Dating Chronicles: The Restraining Order Part II


Read Part I here.

I tried to fall asleep, but I kept replaying the events of that morning in my head over and over again. I cried quietly in my old bedroom, fell asleep briefly, woke up, replayed the events, and repeated until Monday morning when I drove to the Clerk of Court’s office to file a protective order. I had no reason to be ashamed, but it was embarassing to ask for directions to the right office for protective orders. It was embarassing to request the forms from the clerk, and sit in the open hallway as I completed several pages of information. The clerk and I went over the information on the forms, and she directed me to a judge to get my temporary restraining order approved.

I sat outside the courtroom on a hard bench in a long hallway, waiting for the judge to finish a trial so that I could get my TRO approved. The hallway was stuffy from having so many people inside, and not enough air vents blowing cool air. There was a man seated next to me who had so much nervous energy that he kept shaking his legs, causing the bench to vibrate. Another woman on the opposite side of me sat motionless with her head down. Suddenly the doors of the courtroom opened, and Charles’ niece (the daughter of Marcel, whose dick I had allegedly been scoping) and cousin exited. IS THIS REAL LIFE?! The niece smiled and asked if I was there for traffic court. I told her no and laughed nervously. They both smiled, accepted my answer, and went about their lives without further questioning my reasons for being there. Certainly, they were going to snitch.

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An Extended Weekend in Biloxi


The New Orleans airport has always been a bit hectic during 4th of July weekend because of Essence Fest, and I wanted to avoid it. Instead of flying somewhere for the holiday, I decided to take a spontaneous road trip with a friend. We decided at the last minute to take the scenic route to Biloxi, Mississippi.

Now, I hadn’t been there since the summer before 7th grade. I only remember because I had just gotten my braces, and I have a picture of my brace face with my parents at a pizza place in Biloxi. The last time my friend had been there was immediately after Katrina destroyed it. Needless to say, things had changed a lot. Poor Mississippi suffered through Katrina and the BP oil spill and it took a gargantuan hit on the economy.

I honestly never held a positive opinion of Mississippi. That state is always competing with Louisiana to take the crown on the “worst states” list, and usually wins. I know that it isn’t a bunch of racist hillbillies stuck in the antebellum, but I just never felt that it had anything to offer me. I’ve met a lot of men from Jackson. Apparently, the dating scene there is horrendous and there are lots of black gays with and abnormally high rate of HIV.

We stopped at a couple of markets on the side of the road in Louisiana as we made our way to Mississippi. Can I just mention how much Louisiana makes me smile sometimes? Where else can one see a sign on the side of the road that says “FRESH GATOR JERKY?” How can one not stop on the side of the road and buy some? It was good, too. We bought gator jerky, cracklins, liquor, and chocolate covered strawberries.

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Dating Chronicles: The Restraining Order Part 1


Charles* and I had been in month three of dating, and things were not going well. The guy had paranoia tendencies, and had accused me of communicating with other guys. I was not and there was nothing to indicate that I was. Furthermore, we were casually dating and not in a committed monogamous relationship, so he had no right to make accusations even if I was. This wasn’t going anywhere, and we both knew it. I was unwilling to defend myself against unnecessary accusations made by an insecure man, so I ended our dating relationship late Saturday night while he was at my apartment.

Maybe I should have done that over the phone instead. I really thought it would be as simple as me saying it’s over, him saying okay, him leaving my apartment, and is both proceeding to live our best lives separately. Charles became irate, began a lengthy monologue about how horrible of a person I was, called me everything but my God-given name, and further alleged that I had been lusting for his brothers-in law. The entire time I lay across my bed, waiting for him to finish saying what he had to say and leave. His outlandish statements were not factual, and I didn’t care to defend myself any longer.

“Yeah, I saw you looking at my brother-in-law!” he yelled passionately. “I saw you looking at Marcel’s* dick when we were at the waterpark! Then you tried to look at me to see if I was watching you, but I caught your ass!” As he spoke, he became even more irate, and motioned to hit me as I lay in bed, but stopped mid swing.

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Dating Chronicles: The Set Up II



Here’s the deal: I don’t like kids. I don’t want kids. I won’t have kids. The only time I like them is when they are nice, calm, quiet, and respectful. Since that happens rarely, I’d rather do without them in my life entirely. I have no doubts in my mind about this. I don’t despise them; I just would rather not be around them. Being around someone else’s kids is out of my comfort zone.

Keith had a daughter who was three years old that he never saw due to “baby mama drama.” There are two sides to every story, and I didn’t know the story of the mother.

