A Not So Glorious Quest

     Today, my significant other wanted to cook dinner in a crockpot. While he is an expert with this cooking device, I have never used a crockpot. But I am an expert at minimizing messes. So, the crockpot needed a liner. At least, that’s what my friends told me. So, I went to the store in search of crockpot liners.
     Initially, I thought Lady Luck was on my side. I got the first parking spot, next to the handicapped spot. Bonus! This was going to be a quick in-and-out shopping experience. A piece of cake.
     As I entered the store, there was an enormous display of crockpots of all makes and sizes. I thought it was weirdly coincidental. But alas, the display lacked liners. But that was okay. I figured they would be in the paper products aisle with the aluminum foil and oven bags. So, I made a beeline for the paper products aisle.
     When I reached the spot where the liners should have been, the shelf was empty. Everything else on that shelf was fully stocked. An employee was behind me.
     I said, “I’m looking for crockpot liners. Do you know if you have any more?”
     She replied, “They took them and put them up front. Look in the baking display.”
     I thanked her and headed for the baking display. There were no liners to be found.
     Another employee asked, “Can I help you?”
     “I’m looking for crockpot liners.”
     “Did you look in the paper products aisle?”
     “Yes. The lady there told me they should be here.”
     “They’re not.”
     Duh. “I know.”
     “Let me see if there are any in back.”
     My mind decided to start singing, The Impossible Dream.

     To dream the impossible dream
     To fight the unbeatable foe
     To bear with unbearable sorrow
     To run where the brave dare not go

     After several minutes, I knew she wasn’t coming back.
     In the meantime, I counted four endcaps that had crockpots on them. Four endcaps! What’s the deal on crockpots? Why was every make and model on sale? Was this God’s way of taunting me? Or was I on an episode of The Twilight Zone?
     I trudged up toward the front of the store. I wasn’t ready to give up yet. They were pushing crockpots hard. Those liners had to be somewhere. And by God, I was going to find them!

     This is my quest
     To follow that star
     No matter how hopeless
     No matter how far

     I approached an older employee who was stocking the Christmas section. She looked as if she was a seasoned employee. No pun intended! And I wanted to slow down Christmas from coming to the store. I mean really! It’s November 2nd. Anyway …
     “Excuse me, can you tell me where the crockpot liners are?”
     “Did you look in the paper products aisle?”
     ”Yes. The lady there told me they were in the baking area. They weren’t.”
     “Hold on. Let me check.”
     She proceeded to use the radio clipped to her blue smock to ask if anyone knew the whereabouts of the crockpot liners.
     The first response: “Check the paper aisle.”
     I sighed heavily.
     The second: “Check the baking display.”
     I rolled my eyes.
     Thirdly: “We’re out. We don’t have any.”
     I threw up my hands in exasperation.
     The radio chatter ceased.
     She said, “Sorry. Guess we don’t have any.”
     I thanked her and walked away. But I was not done yet.

     To fight for the right
     Without question or pause
     To be willing to march into Hell
     For a heavenly cause

     I walked around and searched every single display in the front of the store. And dum-da-da-dum! Success! I found the stupid liners on a display between two registers.

     And the world will be better for this
     That one (wo)man, scorned and covered with scars
     Still strove with her last ounce of courage
     To reach the unreachable star!

     Thrilled with my victory, I skipped back to the lady in the Christmas section. “I found the liners. They’re between two registers two aisles over.”
     She smiled. “Glad you found them.”
     The song, Celebration, by Kool & the Gang, came on the radio on the drive home. I cranked it up and sang along. Hey, I was happy after all of that.
     I walked in the door and proudly handed him the box of liners. “You won’t believe what I had to go through to find these.”
     Sheepishly, he said, “Um. I didn’t wait. I started already without one.”
     Oh, my God! Are you freaking kidding me?
     Without uttering a word, I walked away. At that moment, only extremely colorful language would have come out of my mouth. And being the good Catholic girl that I am, and since today is All Souls Day, I thought it best to keep my mouth shut.

Copyright © 2017 by Suzanne Purewal

With the exceptions of excerpts from “The Impossible Dream”
From the Man of La Mancha
Music by Mitch Leigh, Lyrics by Joe Darion

My Dad: Wildlife Whisperer

P1030366Bighorn Sheep

     If you missed the first vacation installment, this adventure took my parents and me into Montana and Canada—Banff National Park, Jasper National Park, Yoho National Park, Waterton Lakes National Park, Kootenay National Park and Glacier National Park. The majority of the time there was no Wi-Fi or cell phone coverage. So, we were on our own.
     My dad has taken gorgeous pictures over the years. He won several contests for his work, deservedly so. This requires going the extra mile to get the perfect shot.
     He will blaze his own trail when the official one does not give the best view of whatever he is attempting to capture.
     He will stand on the edge of a precipitous cliff with stones giving way. He will venture through brush without batting an eye. Rocky mountainsides pose little challenge. Continue reading

The Sound of Silence

P1030771
     Hello, friends! Welcome to another “Mis-Matched to Miss Match” episode. I know you were hoping this would be a good news post because I have not written in some time. Sadly, that is not the case.
     The subject of today’s blog is a handsome 42-year-old professional. He was downright yummy. He was intelligent and funny, and we hit it off wonderfully. At the beginning, he was attentive and eager to please. He even sang to me while we slow danced. I was in heaven. It was a romantic dream come true! Slow dancing and singing! Just imagine it! Continue reading

Finding My Way

     The last poem I posted, Harvest Day, was written during the darkest time in my life, my unexpected divorce. That’s right, it was worse than going through cancer. Not to minimize the hell that cancer was, because that ordeal was horrible. I knew I would beat cancer. But I did not think I would survive the divorce. I couldn’t sleep or eat. And although I lost a lot of weight, I do not recommend divorce as a weight-loss program!
     Eventually, I climbed out of the pit of despair and rejoined the land of the living. I wrote Finding My Way during that arduous climb.
Continue reading

Harvest Day

     In honor of National Poetry Month, here is one of the poems I wrote in Fall 2011. I wrote this poem, Harvest Day, on one dark day early in my divorce journey.
Continue reading

Drunk and Drunker

dont drink and drive
     Hello, Friends! Welcome to the ongoing saga of “Mis-Matched to Miss Matched.” Today’s dating tales of woe concern two men and their love affairs with alcohol.
     The first bachelor passed the email and phone call tests. When I met him, there were a few red flags, but he seemed fun and easy to talk to. So, against my better judgment, I went on several dates with him.
     He declared that he was working out 4-5 times a week, was living a healthy lifestyle and was going to lose more weight. He had already lost 100 pounds.
     Although I did not observe him making healthy food selections, it was his drinking that bothered me. He did not stop at one or two drinks.
     If you have been following me through this journey, you know I am a one-drink person when I am out, and I am the designated driver. I will not get into a car with someone who is legally drunk.
     During our last date, I met him at his favorite restaurant. This place carried a special type of wine just for him. I learned that on our first date. That was a red flag, but I chose to overlook it.
     He greeted me with a hello kiss. Then he proceeded to tell me how sick he was and how horrible he felt. The congestion in his chest was terrible. He held his chest and coughed. It sounded like bronchitis to me.
     Backing away, I reacted, “Yikes, no more kisses for you until you’re well.”
     He replied, “Oh, you’re one of those.”
     One of those? If you mean people who don’t want you contaminating them with all of your respiratory infection germs, yes, I’m one of those. Be considerate. Good Lord!
     I sighed as I sat across from him.
     Then he coughed and coughed, without covering his mouth.
     I am sure I cringed as I shifted to the right. At least that way he was not coughing directly on me. I mentioned that he should be coughing into his elbow.
     Eventually, he covered his mouth with his hand. But then he wanted me to hold that hand.
     Are you trying to get me sick on purpose?
     Thank God I had antibacterial wipes.
     While he enjoyed his third glass of wine, he saw I was agitated. He asked, “What’s on your mind?”
     Oh, buddy, you just asked the wrong question. I don’t think you really want to know. I’m thinking I’m going to catch this plague you have. And your drinking is bothering me. But since you asked…
      “The amount you drink bothers me. Every time we’ve gone out, except one time, you’ve had a lot to drink. Not just one or two glasses of wine, but multiple glasses. I’m concerned.”
      “I’m not an alcoholic.”
      “Do you drink every day?”
      “I usually don’t go out during the week.”
     Not sure what that had to do with the price of tea in China, I replied, “Well, I won’t ride with a person who’s legally drunk. If you’re always going to drink like this, I will always have to drive.”
     Defensively, he argued, “I am not drunk! Do I look drunk? Do I act drunk? Am I slurring my words?”
      “No.” Because you have built up a tolerance.
     He continued, “My friends drink hard liquor. I drink wine. It’s better. We’re here every Friday and Saturday night drinking at the bar. They drink hard liquor. I drink my wine.”
     Every Friday and Saturday? Drunk is still drunk, dude. Any cop will tell you that. So will a blood alcohol test.
     I stated, “It doesn’t matter what you’re drinking. Alcohol is alcohol.”
     “It’s just wine. And now you’re making me uncomfortable and self-conscious.”
     “Sorry, you asked, and I had to say something because it’s making me uncomfortable.”
     Dismissively, he responded, “You’re making something out of nothing. I’m not an alcoholic. You don’t drink wine, so you don’t understand.”
     What’s there to understand? Wine contains alcohol last time I checked.
     Then he stopped the waitress and asked her for another glass of wine.
     Are you freaking kidding me? Way to show me you don’t have a drinking problem.
     She emptied the contents of the bottle into his glass. This was glass number four.
     As he drank, I got the “you’re not the boss of me” look and vibe.
     I shook my head and ate my dinner.
     I am not trying to be the boss of anybody. But drinking and driving is a serious issue. And I do not want to be with someone who drinks to excess all the time.
     Then he said, “Next you’re going to tell me I can’t ride my motorcycle without a helmet.”
     Heavy sigh.
     Annoyed, I said, “No, you can do whatever you want.”
     Obviously, because nothing I say matters anyway.
     After he drained his glass, he asked the waitress for yet another glass.
     She answered, “I emptied the bottle last time. Do you want me to open a new bottle for you?”
      “Yes.”
     If you are counting with me, this was glass number five.
     Finally, dinner was over.
     After that evening, my texts to him were short.
     He texted, “So I’m assuming by your lack of communication and enthusiasm, you’ve lost interest and can’t get over my evil wine drinking ways.”
     You guessed right! That and your complete disregard for my welfare by spewing all over me and for not understanding why I would not want to put my life into the hands of someone who was legally drunk.
     I wrote, “You disregarded my concern completely. I understood finishing the glass in front of you. Then you had her open another bottle. And you got defensive and dismissive. I can’t handle being with someone who drinks 5 glasses of wine in that short amount of time and disregards my feelings.”
      “Actually it was 3 glasses and that hardly makes me an alcoholic…I wasn’t trying to dismiss you by ordering another glass but I was trying to make a point that I’m 52 years old and I’m pretty set in my ways.”
     I was not going to argue about the number of glasses or about anything else for that matter. I was drinking water and clearly counted five glasses of wine.
     So that was the end of that!

