Maybe Baby

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I survey a broad cross-section of society i.e. Beatrice, Perky, my mother and Adrien, whose response is my absolute FAVOURITE. I print it off and flyer the flat with it, I love it THAT MUCH.

When I start to read your emails

So yeah, I survey my nearest and dearest, and there’s an overwhelming response of:

NOT OK

Which fortunately chimes with how I feel about the whole thing. I know I should be fine with it. I should be, like, that’s totally cool man, shrug it off and go out dancing with my girlfriends.

NOBODY DOES THAT.

But that’s not me. Maybe I’ve got too attached too quickly. Maybe I want a boyfriend so badly I’m ignoring all the reasons it probably won’t work long-term. Maybe this is more about pride and ego and wanting to feel special than my feelings for the guy. But whatever the reason, I’m not OK with it. So I tell him.

CC Image courtesy of Johan Larsson on Flickr

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Shoot Me

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‘What’s the occasion this time?’CC Image courtesy of avye on Flickr

‘Err….’ I scrunch up my face.  ‘How many people do you get coming in saying they’ve just been dumped?’

‘Aaw,’ she says with professional concern.

‘Not dumped,’ I put in quickly, ‘not in so many words…’

Make that no words.

Scissors at the ready, she meets my eye in the glass.  ‘No but – you want to feel good about yourself.’

I can tell she’s used that line before.

‘Yes,’ I say. ‘I want to feel good about myself.’

 

She looks up from what she’s doing.  ‘Are you up to anything tonight?’

‘I… I don’t know.  I’m supposed to be having dinner with someone but I’m err waiting to hear if it’s gonna happen.’  I laugh.  ‘I’m so bad at this dating stuff!’

She gives me a sympathetic look. ‘Why don’t you just text him saying ‘are we still on for tonight?”

‘I thought about doing that,’ I say, taking out my phone, ‘but… whenever I’ve done that in the past it’s never panned out well.  I mean, whenever I’ve… not forced it, I’ve never forced it, but whenever I’ve – y’know…’

‘Taken the initiative?’

‘Yeah, it’s always turned out badly, and I end up thinking, if I’d only heeded the signs early on I’d have saved myself a lot of heartache.  So I figured, this time, I might as well leave it, because, well, he’s clearly not that interested.’

 

Exactly a month ago I’d found myself in the same predicament with VP.  At 1.30 in the afternoon, I’d cracked and texted him.  This time, with Redhead, I leave it.  By half 6, I’ve mentally re-allocated my evening.  I feel sad, but not crazed in the way I was when VP left me hanging.  I don’t think it’s because I’ve learnt from what happened.  No: it’s because it’s not VP.

 

7pm, I emerge from the tube.  Once home, I’ll write a shopping list.  It’s still early enough on a Saturday not to look like a total loser, wandering round Sainsbury’s with a basket for one.  I check my phone, more out of habit than anything else.  And there it is, a message from Redhead, asking if I have any ideas for dinner.  I don’t know what to feel.  Fed-up?  Frustrated?  Glad?  Sad?  Pissed off?

 

Part of me wants to greet him with a reprimand.  Before he’s had a chance to sit down I want to tell him he can’t do this.  I can’t do this!  I need plans and certainty and… plans.  I need plans!  Shoot me!

 

I bet Tristan would plan, which is a pointless thought.  And anyway he probably wouldn’t.

 

I’m too tired and generally fed up to put much effort into choosing a restaurant.  There’s a part of me which can’t be bothered to go.  But I will, for the simple reason that I find him really attractive.  Now shoot me.

CC Image courtesy of jenny downing on Flickr

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The Bottom Line

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Tech-y issues mean I find myself reading old blog posts.CC Image courtesy of {Lina} on Flickr

‘…and, bottom line, we need to have a laugh together.’

I smile.  No change there.

 

‘I’m going to a ball on Friday and I can’t wait!  My partner – oh….’ I sigh.  You’d sigh.  He’s tall, dark, and impossibly handsome.  ‘And he can dance ballroom!

‘What’s wrong with him?!’

A fair question from Colleague.

‘Nothing!’

That I know of.

The last time I saw Johann was at a ball.  We danced foxtrot, but it was like no foxtrot I’ve ever danced before, full of dips and spins and drops.  After each dance he queued to get me a glass of water.  Then when I left my dress strap in his room – not what it sounds like – he went to considerable trouble to ensure we were reunited.

