Sunday, January 19, 2003


It is curious. I just noticed this recently.

I can't remember the names of any of my bad dates.

I remember the names of all the guys I dated for any length of time. But all the nightmare dates? While I can remember details, their names have been erased from my RAM. Does this mean I'm an optimist? Or that my brain is full?

I was watching "To Live and Date in New York-2" which appears on the local metro NYC station, with fascination, horror, loathing, fascination. It is, simply, a reality show using some of the premise of "Sex and the City" (impossibly attractive single straight women date in New York) without the glue of any of the women being friends with each other. I think there are eight women, and the show lasts an hour, so since none of the women are friends, the show's producers cut frantically around the various dates that the women have..or, in some cases, don't have.

There's a lot of half-time chatter. Both the woman and the man will sort of step out of their date to discuss how the date is going, whether they are going to score. The selection of the women is high on whiteness--there is a single woman of color--and high on the glamor professions--actress, gossip columnist, model, "party girl" (dang, who knew that could be a job), event planner, investment banker, "business consultant," and, um, "aspiring rapper." The aspiring rapper is, improbably, a creamy-cheeked Brit with mega-connections--she gets invited to parties where she buttonholes Marianne Faithfull and grills her for career advice. (I so wanted Marianne to tell her to either "fuck a Rolling Stone or fuck off," but it didn't happen.)

Some of the women seem nice, particularly the event planner/booker, and a surreally effervescent actress. But so far, of the two episodes I've watched, the dates have been the least interesting part of the show. (Okay, the "party girl"'s date tried to hump her on camera, but it's nothing we haven't seen on Oz, and with better pecs.)The biggest drama to date was when the business consultant had an (off-camera) fight with her best friend when they didn't have enough tickets to both attend a swanky Newport party. The fight was so vicious that they ended up kicked out of their host's house AND had to look for a hotel room ("anything but a Travelodge"). The rest of her sequence was less about the hot hunky men at the Newport party, and far more about whether the friendship would be mended.

In short, what Sex and the City does so well.

Well, it makes me very grateful I am sitting out dating, as one of my sisters says, for the 21st century. I am probably not the demographic for this show, living, as I do, in New Jersey, being, as I am, over 40, over 110 pounds, and having been willing to date out of my area code. Or maybe I am. Stop me before I turn into a Stepford Wife, but I have to say that marrying Jeff has been the biggest surprise and thrill of my life. Getting to know somebody better and better is actually quite a wild ride.


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