18 hours in the life of a single girl

Friday night: the art of turning down a date

I had a rough week emotionally, yeah? This and this and this.

Friday morning, I was exhausted as soon as I opened my eyes. In exchange for fulfilling my adulting obligations of going to work, I promised myself that I’d spend a quiet evening at home doing laundry, sipping on some locally brewed cider and reading a book. I couldn’t wait. After a useless day at the office (#braindead), I got stuck in endless traffic – cementing my resolve to be a Friday-night hermit. By 7pm, groceries were done, PJs and fluffy pink slippers adorned me and I was all set to win ALL of the dance-offs against myself to Ed Sheeran’s Shape of you.

The phone rang as I was starting the washing machine. I declined the call.

The phone rang again – same dude – as I was cracking open my first bottle of cider. I declined the call, texting Dude1, “You’re pocket dialing me.” He replied, “No, you idiot, I don’t pocket dial twice in a row. PICK UP.” So of course, instead of picking up, I finished prepping my load of laundry. Then I hydrated myself with cider. THEN I called back Dude1 (#priorities); he was inviting me last minute to join him for foodstuffs and drinks.

In case y’all were wondering, it is impossible to diplomatically tell a guy “I’m turning you down because I prefer doing my laundry.




Saturday morning: how to unsexify sexting

Saturday mornings = savage workouts with Coach Dr. Booté. One simply does not mess around with Coach and his workouts. If he requests the pleasure of our presence at a certain hour, we show up. On time. Ready to go. That is just how it works with Coach. #bossyman

So, it stands to reason that despite finding myself in the midst of a rather successful sexting session with Hickster, when the clock chimed 11am, I told Hickster I had to go workout. He requested I send him a naughty pic in exchange for my impending silence. I apologetically refused: no time, no way I would risk Coach’s wrath! I suggested Hickster use his imagination or the internet instead, bc I’m helpful like that.

Giggling, I told Coach and the boys what had just happened. The reactions included:

  • “Who sexts at 11am?”
  • “Who doesn’t sext at 11am?”
  • “So you just gave a guy blue balls by text?”
  • “Of COURSE you shouldn’t be late to MY workouts. Clearly, this bro doesn’t realize that MY workouts are the reason you have a sextable booté in the first place. He needs to learn.”

One of the guys suggested that I send a “dirty” video of me all hot and sweaty working out like an Amazon, lifting heavy shit. “Hey baby, this is what you meant, right? I’m so dirty. And I can whoop your ass. Bye!”

Hickster didn’t find it hilarious. Hihi.


Because sharing is caring, behold Vanilla’s dirty videos:

And another, by which time I’d forgotten the stated objective of the videos, bc I was consumed by the pain of my burning muscles.

That time Vanilla tried to be sexy

I don’t do sexy. I can pull off adorable, pretty, cute, sweet, professional, elegant, athletic or beautiful, depending on my mood and the circumstances. But sexy? Sexy is hard to do. I find the line between sexy and vulgar is very thin, and the last thing I want is to look like Jessica Rabbit at a wedding. I’m not sure if it is the product of my English Protestant- inspired upbringing mixed with my Catholic high school run by nuns, but when I imagine being sexy, I inevitably think of Mr. Bean. With a role model like that, y’all can understand why I struggle with the concept of sexiness.

It gets even more awkward when I shift from sexy appearance to sexy behaviour (attempted flirting and seduction). There was that time I attempted a strip tease for my first boyfriend and got stuck with my shirt above my face, arms flailing helplessly above my head, caught in the impromptu straight-jacket. I looked similar to Mr. Bean with the turkey on his head. Except unlike Mr. Bean, I collapsed into hysterical giggles as my boyfriend looked on in consternation. Not quite the tone I was going for.

