Friday, July 30, 2010

What's With Male PMS?

One of my closest friends once told me that every three months or so he goes through a week of funky moods that I decided should be referred to as Male PMS (MPMS for short). Whenever he has MPMS, I know it. He is irritable, unfriendly and over all, in a crappy mood. To top it off, it doesn't go away for at least 5-7 days!

Yes, women obviously get moody as well, but our moods switch on and off as fast as a light switch. As for me, if I get annoyed about something, the frustration lasts about 30 seconds instead of a whole day or an entire week. I guess everyone is different.

Either way, I was just chatting with a close girlfriend of mine who was telling me about the guy she is seeing and how he gets moody about life, traffic and his job on a regular basis. His MPMS sends her right into a bad mood and has the potential to ruin the time they spend together.

While we were chatting, we decided that male moods, in general, cause men to be mean and take their anger out on other people instead of the actual problem. You see, girls will go on and on with their girlfriends about what's going on, about their feelings and frustrations in life. They sort things out together and talk about the same feelings over and over again, all the time.

I don't know about you, but very few of my guy friends talk to each other about feelings and emotions. So, as far as I'm concerned, they are like high pressured vats of confused feelings that are ready to explode. Suddenly some small thing such as traffic or back pain may cause them to be in a multi-day bad mood or have a huge freak out when the root of the problem could be something else. And even if there is no root of the problem and it's just as simple as traffic or back pain, is it really necessary to get all up in arms?

Now, I'm not saying all men are like this but I do feel that all men experience a certain degree of MPMS whether they are willing to admit it or not. I am also not saying that women don't get moody as well, because clearly we do. I guess I'm just trying to figure out why people get moody and wondering if there is anything that people can do to acknowledge and control their moods. I'm really not sure if that is possible so in the meantime could someone please create Midol for men?

Tuesday, July 27, 2010


I am continuously being asked, "How was the 50 in 50? What did you learn?"

I am still having a hard time answering those questions. It's not that the experience wasn't life altering or that I didn't learn anything, it's simply that it's impossible to sum up in a short, succinct answer.

I usually end up telling people a funny story or two that gets them laughing and asking a bunch of questions about my dates. That's always good for entertainment but as for something I learned, there are were so many lessons that it's hard to know where to begin.

However, when I was out for lunch the other day, one learning that came to me was the fact that men love to talk about their exes. Looking back on the 50 days, I am hard pressed to think of too many people who didn't tell me about an ex or two.

I think that because most people know they were one of my 50 dates, the topic of dating inevitably came up. One thing led to the next and before I knew it, I was listening to a full blown story about my date's ex. I heard about cheating, lying, love, sex and everything else you could possibly imagine.

Why do women get angry when guys want a boys night out? Why do women want to control a guy's schedule? Why do women get jealous if their boyfriend has a female friend?

These are just some of the many common complaints I heard from my dates about their exes. Nonetheless, I think a lot of guys are really hung up on their exes or simply hung up on things their exes did. For example, someone who was cheated on has trust issues. If someone's ex didn't listen, then clearly no other girl is going to listen. If a guy's ex was irresponsible, then evidently every other woman must be irresponsible. Yes, these are also things I heard from my dates.

I'm sure women can be hung up on exes as well but I obviously did not spend time on dates with women to see what they had to say about exes.

But should people talk about their exes? I'm really open to it, but apparently it bothers a lot of people. I guess there is probably some rule about talking about exes but I think, at the end of the day, it just boils down to comfort level and the two individuals who are out on a date.

Friday, July 23, 2010


We are being lied to every day. Politicians lie to us. Car dealers lie to us. Food manufacturers lie to us. The health care system lies to us. We walk around in this world full of distrust and fiction.

Then, what's worse is when someone close to us lies. Has that ever happened to you? It has certainly happened to me more than once. You know, that awful feeling when a close friend or family member betrays your trust? Doesn't that just make you feel sick to your stomach?

Well, what I find more nauseating than that is when I am not true to myself. That's right, when I'm not honest with my true thoughts, feelings and desires. It definitely stinks when someone lies to me but the worst lie of all is one to myself.

It can be so easy to convince myself that I really want something or really want to be somewhere when, in fact, I don't. I make excuses for others' behaviour or even my own. I don't tell the truth because I don't want to face it or I don't want to hurt someone's feelings. I listen to someone else when I really don't believe what they are saying.

