There are various parts of the Chicagoland area that I refer to as “black holes.” They’re places I know of and could probably place adjacent to other parts of Chicagoland if forced, but they’re also places I know fuck-all about.
I decided I was going to attempt the whole speed dating thing in one of those black holes. Basically, I heard that it was happening and I realized, “Hey, this is gonna be happening two days before Valentine’s Day. That’s a Dancing Monkey Project post waiting to happen!” So I signed up. I didn’t actually really want to do it, but that’s kind of the point of the Dancing Monkey Project, right? I’m supposed to “get out of my comfort zone” and all that bullshit. Also, it was apparently a thing for charity, so I could do the Dancing Monkey thing and help children or homeless people or something. I wasn’t entirely clear on the end goal of that one.
So, yes. Speed dating. Dancing Monkey Project. Black hole. This is not a good combination of things.
This particular black hole was a big north of the area I jokingly refer to as “my old stomping grounds,” which is the Brookfield/La Grange area, where I lived before I moved to Dallas. I’d driven up in to the area, but from there and not the west. Still, I thought I knew where I was going, so I was all, “Who needs a GPS or Google Maps, really?”
This was my second mistake, my first being, y’know, signing up in the first place.
Fun fact: there’s a town called Northlake right around where North Avenue and Lake Street intersect. I’d always thought Northlake was, like, up north somewhere, probably around Northbrook or North Haverbrook. I did not know it was where North and Lake met, but that totally made sense. Also, there’s a town called Stone Park just east of Northlake. I’d never heard of Stone Park before. This whole bit about discovering the existence of heretofore unknown (to me) towns whilst not using any navigational aids, by the way, might be at clue as to what’s going to happen.
I got lost. There was a traffic accident-aided traffic detour involved that really didn’t help. Because I did totally know the route I was supposed to take. I got a little thrown when I couldn’t take said route.
This lovely combination of events gave me plenty of time to think, however. If you want the short version now, I’m calling off the Dancing Monkey Project. If you want the long version, well, it’ll be in the next paragraph. So you might as well stick around.
The Dancing Monkey Project is a hilarious idea for someone who isn’t me to do. It’s really that simple. Alternately, it would be a hilarious idea for me to turn in to a book of some sort at some point in the future. It’s not a good idea for me to be, like, doing as a thing.
Basically, if the goal of going out and meeting people is to, y’know, meet people, then I need to be going out and meeting people without, “Hey, I’m going to blog about this shit as soon as I’m done.” That changes my behaviors and my end goals. And, really, at this point my goal shouldn’t be to have a bunch of stupid experiences, as that’s a giant waste of time for me. And since the Dancing Monkey Project was supposed to get me out and away from the stupid experiences and meeting people…
Um, this is getting really confusing. Perhaps I need a bulleted list. Or, at least, I should start from another direction.
The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. The goal of the Dancing Monkey Project was to get me out doing different things and, therefore, getting different results. But intentionally picking dumb things for the purposes about going out and doing dumb things and then writing funny shit about them actually means that I’m looking to do different things that create the same results as before, which means that eventually the Dancing Monkey Project will just be doing the same things over and over again and getting the same results over and over again.
So I’m not doing it any more.
And I don't feel like I've cheated anyone out of anything, either, since nobody's bothered to drop anything in the tip jar, anyway. And, y'know, my goddamn blog, my goddamn rules.
I'm going to leave it up, though. The picture amuses me to no end and it's not like anyone's using it.
Also, it occurred to me that if, by some random miracle of life, the Dancing Monkey Project resulted in me meeting someone, I’d then feel compelled to write about that. I’m not sure that’s the key to a good, stable, long-term relationship.
So, basically, the Dancing Monkey Project was a form of self-sabotage.
This realization does not surprise me, actually.
Meanwhile, it's not like I have a shortage of social opportunities in my life. By my count, I have crap scheduled at least 17 of the 40-odd days between now and April 1st. And I'm still trying to hold down time on the ever reducing chance I'll be buying a house by the end of February.
Oh, so, on the subject of self-sabotage:
A couple posts ago I told the story of my grandmother’s attempt to get me to hook up with some random Norwegian chick. That part of the story ended with my grandmother convincing (by which I mean browbeating ) me to at least talk on the phone with the girl. So that happened.
The conversation started out in a predictably awkward fashion. To wit, the girl had no fucking clue who I was. My grandmother has been trying to sell me on her for, like, five years. Apparently her parents mentioned me to her, like, once in passing relatively recently.
This was actually a good thing, since I knew she had absolutely zero investment in this cockamamie scheme from the get-go. As such, I explained to her that my grandmother had been trying to get me to hook up with her for five years and wasn’t taking no for an answer and, yeah, the whole situation was super awkward for me.
I did not tell her that my grandmother had described her as “kinda homely looking” and “not the skinniest girl in the world” or whatever. I did mention that her main selling points were “nice to old people” and “Norwegian.” Because that’s funny, I don’t care who you are.
We actually did end up having a very pleasant conversation. She spoke in a regionally-Evangelical dialect of Christianese and told me about her overseas missions trips. I dropped the occasional casual curse word. It wasn’t going to go anywhere.
But at least it’s over now. So now you know the rest of the story.
Well, until my grandmother tries to browbeat me into round 2. Or disowns me. Whichever.
Also, apropos of absolutely nothing, one big thing on the list of things that annoy the fuck out of me about the iPhone is the lack of truly useful repeating calendar events. I have a lot of stuff I do that happens on, say, the fourth Tuesday of every month. My old HTC Tilt did that just fine. The iPhone? Not so much.
Does anyone have any idea why the hell Apple doesn't have that functionality?