The Crush Letter No 149: A Beautiful Love Letter, Finding Friends, 3 Things Jerry Is Crushing On

. 12 min read

I'm Dish and I write a weekly newsletter about life, love, and culture for those 50+. Because midlife and beyond is so much hotter than they said it would be. Hell yes, sign me up for the Dish.

Hello Crush,

Please help me date. Below I’ve posted the Bumble profile of somebody in my "beeline" — in other words, he has indicated he likes me. Swipe right or left? There’s a poll below. I need you, CRUSHes.

In This Letter. +Dish's Hot Thots. I stan for handwritten love letters. Like this one. +Ask Dish: Answers to Your Stray Questions Dear Dish: Can you write about how to find friends who want to go out on the weekend for dinner, concerts, theater, etc., and aren’t driven by finding a romantic partner? +Three Things I’m Crushing On. From CRUSH Reader Jerry: A new line of Weleda skin food for the face. “Because I’m a guy who is somewhat vain and wants my skin to look good, but I’m not fussy.” +What I Added to Up Next: What’s on Dish’s Nightstand in the PrimeCrush Bookshop +Help Dish: Swipe Right or Left? +Our Song of the Week  +Social Media I Loved This Week

Dish's Hot Thots.

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I stan for handwritten love letters. Like this one from Alex to Alex. Sultry, specific, tender, original, funny. Short. And he nails the sexy/sweet thing here, right?

And the crowd goes wild …

Ask Dish: Answers to Your Stray Questions

“Dear Dish:

Can you write about how to find friends who want to go out on the weekend for dinner, concerts, theater, etc., and aren’t driven by finding a romantic partner? That’s where I feel like I am right now, but my few single friends are women looking for men who are more interested in the “party“ scene than I am. Going to places where they are likely to meet available men who are looking. I’m newly single and in my 50’s. Thoughts?”

-XO, Nancy

Dear Nancy:

I have lived through this scenario, and I feel like I’m *mostly*on the other side. It wasn’t easy, and it felt lonely and isolating. I absolutely enjoy nights in with my dog and a book or movie, but I don’t want to do that every week end night and I want to feel like I have people who want to spend time with me. I want options. Invites, and to feel like I don’t always have to do all the outreach. And, there are movies I want to see or restaurants I want to check out, and I’d rather do that with somebody.

None of the steps I outline below were easy for me to do. I have felt socially at ease and surrounded by friends virtually my entire life, so it was a shock, A SHOCK, to find myself lonely and at a loss for company for the first time in my life in my 40’s after my late husband passed away. What was most disorienting was to realize that my closest friends were — understandably — because of the demands of their lives (spouses and children) — mostly not free on week end nights (when I needed their company the most).

Anyway, here’s what I did, and I hope that some of it is relevant to you, by way of example if nothing else, to be incorporated into your life in your own way:

  • I admitted to a wide circle of friends (wider than I would ordinarily be comfortable with because I tend towards a stiff upper lip and discretion) that the week ends were the very hardest periods for me. It felt really embarrassing (though it shouldn’t have) and vulnerable, and was really, really tough for me to do. I told them that I often felt frozen at my desk at work on Friday nights, not wanting to go home because I looked out over the week end and had very few social plans. I told them that even having one thing on my calendar — as little as meeting a friend for a spin class, coffee or walk — might be my only social interaction for an entire week end, and could turn a whole week end around. Once I made my friends aware, it was like a switch flicked on for them. You see, most of my friends didn’t think about it or assumed I was all set. It never occurred to them that because I dropped out of the couple’s world, I suddenly had no social world, because they live in a couple’s world and they just couldn’t imagine my life. A number of them stopped assuming that somebody else “had me covered“and started checking in - “Did I already have a plan for watching the Super Bowl?“ “Mike and I are just staying in, want to come over and hang, cook and eat with us?” “A bunch of families on our block are doing a barbecue on the beach almost every Sunday night, do you want to be added to the email list?“ A lot of these invitations were not for dinner out at a restaurant, or going out to a movie, etc., as you say that you are looking for, but they meant the world to me and alleviated the biggest pain point.
  • I asked friends if they knew friends to fix me up with as friends — and not necessarily just women friends — anyone they enjoyed (this is key) who might be similarly situated, and looking for somebody to grab a meal or go to a movie with on the week ends.
  • I IGNORED the advice that a lot of dating coaches give that you shouldn’t waste your time becoming friends with people you meet on dating apps with whom you aren’t a romantic match. Focus on the search for your match, they say. If I met men with whom there wasn’t a romantic match but we seemed to have the same interests, I told them I’d be up for being friends if they ever wanted to go to a movie, etc., If you consider who is in the potential pool of people available on week end nights to do things with (so very small), you pretty quickly get to a place where you see that essentially they’re in the same boat I am. I had a sense of whether they were good company and how they like to spend their time at that point. Over the last five years, I’ve made four cool, wonderful male friends this way — with most, I have casual, periodic get-togethers, playing golf or tennis or going out for a drink, dinner or movie. One has become as emotionally close and as cherished to me as any of my closest female friends. I ask almost all of them for dating advice occasionally. (“Remember that dress I wore …. Was that a good date dress?”) Interestingly, the friendships have endured even when they (or I) have ended up in romantic relationships (with others, obviously). (Pro tip: For me in order for this to really work without drama, it has to be super clear that it‘s a “straight-up friendship” because I don’t want to get ‘hung up’ on a friends-with-benefits or other situationship, which would derail my openness for a long-term romantic partner. I have found that this particular aspect has been easier with the two who passed on me then the ones I passed on. I do something like this, by the way: “If you would consider just a friendship I would be up for {checking out a restaurant, etc, [based on whatever that particular guy and I had in common]}.“ If they say they would be open to hanging, then by the time we make a plan it leads to a text that looks something like this (only the first time we’re going out): “Sure, I’d love to. Not to be presumptuous, but just for the sake of clarity since we recently met, I‘ll just say that since we’re just going to be platonic friends I am still actively out dating, etc. If we’re on the same page then sure, I’d love to check out ___ on Friday.”

