Back when I was about 50 lbs lighter and had what seems like oodles more time to devote to blogging, I wrote a piece for “Bright Eyes Blurbs” called “Why NOT to Date the Nerdy Journalist Chick.” Number eight on the list was simple, understated (no, really) and, I had always thought, obvious — we will write about you. Even the guy I've only been seeing for about a month now couldn't escape the blogosphere for long. See last week's post “It's a God thing.”
As I lurch quickly into my second year in my role as Sandy's community reporter, some amendments to that list, if not an entire second list all together, have become obvious.
At the top: It ain't easy dating the small-town reporter.
Aside from the apparent issues, like the fact that I'm some kind of odd, almost mythical creature who can function at a very high level on an hour of sleep, a grande nonfat blonde vanilla latte and well-applied mascara, the people in the community I write for are another large reason why dating me isn't easy.
Sure, in our initial conversations via text, the events and festivities I get to experience for my job may sound like fun, maybe even amusing tag-a-long, date-like activities. But unless we're exclusively dating, you probably won't go anywhere east of Orient Drive with me.
Feel free to hit the slopes at Timberline, grab a pint at Boring Brewing, scarf a breakfast burrito at the Sandy Shell station, but it won't be as my +1.
It may sound harsh, but to meet the people in my coverage area — or at least a large number of them — would be like meeting my parents, times about 20.
I'm not just being conceited by saying those people care about me. Hell, half of them wanted to Anatevka-style set me up to make sure I didn't leave when Mr. Undecided exited the picture. One friend in particular is constantly reminding me that my options for a partner should be “a doctor, a lawyer, anyone with money.”
Call me Tzeitel, I guess, but I'm not marrying Lazar Wolf.
To be as entrenched in a community as I almost have to be to do my job presents unique challenges, but more so it offers special advantages — friendships, perspectives, experiences — I might otherwise never have had.
I feel just as protective of that as certain members in the community feel of me. And because of that I try to keep any would-be suitors out of my neck of the woods until they've been thoroughly vetted.
If you should earn an introduction to the town I have come to love and spend more time in than I do my own apartment, I'd say you should consider yourself pretty damn lucky. Not just because I'm such a catch, but because if you care enough about me, they'll care about you too.