Friday, October 29, 2010

Question of the Day: What was the BEST or WORST couple's Halloween costume you've ever seen?

We've all seen the ubiquitous "I Dream of Jeannie & Major Nelson," "Fred & Wilma Flintstone," and Doctor & Nurse couple's costumes out there. And I'm sure this year, we'll see our share of "Snookie & Situation" and "Barrack and Michelle Obama" get-ups. But I have to say, the cutest and most original couples costume I've ever seen was a woman dressed as a brick and her beau as a bricklayer! It was even more hilarious when he would dip his spatula in his cement can, scoop up a dollop of "cement" (cool whip food colored in gray) and periodically feed his brick house! Some people are so clever!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Question of the Day: Is it possible to fall in love with someone online who lives in another country?

I keep hearing about these International online scam artists who seduce women by professing their undying love for them, and then attempt to swindle money out of them. Supposedly they use excuses like, their parent is really sick and they need help paying for medication or Chemo for them. Or he just lost his job and will come to see her if she wires him the money to come to the U.S. and he will reimburse her when he gets here. I mean crazy stuff!

But, what about the genuine foreign people who are heartfelt at finding love? What about the earnest who develop feelings for someone online from a different country? Should we become so cynical as to not believe that its a possibility to fall for someone of a different culture whom you would never have had the opportunity to cross paths if it weren't for the Internet?

Call me Pollyanna, but I for one refuse to ever give up being a hopeless romantic in lieu of a few rotten apples. I still believe people are inherently good and that there is nothing that can't be solved with love! Even thousands of miles of oceans, deserts and mountain ranges!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Question of the Day: What do you think are the best/safest topics to discuss while on a first date?

Pulling from some of my own "first date" experiences, here are a few favorite conversation topics that my dates have posed in an effort to get to know me better and to help ease the tension. What I like so much about each subjects is, not only was it a great way to get me interested in him, but it showed a genuine interest in me as a person, which I can assure you, practically every woman enjoys.

  • "What kind of man/woman are you attracted to?" - Not only is this some very valuable information that you can glean from your date, I believe it also shows a huge sign of confidence to ask. It's basically a way to "qualify the buyer" and let's your date know that if you can't live up to their expectations, then perhaps they aren't the right person for you or vice versa. Once you know what kind of person they're attracted to and some of your own characteristics meet those requirements, you can then let those traits shine through as you get to know one another better.
  • Friends - Women love to talk about their girlfriends and from what I can tell, men enjoy it too. It's a fun and safe topic, so simply ask your date about their circle of friends. Talk about how they met, what they like to do when they hang out together, the good times they've had, places they have been, etc. The great thing about this topic is it shows you the type of person they are, by the friends that they surround themselves with. For example, guys, if a woman is going on ad naseum about her girlfriend's high drama-filled lives', chances are, she's coming with her own bag of theatrics that you may very well want to steer clear of.
  • Free Time - Asking your date what they enjoy doing in their free time is very important information to know to determine if you have any common interests. As I always say, birds of a feather flock together and truly compatible couples share similar interests.
  • Siblings - Most people have a brother or sister so this is a very neutral and interesting topic for discussion. I always enjoy when a man looks me in the eyes from across the table and asks me about my family or my relationship with my siblings. I feel it just shows such an earnest interest in me as a person and in what type of household I grew up. Your date will usually be willing and open to talk about their brother or sister, and even if it's not positive feedback, it will give you a lot more insight about your date, including their emotional availability.
  • Vacation or trips - In general, people like to talk about the places they have been and their travel experiences. It's always fun to talk about similar places the two of you have been or where you would like to go. I, personally, love when my dates get me to talk about the places I would like to visit. And what's really cool is when your date mentions some places you've been to as well, and you both can share your experiences. This usually ends up being a great compatibility test, I have found because when two people are as passionate about a destination, it creates sparks!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Question of the Day: What was the longest you stayed in a relationship that you knew you were better off leaving?