     A friend attempted to help me in my quest for “Mr. Right.” She invited a friend, an extremely wealthy businessman, to meet us for drinks and a light dinner. We were sitting at the bar when he showed up three sheets to the wind.
     Obviously, that was extremely disappointing, in and of itself.
     And did I mention that he looked older than my parents? So, he had nothing working in his favor.
     I was polite at first. But after I had heard the exact same story for the third time, I was mentally done. I tried to ignore him the best I could, but he kept hanging on me.
     I caught the eye of a young, handsome guy a few seats away. I gave him my “help me” look. He laughed and looked away.
     Damn!
     Without another option, I disappeared to the ladies’ room. And I stayed in there entirely too long. When I returned, “Tipsy” was sitting in my chair.
     Thank you, Jesus!
     I quickly sat next to the handsome guy.
     He looked up at me and smiled.
     I smiled back. “I need you to save me.”
     “I know. I saw the look.”
     Exasperated, I threw up my hands. “But you didn’t save me.”
     “Trust me, we’ve got your back.”
     “Who’s ‘we’?”
     “As soon as you left for the bathroom, I watched your drink. I was convinced that guy was going to put something in it.”
     “Really?”
     “Yes. He looks like that kind of guy. A real creeper.”
     I laughed.
     He continued, “And the bartender is watching out for you too. And the piano guy hasn’t taken his eyes off you all night.”
     “Good to know I’m covered. Thank you.”
     “Don’t mention it.”
     He wore a wedding band.
     Of course, the gorgeous ones are always married!
     I said, “I know that you’re married, and I’m not hitting on you. I just need someone to talk to until he leaves.”
     “No problem.”
     We had a nice conversation. And when his wife and teenage daughter showed up, he introduced me to them. He explained the story. His daughter got wide-eyed when he said he thought the guy was going to drug my drink.
     Glad I could provide a teachable moment. Hopefully, she’ll remember this when she goes to parties.
     This nice family even asked me if I wanted to join them at a booth for dinner.
     “No, thank you. I don’t want to intrude.”
     “If you change your mind…”
     I shook their hands. “Thank you.”
     My friend and Tipsy went out to smoke.
     The bartender said, “You look like you could use that dessert now.”
     I nodded. “Yes, please.”
     I ate my chocolate dessert and talked to the bartender and the pianist.
     Finally, it was time to leave.
     My leather jacket was on the back of the businessman’s chair. He insisted on helping me with it.
     As he slipped on the coat, he commented, “Oh, the leather is so soft.”
     Then he reached around and grabbed my right breast.
     Let me tell you something, dear readers. I have never, ever hit anyone. But at that moment, I really wanted to hit him.
     It took every ounce of strength I had within me not to hit him.
     I hear you screaming, “Why the hell not? Hit him! Slap him! For God’s sake, knee him!”
     I was almost a head taller than him. He had been drinking steadily since he walked in. So, he was drunk as a skunk and unsteady on his feet. And I knew that if I hit him, his sorry geriatric ass would go down hard, very hard. And with my luck, he would have broken a hip. Then he and his army of lawyers would have had me arrested.
     Friends, I would not do well in jail. Not for a single minute.
     Instead, I will let karma take care of him. He will get what’s coming to him in the end.
     In the meantime, I might kill him off in one of my books. Or not. I guess you will have to buy my next novel to find out…

If you or a loved one has a drinking problem, please get help. Here are a few organizations that can help you on the path to wellness.

AA http://www.aa.org/
Al-Anon http://www.al-anon.org/
SADD http://www.sadd.org/

Copyright © 2016 by Suzanne Purewal

Calling All Indiana Authors!

Greetings Fellow Indiana Authors!

I am the coordinator for the Local Authors Booth at the 67th Annual Christmas Gift & Hobby Show, Wednesday, November 9th – Sunday, November 13th, 2016. We still have author slots available.

The show will be held at the Indiana State Fairgrounds, West Pavilion, 1202 East 38th Street, Indianapolis, IN 46205.

This venue has been very successful over the years for local authors to sell their books.

You may sign up for as many time slots as you wish. The prices are: $75 per author, per time slot. The fee includes a linen-covered 5 ft table, one chair, storage space, the website feature, an author’s badge, an exhibitor helper’s badge, a parking pass, and two tickets for friends/family. The badges and parking pass are good for free entry for the entire five days of the show. If you need an extra chair, there is a one-time $10 charge.

If you are interested in participating in this event, email me at purewalpublishing@gmail.com, and I will send you the application form.

Although I will accommodate as many authors as possible, there is limited space.

I look forward to working with you! If you have any questions, please contact me.

Thank you!

Suzanne Purewal

The Midwest Blues

     In honor of National Poetry Month, I will post some of my poems.

     This is a poem that I wrote for the Noble Writers’ Group. Each month there is an assignment. This assignment required us to write about a man and a woman meeting for the first time. We also had to use the words airplane, tractor, ocean, city and coast. And for some reason, I wrote it from the man’s point of view. Enjoy!

tractor

The Midwest Blues

While I was riding along on Bessie, my old trusty tractor,
I came across a beauty of a woman. I had to swerve, so I didn’t smack her.
She gasped, “Oh my!” And I pulled over to the side.
She smiled and kindly asked if I could give her a ride.
“Sure ‘nuff. Where to my fine, fair lass?”
“To the closest city where I can order a tall, cool sassafras.”
“I know just the place. It’s up yonder, beyond the hill.”
“Get me there quickly, and I promise you a memorable thrill.”
I threw Bessie into gear and wished she would sprout wings.
Along the way, the temptress whispered in my ear unrepeatable things.
I delivered her as promised to the Land of Good and Plenty Grill and Bar.
After quenching her thirst, she stormed the stage and commandeered a guitar.
She grabbed the microphone and then she did boast
About how big of a music star she was on the West Coast.
“I opened for Jefferson Airplane and was a backup singer for Billy Ocean.
And here I’m stuck in the Midwest amid the cornfields and Amish in Goshen.”
Then she started to sing and her voice was the sweetest I’d ever heard.
And when she strummed the last chord, no one spoke a word.
However, the applause was thunderous and filled her with delight.
She approached me and said, “I promised you an unforgettable night.”
We disappeared and true to her word, for the next hour she rang my bell.
The devil’s in the details. However, a true gentleman doesn’t kiss and tell.

Copyright © 2011 by Suzanne Purewal

Introducing My Romantic Suspense Novel—Challenging Destiny!

Slide1     The wait is finally over!

     I am pleased to announce that my romantic suspense novel, Challenging Destiny, is being released on Saturday, October 10th!

     Buy it in person or online at http://www.suzannepurewal.com.

     Challenging Destiny is the sequel to my first romantic suspense novel, Embracing Destiny. The exciting adventure continues with some of your favorite characters—Sara Taylor, Joe Lazaro, and everyone’s favorite Italian mother, Rose Lazaro.

     Sara Taylor is taking control of her life. Happiness abounds as she finalizes the plans of her dream wedding to her longtime love, Joe Lazaro. Sara’s life is finally coming together. For the first time, she feels content and at peace.
     Joe Lazaro wants nothing more than to spend the rest of his life with his true love, Sara. However, he stumbles across a dangerous undercover operation. Any leak would put his life in peril as well as the lives of his family members and friends.
     Still reeling over the clandestine discovery, a secret from Joe’s past rears its ugly head. Then the unthinkable happens—the worlds collide.
     Will this battle bring Sara and Joe closer together? Or will they become collateral damage in the fallout?

     There is only one way to find out!

     Buy your personalized, autographed copy of Challenging Destiny during its debut signing event this Saturday.

Saturday, October 10, 2015
9:30 A.M. – 12:30 P.M.
Hamilton East Public Library
5 Municipal Drive
Fishers, IN 46038

     If you can’t make the event, here is a list of more signing events coming up.

Saturday, October 24, 2015
10:00 A.M. – 5:00 P.M.
Shop ‘Til You Drop
Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church
3500 W. 106th Street
Carmel, IN 46032

Wednesday, November 11, 2015 – Sunday, November 15, 2015
66th Annual Christmas Gift & Hobby Show
Wednesday and Thursday, 10:00 A.M. – 8:00 P.M.
Friday, 10:00 A.M. – 9:00 P.M.
Saturday, 3:30 P.M. – 9:00 P.M.
Sunday, 10:00 A.M. – 5:00 P.M.
Indiana State Fairgrounds
West Pavilion
1202 East 38th Street
Indianapolis, IN 46205

Saturday, December 5, 2015
8:00 A.M. – 4:00 P.M.
Cornerstone Christian’s Christmas Breakfast & Bazaar
3717 E 300 S
Kokomo, IN 46902

     I will be adding more events before the end of the year. So, check the Calendar Page for future dates. If you can’t wait, you can buy it online at http://www.suzannepurewal.com.

     I am thrilled to be able to share this second book in the Destiny series with all of you. And I am busy writing the third and final novel of this series, Manifesting Destiny. It will be released in 2016!
IMG_1893

     Thank you to my family, friends, and my loyal readers! You have made it possible for me to keep pursuing my passion and following my dreams!

Copyright © 2015 by Suzanne Purewal

It’s Hard to Be Arm Candy

     Welcome to the next installment of “Mis-Matched to Miss Matched.” Today’s story involves a bachelor about whom you have already read. I believed he was worth a second chance. However, that chance was short-lived. It was nice while it lasted.
     In life, timing is everything. Right now, he admitted his schedule is not conducive to dating. That is a gross understatement. And so, he broke my already-wounded heart.
     I will not say anything bad about him. He is a great guy, and he apologized. We are still friends. So this article is more about my experience at this party than about him.
     I never revealed to him how I felt. So, it might surprise him if he reads this. As the saying goes, if you don’t have something nice to say, then don’t say anything at all. But, hell, I write a blog, so I have to write something!
     This bachelor and I attended a large social function together. The food was fantastic, and the live band was really good.
     As the event progressed, everyone seemed to be having a wonderful time. Everyone except for me, that is.
     Let’s say this event was industry-specific. And honestly, it is a field in which I have little interest. Normally, I would make small talk. That’s easy enough to do, right? People are people. Lord knows I can talk about anything. However, the other attendees were not into small talk. They were laser-focused on their field. Period.
     When I was introduced to people, they seemed disinterested since I was not part of their “inner circle.” The only question I received from a few of them was, “Do you have any children?” When I answered, “No,” that was the end of the conversation. Seriously. End of conversation. They turned to engage someone else in a discussion. Time is money. Money is time.
     What planet am I on that the only question anyone wants to ask me is that one? I have no children. Ergo, I am not worth talking to. Yikes!
     I have a lot to offer, thank you, very much. I have plenty to say and have a myriad of great stories, just ask me something else. Anything else!
     I felt as if I had developed a superpower instantaneously—I became totally invisible! Since I did not add any perceived value, I was not worth their time.
     Mind you, I had an opinion of what they were discussing, but since I was not a player, my opinion would not have mattered. So, I kept my mouth shut. Picture that if you can.
     For some time, I smiled and paid attention to the discussion. However, as time wore on, I surrendered. I allowed my mind to wander as I smiled and nodded at what seemed appropriate times.
     I watched a child torment a bug in the grass. I saw an older man nod off, only to have his wife poke him and wake him up. I watched one of the waiters fill cups of lemonade and iced tea and line them up on a table. He dutifully replaced them when a guest would walk off with one. There were twenty-one cups. I wondered why he did not choose an even number.
     I spotted a trail that went off into a wooded area. I desperately wanted to slip away and explore where the path led. But I decided that would be in bad form. Instead, I remained glued to my seat.
     Then, I counted the tent poles and estimated the tent to be approximately 1300 ft x 40 ft. I did not hazard a guess on height because of the varying heights from the edges to the center. If I had a pen and paper, I might have been able to figure it out mathematically. Not. I was not that bored!
     In all of my forty-six years, this is the first time I have ever been excluded to the point that I felt like arm candy.
     Good Lord, being arm candy is a tough job! I had no idea! And I didn’t even suffer through a boob job, tanning sessions, liposuction, or Botox injections.
     As a child, my parents always told me I could do anything. Well, I learned in first grade that I would never be a gymnast or an athlete of any kind. Obviously, over the years, I discovered other things I could not or would not do. Being arm candy just got added to the list. Pole dancer is on that list too. But I will save that story for my next blog article.

