Tag Archives: dating in Paris

Ms. Man-shopper in Boozetown

Part of being an adult is having adult problems and solving them with adult solutions.  In other words, I am here to write about…

… alcohol.

I posit that alcohol is a key component to any man-shopping operation.

I cite the following reasons:

Doing away with inhibitions and sound decision-making is essential to coping with an interlocutor who is unattractive, boring, or generally repulsive in some way.  In the long run, it’s better to be civil, but sobriety makes this very difficult.

  • Sober Man-shopper : Bugger off before I rip your face off and use it as a cape.
  • Drunky Man-shopper : Oh heeeeeeeeey, fancy seeing you here.  How’s it going?  Having a good time?  You like my dress, aw shucks, oh how nice of you to say!

It’s nice to have something to do with your hands.  It’s the difference between descending into irredeemable dorkitude and actually passing for a normal human being who may even appear to have some semblance of man-shopping mojo.

  • Sober Man-shopper : < arms flailing about uncontrollably, sometimes hitting people in the face >
  • Drunky Man-shopper : < clutching glass, sipping demurely, and sometimes peeking over it and pretending to bat eyelashes >

Sometimes we would all like a way to pretend like something never happened.

  • Sober Man-shopper : Oh god.  That guy last night at McDonald’s.  He looked like a troll that was hit by a truck and then backed over by a cement roller.  He smelled like a petting zoo.  I’m not entirely sure he was even simian.  And HE TOUCHED MY ARM.  GET IT OFF GET IT OFF GET IT OFF.
  • Drunky Man-shopper : I don’t remember anything after paying for my chicken nuggets.

Man-shopping is a risky business, and we all know how easy it is to get burned.  And it’s disturbing how easy it is to not just get burned, but to get effing incinerated.  So if you’re anything like me, we don’t like to deal with our shit in a productive kind of way.  Alcohol to the rescue!

  • Sober Man-shopper : Sob. Sob. Sob.  Uncontrollable weeping.  I hate myself, and I would like to die now please.  My heart is exploding.  But I luuuuuuuurve him.  I am a fat cow, no wonder he discarded me like day-old bread.
  • Drunky Man-shopper : I am a goddess, and it’s his loss, dammit.  Leaping lobsters, I look phenomenal in this new lingerie, and he’s NEVER GONNA SEE IT.  Dance it out, girl.  Dance it out to Britney in your bedroom….  < static… >

Alcohol = courage.

  • Sober Man-shopper : < Silent and cowering in the corner of the room >
  • Drunky Man-shopper : Helloooo, sir, you are very handsome.  May I touch your biceps?

Sometimes competition over a coveted male can get a little heated.  Alcohol can sometimes save you heaps of money that would otherwise have been spent on legal representation after getting charged with assault.

  • Sober Man-shopper : That bitch just said WHAT?!  I WILL DESTROY HER.  HE IS MINE.
  • Drunky Man-shopper : Aw, she didn’t mean it.  She’s just jealous of my awesome shoes.  Who is this guy again?  Ooo, is that guacamole I see?  I LOVE PUPPIES!

Alcohol = mad skills.  We all need skills to have an edge over the competition, right?

  • Sober Man-shopper : I can’t dance to save my life.  I also can’t speak any language but English and a smattering of Pig Latin.
  • Drunky Man-shopper : I AM A BALLROOM CHAMPION.  I AM FLUENT IN CROATIAN AND FINNISH.  RAWR, BITCHES!

All that aside, however, as I try to pick my face up off the floor from yesterday’s hangover, perhaps you all should ignore everything that I have to say.

Happy man-shopping.  Don’t forget to hydrate.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *

This post has been brought to you by The Insomnia Club.  This edition was to take its inspiration from the image above.  Check out what my compatriots have to say on Natalie Dee’s little drawing!

