Actual Los Angeles College Course Synopsis–2009 Fall Semester
Want to learn how to overcome shyness? Now you can—from someone who has been there! The ability to connect with others affects everything we do, from advancing in our careers to attracting a mate. If your shyness keeps you from having the life you want, here’s your chance to learn the secrets to overcoming it. You’ll find out how to appreciate your positive qualities while changing the negative behaviors you want to alter.
By the time you finish this course, you’ll be able to increase your self-confidence while reducing physical symptoms of anxiety. You’ll feel more comfortable initiating both casual and deep conversations, and you’ll know how to relate effectively in romantic situations.
In addition, you’ll learn techniques for effective public speaking, which consistently tops the lists of people’s greatest fears! You’ll have opportunities to practice assertiveness and conflict resolution techniques, and you’ll be able to create your own action plan for achieving the level of sociability that you desire.
Full of encouragement and practical strategies, this course will be your guide to achieving the confidence you need to fulfill your personal and professional goals!
It’s available for only $99 and meets ON-LINE. So; say goodbye to shy and hello to your computer monitor.
Handcuffs on the first date?
No, it’s not what you’re thinking (mind out of the gutter, people!) It’s a datemare story out of the Motor City that we just had to share.
See, these two crazy kids meet at a casino and she agrees to go to dinner with fellow gambler Terrance McCoy. Whatever luck she’d had at the craps tables was about to come to an abrupt end.
Her first clue that this night would not end well? They head to a chicken wings joint. Classy! And as she sat there daintily wiping the hot and spicy sauce off her face, wondering where this new relationship might go, did it ever occur to her that she was on a date with someone who’d ditch her (with the bill) and drive away in her ride?
Well, let’s be fair. Who’d see that coming?
Happy ending: He got caught. (That’s where the handcuffs come in). And the restaurant comp’d her meal.
Get back on that horse, honey, but you should probably ask for a background check next time.
If he walks like a duck and talks like a duck he’s probably in a Militia……
I met my Militia man at a hard rock concert. It should have been a dead giveaway. I know.
He had on a snug leather vest, towered about 6’4, with steely blue eyes, by the looks of it fair looking hair under his baseball cap, and slim jeans that fit ever so nicely around his waist. So although he is in a militia, to his credit, at least they are a well dressed militia.
I mistook our chemistry for the usual rigamarole. I think he took it more as part of an indoctrination ritual whereby I might rent a Ryder truck and perhaps blow up a Government building.
At the very least he made it clear that he didn’t want me to pay personal and federal income taxes.
We spoke sporadically throughout the week and finally settled on a dinner date for the following week. After shooting down a number of ideas that I suggested we meet at, he chose the most obscure Thai restaurant that I’d never heard of.
I should have known something was up.
When we arrived in tandem at the restaurant he made a comment about needing to keep his eyes on the entrance at all times.
If you’re Matt Damon in this melodrama, who am I? In the last Bourne Supremacy the girlfriend gets iced almost immediately. I would prefer to be Geena Davis in the Long Kiss Goodnight thank you very much!
Without fanfare the restaurant door opened and closed all evening without one Federal Agent or Infidel sneaking through. I should know, I watched that door like a hawk!
We passed on dessert as any self respecting militia member would. I think they train for real life scenarios and said scenarios probably include rations but hold the dessert please. We were after all in a war zone called Encino.
The check arrived and that’s when he made his move to pass the contraband. “Listen to this”, he said. Ever so carefully sliding over a DVD in unmarked packaging. Under the glaring flourescent, cafeteria lighting I asked, “what is that?” Very spy like, I know. Mr. Militia leaned in and said “that’s very sensitive information. Not many people in their lives will ever hear about this or even see things like this.” At which point I said, “can I go to jail for anything on here?”
Lets be honest, he was cute but he wasn’t that cute and while I was almost ready to put up with the weird door fetish I wasn’t about to get carted off to jail. The only solemn vow I’ve made is to the preservation of self.
Once we ascertained that the coast was clear we exited the building. I did kiss Mr. Militia and I even took his contraband, but like his kiss the DVD was unremarkable.
I’ll admit that I often fall into the trap of self delusion.
I was getting ready last night to meet a friend at another quaint bar and while I skillfully applied my makeup I thought, I’m not looking
for anyone tonight. Other times I’ll say I’m not interested in meeting anyone but this night it was I’m not looking.