We've all done it, stayed too long in a bad relationship.  Do we do this because we're putting off the inevitable pain of the break-up?  Are some of us just too scared to be alone, so we choose to stay in less than satisfying relationships?  Perhaps there's family or societal pressure to keep the union intact.  For whatever reason, many people convince themselves that having this relationship in their lives' is better than not and that the change of ending it, would just be too much to endure.

My constant phrase is, "As long as you are staying with the wrong person, the door remains bolted shut for the right one to enter."  It's Universal law that in order for a good thing to enter your life, the bad one that's holding its space, must first be removed.  I feel its worth experiencing a bit of pain, discomfort and inconvenience of ending a bad relationship upfront, than staying too long in something that's a deadend.  And the longer it lags on, the more you're investing in this person and delaying your own liberation and ultimate happiness.

So if you're currently in a relationship that isn't making you happy, you should seriously consider ending it.  If you're staying for your partner you ought to realize that you aren't doing this person any favors by staying with them out of pity.  And actually, you're deceiving them by allowing them to think that you're committed to them when really, you aren't - at least in your heart. 

Maybe you aren't ready to take the plunge just yet, so try envisioning what your life would look like without this partnership.  Are you freer?  Happier?  Uninhibited?  Joyous?  When it comes to dating and relationships, I feel you're much better off being alone and unattached than being with someone who doesn't inherently make you happy.  Afterall, you have the ability to make yourself happy, and a happy person is very attractive, so it won't be long until the right person comes along!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Question of the Day: How would you feel if your S.O. went to a party without you, while knowing their ex was going to be there?

My girlfriend called me yesterday asking me what I was doing for lunch.  She said she had several hours free as her boyfriend was going to a party and wouldn't be around for awhile.  For some strange reason, my instincts flared up and I immediately asked, "Whose party is he going to?  Why aren't you going with him?"  She said she wasn't exactly pleased about the fact that it was a party his ex was throwing and that he said he would feel "weird" if she went with him.

Well, this did not sit too well with me which I relayed to her.  She said she was trying to be understanding as he was upfront and honest about everything and hopeful he would make a quick appearance and leave.  I told her it raised a red flag that she wasn't invited with him, in fact, asked not to come, but that it was a first time offense and perhaps a last.  I told her she had every right to voice her concerns and to let him know that if it happened again, she would not be as understanding.

Overall, I think its fine for ex-partners to remain friends so long as the relationship is completely platonic and emotionally void of lingering romantic feelings.  To alleviate concerns, new S.O.'s should be introduced as soon as possible to ex partners whom remain friendly in an effort to show complete transparency.  Afterall, those you have nothing to hide, hide nothing. 

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Question of the Day: Why are some people opposed to PDA (Public Displays of Affection)?

When I'm in love (or "deep like"), I'm a mushy gushy, all or nothin' type of gal.  I'm the type that my feelings take over and I just can't help myself from wanting to touch, hold hands or kiss my mate in public.  For me, it's an outward demonstration of my feelings and emotions for that person.  I have, however, dated people that just weren't into the PDA thing.  It was difficult and truth be told, I just didn't "get it."  This person said they were into me, enjoyed my company, was physically attracted to me, and yet, when we were out in public, the displays of appreciation seemed to fall by the way. 

Don't get me wrong, I'm not the type where people from across a crowded bar shout out, "Get a room!" to me and my mate, but I do require some form of physical closeness demonstrated.  It's a sign not only to others, but to me as well that says, "I'm with you, I adore you and I'm proud enough to show off my feelings for you."  If someone is completely against outward displays of affection, generally that's a very good warning sign for me that our personalities probably won't mesh.  I'm very open, carefree, affectionate and fun and I'm a big believer that "birds of a feather flock together."

A woman in my database recently wrote me with this question and shared her story of a guy she was recently dating.  She said when she asked him for a little bit of affection outside of the bedroom, he said that he wasn't the guy for her and that she was asking for too much.  She asked me if I thought she was being unreasonable asking this guy to hold her hand out in public and my response was, "Nope!  But I think he summed it up perfectly, he's not the guy for you!" 

