Let’s Play the Text Game

Most days, I consider myself a confident lady. Other days, I’m more of what I like to call “an absolute wreck of a human.” Sometimes, on very rare occasions, I can be both at the exact same time. And that rare moment actually caught me by surprise yesterday.

It started when one of my favorite gal pals was agonizing over whether she should text a guy first. They had a great weekend together, he had mentioned having dinner the following week and now she wanted to follow up. But he hadn’t texted in a few days and she was afraid that he had either lost interest or would “scare him off.” They’re silly thoughts, but ones that all of us tend to have. So, of course, my advice to her was to text the goober. I told her to be bold and go after what she wanted. After a few more excuses on her part (the possibility of rejection is SCARY, okay!), she relented and texted him later that night. And wouldn’t you know, he had been thinking about her, too. Their dinner has been formally scheduled.

While I was GChatting her off the ledge of #foreveralone, I was having my very own crisis. The problem was pretty much the same. Do I text the guy first? However, the terms were completely different. Dude and I hadn’t spoken in five months. Things had gotten awkward between us. And I kept questioning if this was really the right time to tear down that Berlin Wall. So, with the helpful nudging of a different favorite gal pal, I went for it. It should be said that I got ridiculously worked up about this. I immediately regretted that I couldn’t blame my decision on alcohol. I couldn’t bear to look at my phone in the case that the response (or lack thereof) would be less than desirable. I went as far as starting a video chat with my aforementioned friend so she could look at my phone screen and tell me whether I should be freaking out or not. Seriously, I was behaving like someone who needed their meds adjusted.

You see, confident while advising friends. Absolute wreck advising myself. But as I stand smack in the middle of sane and psychotic, I always manage to learn something. In this particular instance it was that the millennial “text game” is pretty damn stupid. You want to talk to someone? Just fucking do it. Don’t agonize about what they’re thinking. Don’t act disinterested to protect yourself. If they don’t respond or don’t reciprocate your feelings, you’ll find a way to move on. Don’t let the “do I text them first?” question plague you.

Dicknotized: 12 Steps to Getting Over Your Addiction to “the D”

We all suffer from an addiction to SOMETHING. Alcohol, money, Katy Perry music videos, drugs, exercise, throwing shade, power, etc. But my personal affliction and those of many other gals is an addiction to “the D.” Akin to “putting the pussy on a pedestal,” our thirst for male companionship is oh-so real. So, I’ve adapted the popular 12 steps of addiction for all those aDICKted ladies.

1. Admit you are powerless over “the D.” Your thirst has become unmanageable, embarrassing and a detriment to living a shame-free life.

2. Come to believe that a “Power” greater than yourself (usually Oprah) can restore you to sanity and steer you to the land of eternal hydration.

3. Make a decision to turn your will and life over to the care of “God.” Or, you know, whatever deity you so choose. Again, the gospel of Oprah is here for you.

4. Make a searching and fearless moral inventory. Otherwise known as going through your memory bank and thinking of all the times you shame spiraled after a sexual encounter gone bad.

5. Admit to yourself and to others (usually your poor friends that can’t find you at the bar because you went off chasing some random) the nature of your wrongs.

6. Be ready to remove this defect of character. Maybe don’t respond to that 2 a.m. DTF text message. Don’t pound Fireball shots when you’re emotionally fragile. Don’t go chasing waterfalls.

7. Humbly ask “Her” to remove your shortcomings. If Oprah attempted to fix Lindsay Lohan’s hot mess of a life, she can surely do the same for you, right?

8. Make a list of all persons you have harmed and become willing to amend them all. This includes all the friends you ditched to bang one out with your slam piece, all the dudes you never texted back and your gynecologist, who really shouldn’t have such a consistent patient.

9. Make direct amends to such people wherever possible. There is never a bad place to apologize for your parched behavior. Make like Nike and JUST DO IT.

10. Continue to take personal inventory and admit when you’re wrong. We all slip up. I mean, you might go back to your ex-hookup that knew how to put in work. Or you’ll mercilessly tease that guy friend you randomly slept with for not putting in enough. Just admit your wrongdoing(s).

11. Seek through prayer and meditation to improve your conscious contact with “God.” Should prayer, meditation or marathoning The Oprah Winfrey Show not prove effective in curbing your addiction, masturbation might also work.

12. Carry this message to others that suffer from this affliction. Preach it loud. Preach it proud.

Are You Gonna Write About Me?

