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1/10/14

Men and Manolos: Love and Relationships In The Heels of A Hopeless Romantic

I haven't reviewed a book in a little while, but this one peaked my interest and I had to sign up! The book Men and Manolos grabbed my attention because I remember secretly loving to watch Sex and the City.  I missed quite a few episodes because it was never on the right time and I have kids and would eventually fall asleep after they went to bed.

The girly-blogger in me enjoyed the movie sex and the city with Carrie's point of view in relationships blog along. And because my days are filled with so much and I'm a slow reader, at least I think I am, I figured this short chapter book was just right for my pleasure.

The book begins with the writer reminiscing about past relationships, lessons learned, how to move forward and all done in good shoes! :)

I like the flow of the book and the beginning got me hooked. I love the questions posed in a pondering sort of way on when: "enough is enough" in a relationship. How do you know when to raise the flag? It is true that every relationship has it's breakpoints. Some comes quickly depending on various deal breakers, others slowly and others take the wait period in love or resignation.

Based on experience I can say that even a state of indifference wont necessarily end a relationship. There are simply too many variables and they do not rest solely on emotions.

The book covers a wide range of topics that gives pause to the reader as they all apply to real life situations, no matter what relationship you are muddling through.

Some of the fun sub headings that grabbed me:
Knights:
Why are women perceived to need a knight to the rescue. I love the output that knights are everywhere and can be anyone. They come to our rescue every day and in many different circumstances. Someone just sharing a hug when you need it, at that moment is your knight.

Self Preservation:
I heard the other day in worship that the human being should be exposed to others for critical interactions or the mind can deteriorate. It made me re-think my introverted ways. I feel comfortable not associating, but honestly there are times when I would love to just hang out and have grown up conversations and relationships.

Have we over the years begun to put more than food in our airtight seal? Have our romantic ideals, dreams, and wishes threatened the longevity of our hearts and forced us to protect ourselves in an emotional airtight container? With so many individuals unwilling to trust, afraid to date, and unmoved to venture out of their own comfort zones, have our tupper containers begun to bind us rather than preserve?
In relationships, if we never open ourselves up to love, all we are doing is lengthening an inevitable expiration date living on a refrigerator shelf, believing that we are preserving ourselves....By the time we are taken out of the fridge and opened, we realized that in our attempt to protect ourselves, we had left the lid on too tight.
Love (Valentine's Day):
When she touched on the subject of her visiting the children in that orphanage, I was moved. Because indeed I remember all those years in so many orphanages and all I wanted was for the knight (family) in shining armor (love) to come rescue me. I am not sure I had experienced love, but indeed I knew it was present. After all I was made with it right? (And I don't mean from my mother and father) I doubt he loved her or she him. They were more naive and probably were infatuated with each other until the light bulb of pregnancy popped on.
These children, who had never been able to experience the love of a family, knew that love was out there. They believed in it, and they hoped that love would find them one day.  Their conviction of the existence of love was that strong.....It was this scene that I was remind of the day my friends tried to convince themselves that they were renouncing love. How is it that a group of women, who experienced the love of family, friends, mentors, and acquaintances have the audacity to say there is no such things as love? How could they hate Valentine's Day? 
Those children taught me that Valentine's Day wasn't about the commercialism. It's simply about he basic human capacity for love. A celebration of the one human emotion that still manages to surprise and amaze us.
Single: 
I have a friend who got really sad during the holidays. She is in her 30s and it hit her hard not having anyone to talk, toast a new year or cuddle with. I understand her need for human interaction and even the planning of the future.
...you hear the horror stories for so long that you begin to believe that fetish guy and paranoia boy are the only individuals left in the dating pool, that all the normal ones are taken. But what does that make us? Are we the leftovers too? Would that qualify us as having a defect? Or are we just so focused on finding someone to fit into  our lives that we have forgotten to take him for who he really is? Have we become relationship-centric? 
Expectations: 
I have many expectations from my partner in our marriage. Would things be better if I had none? We are going through a rough patch, but I don't think lowering or giving up all expectations is wise.
...It did however force me to unpack my expectation suitcase once and for all. I couldn't plan how I was going to live my love life. All I could plan was how many shoes I would need on my next trip. 
When it comes to relationships all I can expect is love and that's a much lighter suitcase to carry. 
When I was unmarried and a young girl, I had love stories from books in my head about how I'd like my life to turn out. Those kept a smile in my heart and occupied my thoughts on bored days and nights. However I didn't have time to date. I wonder if I had dated different men, if I'd have had a different sort of experience to bring to my relationship, or would those dating experiences make me hard around the edges of my heart from heartbreak. I'll probably not know.

What I do know was that I made the choice not to be in a relationship at a certain age because I knew I was vulnerable and unhealthy inside my mind. I was not able to be in a relationship and not be taken advantage of, hold my own, or provide much support and growth. I wanted to be strong, present and independent before getting involved.

Moreover I saw how many relationships were unhealthy all around me and I refused to be treated in such a way.