Condoms: Who Likes ‘Em Anyway? – Skye Blue of Met Another Frog

Insomnia Club Strikes Again: Get Your Own Box – Nikki at Women Are From Mars

Sharing is Caring: The Insomnia Club Strikes Again – Simone at Sex, Lies and Dating in the City

We also had an additional topic this month…

Banana Pancakes & Pretend It’s The Weekend ~ Charlotte at My Pixie Blog


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Ms. Umbrella Warrior Princess

For those of you who haven’t heard, the eastern coast of the U.S. was recently bombarded by Hurricane Irene.  The reason I bring this up is because the torrential rains have forced us to break out our wellies and umbrellas.  From my experiences in Paris, I’ve found that the umbrella can be an essential man-shopping tool for avid man-shoppers of all levels.  Think of it this way: The umbrella is a fashion accessory AND a weapon.

When I say “umbrella”, I am not referring to those dinky foldable umbrellas that slide into a lady’s handbag.  I am referring to a proper brolly with a hooked wooden handle and a large enough wingspan to encompass both a lady and all her handbags underneath in order to protect them from the elements.  In my humble opinion, this is the only kind of umbrella worth owning.

Moving on, let’s discuss how an umbrella can enhance your man-shopping experience in Paris and elsewhere.

The umbrella as a fashion accessory

  • A lady can strike quite a debonair pose while leaning on a full-sized umbrella.  I’d like to think that a worthy man would be attracted to a lady in a trench who carries a striking cane-like accessory.
  • From a practical point of view, I find it much more difficult to lose or mislay an umbrella if I can hook it on my arm or lean upon it whilst in conversation with and perhaps getting distracted by potential suitors.
  • For those blustery rainy days, maintaining dignity is difficult if one is constantly wrestling with an uncooperative foldable umbrella that turns inside-out and breaks at the slightest gust.  Without one’s dignity intact, there’s no decent man-shopping to be done, I assure you.

The umbrella as a weapon

  • In Paris, the men can be (physically) aggressive ass-wipes.  In the states, you may get cat calls and appreciative under-the-breath comments, but in Paris, you will need to beat these idiots off with a stick — namely, your umbrella stick.  With a large umbrella, a lady can do some effective damage to an unwanted suitor, should she need to make her lack of interest clearer when he attempts to grab her in the street.
  • If a lady sees a worthy man-target in her midst, but her path across the room is blocked by passers-by and less desirable suitors, she can more easily part the crowd by rapping people in the shins with her handy cane-like umbrella.
  • If a lady needs to run away from unwanted attention on a rainy day and is faced with a narrow parisian sidewalk filled with clueless people, she can easily hog the sidewalk to make a quick getaway, as other pedestrians with less hearty umbrellas would easily be intimidated and back away from the superior rain accessory in order to avoid injury.

In conclusion…

I highly recommend big umbrellas to supplement your daily man-shopping operations.

They.

Are.

AWESOME.

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Ms. Nostalgia

It’s taken a while to settle into my non-expatriate life, and blogging hasn’t been on my list of priorities lately. And, quite frankly, I’ve had a hard time finding my blogging mojo.

Words seemed to flow pretty freely for me on the other side of the Atlantic, and now that I’m back in my own country, I guess I’m eager to start anew, and blogging seems to be something that my subconscious associates with my former life as a foreigner in France.

But for your sakes, dear readers, I am determined to overcome this subconscious block.

So to kickstart my new bloggerific life on this side of the Atlantic, I’ve decided to publish a list of all the things I miss about dating in France — all those elusive, intangible things that I took for granted while I was there.

Ready?

Things I miss about dating in France:

……

………

………… Nothing.

You know that saying, “The grass is always greener on the other side”?

That’s a load of crap.

The grass is greener on THIS side, folks.

Let’s face it. If you’ve been long-time followers of Man-shopping in Paris, you must be convinced as I that there is nowhere to go but onward and upward from there.

Stay tuned. As soon as I get around to changing the above header to “Man-shopping in DC”, mayhem à la man-shoppeuse will continue to grace your internets.

Make no mistake, I am still as bat-crap mad as ever.

