Deconstructing Dickweeds on OkCupid

I have had what you could call,  a tumultuous long-term relationship with online dating over the last several years. (Here’s an old blog I kept of some of my horror dates)  Sometimes it’s great, and I meet someone cool.  Other times, I meet someone so sadly  bizarre and depraved I wonder if I’m participating in Real Life.  Then, there are other times I myself am that person.

Anyway, I’ve basically grown to the point where, I only log in to my dating profile so I can read the profiles and messages I get out loud in different accents. I don’t go on dates really.  Sometimes I write back to assholes, because I feel like picking a fight with someone from far far away–especially when I’m raging with PMS. And sometimes, I just gotta laugh.

Consider this asshole.

He wrote to  me from North Carolina or something. Though I explicitly state “Locals Only” in my profile in huge, ALL-CAPS neon letters,  this guy writes anyway.   So, my rule is, I don’t hollerback a clown who can’t read  my  profile. You dig?  UNLESS OF COURSE HE WRITES ABOUT HIS DEAD WIFE. Then, my sympathy strings plucked, I decided to  write him back to clarify. (Even though by then, I was  already cheesed at the fact that he just “decided” for me that age/distance wasn’t a barrier.


Dot. dot. dot.

Is he….maybe a little slow, I thought?



And here is where any iota of pity I may have had for this  sad stupid man dried up and caught fire, the flames fanned to great and dangerous  heights by my PMS.

I hated that this dude  called me “a lady”, when my uterus was ready to explode blood.  I hated that he thought I was “understanding.”   I hated his stupid Gavin Newsom haircut,  his lame attempt at humor, his weird use of the word “International” to describe someone,   and yes, I even hated  his stupid dead wife, who he mentioned, not only in his first message to me, but at least THREE TIMES in his profile bio, which isn’t (at least in my mind) some form of “radical sharing” by a sensitive wounded  guy who’s putting it all out there…it’s just creepy and manipulative. Why are you pushing your dead wife into us, breh? BREH. THAT IS A HEAVY BURDEN TO GIVE A STRANGE WOMAN.

I decided this needed to end once and for all. So, after crafting several eviscerating drafts,  worthy of scum manifesto awards,  I settled on this, and decided If he writes back I’ll report him to the online dating authorities, and block his ass.



And guess what………He wrote back!





Heres to love and idiocy  in the digital age, y’all.

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Market Hall freaks me out


Much like the Original Berkeley Bowl,  Market Hall in Rockridge totally  freaks me out.

I guess I sorta believe in all that feng shui shit. I mean, in the sense that…certain kinds of  store layouts and aisle design can cause chaos and confusion  in certain kinds of specially challenged brains.

Like mine.

I never go to Berkeley Bowl on a Sunday afternoon, because  I’m afraid I’ll beat a hippie to death with a spelt baguette.  And I try to avoid Market Hall entirely–even though it’s right by my house. Because it’s expensive.  And  also because one evening,  I went full-on Rain Man  sensory-meltdown, trying to navigate their line/cue system.  

I can’t remember what I was purchasing that night. Probably some cheese, or pickled free-range kumquats. (the uszh)  Anyway, I was standing in what I thought was the check-out line.  BUT I GUESS I WASN’T.

“Ma’am you need to be in that line over there,” said an irritated looking woman behind me.

“Oh, which line?” I asked, turning around, looking at the woman. She looked like almost every  other women in my neighborhood–28 going on 68. Tired, hungry, and probably hasn’t gotten laid since New Years Eve 1979.

“That one,” she said, pointing. “That one over there.”

There were at least three lines!!

“Ma’am!” shouted  one of the cashiers third line over, looking right at me, beckoning me with a gloved hand.

Aha!  Yes. Direction from the staff. I will follow obediently. I walked, stiltedly towards the cashier, disturbing line # 2 as I pushed between it to the other side.

“Excuse me, sorry,” I muttered.

“No– Ma’am-MA’AM!” shouted a random older dude, as I continued my frankenstein rampage through the lines.

“M’am— she’s saying go to THAT other line over there!”shouted the irritated woman. I turned around.


Too many voices!  Shouting! Pointing!  Calling me Ma’am!  WHAT DO THEY WANT ME TO DO.  I froze, and  everything went all white-noise.  People yelled,but I couldn’t tell what they were saying anymore, however, their faces looked super hostile and exasperated.   I felt like I was in that scene in Clockwork Orange where the old folks  gathered  around Malcom McDowell, and caned him to near-death. Why are they shouting so many shouts at me?  