I went on to say that anytime someone tells you that you're asking for too much out of the relationship, then its a big red flag that perhaps its time to assess things and to possibly move on.  And anybody whose going to work through inevitable conflicts in your relationship will stick around to resolve them.  Period!  Not only that, if someone can't hold your hand, kiss or embrace you when people are around, what's the point of being in a relationship? 

Again, you don't need to be groping up on one another and making others uncomfortable to be around you, but if you can't show a little affection once in awhile to your partner, what's really the point?  Afterall, we go into relationships looking for support, companionship and love.  It seems only logical that we relax, enjoy the sensations of love and show what we're feeling about our partners to others.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Question of the Day: If your best friend was too picky in finding a mate and had unrealistic expectations in what they wanted in a partner, what advice would you give them?

I ask this question today because as a matchmaker, its a common theme in my business.  I receive phone calls daily from folks looking to me to help them find love.  Most of the people I speak with are very down-to-earth, open and receptive to my feedback on what they should be doing and focusing upon to help them find a mate.  These are the individuals who willingly embrace their current life circumstances and remain open to what type of person will be attracted to them as well.  Its clients such as these that encounter the best results through matchmaking, because they allow and trust the process to naturally flow and take its course.

This said, however, every now and again I do speak with someone who has unrealistic expectations in what they feel they should have in a partner.  These are the folks who come to me with a stern check-list of what they're looking for.  Typically, they've been single for many years (on average 8+), admit to being "picky" and tend to be more defensive and, what I like to call, "blocked."  They usually become quite defensive when asked why they're still single, complain about "what's out there," and often say things like, "Well, I'm not going to settle!"

I'm not sure if its an entitlement attitude, a defense mechanism, fear of rejection or a little bit of all of the above, but it intrigues me each and every time.  The human spirit is so adaptable, loving and forgiving and yet, the ego seems to be our own worst enemy.  I know I've been just as guilty of holding steadfast to ideals of what my mate must possess, and its finally dawned on me that I'm only hurting my own chances of finding love by being so stubborn. 

Its only been until recently that I've put aside my own ego and examined exactly why it is I feel certain characteristics are a must.  When I pick apart each trait that I feel is a requisite, I realize that when it comes to love, true love, I really am just selling myself short if I'm fixated on something so meaningless like height, hair (or lack thereof), income, etc.  If we're really expecting someone to be a pefect 10, shouldn't we be holding ourselves' to the same standards? 

It was quite sobering when I took that finger, pointed it directly back at myself and realized (**Gasp!!** alert the media), I'm not perfect!  How the hell can I demand the heavens to open up and the love Gods to send down my male equivalent when I, myself, wasn't exactly the absolute be-all-end all celestial being?  And iccckkkk!!  There's only room enough for one diva in this relationship, no I will not be sharing my mirror, and I'll be right back because I have some changing to do and don't want to be dating myself right now, thank you very much!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Question of the Day: Has online dating reached its peak?

With each new client meeting I have or online dating horror story I hear, seems Internet dating has reached its zenith and lately becoming a concept more eschewed than embraced.  From the men I often hear, "Online dating is just not working for me.  I'm either not seeing much quality out there or the women I do reach out to, don't even bother to respond!" 

Conversely, women seem to complain about the dearth of new faces online and about seeing the same "inventory" of profiles over and over.  I think its also more difficult for single women because there are so many more of them compared to single men, so the competition's fierce!  If they aren't showing photos of themselves taken last week in the Bahamas, weighing no more than 120 pounds, with their long locks flowing in the breeze as they work on their doctoral dissertations, they're not gettin' dates!

Let's face it, when it comes to chemistry or that "je ne sais quoi," the odds of finding it over the Internet are slim to none.  I was recently having this conversation with a new client of mine who was being extremely particular about the "type" of woman he wanted me to set him up with.  When I asked him if he would have ever dated his former serious girlfriend based on an online profile alone, he admitted that he wouldn't.  I asked him why not and he said, "Because based on her picture alone, I would've thought that I wouldn't have been attracted to her.  It was everything about her, including her smarts and business sense, that I really fell in love with."

