Hold on to your knickers, girls! This weekend is full of excellent music, arts, theater and shopping events. Here we go:
Ides of March premiers tonight (FINALLY). Check it out and see how many Cincinnati landmarks you can spot. Or just look at Ryan Gosling. Read our interview with an actor who is not Gosling or Clooney here, and check out our review.
Clifton Heights Music Festival is back for its fifth installment! Bands of all genres take over six Clifton-area bars (in walking distance of one another) tonight and Saturday. The ever-growing fest continues to be one of the most affordable - $8 gets you in all venues for one night, $12 for both nights. Go here for the full lineup and venue details.
Rapper Machine Gun Kelly plays Madison Theater tonight. My little sister wants to marry him. Important facts here.
I like to think I'm always up on the gossip, but some newsworthy items slip under my radar, like 98 Degrees' Jeff Timmons (my childhood fave - sorry, Nick) being a Chippendales performer! Chippendales at The Rio in Las Vegas features the Cincinnati boy as their hunky headliner all summer long, extending his stay (eyebrow wiggle) several times.
So, if you like combining the most homoerotic performance ever to be marketed to middle-aged women with prepubescent boy band fantasies, and who the hell doesn't, get your ticket soon! Jeff will only be flexing his "Hardest Thing" (sorry) through Labor Day.
Or just watch this painfully awkward video of him posing for pictures!
Speaking of former child stars-turned-desperate, orange juiceheads, Baywatch alum and current Celebrity Rehab-er Jeremy Jackson has also made a bow tie-and-cuffs appearance. Some reports say he's addicted to fitness and would make excellent eye candy, so I'm guessing they haven't seen his stint on the VH1 show. Dude's addicted to German cattle steroids and cancer patient meds.
And if he's worried chemicals in bottled water will turn him gay, he clearly needs to give his Chippendales contract a second read.
White Castle is the oldest fast-food burger joint in the country, serving up savory, moist cardboard-like mini sandwiches for 90 years. That's right, back when people enjoyed a night of Prohibition-grade bathtub gin, they could wash it down with some sliders.
I admit it. I am a Craigslist addict. The first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem, right?
It started back in April while I was still at college. My friend Ashley and I began scheming to find an apartment to share in Cincy for the summer, dreading living under parental control after a year of complete freedom in college.
Before class, I began checking the “apartments” listings all over Cincinnati, constantly searching for a cheaper, cooler, better place to rent.
That lasted for a while. As the school year came to a close, I started thinking about how much I needed to find a summer job / make money before heading back to Ohio.
So my addiction magnified.
Almost every day, I checked the job postings. Before I knew it, I found myself skimming stuff like the “manufacturing” and “systems/network” job postings, even though I fully knew I a) lacked any smidgeon of qualification b) had absolutely no interest in working in a peanut processing plant c) had no clue what the hell systems/network even meant.
Then came the [ETC] category. One of my personal favorites. I started looking here when my job search was failing and I realized how desperate I was for money. The [ETC] listings contain every odd job you could dream up. Fluent in Thai? Want to iron shirts for cash? Mow lawns? Teach tantra? Somebody wants to pay you.
I couldn’t help myself—I kept checking the [ETC] listings to see if I qualified to participate in a dish soap research study or maybe a coffee drinker focus group.
Then came the best part. The missed connections. I can’t even remember how I wandered over to the personals sections. Curiosity is the only reasonable explanation.
Previously, my primary sources of internet humor were textsfromlastnight.com and fmylife.com. But the missed connections were better because they were never really intended to be funny in the first place. Call me a cynic, but it seems like a bit more than wishful thinking to hope that that sexy Wal-mart cashier was checking you out, too, and wandered over to Craigslist just hoping you’d confess your longing in poetic prose. Kind of like this one: “We exchanged eye contact that was fraught with attraction, anxiety, curiosity, longing, despair, hopelessness, hopefulness, an urge to say hi and an urge to say "stop looking at me.’”
Or maybe this one: “’Oh Starbucks barista girl at the 4th and Vine location... how in love am I with you? Let me count the ways… ‘Chocolate frappacino’ you gently said as you slammed the cup to the counter without even looking up... I imagine cartoon hearts must have shot out of my spine and into the air.”
If the missed connections section of Craigslist has taught me anything, I’ve learned that there are a whole slew of romance novelists in Cincinnati just waiting to be discovered. People are so optimistic; they take time to write these postings just hoping it will be read in time for them to reignite that flame kindled in a parking lot, coffee shop, whatever.
I am fully aware of how incredibly dorky/pathetic it is that I have wasted so much time on Craigslist. But I don’t care. Reading the classifieds is a great source for procrastination, humor and insight into the genuine hopes/dreams/hallucinations of people all over the ‘Nati.