And then, one of the cashiers actually came out from behind the cash register counter, and took me by the elbow like nurse Ratched.  “Are we going to the pillow room?” I wanted to ask. “My teeth itch. I want some jello with grapes in it, and then the green pills.”

“Just come over to this register, ma’am.” said the cashier,  and I marched alongside her, as the other folks in line sighed and tsked, and wondered out loud what the problem was with me. 

I bought my groceries, and I fled Market Hall.

And now, I never go back to Market Hall if I can help it , unless it’s for the awesome pizza at the bakery in the front, because, after all,  it’s only just one line. 


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Lee Ford, you’re going down


I’ve done some pretty wacky things  to get attention on the internet in my day. I’ve sexually propositioned Nigerian spammers.   I’ve forced hapless roommates into meatball costumes and then force-fed them tomatoes, while filming them.  I’ve stripped to a 7 foot merkin on stage and rapped about pubes (way before Amanda Palmer did that shit y’all). I even enjoyed a brief stint as a Charles Manson impersonator. Y’know. Stuff.

But despite all of these wacky  things, I remain resolutely unpopular on the internet.  Which means, the only people who are really looking at anything I post online  are my sweet parents (who are beyond being traumatized by now),  a few friends, and some rando pervs from Ukraine. (Note: I am definitely okay remaining an underground phenomena) 

Well….. my true fame came to me last week, when I saw an ad for eyebrow gel pop up on Facebook, and decided to comment on it.  I was waiting at the train station and didn’t think much about it. I didn’t read the ad, didn’t watch the video. Only  saw the headline and felt compelled to react. 


I HAD NO IDEA I WOULD SUDDENLY RISE TO FAME from my stupid comment. That my star would shoot to the moon, and continue to spit stardust and rainbows  almost a week after the initial comment was made.  I WAS THE # 1 COMMENT FOR FOUR DAYS. I watched as my likes climbed ever higher….100, 125, 150…..Where I can I go to accept my award, bitches? Should I prepare a speech now? 


And then, last night, I saw that I was NO LONGER THE MOST POPULAR COMMENT.

Fuckin’ Lee Ford overtook me, by at least 20 likes. Just LOOK AT HER STUPID  DUMB COMMENT.


Let’s deconstruct:

“Her eyebrows look really sloppy.”  Sloppy?  Who the fuck  has sloppy brows?   I’ve only known one person who had sloppy eyebrows, and that was my mom’s aunt Jeannie. Jeannie didn’t have eyebrows at all, and so she drew two straight lines in her forehead with a pencil,  to indicate perpetual bewilderment. This is reaching, Lee Ford,  and you know it. REACHING HARD. 

“There is no difference in the before and after…” Okay Lee. You win this one.  I didn’t actually watch the video, because I don’t care enough.   I’ve been using the same eye-brow product faithfully for dozens of years:  REVLON BROW FANTASY.   So, I didn’t feel compelled to lift a finger to press play on the video. But I can say, without a doubt, that’s a minute of your  life YOU’LL NEVER GET BACK. What did I do with my minute? Well, I made a grocery list, balanced my checking account, and I got laid. Bam. 

Finally, what kind of name is Lee Ford? You’re not a dead  presidential candidate.  You’re also not a wilderness tour guide, or an insurance broker. You’re definitely NOT an Alabama Realtor. So who’s the real Lee? Do you enjoy living your life as a lie? COME OUT WITH IT LEE FORD. THE WORLD WANTS YOUR REAL NAME.

And lastly, the absence of punctuation on “What am I missing here    ” Is this a rhetorical? Did you fall asleep before you had a chance to include a question mark?   You should lose some likes for bad punctuation, Lee. If I had the power to remove them myself I would, but it looks like  I’ll have to message all of your followers to ask them to reconsider their liking your comment, one by one. 

I have no other choice at this point, to regain my honor. I hereby summon you LEE FORD  to the BATTLE OF THE BROW.  Meet me next Friday, high noon, at the corner of Shattuck and Allston way and we’ll SEE WHO’S THE REAL WINNER. 


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Naked, afraid and stumbling

Hey kids, here’s another spa story.

