Detectives and Dating Deal Breakers
Sasha Jackson and Clare Vengel, two sassy, sexy sleuths, discuss men and sex and dating. These two aren’t exactly experts... Romance advice from them is kind of like asking PETA for barbecue tips...
Sasha: I’ve sown enough wild oats. It’d be nice to meet someone more serious. I’m definitely not looking for a one night stand.
Clare: No? I like one-night-stands. I'm open to more – I'd love to fall in love one day – but until I do, I don't see the harm in having fun with the search.
Sasha: The search can be fun, up to a point, but there’s nothing worse than a disappointing one nighter. You know, the kind where you want to ask him “is it in yet?”
Clare: Ha ha. Trying to remember if I’ve ever been drunk enough to ask that out loud...
Sasha: Actually, I’ve only said that twice. In both cases, the guy was out the door within minutes. So, um, physical attributes aside, what are you looking for in a guy?
Clare: A body I want to wrap myself up in. I think I have fairly classic taste – tall, strong – I like dark hair, but blond is OK as long as he's manly enough to compensate. And he has to have a brain. Nothing turns me on like conversation.
Sasha: Ha! I expected you’d say that he should have a motorcycle and know how to fix cars. My ex-boyfriend Mick would be great for you.
Clare: Yeah, Mick’s hot. But musicians are so temperamental and angsty. It's like they're looking for a shrink and a mother, not just a girlfriend. Plus it would be awkward, dating your leftovers.
Sasha: I wouldn’t turn down a date with that professor guy you did, what was his name? What was his name... Matthew?
Clare: His name was Dirty Dog. A great lay, but he’s a dog. I should have made him wear three condoms. Anyhow, I thought we were supposed to be talking about dating and not just sex.
Sasha: Oh, yeah. Um, so our dating criteria so far is a brain, right?
Clare: Yes. A brain that can penetrate mine. I don't even mean that sexually. But I like a guy who challenges me – makes me think about things differently than I did before I met him. You know what I mean?
Sasha: Definitely! And a pulse would be good too.
Clare: They’re better in bed if they have a pulse.
Sasha: Ah, we’re back to sex again...
Clare: There's no avoiding sex. Chemistry tells you a lot about how you connect with a person.
Sasha: Does it ever! Anyhow, well, what about style? I’m not into a metrosexual who dresses better than I do, but it’s good if the guy doesn’t wear black shoes with a brown suit.
Clare: Suits are just bad all around – they tell me that he takes life, and himself, way too seriously. And I could not agree more about metrosexuals. I want a man to look like a man. My perfect guy dresses like the Marlboro Man. Maybe minus the cowboy boots.
Sasha: Agreed. What about hobbies or interests? I’d like a guy who’s in good shape, but not super-jock, and even worse, I can’t handle a couch potato sports junkie.
Clare: Yeah, muscle guys who put in too much gym time are a turn-off too. I'm cool with sports fans, as long as they're not into football. I like watching sports that have excitement – hockey, NASCAR, even soccer's okay. But football? I want to slit my wrists, that game is so pointless. But you hate all sports, don't you?
Sasha: Guys who scream at the TV and plan their week around the NFL, NHL, NBA. I like actually going to sports events, but I just don’t get them on television. I roll my eyes when I see guys start screaming at the TV.
Clare: Oh – I agree about the fanatics. Sports obsession is stupid. But so is obsession in general, don't you think?
Sasha: Don’t get me started on obsessive-compulsive types. Remember Victor?
Clare: Oh, yeah. The shooting. Forgot about that. Sorry. But at least you’re still alive.
Sasha: Hard to argue with that. Anyhow, back on track. Another deal breaker is if a guy’s a complete redneck.
Clare: That means you’ll never date any of my cousins.
Sasha: Well, if they’re anything like your cousin who can burp the whole alphabet, I’m okay with taking a pass. Being a little bit cultured is important.