Copyright © 2015 by Suzanne Purewal

My Big, Fat Greek Tragedy

MasksComedyTragedy     If there was any doubt that my life is a Greek tragedy in the making, this episode of “Mis-Matched to Miss Matched” should solidify the notion in everyone’s minds.
     This installment’s bachelor is a well-known businessman in this area. So, all I will say is that he was in his early 50s and had blond hair and blue eyes.
     Initially, when he contacted me, I turned him down. One of the descriptors in his Match profile did not sit right with me. And I explained in my reply that descriptor was why I was turning him down.
     He wrote me a long email in return, clarifying his position and dispelling any incorrect impressions I had. His arguments were good ones. So, I agreed to talk to him.
     We talked and hit it off. We wanted to meet. However, he was in Florida vacationing with his kids. We would meet when he returned. Despite him being on vacation, we spoke every day.
     Then, my dad had a heart attack. So, I was driving to New York as this intriguing man was about to drive back to Indiana.
     God just loves messing with me.
     My potential suitor understood, and we kept talking on the phone.
     Finally, we were in the same city at the same time. So, after talking for almost three weeks, we met for dinner. We got along splendidly. Our likes and dislikes were the same in just about all areas, including politics and religion. That, in and of itself, was amazing.
     He grew up on the East Coast, just like me. Loved to travel. Loved live theater and musicals! Yes, musicals! Where had he been hiding all of this time?
     Well, most of the time, he was working, networking or attending his kids’ activities. He had the busiest calendar I had ever seen. He could not plan out more than a week ahead because meetings and events were constantly being added to his schedule by his assistant and his kids. But he swore he would make time for me. And he did try.
     In the days that followed, we talked for hours on end, about everything and anything. The conversation never got stale or boring. The more we got to know one another, the more perfect we seemed for each other. The similarities were uncanny.
     Drinking and smoking were not issues. Awesome!
     His children were older. Another bonus.
     He had no pets and had no intention of ever owning one. Thank you, Jesus!
     Pinch me already!
     Anyway, everything was going pretty well until it was time to meet his friends. That’s when the bottom dropped out.
     While Mr. Seemingly-Perfect did not have any pets, every single one of his friends did. These friends were his work colleagues as well as his personal friends. He spent almost all of his time with these people. And from what he told me about them, they were the best friends a person could ask for. I’m sure I would have agreed.
     But the conundrum was that they all entertained in their houses. You know, where the animals lived.
     If you have not read my previous posts on the subject, my allergic reaction to animals is anaphylactic. So, I can not be around animals. Extended exposure to them could literally kill me.
     Meeting his friends out at a restaurant would have been fine. I suggested that. But in the long run, that would not have been feasible or sustainable, as they all loved to entertain at their homes. Each had an elaborate backyard oasis, fire pit, and/or boat, etc.
     Then there was his buddy’s lake house. I absolutely love lake houses because I love sitting by a lake, looking out at the water and listening to the water lap up on the shore. And there’s nothing quite like watching the sun rise or set over the water.
     That’s one of the biggest things I miss about living in New York. I really miss being close to a large body of water. Growing up minutes from Lake Ontario was a luxury I did not fully appreciate until I moved to Indiana, land of small, man-made lakes. But I digress…
     Alas, there were always animals at his buddy’s lake house. The owner brought his pets and allowed everyone to bring their pets too. Well, just shoot me now and put me out of my misery.
     I could not in good conscience ask him to pick between me and his friends. He’s known some of them for over twenty years. If I kept him from them, he would become resentful. And I would feel guilty.
     And if he always went over to his friends’ houses and to the lake house without me, I would become resentful. And presumably, he would feel guilty.
     We discussed the situation rationally. No compromise was suitable, and he picked his friends.
     I will not lie. I am extremely disappointed. But let’s face it; I could never compete with them, the lifestyle to which he had grown accustomed, the boats and the lake house.
     How pitiful is that? We can’t have a relationship because of other people’s pets.
     Heavy sigh.
     Animals are truly the bane of my existence.

Copyright © 2015 by Suzanne Purewal

It Finally Happened!

     It finally happened! About two weeks ago, I received the most unbelievable message on Match.com. It was short and to the point. I read it twice before it sank in. I just could not believe my eyes. But there it was staring me in the face. It read, “0 Matches Found.”
     Yes, I accomplished the seemingly impossible feat. I exhausted all of my possible matches on Match.com. Even with my extended search range of 100 miles and age range of 35 to 55, there were no matches. None. Nada. Zip. Zilch.
     I hear you saying, “Well, you’re being too picky.”
     No, I’m not. I’m giving a 20-year age range within 100 miles. All hair and eye colors, all body types, except obese, all religions, and a college degree.
     It appears my primary problem is that almost everybody in this state has indoor pets. Over half of my supposed matches were eliminated due to a pet situation.
     Granted, some guys say they will get rid of their pets. But I still couldn’t go into their houses. They would have to rip out the carpets, replace their furniture, clean the house’s ductwork, etc. So, let’s face it, not many men would go through that or have the financial means to do so.

     Not to be deterred, I thought I should try another dating site. So, I signed up for Christian Mingle. Their questions were quite different than those found on Match.

     Would you engage in premarital sex?
     Is my mom running this site?
     Do you believe that the only reason to engage in sexual relations is for procreation?
     Um, no.
     How often ideally would you want to have sexual relations? The answers ranged from “every day” to “never.”
     I plead the Fifth on my answer to this question.
     I am sensing an anti-sex theme here. Seriously? Never? If you want to remain eternally celibate, you should look into becoming a Catholic nun or a priest. They need new recruits.
     Moving on…I particularly loved the questions that revolved around my children, especially since I don’t have any. There was no way to bypass the questions. So, I had to base my answers on the imaginary children that I don’t have and never will have.
     Other questions asked about the woman’s role in the home. Those questions pissed me off. It upset me to think that there are women who are acting subservient to men. That’s an entire blog post in and of itself.
     I found one useful question: How is your timeliness?
     I am always early. If you are habitually late, then you will be literally and figuratively wasting my time. Do us both a favor, do not waste my time.
     There were so many absurd questions, I wish I could share them all. But one of my favorites was: How do you feel about wearing fashionable clothes?
     Oh, just throw a burlap sack over my head, and I’ll tie it around my waist with some twine, thank you. Itchy is all the rage this season!
     The more questions I answered, the more I felt I was falling down a rabbit hole, and I was positive I would end up in Wonderland. Remember, Wonderland was royally screwed up.
     After suffering through the questions and filling out the profile, their system told me I had zero matches. I laughed out loud. No kidding. So, I went to the search feature and altered some criteria. Ten guys popped up. I recognized six of the guys from Match. The others had no pictures. I do not communicate with guys who do not post pictures.
     After five days on this site, I wanted to shoot myself. I did searches to cover anyone breathing and with a pulse within 100 miles. There wasn’t anyone remotely close to what I was looking for in a partner. The majority of profiles had no pictures, and the men lived in rural areas and very few had graduated from college.
     The system sent me profiles to view. Most of the men lived in Illinois or Ohio. Sheesh.
     I was done. So, I called to cancel. The best the girl could do was downgrade my account to one month instead of the original six. Wonderful.
     Obviously, some people have found that site successful. I am happy for them. Sorry to say that I was not one of them. Based on my experience, I would never recommend Christian Mingle.

     Since that went so poorly, I joined eHarmony. So far, that site is a dud too. I had no matches again. But this site will not let you search for people. Their computer does the work and sends you matches.
     Really, there is no way to search. Instead, you keep answering questions. I answered 290 questions. Yes, I answered that many. I’m just sitting on my couch watching television on a Saturday night, so why not?
     I got messages saying, “So-and-so is just outside of your parameters.”
     The majority of men were from other states. Not neighboring states like Illinois or Ohio, but states such as Texas, New Jersey, Florida and California.
     The ones that really astonished me were incompatible based on our answers. If we answered 67% of the questions differently, we are not a match. But those were the profiles the computer kept sending me.
     This service was the most expensive. And this was pissing me off. So, I wrote their Customer Service people a nasty-gram.

     “You only send me ‘matches’ who are outside of my parameters. What is the point of answering all of the questions if you ignore them when matching people? I’m getting ‘matches’ when over 50% of our answers differ. Those aren’t matches.
     And I am not interested in anyone who lives out of state. You repeatedly send me guys who live all over the country. How can I get you to stop sending me people who live out of state? It’s ridiculous. I’m not looking for a pen pal. I’m looking for a mate.
     So far, this service has been a waste of time and money. What are you going to do to make this a better experience for me?”
     And I waited. I am not sure what type of response I was expecting. I just wanted to notify them that their computer algorithms sucked, and I was not happy. Less than twelve hours later, I received a response.
     “Our goal is to find matches for you that are compatible with your unique personality in deep and important ways. We do this by using the results of your relationship questionnaire to screen for individuals based on the 29 Dimensions of Compatibility.
     We understand that you won’t feel a connection with all of your matches. Although we put a lot of emphasis here in the early stages of being matched with someone, establishing chemistry only accounts for a portion of what makes a relationship last and is only something you can determine once you get to know someone. We caution you from trying to make such an early assessment from just the match detail information.
     Please be assured that you will no longer receive matches outside your distance setting.”

     I wish I had a pair of hip waders to trudge through that pile of BS.

     Just when I thought all hope was lost, I received an email from Match. Apparently, since all of the kids in Indiana have gone back to school in the last two weeks, there has been a considerable influx on the number of new Match members.
     So, for now, I’m back to the bachelors on Match. Gentle readers, I know you enjoy these posts, but nothing would make me happier than to have a reason to stop writing them. Wish me luck!

Copyright © 2014 by Suzanne Purewal

A Handful of Mixed Nuts

     Welcome to yet another crazy blog post about the Match.com men. This is my eighth entry of my “Mis-Matched to Miss Matched” series. The email exchanges never cease to amaze me.
     The first man up was a retired bachelor, at the upper end of my range age. His profile picture screamed Hannibal Lecter, sans straight jacket.
      “I had a dream about you last night. I couldn’t stop kissing your neck. I think it was the musk oil and your soft skin creating a sweet spot I couldn’t resist! Do you think that is a typical guy thought, or is it possible that women really are special to me? Just wondering… CyberCasanova.”
     What the ??? Typical guys do not think this way. Musk oil? Who talks about, much less dreams about, musk oil? As far as being special goes, maybe the kind of “special” that is tonight’s dinner entrée with fava beans and Chianti.
     I don’t know about you, but that was entirely too bizarre for me. There was no, “Hello.” Or even a, “Good evening.” I can not believe this guy thought that was an acceptable introductory greeting.
     I replied, “Honestly, I found it to be forward and creepy since we don’t know each other. I wish you luck finding a match.”
      “I think you misinterpreted my comedic style email about a thought experiment of how men think when we see a pretty girl and react with romance laden thoughts of love and affection as if we fast forwarded through courting to a point in the relationship where friendship develops into partners.”
     Huh? A comedic thought experiment? You have got to be kidding me. I didn’t find any of it particularly funny.
     It has been said that there is a fine line between genius and insanity. This guy seemed to have crossed that line.
      “It didn’t come across as comedic. You might want to rethink your approach. Best of luck to you.”
      “We are what our genes say we are and if it’s a smiling, happy, pretty girl that lifts us to happiness to want to live another day, then the Cosmos has set forth profound physical laws and properties to help ensure the survival of our species. A gentleman knows to look but not touch unless given permission. The Devil doesn’t make us, the Cosmos does. You’re probably just another fake profiler that doesn’t know the difference between E=mc2 and their hat size. Just sayin’… CyberEinstein.”
     You’re freaking nuts! And obviously, the Cosmos is slacking big time, because you’ve survived this long.
     I loved his slam on my integrity and intelligence. I think I will refer to him as “CyberNutJob.” And the Cosmos did not make me say it, nor did the Devil. I did it all on my own without consulting my genetic code or altering the space-time continuum.

     The next bachelor did not want to take “no” for an answer. He was within my age range. However, we had nothing in common based on our profiles. Absolutely positively nothing.
     Every picture posted was shirtless. And most were old pictures. They looked like Polaroids from the ’70s. His profile and his emails were written in all capital letters. So, he was lazy on top of everything else. I apologize for the caps, but I want to give you the true essence of the exchange.
      “JULIET…LET ME BE YOUR ROMEO.”
      “We do not have enough in common. I wish you luck finding a match.”
      “ROMEO NEEDS YOU…I’LL COME TO YOU….I PROMISE I’M AS GOOD AS ADVERTISED…ONLY 10 TIMES BETTER!”
      “No, thank you.”
      “ROMEO CAN’T BE ROMEO WITHOUT YOU.”
     I did not reply.
     Two days later, he sent, “I KNOW…YOU SAID NO…I DO RESPECT THAT…BUT I TRUELY BELIEVE YOU MISSED JUDGED ME.”
     No, I definitely did not. All I want to do is correct your grammar, spelling and punctuation.
      “You do not respect me because you keep contacting me. My answer is no.”
      “I DO RESPECT…BUT COULD YOU TELL ME WHY…MAYBE I’LL LEARN SOMETHING. BE NICE.”
     Oh my God! Seriously? Okay, buddy, you asked for it. And I’ll try to be as nice as possible.
      “No, you really don’t respect me because you insist on making me justify my answer. You are not my type, and I am not attracted to you. You have cats. You smoke. You want children. You have so many grammatical errors in your profile, I lost track. You indicate that you will become violent when defending loved ones. You posted shirtless pictures only. And last, but not least, you refuse to take ‘no’ for an answer. Nothing you say will cause me to change my mind. Please do not contact me again.”
     Well, you know he did. But I ignored him, and he eventually went away. Ugh!