But trust me, I’m also still as delightful as ever, and I am ready to rumble.

The poor american lads will have no idea what’s in store for them.

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Ms. Honeybabylovelylumps

Pet names can sometimes be a touchy topic, as the value, efficacy and general feelgoodiness of any pet name is purely subjective and based entirely on the arbitrary criteria of the individual being pet-named.

In general, whether or not I enjoy being called a pet name in French is determined entirely by whether I find the pet-namer horribly sleazy or gloriously attractive.

Given my history with the parisian male population, which is a separate species that I like to call parisianus asstardanus, it should come as no surprise that there are precious few French pet names that I find particularly appealing.

French pet names I like

  • ma belle
  • mon coeur (I’ve never been much of a romantic, but I have to say that “my heart” really has a certain ring to it.)
  • princesse (This is not to be confused with the possessive “MA princesse”, as I don’t intend to be anyone’s princess for as long as I can help it.  It implies a certain sappy dependency that I find cringeworthy.)
  • cherie (Harmless.  But again, not to be confused with the possessive “ma cherie”, which I have decided that I dislike for no good reason)=

French pet names I don’t like

  • mon amour (A man needs to EARN the right to call me this.)
  • mon ange (Ugh.  Hate it hate it hate it.  Someone who calls me his angel must surely be cheating on me.)
  • ma biche/bichette (Firstly, I’m no doe.  Secondly, it sounds too much like “bitch”.)
  • ma puce (Who wants to be called a flea??)
  • mon petit chou (Everyone knows that cabbage is evil.)

There are some contradictory overlaps between this french list and the following english list.  I know.  But I don’t care.  I told you that this was going to be arbitrary.

English pet names I like:

  • beautiful (It makes me feel beautiful.)
  • gorgeous (It makes me feel gorgeous.)
  • my lady/milady (It makes me feel like a genteel lady.)
  • sugar (Those of you who follow me on Twitter know that this one, said with a southern drawl, melts me on the spot.)
  • babe (I am indeed a total babe!)
  • my love (Nobody has ever actually called me this except some Irish women in a totally platonic way, but I don’t think that I’d mind of a man were to call me that.)
  • honeybunch (Come on, it makes me laugh!  I can’t help it)

English pet names I don’t like:

  • my beauty (That’s what you call your car.)
  • honey (Sticky. Icky.)
  • baby (Think about it.  It’s creepy!)
  • baby girl (Creepier.)
  • babycakes (Ew.)
  • woman (This is fun as a joke, but call me this seriously, and I will likely hurt you.)
  • slut (Do I even need to explain this one?)
  • dear/my dear (This sounds patronizing.  In a great-aunt kind of way.)

And thus I now (abruptly) conclude my random post about pet names because snack time absolutely cannot wait.

What about you all?  This topic is clearly subjective.  Feel free to discuss your feelings about pet names in the comments section below.  Bust my balls if you want.  I’m feeling feisty today!

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Ms. American Whore

France has always had a reputation for being somewhat more overt in the kind of sexuality that it allows to be portrayed in its advertising, media and entertainment.  One would think that this would lead to a more desensitized sex culture — a sexually open culture that is based on instant gratification.

I thought that too when I first arrived here in Paris years ago.

I couldn’t have been more wrong.

Well, actually, I suppose I could have been wronger, but that means that I’d have thought that Notre Dame Cathedral was made of pineapple.

Wouldn’t that be delightful?

Anyway, when it comes to sex, in general, I’ve found that people here are so repressed that the tension in the air is palpable.  Walk up to any parisian man, and you’ll find that he is strung so tightly that any woman with a pulse could pluck his strings with just a look.

Sure, he’ll walk by a perfume advertisement featuring a naked woman the size of a bus, and he’ll be unfazed.  But show him a bit of leg on a real, breathing woman, and he’ll likely walk into a lamppost or into oncoming traffic as his eyes follow her down the street.  (I’ve definitely seen this happen.)

