In Dating, Essays, The Daily Drool on February 15, 2009 at 5:41 am

A lot of my girlfriends back home ask me why I go on and on about dating in LA being so rough, and how it is that I’m still single what with my great sense of humor, wicked smarts, and sexy legs (alright, so I may be throwing that last one in there of my own volition) but, well, I think it’s a great question.

What comes to mind when I say  “Los Angeles”?

 Think about it.

Keep thinking.

Are you envisioning Bel Air mansions full of beautiful people? Perhaps sumptuous, sun-filled sandy beaches full of beautiful people?  Hot night clubs with the hottest music coolest drinks, and beautiful people?  Or maybe your local cineplex rife with silver screens full of… oh yeah, beautiful people?  

See where I’m going?

Pretty people move to L.A.  It’s a fact.  And if you aren’t pretty when you get here, you sure as hell make fast friends with the MAC girl at the mall before you pull out mamma’s credit card and buy yourself some better shoes.  

They come here because they want to be movie stars or have their own reality show (or sleep with the ones who do) and they flood the marketplace!  There are so many pretty men and women here, it should be illegal.

It’s like the cars.  

When I first moved to LA, I couldn’t believe how many fancy cars I was parking next to at Ralphs.  I’d pull in with my funky little Mercury and its funky little “SQUEAK”, and I would be ogling the Jaguars, Bentleys, and other dollar signs sitting in the parking lot like the small town sweetheart that I was.  But now I don’t even blink when I see a $50,000 car roll by.  And I don’t turn my head when there are Brad Pitt look-a-likes in the room either.  Well, maybe I turn a little… but you understand what I’m saying?  They’ve flooded the market!  They’re everywhere!  My bouncy, blondie self has got MILES of competition and most of them are more polished, more perky, and easier to be around than I ever will be.  

And it’s not just the pretty faces that I’m competing with, I’m diving into a dating scene that is built upon the “Me.”  The “I”.  (Cue big echoey voice) THE SELF.  

I’m talking about the people who move here to write, direct, or otherwise get paid to spend copious amounts of time in their imaginations… They are everywhere.  Imagine, if you can, a massive, hungry, writhing mass of bodies all fighting to get their hands on a very small number of carrots… leaving very little time for anything but, well, carrots.  Just ask Mr. Example, the substitute teacher by day and starving film director by night, what he likes to do with his spare time and chances are that he’ll answer you with a hearty “HA!  What spare time?”  

People come here to get ahead, and it’s very hard to do that with someone else’s emotions and well-being on your plate.  

Sure it’s nice to seek solace in another’s arms, go to the movies, share a meal or two when you’re feeling down or have cause to celebrate, but ask any one of my LA girlfriends when the dinners start becoming scarce and they’ll tell you it’s right around the time they start asking for something more reliable than an “I had a good time, let’s hang again soon.”

You see, if you’re looking to get partnered up out here you stand a very good chance of chasing after someone who is very busy chasing after them-self.

Take my girlfriends and I as an example.  We’re all a couple years before or after thirty, and we run the gamut from artist to bartender to financial guru to even a friggin’ doctor, and we’re mostly still single, still fabulous to look at or to squeeze, even to theoretecize with… but to keep?  

Well, it’s LA.  

And it is grossly populated with dreamers, entrepreneurs, and capitalists, which means that for every 1 person wanting to find a balanced, healthy, long term committment, you have to work your way through about 20 or so others who just want to have a good time without worrying about commitment, obligations, or meeting your mother.  Because they’re not ready.  Because they’ve got to make something of themselves first.  And can you really argue if you came out here to make something of yourself too?

So…  you learn to deal with it.  

You keep your expectations low.  

You don’t ask for very much, so they don’t have to give very much, so you can both play at having a relationship as long as you can take it…

Because as any sensible Los Angeleno knows, there are always plenty of others waiting to take your (or his) place, and any part (no matter how small) is better than doing without any at all…


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