And if worrying about disease and sexual violence and sheer busyness are not hindrances, well, then: look around.
People just don't seem to care about their appearances. To wit, my grandmother would don make-up and fashionable clothes just to go to the grocery store. Today...goodness. We see our fellow shoppers with rear-ends hanging out of pants-sans-belts or pants with elastic bands (note: if you MUST, at least wear clean and attractive underwear), ripped and soiled shirts, and clothes that do not fit.
My motto: if you have to pull it up, pull it down, or pull it out, you shouldn't be wearing it. More people should take heed.
Single friends regale me with tales. My taxonomy is simple.
First, bad manners. I discern two general types. (a) There are those who lack ostensible control over bodily compulsions: passing gas, burping, picking one's nose, allowing food to fall from the mouth while dining, spitting while talking. (b) There are those who haven't a clue about inter-personal relations: those who are completely self-absorbed, those who ignore the date, those who are possessed of a curious inability to converse about anything in any depth save for the weather, those who disclose everything--every thing--on the first date. Transparency and honesty are values to be honored and cherished, but gees. Self-respect, anyone?
Second, self-representation/personality. I offer a tripartite classificatory scheme. (a) There are those who exhibit no overt sign of an education. "Like, you know, like, whatever, it's kinda like, you know..." Insert giggle/laugh here. (b) There are those who are just desperate. "I know this is our second date, and this may surprise you, but, will you marry me?!" Or, on the other extreme, there are those with a seemingly singular interest in sex only/talk later. (c) There are those with no palpable interests in life: not cars, not travel, not food/cuisine, and certainly not gardening. "Nope, don't read. Too boring. I can't sit still that long." "Ah, so you must like sports." "Nope, I don't watch sports. Don't even like doing them." "Ah, you must like movies. (Oh wait, you can't sit still that long.)" "Haven't been in a movie theater since my mother made me watch E.T. in 1982." News? "Hate that stuff; too depressing." So what the f--k to you do in your spare time?! My friends scream inside. (I frankly love these stories.)
Third, for those who engage on-line dating services, there is an entirely new set of problems: let's call this advertising. There are those who submit forms littered with typographical errors (really people? Ever heard of spell check?). Worse, there are those who prefer to brazenly misrepresent the self, either by uploading a very outdated photo of oneself (a deliberate attempt to hide something), or by describing oneself in questionable ways. Putting one's proverbial best foot forward shouldn't be interpreted as lying, or even stretching the truth, for the truth is not as elastic as we may think.
No wonder why the practice of "friends with benefits" developed: no commitment, and you know what you are getting.
I, ahem, cough, have friends with benefits.
(read aloud with Austin Powers voice) Benefits that get my rocks off, baby. Oh yeah!
Get my rocks off, indeed! For off the truck they came, and came.
Rocks. And you all know about my rock fetish.
Erin and her mom Linda recently brought me rocks: beautiful rocks.
Slates: slender and so sexy.
I ooze with delight.
So I finished some projects: a proper retaining wall around the Bed-Formerly-Known-as-the-Lantern-Bed,
and the crescent bed bordering the stone patio;
and a new terrace around the Itea, which I planted in front of the Japanese Tree Lilac in the front garden, and a new lavender bush.
With the rocks I once used, I was able to widen the Buddha bed to help alleviate some of the crowding in the East Side Shade Bed (though I have yet to finish moving some of those plants).
Rocks and slates (not to mention the Blue Star Linda brought me, or the Spiderwort and white and purple day lilies Erin also brought me two years ago): the best benefits friends-with-benefits can offer!
*** Many thanks to Linda B. and Erin B.***