     The next bachelor was a retired lawyer. He was well out of my age range.
      “Good looking, sometimes charming, generally well-behaved lawyer calling.”
      “You have a dog, and I am severely allergic to dogs. I wish you luck finding a match.”
      “Pity. Outside of my dog we are a pretty good romantic prospect. I’m as pretty as you, and as smart, creative, sophisticated and wealthy as you’ll find in these parts. Don’t rule me out on the onset.”
     Friends, he was not as pretty as me. Not even close. God forgive me, but the way he styled his red hair made him look like a clown. Not quite Stephen King’s, It, clown, more like a circus clown.
      “My reaction to animals is anaphylactic. So I can not be around them or people who own them. Best of luck.”
      “I have a solution! No hugging, kissing, or ETC. pending the occurrence of at least one of the following:
     1) You become uncontrollably driven to hug, kiss, or etc. with me so as to suffer a bad reaction notwithstanding.
     In your freaking dreams!
     2) You become gradually (and miraculously) acclimated. (I GROW ON YOU)
     You would grow on me like a flesh-eating disease!
     3) You take a Sudafed or other effective medication. (I will pay for testing and treatment- ha ha)
     Over-the-counter meds don’t work for anaphylaxis, moron.
     4) I take a ridiculously thorough bath beforehand. (You can watch!)
     Yuck!!! I shudder at the mere thought. You could not pay me to watch.
     5) My poor dog dies.
     I pity that dog for having to put up with you.
     6) We give it a CAREFUL AND JUDICIOUS TRY.
     Oh sure, because you’re not the one risking your life. Easy for you to say, “Let’s give it a shot.” You’re not the one who could die.
     Let’s meet for coffee, sweetness, I promise you won’t get the hives!”
     Not if you were the last man on earth!
     Life with this guy would consist of one idiotic, never-ending argument after another. Talk about exhausting.
      “I am not persuaded by your arguments. Anaphylaxis is not like a regular allergy. There is no medication I can take to avoid it. I am sorry, but my answer is still no. I wish you luck finding a match.”
      “I know perfectly well the effects of anaphylactic shock. It is after all, an allergic reaction, which is not unique to yourself. Changes in your physical environment could ameliorate the symptoms. In addition to physical factors, the power of the mind cannot be ignored and can produce remarkable things.”
     Sure! Let me just mentally will my throat not to close and miraculously stop myself from dying due to the lack of oxygen. Gee, why didn’t I think of that before??? If it was that easy, I would have tried it with the cowboy from a few posts back. I would not waste my newly-discovered superpowers on the likes of you.
     I did not reply because I knew he would keep arguing. He sent four more emails. I ignored each one.
     Then, a short time later, he sent the same initial email to me. But another quickly followed. It read, “Oops forgot! You’re the anti-dog screwball, never mind.”
     As I shook my head in dismay, a little voice beckoned to me. Behold! It is a jar of Nutella® calling my name. Mmm…hazelnuts – the kind of nuts a girl can truly love!

Copyright © 2014 by Suzanne Purewal

My Listen To Your Mother YouTube Video

     Here’s my YouTube video from Listen To Your Mother! My original title was, “Mom’s Thoughts on Online Dating.”

     Feel free to leave comments on the YouTube site, here on my blog or both!

     You can also view all of my fellow performers’ videos. It was a joy to be part of such a talented cast. Just click on this link. https://m.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL5oPQWgVdsDk-vfoa2dAKVEeUtO7KdvDD

     Enjoy!

2014 Writers’ Retreat

Calling all writers!!! Pen It! Magazine is sponsoring a Writers’ Retreat this October at the Columbus Youth Camp in Columbus, Indiana. Register by September 15th to reserve your spot!

The 2014 Writers’ Retreat
October 17th – 19th

Columbus Youth Camp
15454 Youth Camp Road
Columbus, IN 47201

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The Foreign Contingent

     Welcome to another installment of my “Mis-Matched to Miss Matched” series! The Match bachelors in this post were all born outside of the United States.
     Indiana’s state motto is “The Crossroads of America.” And apparently, we are creating quite the melting pot in Indianapolis. Diversity is a good thing for “Honest-to-Goodness Indiana.” If you know me, you know I love learning about new cultures and traditions.
     Many of you also know that my ex-husband is Indian. His family is from the Punjab region in India. Yes, we had an Indian wedding.
     Anyway…I was contacted by bachelors from fourteen different countries, including India, Pakistan, Greece, Lebanon, Iran, England, Japan and Canada.
     Somehow, I attracted all of the Indian men within a fifty-mile radius. And 99% of them were doctors. Amazingly enough, they were deep into poetry and spirituality. As a poet, that intrigued me, because, let’s face it, most men are not keen on poetry.
     The conversations were interesting, enlightening and intellectual. One of the guys was even Punjabi. He was thrilled beyond belief that I knew what that meant. However, there was an element lacking with each and every one—chemistry.
     So let’s move on to merry old England. The phone conversation with the English guy was so awful it was like pulling teeth. I started fantasizing about my own version of My Fair Lady. I would be a kind professor teaching this brute of a man how to become a real gentleman.
     The Iranian, a self-advertised non-smoker, had a smoker’s cough so bad, I thought he’d cough up a lung during our phone conversation. I felt compelled to lecture him on the dangers of smoking. But that would have required me to listen to him cough longer. Ugh.
     The Pakistani bachelor’s profile pictures portrayed a tall, dark and handsome man. He seemed nice on the phone, but I couldn’t understand him most of the time. He sent me pictures of flowers. He said it was his way of giving me flowers. Sweet. But I did not grant him a live date. I knew I would have spent the entire night asking him to repeat himself. That wouldn’t have been enjoyable for either of us.
     The Greek candidate passed the phone interview. In person, he was gorgeous. Perfect olive complexion, thick black curly hair and a smile that almost knocked me over. He walked with confidence and had a magnificent personality. But alas, he wanted babies. Lots and lots of babies.
     Why does God hate me?!? Why???
     Then there was the bachelor from Japan. His introductory email read: “Hello! Have you traveled to Japan? What kind of cooking do you like? Do you like sushi?”
     My mind answered quickly, “No, I haven’t. The kind of cooking someone else does. Sushi? Way to stereotype yourself.” Sheesh.
     His height was listed as 5’1”. I’m almost 5’7”. And I don’t wear flats. Even my flip flops are wedges. Talk about an odd couple. With my lowest heels being two inches, we would be eight inches different in height. He would look like my child, not my date. That’s all sorts of wrong.
     The Lebanese bachelor was great on the phone. In person, he literally looked like Andre the Giant. Albeit, he was a bit shorter at 6’6”. He was boorish and drank like a fish. I stopped counting after six mixed drinks in less than an hour and a half. I would have left sooner, but it took forever to get the food. Hey, a girl has to eat. The redeeming feature of the night was that the food was good.
     The French Canadian guy took the cake. Period. Hands down winner.
      “I would love to get to know you more better and see how it goes between us, I am mixed race, Dad Canada, Mum America. I lived in Canada all my life.”
     I laughed as I read it. But based on the rest of the email, I knew he was serious about the “mixed race” part. After the initial email exchange, he revealed that he was working in Africa. He would require me to move to Canada as soon as possible to help raise his young son.
     Move to Canada? To raise his son while he’s in Africa? Um, no!
      “I’m sorry, but long distance relationships don’t work for me. I wish you luck finding a match.”
     I figured that would be the end of that. Au contraire, mes amis.
      “I quite understand how you mean but I seriously do not see distance as a barrier in a relationship in as much as true love and affection till the end of time.”
      “I’m sorry, no.”
      “I believe things happen for a reason, a connection happens when the right person comes.”
      “I’m sorry. I will not move to Canada. I am not the right person for you.”
      “Just thought it would be a nice idea to know some things about each other, it will be my pleasure to get to know more about you and answer the following love questions.”
     There were thirty-eight “love questions” that followed. Thirty-eight! There were basic questions, such as, “What do you seek in a relationship?” But there were slightly ambiguous questions, such as, “Do you like public intimacy?”
     I wasn’t sure if he was asking about public displays of affection or if I liked having sex in public places.
     The very last question on his “love questions” list was, “Would you hit your man for any reason?”
     I wanted to answer, “Yes, if he repeatedly ignored every word I said and sent me a list of thirty-eight ‘love questions’ to answer even though I’m clearly not interested. In that case, I might have to smack him upside the head.”
     Instead, my reply to his “love questions” email was simple. “Non. Non, merci. Bonne chance à vous.”
     And that was finally the end of that. Maybe he just didn’t understand “no” in English.

Copyright © 2014 by Suzanne Purewal

My Review of The Book of Mormon

     I was thrilled to have a ticket for opening night of The Book of Mormon in Indianapolis. I had been looking forward to seeing this show for ages.
     When I told some friends I was seeing The Book of Mormon, they said they love going to the pageant every year.
      “Um, I’m not going to the Hill Cumorah Pageant. I’m going to The Book of Mormon. There’s an enormous difference.”
     The pageant is a wholesome family-friendly event, rated “G.” The Broadway show, which won nine (9) Tony Awards, gets a big, bold flashing neon “R” rating.
     For those unfamiliar with the Hill Cumorah Pageant, every year, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints puts on a grand show about their origin, near Palmyra, New York. I am including the link to the pageant, in case you are curious. Although I have never been, I have heard it is quite the spectacle and fun for the whole family. http://www.hillcumorah.org/Pageant/
     The Book of Mormon, on the other hand, is a religious satire musical about two Mormon missionaries sent to Uganda. Here is a link to the opening number that was performed on network television at the 2012 Tony Awards. I love the interaction with other stars, you will too. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zy5K8ApSzhI
     The Book of Mormon was written by the South Park guys, not the South Pacific guys. Trey Parker and Matt Stone are not Rodgers and Hammerstein. Although the latter might be impressed with the former’s orchestral score, they might have been appalled with the profanity peppered throughout the lyrics.
     I was not appalled. I was amused and entertained. I know…I hear gasping from all directions. I can feel prayers being offered up to save my soul. Sorry gentle readers, but I go to the theater to be entertained. I knew what the show was about before I bought my ticket. So, I was prepared.
     As I flipped through the Playbill, I noticed that the Mormons had bought three pages of advertising space. I thought that was awesome. They were not protesting or picketing, they bought advertising, which in turn supported the show. Obviously, they can take a joke. So, we should be able to as well.
     The Murat Theatre was jam-packed. I am guessing that the show was sold out. Unfortunately, the air conditioning was not working. So we were dying of heat. But the show went on!
     The performances by the cast members were stellar. Very high energy. You could tell they loved what they were doing. You saw it in their facial expressions. You heard it in the notes they sang. You felt it in the steps they danced. This troupe was having a blast. From what I observed, most of the audience members enjoyed it as much as I did.
     The satire and social commentary were sharp and in your face. Did some of it go too far? Yes. Could they have cut out all of the swearing? Most definitely. But then it would not have had the same impact.
     Parker and Stone are smart and witty creative geniuses. They are not about decency and decorum. They are about shock and awe. All of their works are over-the-top by design. They get people talking about controversial social issues. And that is the point. They are forcing a dialogue. In that, they have succeeded. Not to mention, they have made millions of dollars in the process. Good for them.
     If I still went to confession every week, this week’s session would start like this, “Bless me, Father, for I have sinned. I loved The Book of Mormon and would definitely see it again.”
     The priest might give me five Our Fathers, ten Hail Marys and a Glory Be as my penance. But it would be worth it!
     Yes, I highly recommend this show, but only to people who are not easily offended. This show is not for ultra-conservative, deeply devout and/or religious people. The material is blasphemous and sacrilegious. If you will be making the sign of the cross or searching for your rosary beads when the “F” word and “God” are uttered in the same sentence, then do not go. I repeat, do not go.
     There might have been more “F” bombs dropped during this show than on any Sopranos episode, and I believe it rivaled the total in most Quentin Tarantino films.
     A dismayed friend could not understand how I enjoyed this performance. It was a clever artistic piece of work. Just because I appreciate a performance does not mean that I am going to stop believing in God or that I am going to run around swearing up a storm.
     I am Catholic, and I pray at least one rosary every day. But I can still laugh when something is smart and funny. And I never say the “F” word, let alone the “F” word and “God” in the same sentence. So, I think I’m good. But just in case, I’ll do my self-imposed penance anyway!

