Single And Loving It: Oh You Say He’s Just A Friend?
By Single Black Female
Last week I talked about men who banish themselves to the friend zone but I wonder how (and why) it always seems that the good dudes end up there? What is it about them (gasp) or me! that keeps us from going a couple of steps further? I’ve been tossing this relationship thing around in my head for a while trying to figure out if maybe, just maybe I’m better off single. The way I see it, why keep wasting my time with these “road to nowhere” dates when I have everything I need all around me: my male friends!
In the past, older women have told me we need more than one man in our lives because one man is not going to be able to satisfy all of our needs. You all know how I feel about monogamy so I rejected that idea at first. Those ladies didn’t say I should have more than one lover just a keep a pair and a spare in case the one you have can’t (or won’t) do all you desire. That I can get with because the sweet sensitive guy may not have the street smarts (or common sense) to save us from danger (hell he may run further and scream louder than me in the face of harm).
I’ve come across men who can’t plan a trip, kill a bug or change a tire! But with choices a woman never has to worry about being without (and ladies let’s not start with the “I don’t need a man, I can do it all on my own” garbage the only thing that “Superwoman” syndrome will get us is a heart attack). This is why I love my homeboys, not only do they spoil the hell out of me but each one fills a void made by the absence of a steady man in my life. I’m not talking sex! but companionship, conversation, someone to tell me what that noise my car is making is or to come fix my-whatever needs fixing. The problem is my myriad of platonic gentleman makes it harder for those looking to tie me down. I tell my boys all the time it’s their fault I’m so picky. They treat me very well thus keeping my standards high. If my friends are good to me then surely I expect a potential beau to do better, right? Wishful thinking.
Before he moved out of N.Y. a very good friend of mine would call me on a whim just to hang out. We’ve been cool for years, have gone out together many times and he’s never taken me to the same place twice. Once he called and said, “Let’s go out.” Knowing his good taste “ok” left my lips before the question ended. I rarely ever asked where we were going because he made sure I always enjoyed myself. Plus, as with most of my male friends he actually LISTENS when I speak so he knew me and what I liked. One of my likes: SANGRIA! He took me to this little spot in the village that, as it turned out, served four different kinds of Sangria! He looked at me, smirked, and said “well I guess we have to try them all.” Hours of conversation and 4 (or was it 6) sangrias later we (ok I) stumbled around the village trying to walk off the effects so I could drive us back uptown.
On another one of our outings he took me to this tiny Mexican restaurant somewhere in Harlem (he knows ALL the spots). What this place lacked in space they made up for in DRINKS! We tried about three of their crazy, creative concoctions, chatted with patrons around us (he’s a people person like that) and once again had to take the long way around the block to “clear my head” for the drive. We can speak everyday or every few months, he remains the same person I can talk about anything with, get great advice from, laugh until my stomach hurts, and who motivates the heck out of me.
At the other end of the spectrum are dudes such as the one I kicked to the curb recently. I’ll call him my “experiment” because every now and then I start to feel as if I’m too superficial; like I get caught up in looks, status and finances so I’ll date someone I wouldn’t normally to prove (something) to myself. For our first date he didn’t take me out, instead he offered to cook dinner for me. Not what I’m used to for a first so my alarm went off; was he trying to be slick and invite me to his home as a better chance of getting some on date one? However, I was trying something different so I agreed (but he damn sure wasn’t getting any!)
I actually had a nice evening, I brought over a bottle of wine, he cooked, we talked for hours and fell asleep watching television. It was actually romantic AND he didn’t try anything! I was impressed and proud of myself, maybe a voyage from the norm is what this single lady needed. Dates two and three were the same; “come over, I’ll fix you dinner.” Ok, this “something different” was getting normal but when he started to put the moves on I started applying the brakes. Did he really think some under cooked pasta and a bottle of wine were keys to the panties?! He was moving too fast and I thought it was because of his “in the house” mentality. I figured if we changed our environment it would slow down his eager hormones.
The next time he asked me out I replied “ok, we’re we going?” silence, before he stammered, “Oh, um you want to go out? Ok, where do you want to go?” Here we go again, a man who can’t pick a restaurant. I suggested he surprise me. The day of our supposed date, I didn’t hear from him until 10:30 that night when he called to ask if I was coming over to see him?! Wait now, did this Dofuss just booty call me? He hadn’t even put in the work to deserve me flashing him the goods let along getting them. That’s when I realized his cheap, horny ass had run out of time (and chances). I’m not saying I’m a gold digger but I damn sure ain’t messing with no B.N. (hey, call it what you want but love is definitely NOT enough these days).
Well at least I tried (again). When I stopped fooling myself it was easy to accept the fact that I like my norm; trips, gifts and dates OUT! So if that makes me shallow then don’t swim at this end of the pool cause it gets no deeper (ok I do expect MORE than just the material but that stuff is important too!). I also like having male friends and I think that is the answer for us single ladies. If you don’t already have a few, get you some. Now you will need more than one because the single ones probably won’t stay that way longer than you (I always say it’s easier for a man to find a good woman than the other way around) and his new boo will not be feeling your friendship right away. Since my buddy left town I haven’t found his replacement but I still have a movie partner, one to confide in, one who helps me with guy stuff (you know, electronics, car, plumbing etc.) and one to chill with if I’m feeling lonely and just want some testosterone around. Hmmm, come to think of it being in a relationship may be overrated, especially when I have this many choices around. Those old women may be on to something. Until next time, I’ll be out making new friends.