If you’re dating, sexing, casually talking to, accidentally looking at or breathing in the general direction of a writer, odds are… they’re gonna write about you. And they’ll either record your encounter in painstaking detail or compose a fictionalized version of you. Regardless, you’re gonna get put in print. It’s a fact of life. We don’t mean to, but more often than not, we write what we know.

So ever since I became a little less shameless and decided to publicize my life on the Internet, I often get the question, “are you gonna write about me?” Usually, this is asked by someone that is ABOUT to do something incredibly shady or just has. What I’ve learned is that people love to see themselves in the spotlight. Whether it’s positive or negative coverage, they have no fucks left to give as long as they’re being written about.

Lately, however, I’ve been getting confronted by the people I’ve ALREADY written about. The ones I never thought I would see again. Which, my fucking bad. Because Miami is literally the size of my abuela’s house and everyone knows everyone’s business. Also, I legit hang out at the same three places, so I don’t know why on Beyoncé’s green earth I thought I’d be in the clear. So, instead of “are you gonna write about me?” it’s slowly morphed into, “so… you wrote about me.” The question is then followed by an ever-so-brief moment of embarrassment, which is mostly just me acting painfully awkward and the other person thinking they deserve an explanation. Honestly, what am I supposed to say? “You acted a damn fool and it was my duty to put you on blast.” Actually, I should TOTALLY be saying that instead of responding with a half-hearted shoulder shrug.

As much as I hate to admit it, I fancy myself as a literary Taylor Swift. Someone with an insatiable need to write about their long list of ex-lovers (see: not that long at all, actually). So, consider this my final declaration on the subject. YES, I’m going to write about you. YES, I did write about you. BUT, you’re in great company. Jake Gyllenhaal, John Mayer and Harry Styles have been written about, too.

 

And That, My Friend, Is What They Call Closure

I’ve never been a big fan of unfinished business. But on the flip, I also despise confrontation. So, it’s an internal struggle of epic proportions when someone ~wrongs me~ and I’m left to decide what to do. Usually, I make like Frozen and let it go. I seethe for a hot minute and then just ignore whatever happened for as long as humanly possible. I’ll write them a letter and never send it, instead opting to throw it in the ocean in a real dramatic gesture. Or I’ll make passive aggressive comments about them, because that’s also a totally healthy and mature way to handle things.

But something changed for me recently. Come February, it was no holds barred. Maybe I listened to “I Don’t Fuck With You” one too many times. Maybe becoming another year older made me care less. Maybe I suffered a minor brain aneurysm. Whatever it was, it had me setting out for closure from situations that were weighing me down. Finally, I had the ovaries to say what was bothering me. And once I did, it made me realize that I should’ve been putting people on blast FOR YEARS. Instead of tormenting myself wondering why things always go wrong, I should’ve simply acted like a grown woman. What a concept!

Some people don’t care much for closure, but I’m just not one of those people. I probably have an unnecessarily optimistic view about the entire thing, actually. As if closure is this magical cure to hurt feelings. It might be because I don’t see it as a close; I rather see it as a continuance. A second chance at making something right between two people. Or at the very least, just making things right with myself.

The “Above All Else” List. AKA My Relationship Must-Haves.

I think about relationships a lot. It’s a sickness, really. So naturally, I recently got to pondering what I need above all else in a relationship. Those must-haves in a partner that help you decide whether you want to continue a union or not. Consider it the “what you got” that will make me “fuck with you.” And while a few years ago I would’ve ranked “great job” and “good family” pretty highly, now I wonder if they’re seriously THAT important to me. Sure, they matter, but are they worth more to me than “makes me feel comfortable” and “makes me laugh to the point of tears”? So, I decided to create my “above all else” list, the things that I simply cannot live without when it comes to making U + ME an US.

1. COMFORT

To me, comfort means more than just the freedom to “be yourself” (as I’ve never really had an issue with that). It means hanging out with someone with absolutely no frills. Someone that I don’t even have to put makeup on for. Where farting and burping and other bodily functions don’t phase them, no matter how long you’ve been seeing each other. Basically, there’s just absolutely no bullshit going on. They accept you wholeheartedly, no matter how many quirks you possess.

2. LOVE ON TOP

Beyoncé sang about it for a reason. I never want to be the girl that whines for attention. Or pleads with you to stay in for the night. But if you forego drinks with ~the boys~ to watch a Law & Order: SVU rerun with me, that certainly speaks volumes. It also shows your commitment to Detective Olivia Benson, which is obviously another plus.