     For more information on The Book of Mormon, here’s the official link: http://bookofmormonbroadway.com/

Copyright © 2014 by Suzanne Purewal

I’m Not Like Other Guys

     This is the 6th installment of my Mis-Matched to Miss Matched series, and it’s dedicated to just one bachelor.
     Bachelor #27 and I shared so many interests, it was unbelievable. Every line I read, I smiled and nodded my head. And no pets! Thank goodness. The computer screen told me that we were a 100% match! Could this be possible? After all I’ve been through already, I hoped, and I prayed.
     I’m not revealing his age or profession for reasons that will become clear as you read on.
     After a few email exchanges, we spoke on the phone. His voice was velvety smooth, an easy listening radio voice for sure. That first phone conversation lasted two hours. It felt like mere minutes. We chatted like old friends who were catching up after not speaking for a few months.
     We met for dinner shortly thereafter. Mr. Tall, Dark and Handsome displayed impeccable manners and was very complimentary to me.
     We had similar hobbies and the exact same taste in music. He was also a muscle car guy. A GM muscle car guy. Thank God he wasn’t a Ford or Chrysler guy. (No offense to Ford or Chrysler guys, but I know GM cars. I don’t know squat about the others.)
     Several dinners followed. We enjoyed each other’s company tremendously.
     Then one evening, he said, “We need to talk.”
     Oh crap. Nothing good ever follows those words. I braced myself.
     “There’s something I need to tell you.”
     Maybe his ex’s name is tattooed on him somewhere. Or he’s a convicted felon. A serial killer. Bodies buried in the backyard. I could be next. Mom was right! Or he’s married. Or an illegal alien. Or he works for the Mob. Or worse, he liked “50 Shades of Grey.”
     “I’ve wanted to tell you for some time now.”
     “Okay. I’m listening.”
     “I’m not like other guys.”
     At that moment, I flashed back to the beginning of Michael Jackson’s Thriller video. Those were the words Michael said to his date before he turned into the werewolf. Oh crap.
     “I like ************censored*************.”
     Huh? I was speechless. Utterly. Totally. Speechless. For the first time in my life, I had no words. None.
     This man who I thought could be, “The One,” just confessed his fetish to me. Picture me sitting there stunned. Really stunned. Deer in the headlights stunned.
     Hopefully my mouth wasn’t hanging open. I don’t remember. But it’s fully in the realm of possibility.
     My mind tried to process the words he had spoken. So many questions raced through my mind.
     “Say something.”
     Here is the unfortunate question that popped out: “Does this mean you play for both teams?”
     Disappointed, he answered, “No. I’m straight.”
     “Okay.” Meaning, okay, I heard you. But I still didn’t know what to think.
     I don’t have a problem with this fetish, in general. It’s not illegal or immoral. And I consider myself an open and accepting person. I don’t judge people’s actions when consenting adults are involved.
     “Think about it.”
     There was no doubt in my mind that’s all I would be thinking about in the near future. The question remained, “Could I live with it?”
     I thought long and hard about it for a couple of days. I researched it on the internet. There were psychological explanations and justifications. All agreed it was a harmless practice. Apparently, it is more common than any of us would ever have imagined.
     I finally made my decision. I couldn’t live with it.
     I wanted to, because he seemed like a great guy, otherwise. We had so much in common. He treated me beautifully. Everything had been falling into place.
     But I couldn’t live with this one thing. It was too big. And he wasn’t willing to give it up.
     So, that was the end of that.
     When I told my mother I broke up with him, she couldn’t believe it. “What was wrong with this one? You said he was perfect.”
     “He had a fetish.”
     “Oh my God! Oh my God! Don’t tell me!”
     “But…”
     “No, don’t tell me! I don’t want to know what it is.”
     “It’s not horrible. I just couldn’t live with it. It’s not like he murders people or anything.”
     “No! Don’t say it! I don’t want to have nightmares!”
     “But…”
     “No! Don’t tell me!”
     So that, my friends, is why the fetish is censored. I do not want to be responsible for giving my mother nightmares. Since she loses so much sleep worrying about me to begin with, when she does fall asleep, I don’t want it to be nightmares about this particular fetish.
     I don’t want anyone he knows to find out either. It’s not like he broadcasts this to his family, friends and co-workers. He was a nice guy. It just didn’t work out.
     I think I’m going to watch the Thriller video now. Michael Jackson and Vincent Price—now there’s a perfect combination! Here’s a link to it, just in case you want to see it too. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sOnqjkJTMaA
     Stay tuned for the next chapter, “The Foreign Contingent.”

Copyright © 2014 by Suzanne Purewal

Doctors and Chemists and a Cowboy, Oh My!

     Welcome to the 5th installment of Mis-Matched to Miss Matched. I’m sure you’re wondering if I met a doctor who made house calls, or if I developed an organic relationship with a chemist, or if the cowboy was a stripper or an actual cowboy. There’s only one way to answer your questions. Read on!

     Perhaps it was time to have a doctor in the family. Bachelor #21 was a 45-year-old anesthesiologist. We agreed to meet for coffee. He was handsome and dressed like a professional golfer. But he showed up late. And he didn’t bother to text or call to let me know. A lady does not like to be kept waiting. Strike one.
     He asked me what I wanted to drink and got in line to order. When he returned, he had more than drinks. He purchased brunch. For himself. He didn’t offer me any food. He sat there eating in front of me. Strike two.
     The conversation wasn’t very stimulating. I actually think he could save hospitals money on anesthesia and sedatives by just talking to patients. Boring with a capital “B.”
     He asked how long I’d been divorced. I told him several months. I bounced the question back to him. He responded he wasn’t divorced. It was going to be too expensive. He was currently weighing his options.
     Well, I eliminated one option—me. Strike three. He’s out!

     Bachelor #22 was 50 years old and a surgeon. Another coffee date. However, this one arrived on time, in a black Mercedes. He had a certain air about him as he walked in. As we shook hands, I noticed his bling. Hard to miss it—thick gold chain around his neck, ostentatious rings and a Rolex watch.
     But as the Shania Twain song goes, “That don’t impress me much.” Sorry, but I’m more concerned with what’s inside a man’s head and heart than a flashy outer package. Always makes me wonder what they’re overcompensating for. Anyway…
     I sensed a God complex as soon as he started talking about his grand achievements. Don’t get me wrong, I admire people who accomplish great things. I just didn’t like how he bragged about them. Plus the fact that he wasn’t interested in me. When I told him that I had published a romance novel and a poetry book, I got that look. It’s the “Oh, you’re an artsy, fartsy type” look. I hate that look.
     It didn’t last long. He switched the conversation back to him. He loved to hear himself talk. I admired his perfect manicure as he chattered on.
     Fortunately, he had to get to the office.
     And I never heard from him again. Thank God.

     Fifty-three-year-old Bachelor #23 was a gastroenterologist. Some of my family members were thrilled at the idea of having one of those around. Seriously. My sister-in-law even told me that it didn’t matter what he’s like, I should “take one for the team.”
     Can you feel the love??
     We met for drinks. We had a great deal in common and were never at a loss for words. He was genuinely interesting.
     For those of you who know me, you know I only drink one drink if I will be driving later. One. Count it. One.
     “Have another drink.”
     “No, thank you. I only drink one drink.”
     “Oh, come on. Have another.”
     “No, thank you.” No means no!
     He yelled to the bartender, “Another drink for the lady.”
     I looked at the bartender. “I don’t want another drink. Can I have some water?”
     The doctor insisted, “Give her another drink.”
     “Don’t bother. I won’t drink it.”
     “Well, I ended up with the water and another drink.
     “You haven’t touched your drink.”
     “I told you that I wouldn’t.”
     “What’s the big deal?”
     “It’s not a big deal. But you’re making it one. When I say I’m not going to do something, I mean it.”
     “It’s just one drink.”
     I’m sensing major control issues. “I’m not drinking it.”
     “You should.”
     “No. Thank you for the drink that I did order. It’s time to call it a night.”
     He continued to contact me afterward. I told him to move on.
     Anyone who is that obsessed over getting me to drink something that I clearly don’t want has serious control issues. I can not even imagine what he would be like concerning important things. Yikes!

     I met Bachelor #24, an R&D Chemist, for dinner. The 50-year-old was interesting…on paper. In person, I felt like I was conducting an audit. If you’ve never been prepped for an audit, Rule #1 is: Stick to the facts. Rule #2 is: Do not elaborate.
     It was like pulling teeth. Some answers were one word. Others came in sentence form. Short sentences. I ended up talking most of the time because he wouldn’t.
     At least the food was really good. And I even had leftovers for the next night. So, it wasn’t a total loss.

     I gave another chemist a try. Number 25 picked the same restaurant as the last one. Wasn’t sure if that was a good thing or not. Nevertheless, I knew the food would be good. So, I met the 42-year-old for dinner.
     This guy didn’t have any problems talking. He never shut up. But it was all negative stuff about his ex-wife. The language he used was downright ugly. It was offensive to me as a woman. Granted, she might have been exactly as he described her. But I did not want to hear it. I’m certain the couple behind him didn’t want to hear it. The woman kept giving me looks. She even followed me into the bathroom.
     “That guy you’re with is a jackass.”
     “Agreed. It’s a first date.”
     “Hopefully your last too.”
     “Yes. As soon as the check is paid, I’m out of here.”
     “I’d leave now if I were you. Slip out the back door.”
     I laughed. “My sweater is on my chair.”
     “I’d forget the sweater. Leave now.”
     “It’s a really nice sweater. It took me forever to find it.”
     “Suit yourself.”
     Luckily, he paid the check while I was powdering my nose. I invented a friend emergency and made a quick exit.

     Gather around the campfire for Bachelor #26. I don’t know what it is about cowboys that intrigues us women. Maybe it’s the rugged look about them. Or the fact that they seem to be able to handle any problem that arises better than MacGyver. Or perhaps it’s that they have manners and tip their hats. Or maybe it’s just the tight jeans…
     Although this 50-year-old bachelor had a real job during the day, his passion was his ranch. Our phone conversation was so exhilarating; I violated my “no pets” rule. The tone of his voice was incredible. I had to meet the man on the other end of the phone. Despite the fact that he had dogs and horses.
     Ladies, he did not disappoint. This rugged, clean-shaven hunk of a man wore a black fitted cowboy shirt to highlight his toned upper half. His jeans were broken in in all the right places. And his boots were polished nicely.
     Big & Rich’s song, “Save A Horse [Ride A Cowboy],” played in my head. Goodness! Is it hot in here or just me?
     He was absolutely fascinating. The hours flew by. We were the last people in the restaurant. The waiter vacuumed around us. We took that as our cue to leave. It was a delightful evening.
     As a gentleman should, he walked me to my car. He leaned in, gave me a quick hug and kiss, and he was on his way.
     As I watched him walk to his car, my throat started closing up. I grabbed two Benadryl and my emergency meds out of my purse and swallowed them all quickly. I drove toward home (and the hospital), Epi-pen in hand. Just in case.
     The coughing and wheezing subsided after about thirty minutes. At least I didn’t have to use the Epi-pen, and I didn’t end up in the ER.
     It also meant that no matter how fantastic he was, or how well we got along, or how good he looked in those jeans, there was no chance of a relationship with this man.
     I told him the news. He said that he regretted not kissing me deeply. Dear Lord, if he had, I have no doubt that I would have ended up in the hospital. Although, that would have made one heck of a story.

     Stay tuned for the next crazy episode, “I’m Not Like Other Guys.”

Copyright © 2014 by Suzanne Purewal

Cast Spotlight: Judy Miller

Spotlight-PHOTO-for-Jude_1483-300x180Today’s spotlight is shining on Judy Miller, one of our fearless leaders! And it just so happens to be her birthday. So, Happy Birthday, Judy!

You are going to love Judy’s piece. I didn’t expect it to impact me as deeply as it did. You must hear it for yourself. Here is a link to her interview.
http://listentoyourmothershow.com/indianapolis/2014/04/23/cast-spotlight-judy-miller-2/

Get your tickets online. If you wait to buy them at the door, you must pay by cash or check.
https://tickets.indianahistory.org/Info.aspx?EventID=1

Cast Spotlight: Anna Walker

Anna-300x271Today’s second spotlight is shining brightly on Anna Walker! Her story touched me deeply. And I’m sure it will impact you too. She has had more than her share of adversity. How she continues to handle it makes her an inspiration.

To learn more about Anna, check out her interview with event organizers.
http://listentoyourmothershow.com/indianapolis/2014/04/22/cast-spotlight-anna-walker/

And don’t forget to get your tickets!
https://tickets.indianahistory.org/Info.aspx?EventID=1

Cast Spotlight: Michelle McNally

303380_2856344586711_515674413_nToday’s first spotlight is on Michelle McNally. She is one of our fantastic producers and directors. She lights up a room just by stepping into it.

