the writing and photography of Neil Kramer

Two Thoughts About Women


Yesterday, I chatted with a guy on Facebook.  He was someone I didn’t know, but he seemed to know me.  He noticed that we had befriended many of the same bloggers.

“A lot of married women, right?!”  he joked.

“Yeah,” I said, not sure where his thought process was heading.

“Which of them do you think is the hottest?”

“The hottest?  I don’t know.  They’re all pretty nice.”

He gave me his opinion of someone’s “hotness.”  I wasn’t quite sure what this guy was comparing — the hotness of the profile photos, the writing, or their status updates?  I assumed he was talking about the photos, but hasn’t this guy ever heard of PHOTOSHOP?  I look better than George Clooney on my profile pic thanks to the fine folks at Adobe!

Is this how most normal guys talk to each other in private?  I didn’t even know this guy and we’re already rating women on their curves?

“Whooa… nice babe in the red!” he wrote to me.  He was looking at my blog.

I clicked onto my url because I wasn’t sure what he was talking about.

He was looking at the “poster” from the Blogger Arts and Crafts show.

“That’s Erin!” I scolded him.  “She’s a blogger I know.”

“She’s… hot…”

This annoyed the hell out of me, as if he was checking out the ass of my sister.

“Hey, she’s married and I don’t think she would appreciate us talking about her like a sex object.”

“OK, OK… whoa.   You call her a “hot babe” in your own post.”

“That’s different.” I replied.


Oooh, that was a good question.  The only thought that popped into my head was that if I am going to be sexist or inappropriate, I should do it to the person’s face, or at least read her blog first.

I remember once seeing a photo of a blogger friend in a tight t-shirt.   A few days later, we were chatting on IM.

“Susan, I have to tell you that you have great breasts!” I said.  “Your husband is so lucky!”

“Really?  Thanks!  LOL”

Was I wrong for saying that?  Of course I was.  Was I being honest in expressing myself to a friend?  Absolutely.   And notice how I mentioned HER HUSBAND, as if I was congratulating him as well.  My comment was not wrong or hateful.  In fact, it was all about beauty, family values and a celebration of their marriage!

But mark my words — if some guy took me aside at BlogHer and whispered, “Check out Susan’s tits!” I would punch him in the nose.  That is just rude.


A relative died this weekend and my mother is going to Massachusetts on Monday to attend the funeral.  We had already bought tickets to a revival of “Pal Joey” tomorrow night at Studio 54, so now I had an extra ticket.

“Who should I ask?” I wondered.

A couple of weeks ago, I met a friend of a friend, a single woman.  I thought she might enjoy going to the show instead of my mother.  But just as I was about to contact her (I chose email rather than the phone, of course), the same fears and insecurities that have been plaguing me since junior high, when I had a secret love for Jane Goldfarb, came to surface.  This was a disappointment.  I was confident that years of marriage would have given me the inner strength to combat that age-old fear of the opposite sex, but it was exactly the same feeling that I remember — that fear of rejection, now mixed in with a new more-adult anxiety — the equally debilitating fear of success.  What if it goes WELL?!   What then?!

My intention is NOT to date this woman.  I just have an extra ticket.  But won’t she assume that I am asking her out on a date?  And what’s so wrong about that?  Should I remind her in the email that I am still married, and that I know she knows that I am still married?  Will she think I am a two-timing cheat?  What if she says no?  Will she feel uncomfortable with me if I meet her again at some party?  Should I just write in the email “Oh, I just happen to have an extra ticket…” to make it seem less than a date?  Or does that sound rude, like I really don’t give a crap and just asked her because she’s available?  How can I make this sound like it isn’t a date, but still give her the hint that I am asking her for a nice reason, and that I think she is smart and funny, yet I still looked at her ass that night, even though I shouldn’t have done that?  And you know what — I’m not even sure she’s doesn’t have a boyfriend.  Should that matter?  If we aren’t dating, what’s the big deal?  If some guy you just met called you up and asked you if you wanted to go to the theater, would you think it was a date?

I am now at McDonald’s writing this post.  I was going to title it something like “Wimping Out,” because I am deciding to call a male friend to go with me instead of driving myself crazy.

But you know what, I’m tired of portraying myself as wimpy in this blog.  I am not that wimpy.  I just have trouble making decisions sometimes because there are too many different scenarios playing out in my mind at once.  Maybe that is why I am good at Hollywood pitch meetings.  If a producer doesn’t like the guys driving a Corvette, — hey, they can drive a tractor instead!  But this type of creative thinking is BAD in real life.  It makes me too passive.  And what is the worst that can happen if I ask her?  She can say no.  I can French kiss her in the taxi cab on the way home?  She can fall madly in love with me and I tell her that I am still married and break her heart?    I can find her BORING and can’t wait to get home and go on Twitter?

