So I signed up for a dating site. I’m not desperately seeking a significant other…. But I definitely enjoy the dating process and it’s an easy way to get to know new people. I live in a little fishbowl town and I don’t date townies. These people all know each other.


So the nice thing is that I get told I look like Ally Sheedy because of this picture, taken by my ex-husband. He’s a good photographer and he makes pretty babies. Thanks, dude! I do not look like Ally Sheedy at any other point in my life, but there are worse celebrities to be compared to.

ally sheedy

There are less fabulous aspects, however. Like the guy who literally demands personal, identifying information in the first 4 seconds I’m talking to him. Ummm…. Hey, why don’t I just tell you exactly the easiest way to break into my house and kill me while I sleep? I’m a single mom, moron. I live alone with a bunch of little kids. Let’s talk about Karen* (names have been changed to protect the unfortunate.) Karen is trusting. Karen spent three days locked in some wackadoo’s basement being assaulted. This is a person I know. That’s scary shit.


Fact is, if I want to date you, you are bigger than me. Ideally significantly bigger. This serves multiple purposes primarily that it makes me feel skinny, which is critical and it is way easier to rearrange furniture that way. It logically follows that you can probably overpower me. This has occurred on multiple occasions in my lifetime. Therefore, I need to be careful where and how I meet you. In fact, I find that if a man and I are mutually attracted to one another, there is at least a 70% chance that he is going to want to beat me up and steal my paycheck or lay on my couch for the rest of his life. It’s a nice couch.

When I am saying things like, locally…. Public place… coffee not drinks…. It’s because I still have three living brain cells and you have not yet convinced me that you aren’t a serial killer. Because, yeah, I’m lucky like that. Other helpful hints… don’t ask me to buy you stuff. Really? And I don’t actually owe you an explanation.


Also…for the wary…. I don’t share info about the dating game unless it’s especially egregious. Like Seven Hand Stan. Or the nutcake who wants me to shop for him. Please know….I absolutely want to be taken care of, but I don’t want your money. I want you to want to make my life better. Maybe by producing dinner (this can be ordering pizza without my help, I’m not picky) or hey, fix a broken thing for me. I have plenty.


Slut Shaming…. shame on you

Slut Shaming is the practice of making someone (usually a woman or a transgender person) feel inferior or shamed over their sex life, real or perceived. Basically, this is a basic scenario…. If a man and woman have casual sex, he’s a stud, she’s a slut. Whore. Skank. On and on. I’m writing about this today because a gentleman on my Facebook feed is having some sort of relational difficulties with a love interest who is apparently not as lily white as he’d like her to be, so she’s a fuckin’ whore. Charming.

sluts and studs

This is why when I am asked how many sexual partners I’ve had, my answer is not many. First, it’s none of your business, second no matter what I say, the asker will sit in judgment on my choices. If I had an outie instead of an innie, this would not be the case. Instead, I would be encouraged to put notches in my bedpost.


Maybe I want notches in my lipstick case. pat benetar

This is part of the rape culture we live in. We teach our daughters to avoid rape by wearing modest clothing, not getting drunk, avoiding dark alleyways and exercising caution. What we don’t really do is teach our sons that no means no, that a woman has the right to wear anything she chooses and it does not take away her right to decide what happens to her body. One in four women are raped. Only 3% of rapists ever serve any time.

rape stats

Fact is, no one has the right to dictate sexual rules to another person. This I’m a prude when I say no, a slut when I say yes business is garbage. Humans, like other mammals, are sexual beings. That does not put a woman under any obligation to adhere to your standards of sexual propriety. If it’s ok for a man….guess what? It is also ok for a woman.

I dated a guy who had a problem with my shoes. They were whore shoes…. All but the Timberlands and the sneakers. I mentioned that he liked them when we were dating and he actually said, “But it’s different if you are going to marry it.” I was it. I don’t enormously wish to be it. Personally, I think most people are too wrapped up in what people think of them. But I don’t want to be it. The fifties are calling and they’d like their morals back. Please join us in this century.



Paint me a Birmingham….

Today, I’m thinking about romance novels. Why do we read them? Are they a worthwhile effort? When we think of romances, we think bodice rippers with hot guys and chicks with impossibly small waists on the cover. Impractical, idealistic, unattainable, etc….

Those negative words are true. They’re also false. We’re talking fiction, people, nobody wants to read about the notice from the electric company or your bunions. Romance novels are fairy tales for adults…. You know it’s unrealistic, and you know that the really hot guy is not also intelligent, sensitive and good in bed. Take the hit, girls, it’s there and you know it.

Enjoy this picture of candles and roses:

candles and roses

Good fiction gives you the urge to suspend disbelief. I have favorites…. Nora Roberts, Jude Deveraux, Judith McNaught and Johanna Lindsey. These ladies have it going on…. Funny, heartwarming, entertaining and they give me a desire to suspend disbelief. My disbelief is in the idea that true love conquers all… At least romantic love. However…hope springs eternal. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t get a warm fuzzy from these novels. Yes…. it’s idealized, but it’s beautiful.

If you lose your shoes at midnight, you’re drunk. I stopped looking for prince charming years ago and began looking for Peter, Peter the Pumpkin Eater. In my everyday life, I am the biggest sceptic…. Men have taught me to be wary. The idea of a white knight is sexy. This is the only type of white knight that actually exists.

white night

Romance novels give us hope. They make us remember when we weren’t jaded, when we believed in happily ever after. That’s not a bad thing. Some people actually do get happily ever after. I’ve seen it. I’m living it…. It just doesn’t look like I thought it would. Because my happily ever after turned out to be freedom and autonomy. It does NOT include an empty bed… There’s a really cute kid and a couple of critters snoozing with me.
So, ladies…. Paint me a Birmingham. Make it look just the way I planned…. A little house on the edge of town…. Porch running all the way around…. Son, just where in this picture you would you like to be????? If there’s anyway that you can…. Can you paint me back into her arms again??????????????


In conclusion…. I conclude. Thank you, Mr. Jacobs. In all seriousness, romance is beautiful because it’s about the newness. Newness rocks. If your newness does not rock out loud, run for your life…. It isn’t going to get better.

Jude Deveraux official author website
Tracy Byrd… Paint me a Birmingham

Miss Shannon does not like infidelity.

Sooooo…. I went out on Halloween. I had far too much to drink and had to lecture a big, fat jerk on the sanctity of his marriage vows. After coming on hard and heavy for hours…. This guy told me he had been married to his soul mate for the last 19 years.

Honey, I am so sorry. For flirting with your husband, particularly since you were in the room. That your husband placed us both in an abominable position. That I know you suffer, because I have been in your shoes. Because I know you love the rat bastard anyway, and I have every faith that you deserve so much more.

Please know that I cared. I do not go out with men in relationships because I think it’s trashy. My stupid self usually has this wild idea that a man that is coming on hot and heavy does not have his wife in the room. I will never be the piece of trash riding ‘round in his pickup truck.

This is my sister and I on Halloween:
slutty halloween

Credit Ashton Shepard