Well, for some odd reason, Keith’s biggest fantasy was to spend time with his daughter and someone that he cared about (me at the time) altogether. But he was so afraid to bring his daughter around me because he knew how I felt about children. No sweat off my back. I was not interested in the proposition anyway. He was highly furious at the idea that I was not interested in spending time with him and his daughter.

He invited himself over to my apartment one evening. I say okay, thinking we were going to do grown up things. I got a knock on my door. I unlocked and opened the door without even looking through the peephole to see who was on the other side. I expected to see Keith’s sexy self grinning at me. And I did. Not only did I see Keith, standing in front of him was an adorable girl with long black pigtails and a smile inherited from her father.

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Dating Chronicles: Jerk Off

I had been entertaining a male friend one evening, and he decided to spend the night. I despised overnight guests, and made it a rule to never allow men to spend the night. Things worked best that way because I always felt that spending the night left a door open to the possibilities of other things. Other things were not possible, and I didn’t want anyone to get an misunderstanding. Still, I made an exception for this guy. Actually, it was an unspoken decision between the both of us.

I don’t remember what we did that day, but it exhausted me. We both hopped into the bed at the end of the night. Sex was not involved, but we spooned for a while until I got hot and pushed him off me. This was the summertime and I wasn’t trying to break out into a sweat because of his body heat. We both fell asleep, me on my side with my back facing him. It was common for me to sleep so hard that a party could be happening around me and I wouldn’t know. When I was in Mexico City earlier this year, I slept with the window open while the neighbors across the street had a grand opening celebration of their bar for three days straight. The speakers were blaring with the sounds of music and laughter filled the air, but I still had a good night’s sleep. Similar to those nights in Mexico City, I was dead asleep this particular night.

I was awakened later in the night by movements in the bed. The movements had a pattern, and it took me a moment to realize it was coming from him. It felt like he may have been unconsciously and restlessly shaking his leg in his sleep. I didn’t even open my eyes, but I thought he was asleep. Since my back was facing him, I reached behind me and gently pushed him to get him to stop moving. I didn’t say a word, but he understood what that push meant. He stopped moving. Satisfied with the tranquility of the bed, I repositioned myself by turning around to face his direction and immediately fell back into a deep slumber.

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I Finally Learned How to Swim

Picture When I was a child, I almost drowned at a water park. I was in the kiddie pool when one the workers told us to go to the normal sized pool because I looked too big for the kiddie pool. I wasn’t yet big enough for the normal pools either, but that was where I had to go. I don’t remember much about the incident, but I had a black swimming tube around me and I was slowly walking in the pool. Next thing I knew, there was a drop. I didn’t know how to swim, so I just went down under the water. My parents weren’t watching me because they were in the midst of an argument, but the lifeguard saved me.

I never went to a swimming pool or a beach afterwards, but a part of me yearned to learn how to swim. I remember another vacation with my parents where my dad tried to teach me in a hotel pool. There were trust issues, and I couldn’t get out of my comfort zone in order to learn. Fast forward to adulthood and I spent quite a few days laying on a beach, but never touching the water. I was slightly embarrassed about the fact that I never learned how to swim. Something bothered me about living up to the negative stereotype of black people being unable to swim. On many occasions throughout the years I searched for adult swimming lessons but could never find any in my area.

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Irish Assholes

PictureMy birthday trip to Europe did not begin the way I would have preferred, and I still had some pent up frustration about my hair appointment being cancelled the day before I left. Those unfortunate events were all it took for me to be peeved, but I was handling it well. By the time I reached Ireland, the third country on my visit to Europe, it was a distant memory and everything was fine.

I hadn’t been in the country for a full day before I had an altercation with two guys who were being creeps by peeping into the women’s restroom in a bar in Temple Bar. That was the first of two separate incidents with Irishmen – boys, rather – but I won’t share that story. The second incident happened a couple of days before my trip ended, and let me tell you about it.

I was having a good day, actually. I had just discovered the greatness of Penney’s and I had been shopping in City Center most of the day. Listen, Penney’s is one of the best things Ireland ever came up with. Fuck the potatoes and the Guiness. It’s all about Penney’s.

Once I finished shopping, I headed from City Center to Temple Bar to grab some lunch before heading back to my room. It was pretty crowded because that was a common area for tourists, and it was also Easter weekend. I started walking towards Ha’penney Bridge, and noticed two college-aged guys walking ahead of me being sophomoric. One of them was yelling expletives while kicking a large water bottle down the street angrily and forcefully like it was a soccer ball and he was trying to score a goal. His friend was giggling like the scene was the funniest thing, and he eventually picked up the water bottle so the angry friend could kick it in the air. How immature.