To learn more about this talented blogger, check out her interview!
http://listentoyourmothershow.com/indianapolis/2014/04/21/cast-spotlight-michelle-mcnally-2/

If you haven’t bought your tickets yet, today would be a great day to do it. Today, 20% of ticket sales goes to Partners in Housing!
https://tickets.indianahistory.org/Info.aspx?EventID=1

Cast Spotlight: Terri Spilman

Terri-225x300Today’s Listen To Your Mother spotlight is shining brightly on Terri Spilman! As event organizers accurately point out, her story rocks! Hers is yet another story that you do not want to miss.

To learn more about Terri, check out her interview with event organizers.
http://listentoyourmothershow.com/indianapolis/2014/04/18/cast-spotlight-terri-spilman/

If you still need tickets, buy them as an Easter gift to yourself!
https://tickets.indianahistory.org/Info.aspx?EventID=1

Cast Spotlight: Suzanne Purewal

SuzanneToday, I get to shine the Listen To Your Mother spotlight on myself! My piece is about Mom and me. Some lines are so funny, I can hardly contain my laughter. So, I guarantee you will laugh out loud. I just hope I can keep it together during my performances!

I reveal several things in my interview with event organizers that I have never discussed before. So, if you want to learn more about me, click on this link!
http://listentoyourmothershow.com/indianapolis/2014/04/17/cast-spotlight-suzanne-purewal/

Buy your tickets today! They’re going fast, and you don’t want to miss out!
https://tickets.indianahistory.org/Info.aspx?EventID=1

Cast Spotlight: Rebecca Hession

Rebecca_Hession_Headshot-280x300Today’s LTYM Cast Spotlight is on Rebecca Hession! I really loved Rebecca’s piece. And her blog is something else.

I guarantee that you want to be in the audience to hear what Rebecca has to say.

Here is her interview with event organizers.
http://listentoyourmothershow.com/indianapolis/2014/04/16/cast-spotlight-rebecca-hession/

Get your tickets today! They’re going fast!
https://tickets.indianahistory.org/Info.aspx?EventID=1

Cast Spotlight: Marge Summers

Marge_Headshot-200x300What a pleasure it is to cast a spotlight on Marge Summers. Her piece was so hysterical, I couldn’t stop laughing. She had us all in stitches. I can’t wait to hear her piece again. Because who couldn’t use a good laugh?

Here is her interview with event organizers. http://listentoyourmothershow.com/indianapolis/2014/04/15/cast-spotlight-marge-summers/

If you haven’t gotten your tickets yet, there’s still time!
https://tickets.indianahistory.org/Info.aspx?EventID=1

Cast Spotlight: Kim Gummere

Kim-289x300

Today’s Listen To Your Mother spotlight is shining on Kim Gummere! She is a talented writer. I wish I could share the topic of her piece, but that’s against the LTYM rules. So, you will just have to come out to hear it in person!

Here’s the link to Kim’s interview with event organizers.  http://listentoyourmothershow.com/indianapolis/2014/04/14/cast-spotlight-kim-gummere/

If you still need tickets, click here. https://tickets.indianahistory.org/Info.aspx?EventID=1

Cast Spotlight: Becky Wood

BeckyHeadShot1-199x300I am pleased to introduce my fellow cast member, Becky Wood! I was lucky enough to be paired up with her for our “getting to know you” session. Among other things, we learned that we both love chocolate, and we are allergic to cats. To learn more about Becky, check out her interview with event organizers. http://listentoyourmothershow.com/indianapolis/2014/04/09/cast-spotlight-becky-wood/

Get your tickets today! Prices go up from $16 to $20 on April 15th! https://tickets.indianahistory.org/Info.aspx?EventID=1

Cast Spotlight: Kerry Rossow

Kerry_Headshot-300x300In my opinion, you can never cast enough spotlights. So, today, I’m featuring a second cast member, Kerry Rossow!

Her piece is laugh out loud funny! She is also a NW Indiana Listen To Your Mother alum.

Check out her interview with event organizers. http://listentoyourmothershow.com/indianapolis/2014/04/07/cast-spotlight-kerry-rossow/

Get your tickets now! https://tickets.indianahistory.org/Info.aspx?EventID=1

Cast Spotlight: Kate Gehan

KateGehanHeadshot-300x199Today’s Listen To Your Mother spotlight shines brightly on Kate Gehan. Kate and I share an interesting geographic coincidence. We both grew up in New York and now reside in Indiana. Her piece is wonderful. I can’t wait for all of you to hear it. Here is a link to her interview. http://listentoyourmothershow.com/indianapolis/2014/04/04/cast-spotlight-meet-kate-gehan/

Come join us on Sunday, April 27th for one of our live performances. Get your tickets for $16 now. Prices go up to $20 on April 15th! https://tickets.indianahistory.org/Info.aspx?EventID=1

Featuring Cast Member Stacy Gray

Stacy headshotToday’s Listen To Your Mother spotlight is shining on Stacy Gray. I had the pleasure of sitting next to Stacy on audition night. We were surprised and delighted to discover we both made the show. What were the chances of that, considering all of the women who auditioned? Here is a link to her interview. http://listentoyourmothershow.com/indianapolis/2014/04/02/cast-spotlight-stacy-gray/

Tickets are currently available for both shows for $16. But ticket prices will go up on April 15th to $20, so get your tickets now! https://tickets.indianahistory.org/Info.aspx?EventID=1

Cast Spotlight: Caroline Hoy Myers

Caroline_headshot-300x300

     Today, I am honored to feature Caroline Hoy Myers! She is another fellow LTYM Cast Member.

     I was totally blown away by Caroline’s piece. And I can’t wait for you to hear it as well. Her story touched my heart and my soul. Here is the link to her interview. http://listentoyourmothershow.com/indianapolis/2014/03/31/cast-spotlight-caroline-hoy-myers/

     It seems fitting to feature Caroline today, because today is her birthday! Happy Birthday, Caroline!

     I sincerely hope you join us for an afternoon of wonderful stories and tales about motherhood. Get your tickets now! They’re selling like hotcakes! https://tickets.indianahistory.org/Info.aspx?EventID=1

Introducing…Amparo de la Peña!

Amparo_Headshot.jpg-300x254     Amparo de la Peña is the first cast member to be featured for this year’s Listen To Your Mother Indianapolis show! There will be two performances this year. They are on Sunday, April 27th, at 1:00 P.M. and 5:00 P.M., at the Indiana Historical Society.
     Although I can not reveal the subject of Amparo’s piece, I can tell you, I related to it personally. I guarantee many of you will too. I am looking forward to sharing a stage with her.
     Here is her interview with event organizers. http://listentoyourmothershow.com/indianapolis/2014/03/30/cast-spotlight-amparo-de-la-pena/

     Tickets are currently available for both shows for $16. But ticket prices will go up on April 15th to $20, so get your tickets now! https://tickets.indianahistory.org/Info.aspx?EventID=1

March Madness

     March Madness is in full swing here in Indianapolis. We’re almost down to the Final Four. The news reports claim that fans’ madness will bring in approximately $20 million to the city. That’s great financial stimulus. But not one dime of that will come from me. I will watch some of the games. I just won’t pay to do it.
     Warren Buffett and Quicken Loans won’t be paying up either. The $1 billion they offered for a perfect predicted outcome in all of the games in the NCAA Tournament is safe. But wouldn’t it have been something if there were contenders still in it? Oh well, there’s always next year.
     Despite the fact that I have lived in March Madness territory for twenty-one years, I have not developed the intense fever that prevails at this time of year. I’m sorry, fellow Hoosiers, but the sloppy, hot and sweaty basketball look just doesn’t work for me. On the other hand, I could watch football all day. Much better uniforms.
     I blame my primary lack of interest in college sports on my college, which did not have any competitive sport teams. Truth be told, I graduated from an institute—GMI Engineering & Management Institute. When my dad went there, it was called General Motors Institute. Picture a bunch of geeks and nerds studying. A lot. Hey, it is in the heart of Flint, MI. We didn’t have much choice. Walking to your car in the parking garage was a death-defying experience.
     I think there might have been some GMI intermural or interfraternal sport things for the jock/nerd combination guy. I didn’t really pay attention. I was busy studying and trying to figure out which boy to date. It was a predominately male student body. So, us girls had plenty to choose from. But I digress…
     My dad adopted Michigan State as his alternate alma mater. Go Spartans! My brother always roots for the University of Michigan. Go Wolverines! Mom and I aren’t sure if he does that just to annoy my dad, or if he just likes them for some other reason. Whatever the case may be, they both root against Notre Dame and Duke.
     Mom and I will root for Michigan State or the University of Michigan, if we’re watching. On the occasions when they play each other, Mom and I do our best to represent Switzerland.
     When I do watch the games, I root for the underdog. What they lack in alumnae funding, they make up for in heart. I love when the little, often ignored school beats a powerhouse. Those are games I can sink my teeth into. They’re fun and exciting to watch. And the press loves to feed us the heart-wrenching background stories of the players and their struggles. Talk about good reality television.
     Unfortunately, there aren’t any underdogs left. But both Michigan State and the University of Michigan are still in it. So, all I have to say today is: Go Spartans! Go Wolverines!

Copyright © 2014 Suzanne Purewal

The Old Bait and Switch

     This is the 4th installment of Mis-Matched to Miss Matched. You always hear men complain about women who post old pictures of themselves on dating sites. Well, I’m here to tell you, men do it too.
     Although I usually go for the nerdy type, I decided to throw caution to the wind and give Bachelor #15, a professional athlete, a try. He sent me a poem about rose petals and the morning dew before we met. Not bad, but not great. I gave him kudos for the effort and agreed to meet him.
     His profile stated he was 48 years old and a non-smoker. The pictures might have been from when he was 48, but he ended up being 58. And he definitely smoked. Why smokers think they can hide their smoking from non-smokers, I will never know. We know. We always know.
     I asked why he lied about his age.
     “Would you have agreed to meet me if I said I was 58?”
     “Honestly, no.”
     “That’s why I lied.”
     “Well, unfortunately, that makes me wonder what else you’re lying about. You lied about smoking too.”
     “So, you have trust issues?”
     “Only with people who lie to me.”
     “Everybody lies.”
     “No, not everybody does.”
     “You’re kidding yourself. Everybody lies.”
     “I’m talking about important things. There’s a big difference between telling a friend her butt doesn’t look big in her new dress when you’re already at a cocktail party and lying about facts, like your age, if you smoke and if you’re really divorced.”
     “I am divorced.”
     “So, one out of three isn’t bad in your book?”
     He smirked.
     “What if I had done the same to you?”
     He appeared annoyed with my question.
     “Seriously. What if I showed up and was ten years older than I said I was?”
     He muttered, “I’d be pissed.”
     “There you go! So, you don’t like to be lied to either.”
     He tossed back the remainder of his drink. “I’m not getting laid tonight am I?”
     Shaking my head in disbelief, I respond, “Not unless you pick up someone on a corner on your way home.”
     On that note, he got up, threw some cash on the table to cover our drinks and left.
     Strike three. He’s out!

     The next contender was a salesman who advertised his age as 49. He turned out to be 54. The ironic thing was that he looked better in person. A lot better.
     “Why don’t you have a more current picture posted?”
     “I figure if someone likes me heavier and with gray hair, then they’ll like me thinner with darker hair.”
     “So it’s like a test?”
     “Yes.”
     “Interesting.”
     “Interesting good or interesting bad?”
     “The jury’s still out.”
     “You’re funny.”
     I wasn’t trying to be funny. I was trying to figure him out. So, I asked him to tell me about himself.
     Big mistake. He droned on and on about all of the “important people” he knew. He dropped so many names that I tripped over them. But he didn’t have any stories about doing anything with them. Boring with a capital “B.”
     My theory is that he hangs out at St. Elmo’s on big event nights and introduces himself to everyone who walks in the door. That would explain how he “knows” the rich and famous.
     When he wasn’t bragging about the people he knew, he pointed out his designer clothes and how he only wore the very best. He proceeded to rattle off all of his favorite designers and stores.
     Okay, I’ll admit that I watch Project Runway. I’m familiar with high-end designers and fashion. I’ve shopped in the boutiques and stores in New York City, and I own a few nice designer items. But I don’t talk about them, ad nauseam. Sheesh.
     Bachelor #16 never got around to asking me much of anything. So, that was the end of that. The jury’s verdict is in: Guilty of being a boastful, materialistic, narcissistic jerk.