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Three Things I'm Crushing On: From CRUSH Reader Jerry

The Deep Roots of Weleda's Skin Food - The New York Times
  1. The new Weleda line of face creams. I have been a big fan of Weleda ever since I dated this one woman with beautiful skin who smelled wonderful, but not overly perfumed. I just noticed in Whole Foods that they came out with a new line of “Skin Food” for the face. I went online and saw that there are all kinds of options, including for aging skin. I’m all in. Because I’m a guy who is somewhat vain and wants my skin to look good, but I’m not fussy. Like, I like that I can get it in my grocery store. I also like to avoid unnecessary chemicals. This does it. The Nourishing Day Cream is under $25 and a little goes a long way. I use the night cream too.
  1. The new knit, collared Criquet shirt in midnight blue. 

Honestly, I don’t think you can do better for a casual date or night out in a mild / warm weather climate than a sharp-looking, long-sleeve, collared knit shirt. It is relaxed and comfortable but it says that effort was made. Guys, I get compliments on this shirt on every date. It’s very soft, too, so women want to touch it. Which means they are touching me.

RIA Eyewear Announced as Official Eyewear Partner | US Squash
  1. I think Ria Eyewear for playing sports is new, or at least a lot of people I know are just discovering it. 

They make high-definition sunglasses for sports - pickleball, which is what I play, as well as tennis and golf. Not cheap (just under $200) but worth every penny. Lightweight, durable and you see really well. I wear the navy versions because I don’t need to look like Darth Vader - I like to be approachable — and I think it’s a bit classier and sportier for summer sports than black. Plus, I saw a guy come off the courts in the white ones and I thought he looked like a goofball. Navy is the way to go, I think.

Anything else you’d like to tell us?

I love The Crush Letter. Thanks, Dish!

Thank you, Jerry. I am going to order the Weleda Face Food! I love their hand cream and had no idea that they came out with a moisturizer for the face.

Want to share what you're currently crushing on? We would love to share it. Let us know here!

What I Added to Up Next: What’s on Dish’s Nightstand in the PrimeCrush Bookshop.

Chip War: The Fight for the World's Most Critical Technology

I’m late to the party on this 2022 book that a number of friends have called “a nonfiction thriller” about the semiconductor industry and its impact on geopolitics. My nephew recently started reading it while visiting and I heard a lot of “Oh my god” and “amazing” coming from the couch when he had it in his hands.

Chip War: The Fight for the World's Most Critical Technology - Miller, Chris

The Heaven & Earth Grocery Store by James McBride

“Masterful storytelling” and “tender and heart-warming” is how two separate friends described it to me last week.

The Heaven & Earth Grocery Store - McBride, James

About Alice by Calvin Trillin

Perhaps it was that it was Valentine’s Day this past week and I was feeling sentimental, but I picked up this wonderful tribute by Trillin, a favorite writer, to his wife Alice. This was the third time I’ve read it.

About Alice - Trillin, Calvin

Help Dish: Swipe Right or Left?

Song of the Week

Vogue by Madonna

She’s on tour. So many friends have seen it. ”Did you take any pictures?” I asked one. “No, I was too busy dancing,” she responded. That pretty much says it all. This is my favorite Madonna song, and I love this live version from the 1990 MTV awards.

Live at the 1990 MTV Awards

Social Media I Loved This Week






Well we made it through January, CRUSHes, and then we made it through Valentine’s Day. We can do anything.

Dish Stanley XO,

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If you love me as much as I love you (and I really do love you!), then please help me grow by forwarding this {love} Letter to a friend! And I'd love to have you join us on instagram.

The Crush Letter
The Crush Letter is a weekly newsletter from Dish Stanley curating articles & intelligence on everything love & connection - friendship, romance, self-love, sex. If you’d like to take a look at some of our best stories go to Read Us. Want the Dish?


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