Essay #2

This semester we covered a variety of topics in PUB101, such as design, online behavior, marketing, and monetizing your website. Our blogs were meant to be either personal, business oriented or informative and encouraged to be professional. I saw a lot of different ideas sprout up from others in the class; baking blogs, nature blogs, fashion blogs, even political blogs- a popular topic in class. I decided at the start of the semester to make a bold choice and put my personal life on the line: I would record and document my experience in the dating world of Vancouver, and post about it on my blog. I started this with a lot of confidence, but my first few posts ended up being about my reservations on the topic. I was anxious about putting myself out there and danced around the topic of even going back on Tinder and similar dating apps after past experiences and knowing how I usually react when trying to date people in this way. I persisted, and tried to design my blog in a feminine way, using bubbly fonts and pastel pinks. I even had a countdown to Valentine’s day, a day I had titled “Single’s Awareness Day” on my blog. I still had made no progress in putting myself out there in the Vancouver dating world, and was working on adding more and more things to my blog which contained almost no content. Meanwhile, fellow classmates were updating their sites with things they were passionate about, and I continued to put pressure on myself to put myself out there. I wanted my blog to be a humour blog for an audience of like-minded, witty women. I tried to appeal to these women by fitting to stereotypical female design elements. Meanwhile in my personal life, I was making no progress and still dealing with personal issues that were stopping me from moving forward with my love life.

During this period however I was offered a job by the marketing department at my work to run the social media outlets for the restaurants I worked at. I would be paid to update the Instagram, Facebook and Twitter for the pub I serve at and take part in marketing meetings. It was an extra push of motivation for me to get back on track with updating something regularly online. A two months into this course, shortly after Valentine’s day, I realized I wasn’t going to make any progress with my original blog idea. I decided to change my angle and turn my site into a humour blog about “adulting”, something I found myself doing a lot of all of a sudden. Romance went on the backburner and I was facing having to think about second jobs, moving out, getting over an ex, potentially hooking up with a different ex, watching my friends move away… it was becoming a lot to handle. I had installed google analytics on my newly refurbished blog but it wasn’t giving me a lot of hits. I was trying to write more about my personal life but I was still stressed out. This class had shown us a lot of different ways we can use social media to our advantages to market ourselves and gain followings and blog readers. While I was struggling to use these techniques on my blog due to commitment issues (funny enough, the same reason I couldn’t commit to all those relationship topics), I was able to use them for my marketing job. Instagram and Facebook have their own forms of analytics and though a small budget I was able to use these charts to expand the audience of people viewing the photos and advertisements through these accounts. I was receiving positive feedback though comments on my posts, as well as likes from regulars. The attention on the Facebook page grew, and by reaching out to breweries and locally sourced food companies in the online community, we were able to enter into an exchange of sorts. For example, I would mention Phillips beer as a feature I had, and they would retweet it, and then give my pub a shout out, thus widening our audience and putting us on the map for Phillips lovers.

At the beginning of this course I thought that publishing a blog would be easy- I would post about my fun dating life and share my posts on Facebook. I would be incredibly open about my career, sex life and personal feelings about everyone and everything that was happening in my world, day to day. But I discovered that without the proper marketing techniques, right connections and social media hook ups, your blog just disappears into the ether of unclaimed and abandoned sites. You need to share and tweet your posts, as well as network and comment on other people’s blogs. It’s more than just mysteriously scrolling your url in a public washroom and hoping someone will peak interest enough to spend .5 seconds on your site on their phone while they’re on the toilet. My education about the different types of publication has advanced a lot as well. I had no idea how much design and proper formatting could make a difference in your blog. Even the right font can grip people and give them that visual element to hold on to and draw them into your site.

