Hi Lionheart,

Happy Thanksgiving! I'm grateful for you.

I hardly ever share anything about my love life, but things started to become so funny and I’m trying to pull lyrical inspiration for a song mine called 'Lovage'. I thought you’d get a kick out of these stories and might be interested in helping me write the lyrics for this song. 

Plus, it's Thanksgiving and it's time to kick back a bit and have a fun littte read.

Dating in New York City is an adventure. In the past 2 years, I’ve had 2 really great boyfriends, but in the in-between times and now, I’m coming up across a lot of funny and memorable situations. These stories here all happened in the past month.

I wasn’t sure whether or not this was appropriate to share, but since music and art are about stories, I thought, why not? We share them in our songs and onstage, so why not share them with you here?

You know what, Lionheart? Reply to this email and tell me which story is your favorite. It’d be especially fun if you want to write a phrase, lyrics, or a hook to then put into a song. 

In no particular order, here are the potential lovers and the ones that got away:

  1. Let’s call him Smiles. I was at the Ace Hotel on Friday after my production session for Apollo. After some concentrated work, I stood up to stretch, looked around the room, and caught eyes with a stranger. At first, it was a hazy glance we shared for a couple of seconds. Then I smiled. He smiled back. That was that, and I got back into my work. Later, I walked by him on the way to the restrooms. Again, smiles at each other. After that, I ordered a glass of wine during happy hour. I went to pay for my drink, and the server told me someone had taken care of it. I asked who. It was... Smiles. I wrote him a flirtatious thank you note, went up to give it to me, and invited him to join me to chat on the couch. He was so positive and radiant. The only thing is, he didn’t live in New York. He was on a layover flight from Atlanta to Greece and popped into his favorite place, the Ace Hotel. Too bad. I really liked his energy and our conversations about personal exploration.

We left the Ace Hotel and I showed him a route where he could enjoy the best scenery on his way to his friend’s drag show. We parted ways without exchanging contact information. All we had were each other’s names and our memory. After we split ways and headed in our own directions, I heard him call my name. I turned around to see him running up to me. He kissed me deeply, and then turned and walked away. Is this what you call a New York moment?

  1. The Actor. I was on the dating app Bumble and started talking with this guy. He was cute. Tall, good shape, an actor. I was headed back to the Ace Hotel to read and write (secretly hoping to meet a cutie who actually lived in the city. I’ve actually had other dates at the Ace Hotel and people have approached me there. It’s my lucky love spot).

  2. I normally don’t extend an invitation first, but I was in an all-systems-go type of mood on a pleasant Saturday early evening and invited him to join me. He lived nearby and agreed to meet me straight away.

One of the first things he told me upon our meeting was that he’s 52 (not 40, as it said on Bumble). He said he didn’t feel anyone would swipe right on him because of preconceived notions about dating and age. That’s fair. However, I don’t want to date someone who’s 20 years older than me. I couldn’t bring him home to Thanksgiving dinner with my family. What can you do in those situations? You just make the most of it and have a good conversation. Maybe this person is here to teach you something. But still - come on. Has this happened to you?! Love, gimme a break.

  1. The Ginger. I mentioned in October how I went on a long bike ride through Brooklyn to Prospect Park and explored places I’d never been. I briefly mentioned the person I met and the joy it brought. Here’s what happened. I was cruising up and down little hills and trails off the beaten path. At one point, I stopped, looked down at something, and when I looked up, there was this nicely dressed, cute curly redhead. We caught each other’s eyes. I used to be shyer, but now I’m making more of an effort to smile at cute strangers instead of quickly glancing away. In a daze, our smiles met and we ended up talking.

One thing lead to another and we both had time and energy to be spontaneous. We explored a horse barn near the park, chatted by the lakeside overlooking the setting sun, and went for sushi. I was impressed with his white Audi with red leather interiors. ; ) The Ginger was a successful and passionate French / North African / Berber architect who seemed to have his life together, save for the unfortunate fact that he and his wife were separating and have a young daughter. He asked if it was a dealbreaker. At first, I thought no, and I just wanted to be present in the moment. However, after we kissed passionately and said goodbye, that factor rang in my mind. I did a little research online and all signs pointed to not going down this path. He’s just not emotionally in a place to start something new yet. I didn’t want to diminish my own expansive happiness and put myself in a situation where my needs wouldn’t bet met. I told him that as much as I enjoyed our time together, it’s probably better if we split ways and be in touch in a year and see if we’re both still interested. Le sigh, as the French would say. Timing is everything.

  1. The Vampire. This was another guy I met on Bumble. We had a Sunday noontime coffee first date. I’d mentioned how in October I was spending a lot of time in cemeteries in Brooklyn and at the Headless Horseman cemetery in Sleepy Hollow. (Let me explain: because I don’t have any good parks to run in near my house in Brooklyn, I go running with the cemetery as my destination). We decided after coffee to check out said cemetery to do something unique on a first date. Now, don’t worry - there were other people around. I’m pretty street smart and in touch with my intuition. I felt it was perfectly fine to go.

I learned that he’s quite the questioner - he questions everything, which is pretty smart, actually. Some of what he questions revolve around the food we eat - the chemicals that are pumped into it, the marketing, the truth about our food. He told me he only drinks raw milk. WHAT? I thought that was something only in Portlandia. I shrugged it off, appreciating the fact that maybe it’s just a curious phase of curiosity. We kissed went on our ways.
On our second date, we went from the beautiful new Domino Park overlooking the Manhattan skyline under the Williamsburg Bridge to a hot spot and ordered beef tartare and oysters. He then revealed to me that he eats raw meat at home, and has been doing so for awhile. (Is this guy a vampire? "I want to suck your blood.") He presented his argument that if someone went out to fancy restaurants and ordered sushi or beef tartare every day, no one would think twice about it. He said he was doing the same. Fair enough, but I don’t want it to be my experience. I then took a closer look at his slightly gruff hair, pants that were just a tad too baggy to fit well, and hippie shoes. The hazy first date image came into focus like a camera lens. Is this the raw meat-eater / living off the grid-type of look?
I knew things weren’t looking up between us after that reveal. Funny thing is, the next day, he texted me saying that he thought I was really special and that he wished he wasn’t leaving town the next day. He didn’t know where he was going, but it would be for a month or so. We’d talked about it during a date, so I wasn’t taken by surprise. I didn’t hear from him again and I knew I’d have to shrug off the whole thing anyways when he got back. Sure enough, a week later, I rounded the corner on my walk home and ran into him right around the corner from my house! He doesn’t know where I live and he doesn’t live in my neighborhood. I think this was a little jest from the universe, planting him right in my path. I’ve let the vampire go.
Well, those are 4 little escapades that could turn into lyrics for my new song 'Lovage' (see video below) or a new song. Want to help me extract lyrics and phrases?

And - if you like personal stories like these that inspire the music, let me know. If not, also let me know.

Catch my new YouTube video where I break down how I used inspiration from other songs to form the basis of a song I'm working on called 'Lovage.' Click here to watch it. I want to add your lyrical suggestions based on these stories to finish this song!

Mary AlouetteComment