     Bachelor #17 was a 46-year-old entrepreneur who owned multiple residences in several states. We had a great deal in common. At 99%, we were almost a perfect match according to Match.com’s algorithm. He was a thin, handsome man, with a full head of black wavy hair and a smile that could knock you over.
     No coffee or drinks for this guy. He went straight for dinner. A girl has to eat, so I agreed.
     As I entered the restaurant, I searched for the dashing man in the pictures. Imagine my surprise when instead, I was greeted by an 80-pound heavier Mr. Comb-Over. The smile was still there. Thank God for small favors.
     After chatting for a few minutes, he revealed that his pictures were from ten years ago. All I could think about was shaving his head. The comb-over look is wrong on any man. Period.
     Our date went well. He was easy to talk to, and we had no shortage of topics to discuss. At the end of the evening, he insisted on buying my books. So, I signed copies for him, and we agreed on a second date.
     The second date went just as nicely as the first. He gushed over my poetry book. He even started quoting some of my work. How refreshing that a man was taking a genuine interest in me.
     After that date, he started reciting other people’s poetry to me over the phone. Then the texts started. Lots of texts. Late at night. First, it was rambling poetry. Then, it morphed into sexting. Obsessive sexting. I told him to stop. He didn’t. His sexting became more graphic. It gave me the creeps. I told him I was done and not to contact me again.
     He was hurt and didn’t understand why.
     I did not want to upset this creepy, obsessive, stalker kind of guy. So I told him he reminded me of my ex-husband and left it at that.
     He bought my story, hook, line and sinker, and left me alone. Thank you, God!

     Bachelor #18 was a doctor. We were the same age. Match decided we were a 100% match. Imagine my mom’s reaction being something like, “Oh, a doctor! I hope this one works out.”
     The doctor and I chatted on the phone and agreed to meet for coffee. Since I don’t drink coffee, I ordered hot chocolate.
     He was shier than I had anticipated. And he wore a Panama Jack style hat that he never removed. A wee bit eccentric, perhaps. But I’m used to eccentric. The conversation went pretty well, but he had to leave after an hour. We agreed to meet again.
     The next time, it was for a drink. And again, only for exactly one hour. My instincts were telling me something was rotten in Denmark.
     And sure enough, I was right. After some relentless questioning, he admitted he wasn’t divorced. He was meeting with me when he should have been watching his son play soccer.
     Slime ball. “So, you’re a liar, a cheater and a lousy father? What a sad excuse of a man you are. You’re despicable.”
     “And I guess you’re little Miss Perfect?”
     “I’ll be the first one to admit that I’m not perfect. But I don’t tolerate cheating, and I don’t date married men.”
     I wished that my glass had been full. I could have made a dramatic exit by throwing the contents in his face and storming out. Alas, there wasn’t a drop remaining. So, I just grabbed my purse and left.

     Bachelor #19’s profile indicated he lived in Indianapolis. We hit it off over the phone. He asked to meet somewhere around South Bend.
     “That’s almost three hours away. We can wait until you’re back in town to get together.”
     “Um. I live in Chicago.”
     “Your profile says you live in Indy.”
     “Yeah, I can’t find anyone nice in Chicago.”
     Really?? “Chicago is a huge city. And it has tons of suburbs. I think you need to try a little harder to find someone in your area.”
     “Nope. I’ve looked. There isn’t anybody.”
     Red flags are popping up everywhere. If this guy can’t find someone in all of Chicago and the surrounding areas, something is seriously wrong with him. “I’m sorry, but I don’t do long distance relationships.”
     “You could move up here. I’ve got a nice place. You could stay with me.”
     Riiiiight. Not on your life, buddy. I watch CSI and Criminal Minds. “I’m not going anywhere. Good luck to you.”

     A 28-year-old salesman was pitiful Bachelor #20. His profile stated he lived in Dayton, OH.
     “I’d like to meet you for coffee sometime.”
     “Sorry, I don’t do long distance relationships.”
     “I live in Castleton, IN.”
     “So, do you work in Dayton?”
     “I work in Indy.”
     “If you live in Castleton and work in Indy, why are you saying you live in Dayton?”
     “I don’t want my coworkers to see me on here.”
     “Why? If they’re on Match too, what’s the big deal?”
     “Idk. I’m embarrassed.” (Idk is “I don’t know” for you non-texting readers.)
     “That makes no sense. There’s no reason to be embarrassed. You need to update your city, or you are never going to find a match.”
     “I’m afraid they’ll make fun of me.”
     Wow, kid. You need to grow a set. “Forget about your coworkers. If they make fun of you, they’re not your friends. Change your city.”
     “I’ll think about it.”
     “You need to surround yourself with positive, supportive people. You need to do something to boost your self-confidence, or you’re going to get eaten alive out there. That pertains to your business and personal relationships. Whatever your story, you need to get your head on straight. It will make a world of difference.”
     “You seem nice and smart. Will you meet me?”
     “No. You’re too young anyway. Change your city, and hang out with positive people.”
     “Thx.”
     “You’re welcome. Best of luck.”

     The more dates and interactions I have, I realize that I should have gone into psychology. These guys need serious help.
     Here’s some free advice for everyone—be honest. It is the best policy.

     Oh well, back to site I go. Stay tuned for the next episode, “Doctors and Chemists and Cowboys, Oh My!”

Copyright © 2014 by Suzanne Purewal

See Me Perform Live On Stage!

     Yes, friends, I will be performing live! I am thrilled to be part of the cast of “Listen To Your Mother!” What is “Listen To Your Mother?” Well, click here to see what it is all about. http://listentoyourmothershow.com/indianapolis/
     As you can see from their website, I will be reading my own original work on stage, along with thirteen other creative women.
     There are two shows on Sunday, April 27th. For show times, tickets and more details, click here:  https://tickets.indianahistory.org/Info.aspx?EventID=1

     Ticket prices go up after April 14th, so get your tickets now! Hope to see you there!

Searching For Mrs. Robinson

the graduate    Welcome to the third installment of “Mis-Matched to Miss Matched.” If you missed the first two installments, this series is about my adventures on the Match.com dating website. The subjects for this post were younger than most. I debated whether I should entitle this article, “Searching for Mrs. Robinson” or “Hot for Teacher.” Initially, I wanted to call this “Hot for Teacher.” But the more I wrote, the more I liked “Searching for Mrs. Robinson.”

     You could tell Bachelor #11 was trouble by his profile picture—an all-American boy with a mischievous twinkle in his eye. You know the kind—trouble with a capital “T.”  I refer to him as a “boy” because he was a 24-year-old college student, and technically, I am old enough to be his mother.
     “Came across your photo. Couldn’t resist. Please give me your number.”
     “Sorry, but I think you should look for someone more age appropriate.”
     “I don’t mind. Give me your number.”
     “Well, I do mind. You should find someone your own age.”
     “No, you’re what I’m looking for. You’d make a good teacher, I bet.”
     “I’m not interested in teaching you anything, except for, possibly, manners.”
     “That sounds kinky. Give me your number.”
     Sheesh. “I wasn’t trying to be coy. I’m not interested. Good luck finding a match.”
     “What’s coy?”
     “Find a dictionary and look it up.”
     “Are you a librarian? Do you wear those tight skirts and your hair up? I’d like that.”
     I’m sure you would. “I’m not interested. Good luck finding a match.”

     Next up was Bachelor #12, a 35-year-old consultant.
     “How are you? I am hesitant to reach out to you. Mainly because I am putting myself in a position to be ridiculed and/or rejected. But, my hope is that you will respect my candor and honesty, as opposed to being offended.”
     “Well, you haven’t offended me yet. And I appreciate candor and honesty. So, go ahead.”
     “I really haven’t been very active in the dating scene and/or on this site. So, I found myself wondering ‘why am I on this site?’ the other day. I truly couldn’t answer that question, lol. However, I think I’ve realized that I want something new, exciting, and…not boring. I want to meet a woman at least 5 years outside of my age bracket, who is interested in a professional, vibrant, intellectual, witty, younger man.”
     “You have piqued my interest. I don’t mind dating a younger man. So, that’s not an issue. And I definitely agree that a relationship should be exciting, not boring.”
     “Now, here’s the catch. I’m not wanting a serious relationship. Not dead-set against it, but just not prioritizing it. I am very focused on my career and have goals to accomplish (just as you do, I’m sure). In all honesty, I’d love to meet a woman who craves and desires a younger man…even if she’s never been with one. I have a feeling that ‘older’ women appreciate a younger man’s intimacy, so long as he is energetic, passionate, and unselfish….oh, and privy to what will make her feel ‘euphoric’. Actually, that last one should probably be a pre-req for both sides, lol.”
     Euphoric? Well, who wouldn’t want to feel euphoric? And when was the last time any man wanted to make me happy, let alone euphoric?
     I reread his reply again, just to make sure I understood him clearly. But, then I got distracted by the whole “energetic, passionate, unselfish” bit. If any woman deserved a man who was energetic, passionate and unselfish, it was me. Visions of satin sheets, rose petals and candles flooded my mind. Then, I read it again for good measure.
     I have to admit that was the best soliloquy I’ve read that boils down to, “I just want to have sex. And I promise you’ll enjoy it.”
     And while I attempted to entertain the idea of this euphoric opportunity for a split second, my mother’s voice was screaming in my head, loud and clear. “Are you crazy? Have you completely lost your mind?!?”
     Fear not, Mom. I want to be in a serious relationship, not be some young stud’s booty call. And in all honesty my friends, I did not want to endure the inevitable, extremely awkward lecture from my mother. So, you’re asking, “Why on earth would you tell your mother?”
     I wouldn’t have to tell anybody. If Mr. Booty Call lived up to expectations, I am guessing everyone who saw me or spoke to me would notice my new, improved blissful state of being. You know that state—you are floating on air, the sun is always shining and everything is happiness, butterflies and rainbows. Okay, maybe it wouldn’t be exactly like that. Although it might be worth it to test my theory! (Just kidding, Mom.)
     Anyway…I wrote back to Mr. Booty Call. “I am flattered. But I am not interested in that type of relationship. However, I must compliment you on how eloquently you expressed the bottom line. I’m sure there is a woman out there who will be happy to oblige.”
     “I sincerely apologize if I’ve offended you.”
     “You didn’t offend me. Dating sites aren’t for the faint of heart. I wish you luck finding a match.”
     “Thank you. I wish you all the best on this site and in your other dating endeavors.”

     Unlucky Bachelor #13 was a self-proclaimed virgin at the age of 30. He was a computer specialist. I know, cliché. But it gets even worse, so keep reading.
     “I would be honored if you would be my Padmé Amidala to my Anakin Skywalker.”
     Heavy sigh. “Sorry, but Anakin becomes Darth Vader. And I don’t feel like fighting any wars against the dark side. I wish you the best and may The Force be with you.”
     “You could be Princess Leia. I could be Han Solo.”
     He did not have a picture posted. So, unfortunately, at this point, I’m imagining he’s probably more like Jabba the Hutt. And I have a strong aversion to chains. And I would not be caught dead with a pair of Cinnabons covering my ears. “I’m sorry, no. I wish you luck in finding a match.”
     “I’ll be anyone you want me to be. Just name it. I have an awesome costume collection.”
     Oh yikes. I’m sure you do. I pity this kid. “I am not interested. However, in the future, when contacting other women, I suggest that you be yourself. Save the characters for later.”
     “OK. Thanks.”
     Call me old-fashioned, but I think you should know the guy’s name and perhaps meet him in person before delving into role playing fantasies and discovering whatever else he is hiding in his closet. This poor guy is going to need the full power of The Force behind him to find a woman.

     Oh ladies! I wish I could post Bachelor #14’s picture. He was a very handsome man. In his profile picture, he was impeccably dressed in a classic black tuxedo. That 28 year-old could have had a spread in GQ, or any other magazine his heart desired. He was absolutely, positively gorgeous and quite the catch for someone. An MBA wasn’t enough for him. He’s currently pursuing a law degree.
     “I would love the opportunity to speak with you.”
     Why couldn’t you be ten years older? “Thank you. But I think I’m too old for you.”
     “Please don’t dismiss me yet. I am looking for a mature woman. I’m not interested in needy, clingy girls. I’m looking for a woman who I can have stimulating…”
     Oh geez. Here we go.
     
“Conversations. I’m looking for a woman who I can have stimulating conversations with. Sorry. My finger slipped and it sent before I was finished.”
     Good recovery.
     