F*ck you all.  Why am I always presenting myself as more fearful of life than I really am on this blog?  Am I doing it for your amusement?  Am I afraid that I would have a boring blog post if I actually enjoyed myself and only had positive stuff to write about.  And what do I care what you think?   This blog is not making me one cent, you social-climbing, self-absorbed…

OK, OK, calm down.  Don’t transfer your anger and frustration onto your readers.  They mean you no harm.  They like you.  Or at least they like “you” on the page — the one they think they know.  In reality, they are as weak as you, despite their bravado and their shiny happy blog headers.

And what about Sophia?  Is she going to mind if I invite this woman to the theater?  Why would she care?  F*ck it.  What’s it to her?  I’m doing anything wrong.  I’m asking one woman to go to one musical with me on a Monday night because my mother is going to a funeral in Massachusetts! What’s the f*cking big deal?!

OK, I’m leaving McDonald’s and going upstairs to email her.

I don’t want to ever hear anyone ever call me a wimp again.

Update:  She can’t make it tomorrow, so I am going with a gay male friend.


  1. Fear and Parenting in Las Vegas

    1. As a married woman of nearly nine years with two children, I will almost never turn down an opportunity to be appreciated by a random stranger who wants to call me HAWT.
    2. You’re overthinking it. Next time, call her, ask her to go and don’t worry about her reading anything into it.

  2. Laurie Ruettimann

    1. I am best friends with photoshop. This is why I don’t have zits on any of my photos. I’m not ashamed to admit it. That being said, it’s weird when people make creepy comments.

    2. Who wouldn’t a) want to see Pal Joey & b) want to see it with you? It would be great. Next time, I’ll fly up from NC. 🙂

  3. Ginger

    I’ll repeat what I said in my last comment here… I think you are making this whole thing just a little bit more complicated than it really is. (Well, in the last post, I was referring to seduction.) 🙂

  4. Neil

    Ginger — how is it so easy for you?

  5. Mattie

    You over-think everything. You have to learn how to have a thought and not beat it into the ground until the original thought is no longer recognizable.


  6. Kathy

    Which of them do you think is the hottest?

    I guess there goes the idea that blogging is one aspect of my life where I don’t have to worry whether I’m “hot” enough. 😉

  7. Shelli

    Neil, you make me smile.

  8. Robin

    For some reason, I don’t think I would be offended if you told me I had nice tits. 🙂 I am glad you asked your friend to go.

  9. Kate Coveny Hood

    This post was very funny – but the update put it over the top. Have fun at the show!

  10. MetroDad

    We don’t know each other very well but I’ve always appreciated how introspective you are. This blogging thing creates strange relationships. My advice? Don’t think so much. And don’t listen to any randomly rude Facebook frat boy friends.

    Sorry for the loss of your relative.

  11. Neil

    Metrodad — thank you. This relative was 97, so while it is always sad to see someone pass, I think the funeral will be more of a celebration of her long life, with everyone trying to figure out how someone who ate fattening foods, smoked, and didn’t exercise could live so long.

  12. Brenda - SeriouslyMama

    If I could tell you one thing is just to take deep breath and relax! You are thinking way too much about this stuff. Just let it happen. If it feels right then do it, if not then just wait. It’ll all come together.

    And I’ve never photoshopped any of my pics. In fact, the one I have on my blog and as my avatar for Twitter is even one without makeup! It it what it is. 😉

  13. dM

    I thought I was messed up in the head until I read this (loved it btw).

  14. Annie

    Neil, you think too much, I know because I have the same problem. I would figure it was a date if a man called and asked me out, unless he made it clear that it was just two friends going out, you just have to be clear and honest.

  15. patois

    Thank God for the gay male friends.

  16. Twenty Four At Heart

    You make me laugh!

  17. headbang8

    It’s not a date.

    In the same way a lottery ticket isn’t a retirement plan. But, as they say, you never know.

  18. Suzanne

    Most of my friends are guys. Wait, now that I’ve got bloggy friends that I talk to on the phone, it’s probably 50/50.

    That said, I’m accustomed to comments such as yours to Susan’s. My DH? He gets a kick out of it-kind of like the guy’s version of “she’s mine!”

    Because many friends are guys, I wouldn’t automatically assume that a guy calling with a ticket to a play is angling for a date. Perhaps she won’t, either.

    Oh, and enjoy Pal Joey. It’s a great play!

  19. vodkamom

    okay God dammit I”ll go with you. (you DO have a way of making all the rest of us feel normal)

  20. catnip

    You’re a freak. I’m so glad I’m not the only one.

  21. cog

    please forward photo of Susan’s breasts.