Go check out Craigslist. Just not the creepy sections. Who knows, maybe you really did catch the eye of that super cute waiter/librarian/barista. Or maybe you can make a quick $50 for participating in a left-handed research study. It’s all gold.
So Iâ€™ve watched the MTV Movie Awards about three times since they originally aired on Sunday, and itâ€™s not because I think the host Andy Samberg is a really funny, sexy Jew, which he is. Iâ€™m on a boat. Whatever. And itâ€™s not because I have nothing better to do. I do. I just bought a house and I have to paint it and stuff. And I need to do laundry. Itâ€™s because I had no effing idea how hot Robert Pattinson and Zac Efron are. What the fuck? Right?
Ever had a bad one-night stand? Sure, we all have. But I mean like really, really bad? Like the kind of bad where the guy called out his own name or tried to pee on you or wanted you to dress up like Hannah Montana?
Out the dude and warn other women here.
Over the past six months I have gone on several dates. Sometimes there would be a few dates and, more often, just one. Regardless, I would give out my cell phone number because I don't have a home phone anymore. The guys would save my number in their phone, even if the relationship had no potential.I would save their number, too. However, once I made the decision that there was no hope for a man, his number was erased. Recently, a new phenomenon has emerged. Despite the fact that we have had little to no communication, some guys are starting to reappear.
One obvious issue is that I have erased their names from my phone so I am left befuddled as I try to figure out just who is sending me the text message, "Hey sexy babe. What is up?” Of course, I'm overcome with emotion at the thought that some strange man still believes I'm sexy, but I have no way to determine the identity of this mystery person. Then I become concerned that it may be a man I have no desire to speak to again. Really, any man that sends that text message should be automatically eliminated from my dating pool, but I have this problem where I feel bad if I don't respond to a text message. It seems like I'm ignoring somebody that has said "Hi.” So I try to come up with a response that doesn’t let the sender know I haven't the slightest clue who he is. Most of the time I fail. I have even gone so far as to believe I knew just whom I was talking to and called him by name, Steve, only to be humiliated to learn I was really talking to Tom. I tried to talk my way out of it, but I just couldn't. Tom didn't really care because it seems that this casual dating behavior is normal. All was good.
Then, at other times, I get the freaky weird text messages. On my really lucky days, I might get a picture of a penis, which is so flattering and no less helpful in the identification process. A few weeks ago one man sent me a messaging that stated, "Thanks for your support during this really difficult time in my life. I couldn't have done it without you." Luckily, I have stopped deleting names to prevent so much confusion, so I knew the sender. However, having not seen him in six weeks or so I was still unclear if the message was meant for me. Perhaps, he made a mistake and it should have gone to his new lucky lady. I responded and was told that not only was the message meant for me, but that I was his "world." Creepy. I guess a girl should be flattered, but now I'm a little uneasy. We don't talk or see each other, so I'm unclear as to how our relationship evolved into such a serious one. Where was I during this process? Sometimes men do things that make no sense. So ladies, I warn you--watch for the magically reappearing boyfriend. He is not to be welcomed with open arms, but with call-block.
There is a story in the New Testament where Jesus stops the stoning of a woman of ill-repute by arguing that no one is without sin, except him, and so no one has the right to stone this woman for a sin. Jesus doesn't judge the woman and shows her grace and she is saved. Everyone is happy, while slightly condemned and Jesus walks away as a feminist. Lesson learned. Two thousand years later we are set to stone the opposite sex for any and all injustices heaped upon us. Sometimes in the midst of internet dating it is difficult to keep perspective.
I understand that text messaging is a common form of communication for many people, regardless of age. I send text messages. Generally, I have no problem with them. However, I believe they are not a viable form of communication in the early stages of a relationship. And still so many of the men I date feel the need to send text messages as the primary means of conversation. I understand that some feel it is less intrusive than a cell phone call and others, with unlimited text messaging plans, use it as a money saver to talk before 9 p.m. But people, really—if you are unwilling to spend the extra few bucks to say "Hello" then the relationship may be doomed anyway.
Every man I have met, with the exception of one, sends a stream of text messages to relay information, make a date, or, in one particular romantic gesture, request a booty call. Booty Call Benny is always good for a little sexy innuendo via text messaging. "U wanna c me naked?" It makes a girl's heart melt. Usually I receive it at 1 a.m. when I am feeling the greatest need to see any man. But Benny is not alone. So many others feel the need to check up on me with the articulate "Whats goin on?" or "hey." I am left speechless with their concern. My greater issue is how to respond. Before you really know a person it is difficult to determine the purpose of such a message. Perhaps as a woman I simply over-analyze the situation. But I am left wondering if the salutation is meant as a lead-in to a request for a date or if it is sincere concern or if it is simply a way to deal with the boredom of the day. The most common response to the question, "What's going on?" is "Nothing." However, I do not want to seem boring so I am hesitant to respond that way. Instead I find myself replying with an unnaturally long text that looks something like this, "I am about to mow the lawn and later I will fix dinner. I'm thinking something with chicken. Later I might read. What are you doing?" And yes, I do use correct capitalization and punctuation. I believe this makes me seem even more odd than if I had simply replied with "Nothing." Then I find myself more frustrated when I receive no response to my detailed message. I begin to wonder if I said more than was necessary. Sometimes I will receive a text back and we may exchange a couple of messages. Then I find myself unsure of when the conversation is over. Do you say "Bye" to end the exchange? Is there a natural stopping point of which I am unaware?
