Posts Tagged With: relationships


I was talking to a friend about this topic (if you’ve read me for any length of time, you’ll discover that I often start posts with this phrase… what can I say, I talk to friends a lot ;-)), which comes up every so often, and decided to share this post about it….


DISCLAIMER: I am an insanely happily married man. So let me state up front that I do NOT advocate the abuse of flirting, such that it results in crushing someone’s feelings, leading people on, or infidelity.

Is it an art form? Yes, I believe that it can be… when done correctly. But like any potential work of art, if the tools are in the wrong hands, it can result in chaos… and just because you possess the tools, doesn’t necessarily mean than you can effectively use them. Flirting, as art, is usually referred to as Seduction, but for the sake of this post, I’ll stick with Flirting. With that said, you’re probably wondering, “What is he gettin’ at??” 

It’s simple… I was a shameless flirt for years. I say shameless because its something that I thoroughly enjoyed and had no qualms about. Some women have called me a tease… some have even said that I’m trouble (while smiling, mind you)… others just found it to be a mildly entertaining distraction… but whatever your opinion may be, when executed correctly, the results can be amazing.

The reality is that flirting is a game that we all play everyday… with our friends… with our family… with our coworkers and even complete strangers. We do it for different reasons… but to be good at flirting you have to first determine your goal, whether it be to win someone’s affection… to influence a person’s


Photo courtesy of Carlo Alberto Pascolini

decision… to gain an advantage… or simply for the challenge itself.

I must admit that I’ve done it for many , if not all of these reasons at one time or another. But one of my main reasons is simply because to me… there was nothing more wonderful than the smile of a beautiful woman. I sought it… and that, in itself, was reward enough for me. But I digress…

Now how does one go about becoming a successful flirt, or what one would call a “Flirt Artiste”? There are some basic requirements:

  1. Confidence: Confidence is key in maintaining a persons’ interest. It is not the opposite of shy, as some would think. You can be confident and shy at the same time, but we’ll discuss that later. Now there’s a fine line between confidence and vain cockiness. It’s up to you to find the balance. Plus, there is no one formula that works on every person… which brings me to the next requirement…
  2. Ability To Read People: You must be able to tell what actions would be most affective with different personality types (and believe me, there are many). If you think all people are the same… you’re dead in the water (dare I say “clueless”) and you probably can’t relate to anything I’m saying. Knowing where a person’s interest lies will help you determine the best approach. Now you might think that it’s hard to assess someone with a momentary glance. But the more you try it, the better and more accurate you become.
  3. Sense Of Humor: This is a MUST HAVE. If you have no sense of humor, you basically have no chance. It is a proven fact that humor creates a level of comfort, which is why professional orators often open with a joke. A sense of humor can open the heart of the most emotionally guarded of people. It is what gets you in the door, over the wall, or access to the inner circle. Even if your sense of humor is a bit morbid, it can still be used effectively.

Those are just 3, but the list could go on and on. The bottom line is that you have to be self-assured of your ability before you even attempt to flirt. You have to know who YOU are before you venture out into the world of Flirting. There are several different flirt types. And although all of them can achieve the same level of success, you have to know which type you are.

Some people have an innate ability to flirt well, and I call those “Naturalists“. I don’t know many Naturalists, but when two of them get together?!? Buy tickets… ’cause it’ll be one heck of a show! For a Naturalist, it just happens. They exude sensuality, but not in an explicit manner. Yet, you’ll find yourself drawn to them without really knowing why…

Another flirt type is the “Revealer“. These are people who will tell you up front that they flirt, and in doing so, will seduce you with subtlety. Some people find a Revealer’s honesty to be intriguing and are influenced by their up-front nature. The victim perceives a challenge in being able to resist a Revealer, thinking it easy because of the Revealer’s blatant attitude. But they don’t realize that when they take an “I won’t be fooled” posture, this actually opens them up to the very thing they are trying to avoid, and they wind up seeking the Revealer’s exclusive attention. Back in the day, I was one of these Revealers. I flirted because I was rather good at it, and I enjoyed it, but I never mislead. But even when people were told directly, they perceived whatever they wanted, no matter what I said. Such is the excitement, and the risk, of Flirting.

Part II to come. But in the meantime…

Categories: humor, opinion, personal, relationships | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Random Dove Thought: Virtual Loss

I was talking to a friend the other day about how human emotions can be so completely unpredictable and surprising. We react to situations, circumstances and people based on what we hope for, desire or even secretly covet in our hearts. What strikes me as odd is the fact that we have these “real” emotions for things that we shouldn’t really have any attachment to. This thought process begged the question:

How can you miss something that you never had?

I’ve never been a millionaire. Maybe it’ll happen one day. But I can’t very well say that I miss being wealthy when I’ve never had excess discretionary funds. And I won’t go around griping about the crap that I can’t buy because it’s too expensive. But I still feel the emotion of wanting more or feeling like it’s a memory of a season that has passed. Where does that come from?? I don’t know. But it’s not the only scenario. There are people I’ve met online that I’ve never seen face-to-face. We talk frequently. I’ve seen pictures. I may have even heard their voice on Skype or a YouTube video. But no hugs or handshakes have ever been exchanged between us. Yet, I’d still miss them if they suddenly disappeared or stopped corresponding with me. So where is that emotion birthed from?