So, sometimes it goes to show, good ol' fashioned dating (You know, the kind where you're either set up based on commonalities or you meet someone out randomly?) really is where the magic happens!  All I know is, either way, you can't manufacture something on "paper," put it out there for the singles masses to see and expect that, voila, your work is done!  That suddenly you'll hear that familiar "you've got mail" tone and Prince Charming is on the other end offering to sweep you up off your feet.  Would it be nice?  Sure!  But let's get real, when it comes to dating, your best bet is sticking to what's worked for the past generations.  Leave technology to the Bill Gates and Meg Whitmans of the world, put yourself together and get out there in the real-time cosmos!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Question of the Day: What was the worst "change of plans" experience you had while dating someone?

I received a frantic call this morning from an old high school friend who was very upset over a woman.  He told me he'd met her online and they'd been communicating now for over a year.  Although they hadn't met yet in person, they were becoming very close and communicated daily either via texts, phone calls or Skype messaging.   I asked him why he was so upset and he said, "Because this is the second time I've gone so far as to book flights, a rental car and hotel room to go and see her, and she panics and cancels on me at the last minute!  Only this time was worse because I actually made it to the airport and checked my bags in already!" 

Another woman from my club told me that she made plans with a guy to go on a date and he called her up the last minute and cancelled due to a "work conflict."  She said she wasn't sure she bought the story, but when he came crawling back around again, decided to go against her better judgement and give it another try.  The day they were to go out, she changed around her work schedule to get off early, rushed home, got herself all dolled up and ready to go.  When 7 o'clock arrived, she waited and waited and waited.  Needless to say, the baffoon never showed up and didn't even have the common courtesy to call her this time with some lame excuse!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Question of the Day: At what point does a friendship with the opposite sex, cross over into an emotional affair?

I was saddened, yet albeit not totally surprised, by the news of the recent celebrity marriage break-up, between Courtney Cox and David Arquette.  Supposedly on Howard Stern, David had disclosed that, although he had also been unfaithful, Courtney had been having an emotional affair with one of her co-stars on "Cougar Town" for sometime now.  I'm assuming by this term, he's making the reference that they were emotionally "involved" without a physical relationship.

This topic really got me dissecting the term "emotional affair."  If you think about it, its wrought with all sorts of innuendo and gray area.  I mean, just because we find ourselves one day in a monogomous relationship, doesn't ultimately mean we can no longer have friendships with the opposite sex.  And just because you work closely with someone daily, doesn't automatically make for a recipe of an instant affair. 

If you are either married or in a relationship, and you have a close friendship with someone of the opposite sex, at what point would that relationship cross over into an emotional affair?  Is it the first sign of a physical reaction when around them such as butterflies in the stomach or sexual chemistry?  Would harmless flirting be considered an affair?  Is it after the two of you share personal information about yourself and/or your relationship with your partner?  When, exactly, do you feel that the lines get crossed from a friendly companionship into an an inappropriate emotional relationship?

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Question of the Day: When with someone you're newly dating, what's the worst thing a friend or family member has said in front of them about you?

Just spoke with a good friend of mine this morning whose been seeing a new woman now for several weeks.  He was lamenting the fact that when he brought her around to his parent's house, his dad completely threw him under the bus by criticizing some of his habits.  I asked him what he meant, and he said that they were all standing around in the kitchen and his dad started making comments about his unhealthy, sedentary lifestyle and poor eating habits.  I said to him that didn't sound like that big of a deal and he responded with, "Yeah, it gets worse!  He goes on to remind her that I'm 10 years older than her and if I don't start changing my ways, I'm going to die soon!"

I couldn't help but to crack up at the absurdity of this as my friend is only 36!  We both laughed but he said he didn't find it at all amusing at the time and felt he didn't need any help in implanting doubt in the woman's mind about his life span, or lack thereof!  It got me thinking and wondering myself what the worst thing anyone has ever said in front of a new significant other and I'd have to bequeath my daughter honorary membership into the mudslinger's club. 

The minute details are just all too embarrassing, but she found much amusement in retelling the story in front of a guy I was seeing, of the time when I came in from a long run on a steamy summer day.  Again, no use in dithering over the details, but let's just say, if you're a runner and you've overdone it, sometimes the body takes over and does what it wants to do without your approval and/or consent.  Both my kids were in stitches at my inability to reach "the facilities" in time and cracked up for days on end about it. 

