Honest Review: My Ex-Boyfriend

IMG_0693I don’t really do product reviews on this blog, but it seems like everybody else does, which makes me feel like I’m missing out.  So I’m starting a new feature:  LBG’s Honest Reviews.  I promise that, whatever I’m reviewing, I will give you my completely unbiased opinion, no matter how many people try to stop me.  I will also make sure I thoroughly try out what I’m reviewing, so I can tell you all about it and you’ll be able to trust my conclusions, or at least understand them.  With that in mind, I thought I would make my first review about something I’ve examined from every angle, something I’ve used multiple times and in multiple ways, something I can truly say I gave my all:  my ex-boyfriend.

I realize that there are tons of different ex-boyfriend models out there, with newer ones coming on the market every year, and not every model will have the same features mine has.  For instance, not everyone will want the cries-when-drunk version, or the optional incipient beer gut, and of course the POS-car attachment can get pretty expensive.  But for those who are tired of constantly upgrading and are ready to make a commitment, here is my honest review of my ex-boyfriend.

Pros:

My ex-boyfriend comes with attractive packaging and initially presents as very appealing.  He has an excellent marketing campaign aimed at the slightly-inebriated thirty-something female:  his introductory approach emphasizes his southern charm, complete with cowboy boots, accent, and pulling the chair out for his date (which I have to admit was completely adorable) and obscures his less appealing qualities with copious amounts of alcohol.  It’s certainly an approach that’s been taken before, but the polish and professionalism that come with experience set my ex-boyfriend apart from the frat boy crowd.

IMG_0696Once you have my ex-boyfriend back in your home and you’ve taken off the wrapper, you’ll find that he comes with several notable upgrades from the standard model.  The one that’s proven the most popular is that he comes with his own guitar, which he can actually play quite well.  Upon further exploration, his repertoire is mainly limited to country music and mullet rock, but his acoustic version of Warrant’s classic “Cherry Pie” will surprise you with its wistful acknowledgment of the fragility of innocence.  Other pre-programmed features include:  the ability to perform eerily good imitations of all the main cast members of Game of Thrones; an extensive familiarity with every film in the Saw franchise; and, for some reason, clogging.

My ex-boyfriend also comes with a self-cleaning feature that is among the most elaborate currently on the market:  he will spend hours in the bathroom with a hand mirror, three different kinds of razors and special beard scissors trying to achieve the perfect beard-to-mustache ratio.  He will then spend three minutes cutting his hair.  He does require a special cleaning formula to keep his designer vintage-look jeans in pristine condition, but while the purchase and storage of a specialty cleaning product can be a nuisance, the actual cleaning requires no effort on your part as he does not trust anyone else to wash his denim, performing the entire task himself by hand.  Note to potential consumers:  please be ready to sacrifice all other use of your clothes drying rack for up to two days at a time, as my ex-boyfriend will begin to glitch if you suggest anything like, I don’t know, using the dryer.

Cons:

Those of you with slow internet connections may want to consider a different model,  as my ex-boyfriend takes up an astonishing amount of bandwidth while interfacing with such programs as Fortnite, Overwatch, and something involving Tom Clancy, who I honestly didn’t even realize did anything other than books.  While my ex-boyfriend is engaged with these programs, you will be unable to do anything requiring an internet connection, the ability to concentrate without someone shouting “SUCK IT!!!” every few minutes, or crossing the living room.  I recommend using the time during his pre-gaming ritual to download the kind of movie he refuses to watch with you (for instance:  anything starring Melissa McCarthy) and then retiring to the kitchen with your laptop and a pair of headphones.

IMG_0694Other things to consider when my ex-boyfriend sits down next to you in a bar include:  he often makes an extremely unpleasant buzzing sound while recharging at night.  It seems to come from his nasal area and resembles a kind of erratic, intermittent jack hammering, or possibly an exceptionally winded Darth Vader.  It can be temporarily alleviated with a flailing slap on his upper arm, but it will almost inevitably start up again within ten minutes.  There does not appear to be an update or patch in the works to remedy this minor but disproportionately annoying design flaw, probably because he will never actually admit it happens (he will also never admit that komodo dragons are real, no matter how many pictures, Wikipedia entries, or actual komodo dragons you show him, but he believes every word of The Da Vinci Code.  Make of that what you will).