Deck Of Cards:
I'm in a relationship that is my first. Am I more naive in my first relationship? Am I holding on to something that can't be fixed? Or do I hold strong that people are a mess and the hard parts will heal up and bring comfort to live honestly and openly, to promote a growing and healthy relationship? If I had had other relationships before this one, would they have given me experience in how to handle all the thorns of this one? Or would they make it easier for me to walk away?
In a society where divorce lawyers and couple therapist are receiving bigger paychecks than specialized doctors, have we become too "fold" happy in relationship? Are we no longer willing to play the game of relationship, or better yet, are we more likely to fold our present hand than bet on the unknown care of our current significant other? Do relationships have their own deck of cards? 
I honestly do not know, but I do know many of the reasons why I'm still holding on.

Reunions: 
The book covers this too :) I never had one and probably never will, so I found this very funny as it seems to be a part of America's fabric.
Reunions are a pissing contest.....whoever has the best piss wins....
That made me laugh! But isn't it true! And mind you, all I can remember right now as evidence is Doug and Carrie's reunion. In King of Queens when Doug was sent an invite to his school reunion and all he had to show was that he married  a HOT wife. Carrie didn't mind but then a rift started with Carrie and Doug about how to wear her hair. She wore a bun to spite Doug who had told Deacon she looked like an old librarian. Hilarious episode if you haven't seen it.

While I loved watching Sex and the City and enjoy reading this book Men and Manolos and the stories with great dialogues and insights, I'm sure I wouldn't have handled dating too many men well. Maybe it's a personality thing :). However I'm sure I could carry on many affairs with manolos or any other beautiful shoes gifted or bought!

This books was very entertaining through the author's reminiscing of past relationships, intermingled with fashion and especially shoes.
Shoes help transform a woman
Is that true? I think they are a very important part of our daily existence. Everyone wants many choices when it comes to shoes, or they'd love a few very trustworthy pairs that will stand the test of apparel change and also time changes.
We've all heard the proverbial saying you never know an individual till you walk a mile in their shoes. Cinderella snagged a prince through the ploy of a glass slipper.... 
The ending chapter was very good. There is a reason we are supposed to live in and enjoy the present. The past is gone and cannot be undone and the future is elusive.
The only thing worse than indulging in the past is prepping for the future. Both are self-deceptive hobbies that pigeon hole us into non-existent pockets of time with figments of our imaginations....
This book is a quick read, with humor and life sized questions and insights.  It's good to find a book that brings fun and a dose of reality to the table. It was easy to think about my own heart and how I look at relationships throughout the pages.

I'd recommend this one for some book club fun! What are you reading or can't wait to read on your shelf? 


Men and Manolos: Love and Relationships In The Heels of A Hopeless Romantic

109 pages Genre: Women’s Biography, Memoir, Emotional Healing, Dating No one walks into a relationship without the proper footing… In a collection of original essays drawn from her open ended and inquisitive relationship column “Sex and the Chester,” Alyssa Velazquez explores a twenty-first century world dominated by proverbial singles, foreign and domestic affairs, and emotional recall relationships.

In her intensely personal memoir of unscripted cute meets, dates that should have never happened, and affairs to forget Velazquez searches through her past for wisdom, perspective, and advice on the survival of a hopeless romantic.

Following familiar scenarios through her never ending, often time predictable search for love in flats, sneakers, rain boots, and even a pair of Manolos her electric honesty makes us contemplate if maybe the key to the “mating ritual” is all in our shoes.

Buy on Amazon | B&N

Author’s Biography:
Living in New Jersey, Alyssa Velazquez currently works as a barista while daydreaming of mastering latte art. The product of liberal arts education, she has worked in D.C., Maryland, and Philadelphia as a conservation apprentice, production design intern, living history actor, and most recently a free-lance writer for The Women’s History Magazine and the Secretaries of Juliet Newsletter: Il Giornal de’Juilette.
velazquezalyssa@gmail.com Twitter: @AlyssaManolo Website: http://www.alyssavelazquez.net.tf


Disclosure: I received this book through Promotional Book Tours in exchange for my open and honest opinion. All thoughts are my own

Colette is a busy mom of 2 kids focusing solely on being a mom. She hails from the Caribbean and now balances the full life of being a SAHM and dabbling in odd jobs to help around the home. She enjoys sharing her memories, hopes, food, travel, entertainment, and product experiences on her blog. Please read my disclosure 
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13 comments :

  1. My SIL was a huge Sex in the City fan!

    And what a healthy state of mind in waiting to get into a relationship until truly ready. If only we'd all done the same. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Are we truly ever ready? :)
      But then experience teaches us right?

      Delete
  2. This books sound very interesting! What a great way to learn about relationships; from someone who wrote about every stage of her single/dating/love life! Thanks for posting about it.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you Taylor.
      It was a very good read.

      Delete
  3. Great points made throughout the post. I would love to share with my oldest daughter as she is in the dating and serious relationship phase of her life right now.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes do share. She would find it insightful.
      Thank you Kelly!

      Delete
  4. This sounds like a very interesting read and just in time for Valentine's Day coming up! I think it's great for people to read who are debating relationships and how to proceed.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The relationship road is quite adventurous. One should go in boldly.
      Thank you Brandi

      Delete
  5. Oh I will have to check this book out. I just finished reading my last one and have been looking for something new. Thanks for sharing.

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    Replies
    1. Quick and easy read that will have you pondering on things. Definitely check it out!

      Delete
  6. This book looks so good! I need to check it out!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you Melissa.
      I hope you too. It's a good one!

      Delete
  7. I need more romance... or I need to let SO read this himself. haha, let me forward him the hint. ;-)

    ReplyDelete

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