Last year, I made the mistake of forgetting my contact lenses for a spa trip. Because of this error, and because of my Mr. Magoo-level nearsightedness I was left with two rather bleak choices:

  1. Wear my  glasses in the spa. Get sweaty.  Glasses slide off my sweaty face, into hot tub. Swim around hot-tub looking for glasses. Grab a titty by mistake. Get thrown out of spa.
  2. Go without glasses, and spend afternoon sitting  naked in broom closet thinking it is dry sauna. Complain to coat rack about the dry sauna not being hot enough. Urinate in washing bowl, thinking it’s toilet.


Fortunately, my friend and (spa partner) offered an alternative solution:

“I have a little satchel thingy,” She said.  “Why don’t you just carry it around with you. You can put your glasses in it when you’re using the hot tub/sauna, and wear your glasses when you’re walking around so you don’t bump into people.”

And  that, my pals, is just what I did.The satchel strategy  worked quite well, until I got into the dry sauna. I put my towel out on the bench, placed the satchel above my head and stretched out to enjoy a good 5 minutes of sweating it out.




Ohshitohshit. My glasses. Fallen down!  Deep into the cracks of somewhere! 

“Okay. Listen. Whatever you do. Don’t panic” I told myself. Of course, my body never listens to any of  that horseshit. STAMPEDE! said my body. STAMPEDE! With a jolt I sat up, and kicked some woman in the head who was lying below me.


“Sorry!” I whispered.

It was useless to try and look for the glasses myself. Because the light was dim, you see, and because everything around me looked like a mash of golden brown wood  with blobs of pink and tan (indicating people).

I needed help. Julie. Need to find Julie friend.  

I carefully lowered myself down from my perch, and stumbled out into the main spa room. I walked slowly, deliberately, with huge eyes, like a wide-awake sleepwalker, searching for a blurry pink smear that looked like my friend Julie. I couldn’t just say “HEY JULIE!” because there’s a no talking rule at the spa. (They will sound a gong if people are talking).  All I could do was slowly lumber about, turning my head this way and that.

Finally,  I found her.

“Hey, Julie” I whispered. “I dropped my glasses in the dry sauna, and I can’t find them! Can you help me?”

“I’m not Julie,” whispered the female voice. “Sorry!”

I continued my naked shamble around the periphery, swaying my head this way and that. Then, I spotted a pink smear with a black circle in the middle. Julie’s tattoo!! Julie!!

“Hey, Julie,” I whispered. “I dropped my glasses in the dry sauna. Can you help me?”

“Oh dear. Sure mama,” she whispered. (THANK GOD I GOT THE RIGHT PERSON)

We  both went into the dry sauna, to search, and found the glasses. They had fallen down to the bottom row of benches.

And this is why, whenever I go to the spa with Julie now, she reminds me 1,000 times to bring my contact lenses. 

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An old woman farted on me at the spa (and I totally deserved it)


Okay. Let me preface this story  by saying, I am always painfully aware of, and and  polite to old people. I always offer my seat on the train, and I have gone out of my way to help older folks when the situation calls for it–sometimes way out of the way. (See why Helping the Elderly is Dangerous)

However, on this particular day, I was feeling a little….I dunno,  selfish I guess. My friend Julie and I were on our bi-annual Japantown spa retreat and my only mission was to try, for a few hours, to live  the impossible dream of  “relaxation”

So, there I was, sprawling on top of a long wooden plank bench. Cooling off from the dry sauna, and drinking some ice  water with a refreshing lemon slice. Doing what I do best: staring creepily at strangers. 

I watched as an  older woman got out of the hot tub. She looked to be in her late 60’s. Red-faced, and not at all serene looking.  In fact she seemed to be distressed, and as she walked towards my bench, she threw me a withering look.  “Oh dear. Should I do something?” I wondered. “Should I ask if she’s okay? If she needs help?  Should I offer my bench even though she hasn’t asked for it? IS THAT WHAT SHE’S TRYING TO TELL ME?”

Instead I did nothing. An impish little voice in my head said  “Slow your roll, boss. Let her be. If she wants the bench she’ll ask for it. Just cuz she’s old doesn’t mean she’s in distress. Just enjoy your bench, and your lemon water, honky.”

So I did. I leaned back.  I did not offer the older lady my bench. I felt a little bit guilty, but the guilt soon melted away into something relatively- akin to relaxation.  (Since I’ve never in my life achieved full relaxation, the best I can ever hope for is merely  a non-spastic state).

