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My Dearest Jane,

I know you are no longer in the dating game, but I am, and I feel the need to commit to paper the things I have learned. As you know, it has been two years since my last emotional entanglement, and as a result I have been rather incautious. Although I ignored the shallow water signs, at least I went in feet first instead of diving right in. Feel free to pass along my swimming tips, and add your own thoughts

Rules for Swimming in the NYC Dating Pool

  • All swimmers get three strikes. Depending on your personality and the severity of your swim partner’s infraction, some actions may garner more than one strike.
  • Always meet in a public place.
  • Always tell someone where you are meeting, at what time, and with whom, and also check in periodically.
  • Be either early or on time, early is preferred.
  • If you feel you may be late, inform your swim partner as soon as you suspect as much
  • If you are late – apologize as soon as you arrive (if your swim partner is over fifteen minutes late you should consider leaving because obviously you and this swim session are not that important to this person)
  • Respond promptly to communications from your swim partner, and check your means of communication frequently starting 1-2 hours before your swim session in case something happens.
  • Do not make executive decisions for you and your swim partner, and if you do, do not assume your partner has agreed until you receive confirmation of them agreeing to your decision.
  • Do not spend the first ten minutes of your swim session texting/on your phone ignoring your swim partner
  • Do not people-watch out the window while your swim partner talks to you
  • Reciprocate
  • Keep your promises
  • Respect boundaries
  • Walk your swim partner to the door of the building and tell hir where the subway is, don’t just push the elevator button and disappear back into your apartment.
  • Do not argue with the uber/cab driver
  • Do not check out other people and ask the opinion of your swim partner
  • Do not refuse to assuage your partner’s fears and anxieties no matter what, but especially not if ze has respected your OCD tendencies.

And I could go on more, my dear, but I shall stop there. The one good thing I got from this first date in two years was a reinforced spine. I promise you right now, Jane, if a man earns three strikes I will fold up my napkin, if we have even gotten that far, thank him for his time, and leave. My time is worth more than that, and now I will happily wait another two years to find someone whose head is not buried in hir ass and actually gives a shit about my needs.

Empowered and single,

Libby