Dates my dating journal
I haven't gotten dressed for anything but pragmatism in far too long. I walk away from my first night as a truly singly man, excited to know that even truly adorable women will talk to you at great length about their most personal homicidal tendencies, if only you give them the slightest excuse. I also quickly find her to be some sort of bi-polar lunatic with a boyfriend with his own ex-wife and child who when she "looks in their faces I want to kill them." I ask her if upon being approached a guy — a man, even — whether she gives a damn what he's wearing. I slink away in my fancy white shirt and my punky black jeans and my Chelsea boots, laughing at myself without mutter so much as a bad joke.At the same time, a certain forced collectivization of living has lately been imposed on more and more of us. The show produces the submission of individuals to these oppressively high stakes, at least as much as it responds to it.
The “ladies” invariably show up bearing (or wearing) the fruits of several thousand cumulative pounds and labor-hours of aesthetic grooming and accessorizing investment.For Kipnis, to dream in this limited, “deadening” way can itself be seen as a form of gendered labor or housework “functional for society.”  Thinking of love as a kind of competitive date-to-marriage superhighway reconciles us to having to voluntaristically police, privatize, and take personal responsibility for large swaths of our needs within the bounds of the nuclear home (for, as we know, couplings necessarily result in new homes).To scrutinize dating through this lens allows us to unsettle both the dyadism of the format – its presumption of two players, no more and no less – and its repro-normativity, a teleology geared towards child-having.date – threatens to determine one’s subjecthood wholesale.
At the same time, where love is concerned, money is supposed to be ‘no object.’ Given that money is finite, when love has failed to germinate by the end of a date, the politics of the ‘bill’, ‘tab’ or ‘check’ becomes a freighted matter. Reluctance on the part of the masculine figure to shoulder it – given the endurance of patriarchal power in society – communicates a low assessment of his interlocutor’s value. Add a spritz of Malin Goetz musk and I'm ready to roll.