Not long after,  another woman got out of the hot pool, and walk towards my bench. This woman was much older than the previous  woman (probably in her 80’s). I am loathe to admit, my first thought was “Wow, so much old naked flesh, a comin’ right at me! AAAAK!” Stretch marks. Sag bags.  Wobbly puckered thighs.  Intricate webs of purple veins climbing up her legs like ivy. Breasts that pointed down to the earth like arrows–pointing to the place where you, me, she and all of the rest of us, will  one day sleep forever. 

Understand that while I was quietly horrified,  I was also feeling shitty for being horrified, because I truly do  believe all body shapes and sizes and ages should be celebrated–ESPECIALLY the olds!   If someone gets to 80 and they can still enjoy a good soak in a spa, we should throw confetti, and shout hallelujah at their miraculous staying power.   Instead I’m thinking “Ew, gross. So much weird saggy skin! Wobblies! Blue and purple floppyflaps. Death!!!”

As the old woman walked past me, she let  a mighty one rip.  A big, bullhorn fart that reverberated a few moments, and left me tits-deep  in a cloud of sulfur.

I sat up, grabbed my towel, and vacated the bench. I made a beeline to the water cooler, and then back to the dry sauna.  As I opened the door to the dry sauna, I looked over my shoulder, and saw that the wobbly old woman was now  on the bench where I was laying only a minute ago–apparently immune to her own noxious fumes.

Good for her, I thought. Brilliant strategy. I then scribbled a  mental bucket-list note: “Learn how to fart on command, to get whatever seat you want.”

And that’s my tale. Thanks for reading.  


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Total Bitch at the Royal Cuckoo

Because of my wee  bladder,  I spend approximately half my life waiting in line for bathrooms.   But I don’t trip!   If I’ve gotta be there,  I will  find a way to have fun cuz that’s just me. Whether it’s doing a spirited dance to whatever music is playing, or  bragging loudly  to other women that I’m next in line, I always find a vibrant community in the bathroom line.  We are sisters in the struggle!

Except at the Royal Cuckoo one night, where I stood in line with a Total Bitch.

Now.  I use the word bitch quite liberally, to both men/women/children/pets alike.  Like “What’s up bitch, you want dinner?” (said to my cat.) or, …..”Hey bitches, you got any gum?” (said to a group of school kids). Or “You’re one sloppy-hot bitch,” (to my reflection in the mirror, every time I see it.)

My point: In my world, bitch is  always a term of endearment or joyful exclamation,  and never an insult. In fact, I encounter so few actual bitches that I don’t really even have a word for the woman at the Royal Cuckoo bathroom line.]

So, we’re both standing there, waiting in line to pee…Me, and this blonde lady who’s name is probably Kirsten or something.  It’s taking a really long time. So long that I surmised the person in the bathroom, was either shooting up, dropping a death deuce, or painting a fresco with lip-liner.

I leaned  back  against the wall and promised my  bladder sweet relief soon.  EXCEPT THE WALL WASN’T A WALL! It was some sort of flimsy divider thing.. (Sheet? Projector screen? Cardboard?)  This, of course, caused me to stumble backwards, baffled, knocking the screen sideways. Then I started laughing, imagining how it must have looked, because how funny is it when someone leans against a wall THAT IS NOT A WALL?

Kirsten, sensing a disturbance in the atmosphere,  glanced briefly back at me, and then back to the bathroom door. As I brushed myself off, still laughing,   I said to her  “God, what IS this thing anyway?”

Kirsten  then slowly turned her head, looked directly through me for a few seconds, said ABSOLUTELY NOTHING and then slowly  turned her head back to the door.

Now, if she’d just ignored me, I might have just assumed she was deaf, and not taken it personally. But she turned, gave me a full look, AND THEN DECIDED I WASN’T WORTH ADDRESSING AT ALL.

Here is a list of things that could have been said, in answer to “God, what IS this thing anyway?”


  1. I don’t know
  2. It’s a schooner!
  3. Appears to be muslin cloth, stretched between two fishing poles. I saw it on pinterest!
  4. I don’t know, but I’m about 10 seconds away from kakking my jeggings.
  5. It’s a privacy screen. Want to make out?
  6. Heh. Beats me.
  7. Whatever, hipster
  8. (shrugs shoulders)
  9. (nervous laugh)
  10. (tears!)
  11. A portal to another dimension?
  12. Your mom
  13. MY mom?


