Suddenly Single… Minded

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Archive for the tag “dating advice”

Are you divorced, but not dead? Dating again at 50

Tricia had not been on a date in 24 years.

She met her now-former husband in college-married – no kids.

Twenty years flew by before he decided the younger, blonder, BMW sales gal was more his style. Bam! Tricia woke up divorced -after being confounded by the nefarious San Francisco judge, Marjorie Slabach. That’s another nightmare.

When he moved out, he took the best of everything: the best art, the best wine, the best sheets (Frette) towels, silver (Georg Jensen.) Thinking, “He’ll be back,” Tricia was compliant, numb and pretty much brain dead -for a time.

Dazed and stricken dumb, (anger had not reared her ugly little head, yet) Tricia cocooned and watched a lot of Netflix. She saw all of Madmen, Breaking Bad, Homeland, Wallender/Swedish version, Luther, and The Wire.

Then, for some reason, she was drawn to “Say, Yes to the Dress.” She wanted Randy, the star of the show – slightly sarcastic, enormously calm, the wedding dress ‘Divo,’ to be her new best friend. When she shared this last bit with her therapist, Dr Q- he strongly urged her to turn off the TV, get out of the house, and return the calls to her friends – it was time.

Friends and family had been calling, showing up and having mini- interventions, to no avail.

Eventually, Tricia went back to book club, started hiking with her pals Linda and Julie, and was slowly getting back to her old self. Her patient and loyal clients re-surfaced and she eased back to work full-time.

Beginners Luck?

On the second anniversary of her divorce, Tricia was up and running on Months before, in a pique of boredom, she had taken a look at Craigslist singles, OKCupid, and Plenty of Fish. She picked up the rope and decided to join the fun. Slowly.

Edward, (San Mateo, 59, medical researcher, newly single) had been on for less than 30 minutes before Tricia sent him a quick note. He was flattered and intrigued – and wrote back. After a spate of e-mails- they spoke on the phone. For an hour. They spoke again, that night – for 90-minutes. It turns out they had mutual friends in Los Angeles, had much in common and the rest is history – they been “an item” ever since. It happens. It could happen to you.

Reality check

No glass slippers, no magic apples or mirrors and smoke. It takes a little verve, a little nerve and a desire to “meet someone.”

So you kiss a frog, get over it. Now is the time – get social – be social – and have fun out here.

Try a 7-Day Free Trial on the dating site that resonates with you. Good luck!


What would Dear Abby say? Go out and play.

Back away from the mouse.

That was the clever way my therapist told me Iimages2 wasted too much time pursuing and perusing men on the Internet.

She said the two hours I spent every day scouring on-line dating sites could be better spent.  And if I removed all the karmic energy I was wasting on not loving myself first, the right man would follow.

So, I did it.

I felt like a reformed alcoholic emptying bottles of booze, one after another, as I clicked away and quit the three Internet dating sites I had subscribed to for six months.

Goodbye to guaranteed to meet a fellow Ivy Leaguer. My ill fated claim to fame- I didn’t meet one man from Penn State, but did meet one from the state pen.    I said ov vey, good-bye and mazel tov to my stable of dead-end flirtations at JDate, the Jewish dating service.

Finally, I disassociated myself with my very favorite site:

I’d met Paul, Rick, Ron, Mike 1 and Mike 2 and Clive on datesRus. It had been a veritable gold mine for first dates and first kisses. However, after the first six dates – it was generally a dead end. I’d gotten really good at first dates. I’d honed the necessary skills to appear fascinated and have developed great eye contact. My friends tease me that I’ve perfected the affected Nancy Reagan stare.

I’ll  admit I’ve become a little cynical.

What is this manic experience?  I call it Dating World. It’s a lot like a theme-park ride- a place you choose to go, a virtual roller coaster~ with a spiritual decline? However, I believe the highs generally outweigh the lows… the volley of flirty e-mails, the phone calls, coffee dates – I called it dessert.

My opinionated and very negative therapist calls the experience the desert.


Mainly because after six dates they deserted.

Actually, not always on the 6th date- but, around or about.  Why?  Is this the norm? That’s what I wanted to know.

So I organized a convivial focus group of eight women – all around the same age (perpetually 39). In keeping with a theme:  Sex in the City – for Girls Over 50

I served pretty pink Cosmopolitans. I’m sure Mark Twain has a great quote about opinions ~ all I know is, give a Single woman in San Francisco two Cosmos and you had better be ready to take notes – there was a tsunami of thoughts and beliefs about being suddenly single in SF.