I think that I will continue my personal blog after this semester is over. I just moved out of my parent’s house this last weekend, and the source of my holding back on new relationships is leaving my life forever come the end of this month, so a blog about adulting might be more relevant than ever now. I think I’ll finally have a chance to experience a really independent lifestyle, and I think without certain things holding me back it would be a good time to document. Before I start elaborating my online presence I want to be sure of the image I want to give off. I want to rethink how much I actually share on the internet and not list people and events as accurately as they occur in real life so as to leave some form of privacy. A friend of mine has a blog where she uses her full name as her url and posts the most personal things imaginable to it, a move I consider bold but also somewhat foolish at the risk of future employers or even lovers reading it and getting false perceptions. I’m not sure if I want to pursue an online life that closely. As for my marketing job, I want to improve with the amount of reach I get, and I’m going to continue reaching out to other local medias to do so. The comments I gather on the social media pages and the feedback I get from higher ups is encouraging and it makes me want to give back and comment more and participate on other sites in return. I hope to bring these traits over to my personal blog and move up from there. But first the adulting. Then the writing about it.

https://www.instagram.com/the_blackbirdbar/?hl=en

The Blackbird

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Above is a link to the website for the pub that I work at, and it gives a general look of the aesthetic the bar is going for, which I try to recreate in the Instagram, linked at the top.

Whereas below is a link to my own Instagram. So far all my posts of the year have been photos from my last vacation. I haven’t had a lot going on in my life lately that warrens a lot of posting, which also explains the absence of personal posts on my blog.

https://www.instagram.com/wallisbomb/

 

 

Things 15 Year Old Me Never Thought I’d Have To Deal With As An Adult

  • Figuring out which wifi network to join.
  • Watching your parents age.
  • Learning your parents are people with lives before you, and personalities that might not always fit your definition of “right”
  • Thinking about what life will be like after your parents die.
  • Co-ops.
  • Remembering to empty the recycling.
  • Dealing with people you love leaving you, and your feelings for them never being resolved.
  • Dealing with the fact that some people wake up at 80 at still aren’t happy and realize they’ve wasted all this time.
  • Remembering not to waste my time.
  • Scrambling for money.
  • Having to clean up someone’s puke with my hands at 12am because the bar back is busy and I spotted it first anyway.

Essay: I Want YOU! (to stop spreading fake news).

Incorporating a business into the world of social media can be challenging. The competition to grab the attention of people scrolling through their newsfeeds requires more than bright colours and click bait. Your content has to be relevant and easily accessible. But more importantly, your content should be something that people want to hear about. Otherwise the backlash can be staggering. Recently the Donnelly Group, an independent business based out of Vancouver that owns pubs such as the Bimini and the Lamplighter, made another shift in their business by purchasing the now closed Railway Club. The Railway Club had been a Vancouver staple since the 30s, but fell out of business after it’s last owner couldn’t keep it up. Then when he couldn’t see it they shut it down. When Vancouver local Jeff Donnelly decided to buy the club one would think enthusiasts would rejoice, right?

Wrong. Shortly after the news broke the CBC released an article interviewing partner Chad Cole on the future of the club, where in the interview he stated that “unfortunately [live music]’s not going to be a core element of this new pub.” The news of the Donnelly Group buying out the club spread like wildfire over Facebook and the comment sections of Georgia Straight articles and those done by Vancity Buzz were alive with internet rage. Comments ranged from “For most people The Railway Club is synonymous with live music…to bring the place back without live music is very disappointing” to “I’d rather tear it down than turn it into another generic vapid soulless chain bar. Not going” to calling out employees who work there: “…then the greasy, little floor manager comes over and says “how can I make this right for you?” What a joke”.

The anger was on. But despite the complaints of no live music, the article continued to explain that there would in fact be live music, just not as frequently as the venue had in the past. A follow up article was released emphasising that there would be at least four nights of live music a week due to the backlash. As for the “bad beer, worse food”, the Donnelly Group actually sources almost all of their beer and food locally, and is a proud supporter of local breweries and sponsor of Vancouver events. If any of the commenters had attempted to do the smallest bit of research into this new group that was reviving their so-called favourite establishment when nobody else would, they would learn all of this. This is the effect of social media news.