In addition, although initially providing a very satisfying user experience, his performance quality degraded rapidly after a few months.  He would often fail to perform tasks he deemed “stupid” until the third or fourth request, and he developed a tendency to wipe his memory after he put something down, rendering him incapable of picking it back up and putting it away again.  It’s also worth noting that his attractive packaging conceals some frankly below-average hardware and that certain basic boyfriend functions become unavailable after the consumption of alcohol.  Also, it turns out he was sexting his ex-girlfriend the entire time we were together, so f*ck him.

Conclusions:

Overall, I’m afraid I can’t recommend my ex-boyfriend.  While his design is stylistically and aesthetically pleasing, his performance is unsatisfactory and his habit of going into sleep mode at unscheduled intervals can be extremely inconvenient.  His failure to deliver on his initial promises cannot be offset by claims of future upgrades involving “hitting the gym extra hard” and “just focusing on my baby girl and making sure she’s happy.”  In such a crowded market, we can and should demand more.  Especially if he’s still sexting his ex-girlfriend.  F*ck him.  Actually, you know what?  Don’t.

[Disclaimer:  I did not receive any payment or other compensation for this review, and while I did technically receive my ex-boyfriend for free, overall he ended up costing me quite a bit of money, especially since he never paid me back for that wedding present we were supposed to go halfsies on and that was for his friends who I barely knew anyway.  There really ought to be a “My ex stiffed me on a joint wedding present” deduction for tax returns.]

 

[All images are in the public domain courtesy of pixabay.com:  Image 1, Image 2, Image 3.]

Things Cats Can Do That My Ex-Boyfriend Never Managed

1.  Knock

2.  Wash

3.  Leave me the hell alone when I’m in a mood

scaredy cat

4.  Cover their poo (cat equivalent of flushing the toilet)

5.  Get their own food

Cat on birdhouse

6.  Just tell me when they’re pissed off

7.  Make themselves useful around the house

cat eating bug

8.  Chase their own tails…no, I tell a lie, he managed that one

9.  Make me love them!

Most adorable cat

 

Close Encounters of the Chain-Bookstore Kind

BookstoreMy friends and I were in a bookstore once–one of those big national-chain-type bookstores where you need to use your GPS to find your way around.  Actually, this was long enough ago that you had to leave a booktrail to follow back–you know, where you take a book you like and leave it facing cover-out so that you can follow the books like a breadcrumb trail back to the front door, The Sound and the Fury to American Gods to The Maltese Falcon and so on…if you’re with friends you know well enough, you can also use this method to find each other in the store.  Anyway, one of my friends was being hit on by this totally obnoxious guy who was being a condescending jerk to her just because he was very good looking, which would have been less offensive if he hadn’t been spouting really bad existentialist philosophy at the time.

Disclaimer:  I have nothing against existentialist philosophy, as long as it’s done well, preferably in a French accent while smoking a cigarette.  Sadly, this was both crappy and in a Middle America kind of accent.  Not that I have anything against Middle America, it’s just not known for its existentialist philosophy.  Crap.  This is bound to offend someone.  Don’t hate me.

So my friends and I stood watching this for a while, because it wasn’t a big town and that counted as entertainment, when suddenly I’d had enough.  I mean, there’s only so much douchiness you take, especially when it’s being dished out to your friends.  So I ran around a display, rushed breathlessly up to my friend, and said, “Oh my God!  It’s really you!  I can’t believe it!  No one’s going to believe me when I tell them about this!  Can I have your autograph?!”  And my friend graciously signed her name as Douchebag Hairdo gawped moronically on the sidelines.  Friends:  50 million.  Douchebag Hairdo:  0.