This could cause serious problems in so many situations in life but particularly when it comes time for a relationship. I have seen so many people end up in relationships that they aren't sure about or didn't want to be a part of in the first place. I have also heard so many friends tell me that they knew all along it wouldn't last but they stuck with it for months or even years. I have heard others say they ignored red flags and moved forward anyway. Why? What's the point?

I guess it's easier that way, right? Well, lying about true feelings may be easier in the moment but can only cause grief in the long run. And, the last thing we need in life is any more grief. So moving forward, since I don't want to be lied to, I'm going to stop being a coward and be as candid and honest as possible by being true to myself. I challenge you to do the same.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Brain, Heart and Gut

I have written a lot recently about choices and decisions. As I have previously mentioned, we have so many choices these days that it becomes quite tricky to make a decision. I have been working on making decisions and sticking with them but the trouble is, how does one make a decision in the first place?

I was having this conversation with a colleague today because we were discussing how difficult it can be to make significant life decisions. He then said that he uses his brain, heart and gut feeling, which I like to refer to as instinct, when making a decision.

I like this trio. It makes sense.

Now, the problem is that if you don't have the gut feeling, how can you make a decision? Can one rely solely on the mind and/or the heart to come to a conclusion?

I really feel that the gut feeling is, nine times out of ten, the way to go. As humans, we have very strong instincts that at times we ignore or simply do not know how to listen to.

Evidently this applies to everything in life but in particular to relationships. If one is making a decision as to whether or not they want to be with someone or break up with someone or anything in between, it's the instinct that will lead the way. I feel that the heart will create feelings, the brain will assess the situation and then all of that is fed into the "gut feeling." You know the feeling. That sensation at the pit of your stomach that lets you know when something feels right or wrong. Don't ignore it, simply listen to it.

Friday, July 16, 2010

The End of the World

Before I dive into my thoughts on the daunting topic of commitment, I'd like to apologize for not posting this photo earlier. I thought I had put it up but I had a request the other day to see it so I guess I must have forgotten. This is a photo from my first date with 5 Seconds when he brought us to a +15 to act out the end of the world.

Good thing it wasn't actually the end of my existence; but, to me, commitment feels like the end of the world. A few weeks ago I wrote an entry about choices and how nowadays there are so many. I always hear people from older generations say, "You are so lucky. When I was your age I didn't have half the choices and opportunities that you have."

Am I really lucky? Is it really a good thing that there are so many things to chose from? Because really, all of these choices are confusing and making it tricky to make a decision in life.

This obviously doesn't only apply to committing to a relationship but committing to anything as simple as Friday night plans. Since graduating from university I have been lucky to have so many opportunities but the plethora of options has transformed me into an anti-committal human being. And that, that is scary.

I realized the other day that people who flit around and don't do much don't really succeed because they never chose something and stick with it until the end. Something better may come up and one can just flit over to that. This happens in relationships as well where one partner may meet someone else and just skip over to that person. Isn't that terrible?

I do not want to be like this so I am actively going to try to change my ways by committing to more things and not looking back. This doesn't mean I'm going to jump into a relationship, change my career and move into a new house overnight but I have to stop flaking around and actually decide something and stick to it. If you are like me, you have a million ideas floating around in your head of things you'd like to do but you are nervous or scared to dive in. However, I have learned that by putting yourself into a challenging situation, you either float or drown. So far, I have stayed above water so it's time that I challenge myself, stop flaking around, and really understand that commitment is absolutely not the end of the world.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Is This Okay?

Me (to a friend): Hey, do you want to do dinner Thursday night?

Friend: Well, I’m not sure, I’ll have to see.

Me: Oh, what do you have going on?

Friend: I just have to check with _______ (input significant other’s name).

Me: What do you guys have planned?

Friend: Nothing, but I just have to check to make sure that it’s alright to do dinner.

Me: Oh, right.

This type of conversation happens way too often and to this day, I will never understand it. Why do people feel compelled to schedule their entire existence around their significant other’s life?

It is understandable, for example, if Thursday night is “date night” and it is the same every week so if the plan has to change, it’s good to run it by the other person. However, on a given night when nothing else has been scheduled, why must people still check with their boy/girlfriend before making a plan?

It would also be different if kids were in the picture because I understand that one can’t just take off for an evening, leaving the other to hold down the fort. But if it’s just two people who may or may not be living together, should each person not be able to make their own decisions regarding their social schedule?