Merry said On line dating is “the buffet of life”…People  push their trays down the dating buffet line and randomly pick and choose each other. Sometimes too much dessert (sweet- yet, empty).  Sometimes too much ‘fowl’..

Lynn chimed in with she thought people in San Francisco appreciate a Career more than a relationship.

That was fodder for an uproar of conversation.

Lynn continued to say in Suddenly Single world – where tiny cable cars climb halfway to the stars – that there is such an emphasis placed on what do you do not who you are.

(This coming from a woman who attended Hastings  while working as a CPA)

In true form we covered myriad topics.

What we did agree upon was that, above all, what are important are your passions, your loves, what makes you smile and light up.

We  all need to define who we are – what we like.  The two words bandied about were fun and passion.

I love dessert – loathe buffets- I like to have fun – and certainly am not merely defined by my career- but who I choose to spend time with…


Suddenly Single in San Francisco



Dating at 50 – more fun than dating at 20


News: Dating at 50 is a lot more fun than dating at 20

Think about it: you’re a lot more interesting, smarter, and sexier and have way better life’s stories. And, you don’t have to ask your mom to borrow the car.

You’re Not Alone. There are 20+ million singles back in the dating game. It’s boring playing Solitaire and time to play a rousing romantic game of Hearts. Let’s play!  Where to begin?

Here are two very comfortable ways to get social and get off the couch and out of the house.

1.Talk to Strangers. Your mother was wrong: Do talk to strangers. Everyday. It’s okay, and heartily recommended that you smile and say “hey” to five strangers every single day. Try this new mantra on for size: Flirt, flirt, and flirt again.  Start with a smile. Would it kill you to say hello? Try it,

2. Go Outside and Play. You know the adage: life is short? Why waste time? No more perching over a phone waiting for it to ring or checking your emails 10 times a day. Your mother was right: “Go outside and play.” Get off the couch, push away from Facebook, “The Bachelor” and “Dancing with Stars.”  Get out of the house and join a walking, hiking, biking, rowing, kayaking, birding, debate, tennis, Ping-Pong, or spelunking club. Take up the ukulele, swing dancing, or wine tasting.

See for dozens of social groups in your city.

Go out. Venture out. Find a friend, make a friend, be a friend… and explore where the action is in the City and across the bridges.

Best Advice: Get in the game, get active, and enjoy the new adventures in Dating World 2013.

You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enoughMae West

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Only five types of men in Single at 50 World?

photo_1ben918_20060901Suzie K  (57, Palo Alto, high school teacher, baker, avid biker, Aires) has been suddenly-single-again for six years. 

She has dabbled in a half-dozen dating sites including: Craigslist, Plenty of Fish,  JDate,, – and by big mistake, Adult Friend Finder. (Avoid any site with the word “Adult” in the title)

She admits to being somewhat jaded and a little cynical- however, she is unwavering in her estimation there are only five types of single men – her age group and her geographical area (Nor Cal) out there. Here is her list:

Slim Pickens By Suzie K: The Five Types of Single Guys

  1.  Mr. I’m So Cool and Single-perpetually playing the field – for decades.
  2. Recently Widowed – deer in the headlights: seeking a nurse or a purse.
  3.  Recently Divorced – hungry and hunting; not Good-will-hunting. Dating around and bed hopping is a major goal.
  4.  Really Only Separated – a married man – wanna be playboy -playing the field- claims to be doing ‘research. ’ His wife doesn’t understand him.
  5.  Desperately Divorced – cannot adjust to being single and needs someone to cook, clean, iron his socks, and hand him the remote control.

Turn On Your Filter

Suzie K is jaded- she has run into a plethora of playboys and dead-end dates. Why? Perhaps her filtering system is on “low” – as in low expectations and low self esteem. Consistently, she spent minimal time getting to know the man prior to meeting. (Hint: Take the time to speak to a potential date on the phone.)

Initial phone calls and emails may not be the Holy Grail – however, they tell you a lot about a person. Asking questions and conversing with a total stranger should last more than five minutes. And, yes, you are going to Google the guy or gal. Why? Because you want to know exactly who you are meeting. A date with a dud or a Lothario is a waste of time.

Ask questions, talk on the phone, email one another a few times. Don’t get caught up in a morass of emails.  Remember, jumping to conclusions and blithely dating –anyone- can be a waste of time, money, and tough on the self-esteem.

Do your homework. And, have fun out there- dating at 50+ should be more fun than trouble.ilove u_-9

Dating at 50? Spring ahead


Who Me? Dating at 50?  Top Five Ways to Spring into Dating

It’s a well-known fact: Dating at 50 is a lot more fun than dating at 20.