Any response would be infinitely better than what I got. Which was basically. “Oh, is a human voice speaking to me? Is it Siri? No, Siri is in my hand, she is always there. Does the speaking human look rich and equal/greater than me in status? No?  DISREGARD HUMAN VOICE IT IS LOWLY AND NOT WORTH ACKNOWLEDGING. COMMENCE TO QUIETLY KAKKING JEGGINGS AND STARING AT BATHROOM DOOR. 

And that’s all I’ve got. Thank you.


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The Hippest thing that ever happened to me in Oakland

Everybody knows, there are no real hipsters left in San Francisco anymore. Only fake-ass hipsters.  The people who still listen to vinyl, collect manual typewriters, or have an autographed copy of The Boomer Bible, are all living in Oakland now. Why would we want to spend all our money on rent, when we could live more cheaply, and still have some change leftover for a jolt cola and a thrift store prom dress ?  Priorities, people.

Anyway. I live in the butt-crack between Temescal and Rockridge, in Oakland. Temescal is where all punk rockers and hipsters go to breed. Rockridge is where all the yuppies go to breed. This means, hella kids everywhere. And on Sunday mornings, they all converge at the Temescal farmers market, in the DMV parking lot.

Though I try my hardest to avoid children whenever possible because they freak me out, I can’t help but love  our small and mighty farmers market. The produce! The music!  The samples…

So, there I am, strolling along the farmers market promenade one recent Sunday morning, sipping on my locally-sourced  $7.00 wheatgrass almond smoothie water. Then, out of the blue, I  become enchanted by a bunch of rainbow chard, and some small purple carrots.  I don’t  know what I’d cook with them, but I know they must be mine! MUST HAVE THE PRETTY.

“Excuse me guys” I say to my friends. “Those vegetables are calling to me. I must fetch them now.”

I stand in line with my spoils, waiting to pay.  Then, I’m beckoned by the goth farmers market hipster cashier, to come forth and make my purchase.

“Chard, carrots…that’ll be a fouresy.” She says.

“A…fouresy? “

“Fouresy,” she repeated, winking at me.

(C’mon Arlene, think!)  With a wheeze and a cough, the gears  of my brain begin to slowly turn…..fouresy. Foursey. FOUR-ESY. FOUR…Oh, damn.  SHE MUST MEAN…..FOUR DOLLARS!

“Ah yes, a fouresy!” I say, chuckling.  “Of course.”

I dig into my wallet, and pull out a five dollar bill.

The goth hipster now has her hands out in front of her. One palm is turned up, one is turned down. (I notice she’s got some fabulous LEOPARD PRINT acrylic nails)…. Sensing that this (like many of my interactions with strangers)  has now turned into a comedy improv skit,  I place the five dollar bill on her upturned palm. She then puts  it in in the drawer, and places a 1 dollar bill on her down-turned palm.

I pluck  the 1 dollar bill from her palm, and wink back at her. (I’m cool! I get what a fouresy means!)

Then, as I start to walk away, she says “Psst. Hey.  Wanna see something?”

I nod my head.

Then, she takes out the five dollar bill I gave her, and points a leopard-print index finger at Abe Lincoln’s eye.

“See this?”

“Yeah,” I say.

Eye of the fiver,” she says.

I beam. ‘DUDE. FUCK YEAH IT IS!” I shout, seemingly  unable to respond in any way other than all-caps bro-down speak.

At once, I see  this is the wrong response. The goth hipsters face suddenly changes —from flirty, to…. concerned?     I turn around, and watch as the other customers in line clutch their tomatoes and fennel a tiny bit closer to their chests, giving me the same “do we need to call a hospital?” look.

Sometimes, I wonder if strangers assume I’m a  tweaker.  After all, I’m white,  with crooked teeth and a birthmark on my upper lip that looks like herpes OR A METH SORE. Additionally, I have a tendency, when flustered or excited, to get blotchy all over my face. Lastly,  seem to have but two distinct modes when out in public: withdrawn/observant, or REALLY SPASTIC.
“I—I’m okay!” I shout to the rest of the line.   (AS IF THIS IS REASSURING.)   “I’m okay. Just buying some vegetables!”  (“Definitely not on meth!”)

And then I run away.



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