Stella Dixon’s take on romance at the shore – where the odds are good, but the goods are seriously odd.
My sister is getting married. As maid of honor, I’ve learned that selecting a dress, a venue, and a color scheme requires excruciating deliberation. Personally, I think if a girl can find the guy, deciding on a couple of flower arrangements should be a piece of three-tiered, vanilla sponge cake. Considering the sheer number of folks tying the knot lately, finding the guy doesn’t seem like it should be all that that hard, either.
But committing to one person ‘til death do you part has always seemed a mind-boggling feat to me. Then again, commitment of any kind is difficult: I spend 20 minutes deciding between mouthwash brands. No one else seems to have this problem. While my girlfriends spend Saturday night looking over boutonnières with their betrothed, I am likely crying into my pillow while Boyz-II-Men plays on repeat.
My single status makes me wonder if my standards could be too high. Recently, I read a study which found generic mouthwash to be just as effective as brand-name competitors. I wondered: is being picky overrated?
I didn’t used to think so. Ask any woman what she’s looking for in a man, and she’ll tell you it’s a sense of humor she values most. This is not something I have been able to understand. Who cares if a guy can tell a couple of knock-knock jokes if the ultimate punch line ends up being that he’s sleeping with his secretary? If it’s merely humor we’re after, we have set the bar quite low. I’m looking for smart, honest, kind and loyal: funny I can get from the Ramblings column in EZ.
But last week, decked out in yet another crinoline-lined bridesmaid dress, I doubted whether my expectations were realistic. I announced that I’ll no longer be seeking the dream guy. I’ll be shooting, instead, for the mediocre guy. I’ll settle for run-of-the-mill looks, second-rate smarts, and, so I don’t end up with a complete dud, a sense of humor. If I continue holding out for Prince Charming in Cape May County, I might end up an old spinster, my apartment full of fluffy cats and fluffier bridesmaid dresses.
In the sprit of mediocrity, I agreed to a date with a fella by the name of Carl. Carl used three different slang words for female genitalia over the course of our Lucky Bones dinner, and when the bill came, he asked if I wouldn’t mind picking up the check. In Carl’s defense, he did tell a couple of so-a-nun-walks-into-a-bar jokes that weren’t too bad.
Alas, I don’t envision any “I do”s in our future. There are certain things in life just not worth skimping on. Dental care is one; men are another. When it comes to oral hygiene and husbands, I won’t ever settle for generic.