I’m always looking and somehow believe that I can hood
wink the Universe. The same Universe that is constantly conspiring to bless me, but only when I’m not looking?
I hear it over and over again maybe because I ask a lot, “so how’d you two meet?” Inevitably one of the happy duo that I’ve cornered will say, “oh I wasn’t even looking when I ran into so and so. I guess it’s true what they say!” At this point the happy couple look at each other, gush and for dramatic effect plant soft kisses on each other.
I guess I’m stupid because how do you really NOT DO THAT!
Not be looking I mean? I think I might need to fall down and hit my head for that to be the case. Or at least have a seizure or something. Sure there are times when I’m flummoxed and shout in my bathroom, with the shower running so I don’t scare the neighbors, “I’M NOT LOOKING, I’M DONE DATING, I HATE DATING!!” But I’m always looking. I’m looking when I go to Trader Joes, at the bank or while at the gym. Although if things don’t go well you may have to change your gym schedule.
I am constantly looking!
To be fair, I’m not looking when the guy who’s looking that I’m so not interested in is looking. At that point, I’m really focused on myself and my hobbies. Mostly though I’m looking.
The Universe was on to me once again because alas Mr. Sort of Okay was nowhere to be found. Damn I guess you really can’t hoodwink the Universe!
I had a first date with Iron Man, and I so wish I could start rolling out the (nudge, nudge, wink, wink) Man of Steel jokes. Alas, I can’t.
It was a pleasant enough date, if not that remarkable. But a glass-half-full kind of girl — that’s me! — could call it a promising beginning.
Consider this: The guy was smokin’ hot, a triathlete who was in training for his first Iron Man competition (hence, the fitting nickname). If that doesn’t get a girl’s motor running, I really don’t know what would. For me, it worked. Big time.
But there’s a problem. I’m tentative here, with good reason. Once I explain, you may understand why I think this guy, despite his “single” status on Facebook and his apparent interest in me, really isn’t available at all.
We’d met at a party of a mutual friend and the sparks flew. I found out in the space of a few hours that night that a) he’s a world-class kisser and b) he and I have a lot in common, like a love of the outdoors, vintage cars, working out and saving animals. He’s geographically desirable, employed, fun and handsome.
Not so fast.
During several phone conversations we’d had, he mentioned to me some weekend plans that always included a trip to his friend’s house (a woman) who was pregnant as the result of a one-night stand.
A real-life Knocked Up!
But the baby daddy’s not in the picture, and Iron Man empathizes with the tough position his friend now finds herself in. All together now: awwww!
He’s a handy guy and had a list of projects he was working on at her house.
Allow me to cut to the chase. Here’s what I know about men puttering around my own house: I’m either paying them (the plumber, the guy who fixes the old washer and dryer) or I’m sleeping with them (the slicked-back car club Fonzie who used to tinker with my ’66 T-bird). No gray area. He falls into one camp or the other.
Iron Man said he was taking on this work — most every weekend, mind you — out of the goodness of his heart. That may be true, or he may be more attached to baby mama than he’s willing to admit. He says they’re just friends, but does anyone believe that? Really?
Sure I’m a cynic, but there’s an ulterior motive here on one side or the other. Mark my words.
Maybe she sees him as a dear, dependable friend — somebody to take advantage of? — or maybe she’s thinking more long term for Iron Man. He’s a catch, after all (see above: employed, ripped, etc).
Iron Man, bless his heart, seems like he’d be the last person to know if he were being played or manipulated or adored by what’s-her-knocked-up-name.
I said something like, “Aren’t you so nice for helping her out?” Sure, nice, or whatever.
Iron Man had been described to me by that mutual party-throwing friend as “the salt of the Earth.” Does that mean good-hearted? Dumb?
He may not realize the role he’s playing in baby mama’s life. To her, he could be this big strong man who’s really good with his hands and has a soft spot for a gal is distress. Father material! Or he could be a dunce with a tool belt.
She could be the one he wants (temporarily or permanently).
I’m relieved, though, that I didn’t get all silly, weak-in-the-knees for this guy. There’s a lot to like and admire about him. I just think someone else beat me to it.
I never really gave it much thought how and why a guy chooses one date spot over another. That is until I met up with the newest firsty at the Good luck bar in Hollywood.
