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I can’t say that I haven’t thought about entering the dating scene. The thing is, I’ve never been on a proper date in my life. I’ve had girlfriends, I’ve been married twice, yet, somehow, I’ve never been on an actual “date.” I think all my relationships have been dysfunctional in one form or another. How else does something like that happen?

Either that, or I have been on a date and didn’t realize it. I couldn’t say for sure if that was a good thing or not.

There was that one lunch date, but that didn’t turn out well after I trashed Harry Potter. You shouldn’t ask my opinion on something if you don’t want to hear my opinion, though.

I have two accounts on free dating sites and, technically, I’m registered on at least two more. That’s not counting the Russian “mail order bride” site I had to sign up for to do research (I swear) on if mail order brides still existed. For those keeping track, I’d gotten over 200 emails purporting to be from women on that site and then they all stopped. I guess they realized that this hunk of a man wasn’t really in the market. Or they got shut down. I’m going to go with the idea that there are over 200 heart broken Russian, Ukranian, and other -ian women, who just stopped emailing.

The problem is — no, one of the problems — is that I’m not very good with small talk. I’m not interested in what 90% of the rest of the population is interested in. That makes finding common ground a smaller patch to stand on. I don’t care about sports, I don’t watch “reality” television (except “Hell’s Kitchen,” “Kitchen Nightmares,” and sometimes “The Biggest Loser”), I rarely watch new movies (by myself), I don’t dance, I’m not a big drinker, and, well, I could go on forever with all the things I’m not.

“But you’re so sociable online!” you yell out. Yes, I am. I have time to think of a witty, even sensical, response. If we were facing each other and you said something to me what you would see is a blank stare for a few moments while I processed what you said and tried to come up with a response that would entertain you. Failing that, I’d try and find one that wouldn’t scare you. If that didn’t work I would have to resort to “LOL” which does not, DOES NOT, translate well to the real world. The other day I was talking to a woman and she mentioned the Lions losing a football game. I have no interest in sports so I was only vaguely aware of what she was talking about and that was because I remembered people mentioning it on Facebook.

No, I have to get to know someone and they need to get to know me before we can have really good conversation. And that’s why my relationships end up starting long past the “discovery” phase. For that to happen, though, it takes more than a chance meeting at a bar (usually). Unless she’s totally blitzed, she’ll get bored and go over and talk to the biker guy with all the tatoos.

But the other problem is that I’m clueless. I can see when a woman is trying to get it through to someone else that they’re interested in them but, when it comes to me, totally clueless. I’m more likely to think that someone is being friendly rather than hitting on me. Sometimes it can take days before it sinks in. I know I’ve said it before but it bears repeating, multiple times, that I need to be hit with the “Hammer of Obviousness” before I get it.

This is not me being self-effacing, this is the way it is.

News came out the other day that Hostess, makers of treats Twinkies, HoHos, DingDongs, and others has gone into bankruptcy. I took the news as expected, falling to my knees, taking a deep breath, tilting my head back and then screaming “Nooooooooooo!” as if an uncaring God would intervene.

Mind you, I hadn’t had a Hostess product in years. This would make me one of the reasons why they filed. But when you hear that the Twinkie may become extinct it’s the kind of thing you have to do unless you’re one of those souless health food nuts who don’t have a sense of humor. One of those people who just smile and nod, happy that a product you don’t purchase is gone from the face of the Earth because, while you don’t eat HoHos, someone else might and that would be bad for them and who better to dictate someone else’s state of health than you?

Nobody.

So, it isn’t that I would miss Hostess because I eat their products it’s because I’ve grown up with the idea of ‘Twinkies.’ Twinkies are ingrained in our culture. My culture, growing up through the 1970s and 1980s. To me, this is something else I grew up with being taken away. Another sign that I’m old and growing older.

To tell the truth, I really liked Drakes more than Hostess. Why did I make a big deal of it on Facebook and Google+? For the simple reason of wanting to take a humorous photo. The joke was to take a picture of two products made by competing bakery, Bimbo, and then caption the photo with “I was so distraught over the Hostess news that I went out, got drunk, and brought home a couple of Bimbos.” Hilarious.

I was so distraught over the Hostess bankruptcy news I went out, got drunk, and brought home a couple of Bimbos.

Getting this photo would require something simple: going out to the store and getting two Bimbo products. Almost every day I’ve seen them sitting on shelves and almost every day I would look at them and, to myself, say, “Heh heh… Bimbo…”

I went to the store. I didn’t see anything by Bimbo. I walked up and down all the aisles that I thought might contain mass produced bakery items. I visited endcaps. Nothing. I gave up and left the grocery store. I had to pass by a Walgreens on the way home so I stopped in there. Surely Walgreens would have something. But, no, they didn’t. I was asked by an associate if I needed help and I told her that I was looking for Bimbos. This, in itself, should have been an invitation to hilarity but she knew what I was talking about and told me that they didn’t carry anything. I sadly walked out to my car.

Standing there, in the dark, my hands resting lightly on the trunk spoiler of the Challenger, I wondered if I should bother going all the way to Wal*Mart. For sure, Wal*Mart has everything. Then I thought, “Maybe you’re taking this too far. You know, just for a joke picture.” And I was right. And, surely, on another day I could drop in there and pick it up. But maybe it wouldn’t be as relevent. Maybe, worse yet, somebody else would do it before I did! “That will not stand!” I shouted to the parking lot, one fist smacking into the other open palm.

I leapt into the Challenger, rolled the windows down all the way (because it was, like, 70 degrees outside!), turned Iron Maiden all the way up so that the rearview mirror shuddered with every bass note, fired up the 6.4 liter Hemi with a thunderous roar! Then I very gradually pulled out into traffic.

When I got to Wal*Mart I walked right through the doors like I was a man on a mission, turned left, and walked straight to where I’d seen that goofy Bimbo bear many times before. He wasn’t there. I looked around the bakery section and didn’t see anything there, either. Then I went down the bread aisle where the Hostess and Little Debbie stuff is kept. No, not there. I wandered down the “International” aisle. The Bimbo bear was missing. But I knew that Wal*Mart carried Bimbo. I couldn’t count the amount of times I’d seen Bimbo stuff sitting on shelves.

I resolved to not leave until I found something. Even if it was a three year old cake found in the back somewhere. I went up and down every aisle. I checked every endcap. I decided to even include the frozen food section in my search, in my madness. And that’s where I found them. In the frozen food section. Obvious.

By the time I got home, it was close to 8pm. I had spent well over an hour and a half looking for snack food cakes for no other reason than to take a slightly humorous photo.

On Wednesday I had nothing to write about and that worried me. Now, though, I’m on the verge of topping 1500 words. I guess I’m riding the coat tails of someone else’s failure and what could be better than that?

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