3. AMBITION

You don’t have to have the best job, you just have to be the best at it. You gotta take a page from the book of Rick Ross and hustle every damn day. You’re the BAWSE of your destiny.

4. HUMOR

I know this is a pretty obvious one. Like, who wants to be with someone that doesn’t like laughter and happiness? But NOT having a sense of humor is an absolute deal breaker for me. Nothing is more attractive than someone that’s clever and willing to laugh at themselves/make light of serious situations. Bonus points for finding me super hilarious, too.

5. AGREEABLE

No, not being a doormat. I can buy one of those at Target. But someone that doesn’t constantly feel the need to fight me on everything. Willing to compromise, never makes a big muss or fuss. Oh, and someone that can chill me the fuck out, because I’m as high-strung as they come.

6. POP CULTURE SAVVY

I’m pretty obsessed with pop culture, so anyone that understands my obscure television/movie/music references is baby daddy status. And, as I am NOT of the school of thought that opposites attract, those that don’t fit this bill are oftentimes (see: always) dismissed.

7. CAN THROW DOWN

Women have needs y’all, so sexual compatibility/attraction is a MUST. Homegirl over here needs someone that’s gonna put in work. EVERY. DAMN. TIME.

Turning 28. Or How I Threw Myself a Quinces to Relive My Youth

As I approach my 28th birthday and inch closer and closer to 30, I can’t help but feel nostalgic for my youth. Usually, when this happens (which is coincidentally when I’m about to become another year older), I take a hard stop and focus on my life in 2002. My freshman year of high school was in full swing. I was crushing it on the social front. Justin Timberlake released his first solo album, which I effectively cried many rivers over. Eminem came out with 8 Mile, inspiring a defense mechanism I still use today (pointing out my own flaws before haters can do so first) and…. turning 15. Yes, that beautiful age where every Cuban girl gets her first acrylic manicure, picks out the biggest tiara she can find, throws on a massive pastel colored dress and has herself a Quinceañera.

While I do have photographic evidence of myself wearing a gown, sporting blinged out headgear and rocking gaudy nails, I unfortunately did not have a traditional Quinces fiesta. No court of 14 guys and gals. No choreographed dancing to Chayanne’s “Tiempo de Vals.” No candle lighting ceremony. No magnificent banquet hall entrance. I did, however, have a bangin’ surprise birthday party that was pretty much the social event of the school year. It was in a fancy backyard (fancy = having a pool). There was a hired DJ that played Jagged Edge and Blu Cantrell’s finest. There was tons of mature slow dancing. And almost my entire 9th grade class was there. Oh, except for my crush who was actually in the 8th grade. Because apparently that’s what Lourdes of yesteryear was into. ANYHOW, the point of all of this is that I always wanted the full-blown Quinces experience. So, upon approaching the big 2-8, I thought this would be a good a time as any to cling to the last of my 20s and do just that.

I emailed my favorite bar, reserved some space, invited 70 of my closest friends and demanded that everyone glam up for the sequel to the most important birthday that I never executed properly. And it was pretty damn phenomenal. Probably (no, definitely) better than anything I could’ve pulled off at 15. I was bought a Justin Bieber piñata, which I smashed to bits with a stiletto. Pastelitos and pan con mantequilla were my snacks of choice. My chosen “recuerdo” were mints that said “Mis Quince Años.” And I should really be Disney’s first Latina princess because my Goodwill gown, pearls, white gloves and tiara were ON POINT. It reminded me that getting older after 25 isn’t a yearly death sentence. It’s something that should be celebrated in the most elaborate of ways. All in all, it was the absolute perfect way to kick off 28. Lord knows that 2002 needed a break from the memory bank.

De niña
De niña…

 

a mujer
…a mujer.

I Don’t Practice Santeria… But I Went to Someone That Does

As much as I try to be a totally practical and sane human being, the notion evades me. Like… all the time. Things not going well at work? I’M GONNA GET FIRED. Nothing popping off in the love department? MY VAGINA IS HAUNTED. Friend doesn’t immediately answer my text? THE BITCH HATES ME. So, in order to cope with these completely inane scenarios, I started listening to more than my fair share of Adele music. You know, just to help me chill the fuck out. However, that eventually stopped working. And instead of taking up Sam Smith, I decided to do the most Cuban thing possible. I went and sought the counsel of a Santera.