People have gotten used to bite sized pieces of information. Today things are limited to 140 characters, 7 second videos and status updates to express huge events in our lives. When our attention span has been trained to be so short, all we read is the headline. The drawback is that these headlines can be misleading and often don’t give people the correct information. Pre-conceived biases people hold can be triggered by a negative headline they don’t agree with or enlightened by one that they do. How many times have you “liked” or reacted to an article’s headline without clicking on the link? According to a survey by the Pew Research Center, 62% of U.S. adults get their news on social media. NPR reported that a Stanford survey conducted found that 80% of middle schoolers in 12 states couldn’t tell the difference between fake and real news. Based on the comments sections of certain Facebook articles, I’d wager that percentage would only be slightly less for adults. Fake news is effective because people believe what they want to believe. They want something to talk about, and when everyone has their own internet soapbox, it’s easy to yell your opinion into the void, however misinformed it may be. People see a title that supports their way of thinking and because it’s a “published” piece of writing, they cling on to that.

Publishing has changed now that Facebook is in play. In the Columbia Journalism Review’s article “Facebook is eating the world”, writer Emily Bell states “The future of publishing is being put into the hands of the few who control the destiny of the many.” Facebook’s power of news distribution is huge, and who can say what will and will not be published when people’s views of the truth have become so obscure, and even the president is spewing lies in national addresses. The technological powerhouses such as Google, Facebook and Apple have all started to dip their toes in the new industry, with Apple recently launching “Apple News” to add to the growing list of sources.

“When facts don’t work and voters don’t trust the media, everyone believes in their own truth.” claims Katharine Viner in her essay for the Guardian, published in July of last year. For a piece written over six months ago, the statements couldn’t be more true now. The world of publishing and how we receive and even accept our news is changing, and people blowing a restaurant chain out of proportion is just a small example. Incidents like #pizzagate that start off ridiculous and lead to shootings could just be the tip of the iceberg if people don’t start being more responsible for the news that they choose to regurgitate.

But the public doesn’t always believe they have time, or even consider looking deeper into the articles they’re being fed. In an attempt to stop the catcall of “fake news” and “alternative facts”, websites like Teen Vogue and Slate are attempting to educate their readers on how to spot false articles, with Slate even going so far as to create a Chrome extension that actually highlights articles on your newsfeed as possibly false if they come from uncredible sources. Despite this attempt, Slate’s headline for the announcement gives off the real message: “Only you can stop the spread of fake news.” The message is clear, and if people have a duty to themselves and to those around them to believe that the truth is not subjective when it comes to delivering facts. In the end, that’s what news media has always been and what we must fight to make it today.

Sources:

1. Bell, Emily. “Facebook is eating the world.” Columbia Journalism Review. March 7, 2017. http://www.cjr.org/analysis/facebook_and_media.php.
2. Colglazier, William. “The Best TIps for Spotting Fake News in the Age of Trump.” Teen Vogue. January 17, 2017. http://www.teenvogue.com/story/the-best-tips-for-spotting-fake-news-in-the-age-of-trump.
3. Domonoske, Camila. “Students have “dismaying” inhibility to tell fake news from real, study finds. .” NPR. November 23, 2016. http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2016/11/23/503129818/study-finds-students-have-dismaying-inability-to-tell-fake-news-from-real.
4. Gottfried, Jeffery, and Elisa Shearer. “News Use Across Social Media Platforms 2016.” Pew Research Center. May 26, 2016. http://www.journalism.org/2016/05/26/news-use-across-social-media-platforms-2016/.
Oremus, Will. “Only You Can Stop the Spread of Fake News. .” Slate. December 13, 2016. http://www.slate.com/articles/technology/technology/2016/12/introducing_this_is_fake_slate_s_tool_for_stopping_fake_news_on_facebook.html.
5. Viner, Katharine. “How technology disrupted the truth.” The Guardian. July 12, 2016. https://www.theguardian.com/media/2016/jul/12/how-technology-disrupted-the-truth.

Process Post: Revamping my image.

Since reading my 2nd peer review, a lot has changed in my life in relevance to adulting. I lost my glasses which is -1 adult point, but also found a place to live and move out to, which is +4. I got a minor raise at work for my social media use which is +2, but I haven’t been feeling very creative about it which is maybe a -0.5. A lot of changes are about to happen but one thing that has been supremely constant this whole semester, is that I haven’t had any relationship progress. I went on two dates with this guy I’d been seeing before I went travelling in 2016, and the first date was to check in and see where we were at. The second, was me trying to give him a hint that maybe this wasn’t for us. He’s in India right now and hasn’t texted me since that second date so I’m thinking he got the message.

