The great thing about family is the no-holds-barred critique of each other. I just spent the last three days with my family and the title reveals some of the lessons I learned. I bring this up in part because I also discussed my dating life to a greater extent with my family than I have before. These are things which, while not mentioned by those that said them, are quite possibly partly responsible for my lack of a dating life. In a related article in the next few days I will criticize the ladies I was fortunate enough to spend time with in a dating setting, but for now, let the self-inflicted torture begin!
Strait up, I have not spent much time around members of the opposite sex over the last seven years. That is not completely accurate, I spent time with a number of women scientists and engineers who were, and as far as I know still are, incredible. However, some of them have few manners and are messes as well. None of them smell, but I attribute that to my plethora of running clothing that I detest washing after only one use. It is interesting, as I think about the women I knew through college the best, those that are in committed relationships (I can think of only seven) are without exception in a relationship with another scientist or engineer.
I am reading "Steve Jobs" by Walter Isaacson and he talks about Steve's "reality distortion field" he would distort reality to get his way. In other words, someone would say it will take a month, and he would convince that person to do it in a week. That was his reality. Sometimes it worked, although other times it did not. For years he was a fruitarian (one who eats only fruit) and bathed only once a week and believed he did not smell... he did.
The point is, I feel I have created a reality distortion field around myself. Examples: going to Pakistan under-experienced, running at the Olympic Marathon Trials in 2012, and my career goals which are so far out there that I am not comfortable writing them down here for all to read. I have assembled this image of how the world works and what is possible for me and what matters that I excuse myself from the responsibility or the courtesy of obtaining or even maintaining the social graces desired when in dating mode. The potential hazard is that the mess or smell of my apartment will likely make a larger impact upon an interesting lady than my passions, my ambitions, my skills (you can laugh but I do a handful of things pretty well), or my beliefs. Perhaps it is for the better. I don't want a relationship built upon how well I smell while we are dating.
This is a very interesting time in my life. Twenty-five years is right in the thick of interesting changes. There is so much I do not know and so much more that I know now than I did seven years ago when I left high school. I have dramatically changed in the last two years as well. There was Paksitan, then unemployment, now a career. Looking ahead two years I have no idea where I will be. I have a few ideas which state I will live in and what I might be doing for an income, but who knows. I guarantee I will not the person in two years that I am even today.
In summary, thank God for family! It is not always pretty, and as often as not it can be hectic, but at least for me, it is honest.