‘He has the most beautiful manners,’ I say, with another sigh.  ‘Not like…’

My face darkens.  Being ditched on my birthday, I can handle.  OK, so the timing could have been better, but the act itself is forgivable.  What’s not forgivable is the absence of any kind of thank you note for the dinner.  No text, no letter, no card – nothing.

‘But at least, this way, it makes it easier to move on, cos, well, you don’t want that.’

‘No,’ Colleague says, with a look of disgust.  ‘You don’t.’

 

It’s in the kitchen for some reason that thoughts of FFS come to me.

‘No NO.  Don’t think about him,’ I say out loud, clattering pots and pans, as if the noise might drown out unwelcome thoughts.

I’d read about focusing on someone’s bad points as an effective way of getting over them but had never managed to make it work for me – not because I refused to believe that the men in question had bad points, but because I didn’t know them well enough to know what they were, not having dated any of them.

‘He’s lazy and RUDE,’ I say, to the empty kitchen.

And with those words it’s confirmed, what I always knew, my actual bottom line.

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Quiet Carriage

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CC Image courtesy of pareeerica on Flickr

No mutual friends, apparently.  I scroll through the photos.  He looks nice, intelligent… why not?  We match and start chatting, despite technology’s best efforts to lose my messages in the ether.  I can’t know for sure that he’s not deleting them on receipt, but ever the optimist I apologize and send fresh replies.

He suggests drinks.  I get flu.  We reschedule.  I’m forced to cancel once again, and the next day ring to apologize/reassure him I am a real (and female) person.

In the meantime, I’ve entered his first name into the search bar on Facebook, expecting to draw a blank.  But there he is, top of the list, 1 mutual friend.  Huh?  And not a scary mutual friend either, but someone I added out of genuine Platonic – he’s gay – affection.

I click on my match’s name, and start reading.  It’s one of those painstakingly detailed profiles, chockfull of likes and interests and groups and more likes.  There’s nothing to dislike, it’s just a bit worrying how much I know about the guy.  I’ll have to watch what I say.

The phone conversation goes without a hitch.  He’s… great, but I don’t get too excited.  He might be a dwarf to my 5’10, though the photos – and statistics – suggest this to be unlikely.  More to the point, and this is irrespective of height, he might not pass the acid test.

Saturday arrives.  Now that we’ve spoken, I’m less concerned about letting something slip, but still…  And then there’s the blog.  My track record on that front isn’t good.

I needn’t have worried.  Occasionally I volunteer a comment or remark, or fragment of personal information, but for the most part I listen and nod and smile.  I wouldn’t have minded (so much) had he looked like this:

CC Image courtesy of Nostalgia-domas on Flickr

Or this,

Or if his chat had put

CC Image courtesy of DPMS on Flickr

To shame.

But he doesn’t, and it does not.

I pay my share – not bitter – and he walks me to the station.  We say a hurried goodbye and I stride off in the direction of the ticket machines.

Through the crowd I see a familiar face, and my expression brightens.  I run over and give my brother a gigantic hug.

‘This is a nice surprise!’ I say, giving his arm a squeeze.  ‘I thought you were getting an earlier train!’  I rest my head on his shoulder.  ‘I’m so happy to see you!’

And I don’t draw breath until we reach home.

CC Image courtesy of Kai Hendry on Flickr



Gets My Vote

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I find Flatmate in the kitchen.CC Image courtesy of seq on Flickr

‘I’ve found someone better, for the room,’ I say.  ‘There’s just one downside…’

I fight to suppress a smile.

‘… he’s quite attractive!’

Flatmate rolls his eyes.  ‘Why is he better?’

Did I not just say he’s quite attractive?

‘He just seemed very together and ‘on it’,’ I say.

I love how some words don’t mean anything.

Flatmate looks doubtful.

‘I swear, it’s not because he’s attractive!’

‘Yes it is,’ he says.

I laugh.  ‘It’s not!  Seriously it’s a bad thing that he’s attractive!  I wish he wasn’t!’

I do talk a lot of crap.

Flatmate gives me a look.

‘Seriously, he’s the best candidate,’ I say.  ‘Shall I see if he’s around tomorrow night?  It would be good for you to meet him.’

‘Yes,’ he says, ‘I think I should.’

Funny thing: I’m in tomorrow night.

CC Image courtesy of Liberal Democrats on Flickr