Friends are awesome.  Can I just say?  Also:  everyone deserves to have that happen to them at least once in their lives.  Except maybe for Douchebag Hairdos.

Friends don’t let friends drive moving vans

Two friends

Two friends (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This is the story of how a friendship was born:

We all have different ways of dealing with stress.  Some people drink, some people turn to religion, some people become extreme couponers.  Me, I swear profusely and laugh at completely inappropriate things.  Until recently, I had my own office at work, so it wasn’t a big deal.  Then we made a new hire, and she got put in with me.  I was a little worried about this.  I’m not exactly–what’s that term?–safe for work.  Why would The Powers That Be hire a young and impressionable girl and then deliberately put her in an office with me?  I’m still not sure.  But they did.

I was good for about twenty minutes before I dropped my first expletive.  For me, that’s extremely impressive.  I’ve been known to utter sentences that contained more obscenities than non-obscenities.  I’ve crafted phrases that have used profanity as subject, verb, and object.  For a second, I was really afraid I was going to get a formal complaint.  I apologized for my impropriety.  My new officemate looked at me and said, “What?  Oh, I didn’t even notice.”

Huge f*&%ing sigh of relief!

Since then, I have learned her preferences in candy, lunch destinations, and breakfast muffins, and she has learned the true extent of my shameful addiction to caffeine as well as the depths to which I am willing to sink for the sake of making a joke.  I probably still should have been trying to behave myself around her so she wouldn’t run screaming from the office and file a complaint about the vile cretins surrounding her.  However, when you see each other at 7 AM and spend hours together going through paperwork to get a report in by the deadline, barriers tend to go down.  I was a little disturbed by the fact that she prefers Ryan Gosling to Johnny Depp, but she’s about five minutes old, so I let it pass.  JD can be too much for some people.  It’s okay.

Duct-tape Moving Van

Duct-tape Moving Van (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Officemate–she’s really more of an Office Sister at this point–moved house this past weekend, which is why I haven’t updated for a while:  I helped.  Well, I tried to help.  I’m not what you might call muscular, so I’m no good with moving furniture.  But I can pack like a champ, so that’s mostly what I did.  I packed and vacuumed.  I stayed at Office Sister’s place overnight so I could get up at dawn and pack some more.  Leading up to it, I thought, “Cool!  We’ll hang out, pack some boxes, drink some wine, make inappropriate comments when our supervisors can’t overhear–it’ll be great!”

I’m going to change my name from Little Blind Girl to Little Stupid Girl.  I know better than to think things like that.  Disaster 1:  The refrigerator Office Sister and Office Brother-in-Law ordered didn’t fit the space they had so carefully measured.  Disaster 2:  The microwave didn’t fit, either.  The freaking microwave!  Disaster 3:  Saturday evening traffic in a major metropolis.  Disaster 4:  Half a dozen people who had promised to help canceled.  Disaster 5:  God finally decided to smite us with torrential rain and intermittent tornados.  I’m not saying we didn’t deserve it, but seriously, who gets tornados when they’re moving?  And on, and on, and on.

Exhaustion, tears, the occasional natural disaster:  this is how a friendship is born.  No amount of stress at work can bind two people together quite like driving through tornados and packing away your Office Sister’s bras.  By the time the moving truck had been emptied at the new house and all the furniture had been set up, there was just no point in pretending to be refined and proper.  You can’t move house without swearing and, what’s more important, you can’t move house without revealing who you really are.  Sometimes literally, if you interrupt someone just after a shower because you’re looking for somewhere to brush your teeth and everything’s already packed up.  You just can’t help seeing each other in all your glory.

And it was pretty cool.

English: Clayton Farmhouse Drive Linking the f...

English: Clayton Farmhouse Drive (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

So my Office Sister is all moved into her new home, her first actual house, and she’s the cutest thing on two legs with her funny, patient husband and her loudmouth cat (shrieked the entire way to the new house.  Hour and a half.  Oh, my God!) and I don’t even remember how many boxes of couscous we ended up unpacking.  And three different kinds of salsa.  And at least twenty pillows.  And that’s it; we’re friends.  Done.  End of story, professionalism be d%&*ed.  You can’t lay hands on someone’s lingerie and then look them in the eye without laughing.