I don't want to seem rude so I always respond when I receive a text. But it becomes tedious. If someone wants to have a conversation why doesn't he just call? I may make the call and find that he is uninterested in having an actual conversation and I am once again left frustrated. This problem is just another one to add to my already overly complicated modern dating life. You can read the dating books, but not a single one that I have read addresses text messaging and dating. I have simply come to the conclusion that if I am going to have any hope of finding a lasting relationship it must be cultivated without the superfluous text messaging.
- Julie Mamon
You know a date is going to be amazing when it starts with, “The salsa did not sit well with me.” I am now sitting at a booth in a bar (on dollar burger night no less) waiting for my date to return and wondering if he really just walked out. A 10-minute trip to the bathroom should be cause for concern.
Maybe he has food poisoning. Is it wrong to hope that this is the cause for the extended absence? How long does one wait until one just leaves? I suppose he would not send a text message from the bathroom. That might be considered poor text messaging etiquette, or maybe it is bad bathroom etiquette. But would he just walk out? We only spent two minutes together. There is no way that I can be so hideous that it would cause a man to just run away. I’m pretty. I know it. I did not have time to say something that stupid. I guess I’m not the first girl to be left in the first few minutes of a date. I believed that only happened on TV, but it seems I am mistaken.
We’ve all seen those episodes where a desperate man or woman climbs out the bathroom window in a frantic attempt to escape some crazy date. However, I know for a fact no window is present in that bathroom. It is now 7:22 p.m. and without the slightest bit of hyperbole I promise you that he has been in the bathroom for at least 10 minutes. Perhaps he feels such shame that he is afraid to face me. Admitting to explosive bowels on a first date can be a mood killer. However, I don’t judge. It happens to everyone sometimes. Who doesn’t have the story that begins, “So, I found this thing in my fridge and I was hungry, and I thought, ‘What the hell?’ ” Then a few hours later you realize you made a horrible mistake. You curse the Tupperware that preserved the unidentified object in your fridge as you find yourself confined to the bathroom praying that you don’t run out of toilet paper.
Loose Bowel wins the award for the most unique start to a date and perhaps finish to a date. I believe people are starting to stare. I am writing furiously with a red pen, and every few minutes I have to stop and dig through my purse to find another receipt. Damn me and my need to clean out my purse. The waitress wants to take my order, but I’m saying I’m waiting for someone. I sure she believes I have been stood up even if I'm not willing to admit it to myself. I want to say, “No, he’s here, he’s just in the bathroom.” But I’m debating my next move, so I continue to write and reflect on my life. After consulting a dear friend, I have come to the conclusion that I have been left at the restaurant, alone. However, I already have a nice seat and the burgers are only a dollar so I might as well eat.
I mean, sometimes a burger is better than a man. It is satisfying, tasty, cheesy and cooked just the way you like it. What man can promise you that? None. And a burger certainly never leaves you alone at a booth in a packed restaurant with no explanation.
So the waitress just came by and I attempted to explain why I was now willing to order without my date. I debated if I should say that my date abandoned me after our introduction or if I should lie and say he never showed. In the end, I told the truth. She seemed unphased. Maybe this happens all the time? But seriously, people. What makes a man believe that leaving is the best alternative to a date that did not meet his expectations?
When I met Two Ton Toby, who I learned cheated on his wife and had his Meth addicted sister living with him, I stayed long enough to eat. Of course, I was not paying. Perhaps that makes a difference. However, I will not make excuses for Loose Bowel. Even Freaky Rock Man, who only provided a picture from a significant distance and in person looked slightly mentally retarded, got two hours of my evening. I might have ignored his future calls, but I was nice on the date.
Oh well, lesson learned: Keep your eyes on the guy who goes to the bathroom at the start of the date. I do have a view of the bathroom. My friend suggested he might have crawled out. I can’t totally dismiss the fact that he could be slowly dying in the bathroom, but I’m not about to ask someone to go into the bathroom and look for a man with a red shirt and a cone-shaped stud in his chin. That would just be sad.
Instead I will eat my burger and enjoy it, hold my head high and be glad that I'm a winner. That's what pretty people do.
Julie Maman is a veteran of the local online dating scene.
Photo via Wiki Commons.