I still ponder this question from time to time. I would never want to live in a world devoid of emotion. Love, Joy, Peace, Fear, Anxiety, Compassion, Sympathy, Anger and Worry are necessary, right? Maybe. But they sure have a way of affecting our actions in ways we may not have thought possible. I’ve long since given up trying to figure out emotions and the seeming disservice they play in our decision making. Regardless of what I think I know, it doesn’t stop me from missing that person. Although the emotions are real, the key is staying in enough control not to ever act foolishly upon them.


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Who Am I?

My name is Maurice. All of my family and many of my friends call me Riis (pronounced Reese). So please, if you’ve friended/followed me or have been friended/followed, feel free.  I was born, raised and still reside in the County of Los Angeles, California.  I come from a Pentecostal Christian family with parents who have been happily married for 48 years. Their story is from where I draw my deep understanding of commitment and devotion. I am the youngest of 4 children with 2 brothers and one adopted sister who’s exactly 6 months older than me. I grew up in what used to be called the infamous South Central part of Los Angeles. Yes, I’ve seen drive-bys. I’ve been shot at. I’ve been involved in school brawls that included more than 50 people. And I’ve had family members murdered. But neither me, nor anyone from my family has ever been in a gang. Your learn quickly to adjust to your environment and how to survive the set of circumstances you’re dealt.

I am a husband and father. I have 5 children, 4 boys and 1 girl. My oldest 2 boys are from a previous marriage that lasted from June 4, 1994 to March 3, 2001. It was especially painful to be in court on Valentine’s Day 2001 as the judge handed me the papers granting us a dissolusion of marriage that would take effect in less than 3 weeks time. I have always been, and continue to be an advocate for marriage. My current marriage began on August 7, 2004. Dre and I will be happily celebrating our 8th anniversary this year. The difference between the two is like night and day. I’ve said this before, but it bears repeating… I used to think relationships like this only existed in movies. You know, the flirty looks, giddy teasing, full of adventure, romance between two like-minded people who began as best friends and ended up as lovers. That’s us. She is, in a word, extraordinary. In my eyes no woman will ever compare.

I am a musician. Music is my passion. I dream music. When I hear music I can literally see the movement of the notes, the syncopation and the various instruments used. It’s hard to explain, but it’s a type of synesthesia. Music literally conjures images in my head. It is a part of me as much as breathing. I began playing the piano at age 7. It wasn’t that my parents felt that all of us kids should learn an instrument. No, that wouldn’t be interesting at all.  It all started because the brand new piano my parents bought for my older brother to practice on, sat in our living room untouched because he grew bored with the lessons he previously begged for.  I, on the other hand, was fascinated by this monsterous noise maker and decided that since no one else was using it, I’d teach myself to play. And I did. Slowly but surely I went from finger pecks to two-hand quad-chords. I have never had a formal lesson, but I’ve been a studio session musician, played in a few bands, and on good days I can play circles around some trained musicians. I have also taught myself to play the drums, guitar and a little trumpet.

I am a thespian. I won a trophy in a Cal-Poly Pomona Shakespear Festival in the Male Monologue category at age 16. I was Marc Antony from Julius Caesar. I have been in plays, on TV and even in movies. Never as the lead, but with enough exposure to put together a pretty impressive bio if I wanted to pursue it full-time. But I don’t. It’s not the life I wanted to lead, although it was fascinating getting a glimpse into that world.  Plus, it afforded me a SAG card which comes with its own perks. The acting comes in handy with everyday life at times. I can be quite convincing when I need to be, but I never abuse this talent.

I am a writer. I’ve been blogging since early 2001. Writing is probably second on my list of passions. I love to write and express myself in the written (or typed) word. I am not a grammer nazi, but my eyes are often automatically drawn to what I consider blatant typos in professionally published material.  I know the difference between accept and except, and I can give you the what-for in regards to new words being added to the dictionary, like noob, l33t or bootylicious.

I could go on and on about the various ingredients that were combined to make me who I am today. But at least that’s a beginning. If there’s anything that may have stirred up a follow-up question, feel free to ask me. My life is transparent.


Categories: personal | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments


I’m sure you’ve heard it as many times as I have… you know, the old saying that “Opposites Attract”.  This statement always amazed me.  It’s interesting that people often say this in regard to a relationship that seems completely unbelievable on the surface because the two people involved seem to be polar opposites.  But I have a different take on this.  I’ve learned that even though you may not see obvious similarities between a couple on the outside (ie. difference in the way they dress or their hair or whatever), on the inside, truly strong relationships are built upon the qualities and characteristics that they both share.

I’ve heard this same example used over and over again… magnets.  They say that the north attracts the south and there’s your proof that opposites attract. 