Think about it: you are more interesting, smarter, and sexier and have way better life’s stories. And, you don’t have to ask your mom to borrow the car. Come on in, the water is delicious.

You’re not alone. There are 20+ million singles back in the dating game.  We may be single-so-far and looking, suddenly single via divorce, or really ready for a relationship.

Like you, many singles are bored and lonely – we may have played too much Solitaire and are ready to play a rousing game of Hearts.  And flowers … and romance.

Top Five Ways to Spring into Dating at 50

  1. Do talk to strangers. Everyday. It’s okay, and heartily recommended that you look members of the opposite sex in the eye, smile and say “Hi.” Do this o five strangers – every single day.” Have fun – spring is in the air.  Start now.
  2.  Your mother was right: “Go outside and play.” It’s up to you – perform the ‘due diligence’ and find out where the action is (See: my columns: Top Ten Places to Meet Men and Women in Marin and San Francisco)   Get out of the house and join a walking, hiking, biking, rowing, kayaking, birding, debate, tennis, Ping-Pong, or spelunking club. Try Tango! Thoroughly examine for hundreds of organizations in your zip code.
  3. Adopt and embrace the C’est la vie attitude. You know, life is short and why waste time? Throw off – (or gently remove)  that Shroud of Fear and relax into the singles playground. Tell your friends you are thinking about dating.4.
  4. Be Brave.  So you are ready to start dating again? Want to get back in the saddle? Note: a virtual Greek chorus of friends and family may urge you, to get ‘Back on the horse.’  If you have images of a sweet pony-ride dancing in your head, be prepared. The 2013 foray may be a carnival ride – a-merry-go-round or  a Tilt-a-whirl – at first.
  5. Research and sign up for an online dating site. Try a Free-7-Day Trial – which most big dating companies offer. You don’t need to write a thesis; answer the site’s questions simply,  succinctly with an authentic portrayal of you. Have fun. Yes, it may be exciting or make you very nervous – at first- enjoy the ride.

Some say,  “Better buckle up. It’s going to be a bumpy ride.”  But, a good ride.
Get in the game and enjoy the new adventures in the unique and novel Date World 2013.

It will be as fun as you make it.photo_30433_20140127

BEST: Online Dating Travel Tips – Google ‘em first

photo_10108_20090419roseMolly was smitten.

She met ‘Romantic Ronnie’ online and they clicked immediately.

His photos,  flirting, and multiple photos of his new Porsche overshadowed the fact that he lived two time zones away. She said she loved his humor and his pictures. She shared many of his passions (Netflilx, Chocolate, Martinis and 600 count sheets) Truth be told:  she was ready for real romance. Molly had been in an out of sour relationships and was ready for fun, romance, and passion.

After a handful of emails, they spoke on the phone.

He was a big flirt, and he said, “Come to Atlanta, Sugar – I’ll show you the town.”

(Note: He didn’t say, “Let me buy you an airline ticket and I will graciously pay for your hotel room.”)
Her friends told her to slow down, to ask more questions, to Google the guy, get to know him – more than via text messages, emails and a few phone calls.

She Wanted to “Go the Distance”

She had tons of frequent flyer miles, her cousin lived outside of Atlanta, and she was confident that Ronnie was all that he claimed to be: single, a long distance runner, a CPA, a gourmet, and a Tulane graduate.

Molly’s expensive lesson is a lesson for one and all.

She threw caution to the wind and flew to Atlanta against all advice from friends and colleagues. Romantic Ronnie met her at the airport with flowers, which didn’t disguise the fact that he was much heavier than his photos; he drove his Ford truck (the Porsche was in the shop) and took her to TGIF for dinner.

He drank two Long Island Teas while she sipped a Diet Coke. Initially, Ronnie was a charming Southern gentleman, by the second drink he was a boor. His active flirting with the waitress was the crowning blow.  Molly excused herself and on the way to the ladies room, asked hostess to call a cab to take her to her hotel.

She graciously informed Ronnie that she was going to her hotel and she would call in the morning. He protested. He suggested she stay at his house. He wanted know the name of her hotel.  She kissed him on the cheek and left. The long, expensive cab ride to her hotel gave her plenty of time to dissect her experience with Ronnie. Her friends had been right. She had moved too fast and made an expensive mistake. She called her cousin and arranged to see her the following day. She would send a polite “Dear John” email to Ronnie and end that chapter.

Top Five Tips for Long Distance Dates

Long distance dates are rife with challenges. Be safe, be smart and plan ahead.