And that’s the story of how a friendship was born.

How to tell who’s winning the dating game

As many of my regular readers know, I’ve been out on a fair few dates.  Regular readers will also know that I have an unusual approach to dating.  My motto is, make every date an adventure.  It’s hard to tell how a dating adventure is going, so while getting bored waiting for various dates to pick me up, or in the back of my head while making small talk, I came up with a points system to keep track of how things are going.  In the spirit of pooling resources, I thought I would share this system with you and ask for your suggestions.  I’ve broken this down into relationship phases, for ease of perusal:

Asking someone out

  • While sober:  +10 points
  • While drunk:  -15 points
  • Face to face:  +15 points
  • Over the phone:  +5 points
  • Via text message:  0 points
  • On five minutes notice:  -15 points
  • Through poetry:  +25 points, even if it’s bad

Getting to first date location

  • Person who did the asking picks up:  +10 points
  • Person who was asked picks up:  -5 points, unless good reason
  • Meet at location:  0 points
  • Bringing flowers:  +10 points
  • Bringing flowers with vase:  +20 points
  • Overly romantic setting requiring heels:  0 points
  • Casual setting allowing flats:  +5 points
  • Unusual setting (awesome):  +25 points
  • Unusual setting (creepy):  -15 points

First Date

  • Telling date he/she looks nice:  +10 points
  • Not commenting on how late the other person was:  +5 points
  • Not being late in the first place:  +15 points
  • Ordering for the other person:  -20 points (I hate this!)
  • Asking the other person how his/her day was:  0 points
  • Asking the other person how his/her day was and actually listening:  +15 points
  • Discussing politics:  -5 points
  • Discussing religion:  -15 points
  • Discussing ex:  -30 points
  • Getting so engrossed in other person that you don’t notice the restaurant is closing:  +30 points
  • Tipping badly:  -20 points
  • Walking date safely to car/door:  +15 points

Post-date communication

  • Follow-up phone call/email/text within 1 day:  +10 points
  • Within two days:  +5 points
  • Within three days:  0 points
  • No contact until a week has gone by:  -10 points
  • More than five calls/emails/texts within 24 hours:  -5 points
  • Sending inappropriate pictures with suggestive captions after first date:  -50 points
  • Suggesting second date:  +15 points
  • Suggesting second date, then going incommunicado for three days:  -15 points
  • Using words “buddy”, “pal” or “friend” in post-date communication:  just give up

This doesn’t include second date activity or anything after, since a) this isn’t that kind of blog, and b) I rarely get to that stage.  Those of you who want to use this system should remember, as always, that no matter what the numerical result is, you have to take into account that certain inexplicable something that can’t be quantified.  I call it the Johnny Depp factor.  Feel free to rename it however suits you!

So what do you think?  Additions?  Corrections?  Suggestions?  Recriminations?  Does anyone want to do a follow-up for second dates and beyond?

With this LBG, I thee wed

Engagement Ring

Engagement Ring (Photo credit: Lucas_James)

A friend of mine is getting married.  Yay!  And you know her, if you read the blog closely, but I’m not allowed to announce it formally yet.  Cue the crying, hugging, dancing around, promising we’ll always be friends even after she’s got a live-in boy, etc.  Then comes the important discussion:

Me:  What are you thinking as far as the ceremony?

Friend:  I’m kind of torn.  Courthouse is very tempting, but my family would be really hurt if they couldn’t participate in a traditional wedding.

Me:  Courthouse all the way, baby.  Wham, bam, thank you, your honor!

Friend:  But the wedding dress!

Me:  That you wear once!

Friend:  And the reception!

Me:  That lasts for one evening and costs more than your honeymoon!

Friend:  And the presents!

Me:  Oh, yeah, the presents are pretty sweet.