I'll never forget that mortifying moment when out of her lips comes, "Did my mom ever tell you about the time when she came in from a really long run?"  It was like a slow motion, bad dream flashback where I'm trying to run and can't get anywhere while screaming "Noooooooooooooo!!!"  I've never actually felt my face grow more flush, than when she told this story in full detail in front of this new guy; whom I just so happened to really like! 

Monday, October 11, 2010

Question of the Day: Why do some people say they aren't ready for a relationship, yet they continue to date?

This question is derived from the multiple conversations I've had with members of my organization who say things like, "I started dating this guy who told me he didn't want a serious relationship, but then he does things that show me signs that he really does!"  Or, "I understand she's not looking to get into a real heavy relationship right now, but I just want to spend more time with her."

People, I have to urge you here to please listen when people talk.  If a guy says upfront, "Look, I like you but I'm not interested in a serious relationship right now," do yourself a huge favor and believe him!  No, you aren't going to be able to turn on enough charm and charisma to get him to fall madly in love with you, resulting in his change of heart.  If he does, great, but its not likely to happen.  Further, if what you're looking for is a serious relationship, you're better off to cut your losses now and move on.  This way you can focus your energy into the direction of something you want versus trying to force an outcome that's likely to end in frustration and hurt. 

I think a lot of times when someone is emotionally vested in a person, they tend to hear what they want to hear.  Been there, done that.  I get it!  But, your best bet in the dating scene is to be brutally honest with yourself when you hear or see things that someone is showing you, regardless of the sad feeling it produces.  And the reality is, if someone tells you they aren't ready yet to settle down, it has absolutely nothing to do with you, and everything to do with them.  Perhaps when they're ready or in a better space for something more serious, the right person at the right time will show up.  Regardless, its not your job to figure it out!  Focus on yourself, your wants and desires and all will fall into place perfectly for you.  Like my pal Wayne Dyer says, "Everything is on purpose."

Friday, October 8, 2010

Question of the Day: When it comes to dating, why do we get "the butterflies" over some people and not others?

Today I was envisioning the past few years and the myriad experiences, sensations, and feelings I've had with the colorful array of men I've gone out with.  Some guys triggered feelings of comfort, safety and ease while others generated excitement, anticipation and sheer giddiness.  I have to say, however, it was the rare (and typically unexpected) guy that could provoke the effect of feeling butterflies twittering around in my stomach! 

Why is it that we can have wonderful, admiring feelings for somone, enjoy their company but not get "the butterflies" when with them?  Why does this phenomenon discriminate for specific people only?  Okay, scientifically I know its when you get an adrenaline rush and your blood starts pumping faster making your arteries and veins widen and shrink.  And that it happens around your stomach area making you have "the butterflies"...yeah, yeah, yeah.  But what is it about a particular person that has the ability to cause this response versus  someone who doesn't?

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Question of the Day: Guys, what do you think of the new "Big Bangs" haircut for women? Gals, what's your take on the "Cool Messy" (think Robert Pattinson) cut for guys?

Today was like any other; a Helter Skelter mad morning dash to get the kids fed, packed up and off to school.   As I threw my hair up into its routine, boring pony tail hold, I pondered if its possibly time for a hairstyle change.  I hear the "big bang" look is really in for women these days, but I have mixed feelings about bangs.  While I've never really preferred them on me, I've also yet to wear them as thick and full as the new look requires.  Maybe I would like them like that?  But what if I don't?  Ugh, that's a lot of hair to try to re-grow and would require limitations throughout the outgrowth process (ie. bangs too long to leave down, so you always have to clip them up, wearing a ball cap to disguise the blunt, bi-level layers, etc.)

Anyways, I most guys like this look?  I've heard mixed reviews but I think on the whole, most man prefer long, natural and flowing locks sans bangs.  I'm curious to find the results to my little informal poll here.