There was the time I attempted 69-ing with that same boyfriend . It was an activity I was still getting used to – very complex movement: the fear of accidentally braining the guy with my knee as I settled down, making sure all bits were properly aligned and then multitasking. On this particular occasion, boyfriend decided we’d change the usual procedure and he’d be on top. I didn’t say anything, because I was concentrating on sucking in my tummy and my come-hither look. Also, I couldn’t figure out how to verbalize my concern that he would squash me – seemed like a rude thing to suggest. Anyhow, the logistics were ironed out, multitasking began, and… He farted. In my face. And tried to keep going as though nothing happened. I understood that I was supposed to follow his lead. I failed. Bursting out laughing with a penis in one’s mouth is not sexy. Nor is it sexy when you have to try push off a big guy from on top of you, so that you can take a few deep breaths as you attempt to moderate your uncontrollable laughter, while naked, next to a boy with wounded pride. Anti-sexiness.

And now, for my most recent failed attempt at the sexy.

Last week, I decided to overhaul my undergarment collection: my stuff was beginning to look ratty, and given my new comfort-level with vulnerability, I was hopeful that 2016 would result in more successful dating streaks/opportunities to get naked. I took advantage of Boxing Day sales and splurged on $150 of lingerie (worth > $300!! Saving money is super sexy). As I was getting ready on New Year’s Eve, I decided the most reasonable thing for me to do would be to send a picture of myself in my new frivolous lace undergarments to Beaut – if we weren’t going to ring the New Year together, obviously the next best thing would be for him to have a picture of me half-naked on his phone. Absence makes the heart grow fonder, and all that. Beaut was appreciative, and I thumped my chest in victory at having successfully been sexy.

At my New Year’s Eve party, I wanted a sassy picture with my girlfriends. After many attempts, one dude successfully captured our hotness and texted me the pic. After editing it and posting it on Facebook I discarded my phone, so I could pour myself a drink. Pouring myself a drink requires a lot of concentration, so I didn’t hear my girlfriend calling me over and over. She eventually tapped me on my shoulder, and handed me my phone, looking stricken.

“What’s wrong?”, I asked, concerned.

“Your phone… I’m sorry… I didn’t mean to… it just happened… I was trying to find the pic of us you just posted, and send myself a copy, but instead…That’s a VERY SEXY picture!!! That isn’t vanilla at all! I mean, I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to look, but it was just there, and you’re hot! You sent that to a guy, didn’t you! Ballsy. I never imagined you doing that kind of thing. Very nice lace, by the way – was that from Victoria’s Secret? Maybe you should lock your phone, though.”

That wasn’t embarrassing AT ALL.

Now, you’d think that would put a damper on my attempts at being sexy via technology. You’d think. However, keep in mind, it was New Year’s Eve: a night of hope, dreams, affection and booze. Too much booze.

Possibly because Beaut sent me a nice midnight text, and possibly because I was slightly tipsy, I decided when I got home that the best way to ring in the New Year would be to send Beaut a naughty video for him to view once he got home from his own celebrations -as a promise of good things to come in 2016. So I did. And then I went to sleep.

When I woke up the following morning, I checked my phone, and I saw that Beaut had not yet seen my video. In fact he hadn’t been online in 8 hours. Apparently, Beaut had fallen asleep before me! That was unexepected. Home-made naughty videos, when viewed in the wee hours of the morning, under the influence of alcohol, are acceptable. Home-made naughty videos, when viewed in the harsh unforgiving hungover sunlight are rarely sexy. I was anxious.

To add to my anxiety, Beaut seemingly spent most of January 1st sleeping – he was not online. Not that I was checking, compulsively, every 5 minutes, no way. Finally, I saw he’d read my messages. Finally! I was going to be put out of my misery. He’d say something, mutter appreciative noises, anything!


I waited.


I went for a walk.


I caved. Casting any dignity aside, I wrote to him that his silence made me want to hide under a big rock, and that it wasn’t my fault he’d seen it at 3pm instead of 3am: maybe he’d like it more if he pretended he was drunk?