In the mean time, I’m still where I’ve been since I started this whole thing. Serving at the pub, trying to do school work and blowing through a season of the West Wing every week and a half. And pining over my ex. Sort of.

They say never shit where you eat, but apparently I .love shit, because every relationship I’ve ever had has been with someone I’ve worked with. That’s three relationships, and three jobs. The first time he moved away. The second time he quit before we broke up. Now I’m not so lucky. My ex has worked for the group that owns our pub for five years. He’s got a hundred connections in the industry. I’ve worked here for just over a year and although I am moving up and getting my networking done, he’s a million steps ahead. Chances of him quitting any time soon are not likely. So I see him almost everyday, and it’s fine. We get along swimmingly, which is exactly the problem. The reason we broke up isn’t because we didn’t get along. It’s because we weren’t getting it on. Enough for him, in any case. When it first ended I did my whole play the victim thing, “Oh, how could we break up over such a dumb reason”. But the truth is, I hadn’t been feeling too attracted to him towards the end of it and had considered breaking up at times as well. But we were so in sync that I didn’t really want to try.

We’ve hooked up a handful of times since that initial breakup and now it’s been almost 7 months since our last one, but I still stay over at his house from time to time just to crash if I’m working late so I don’t have to take a $60 cab over the Alex Fraser back to where I live. In a month this won’t be an issue anymore because I’ll have moved closer to work than where even he lives, so no more “oh I missed the last train, mind if I crash?” excuses for me. I’m not in love with him. But I feel a lot of affection towards him still and I like being around him. When you work with someone like that, who you think also feels the same way but isn’t going to do anything about it, how are you supposed to move on? There are days when I think about quitting but for the most part I like my job and it’s perk and the $250 tip nights. Recently we had lunch and he talked to me about maybe moving to Toronto to work at the group’s expansion of pubs out there. I told him I didn’t think he should do it for a number of reasons, his schooling, his family, and how he’s told me numerous times he doesn’t want to work in the industry forever. But if he did move, wouldn’t it be easier? Of course I would miss him, but if he left then I wouldn’t have to see him all the time. I wouldn’t feel like I’m constantly torn between wanting to be with him and wanting to laugh this whole thing off. We only dated for six months, and they were great, but six months in is pretty early to not want to be having sex with your partner anymore. Isn’t it?

Regardless, it’s an issue I’m dealing with. Sometimes I tell myself I don’t care but the reality is that I get jealous so easily I can barely function and I need/want his attention all the time. Which I feel like is the equivalent of -100 adult points. So what I’m changing about my blog, for this process post, is it’s image. This isn’t a dating blog. It’s a personal blog. Despite my insistence that that personal blogs are crazy boring, I’ve already turned this into one and so by changing the design, the feel, and a little bit of my life anyway, I’ll steer it towards what it’s been all along. A blog about not-romancing. A blog about me.

Single’s Awareness Day

I’ve had this countdown on the front page of my blog for the past few weeks, counting down to Valentine’s Day, or as I sometimes call it, “Single’s awareness day”. Despite some bitterness over this title, I usually really enjoy valentine’s day. I like dressing up for it, looking cute, knowing that today more than others people are thinking about their significant other and maybe doing something special for them. This Valentine’s day however, was my first one in three years without a valentine.

I can remember my last three valentine’s exactly. Last year I was on Mt. Washington in Nanaimo with my then boyfriend, Elliott. He bought me snowboarding lessons for Valentine’s day and we had an overall pretty great time hanging out with him and his friends.

The year before I had just started seeing Nate, a guy I had classes with at Langara, and we were at my place hanging out and also doing edibles for the first time. Hella romantic.

The year prior was my first ever year with a Valentine- I was at my first boyfriend Keenan’s house and he made us dinner and then chocolate fondue. Super cheesy, and a very new type of Valentine’s day for me. Some shit went down that night that almost ended our relationship, but we worked it out and were together for almost a year, my longest relationship to date.