Here’s my theory…  I think that this media-diffused sexual imagery has been embraced by women in some countries; they’ve emulated what they see in the media, so you see women wearing suggestive clothing fashions and being more open with the way the speak and express their views about sex and relationships.

But here, I think that women have gone the opposite direction.  They try to disassociate themselves with these highly sexualized women that they see in advertisements and in films.  Women here go out of their way to associate appropriate comportment with LESS openness, LESS skin, LESS provocativeness.  If there were to be a motto, it’d be “WITHHOLD, WITHHOLD, AND WITHHOLD”.  Obviously, slut-shaming is off the charts here.

French fashion is the antithesis of daring and individualist.  Cover up.  Hide your curves.  Conceal your cleavage.  Your bare legs do not see the light of day.  Do not smile at a man.  Do not speak about sex or anything provocative.  Because, above all, YOU MUST NOT BE PERCEIVED AS A WHORE.

All this withholding and repression on the frenchwoman’s part means that frenchmen follow their lead.  A woman wearing a suggestive outfit must be “the kind of woman” who will give it up at the least provocation and is not deserving of your respect.  A woman dressed in a black potato sack, she’s a proper lady — a quality lady — that you court properly and take home to mum.

And while I don’t think that I dress particularly provocatively, I like to feel pretty and to wear clothes that flatter my figure — whether it’s a simple black dress or a bright red blouse.  In my book, it’s a matter of self-respect.  Yet I suspect that this is why I get harassed in the street but why I’m otherwise ignored by the general date-able populace.  And I suspect that this is why frenchwomen often treat me with a certain amount of disdain or otherwise just categorically dismiss me.  Both men and women here seem to be working with the same paradigms.

The men seem to get their instant gratification not from their own wives and girlfriends, who are withholding and therefore sacred, but instead from other, “easy” women, easier targets — the ones that look like what they see in the media… the ones whose legs they ogle in the cafes, the ones whose hips that they see swaying in the streets, and the ones in plunging necklines that they pick up in bars.

I’ve been told that American women dress like whores.  American women are easy.  American women aren’t classy; they are crass because they say whatever they damn well please, when they damn well please.

Compared to the alternative, I think that I’d rather be a crass American whore than what passes for the feminine ideal here.

I like to smile and laugh and wear a skirt that makes my butt look great.

So sue me.

But that doesn’t necessarily mean that I’m an egg cooked over-easy, thank you.  I’m still a classy lady who deserves some respect and decency, which is not something that I’m accustomed to getting on a daily basis.

The kind of imagery that may result in an over-sexed culture that promotes instant gratification… it can also have the opposite effect on cultural norms.  There are two sides to that coin, and here in France, I’m looking at one side of it.

It makes me miss what’s on the other side.

I wonder if the Washington Monument is made of pineapple.

* Today’s topic was brought to you by the Insomnia Club!  See what the other cook cats have to say about sexual tension in the age of instant gratification and sexual imagery bombardment…

AV Flox

The Book of Love Was Written By A Sadist

Confronting Love

Feisty Woman

F*cking in Brooklyn

How Very Lucky To Be A Girl

Jess Downey — Not What I Ordered

KB in NYC

Single Much

Simone Grant

Thank You For Your Sex

Met Another Frog

Miss Taylor Cast

My Pixie Blog

Totally Tyler

The Urban Dater

Women Are From Mars

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Ms. Boyfriend Trainer

Julie over at French Toast sent me this link a while back, and I thought that it accurately/ironically illustrates the Parisian idea of a functional relationship.  The link takes you to an online game called The Boyfriend Trainer, in which the player, presumably a female, is supposed to train her boyfriend to be the perfect companion by implementing a negative reinforcement scheme — punishing him for undesirable behaviors.

The game is divided into four different stages:

  • Player must slap boyfriend if he even so much as glances amorously at another female.
  • Player must taser boyfriend if he leaves clutter on the floor of the house.
  • Player must whack boyfriend with racket if he hogs the remote or drinks wine instead of juice.
  • Player must strangle boyfriend with a pre-tied noose/leash if he drives too fast or attempts to change the radio station.