I had my apprehensions, OBVIOUSLY. I’m a big believer in all things spiritual, so last thing I wanted to do was go there and inadvertently piss off los santos and whatnot. But, I decided to go into this experience with an open mind, an open heart… and my mom. Because YOU SWEAR that I was doing that ish by myself. Throughout the process, I received a lot of answers. Some that I wanted, some that I didn’t expect. Regardless, they were ones that would help me make better choices moving forward. Or maybe less ratchet choices, to be honest.

Throughout that first session, I was definitely feeling some type of way. I cried when she gave me that real talk about my lackluster love life, my career, my future. It would all work out, she said. But first, I had to get out from under the cloud of negativity that seemed to constantly rain on my parade. In order to do so, I was advised to go through a “spiritual cleanse” at a second session. So, I returned a few days later thinking she would sprinkle some holy water on me, say a little prayer, and I would be good to go. Unfortunately, it was a little more complicated than that. And while I don’t want to divulge the details of what exactly went down, suffice it to say that…. it worked. Or, at least I feel like it did.

Sure, now that things are on the up and up, it’s easy for me to say the Santera fixed everything. Maybe she did, maybe she didn’t. It could just be that I decided to take a different approach when it came to my own damn life, but I like to think that the spirits had SOMETHING to do with it. They were finally on my freaking side, and I was going to celebrate that. Because there must be a reason for all of my positive Walter Mercado horoscopes lately, right?

The New Top Five

We all have a top five. You know, that list of celebrities that your significant other would “give you a pass” to sleep with. Or, if you’re a singleton, just five celebrities that get your lady or man bits tingling. And while my top five has changed significantly throughout the years (previous spots have been filled by the likes of Shia LaBeef, Mark Wahlberg in Fear, Chris Noth, Ryan Lochte during the Olympics, Jake Gyllenhaal and Matthew Fox circa LOST), two gents have always filled two of the coveted spots – Ryan Gosling and Justin Timberlake. What can I say, The Mickey Mouse Club just did it for me. But, it’s time that I face the music and realize that I’ll never be able to compete with gals like Eva Mendes and Jessica Biel. So, I’ve decided to come up with a new and improved top five filled with celebrity candidates that I would possibly? maybe? have a chance with.

Behold, the famous men I actually think I could snag:

1. Pitbull

If only for that time that I saw him in front La Carreta on Bird Road when the Miami Heat won the 2006 NBA Championship. As someone that has been described as “the most Miami person you will ever meet,” shouldn’t I include the most Miami man of all time in my list? Plus, he wears pastel color suits LIKE. A. BOSS.

2. Lil’ Wayne

First of all, he needs to add a Latin baby moms to his roster. Second, I can certainly help ease him through this painful break-up with Birdman/Cash Money Records. And finally, that guy drips swag. Whatever, I get it, HE HAS FACE TATTOOS. And he dissed LeBron and Wade that one time. And he’s awkwardly obsessed with skateboarding all of a sudden. But he invented “drop it like it’s hot” and “bling bling,” and for that, he’ll get broken off a piece of this Kit-Kat bar.

3. Ed Sheeran

That ginger hair. That British accent. THAT VOICE. He is ugly as sin, but there are no fucks given over here. His talent more than outweighs the physical. Plus, being with him is a one-way ticket to a best friendship with Taylor Swift.

4. Bruno Mars

The tiniest of nuggets, he is precious beyond words. Tell me you haven’t wept at the glory that is “Uptown Funk” or “Locked Out of Heaven” or “Treasure.” If you said you haven’t, then…. you’re tacky and I hate you. His talent is so strong, I simply can’t control my urges. Please don’t judge me.

5. Aziz Ansari

He’s besties with Kanye West. Inspired me to go see R. Kelly in concert (beyond my own need to watch Kells perform ” I Believe I Can Fly” live). And gave everyone the excuse to treat themselves. Oh, and he’s fucking hysterical to boot. We’d make some really ethnically diverse and unique looking babies, so this is a union that kinda sorta needs to happen.

My Favorite Miami Bars & Lounges (That Cause Me to Make Poor Life Choices)

LourD at BroJs.