All three of my past relationships have started roughly around the same time. New year, new person to date. This year being the exception, I was a little mopey over the fact, although not as much as I would normally be considering I have a lot more going on right now in my life and it’s working as a pretty good distraction for the time being. Never the less, I made an angsty post on my Tumblr account.

Super mature.

I ended up making plans for the day with one of my best friends, Desiree. We hadn’t hung out in a little while and she didn’t have plans. So I headed over there around 4pm. She lives a few minutes away from Commercial Drive, one of my favourite neighbourhoods, and I listened to music as I turned right at the JJ Bean and headed up the hill to her house. On the front porch I knocked on the door as well as texted her, since she shares the house with several other people. Peering through the window, I saw something on the floor. The following ensued:


 

She had made me dinner and essentially covered the whole place in rose petals. Never in my life have I been so seduced, and here it is, plain as day, by my best friend. We ended up doing facemasks and watching this terrible 90s romcom called “The Wedding Date” which is a movie about a woman who hires a male escort to come with her to her sister’s wedding to make her ex-fiancee jealous. 10% on rotten tomatoes, but it was worth every second to me.

Desiree had seen my Tumblr post and decided to make the day go above and beyond for me. Just another example of how friends are the best thing in the world, and sometimes guys aren’t worth shit if you’ve got someone who will cook you steak and buy you piles of Nutella-To-Go for you to snack on. I love my friends and it definitely makes this whole “not in a relationship” thing worth it sometimes.

 

Why I love girls, why I’m backing off on Tinder, and my first Progress post all in one.

I’ve been putting a lot of pressure on myself to use Tinder lately for the following reasons:

  1. It’ll make this blog more entertaining. We’ve all seen “Tinder Nightmares”(they even got a book deal) and know how hilarious (and misogynistic), Tinder can be, and I’ve always felt that screen caps from Tinder would give the blog an easier-to-relate-to, easier-to-read format.
  2. It’s probably the best outlet I have for meeting new people right now.
  3. This super cute guy that I work with met his girlfriend on Tinder and now I, myself, am giving it some credit because if this girl can score a brilliant babe like (censored) on it then possibly, COULD I??

Now the reasons why I haven’t been doing so hot with the ol’ Tinder (excluding reasons mentioned in my latest post Swipe-xiety):

  1. I get this icky feeling inside talking to guys over the internet. It’s possible this is a psychological thing. I am not an overtly feminine person, but I have very few male friends. I have one male friend. I can’t help it, I just don’t talk to a lot of men on the daily! It’s not that I don’t trust men, it’s just that I feel so much more comfortable around women in my daily life. My thought process usually is as follows:

Me: *Sees an ordinary girl on the skytrain*: Look at her. She’s got such a cute outfit on! Where did she buy that jacket? I wonder what she’s listening to? She seems super cool and put together! I hope she has a really nice day!

*Sees an ordinary guy on the skytrain*: …………………..Nikes………………….Oh that girl over there has a really cute outfit!

You see the problem? I simply don’t care.

However the opposite comes if I see a really cute guy on the train:

Me: Lookatthatguyhe’sadorablewhatishereadingwhereishegoingdoeshehaveagirlfriendISHEGETTINGOFFATTHISSTOPohnofalsealarmhewasjuststreachingIwonderhowoldheisandwhathisfavouritemoviesareandifhehasadog…..

Even I don’t know what’s going on inside my head. I struggle to get myself to approach these guy because I’m still working on my confident and because of the NightmareSkytrainMan2015, which is a story that deserves a post all on it’s own. Regardless, the skytrain: not always the best place to meet people.

Not to sound completely horrible here but I think the reason I’ve struggled so much with having guy friends is that if I meet a guy I get along with enough I usually fall in love with him and ruin everything. I’m just more open around girls. I trust girls. A girl isn’t gonna date and make out with me for four months and then insist we’re just friends. She’s not gonna refuse to talk to me about what’s bothering her because she’s never learned to to talk about her emotions. She’s not gonna leave the toilet seat up.