And voilà… the perfect boyfriend.

And voilà… the ultimate parisian relationship.

Minus the taser.  I don’t think that civilians can legally buy those here.

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Ms. Fading Failure

Oh boy.  “The Fade.”

The infamous Fade has been a staple of human dating rituals since… gosh, it doesn’t really matter.  You know what I’m talking about.  Boy meets girl.  Boy goes on date(s) with girl.  Boy realizes that he is not into girl.  Boy doesn’t call girl.  Girl may attempt contact with boy.  Boy ignores and fades into nothing.  Girl eats caramels and moves on.  The end.

I’ve been faded many a time in my life.  I’ve even done some fading myself.  The Fade is an established social convention indicating at least one party’s lack of interest in the other.

However, I’m not sure that all Parisian men are as familiar with the Fade as we are in the anglophone dating world.

I have attempted, on multiple occasions, to fade my way out of undesirable entanglements here.  According to past experiences on American soil, this should have gone off without a hitch.

But, of course, upon arrival in Paris, hitches abounded, and the most illustrative example is someone to whom I refer as Mr. Gym Stalker.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Mr. Gym Stalker worked the front desk at my gym.  While I didn’t pay much attention to the front desk staff at the time, my gym buddy, the Irish Parisienne, pointed out to me that Mr. Gym Stalker had developed a little crush on me.

I laughed it off and just continued along my merry little way.

But one day, as I was on my way out, he summoned me over and told me that he needed to ask me about something.

Mr. G.S. : “I noticed that you don’t come here as often as you used to.”

Man-shopper : “Yeah, I moved.  I only work out here if I’m in the neighborhood.  I go to a different location now.”

Mr. G.S. : “Here’s the thing.  I’ve been working here for two years now, and I can’t work out here anymore because people recognize me while I’m working out, assume that I’m on duty, and bother me.”

Man-shopper : “Uhhh, okay….”

Mr. G.S. : “It’s really difficult for me to motivate myself to work out at other locations, so I was wondering if you’d like to work out sometime at the location that you go to now.  Planning to meet up with people motivates me more than if I were to just go by myself.”

Man-shopper : “Oh, ok, gym buddies are cool.  Well, I go to spin class, you’re welcome to join me.”

And I thought that’d be it.  I didn’t think that it would be a big deal, since I didn’t intend on returning to this gym location anymore.  My move was finally official, and it was no longer convenient for me to trek out there.  So, in my mind, this wasn’t a date, and I didn’t give him my number.  This was just a… a nothing.

But then the phone calls started.

I had that gym’s phone number programmed into my phone, and I noticed that the gym would be calling me everyday, but nobody ever left a message.  I didn’t bother call back, as I figured that if the gym had official business with me, they’d leave a message.

After a few weeks of this, I began to get lots of calls from a mobile number that I didn’t recognize, and sometimes from a masked phone number.  Again, I don’t answer or return calls unless I know the number or if I’m expecting a call.  These calls were really starting to concern me, as they would occur at least several times per day, sometimes as late as 11 at night.

I decided to approach this matter as if the caller were an undesirable and clueless suitor.  I figured, the Fade should work eventually, right?  I’ll just sit tight and be unresponsive until he gets the point and goes away.

A couple of months later of these persistent phone calls, I began to think that my phone was possessed.  Who the hell would keep calling me like this without leaving a message??

I lived in fear of my phone.

I turned off its ringer.

One fateful day — my birthday, actually — I get a text message from the mystery mobile number.

“Hi, I just wanted to wish you a happy 27th birthday.  All the best, Mr. G.C.”

So let’s recap the horribleness of this situation:

Mr. G.C. pulled my mobile number from the gym’s client files and proceeded to harass me for months without leaving a voicemail.

