My List (yeah, I said it)

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My List (yeah, I said it)

It seems to me that whenever a woman reveals that she has certain standards or expectations when it comes to dating, men immediately call her out for having a “list”. Sistagirl says she doesn’t date men who are happily living in their mama’s basement while she washes his socks and drawls, and then the peanut gallery says something stupid like “What about a man who treats you well? What about someone who loves you?”. Jody my Jody. Treating her well is a given. Let’s just assume that most sane, stable women are already excluding Ike Turner, for example. No one is running around saying “Girl, I’ll marry Ike as long as I don’t have to keep quiet so his mama don’t hear us!” So let’s assume that in non-hoodrat conversations about dating, we’re only discussing people who are decent human beings as possible partners. Ok? Good! Moving on….

While I agree that choosing a partner isn’t the type of thing that should be handled from a checklist, I don’t think there is anything wrong with knowing what you want. Self-awareness is half the battle. And in my experience, if you think my standards are too high, it’s only because you don’t personally meet them. That is where we all go wrong. Everyone ain’t for everybody. Everyone isn’t even supposed to be for everybody. As a matter of fact, the vast majority of people on earth would not be a good match for any given individual. If they were, the divorce rate would be much lower.

So while there are plenty of  “good men”, that does not make most of them automatically “good for me”. Good is relative. I think I’m a “good woman”, but there is no doubt plenty of people would disagree. And that’s ok. It’s natural.  Because it is highly unlikely I’d want to be with them either. If my definition of manhood includes having your very own pot to piss in, but yours doesn’t, we just ain’t meant to be. I hate you Jody! The same way I don’t get upset if a man says he doesn’t date women over 150lbs, you should not get upset that I don’t date men under 6 feet 5’10. Your penis is entitled to it’s opinions, and I am entitled to mine.

Whether you think my attraction to taller men is silly, or arbitrary, or that you can make up those inches in other places, is completely irrelevant to me and my attraction. Attraction is subjective as hell. Nothing you say or do is gonna stop the fact that my coochie gets dry the moment I realize I am looking down upon your hairline. I am about 5’8, but I do have heels that put me at 6 feet tall. So, what is we gon do short man? Not the nasty, I’ll tell you that. I don’t care if you got a baby arm in your pants. I can’t deal with those baby ass legs homey. I just can’t.

Relationships are give and take. None of us are perfect. Shocking as it may seem, I’m not even perfect. So, we all have to come to terms that if we want 50 things, we will never find it. But the key is to narrow it down the few things that are most important to you.

Case in point: I’m a professor. So naturally, education probably weighs a little heavier on me than the next woman. So let’s say I put on my list that I require all men I date to have a master’s degree (which I don’t). Is that truly arbitrary? Or does it reflect a value that is actually important to me, as evidenced by the fact that I have dedicated my life to higher education? If I am spending my days and nights trying to provide the best education I can to absolute strangers because it is what I love, how will I feel when I come home and my partner is completely uninterested in the process? Or doesn’t think it’s important? Likewise, how will he feel when I go on and on and on about how important *I* think it is?

Of course, we’re all individuals and no two people (degreed or not) are going to have the same attitude, but my point is if something is that important to your self-worth or happiness, the partner you choose better be able to appreciate it as well. Personally, I would rather a man be able to match me on intellect than match my degrees, but I can totally understand the sista who feels like she needs the official stamp that a degree provides. That’s her perogative. A differing opinion does not make either of you wrong. It just makes you wrong for each other. And that’s nothing to be mad about. Accept it, and find someone who actually appreciates you. We all have something unique to offer. If the person in front of you doesn’t recognize your fabulosity, someone else will.

With that being said, here are my absolutes:

  1. Complimentary sense of humor. If we don’t have laughter, we don’t have shit. I dated someone who was FINE. Like Detective Troy “I think I need to pray”  fine. Just ridiculous fine. But, at the end of the day, he just was entirely too serious. My life is serious enough on it’s own, so it’s important for me to be with someone who keeps me laughing. And since we are going to be laughing I also need you to have good teeth. (see how I slid that in there?)
  2. Height (as we’ve already discussed). Look, I’m sorry. I wish I could give a lil homey a chance. I really do. I know some really nice short people. My mama short. My brother short. I got black short friends. I mean, T.I. is fine with his little self. And Larenz Tate was my baby boo all through the 90’s. But, nawl. We can’t be seen together. I feel like I’m your babysitter.
  3. Accomplishment-orientation. Not goal-orientation. Because a lot of us make goals and then never make progress. I’m about that PROGRESSIVE life. I be hustling. Moving. Shaking. Shimmying. Getting things done. I say things, and then I do them. Expeditiously. #JoeClark. No hemming or hawwing. I have a career, a business, and an art that I put effort into regularly. So what I cannot STAND more than anything else is a man who does more talking than doing. Oh, those people frustrate the life out of me. Give me high blood pressure. If I haven’t seen you in 3 years, and when I see you, your life is still the same as it was 3 years ago?!?! Chile, I can’t do it. What is your life about?!?! Where is your plan?!?! We all know someone who has been “planning” to start a business, to go back to school, to move out their mama’s basement, to drop that album, or *insert lie that sounds good here*. And yes, I understand things happen. People get layed off, sick, etc. But I need to be with someone making consistent progress. Because one thing I have learned is that a person who is content where they are will resent a person who is not content. And vice-versa. That is absolute truth. I have a personality which will probably never allow me to actually be content. I can be happy where I am, but I will always be planning for the next step. It will be a loooong time before I can sit back and look at my life and say “done”. And that personality makes me a frustrating person to be with for a lot of people. But it’s also sexy as hell to some other people. I like those people. They’re my kind!

I’m quite the catch over here. So that really too much to ask?

By | 2012-07-11T15:58:39+00:00 July 26th, 2011|Relationships, Self Reflection|3 Comments