I love my girlfriends- I relate to them, and they support me. Female friendships get a bad rep for being “dramatic” in a stereotypical sense, but the drama I’ve had with my girlfriends has luckily been kept to a minimum. My one guy friend, Lucas, is only the exception to this rule because despite being interesting, well travelled and conventionally attractive he is also sort of a horrible person and while I fully enjoy having him as a friend I could never date him knowing how he’s dealt with certain relationships in the past. So that’s a slight cheat to the problem.

I just feel way more comfortable dating people I’ve already met IRL. That way I already have my intuition to guide me on deciding whether or not this person is actually funny and interesting or if they just want to lure me back to their crusty basement apartment and get stoned. All of this ads up to a lot of mostly-unwarranted anxiety about using Tinder at all which leads me to reason number two of why I haven’t been doin’ so hot on the ol’ Tinder:

2. It makes me nervous and I’m lazy.

Another aspect of not knowing these guys in person is that I don’t feel all that inclined to talk to them. If I knew them in person not only would it put me under more pressure to reply to messages (I might run into them on the street! They could tell supposed mutual friends I’m ignoring them!), but it would also make me want to more. 

The lesson I learned this past week is that just because you make a blog post saying you’re going to start doing something, doesn’t necessarily mean you’re going to start doing it. For example, I was talking to my friend Alex the other day about how she lost all this weight by cutting gluten and dairy out of her diet (hellooooo Vancouver) and I said, “Y’know what? I’m gonna do that! I could lose some weight!” Cut to me waking up the next day and remembering how expensive and disgusting gluten-free bread is and how much I love cream cheese. Crisis averted. Next!

What I mean is that you shouldn’t force yourself to do something you don’t want to do, because it’ll make you miserable. You’ll get nervous and dread doing things you should look forward to, and find yourself crying over dairy free cream cheese. I want this blog to be about my dating life but to be completely honest my dating life is pretty mellow right now. I’m back in school and I’m still working full time, not to mention commuting almost three hours a day plus planning on moving out, plus I just started a new sport. Dating and welcoming new people into my life might be hard to squeeze in.

So I’ve decided to give myself a break on the Tinder regime. I’ll go back on again from time to time but it’s not going to be the only format on this blog. You might be reading some more personal stuff, stories about past dates and relationships as well as hopefully future ones. It’s already making me more eager to post more than once a week. And who knows, hopefully I’ll find a few matches in the real world as well as the online one for once as well.

Swipe-xiety

I’ve re-downloaded Tinder. I’ve set up my account. I’m revisiting my old friend: swipe-xiety.

Swipe-xiety is one of the reasons I could never commit to Tinder in the first place. It would always be there, nestled close to my heart every time I even considered swiping right. It’s the feeling that I owe something to the person I’m matching with.

I’m aware that this is a perfectly fixable problem. I don’t owe this person anything! I’ve never even spoken to them before! How can they expect anything of me? All these feelings mixed with the fact that I have a crippling need to not let anyone down ever. And by doing what I often (or used to often) do on Tinder, ignore everyone, I feel like I’m doing just that.

I imagine them at home, miserable, in a basement apartment surrounded by textbooks and empty cans of Dr. Pepper. Suddenly- my face! A bright light in the darkness of their 20-something lonely, gym sock scented despair. They swipe right… it’s a match!! They’re elated! Finally, a girl cute and committed enough to launch them into enough motivation to quit their jobs at Chipotle and get back on the market goal wise! They send an eager first text, perfectly summarizing all their hopes and dreams for our relationship together:

“Hey”

They wait. A few minutes pass. They go to the washroom. They check their phone again. Still no response. A shiver of doubt crawls up their bony, malnourished spines. They unwrap a dinner of hot pockets and while it’s in the microwave they check again. Still nothing. They spend three hours playing counterstrike online and spend $40 real-life dollars on a skin for their completely fake combat gear. Another check. Still nothing.

