The Dogs of Dating

Against her better judgment, Patti signed up for a computer dating subscription. It promised incredible men living right in her neighborhood, all of whom were desperate to meet a woman just like her. Having just given Derek the boot for fooling around with her ex-best friend, Patti’s ego was a little bruised.

Ruthie, now promoted to best friend, was trying to prove her worth by “solving” Patti’s life. “Locate Your Mate is amazing,” Ruthie enthused. “I met Mike, Sean, Roger and Prince on it. ”


“Not that Prince! He’s dead! Another guy who had his name changed as homage. They were both short.” Ruthie’s brow furrowed. “Prince number two isn’t sexy like the real guy, just short.”

Patti looked around the bar. In one corner, Jeff was missing his mouth with his nachos after eight beers. Mark was loudly trying to convince his wife to talk to him. Navin was beaming at his pregnant girlfriend and feeding her French fries. Definitely no prospects here. And her work at the salon didn’t exactly present her with potential dates, either.

“Okay, I’ll do it,” she sighed. Ruthie squealed with pleasure.

“By the way,” Patti asked. “Where are Mike, Sean, Roger and Prince?”

Ruthie had the grace to blush. “Kinda didn’t work out…” she whispered as though the whole bar was listening. “…but I’m still hoping.”

The next day, Patti wrote up a serious intro to herself. She put in all her great qualities – great friend, great cook, great companion, great…she didn’t think she was ready to fill in great lover at this point. She’d pretend she was a virgin – in case her bio attracted a serial killer who specialized in loose women.

Then she committed her credit card and uploaded. Putting the kettle on for tea, she settled in to wait for the hundreds of hits from perfect mates who were out there waiting for her.

Three silent days later, she revised to add, “great lover.”

That helped. The computer pinged within the hour. DavyBoy fixed cars as a hobby (employment was not indicated) and was looking for a committed but open relationship with a sexy babe. He misspelled four words in his nine-word intro. Patti blocked him.

Lowell said he was a doctor – even had a stethoscope hanging from a pocket in his photo. He sent her a twelve-page questionnaire to determine if she would be his perfect mate. She never heard from him again.

Patti agreed to meet Tony at the nearby Starbucks. He was nice…except his hair hadn’t been washed recently and he talked with nervous enthusiasm about how great it was that his previously estranged alcoholic father had just moved in with him. Patti smiled and smiled and gave him a fake phone number.

Eric was a lot of fun until he spent all the time in the pizza restaurant on a diatribe about her stupid political beliefs. When she tried to discuss, he told her she was too uninformed to waste his time explaining reality to her.

Lars was amazing – cute, funny, attentive…until he asked to borrow a little cash. He’d gladly pay her Tuesday….

After slamming her hands on the steering wheel a few times in frustration, Patti decided that the companions on offer weren’t doing it for her. On the way home, she swung into the animal shelter.
“I need someone who doesn’t talk about himself all the time, wants to hang out just with me, and has no relatives living with him,” Patti heatedly told the volunteer, name tag Andy, when she was questioned about the kind of pet she was looking for.

The cats were beautiful, but Patti knew she needed unfettered love.

“So a dog?” Andy confirmed.

“Providing it’s not on two legs,” Patti agreed.

Andy’s mouth twitched but he didn’t laugh. They spent two hours “interviewing” the dogs that were waiting for a forever home. She wanted them all, but finally Patti just couldn’t walk away from Skeeter, a lab-something mix with eyes that longed for her love.

As she filled out the paperwork, Andy slipped her a sticky note with his phone number on it. A light blush highlighted his cheeks. “Skeeter’s an amazing dog. I know you’re going to love him. But if you have any questions or want to tell me how he’s doing, here’s my direct number.”

Patti grinned and carefully pocketed the paper. “I’ll call in a couple of days with an update.”

“Perfect,” Andy said, his grin now matching hers. “Looking forward to it.”

As she left the shelter, Skeeter padding happily beside her, Patti decided to dump her on-line dating subscription. It was clear to her that Skeeter, with lots of advice from Andy, would give her everything she needed.



This is just one of the stories from my romance collection, Romance in Pajama Pants, Stories to Beguile Your Happily Ever After available on all ebook platforms and on Amazon.

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