Mr. G.C. then pulled MY BIRTHDAY from my file and used the number acquired by inappropriate channels in order to harass me further.

My Fade failed miserably.

It had nothing to do with my technique.  It is physically impossible to botch a Fade.  Non-response is the easiest cop-out thing to do in the world.

But some creeptastic, stalkerish, dodgy Parisian men simply refuse to be Faded.

However, this is not to say that the Fade doesn’t have its uses on the Parisian scene.  Even if the Fade fails miserably as a suitor-ditching technique, it is, however, a great way to determine whether one needs to consider taking out a restraining order.

Don’t Say Hello by Simone Grant
Fade To Black by The Urban Dater
The Fade by Miss Melisa Mae
You Say Fade? I Say Cop-Out by Women Are From Mars
To Fade or Not to Fade by Jess Downey
Eyes Open By Totally Tyler
Fading Into the Shadows by Miss Taylor Cast
50 Ways to Leave Your Lover by F*cking in Brooklyn
Da Fade, Ladies and Gentlemen, by Thank You For Your Sex™

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Mr. Normal

Bueller?…  Bueller?… Bueller?

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Ms. Self-Help Junkie

What do the French all do in August?  They go on holiday.

This is perfect for me actually.  I can feel less guilty about taking a holiday from dating Frenchmen.  I can tell myself that there aren’t any in Paris for me to date.

I am obviously full of shit, of course.  The truth of it is, I’m just burnt out.  So many first dates, so many idiot Parisian pansies, I’m just fed up.

But the numbers don’t lie, people.  There must be something wrong here.  It’s obviously not me, since I am clearly a shitfuckton of awesome.  So it must be a cultural thing, right?  Therefore, my new project for the coming months is to get to the bottom of this.

For the time being, I will no longer be reporting from the dating trenches.  I am confining myself to a desk for now.  I will be hitting the books, conducting written research and reporting back to you all about my findings.  I need to formulate new, better-informed strategies before relaunching Operation Date A Frenchman.

I must answer the following question: how do Parisians date?

My theory is that they just don’t.

Therein lies the problem.

As an American, I cherish structure and ritual.  First date.  Second date.  Third date.  General courtship.  Pragmatism.  EFFICIENCY.

…None of which seem to have any presence in Parisian dating culture.

In other words, as an American dating in Paris, I am essentially up shit creek without a paddle.  So as any desperate determined single lady would do in America, I get my ass into a bookstore and scour the self-help section.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Now, I remember what the self-help section of Borders in the USA looks like.  It’s enormous.  It’s a shrine to the American work ethic and our desire to better ourselves, even if it fucking kills us.  It is a kind of testament to our obsession with pulling ourselves up by our bootstraps.  It is, in a word, daunting.

However, here, I found myself staring at a small corner of the store next to the emergency exit.  And the light bulb was out.

And you know how there seem to be a plethora of books on dating and relationships in America?  Books on everything… first date etiquette, flirting, ‘The Game’, how to find your sugar-daddy, ‘The Rules’, etc.

Well, here I had to crane my neck to see the selection of a couple dozen titles on the top shelf.

That’s right, folks.

ONE SHELF.

And this is where it truly gets interesting…

The dating books can be divided into only two categories:

  1. books about how to find your dream mate
  2. books about how to prevent the relationship/marriage from utterly falling to bits.

There are NO titles that advertise advice about dating etiquette, about flirting, about online dating, texting, sexting, or anything specific about the nuts and bolts of dating as we Americans perceive it.  I’m looking at titles like:

  • What Men Really Think: Know Them and Land Them
  • How to Find the Man of Your Dreams
  • Where to Look for the Man of Your Dreams
  • Your Husband, He’s Out There!
  • How To Find Love
  • What You Need to Do to Attract your Ideal Man
  • Women Are Crazy
  • Divorce: How to Avoid It
  • Easy Ways To Maintain Your Relationship

This is what these titles seem to be saying to me:

  1. Hey, you single women, there is something seriously wrong with you.  Get a man already.  We’re gonna tell you how not to be a pathetic, sad sop.
  2. Men, it’s not that hard to land a women; they’re all desperate to have a boyfriend ASAP.  But relationships are hard, so here’s how you put up with her.