When we made our date night plans he suggested without any hesitation the Good luck bar. Now the GL Bar is a dive bar amongst many in L.A. and it has a certain flavor to it. They definitely want you to kitsch it up a bit with their fruity libations and eclectic juke box selections. It wasn’t so much the place that he chose but that he chose at all. It’s been a quandary for me in the past when men ask where I’d like to go. I know exactly where I’d like to go (STK, Rivera, La Boheme) but I’m not sure that I’ll be sleeping with you ever and so a dinner date that exceeds your $$$ sensibilities may be out of the question. I don’t want to leave you homeless with a single dinner date that ends with a handshake. So; when a man makes a suggestion I’m not only impressed but relieved. It also gives me a chance to plot my outfit.
So what does this have to do with thanking a guys Ex. Well, when I met my guy at the GL we did the whole ice breaker banter about if I’d ever been there, have trouble finding it etc. I had been there, but years ago, and it looked pretty similar although the bathrooms seemed different? I have a thing about bathrooms. Anyway, as the get to know you chatter continued he casually mentioned that his Ex-girlfriend had brought him here and he liked it.
So; I assumed his casual air and inquired where else he liked to go in Hollywood. As I suspected, he didn’t know of a single other place and took his chances that I would like it here.
Now I know why the bartender looked at me strangely.
They probably see this guy every other weekend with a different girl , but I really wasn’t that miffed. It just made me consider that I might be responsible for YOUR hopes and happiness, should you date my Ex. Which leaves me beholden to YOU should I date your Ex. Which really got me thinking and drinking. Did I owe it to other women to make sure that they have a great date with my Ex?
Would other women knowingly step up to the plate and provide me with a night of bliss and expensive sparkling Rose when things hadn’t worked out for them?
I am THAT person who loves to plan a fun outing whether for my girlfriends or my latest crush. I wondered with all the popularity of movies like Mean Girls and the youtube explosion of girls ganging up on other girls, could we girls finally just get along?
I remember putting a former lover on the spot with ‘a what to do date night’ quandary. Poor guy! How could he ever hope to follow up the politically charged impromptu movie night, followed by drinks on the rooftop of a swank L.A. spot with a hot jazz trio in the background, or the last minute staycation reservation (before it was en vogue) at the quaint French bistro that everyone was raving about in HIS neighborhood.
I gave that boyfriend some good loving and in return he took me to wherever I made a reservation. If it was hot we were there. So; for once I thought enough let the man have his say and choose our destination. He promptly said, “I could never come up with something as exciting as you!” Aw thanks Boo!
Flattered and a little bit flabbergasted too I relented and quickly made a reservation at a new spot with reclining beds on their open air patio. If he was right, he was right. When we broke up I felt I had bequeathed to him a number of great spots to ‘woo’ his next girl and just hoped that I never ran into him with said girl at any of these spots. They were after all still MY spots but I have grown to be comfortable with our joint ownership.
So now let me thank all of the Ex’s, Ex’s. Of course, you’re welcome too!
And to the naysayers that always lament that women don’t work together perhaps this is the type of working together that could be our ultimate coup. Just think, we could eventually wind up dining, drinking and going to every place fashionable. Heck, who knows maybe we could even start a movement whereby Men would get it right in the bedroom, too. Not only great thoughtful dates, but maybe even mind blowing, toe curling, eyes rolled back sex! Who’s with me?
Who do you want to thank and who do you want to say you’re welcome to? Please share!
Just when I’d learned to text with two thumbs and dodged the myspace frenzy, now potential dates want to FaceBook me?
I had ventured out to hear some emo/acoustic music at the local Turkish bar/restaurant Serra, in Studio City. Only in L.A.! The suspect ..I mean potential date waited to approach when I was good and tipsy. At this point the emo rockers had gone home to cry and paint their nails black. I and a happily dating couple made our way to Rocco’s across the street when I finally met him. As I said, I was pretty tipsy at this point (sort of my prerequisite to listen to emo dudes and their feelings) and can’t really remember his name but for the sake of the story lets call him Jason.