But I can use this same analogy to prove the exact opposite is true.  Consider the fact that magnets are made up of positive (south) and negative (north) polarities… and yes the negative charge is always attracted to the positive charge and vice versa.  If you try to place south against south, it will repel.

Now although this is true, in actuality these magnets are exactly the same, not different.  They’re both shaped exactly the same… the same size… the same color and they each have both positive and negative charges.   It’s not that the magnet repels itself because it’s alike… what happens is that the positive charge completes the negative charge so that they now combine to form a larger, more powerful magnet.  (which is exactly what a relationship should resemble)

If opposites truly did attract then one magnet would be completely positive and the other completely negative, but that’s not the case… and neither is it true for relationship.  Next time someone tells you that opposites attract, give them this as proof that its not true:

If I wanted to shake your hand, you’d have to face me.  I wouldn’t be able to shake your hand with your back to me, you’d have to turn around.  But just because you’re facing me doesn’t mean that you’re different.  We’re still the same… as a matter of fact, I can only shake your right hand with MY right hand!

There’s nothing more wonderful than two people finding each other who have several things in common.  Its like building a table with extra legs. The more legs, the less likely it is to fall over.

Yeah, yeah… call me crazy. But I still think I’m right. lol

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A Shovel Full of BS

Yeah, I’ve seen the movies. I’ve heard the songs. I’ve read the books, and I’ve met the people.  All of which are trying desperately to hammer home the same few fallacious concepts…

Relationships never last.
If given the chance, people always cheat.
No one can ever really be happy. 

This is utter BS.

In a world of nearly 7 billion people (that’s with NINE zeros folks), these circumstances are NOT representative of the majority of relationships. No, I don’t have a book of statistics categorizing the broken-hearted and abandoned among the world’s population. My statement is not contingent upon surveys and percentages. I don’t care what kind of messed up relationship you’ve been in before. It does not mean that everyone is the same. Unfortunately, we live in a world that has a ferocious appetite for gossip, despair and tragedy. And corporations are all too keen on stuffing us full of relationship-damaging, junk food media. The relationships that don’t last are simply the ones that we hear about most often because they make for better storytelling, easier promotion and a higher profits.

“Relationships never last.”

This always makes me angry when I hear people say this in a “matter of fact” kind of way. Instead of qualifying it by saying “my relationships never last”, people would rather use superlatives to convey depth of emotion. Sure, I could easily pull up a couple dozen movie titles in the last year that had something (or everything) to do with a miserable husband/wife. Or a neglectful boyfriend/girlfriend. Or someone who’s settling for someone they don’t really love or want because they’re getting older. But you know who writes these kinds of stories? Financial opportunists, the bitter, and the scorned. Movies like “The Notebook” or “Fireproof” get ridiculed and called chick flicks because they portray relationships that require effort for success (notice I didn’t say happiness). Relationships CAN last. But even the prettiest rose will eventually die without water and sunlight. I make it a point to nurture my marriage and cultivate the fruit born from our collective effort. My marriage is not perfect because we are not perfect people. But it is the closest thing to a fairy tale I’ve ever experienced in my life. And frankly, I’m tired of being told that love has an expiration date.

If given the chance, people will cheat.

A while back, a few people along with myself were corresponding with a guy I went to school with about fidelity (he was about to get married). A mutual friend interjected “All men cheat! If your man hasn’t cheated, just give it time and he will. And when he does, just remember that I told you so!” I was like WTH?!? My first inclination was to roar up and down about the idiocy of that statement. But I refrained. There was no need to shout down her allegation for me to know that it wasn’t true. I’ve never cheated. Ever. That’s not to say that there aren’t people who have cheated. And I don’t even care if you’re one of them. They don’t speak for me and they don’t dictate how I live my life or how I make decisions. I feel sorry for the wife of John Edwards. He (and a handful of other politicians, entertainers and the like)  chose to have sex and bring a child into the world with someone other than his spouse. John Edwards is now dealing with the full repercussions of his actions. But regardless of his public infidelity, it shouldn’t imply that every politician is a philanderer.

No one can ever be really happy.

Happiness is a choice. It is not defined by who we’re with or what we do for a living. Happiness has to do with our perspective on life and the value we place on the things that are important. The real truth is that a lot of people are simply lazy. They spend so little time putting in the work necessary to make their lives happy. Yes, I said the four letter word that some people hate to hear: WORK. Happiness doesn’t fall out of the sky. You will not simply wake up one day surrounded by bliss. You will never find happiness by sitting on your butt. People tend to substitute that effort with time spent watching/reading/listening to stories about people who are worse off that they are. Somehow that makes them feel better to say/think, “Well, at least I’m not as bad as that person.” WTH kind of mindset is that to have?? You can choose to BE happy the same way you can choose to be miserable, whether or not you’re single. And I do realize that we will encounter tragedy, injustice and discrimination. But your choices still remain. It’s a long and winding road, but I choose to be happy one day at a time.


Categories: commentary, opinion, personal, relationships | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

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