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Jewish Journal

Dating 101: Pass Over

by Ilana Angel

April 17, 2014 | 12:45 pm

I have done my fair share of dating. Sometimes I think I have dated more than any one person should, and other times I can’t get a date to save my life. At a Passover Seder this week I was asked what it is exactly that makes me pass over a man. It got me to thinking about the men I date and what it was about each of them that made me pass.

To clarify, it is not always me that passes. There have been men that I thought were fantastic and they passed on me. There needs to be mutual attraction, intellectual stimulation, spiritual inspiration, and the fluttering of my heart. That is what I need to invest in a man and while I can accept those things on different levels, they must all be there.

I have dated a variety of men. Tall, short, heavy, slender, hunters, and vegetarians. I like men who are funny, sarcastic, Jewish, tactile, and have stories to tell. Sometimes it is the smallest thing that can turn me off and the poor guy has no shot in hell. The simplest of things can give me a sharp pain in my lower back, which is my sign to walk away.

If you read Keeping the Faith with any regularity, you know when I get a pinch in my back there is no coming back. Seemingly silly things put me over the edge and as I think about them now, I see how ridiculous they are. There is no rhyme or reason to why I'm bothered by them, but I am. They will stop me from going out with a man more than once.

I don’t date Israeli men because they say “Tanks God”. Not “Thank God”, but “Tanks God”. It makes my back hurt and I just can’t. Tanks God it is instant repellant. If a man is mean to a waiter, I’m done. Chewing with his mouth open or talking with his mouth full? I’m out. In talking about these things I realize my newest turn off is too much jewelry.

By too much of course I mean any. I would insist on a wedding ring, and a watch is ok, but gold chains are out, layered bracelets are out, big diamond earrings are a no, and leather accent pieces that remind me of Enrique Iglesias make my back hurt. Maybe it is because I am older and therefore dating older men, but jewelry is only for younger men.

I can think of a couple of things I’d like dangling between my boobs as I look up into the eyes of my lover, and a gold chain is not one of them.  I like to have my man run his fingers through my hair, but having it catch on his bracelet is not cute. I like to whisper sweet nothings in my man’s ear, but swallowing his earring back is not sexy. I’m just not into any of it.

I am personally not a jewelry person. I wear earrings, never a watch or a bracelet, occasionally a necklace or a ring, but only when the occasion or outfit demands it. I am turned off by men in heavy jewelry in the same way I am turned off by men in makeup. I believe there is someone for everyone, so I’m sure there are women who like man jewelry.

It takes courage to put yourself out there and keep dating, but love requires risks and keeping an open mind. My Passover has included reflection about who I pass over, and in the end if the man is right for me, these things wouldn’t matter. By not matter of course I mean of course they matter. These are not deal breakers, just “things”.

A man can learn to chew with his mouth closed and not talk with his mouth full. I can wear his diamond earrings, so nothing is wasted there. There must be a Rosetta Stone to teach men to not say Tanks God, and the fear of a waiter taking revenge on your food should inspire better manners. Everyone has things that make them pass over someone.

It is not really passing over as much as it is having the ability to look ahead and know there is a better match. That could be total crap of course, but I’m sticking with it. I am dating, trying to not let loneliness contribute to decisions, and hopeful I will meet a man who makes me happy, thankful, grateful, and always keeping the faith.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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Ilana Angel writes two blogs for JewishJournal.com. KEEPING THE FAITH is about her worldview as a single Jewish mother, and KEEPING IT REAL is all about reality television....

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