  • Always stay in a hotel. Can’t afford a hotel? Don’t go.
  • Never, ever stay in the other person’s home.
  • Upon Arrival: Take taxi /rental car to get to and from the airport. Never, ever get into a car with someone you’ve never met. Can you say Ted Bundy?
  • I’ve got a secret:  be sane: There is no reason to reveal the name of your hotel until you are 100% certain your date is a Boy Scout. (Trustworthy, loyal, honest…)
  • Keep Safe: It’s a date, not a fashion show. No jewelry required. Keep your valuables in the hotel safe. Or at home.

Tell All: On every first date  – in San Francisco –  or out of state –  be sure to advise several friends/family where you are going, staying, and the name and address of the person you are meeting. Yes, even coffee dates. Tell a friend.

Bundle of Dollars MoneyCan you Afford this Date?

You do the math: Round trip  plane ticket, taxi to and from hotel, meals, hotel charges, and misc charges. Then tabulate how much time are you willing to spend on a long distance romance?

Molly used to say all the good men in San Francisco were taken. She changed her mind before she landed at SFO. Lesson learned.


San Francisco Dating@50 Examiner, Page Larkin, welcomes your feedback, questions and queries.

Hey, Santa! The 200 words women want to hear

Santa Baby,

we need to talk.

Listen to this: reports indicate, every day, women say 1000 more words than male counterparts.

We can talk about this, if you like.

Men are way less loquacious – and they talk less, too

A random poll recently conducted at Curves, a nail salon, an OB-Gyn office and a leading yoga studio revealed:


Top 200 Words that Women Would Most Like to Hear Are:

1. Merry Christmas, the  little blue box is for you.

2. You are beautiful; those jeans make you look so thin and sexy.

3. How was your day? You’re brilliant. Hugs.

4. Here, darling, a couple of credit cards. Take them – go on a shopping spree. You deserve it. Macy’s  is having a huge sale.

5. Can I draw you a bath? Let me wrap all the presents.

6. Of course, I’d love to watch a chick flick on the couch with you. ‘You’ve Got Mail’ or “Serendipity”?

7. Forget the 49’ers. Let’s go walk at the beach.

8. I just called to say ‘I love you.’ Did you find the flowers I left on the doorstep?

9. You’re the greatest. Babe, sit down, watch your Soaps, I taped them for you; I’ll do the dishes.

10. I’ve got mistletoe! You and me? Away in the manger?

11. Hark! Do you hear what I hear? The kids are asleep.

12. You’re an incredible woman (wife, mother, best friend) I missed you and vacuumed the house.

Listen, women may tend to be loquacious, voluble and talkative; we have a lot to say.

A savvy Santa is perceptive and sage.

Spice up your life with the Top 200 Words Women Want to Hear.

You MAE go WEST, young man

Mae West Quotes

A dame that knows the ropes isn’t likely to get tied up.

A hard man is good to find.

A man can be short and dumpy and getting bald but if he has fire, women will like him.
A man has one hundred dollars and you leave him with two dollars, that’s subtraction.

A man in the house is worth two in the street.

A man’s kiss is his signature.

A woman in love can’t be reasonable – or she probably wouldn’t be in love.

All discarded lovers should be given a second chance,   but with somebody else.

An ounce of performance is worth pounds of promises.

Any time you got nothing to do – and lots of time to do it – come on up.

Any time you’ve got nothing to do and lots of time to do it come on up.

Anything worth doing is worth doing slowly.

Between two evils, I always pick the one I never tried before.

Cultivate your curves – they may be dangerous but they won’t be avoided.

Don’t keep a man guessing too long – he’s sure to find the answer somewhere else.

Don’t marry a man to reform him – that’s what reform schools are for.

Every man I meet wants to protect me. I can’t figure out what from.

Give a man a free hand and he’ll run it all over you.

He who hesitates is a damned fool.

His mother should have thrown him out and kept the stork.

I always say, keep a diary and someday it’ll keep you.

I believe in censorship. I made a fortune out of it.

I believe that it’s better to be looked over than it is to be overlooked.

I didn’t discover curves; I only uncovered them.

I generally avoid temptation unless I can’t resist it.

I like a man who’s good, but not too good – for the good die young, and I hate a dead one.

I like restraint, if it doesn’t go too far.

Is San Francisco friendly? City Slickers or slackers?


Hey, San Francisco

I say: Play Hard and Work Soft

In my small rural hometown, I noticed most people say ‘Hello,’ and ‘Good morning,’ and ‘Hi’, as they get to work and play in the morning.

Eye contact is involved. People wave and nod to one another. Men and women- alike – hold the door for one another. You hear, “thanks” a lot.    I think there’s more hand-holding in that small town, per capita, than there is in all of San Francisco.

