Tuesday, January 27, 2009

A Review, a Guest Post and a Giveaway

It turns out that this week is the big Quarterly Bloggy Giveaways Carnival over at Bloggy Giveaways. Since I'd already posted this when I found out, I decided to jump in and modify this post to make it part of the Carnival. After you're done entering my little contest, head on over to Bloggy Giveaways and enter a few of the other contests and giveaways there!

Well, I'm back from Arizona with lots of tales and pictures to share. Hopefully I'll have time to start posting them this week. In the meantime, I thought I'd tell you a bit about a book I read recently, share a guest post from the author, and give you the opportunity to win the book.

The Review:

Perfect on Paper is a story about a twenty-something woman, recently left by her fiance and attempting to navigate the not-so-smooth dating waters of San Francisco. Waverly Bryson, the story’s heroine, is relate-able, sarcastic and ironic, and her dating mishaps and misfires keep you wondering if she’ll ever figure out that finding Mr. Perfect is less important than finding herself. Perfect on Paper was a quick-read with several laugh-out-loud (and quite a few cringe-worthy) moments. If you are now, or ever have, maneuvered through the dating scene, I'm sure you'll relate to Waverly's story in some way or another.

The Guest Post (from Maria Murnane):

I thought a guest post about dating would be appropriate. It's funny because now that I've written this book, people seem to think I'm an expert on dating, which is hardly true, given that I'm still single! Although I guess you could take that to mean that I'm really really good at uh, weeding out guys who are wrong for me...? Hmmm.

Anyhow, I have a ton of great (i.e. not great) dating stories that aren't in Perfect on Paper, and it's not just my female friends and I who have bad dates. So for a fun twist, here are three good (i.e. bad) ones from the male side:

1. Just the other day my friend Stu told me about a date his friend had recently been on with some woman. It was very new, not like they were "dating" or anything. I have no idea how this woman did this, but somehow she ordered her dinner TO GO and then told the guy that something had come up so she had to leave early. So she basically got this guy to buy her dinner without actually having dinner with him. Who does that??

2. My friend Greg asked a girl on a second date, for dinner on a Friday. She showed up with a small suitcase, expecting to spend the weekend with him. There's really not much more to say than that.

3. My friend Charlie has some CLASSIC stories that I will probably put into the sequel if I write them -- they are truly hard to believe. My favorite is this girl he dated twice, or maybe three times. She blew him off and said she was getting back together with her ex. Then about three months later he forwarded me an email from her that apologized for not having been "a good friend" and that she'd been "going through a hard time." The email was clearly a cut/paste job that she probably sent to everyone she knew - so classy. Then she went on to say that she had broken up with her boyfriend (who was apparently her meal ticket), and she now wanted to go to law school, so would Charlie be willing to lend her $1500 for an LSAT class? She would pay it back of course, and she'd be oh so grateful, of course. Uh, are you JOKING? Then at the end she finally personalized the email a little bit and she'd still like to date Charlie if he was interested. Nice touch honey. I'm surprised she didn't paste in the wrong name.

Those are just a few in a huge stack of many. I really do need to write a sequel to Perfect on Paper!

Maria Murnane, the author of Perfect on Paper, is currently an independent business writer and works mostly with technology and financial services companies, but like the main character in her book, she did spend a few years in sports PR. One day she quit her job and ended up in Argentina for a year, where she played semi-pro soccer and also wrote the first draft of what would eventually become Perfect on Paper. She has dedicated the book to any woman who has ever been on a really bad date or realized halfway through the workday that her skirt is on backwards.

The Giveaway:

Now here's your chance to win a copy of Perfect on Paper. Just share your worst (or best) dating horror story in the comments of this post by Tuesday, February 3rd at 11:59PM ET. Then I'll read all the horror stories, post my three favorites and let you all vote for the best (worst) one. The person with the most votes will win Perfect on Paper. I'll contact the winner via email (so make sure your email address is clearly visible in your profile or leave it in your comment). The winner will have 48 hours to respond with a mailing address so that I can ship the book. (US addresses only, please. Sorry to any internationals out there.)

I can't wait to read all your horror stories. In fact, I just might share my own this week. Boy do I have a few!

And if you're interested in learning more about Maria, visit Write Out Loud for an interview with her.


Angie Ledbetter said...

What a great sounding book. My 19-y.o. daughter would heart it. Such a cool contest too.

My worst (and only) blind date came in high school, where every little thing is mortifying even on a good day. For our Junior spring formal, a "friend" fixed me up with a friend of a friend so we could all go as a group.

Now, I was an Amazon even back then, so when a sawed-off 4'2" foreign exchange student walked in with a butt ugly coursage for me, I almost died. In hindsight, it was probaby a real good thing we couldn't bridge the language gap to speak. :) 30 years later, I'm still friends with the match maker, and we laugh about it now.

Scribbit said...