Slowly, realization dawns on them that a girl like me, glowing, golden goddess that I am, could never go for a pale, go-to-the-gym-once-every-two-weeks, hot pocket filled, Douglas Kinesiology student like themselves. They’re devastated. They spend the next two days without sleep, watching video game walkthroughs on Youtube and living off Dominos. I’ve failed these men. I’ve let them return to the crippling, vitamin D deprived lives they’ve been leading. This is what I’m afraid of.

In reality I’m pretty sure all guys swipe right to every girl on Tinder to increase their matches and couldn’t pick me out of a lineup of Vancouver Film Girls if there was a neon sign over my head that said “DREAM GIRL”.

But you get my point.

So while swiping most recently I’ve been fighting it. My swipe-xiety. I’m pushing it down, down, away from my heart in to my stomach where it’ll burn up by all the acid and gunk down there. I don’t owe these guys anything. I am getting matches. I don’t have to talk to them or meet them IRL if I don’t want to. I am a stone cold bitch. I am a contender. I am not going out with anyone who eats hot pockets. I am going to get over this.

Hesitations

So it’s been about a week and I haven’t updated once. This isn’t because I haven’t thought about it. I’ve drafted posts and mapped out polls and ideas for the coming semester. But I haven’t fully committed to the cause. When I was brainstorming ideas for this blog I started with the superficial: what do I like? What kind of music and movies can I indulge in through this website? How can I write about my day to day life? These topics are easy to write about. It would be no problem to sit down at the end of my day and spit out a few words on the latest film I saw or album I listened to, or to give out a few words over what I had for lunch. But I wanted to write about something that would be interesting. And so far, that’s not my life.

This topic is a little harder to tackle for me because I’m not very outspoken and blogging about my dating life doesn’t come naturally to me. But that’s why it’s worth writing about and that’s why it’s worth tackling. So starting right now I’m taking it a little less seriously. I’m gonna do it for the experience and for the fun of it all.

Personally, I have a really hard time being attracted to people I don’t know, which is why Tinder and Bumble and just face-based apps don’t appeal to me as much. It’s the kind of thing I would download and flip through to see if there’s anyone online that I recognize, and then I might match with someone. But the second that happens I get scared/intimidated/feel-like-I-owe-them-something which is all irrational and shouldn’t be true. So I’m taking things “less seriously”. Which is not easy for me, because I’m the kind of person who cares too much about everything. So I guess now’s the time to rip off the bandaid and get messy? Or some other kind of weird “go get ’em!” metaphor? But I’m ready now. I’m settling in. Reject me! I’m ready! I don’t care anymore!

Single and ready to sort of mingle…

As most people living in Vancouver know, we don’t exactly have the best reputation for dating. Vancouverites have the sterotype of being distant, anti social and cliquish. It’s pretty easy to point out a person on the street and put them into a classic city stereotype: Yaletown yuppies, Commercial Drive hippies and Kitsilano beach bums just to name a few. It’s easy to spot a Vancouver Art Student from a mile away- just look for the long black coat, Doc Martens or Blundstones, and the signature Fjallraven backpack. In a city of people so synced to fit in, it’s hard to get outside of your comfort zone. It’s hard to get out there when everyone around is always moving. Head down. Headphones in. Black umbrellas everywhere.

But not anymore.

Despite being cliche I’m a pretty big fan of the whole “new year new me” mantra and 2017 is no exception. This year I’ve vowed to finally put myself out there. I’ve been single for almost seven months and I’m ready to move forward. Never in my romantic history have I “dated casually”. That is, dating without the searing end goal of a long-term relationship. I’ve never really dated around or “just had fun” either, for a myriad of reasons which I’ll go into in a later post. But hey, things are different now. I’m twenty one, back in school and relatively employed. I’m outspoken and ready to crush that crippling anxiety I get in my gut every time a guy asks me to “hang out” (more on that later as well). I’m ready to re-download all those horrible apps and actually swipe right for once.

The purpose of this blog isn’t necessarily a relationship(although that would be nice), but a chance to see what it’s like on the other side and to give more people a chance. I’ll be documenting my experiences with recaps, screenshots and maybe the occasional vlog. Hopefully if not resulting in romantic prospects it’ll at least give us all a good laugh.