Clare: Sure. As long as he doesn't want to drag me to the opera—
Sasha: —he should know that the “T” in merlot is silent! And he should know which fork to use.
Clare: I don't care about wine and forks. Give me a beer and a pub meal any day. But I care a lot about how he treats the staff. If he's rude, entitled, or condescending, he's so not getting into my bed.
Sasha: Being snotty to bartenders is a deal breaker. And cheap tippers suck.
Clare: They're the worst. I don't mind frugal guys – it's good to be smart about money. But cheapness says two things to me: (a) Selfishness. A cheap tipper isn't thinking about how good the service was, how good the meal was, or anything outside of himself. He's thinking, How can I keep the most money in my wallet? And (b) Limitation. Someone who's too reluctant to part with their money isn't experiencing all they could in life. I don't want someone who racks up huge debt because they want to drive a flashy sports car. But I do want someone who wants to try new things – like snorkelling or skydiving – and isn't overly concerned about hoarding those dollars instead.
Sasha: I’ve dated a few guys I’d like to push out of a plane or hold underwater. Okay, now, ’fess up. Do you do a background check on a guy before the first date?
Clare: I should! I've actually never thought of it before, but I do have access to information most civilians don't. Thanks for the idea. What about you?
Sasha: Uh, well, usually, yeah. Let’s just say I regret the times that I skipped the background check. Like, I wish I’d known in advance about the guy with pigeon fixation, and the guy with no gag reflex, and the guy who wears his dead mother’s housecoat every Saturday.
Clare: Wow. Well, if you ever need info only cops can get, you can always call me.
Sasha: What’s the worst break-up or date you’ve ever had?
Clare: Worst break-up: Lance. I caught him in bed with another woman – I'd say she was the town ho, but it turns out our town has a lot of hos. In the aftermath, my friends started telling me about things they'd seen, rumours they'd heard . . . other women they hadn't wanted to mention when Lance and I had actually been a couple. Some friends, right? Wait until it doesn't matter, then drive in the pain with a corkscrew. What about you?
Sasha: I was on vacation once, with a guy I’d been dating about 4 months. We were at an all-inclusive in the Caribbean, and he was acting like such a jerk. To him, all inclusive meant drinking his face off—
Clare: —like he had to get his money’s worth.
Clare: Fucking cheapskate. Did I mention I hate that in a man?
Sasha: Me too. Anyhow, halfway through the trip, I took off. We were at the buffet restaurant at the resort, and I said I had to run back to the room for something. I’ve never packed so fast in my life. I bolted outta there, checked into my own room, and never spoke to him again. Didn’t even make eye contact with him on the flight home.
Clare: That's actually kind of funny. I've never had anything that dramatic, but some friends once tried to set me up with a guy a few towns over from mine. They told me his lawyer was working on getting his conviction overturned, like that was a selling point.
Sasha: Oh, my god!
Clare: And once when I was on a bus, I met a guy who leaned in real close and told me he was in the CIA. I must have looked interested, because he kept talking all the way from Toronto to Orillia about the people he'd “silenced.”
Sasha: Did you give him your number?
Clare: I gave him yours.
Sasha: Okay, so the checklist for dateable guys then is a pulse, decent manners, a bit of culture—
Clare: A sense of humour.
Sasha: A brain...
Clare: And – okay this one might sound weird – but you know how in some relationships, it's like your personality gets swallowed? I want a man who makes me feel more like myself – stronger, not weaker.
Sasha: He’s got to be confident and comfortable in his own skin. Anything else?
Clare: A nice cock.
Sasha: I just might start blushing...
Clare: I think that covers the must-haves.
Sasha: It’s a rather short list, when you think about it. We’re really not that hard to please. What about the deal breakers?
Clare: For me? Cheapness, criminal records – unless they've been overturned – and metrosexual angsty musician-types. For you?
Sasha: No more stalkers, and I’d better not recognize the guy’s voice from the 1-900 smut call centre!
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