Summer Blogcation? And Intelligence, Humor, and Phone Calls.

Column deadline this week, and summer is almost over.

I haven’t been posting much at all this summer– and I don’t have a concrete answer about why. I’d say off-hand it’s mostly because I’ve taken so many pictures instead. Currently I’ve got 871 pictures in my iPhone, via the Camera+ app.

I’ve been having a blast with my friends.  I’ve been doing things spontaneously. And it seems rather than blogging about it, I’ve been capturing it via pictures. If I had more money, I’d go out and buy myself a really nice Nikon and some good lenses, and maybe take some photography classes. Because honestly, I have a good eye and a knack for candid portraits. I like watching people interact, and catching those little moments. When I’m doing this, I’m rarely in the pictures, because I’m busy taking them.

But I’m by no means shy, and love to have my picture taken as well. People tease me about the way I pose sometimes– and I’ve been doing this since I was a kid. I would see a camera, and BAM! Pose. Smile. I can’t help it! Hee. Unless I’m really having a bad hair day or skin day or HATE my outfit, you’ll rarely see me refuse a picture. I love taking pictures with my friends, or if I’m dating someone. I love documenting a friendship or relationship with pictures, and I think taking a bunch of silly pictures is a dandy way to pass the time when you’re both having fun! But photography isn’t my passion, and math is a HUGE part of that business. Ratios for shutter-speeds, f-stops, lighting, sizing, everything. Configuring pricing packages, how much you’ll charge for prints. Ugh. I am terrible at math. I don’t want to get involved in the business end of photography– I just like to it for fun, and sometimes I enjoy modeling for my friends who are shutterbugs or photographers.

My passion is words and literature. I think that maybe this summer, I just have been on a bit of “summer vacation,” if you will– from blogging. Who knows when the urge to blog frequently again will return, if it does. I also blog a lot less now I think because I want to save my best ideas for my column  or free-lance ideas involving money. And if I blog something first impulsively, then I obviously can’t use it for my column or a feature story. Sometimes I think I’m going to write a column about something, so I hold off on blogging about it– but later find a better topic, or too much time has passed. It’s not timely anymore, or I lose the urge to write about it.

Some days, I might write three posts– and sometimes I may go three weeks without posting at all.

But tonight, I feel like saying something.

I’ve noticed a trend in the type of man which attracts me— a smart one. That’s one common denominator in everyone I’ve had a relationship or even just five or six dates with– intelligence. That’s been manifested differently– from business managers to computer tech guys, to military, academic, to tradesmen, or creative intelligence. Not all had a college degree, and that’s still not an issue for me.

I like men who are confident, and have a deep base of knowledge in some area. Often, their interests may be opposite of mine– I think that’s because I find it more intriguing to learn something different. I want someone who likes to learn, who broadens my world.

I need a strong mental connection. But I’ve found, that isn’t guaranteed just because someone is intelligent. And I think there’s a big difference between being intelligent and being overly-intellectual. Some people of high intelligence are not very social, or lack much emotion. It’s all facts, all the time. I don’t want to be narrated to– I want to talk!

I need someone I can talk WITH, who enjoys exchanging ideas and conversation.

And I realized that although intelligence is a requirement for me and definitely attractive, that I need humor and empathy as well. Intelligence can keep me hooked on someone  for quite awhile if I’m in awe of their brain– but if the emotional compatibility never materializes, I move on. I need both.

The best things I’ve found that I like in a man is humor and imagination. Being a writer, I need to be serious to come up with anything of merit.  I like hearing totally different perspectives, because they challenge me and enrich my own.  I really appreciate a man who can surprise me with a comment that throws a mental curve ball.  Who can flirt a bit and remind me not to take myself so seriously!! NOTHING is a bigger turn-off than a Debbie Downer attitude, or being too caustic or negative.

And lastly, I like talking on the phone.  There are men out there who prefer to call rather than text. They are the exception, not the rule. But they exist. I’m not anti-texting, I text just like everyone else. But I can’t subsist on that alone, even in a friendship. I need to have audio conversations too, where I can hear the person’s voice and enjoy the natural rhythm of conversation. Texting is so different, and stunted at times. It’s okay in short doses, but not all the time.

Texting is fine as a supplement to spending time together and phone calls, but I just can’t feel connected to someone who ONLY wants to communicate electronically via texting, facebook, e-mail or Google chat. At the end of the day, it’s just words on a screen. You could be anywhere, doing anything. You could be on a date with someone else,  at a bar with your friends, bored at work, or even driving.

A phone call means that the guy cares enough to focus his attention on me for the time being. And both of you can still get things done– you could be washing dishes, doing laundry,  walking your dog, cooking dinner, reading an e-mail, or whatever else people do while having phone conversations. But the best kind of phone call is the kind where you’re both enjoying talking, and maybe not even doing anything else.  It doesn’t get more romantic than that.

I was in a long-distance relationship once, and I’ll tell you why I chose that over dating local guys.  We had 2,000 miles between us, and saw each other only a handful of times in just over 1.5 years– but were both phone people.  We were already friends for years, but happened to be living in different states. We didn’t Skype at all. It was just the phone, and there was something old-fashioned and sweet about it. We didn’t write letters. We texted and e-mailed too, but that was not the bulk of our communication.  Even a 15 minute phone call made me feel special.  And two or three hours was like Heaven! To me, that was more fulfilling that going on a four-hour date with a local guy, who would probably just text me or want to talk on facebook chat instead.

These days, the best way for a guy to impress me is to pick up the phone and ask me out, the old-fashioned way.