What about for the women?  What do y'all think of the new "cool messy" haircuts sported by the likes of Robert Pattinson and Taylor Lautner?  Personally, I look at them and just wanna run my fingers all up in those lucious mane's of theirs'!   Hell, these guys were blessed with such amazing hair, they could practically rock any hairstyle and look amazing!  

Okay, let the tallying begin...

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Question of the Day: If your best friend who's single, moved across country, what advice would you give him/her for dating in their new city?

Today I have the privilege of being on my girlfriend's web show "Karith Foster:  America's Girlfriend" where I will give dating advice and tips to Karith, who recently moved all the way from New York City to Los Angeles.  Karith's move alone must've been traumatic enough in itself because, let's face it, comparing the two locales is like apples to oranges.  The emotional toll on such a drastic move is one thing, but then sprinkling a dose of dating in a strange, new city, is an altogether different one.

Karith is known for poking fun at herself for being single and makes claims such as, "Apparently I'm always single!" and now she must face the new challenge of being unattached and exploring her singlehood in a brand new and unfamiliar city.  When thinking about Karith's predicament, I imagine my life 10 years from now and as if it were my own daughter who found herself moving away to afar off place like, say Paris or Rome, and the advice I would possibly give to her about dating in her new city.

I could imagine saying, "Lilly, first and foremost, follow that undercurrent of excitement and adventure that drives you to explore your newfound place.  Let go of any demands of finding your soul mate right now, and just focus on yourself and what you would like to see and accomplish while you are there.  Go to museums, try new foods, meet new people, go online and find out the nighttime hotspots and allow yourself this time to be open and receptive to what comes your way."

Luckily, the invention of the Internet gives Karith a huge advantage for researching places, clubs, activities and local hotspots that appeal to her in L.A.  Furthermore, the Web doesn’t just let her research the places she will go, but the people that she'll meet.  I love online networking sites such as and Facebook, because they allow a person to meet and chat with potential neighbors that share similar interests, no matter where in the world they are.

The really awesome thing about coming to a new city is that you bring yourself along with you; and this time around you get to bring "the new you!"  By that I mean, you get to choose the part of you that you want to join you in your new adventures while leaving behind the old you that engaged in unserving, bad habits.  Dating in a new city, no doubt can be unsettling and daunting, but I would urge anybody to take their best with them, share it and live it out loud.  Heck, you were bold enough to make this big move, so might as well go forward with gusto and not be afraid to be unabashedly your new and improved self!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Question of the Day: When sick, do you prefer to be nursed back to health by a lover or left alone to convalesce?

I know a lot of people (eh hem...MEN!) who, when sick, feel the need to be nurtured and nursed back to health regardless of how they look or feel.  For me, this is a toughie.  I enjoy being catered to and taken care of as much as the next girl, but if its someone I'm newly dating and don't know very well I'm not so inclined.  It's completely too mortifying having him seeing me look and smell like road kill!  I mean, migod, heaven forbid that image gets permanently tatooed in his head!

But then again, remember the scene from "Fever Pitch" starring Drew Barrymore and Jimmy Fallon where they just started dating and she comes down with food poisoning and gets violently ill for two days?  Who wouldn't want a guy like that who sees you beyond your worse and everytime you open your eyes, he's at your beck and call?  I mean, hell, if someone could still be into you after holding your hair back while you puke and cleans up your snotty tissues, I'd say that's a pretty good sign!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Question of the Day: What is the SEXIEST (as in, makes you wanna get jiggy wit it) love song?

For me it used to be "Do Ya Think I'm Sexy" by Rod Stewart, with that raspy voice and famous dance strut.  But once hot 'n steamy crooner Lenny Kravitz entered the scene with "Again," all bets were off!  Who can't listen to that deliciously throaty voice and not get all hot 'n bothered?  But I got'sta give mad props to my girl Sade for giving me some incredible memories with, "No Ordinary Love." Good times.  Good times! 

Current day, however, I'm going with Alicia Keys' "Un-thinkable."  Yyyyyep, that song really does things for me!  Hmmm...thinkin' I'm needing to figure out how I'm gonna make some new memories with that one!  Holla!