I can't remember how it happened but I ended up going out with a short Italian man who hardly spoke any English who drove me out to a lake and wanted to make out (ew) and when I told him I wanted to go home he ended up chasing me around the car for awhile thinking I meant "yes" instead of "no." He ended up taking me home but the evening was not a good one :)

Anonymous said...

My best date was when my husband asked me to marry him :)


Carrie said...

My best date was my 6-month dating anniversary date with my now husband, when he finally held my hand in public! He's Chinese and from a very non-demonstrative family, so that was a HUGE step for him.

jean said...

One of my best dates was when I won tickets to Monday Night Football. I, of course, took my boyfriend. We had a great time, and that date really solidified our relationship - thinge were different after that date, but in a good way...

mindy said...

the worst date was when i was taken to a local grocery because he did not have any in his area

Hannah Q. Parris said...

My worst date was in high school. We were at a Pops in the Park concert enjoying the music when my date asked if I would take a walk with him around a pretty pond nearby. It was all sweet and romantic until a goose came walking toward us. All the sudden, my date ran away and jumped up on top of a picnic table! He was totally scared of the goose, and he left me there to fend for myself! That was the end of that.

Unknown said...

my worst... I have a few! but here is a decent one.

I let a lady at the Chiropractic office set me up with her nephew. He was nice enough on the phone. so we set a date. Well in the meantime I was offered a job at the Chiropractic office. so I started work there. Didn't want to mix the date and working but felt bad that it was already set. So I went out with him. He had this HUGE yellow truck and was at least 6 inches shorter then me (obviously he is trying to make up for height with the truck) all night all he talked about was the fact that he makes so much and is a engineer. It was so BORING!

I went to work the next day and let her know I didn't enjoy it, she was so RELIEVED! she didn't want me to date him if I was going to work there either!!

karissag at gmail.com

Mia J. said...

One time mt good friend set me up with a friend of her boyfriends to go boating for the day. He showed up beet red from a sun burn and hungover. After a long ride to the boat we got on and he proceeded to tell me how wonderful he had been to his ex girlfriend and what a great guy he is and then promptly fell asleep. To say the least we never went out again.

Becky said...

I didn't really date, so I don't have any dating stories, but I enjoy other ones.

Melanie said...

No internationals? boo!

I don't have any good dating stories anyway... Been dating the husband for ever, basically. ;)

donnas said...

My worst was getting taken to the laundromat because he needed to do laundry.

GoneGirl said...

My worst date ever was when I went on a first date with a guy. All was going great...until he told me he loved me! On the first date! YIKES! Run, Forrest, Run!


donna and I must of known the same guy- except mine picked up bk on the way and said save it for the special place we are going then parked and pulled his laundry out

Grandma of 4 said...

My worst date was getting separated from my date at an outdoor concert and spending 3 hours trying to find him in thousands of people

Laurel said...

worst dating horror story?

how about the guy who kept telling me that he was all prepared to get engaged... he'd met my parents before, i loved his family, everything was going perfectly. then he came to visit my parents and decided after seeing their house for the first time that they had too much money. he dumped me pretty much on the spot.

A Reader said...

Worst date -- an internet date -- met at Cheesecake Factory and the guy had nothing to say and kept eying the waitresses. I couldn't wait to leave.
Thanks for the giveaway!


Unknown said...

My FIRST EVER date was a movie date with a boy named Richard. (I think I was about 13?) My mom & aunt drove me to the movie theatre but Richard (who was supposed to meet me in the lobby) was no where to be found. Well, I was crushed but my Aunt was determined to figure out what had happened. She talked the staff into allowing her into the theatre (a fully packed theatre) and then proceeded to shout "Is there a Richard Shipley in here???" Sure enough, he was in the back row with some friends. I was mortified, he was mortified, we barely spoke during the movie and I don't think I ever talked to him again. My aunt and I still laugh about the experience!
Thanks for the chance to win!

bryansgirl_1979 at hotmail dot com

K said...

Mine was kind of a blind date but I had seen a picture of him and had talked to him on the phone quite a bit before we met. He seemed like a nice guy and was really cute in his picture so we decided to go out on a double date with my cousin and one of his friends. They lived about an hour away so my cousin and I decided that we would meet at their house. When he opened the door he looked NOTHING like his picture. I still question whether that was him or not in the photo he sent me. We were going to play pool and I still figured that we could have fun. While at the pool hall he started to get upset because I wasn't falling all over him and then when we were leaving the guys both complained at the prices for ONE game of pool. We went back to their house after stopping at the liquor store and I desperately wanted to go home but my cousin liked her guy so I was trying to be polite and just hang out. My guy thought he was pretty hot and tried to boss me and my cousin around all night and continued to make sexist comments. Finally he came out with some old-man velour robe on over his speedo because for some strange reason he thought that we were all going to get in the hot tub. That was the end of it, my cousin finally decided that we had lived through enough torture and we left. I thought that he had gotten the hint, but he continued to call and couldn't understand why I didn't want to go out with him again even though I was very blunt in my explanation.

Sorry it's such a long story, but it really was miserable.

Thanks for the chance to win!