Jason in many ways is just my type or at least the genetic footprint I’m looking for. He’s tall, handsome but not too pretty, big and strong looking like he could move a refrigerator if I needed it, somewhat sober meaning he hadn’t had a drop of liquor to drink based on a prior conviction still waiting to go to trial. So yes I guess I like a sense of danger or candor. Take your pick. So we laugh, chat , flirt, talk about things that probably will need to be rehashed when I’m sober. It’s getting late and my crazy in love couple are ready to tear the clothes off of one another and we decide to leave and Jason decides he’s ready too.
Of course, there’s always that awkward moment when you feel as though things have gone well with someone you’ve just met and it seems unclear if he’s going to ask for your number or just say, “hey it was nice to meet you” and go your separate ways.
I know it seems lame that in 2009 I still wait for a guy to ask but honestly I’ve always found that if I start a relationship as an aggressor than I’ll end the relationship as the aggressor with someone crying in their soup and it’s usually not me. So lame as it is I still want a man to ask.
So instead of the usual hemming and hawing Jason said, “I’ll facebook you!” Huh? What does FB have to do with making a first date? Or was this our first date and now we can happily change our status from single, to it’s complicated or are we in a relationship?
It’s not that I’m hiding anything on my FB page but what does a potential date think he’ll find there? Will I seem cuter in pictures than in person? Will my ‘hot’ friends confirm that I too am ‘hot.’ Will my blatant posts about dining, drinking, and the number of quizzes I can take in a day, during working hours I might add, make me seem sexier and more date worthy. Will he pass around my pictures to his friends in order to get their approval.(I had a male roommate once who did this with his buddies and I’m sure he was bragging a bit as she did look hot in that bikini.)
Is this his clever way of stalking me on line, by phone and on my way to work( note to self remove work info ASAP).
Also, when and if I add him on FB he then has access to all my friends, who by the way really are my friends. Sure I’ve added a couple of highschool peeps that I don’t really talk with and might even pass them at the 3rd Street Promenade and never know it. But I still at one time in my life rubbed shoulders with them, had the same creepy Math teacher as they did and learned all about Sex Ed from the school oracle, Shawn Davis.
Is there such a thing as FB envy? I’m not bragging but I do have roughly 200 friends and while that doesn’t compare to Tila Tequila, it begs the question does size matter? So like any tipsy, doe caught in the headlights would do I fibbed and said I’m not on Facebook. Then proceeded to give him my real phone number. Now we wait. When I say “we” I mean my gaggle of girlfriends that have relentlessly analyzed every detail and nuance of that night. I hope he calls I may need to move my Fridge!
His pupils were as big as eight balls when he showed up at my door for our first date. I soon learned there was a reason for that, and my reference to eight ball wasn’t too far off the mark.
Me: Dude, your pupils are huge. (That was a direct question, not merely an observation. I didn’t just fall off the truck yesterday).
Him: Well (slight hemming/hawing)…I had some cocktails today and a few bumps.
It was 7 p.m.
Now if this isn’t a way to impress on a first date, I just don’t know what is. The really stupid part is that I went anyway instead of kicking him out on his drug-addled arse.
See, he wasn’t obviously under the influence. No stumbling, no slurring. Which only means, hey, he’s good at this. That would’ve been my second red flag. But at least I knew he could drive the car.
Since he was the friend of a friend, and could actually be quite charming, I had been looking forward to this date. But any thought I had of salvaging this night went circling down the drain when he quizzed me at dinner about my business writing and how could I possibly buy into all that consumerist crap those companies spewed. (He’d morphed from happy-go-lucky to surly. Guess he was out of bumps).
I started looking for the exits and thought about where and how I could get a cab. Ah, the suburban jungle that is the San Fernando Valley; it ain’t no New York City. A girl’s kind of at the mercy of the date to deliver her back home or the improbability of finding a friend on a Saturday night to come to her rescue.
I decided to risk it one more time — fingers crossed that I’d actually make it home in one piece. But Mr. Jack and Coke was steady as ever as he drove to my house and pulled into the driveway. I got out, slammed the door and never spoke to him again.
Subtitle: Geez, am I glad I never went out with that person.
Here at Me Date Good, we know it sometimes never even gets to the first date. And there could be an immensely good reason for that. Timing’s all wrong. Signals got crossed. God hates you.
On the other hand, it could be the best thing that never happened. In this regular section, we’ll explore datus interruptus (OK, that’s pigeon Latin and we made it up, but you get the idea, right?)