think his bigger mistake is bringing children into new relationships on the second or third dates. He seems to have no concerns about the feelings of the children involved and can't fathom the anger that some of them display. Perhaps there wouldn't be as much anger if they weren't involved in mom or dad's revolving relationship door.
I wish he had gone back and applied his red flag warnings to his own marriage or to his longer relationships. Surely, a set of rules like this can be most valuable if it helps us to avoid long term doomed relationship. Also, I think that many of these things can be ferreted out before an actual meeting-- through emails and calls. I think that he must not put much effort into his pre-date screening process.
Do you have your own set of "red flags"? I'd be curious to hear them.
I'm reading a great book now-- Why Men Love Bitches-- by Sherry Argov. Her basic premise is that women have to have the attitude that they are fabulous (hence "bitches" in some sense) and that they won't waste their time with anyone who doesn't respect them and that this attitude and "edge" is what guys find attractive. Basically, guys are hunters and they won't value what they get too easily. Someone who doesn't give it away on the third date. Someone who doesn't worry if the guy rejects her. It's not that women are supposed to string guys along, but that if they won't be bulldozed, men will find this most attractive and in the process will learn the types of behaviour that are valued by women in a long term relationship.
Pictures I have taken in the last few months. These include people I have met campaigning for Ralph Nader, my kids, my friends, people who have helped me for no reason...
All photos are Copyright John Bescherer 2004
Adventures in Matchland I'm 47 and the last year has been the best year of my life. It started off slowly. I got laid off from my job of 13 years but I got a great new job and have met some amazing women through Match.com and Yahoo Personals. Disaster and success stories will abound. Looking for your contributions too.
A Cranky Consumer Complaints about Cingular and other companies offering poor customer service or whose products are shoddy. Also, postings about poorly designed websites and marketing plans. For example, 1-800-Flowers.com sends out email ads on Mondays for products it won't deliver on Mondays.