This week’s Interviewsday is a panel interview about love, dating and relationships with some of my favorite human beings:
The Best Friends: Shawn and Jess
The Parents: Doc Wad and Mama Bear
So if you’re looking for relationship advice from incredible weirdos, look no further friends. Enjoy:
How do you feel about Internet dating vs. traditional dating?
Doc Wad: It matters not how two find one another. The proof is in the giving.
Shawn: I think both forms are valid. Internet dating has serious advantages as it lets you screen people better. Sure, they may lie on their profile but if you’re careful and ask the right questions it can help a lot.
Mama Bear: It’s not easy, no matter how you do it.
Jess: I’m not a good judge on this one since I’ve never gone out on a traditional date. All the guys I’ve dated I’ve met on line which might make me a freak…I always seem to develop crushes on guys I’m friends with and there is that whole worrying about messing up the friendship thing. With internet dating I don’t owe this guy anything. I can tell him exactly what I am interested in and looking for and he can take it or leave it. Then we move on. Its less stressful.
Boyfriend: I can’t say I’ve ever dated on the Internet, but I’m not opposed to it. Internet dating has come a long way, dropping the stigma.
Shawn: Being on their phone, treating servers poorly. Talking about their exes or animals too much. If they haven’t at least heard of certain pieces from classic literature. If they like The Eagles or hate hip-hop.
Boyfriend: Giving the waiter shit, basically just not being nice to people they don’t have to be nice to. Also, If they’re not weird at all. Everyone’s a little weird, but if they’re like super crazy-ass normal, it’s a bad sign.
Jess: GET OFF YOUR PHONE!!! If you can’t have a beer with me without checking Facebook this is going no where.
What’s an ideal date?
Mama Bear: Whatever the two of you like to do together. Don’t try to impress each other or it will probably fail.
Boyfriend: If it’s not a first date; hiking in somewhere and camping for a few days. There’s not a lot of distraction around so you can get to know the other person. On a first date; I would want to take them to a cool spot that not everyone knows about, somewhere outdoors, and spend the time walking around and talking.
Jess: Something casual is always my style. Grab a beer at a brewery–I actually want to get to know a guy so don’t take me somewhere that has crazy loud music or we’re hanging out with a bunch of your random friends.
Shawn: Ideal date is a great conversation. It’s less important where it takes place. I like taking walks or going to museums as well. Art Museums are great because they force you to reveal more about your personality.
Doc Wad: Hiking, fishing, or other outdoor activity. One learns more about another without the stainless steel of modern life.
What’s the weirdest date you’ve ever been on?
Shawn: Sophomore prom when my date decided to leave me and go camping instead…during the dance.
Jess: I went on a date with this guy who was super into classic tractors. He showed me pictures of various tractors for easily 20 minutes before finding a photo he wanted to post on Facebook. He then proceeded to check his phone throughout the night to see all the comments and likes on said tractor photo…
Doc Wad: Spring-Winter date in Mountain View, CA. I was 18, she was 52. It was a great time*
Falling in love:
What is love? (Baby don’t hurt me, don’t hurt me, no more)
Shawn: Being vulnerable and completely open with someone. Placing their needs above yours simply because it’s what you feel. Love is loving yourself and being kind to yourself so that you can be the best version of yourself for that other person.
Doc Wad: Love is a physiological response to an emotional connection and a psychological choice.
Boyfriend: That’s a difficult question, something I’ve been trying to figure out for most of my life. You grow up watching Disney movies and you think you find this one, perfect person and you fall in love and it’s perfect. That’s bullshit. Love is being able to be comfortable with somebody, wanting to be around someone, getting to be your weird self with them.
Mama Bear: People smarter than me haven’t figured that one out yet!
How do you know when you’re in love?
Shawn: I’m scared to death but can’t help myself but jump. It’s a feeling. Probably involves black magic.
Mama Bear: When he’s the last thing you think of at night and the first thing in the morning. Even after 37 years, he’s still there in my thoughts most of the time.
What’s the story of your first kiss?
Doc Wad: Teenager. Neighbor girl with a willing practice partner.
Shawn: I was in the fourth grade and my “girlfriend” came over. Mom left us alone for maybe 15 mins and we kissed with completely closed mouths and moved our heads back and fourth just like the adults. My first real kiss was on my high school stage when I was in 8th grade. She was a sophomore and I had braces. Our teeth clicked and I didn’t really know what to do. I then got a nose bleed and she was very sweet about it.
Mama Bear: Awkward.
Shawn: Her name was Ellie and she was blonde. It was 2nd grade and she lost her Christmas ring. I tried my best to help her find it. She was all the boys favorite and I moved away before I could make a move.
Boyfriend: I had a lot of scenarios going through High School where I was really into a couple of girls but I never acted on it. I was kind of a chicken. They were usually older than me and cooler than me. I had a lot of crushes that I never had the courage to act on it.
Doc Wad: Neighbor girl. Walks in the rain.
What’s the most important thing you have learned from your significant other?
Mama Bear: To act like a kid and stay young. Sharing, caring, loving, listening, laughing, crying: just do it together.
Shawn: Things I’ve learned;
- You can always be a better listener
- Sometimes it’s okay to walk away from a fight and trust that the other person will still be there when you get back
- Boundaries are necessary and allow you to better care and love for one another
- Agree to disagree sometimes
- You can’t always fix it. Sometime it selfish to try.
- Remember the little things like their favorite food.
- Use the little things when they’re having a bad day.
- Sometimes you need to say things out loud even if they’re a given. (i.e. I love you, you are so intelligent, yes you are still the only one I want).
- Let them be who they are
- It’s okay to do nothing and just be in each other’s company
- Stand up for what you believe in. Loving means that you will still be there if I disagree.
Doc Wad: Patience
Boyfriend: That it’s ok to let things go. I’m a perfectionist, but sometimes it’s better to just do it instead of agonizing over it forever. You make it so I feel more ok with myself. I’m not exactly the person I want to be right now but it’s nice to have me love you for who I am. You make me feel proud of what I’ve done instead of ashamed of what I haven’t.**
What are your favorite or least favorite pet names?
Doc Wad: Chicken Chunks (favorite)***
Jess: Babe is alright with me and beautiful/handsome. When you get into sweetie and snookums, all that crap it is a little saccharin.
Boyfriend: I don’t really use them (this is a lie, he calls me sweetheart every morning). I don’t like honey, sweetheart’s pushing it a little bit (hmm, oh really?). I like beautiful, it’s a good descriptor. Babe’s a good funny one.
This was, by far, one of my favorite posts of all time to write. Who knew I knew such lovely and hilarious human beings?
So, who’s got some weird date, first kiss, love stories for the comments??
Best of luck!
*I did not know about this. What, Dad? WHAT.
**This made me cry actual tears
***This requires a story: in 2006-7, my father was interviewing for jobs. After a particularly trying family outing to go to one of his interviews, we were all tired and hangry. We stopped in to a drive-in, all of us ready to kill one another. Breaking the silence in the car, my father asked my mother what looked good. To which she replied “chicken chunks?” noting a weird item on the menu. Without a beat, he replied “yes, lover lumps?” Those names still get used.