Awesome.

I thought to myself, how am I going learn to date à la française??  These books tell me how to get that first date but then skip immediately to how to deal with the relationship you got yourself into after that first date.  What the hell do they do in between?

I’ve never felt more… American.

But I said to myself, “Suck it up, Man-shopper.  You have a blog project.  And you’re a researcher, dammit.  Put those skills to good use.  And you know what they say… When in Rome…”

So I chose the book that seemed to offer the most comprehensive information about the dating process.  It is entitled, “How to Find the Man of Your Dreams.”  (Shut up.)

I admit that I was a little ashamed of being seen with this book, so I tried to be surreptitious about slipping off the top shelf.  But as I am petite and was off balance on my tippytoes, this embarrassing little book fell off the shelf and landed on my face.

This was not an auspicious start to my cultural education.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

I slid the book under my arm and scurried to the till.  I was greeted by a disgruntled-looking woman in her fifties.  She glanced at my neon pink book (yes, of course, it had to be neon pink), and she raised her eyebrows.

Disgruntled FNAC employee: “Oh, I have this book too!”

Man-shopper: “Really?  What did you think?  Will it help me find a man?”

Disgruntled FNAC employee: “You’re buying it for YOURSELF?”  She looked me up and down.  “You’re pretty.  Shouldn’t you already have a boyfriend?  Is there something wrong with you?”

Man-shopper: “Euhhh…”

Disgruntled FNAC employee: “Did you used to be fat?  Did you have a gastric bypass?  You look great!  Don’t worry, you’ll find a man now.”

Dear readers, this man-shopper has officially fallen down the Parisian rabbit hole.

God help me.

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Mr. Denial

Since my last post from Boston, I’ve relocated to Ithaca, NY for my sister’s graduation.  While I am thrilled to be here for her commencement activities, all this family stuff has temporarily put a stop to my man-shopping until I leave for New York City tomorrow morning.  So until my NYC adventures begin, I’ll try to amuse you with more ramblings about the Parisian scene.

According to my personal field research, many anglophone women — particularly American women — will have trouble communicating certain things to their Parisian suitors.  This kind of miscommunication primarily revolves around the idea that anglophone women spend most of their waking hours turning down Parisian creeps, and said Parisian creeps spend most of their time in denial of this fact.

The best way to illustrate this particular anthropological phenomenon is with this handy chart that I’ve drawn up for you.

As you can see, dating in Paris can be fraught with misunderstandings.

A while back, I speculated that my lack of success on the Parisian dating scene could be due in part to an inherent language problem.  But after the epiphany that resulted in the above chart, I now also believe that liaisons between anglophones and francophones could potentially be doomed for reasons that have nothing to do with language.

Simply put, Houston, we have a cultural problem.

For whatever reason, dating rituals here require the men to act like ass-hats and, unfortunately, the women seem to put up with them or egg them on.

I haven’t been able to figure out how to beat the system, so to speak, but I’ve a number of friends who have offered their advice on the matter.  My buddy, Martin, who has long been baffled and concerned by the absurdity that is my love life in Paris, only had four words for me:

“Stop dating French guys.”

However, even though I agree with him in principle, in practice, I’m not going to stop dating Frenchmen.

It’s not that I’m determined to have a relationship with a Frenchman.

It’s just that I’m having so much fun with this blog.

And come on, you know that you love reading about these Parisian ass-clowns* that I meet.

So when I return to Paris next month, it’s on to the next…

…French-tard!

*This great new addition to my vocabulary has come by way of my friend, Iroquois Pliskin.  He has quite a way with words, and he and his brother have introduced me to wonderfully useful terms like “skank-pronging” and “schmo-hawk.”  I tip my hat to their skilled wordsmithing.

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