Tag Archives: Experiences

Dating Acumen

by Richard

So I’ve got a friend who’s recently divorced (for the most part).

Okay, fine, dudes. Enough with the laughing. I mean, of course I have friends.


This friend, who I’m going to call Pitt, recently moved to Charlotte from the Pittsburgh (duh!) area and is enjoying life in North Carolina. He’s also enjoying, sort of, the life of the really really separated and just waiting for his wife to sign the papers so he’s almost divorced and is now back in the dating pool.

Pitt is the kind of guy who, upon meeting him, you instantly know is a salesman. He is open, outgoing and more friendly than a room full of well-fed dogs. Not that I’m suggesting he’s going to jump up on everyone and start licking their faces. No. He’s friendly is what I’m saying.

The thing is, he’s also having to date again, for the first time in a long time. And he’s running into a lot of women who are in a similar predicament, in that this is their first time dipping a toe in the dating pool in a long while.

So, I was out with Pitt and a guy who I’ll call Mike. Pitt and Mike met at one of those single-and-looking meet ups, and hit it off because they’re both basically the same people, it’s just one is a bit older than the other. It’s a good thing they became friends, because it certainly makes it easier going to those sorts of meet ups when you know there’s someone there who actually is interesting and wants to talk to you. Plus, now they’ve each got a wingman.

Anyway. We were talking and they were telling me about their dating experiences. Obviously the horrible ones, because those are inherently funny. And the thing that struck me was that the behavior they both were describing sounded really like how the girls in high school behaved.

When I brought up the similarity to Pitt and Mike, they both looked at me like I’d grown a second head. (I hadn’t.) I thought I’d stepped over some boundary, but, it turns out, they were simply gobsmacked because they hadn’t noticed it before and — by golly — I was right.

Well, you could have knocked me over with a very light thing of some kind. I was right.

That’s when I started thinking about dating acumen.

And, like the best of the serialized entertainments, I’m going to leave you with that thought for the weekend. We’ll resume our little one-way discussion on Monday.

Hah! A cliffhanger! I love it!

Share on Facebook

Making Friends

by Richard

Sometimes it’s hard for a young dude with ADD to make new friends. I’ve seen that first hand and experienced it somewhat in my own life.

Along those lines, there’s a great article in the newest issue of ADDitude magazine that talks about how we, as parents, can help our young dudes and dudettes with attention deficit (hyperactivity) disorder to make new friends.

Here’s what parents who read the magazine suggested.

1. Play matchmaker

2. Make friends with other parents

3. Get the young dudes and dudettes involved in group activities

4. Organize playdates (for the younger set)

5. Good behavior makes good friendships

6. Give your young dudes and dudettes talking points and reminders

For the most part, I think these are some pretty good suggestions. The only one I really have a problem with is No. 2, which basically assumes that because we parents are friends the kids will be friends as well. They also suggest that we talk to the parents of kids in our  young dude’s class and tell the parents about any social problems. Assuming then that they would tell their kids to include ours in play activities. I don’t know. . . that sounds like pity play to me and I thought we were supposed to be encouraging friendships.

Of all these, I think the best idea is to get your young dude or dudette involved in group activities. And here I’m thinking specifically about sports teams. Not only will they get some good exercise out of the deal, but the shared experiences will really foster bonding and friendship between teammates.

The most important, though, probably are the final two. These are the ones I’ve most noticed impeding my own young dudes’ efforts at making friendship. All three of the young dudes have a tendency toward acting more than a little goofy. We tried to develop code words that would draw their attention to their behavior. That way, we didn’t actually have to reprimand them in front of guests/friends.

It’s the last one, though, that I think is what can really make a difference. For instance, Hyper Lad makes acquaintances really easy. Not friends, acquaintances. He’ll talk about his great friend, say, Rob. I’ll ask what his last name is. Hyper Lad has no idea. He also has no phone number or other way to contact the kid.

Our young dudes have a tendency to hyper-focus on what they’re doing in the moment and that leaves them forgetful about making sure they stay in contact with would-be friends. That’s where we can help out. A simple reminder might be all that’s needed to kick them into friend-making mode.

Not only a good idea, a good plan.

Share on Facebook

Zippy The Birthday Boy

by Richard

It’s another one of those days here at Compound de Dude. We’re all sitting around, rubbing our temples and trying to come to terms with the fact that it’s been 17 years since Zippy the Monkey Boy popped into the world like a watermelon seed flying into the air.

No, really. He did shoot out when he was delivered. He was in such a hurry to get out into the world and start getting some experiences that didn’t get filtered through that ghastly red light and all those loud sooshings and thumpings.

For the fourth year in a row, we’ll not be celebrating Zippy the Monkey Boy’s birthday here at the compound. Each of the last four years, Zippy has chosen to be at camp, rather than at home when his birthday rolls around. I guess it’s something about being with friends, or having people other than his family think he’s even more special for the day. Maybe it’s so he can get to have two parties: One on the day of his birth and one on the day of his choosing when he gets back to the compound. Or something like that. Whatever the reason, the young dude surely loves to be elsewhere on his birthday.


He’s an interesting dude, is our Zippy. He is probably one of the most straight-up stubborn people I’ve ever met. Now if only we could get him to use his powers for good, rather than evil, all would be well. His stubborn streak can occasionally come in handy when he has to power through some tough homework or do something that’s difficult. Mostly, though, he’s using that stubbornness to bring up yet again why he should be allowed to stay out until 11 pm on a school night.

One of the great things about our Zippy is that he’s really fun to talk to. No, seriously. A teenager who’s fun to talk with. He’s often got a unique perspective on things that are going on and, even when he’s so wildly off base it’s appalling, he always manages to make an eloquent case. Considering most teenaged dudes make arguments through grunts and snorts, that’s pretty impressive.


Even though you’re not here, Zippy the Monkey Boy, we’re thinking about you and wishing you were here. And not just because then we wouldn’t have to be paying all that money for marine science camp.

Happy birthday, Zippy. You are loved and cherished.

Share on Facebook