“I like intelligent conversations on a variety of subjects. I’m looking for a sophisticated woman who can hold her own and would make a good impression at black tie events, law firm events, symposiums, etc. You seem to have a wide range of interests, you’re educated and you’re very attractive. I need someone like you by my side.”
     Searching for smart arm candy, are you? Now that’s something that would be great on a resumé — Intelligent Arm Candy, well-versed in a variety of topics.
     
“Thank you. But this sounds more like a job than a romantic relationship. I am not the right woman for you.”
     “I’d like to object. I believe you are.”
     Seriously? You objected? “Sorry, you’re overruled. We are at different stages in our lives. Trust me; I know what I’m talking about. This is not open to debate. I wish you well.”
     “Thank you for your time. Best of luck to you.”

     At this point, I’ll take luck or The Force. Whichever works more quickly…

     Stay tuned for the next chapter in my ongoing saga, “Bait and Switch.”

 

Copyright © 2014 by Suzanne Purewal

 

 

Featuring Author Debi Hurt

debi cook book     Today’s Pursuing My Passion spotlight shines brightly on author, Debi Hurt. In addition to creating Pen It! Magazine, she has published five books, including a children’s book and a cookbook. Debi is a wonderful resource for fellow authors, teaching classes, conducting workshops and hosting conferences. She has several exciting projects in the works!

When did you start writing?
     I think I have written since I could write!  My grandmother used to read me stories when I was very small, and eventually I started telling her the story back without even knowing how to read….and I would embellish! LOL.

What is your favorite type genre to write?
    I like to write poetry and children’s books. I like fiction, but I think it is probably the hardest for me to write. Probably because I mainly read non-fiction.

Where does your inspiration come from?
debi3   
I like to sit somewhere where there are lots of people, have a pencil and paper and just listen to conversations. You can get some great inspiration that way. Also, I love the books “The Pocket Muse.” There are two of them and they are awesome!

You organize many workshops and classes. When and why did you decide to help others with their writing?
    
I don’t think I “decided” to help others. It just transpired that way. I have always been a “nurturer” my mom calls it, and I love to help others. Writing is a passion and when I see someone else with that passion, it is my natural inclination to help them. I’m a real “people person.”

You publish PenIt! Magazine and Heritage Magazine. Tell me a bit about them.
    Pen It! Magazine is a bi-month E-Magazine for Writers (and readers alike). It started out as a published magazine, but has since gone to an E-Zine because of the huge expense involved in printing and mailing of magazines. Pen It! Magazine has a wealth of information for writers:  Articles on writing, poetry, short stories, information on local authors’ books, author of the month, and much more. This is our 4th year and I am very proud of it. Since it is now an E-Zine the subscription rate has been significantly decreased from $40.00 a year to $15.00 per year. debi pen it

     The Heritage Magazines are published individually for people who have researched their heritage and want to put it in a magazine-style publication, so that they can share it with relatives. I have done several of these and they are a great keepsake.

What has been your favorite project to work on?
  
I love working on the Workshops/Conferences that I promote. They are fun and I get to meet so many new/upcoming authors and make some lasting friendships. The one I sponsored at The Crump Theatre was really great. It was October, 2012, and we had a great turn-out.

Who are your favorite authors/books?
   
For someone who reads mostly non-fiction, my favorite author is a fiction author:  Jonathan Kellerman. He writes the “Alex Delaware” novels. They are about a psychologist/sleuth! I like them because they are continuing characters. I have been reading his books since the 80s. I am also a big Shakespeare fan! I saw a play when I was 14 (The Taming of the Shrew) through school and I was hooked!

Tell me about the books you’ve written.
 debi donnie dachshund  
The Daring Adventures of Donnie the Dachshund is my children’s book. It is about a little dachshund who thinks he is the “Big Dog on the porch” until his owner brings home a little puppy. I hope to write at least two more books in the series.

     The Quest for Shireman is my young adult to adult novel. It is about a young girl (14), Olivia Shireman. Her father passed away a year ago and on the anniversary of his death, she takes a horrible fall from her horse. She wakes up in another land where she finds that her father may be there, searching for something he lost. She makes wonderful friends and begins her quest to find her father.debi shireman

     Recipes from a Country Cook is my cookbook. They are all my own recipes and are just down-home cookin’ style!

     Ride the Spirit Horse is a collection of my poetry and short stories.

     Writing Creatively is my most recent book. It is a “how to” book on Creative Writing taken from the classes that I teach. I teach creative writing via one-on-one Email classes and have taught at the Mill Race Center in Columbus, Indiana.

What can we expect next from you?
     March 15th I will be doing a Conference on Publishing your book as an E-Book at the Bartholomew County Library in Columbus…and I hope to hold an Authors/Vendors Spring event.

     My sixth book, The White Sofa, will be out some time this year. It is a suspense novel about a young artist who has a nervous breakdown and the psychologist who works to bring her back to sanity.

To find out more about Debi Hurt, the latest Pen It! Magazine contest, and her upcoming events, contact her at: Debih7606@frontier.com.

Copyright © 2014 by Suzanne Purewal

World Cancer Day

CourageToday is World Cancer Day. And I am pleased to announce that I am 12 ½ years cancer free. When people asked me today how many years I have been cancer free, I’ve been rounding up to 13 years. That is what I posted on my Facebook Page. But for this blog post, I decided not to round. Perhaps because I need to express “the half.”

When we were children, we always gave our ages in halves. Back then, those milestones were important. As adults, we round. Sometimes we round up, other times, as with our ages, we round down. Of course some adults pretend to forget their ages, and others refuse to acknowledge them entirely. However, I just realized at this very moment, “the half” is important again.

It’s funny how something as basic as time becomes so critical, especially when one does not have much of it left. Or the perception of living on borrowed time comes into play.

I am one of the lucky ones. My cancer was caught early. The tumor was removed, albeit in multiple surgeries, but nevertheless, it was cut out of me. The radiation treatment afterward was otherworldly. In my opinion, the treatment and subsequent side effects were worse than the cancer. But I, like so many others, persevered. I moved forward, slowly but surely.

The scar left much deeper wounds than I anticipated. Due to the multiple surgeries, the incision did not heal properly. Even scar revision surgery did not work. For quite some time, all I saw when I looked into the mirror was that scar. I felt ugly and broken, exhausted mentally and physically.

People made unbelievable comments about my scar. “Frankenstein” came up frequently. One of the commonly used phrases was, “Well, it’s not that bad.” Never once did I ask anyone how bad my scar looked. So, the unsolicited comments made the situation worse. My brother thought their comments were as ridiculous as I did. He decided to mock them. He would joke, “Oh, it’s such a pretty scar!”

I have to say he made me laugh every time he said it. Thank you, Timmy.

Humor is how my family deals with adversity. And it helps. Tremendously. And it keeps everyone in the hospital wondering what we’re up to in our hospital room. And when the nurses and the rest of the staff started laughing, it would carry into other patients’ rooms. Laughter is contagious. And it is good for the soul. And that’s not just a line I’m trying to feed you. It works, and it’s a gift that keeps on giving.

I honestly don’t know how I would have gotten through those dark days without my loved ones and the laughter and mayhem they created. I can not thank my family and friends enough for their love and support, and the seemingly endless stream of “Get Well” chocolate.

Today, I am praying for each and every one of you who has been touched by cancer. I hope that you feel the love, peace, happiness and understanding that I am sending your way. All I ask in return is that you celebrate a part of each day with a little laughter, whether it is for a half an hour or a half a day. Because halves do count.

Copyright © 2014 by Suzanne Purewal

Worst Pick Up Lines Ever

     My girlfriends and I love going out for dinner, drinks and dancing. We enjoy drama-free nights out with the girls. However, inevitably, we are approached by less-than-desirable men looking for a good time. Here are the worst lines we have heard recently.

20130406_13133910. My buddy and I noticed you from across the bar. I really love your spangly bracelets.
     Sure, it was my spangly bracelets that caught his attention. Not. I was wearing an outfit similar to one I wore for my professional photo shoot. So I had the romantic vibe going, including soft waves in my hair, flawless makeup and a hint of cleavage. Needless to say, after we stopped laughing, we sent him on his merry way. However, I gave him points for effort and creativity!

9. I think we would make beautiful music together.
     Not really a bad line, in and of itself. I gave him points for creativity. But when a guy old enough to be your father, wearing a zoot suit, delivers it, it is just creepy.
     “No, thank you. You’re not my type.”
     “What’s your type?”
     I wanted to say, “Someone who’s not my father’s age.” Instead, I rattled off a list.
     “I don’t like what’s on your list.”
     “You don’t have to. It’s my list.”
     “There are a lot of things missing from your list.” And then, he proceeded to tell me the attributes that should have been on my list.
     I reiterated that I was not interested, but he would not leave. However, within moments, I was saved. He had signed up to sing karaoke, and he was up. Thank you, God!

8. How’d you get that scar on your neck? Did you have a tracheotomy?
     What a jerk!
     “No, I had cancer. Great way to start and end a first conversation.”

white black jeans7. Nice jeans.
     Attention ladies! This is a “politically correct” way for a guy to tell you that you have a nice ass. Apparently, it has replaced the wolf whistle and other direct commentary that could be construed as sexual harassment. I did not bother to acknowledge his presence. But, to tell the truth, they were nice jeans. Actually, they were my favorite jeans, found at White House | Black Market. http://www.whitehouseblackmarket.com

6. My friend and I have a bet going. Are those real?
     Seriously?
     “Yes, my eyes are this color. I’m not wearing colored contacts.”
     “That’s not what I meant.”
     “I know. But that’s the only answer you’re getting.”

5. You’re hot. I’m hot. Let’s f***.

     Are you kidding me???
     “Oh hell, no!” Picture me rolling my eyes and shaking my head in total and absolute disgust.

drink - Copy4. What are you drinking?
     Okay, the question is not the problem here, it was the conversation that followed that did him in.
     “Ginger ale with cranberry juice.”
     He laughed and replied, “I want to buy you a real drink. Order something strong.”
     “Nope. This is what I’m drinking. I already had my one alcoholic drink for the evening. I’m the designated driver.”
     “That’s ridiculous.”
     “No.”
     “Come on. I want to talk to you.”
     “And you can’t talk to me unless I’m drinking alcohol? That’s pretty pathetic.”
     “It levels the playing field.”
     “I’m not interested in playing games. Go away, and grow up.”

3. You girls are gorgeous. Have you ever considered doing porn?
     This guy approached us from behind and put one arm around each of us. We immediately pulled away and told him to get away from us. Eeeewwwww! No matter how hard we tried, no amount of antibacterial wipes could make us feel clean after that.

2. I’m a single dad with four kids under the age of five. I’m looking for somebody to raise them for me.
     Well, good luck with that!
     While we were laughing, he explained he liked to cruise around on his motorcycle. He was searching for someone to raise his kids for him, so he can gallivant around the country. We suggested he hire a nanny.

1. I loved 50 Shades of Grey. How about you?
     “Hated it.”
     “How could you hate it? It was fantastic.”
     “The plot was ridiculous. It was poorly written and 200 pages too long.”
     “Come back to my place, and I’ll convince you otherwise.”
     “I can’t say ‘no’ strongly enough.”
     “I’ll have you saying ‘yes’ and begging for more.”
     “Not in your wildest dreams.”
     “I guarantee to make your wildest dreams come true.”
     “Really?”
     “Yes.”
     “My wildest dream is for you to leave us alone.”
     And with that, he called me the “B” word and left. Gee, if only all of my dreams were that easy to fulfill! 

     Despite dealing with unwelcome advances, my girlfriends and I will continue to go out and enjoy each other’s company. And, if nothing else, we will end up with some really interesting stories to share!

Copyright © 2013 Suzanne Purewal

Dare to Dream

indiegogo_picture 2My “Dare to Dream” Campaign on Indiegogo is live!

To read more about this cause and the perks you can get for contributing, please click on this link:  http://igg.me/p/296653 

My Mission
is to serve as an advocate for cancer patients, survivors and caregivers, as well as those who have experienced personal loss or trauma; to provide a forum using printed and social media to communicate their struggles and triumphs; to provide hope and resources to others facing similar challenges.
 
My Goal is to encourage and empower women and men to overcome the adversity in their lives and to channel that adversity into pursuing their true passions.
 
You might be struggling to pursue your own passion. With that in mind, I will select six donors to be featured on this blog. If you wish to be considered as a featured guest blogger, please send me an email at: purewalpublishing@gmail.com and tell me about your passion.
 
I can not do this alone!
 
I ask that you please share and support my campaign with your circle of friends and family via email, Facebook, Twitter, Blogs, etc.
 
One small act of kindness really can make a big difference!