He wrote back an hour later to say that he was at a New Year’s family reunion, and as I’d prefaced the video with a “watch when you are alone”, he’d refrained from watching it. I was relieved.

5 minutes later he responded that he’d given into temptation and watched it, discreetly, at his family reunion… and while it had had the effect I’d intended (yay), it was slightly awkward for him to manage the side-effects, given his surroundings. I laughed.

Based on my NYE fiascos, I can only conclude that 2016 will not yield statistically different sexiness results from prior years. My attempts at being sexy always result in laughter, not penetration.



Follow-up to sexting post: a cake rant

For starters, if any of you haven’t read my post about how I sexted a guy (“V”) who lived out of town, changed my mind, and then spent 2 months dealing with his unalterable expectations, regardless of my sledge-hammer techniques to try convince him that I really and truly had changed my mind, which culminated in his visiting Montreal, and a very awkward date, I suggest y’all do. Its rather amusing, and necessary context for what follows.

I wrote how Coach and Nene, to my surprise, seemed unfazed by V’s behaviour, “Vanilla, you wouldn’t understand, you’re not a guy. You sexting him, changing your mind and being a tease… that was playing hard to get. Of course he wouldn’t listen to anything you say after that point!”

Approximately 50% of the responses I’ve received (mostly guys, ranging in age from 25-50, and some women too) have repeated variations of Coach and Nene’s statements.

  • That’s just how guys are, they might hear you but they won’t believe you – you were interested once, and changed your mind, why wouldn’t you change it again?” OR;
  • You shouldn’t have opened that door if you didn’t want him to come a’knocking” OR;
  • Lesson learned, next time you won’t be a tease” OR my personal favorite, from my recently affianced straight-as-an-arrow accountant friend Brown Socks;
  • “Well you texted a guy for two days saying you were going to lick his balls and bang him like a snare drum… you could see why he might question your inclinations.”

You guys. NO. NO NO NO NO NO NO. I was so taken aback by these responses that I went on a rant about this sextaster at the cafeteria at work… while a VP was present at the lunch table. She did not look impressed, nor did she participate in that conversation. #careerboostingmoves

Here is my issue with all of these responses – they place the responsibility for V’s unacceptable behaviour squarely on my shoulders. They imply (subtly or explicitly) that the wrong I did (sext + flip-flop into being a tease) is the justification for his wrong (being tone-deaf and pursuing his agenda regardless of the number of times I told him I was no longer down for any hookup/romantic quasi-relationship activity).

Y’all. Two wrongs do not make a right. This is not the same thing as telling me that I should have known better than to skip wearing sunscreen, and that I should’ve therefore expected to get burned. In the sunscreen scenario, there is one human capable of perceptiveness, intuition and rational thought (me), and one inanimate object (the sun). The sun’s behaviour is a constant, and the only person capable of altering the outcome of the situation is myself, by applying sunscreen or not. There is a direct correlation between my behaviour and the outcome. Unless everyone responding to my sextaster is implying that V is no more evolved than an inanimate object, and is incapable of discerning when he is inflicting discomfort, the sunscreen analogy falls short.

I hate to go there, but these responses are worryingly close to the whole “she should’ve known better than to wear provoking clothing” argument. My poor decision in sexting V is NOT JUSTIFICATION for his subsequent blithe disregard for 2 months’ worth of my statements assuring him that I had changed my mind and was 100% not willing to pursue that road.

One of my friends, a woman, came up with the following analogy.

Let’s say I had promised V to bake him a cake (not an apple pie, y’all let’s stay focussed on the discussion at hand): the best banana-chocolate cake ever, with Nutella frosting. If I’d spent 2 days boasting about how this cake would be the cake to end all cakes, and how much I’d enjoy baking it, V would be pretty pumped. I think we can all agree that if, soon after my promise, I changed my mind and told him that I wasn’t going to bake the cake, he would pretty sad, and even a little upset that I had wasted his time, and broken my promise. All of which he would be entitled to do since breaking my promise is an uncool thing to do. Possibly, he might spend a little bit of time assessing why I had changed my mind, and if there was anything he could do to change my mind. Eventually, however, we would all expect V to accept that no cake was coming his way, and either go look elsewhere for some cake, or accept this unintended dietary restriction.