Brother Jimmy’s

My very essence has become so synonymous with this place that it’s kind of sad, really. I’ve had some highs. Like slaying at impromptu flip cup games, killing it in karaoke, becoming besties with some of the employees and watching the bouncer body slam someone that got out of line. But there’s been lows, too. Like witnessing some epic douchebaggery, having my feet practically bleed on Cinco de Drinko due to a very poor shoe game, random acts of crying and unpleasant bathroom visits. But, through it all, this will forever remain a mainstay. Bad experiences be damned.

Blackbird Ordinary

My dubious behavior at Blackbird has been well documented, so it should come as no surprise that it’s included in this list. A friend once dubbed it “black hole,” because that’s what your life feels like after a night of drinking there. Of course, I immediately co-signed that sentiment. Basically, nothing good ever happens to me at Blackbird after 2 a.m. I’ve attacked people with my mouth, participated in numerous dance-offs, had one too many #realtalks in the women’s bathroom and fallen for some OH SO STUPID pick-up techniques. But I’ll still continue ending many an evening there. Sorry that I’m not sorry.

Fado

This one is really just due to the close proximity to Blackbird and Brother Jimmy’s. It’s almost as if by osmosis that I’m compelled to act a fool. Almost every single time that I saunter into Fado I transform into the Hispanic version of Lil’ Jon and start demanding shots. It should be stated that shots aren’t simply my downfall, they are my LIFE RUINER. Multiple rounds of Fireball should never be trusted, much less accepted. Also, I don’t appreciate the fact that I have to safely descend a full flight of stairs in order to get to my next destination. Especially since I look like a newborn baby elephant when trying to achieve that feat. Seriously, a bar on a second floor? NO. ME. GUSTA.

Purdy Lounge

Dirty Purdy, how I love dropping it low within your musty walls. If my vagina isn’t touching the floor at all times, it hasn’t been a successful evening at this particularly ratchet establishment. Once upon a time, I would straight up act like The Terminator up in this piece. Set my sights on a target and simply attack. I’d like to think that I’ve grown wiser and classier with age, but it’s probably just because everyone that now comes here is a fetus, and cradle robbing has never really been my style.

Radio Lounge

The first time I ever set foot inside Radio Lounge, I made a beeline for the pool table. No, not to play, but to dance on top of it. I had a good run before they escorted me off. Plus, someone made it drizzle some dolla dolla bills on me. From that moment on, it became a tradition of sorts to have me dancing on top of that thing. Cue the first few notes of any 2 Chainz song and there I went. But, Radio Lounge has suffered some changes. The last time I went it was filled with a crowd that made me sad to be alive. Instead of a DJ, I got someone playing music from their computer (which is kinda what DJs are anyhow, but whatever). And that beautiful elevated surface that I used to call my very own was now covered and certainly off limits. It’s so hard to say goodbye to yesterday.

A Single Shade of Gray

The wise Charlamagne Tha God once said, “if you smash a girl three times, you’re in a relationship.” To me, truer words had never been spoken. Obviously, not a relationship in the traditional sense, but SOME sort of union. Whether you want to define it as “hanging out,” “talking,” “hooking up” or whatever other term millennials throw around to describe what or who they’re doing, you’re bound by the rule of three. Personally, I don’t immediately catch the feels, but I think three encounters is a good measure of whether I want to pursue something with you. And if you’re willing to make me not once, twice, but three times a lady, then I’m gathering this little thing we’ve got going on is something you want to continue, too.

But, the tough pill to swallow is that not everyone thinks like me and ol’ Charlamagne. Because what the man children and douchebaguettes of my generation love to do is place romantic potentials in “the gray area.” A place much worse than the friend zone, the gray area rids these people of all fault and blame when they decide to act a fool (no matter how many times you’ve been together). It’s where they place you when they hook up with someone else and then claim, “but I told you I didn’t want a relationship.” It’s how they get away with leaving the bar with another girl in tow and then saying, “it’s not like I’m your boyfriend.” It’s their excuse to rid themselves of resposibility one minute and act like you owe THEM something the next. Seriously, who needs 50, when we already have this little miserable shade of gray?

And people that do this are really the fucking worst. They keep you hanging on a string and then hide behind “being honest” to not look like the bad guy in the situation. Don’t get me wrong, everyone is free to do whatever makes them the happiest of pandas, but cut the cord if you truly don’t want to be with someone. Don’t keep them around because you’re bored or waiting for something better to come along. Don’t let their vagina get attached. Don’t hurt their feelings when they’ve done nothing to deserve it. And for the love of God, get them the fuck out of the gray area and into black or white territory before they “Gone Girl” the hell out of you.