Anonymous said...

I had teh guy pick me up from work (I got ready in the staff bathroom). For the date he took ne to his house to watch movies..lame but I had an open mind. Well, HE didn't want to really watch the movies. After repeatedly fending off tentacles,I told him I wanted to leave. Well, he told me no. So I screamed "Take me to my car", and when his roommate came to see what was going on, he said fine. So after he dropped me off at my car, I made sure to drive around so he couldn't follow me home. Then I never answered his calls again.

Kelly said...

Ugh. I met this guy online (this was maybe 8, 9 years ago) and after chatting for a few weeks, we arranged to meet. I thought he was cute, so we agreed on a movie.

Well, he asked me to meet him in a public place (at a mall). No problem. The kicker? He was going to get food at the food court for his dinner and said that I could sit with him while he ate "if I wanted," or I could go get my own food. Uhhhhhhhh. Right. I chose to shop for 20 minutes. Great start already, huh?

So we went to the movie and he was just trying the whole time to touch me, hold my hand, rub my leg, etc. Perhaps here I should explain that he was a pre-med student and just thought he was the bee's knees. After the movie, he took me back to my car. He asked for a hug, so I went to give him a quick one, and he just grabbed me and held on for what seemed like an eternity (30 seconds, a minute, I don't know). I could just tell he was going to kiss me (or at least try), so I stepped back so I could reach my door handle, said "OW" really loud, pretended my ankle had twisted, and swiftly opened the door and "fell" into the car.

He asked me the next day if I wanted to come "spend the night" sometime. He was actually so full of himself that he thought there was no way I was disinterested! What a CREEP!!

krtrumpet [at] aol [dot] com

katy said...

Disclaimer: this has nothing to do with this post.

If you come for scrapbooking (which I'm REALLY hoping you will) would you kindly show me how to put the "my followers" thing on my blog?

Thank you kindly.

Becca said...

I am under 5 feet tall. My worst blind date was with a guy over 6 feet tall. He spend the WHOLE time commenting on my height. At the end of the date he said he couldn't even hug me goodbye because it was too awkward. *sigh*

AudreyO said...

My worst date was with a guy who spent the entire time talking about him, his job, his family, his....and then at the end of the date he said "wow I don't much about you at all" We never went out again.

shaunjoy said...

I had just moved to a new area and a guy invited me to what I believed to be a group event attending a concert. It ended up being a double date (!!) with the other guy being someone who had chased after my sister 10 years before. And all three of the others were really good friends with tons of inside jokes.

Let's just say it was really awkward and the poor guy gave up trying about half-way through the night. I felt terrible about my lack of interest...but I really, Really, REALLY wasn't interested!!

Alyce said...

My worst date was my Junior Prom. There was this boy that I had had a crush on for about a year, he knew I liked him, but just wanted to be friends. He moved about 100 miles away right before the prom, and I asked him if he wanted to go with me. He said yes, but just as friends. So I got my dress and my dad drove the hundred miles to pick him up, and he showed up in a suit from the goodwill (which I didn't really mind because I knew he couldn't afford a tux).

When we got to the prom he immediately found his best friend (who was a girl and a mutual friend of ours) and they started dancing. Throughout the evening he waved at me and said hi a few times, but he never danced with me. He spent the entire time dancing with his best "friend." They left together before the dance was over, and I hung out with my wonderful girlfriends who were kind enough not to comment on his absence.

That was the end of my crush on him, and we never spoke again. I have no idea how he got home, and at that point I really didn't care.

nicolehrb said...

My first date with my boyfriend...... we went to the local eagles where we both had a few drinks. Niether of us were going to drive home, so he called a cab. Great idea, right? well, I thought so too until the cab showed up and my boyfriend was to drunk and passed out, and I had no idea how to tell the cabdriver how to get back to his friends house where we were staying.

The cab ended up breaking down and we had to wait for another cab. While waiting for the other cab to show up my boyfriend woke up and was able to tell the cab driver where he lived.'

Even after all this, I went on another date with him, and 4 years later we are still together

Kathryn Magendie said...

My first blind date was a disaster - he didn't speak a word of english and was so excited to be "going out with an American girl" that he kept bouncing up and down....I was 18 and stupid and didn't recognize how special this date could have been, instead, i wasted time feeling "embarrassed" that he was so excited...

noreen said...

I was on a date and we were talking and I threw my hands on and then brought my hand down on his leg (very gently) and said "don't be silly." He jumped up and said "never hit me again." I swear it was barely a pat. Needless to say there was something in his past, and I never dated him again.

sushi_noem said...

My worst date wasn't really a date...it was after I'd broken up with my first boyfriend, and he offered me a ride home from school. He ended up taking me to the parking lot of a park and railing on me about how could I break up with him, we were supposed to get married, did I break up with him because he never kissed me, yada yada yada...wanted to get back together after he went psycho on me!

Ami said...

Thanks for all the great stories everyone! Stay tuned for the voting post later today where you'll have a chance to vote on your favorite story.

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