Friend:  But if I had a wedding, I’d have to get my makeup done.

Me:  I can do your makeup!

Friend:  I’d have to wear heels.  I hate heels.

Me:  Ballet flats.

Friend:  I don’t have a preacher.

Me:  Internet Church of the Spaghetti God.

Friend:  Wait.  Which one of us wants a wedding?

Me:  I can’t help it.  I always have to have the last word.

Friend:  I can see it now:  “Do you, [friend’s name omitted] take this man to be your lawfully wedded husband?”  “I do.”  And do you, [Hot Fiance’s name omitted], take this woman to be your lawfully wedded wife?”  “I do.”  “And do you, Little Blind Girl, give your blessing to the union of this man and this woman?”  “I do.”  And only then will we be legally married!

Me:  Better believe it!

You think that’s bad, just wait until you read the yet-to-be-written post about the Little Blind Girl and the Open-Bar Reception!

Do first dates count as near-death experiences?

Lara Croft

Image via Wikipedia

Ok, since a decision has been made on my behalf that I should start dating again, which I really think I should have had a say in, but whatever, I want to lay down some ground rules.  Dating should be fun, it should be an adventure, it should not be a nerve-wracking, ego-wrecking form of torture akin to waterboarding.  Unless you’re into that.  Which I’m not.  So I’m setting up some ground rules to try to keep the process enjoyable:

1.  Getting Ready

For me, the date starts long before either you pick me up or we meet at whatever location.  I want to Get Ready.  Guys, I realize you don’t understand the process of Getting Ready, but it’s usually the best part of the date, so just let me have this one.  I like to spend a couple of hours in the bathroom cleansing, exfoliating, maybe putting on a nice calming mask, and then piling on about a pound of makeup and hair product so that I can look exactly like I usually do, but better.  I like to fake the I Eat Right And Take Care Of Myself look, because it’s never going to happen naturally.  I put on music, light candles, consult makeup books, ponder outfits…I’m a girl.  Let me do this and we’ll start out already having a great date.

2.  Too Much Information

I guess it’s good to have some warning, but I don’t really need to know about all your health issues on the first date.  Or the second.  I mean, if you’re dying of cancer, go ahead and tell me that.  That one’s important.  But if you’ve had a life-long battle with Irritable Bowel Syndrome, while that is certainly not any fun at all, I don’t necessarily need to hear about it at the restaurant, by candlelight, as we’ve just finished introducing ourselves.  That’s really more of a We’re In A Relationship Now kind of conversation, not a I Haven’t Yet Gotten Into Her Pants kind of conversation.  Think to yourself:  “If I were her and I had just told me this, would I be more or less likely to sleep with me?”  If the answer is more likely, go for it.  If it’s less, hold off until you cross the finish line.  Words to live by.

3.  Facebook Isn’t For First Dates

Please, please don’t friend request me right before or after our first date.  I want to be able to post about how I’m getting ready (see #1 above) or about how the date went and about how I rate you as a potential boyfriend.  I don’t want you to see that yet.  That’s the girl equivalent of peeing with the bathroom door open–which is another thing I don’t understand, but I’ll save that for a different post.  Also, things might not work out.  If you’re a jerk to me, I want to be able to post on Facebook about how awful you are and how glad I am we’re not together.  If you’re not a jerk to me and it still doesn’t work out, I don’t want to stare at your picture when it randomly pops up on my screen and start sobbing because you’ve ripped my little blind heart to pieces.  Then there’s the awkward phase where I know things aren’t working out but you don’t yet, or vice versa, and that just makes for a crap ton of awkward.  Just wait until we both know we’re on to something.

Ah, dating.  When else can a girl dress like a hooker and demand to be treated like a lady?  This should be fun!  It should be an action movie, a thriller, with chase sequences and fight scenes and maybe some explosions.  I’ve noticed there aren’t many of these things in most of the romantic comedies I’ve watched, but then, I’ve always taken a slightly different approach to romance.  Put your affairs in order, slip on a bullet-proof vest, and let’s go on a date!