What we would not deem to be appropriate behaviour on V’s behalf is if he listened to my repeal of the cake offer, said he understood, but then responded, “Imma still show up at your place with birthday candles and matches, it’s ok if you don’t have any cake though, the candles will be enough, I sure do love cake though, but don’t feel bad.” If he then continued to plan and discuss obliquely his interest in eating cake with me, for two months, despite my frequent reminders that I was not only refusing to provide cake, but I didn’t want anything to do with cake, we can agree that at the very least he is an annoying potential guest, and at the worst, some kind of passive-aggressive manipulator.

Cake, sex, buttons, guacamole, back-rubs… it doesn’t matter what I teased V about.

Like, really.


Note to self: sexting is a bad idea

Introducing V

Last May, I met a boy, which we’ll call V. He was from NY, visiting Montreal with some mutual friends. He was attractive, witty and attracted – close to perfect, really. Unfortunately for V, the night I met him was a mere few hours after the biggest trainwreck of my dating career, so I was very wary of anything with a penis. I acknowledged the attraction and promptly ignored it, apart from adding him on Facebook. 2 weeks later, I vacationed in NYC, and I flirted with the idea of meeting up with him. However, I was still recovering from the fall-out of Trainwreck, and V’s enthusiastic interest in me was tangible and made me nervous, so I bailed on him every single night. #dontjudgeme

The following months were uneventful. V and I would exchange the occasional flirty Fbk message and a few compliments. 

If you have an itch, don’t scratch it

2 months ago, I was in a mood. V happened to text me flirtily. That is all it took for me to have a serious lapse in judgment: I embarked in a torrid 2 day sexting fest with V. No, no, I did not send any nudie pics/videos – I am not stupid (anymore). But we most definitely gave each other a graphic laundry list of the various things we would like to do to each other should we ever be in the same room. It was fun, slightly ridiculous (as all quality sexting should be!) and lighthearted, or so I thought. He was in NY, and I was in Montreal. With a 6 hour buffer between us, clearly this exchange was to remain in the realm of wishful thinking, right? Wrong.

I didn’t get too worried when he started discussing the possibility of driving up to Montreal with friends in July for the Montreal Jazz Festival. Afterall, the Jazz Fest is Montreal’s biggest tourist attraction, and my favorite time of the year. Completely reasonable that he’d want to experience it, and reasonable that his friends would want to as well. I figured that his presence in Montreal might lead to a hookup, but maybe not – why not wait and see?

I got anxious when his rate of texting increased: good-morning texts, mid-morning “how are you” texts, afternoon “just checking to see how your day is going” texts, and good night texts. I tried subtle hints (“I am working, can’t text”) and the not-so-subtle hints (not answering for hours, and then just responding with a smiley face). I got seriously anxious when V suggested that waiting till July to see each other was too long, why not go on a weekend getaway to Albany? I seemed to have skipped over the fun flirty stage, and found myself in the long-distance relationship phase! I explained to him that I have anxiety and major commitment issues (slight exaggeration), and that while I was comfortable with the idea of hanging out with him if he happened to be in my city on holiday with friends during a major tourist season, ON THE UNDERSTANDING THAT HOWEVER MUCH I HAD SEXTED HIM I WAS UNDER NO OBLIGATION TO HOOKUP OR EVEN KISS HIM, I was not at all comfortable with dedicating an entire weekend to him in a city I had zero inclination to visit. Yes, I wrote all of that, explicitly – it was a bit too brutally assertive for my tastes, but I wanted to be fair and give him all the information required to not faceplant. 