As the single person, it becomes a bit irritating when people always have to check with someone before committing to do something. However, what’s worse is when people only call me to hang out when their significant other is working or has already made plans. It is not uncommon for a good friend to call me and say: “My boyfriend is working tonight, do you want to hang out?”

So what, the only time we can spend time together is when he is working?

Relationships look like they can be great and a ton of fun. But something about the concept of checking in with someone before making a plan causes my stomach to turn. Hopefully, if I land myself in a relationship, this type of behaviour does not become the norm and I am able to maintain control of my social agenda.

Sunday, July 11, 2010


Think about how hard it is to change something about yourself. If you're like me, that does not happen easily. There is really nothing wrong with that but if it's so hard to change yourself, why do some people think that they can change someone else?

People don't change. At least, it does not happen very often and usually if someone does change, it's only a temporary fix. Old behaviours and habits tend to resurface and one simply cannot alter their values overnight. That would be like asking a dog to become a cat; it just doesn't happen.

The other day, a few of my male friends were talking to me about some of the women who have dated them and got into the relationship because to these women, it was like a project. They wanted to have a boyfriend who they could work on and mold to be exactly what they want.

I thought that that was ludicrous. It just doesn't make sense to me! Men are not silly putty to be molded into the perfect, dreamy man. I think that if that's what some women are doing, they really have to re-think their tactics and the men they are choosing.

People can stop biting their nails or start putting their socks in the hamper but big changes can't happen via nagging. If someone wants to make a significant change it has to come from within and not because their significant other wants them to be a certain way.

My Dad once said to me, "If someone does something that bothers you once, it could just be a slip. However, after two or three times, it's a pattern and it won't change. So either you accept it or you move on."

Being an engineer, my Dad does see things in black and white but nonetheless, he made a valid point. He told me this a few years ago when I was dating a guy who was regularly making commitments and then failing to follow through. It was driving me crazy and even after addressing my concern with him, he continue to make promises that he wouldn't keep.

So I listened to my Dad's words of wisdom and broke up with the guy. He wasn't going to change and I certainly wasn't going to change him. People are the way they are and it's important to like someone for who and how they are and never try to alter their ways because I think that that will only lead to pain and frustration and life is too short for that.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010


Wow, it has been a while since I’ve written. My vacation pulled me away from this cyber abyss and into a glorious world of endless mountain biking, hanging out on the beach and chilling with good friends. It was a fantastic week but today it was back to reality. Back to work, back to the grind, back to the rat race.

There was so much excitement over the past week but one thing that I want to talk about is insecurities. We all have them, we all experience others’, but we don’t all recognize them.

Insecurities can cause people to act out of line, to lash out at others and overall, to feel badly about themselves. This topic just came to mind because when I was in Vancouver last week-end, I saw a couple fight in a way that I had never before seen.

I was at a party at someone’s condo and towards the end of the night, we could all hear screaming and loud banging coming from the bathroom. At first, I thought the two of them were in there having a good time but it didn’t take long for me to realize that the banging was not from pleasure and the screams were not orgasmic.

I could hear the girl screaming at her boyfriend about how she feels that he doesn’t prioritize her. The whole thing sounded ridiculous as he tried to apologize and tell her that he cares about her. I tried to mind my own business and not listen to the commotion but it was rather distracting since the bathroom was right next to the kitchen that I was standing in.

Finally, a friend of the couple had to intervene and walk the girl who was still on a rampage downstairs to get into a cab. The guy crawled out of the bathroom with his tail between his legs, looking as though he was going to burst into tears. He apologized endlessly as he showed us the huge bruise on his arm from where she had aggressively bitten him.

I couldn’t believe it! Not only had she dug her teeth into his flesh but she had also ripped off the toilet seat and lid from the toilet and spilled stuff everywhere. Was this fight based on anything reasonable? Absolutely not. Is behaviour like this ever acceptable? No way. Is this chick completely insecure? That, to me, is obvious.

It’s too bad that so many people get lost in their insecurities and as a result their own issues ruin things for other people and usually it’s loved ones who feel the pain. This fight was obviously an extreme situation but I have seen so many arguments that are based on something so silly and get blown way out of line because of someone’s insecurity. I guess we’re all going to be insecure in one way or another but it would be great if we could recognize our own insecurities and try to work on them so they don’t ruin many great things that life has to offer.