This more convivial behavior is not Amish, Quaker or Mormon. It’s just another mindset. Maybe it’s a throwback to the 50’s. Granted, it  is very Mid-West.

I’m told in San Francisco there’s more emphasis placed on Career Success, than (sit down, drink optional)   Relationship Success.* What’s up with that?

 Why is merely “being friendly” so foreign in San Francisco?

After a week of this time-travel-world, I recently returned to the City.  As my luggage came off the carousel, I was forced back onto the merry-go-round of San Francisco, where we go so fast, we miss meeting one another.

We’ve all got a blog, we’re Linkedn and were on facebook, or Eharmony. We belong to social clubs ~of some sort… and still it is like two ships passing in the aisle at Trader Joe’s?

Did you ever think that just as you’re going out the side door of the store- with exactly the same carefully selected food items in your recyclable bag- that I’m about to buy the same items? And, I too, will walk out, alone, with my recyclable bag?

Revolving doors?

Did we both just work out, see the same film, and go out to dinner with single friends? What are the chances we ski, hike, ride, walk, stroll, or spelunk in the exact same location at different times?

Whether it’s a merry-go-round or teeter-totter – it is a bizarre time to be at the Singles Playground.    
I’ll go out on a limb – unless the ground rules change to involve more social interaction-  like simple  “Hey,” Hello,” Hi,”  and “Good mornings”  we will all be living single solitary parallel lives – so close – and, yet so far away.

     I say play hard – work soft.

*Article  by Dr Tom Lewis – UCSF

Don’t you dare wink at me, buster! Rants for romance

Rants for Romance?

Singles  speak out

This week brings questions about winking, blinking and getting along. Send your “Single at 50” queries to


Dear Page,
I am 52, divorced for six years, and new to online dating. I did everything you said (posted a recent photo, wrote my profile, and enrolled in two different dating sites) and all I get are “winks.”

You said winks at the lowest form of communication, you’re right! Tell men everywhere women hate winks. Don’t send me a stupid icon without a single word – to me that means you can even write a sentence – it means I am just one of 30 women you’re casting about hoping to a hook a sucker.
My advice: just write one lousy sentence; there, I feel better!
Linda in Las Vegas

Dear Linda in Las Vegas,
Thanks for voicing the opinion of many of us. Every week, I get tweets, texts, and lengthy e-mails echoing your same sentiment. Point well taken.

See: Page Larkin’s That’s rude! Dating Etiquette
Peace and love, Page

Dear Page Larkin,
I met a wonderful guy on Eharmony two months ago. We exchanged e-mails for two weeks before he agreed to speak on the phone to confirm our coffee date. Before our date, I Googled him and found him to be “as advertised.” We met at the Ferry Building, walked around for an hour and took the Sausalito ferry.  We had lunch, split the bill; we walked and talked for two more hours and returned to SF. He kissed me goodbye and I never heard from him again.  I e-mailed him once, no response. Was it me?
Down and Out in Danville

Dear Down and out in Danville,
You failed to mention if there was chemistry, heat, or mutual attraction. Manners dictate that a person thank the other for the date – there is an unwritten “law” that – after a first date- two people make plans for future date or bow out, with a polite “It was nice meeting you, we are not at match.” Move on – it wasn’t meant to be.
Peace and love, Page

Hey, Larkin,
I sent out 25 e-mails on and not one woman responded.
My message was cute and flirty and I thought it was really good. What’s up with women today? Is everyone stuck up?
Ronnie in the Marina

Hey Ronnie in the Marina
Remember: spell check is your best friend. Take the time to write a message that is coherent, interesting, and logical. Sometimes our efforts to be clever and sarcastic can be misconstrued. Try, try again.
Peace and love, Page

Dear Page,
My feelings are hurt. I enthusiastically signed up for the seven-day free trial. No one writes back to me!  I am a Georgia peach: 56, 5’6. athletic, smart, cute and fun. I sent out 30 “winks” to all the cutest guys within 50-miles of Atlanta. Not one man responded. Help!
Ashley at Tara

Dear Ashley at Tara,
Good for you for getting out there and trying.
Let’s recalibrate: erase all thoughts of “winking” at men. (See above) It’s a lost cause looked down upon by thousands.
First, create a short introduction linking you to an attractive man:  “I enjoyed reading your profile; especially the comment about… We both like… Please read my profile and if anything resonates, please get back to me. Thanks.
Try that approach –  as opposed to winking.  Wait and see- how it works, do  get back to me and report.  Read : How Rude!     Good luck, Page

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