The part where nothing I said made an impact 

V promised me he had zero expectations. I relaxed. I stopped relaxing when he asked me if there were any books he should read so that we could have something to discuss when he visited in July. When I unhelpfully told him that there were no doubt aplenty of books to be read, he explained he wanted to know my top 5 books.

That triggered a small meltdown.

He asked for my input when selecting the AirBnB apartment for his Montreal stay, to help chose the best location. Reasonable. Except it stopped being reasonable when he also asked for my feedback on which interior décor most suited my tastes. In desperation, I reminded him that I didn’t care about interior décor as it was highly unlikely that I would ever see the inside of his apartment. To be sure there could be no misunderstandings, I reminded him that I would be working during the weekdays that he was planning to be in Montreal, and that I have commitments on the weekend, so that really, there would be little opportunity to see each other. To which he responded, “But I was hoping for a Vanilla saturation.”


I didn’t write that. Instead, I reminded him once again that I had in no way committed to anything, least of all a hookup, and that I was prone to anxiety and excelled at the disappearing act. 

The Jazz Fest

V came to Montreal, as planned, last week. He asked me to please go on a date with him – one with no assumptions. Feeling trapped, since he had made it abundantly clear for over 2 months that this trip was to see me, and not to be on vacation in a beautiful city with friends, I agreed to spend Saturday evening touring the city with him. He tried to see me on Thursday, even offering to drive to my side of town, but I told him “not to bother, I want an early night, big day at work tomorrow.” Sledge-hammer techniques. Vaguely, I wondered if the only reason he wanted to see me for the date was to murder me and cut me into little pieces as payback for the months of awful, humiliating set-downs I’d been giving him. I made sure to tell Nene and my roommate my plans for the evening, and gave both of them a deadline to call the cops if they hadn’t heard back from me by a certain time. Funny? No. Morbid. But that is what 2 months of being not listened to will do to a gal.

The date itself was awkward and ok at the same time. Part of me felt slightly bad, because it was almost romantic: dinner at my favorite wine bar, walk to the Old Port to watch the International Fireworks competition, outdoor concert at the Jazz Fest with a perfect balmy starry night sky… I figured, when planning my night, that I shouldn’t miss out on the glories of the city, just because I was faced with an awkward date!

Poor V. I can see how that date confused him. Although I refrained from being flirty, I couldn’t help but enjoy parts of the conversation, and relax (wine and romantic outdoor concerts will do that to me). He must have felt my signals were mixed. And perhaps they were – had his expectations not been so palpable, I would have been inclined to hookup with him, since he was a fun dude. But that is the thing: I could feel his expectations, and that made me very resentful. Because of that, he got two kisses on the cheek (à la française), and nothing else.

My boxers’ feedback

I told this saga to Coach and Nene, and their feedback was very simple: I blew it the second I sexted V. There was nothing I could say from that point on that would ever get through to him: it would just be interpreted as playing hard to get. As for my skepticism that a guy would really drive 6 hours just for a potential hookup, neither Nene nor Coach saw anything odd about that. (I think that’s insane!!!!) Coach told me that if I wanted to avoid these situations, I shouldn’t be a tease. Valid point. He also said my sledge-hammer techniques were too cute: the only way I could have avoided this two-month long anxious saga was to have completely cut ties with V and ignored all his messages and texts. 

Y’all, I think that’s nuts. I can’t, for the life of me, believe that both Coach and Nene honestly feel that it is normal for a guy to repeatedly ignore blatant, explicit, direct statements from me stating that I am not interested in a hookup. And yet, clearly, V did that. I also can’t believe that the only options I had, after making the initial mistake of sexting V, was to either hookup with him or ignore him. Why is no one proposing a 3rd option, that V LISTEN TO WHAT I WAS SAYING AND BELIEVE ME WHEN I SAID IT?! 

Coach made an analogy. A guy and a girl drunkenly hookup, and the next day the guy tries to explain to the girl that it was a mistake, they should just be friends, and the girl refuses to accept it, causing drama – Coach says that I did the Vanilla version of that.