  22. sarah g

    thanks for being honest with us. good for you in asking her. that said; it sounds like you need a friend that you can call and do these inner dialogues with; and all of us still face these things. You’re allowed to date though arent you?

  23. Finn

    So who did you think was the hottest?

    P.S. – I’m glad you asked your female friend. My question is, do you worry about the same things with your gay friend?

  24. TRO

    I want it on record that it was NOT me that Neil had the “hot married women” conversation with. It could have been, but it wasn’t.

  25. Neil

    TRO – I would have had that conversation with you cause I know you. But I’m not going to have that conversation with a total stranger just because we are both men.

    Finn — No, I am more afraid of women than gay men.

  26. churlita

    I don’t photshop any of my Facebook photos.I do wear make-up in a lot of them. Is that the same thing?

    Hey, at least you invited her. The more I get rejected, the less it bothers me. I’m not sure if that’s good or bad.

  27. erin

    1. I’d say any blonde dressed up in a Santa’s elf costume on a poster, probably doesn’t mind if people say she’s hot. 😉

    2. I agree with everyone else — you ARE over-thinking it. Try acting on an impulse once in a while. Even if it doesn’t go well, you’ll have a great story to tell later. 🙂 Have fun at the show!

  28. maggie, dammit

    I always choose the gay man, too. We are same, young Neil.

  29. ajooja

    When one of my long-time bloggy friends (Big Pissy) posts, the only comment I ever want to make is, “You’re so cute! I just love you!”

    She is attractive, and I do love her in a non-threatening-platonic-sort-of-way, but I hate putting that out there all the time. I don’t want to seem creepy.

    I’m just sayin’. 🙂

  30. SciFi Dad

    1. I get what you’re saying, but the image of your friend Erin is hot, and I believe it was intended to be hot. Cheesy pinup retro chic, but hot.

    2. I’ll second (third, fourth, seventh) the sentiment that you overthink stuff. Like Lennon (not to be confused with Lenin) said, “life is what happens while you’re busy making other plans”.

    However, and this may not be my place, but it seems (to me, a regular reader and what I would classify as a casual commenter) that your regulars don’t want to hurt your feelings so they sweep the Sophia comments under the rug. I am incapable of doing that.

    Neil, you live not only in different cities, different states, and different time zones. From what you’ve shared, she is also living a very different life from you. If it makes yourself better, continue to call it a marriage, but realistically it’s not. You are, for all intents and purposes, single. You may love Sophia, you may want to get back together, but it’s not going to happen with you two in the places you are (physically and emotionally). You need to acknowledge that to yourself and, after what you feel is a suitable grieving period (personally, I’d say that period has already passed, but that’s just me), get back on the horse – for real – not just half-heartedly.

    You’re too hard on yourself, and too decent an individual to continue punishing yourself like this.

  31. Neil

    Sci-fi Dad — Yes, thanks.

  32. deidre

    Neil, I am very impressed with the bravery! Well done!

    Maybe next time it won’t be so hard?

  33. Danny

    More importantly, how was “Pal Joey?” I’m dying to see that, especially since it stars Martha Plimpton and Stockard Channing. (I sound gayer than your gay friend, don’t I?)

  34. Wendy

    F*ck you, too, dude. 😉

    I’m sure you’re stronger than you think you come off. This is your thinking place, and that’s exactly what a blog should be, in my opinion. At least your writing! I’ve barely been doing it at all lately. And when I do manage one, it’s about almost being dumped, or like today, sex. At least yours *means* something!

    It sounds like you over-think things. When you get the idea to do something, try to turn off your mind and just do it. No hesitation!

  35. Jessica Gottlieb

    1. Married and if my blog makes you think my tits aren’t hanging around near my navel (which incidentally is also migrating south) then so be it.

    2. Just ask the girl, what, you’ve never heard no?

  36. Ginger

    Ginger — how is it so easy for you?

    HA! It isn’t easy at all. The last guy I fell for over-thought and complicated the most wonderful situation until it was ran into the ground. It literally almost drove me insane.

    We are all human and nobody’s perfect…neither is any situation…so why not just take the plunge?

    And yes…what Sci-Fi Dad said.

  37. kanani

    *Turns off computer*
    (Neil, if you wanna talk writing call me sometime.)

  38. Marney

    While it’s not my business and I only know about your life from what you write, I have to agree with Sci-Fi Dad. It seems as though you’ve got your life on hold.

  39. Loukia

    Don’t be so hard on yourself…don’t think so deeply about these little decisions, they will drive you insane! Just go with it… enjoy life! Say what is on your mind! Also. A girl will never mind being told she looks good. Promise.

  40. Juli Ryan

    “They like ‘you’ on the page.” I know you are not the person you seem to be on your blog. Artistic license!

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