Something within me told me to hurry and walk past these kids before something crazy happens. Something bad was brewing, and I didn’t want to be involved in their nonsense when it came to fruition. It was going to be a fight if they got me wet, I thought to myself.

I passed them up and continued walking toward the intersection. There was a crowd in front of me, so my walking slowed to a stop behind the crowd. All of a sudden. I heard the sound of water splashing against the back of my jacket, and I felt it trickle down to my boots. The boys that I had passed up had caught up to me and threw water on me.

Oh, hell naw. I didn’t know if it was an accident or intentional, but I got angry. I immediately turned around to face them, and to my surprise the couple of boys had multiplied to a group of five or six. I said “Who did it? Who the fuck did it?”

They all froze.
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Ireland’s Barack Obama Plaza


There I was on a bus headed to the Cliffs of Moher from Dublin, and the driver announced that we were about to make a rest stop. I was listening to music on my headphones because there was an annoying teenager sitting behind me, so I only half-listened as the driver spoke. He sounded like he was making jokes about how the rest stop wasn’t like the others; it paid tribute to a very special person in Irish history. Then I heard him say something about Barack Obama, so I knew not to take anything he was saying seriously. Next thing I knew, we exited off the main highway and a red and white sign revealed itself. We were stopping at Barack Obama Plaza.

Now what now?

The volume of discussion increased inside the bus as they noticed the sign. Some snickered and said they weren’t going to get off the bus because the hatred of the former U.S. president was that deep. I smiled with intrigue and rolled my eyes. I frankly didn’t care what the name of the place was. If they named it Donald Trump Plaza, I would have still gotten off the bus if I needed to use the restroom. I didn’t agree with many of Obama’s policies, but a girl needs to relieve herself.

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Positive Vibes in Amsterdam


Amsterdam had been on my radar for some years, and I had every intention of making the trek this year. Imagine my surprise when the stars aligned perfectly, and a flight deal from my regional airport revealed itself to me. Getting a deal out of my home airport was such a rarity that I almost didn’t believe my eyes when I saw the price. Average ticket prices to Europe from my home airport were usually in the range of $1,200, but flights were priced at less than $400 at the time. I booked for my birthday week without even thinking in case the price increased before I had an opportunity to take advantage of it. If it didn’t work out, I had the 24-hour cancellation policy for protection. Book now, think later has been my travel motto.

I stayed in the Old West section of Amsterdam at CityHub. The hubs were cool, but I’ve come to the conclusion that I’m too old for community shower areas. I enjoyed the location for its closeness to the tram stop and the fact that it was right next door to de Foodhallen. Foodhallen is an indoor food market that was a great spot for eats. There are several vendors serving a variety of cuisines. I hit up quite a few spots in de Foodhallen while I was in Amsterdam, and really enjoyed le Big Fish, Baowowow, and The Butcher.


fish buns at le Big Fish


ramen at Baowowow

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Dating Chronicles: Stood Up and Flown Out

IMG_4906Daryl* was a new addition to my roster. He travelled year round for work, so it was difficult to see him. I had to get in where I fit in without much advance. He called me around 10:30 one night, but I didn’t answer because the introvert in me didn’t feel like talking. He called again on the next evening while I was getting ready to hang with friends, and I answered since I was in a better mood.

“I was in your city last night. I called you, but you didn’t answer,” he announced.

“Oh, yeah?” I responded. “I was already in bed when you called.” I really was in bed. I just hadn’t gone to sleep yet.

Now he was two hours away, but wanted to take me out to dinner. I told him about my previous plans for dinner with friends, but suggested we meet afterward. Honestly, I only offered because I thought he would decline the late night invitation, but he agreed. That was okay. I was ready for an adventurous night.

Dinner with friends went way longer than I expected, and I drank too much and was too tired to drive an hour to meet him halfway. so I called after midnight to cancel. I felt so bad about it because I’m a woman of my word. I had said I would be there and I knew he was looking forward to it., but there was no way I could make it. He sounded really disappointed when I cancelled, and even offered to come all the way to me. I declined because I had already washed my face and was in bed. I would have been deep asleep by the time he got to me. Maybe some other time.

The next morning, Daryl called to reschedule. Because I felt so guilty, I was going to drive almost two hours out of the way to meet him instead of meeting him halfway like the previous day’s plan. I normally would have never considered it because that’s a long drive just for a man, no matter how interested in him I may have been. Still, I told him I would make up for my no show, and I wanted to make it right.
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