So things were going along swimmingly (whatever that means) with Mr. Non-Sucky-Guy. Phone calls featuring rousing discussions were had, plans to meet again were made, texts were ... texted ...? I didn't see myself, say, enrolling on campus at the college he was attending, but, again, it didn't suck.
So one night, I find myself driving home after one of my typical marathon days, featuring The Christmas Visit with the older kid, two performances of the younger one's Holiday Show (totes adorbs, of course), and, between Show 1 and Show 2, a 2-hour round trip to pick up the younger one's dad, who, despite his lack of car, still, of course, wants to see his kid perform. The day went fine, things were good, much-adored ex-babysitters made appearances and were much appreciated, Mr. Non-Sucky-Guy sent a text asking how the play went, which was nice, but by ten o'clock or so, still facing the hour-and-a-half drive home, the emotional drainage was starting to kick in and I was feeling a little fried. Cranky, even. And did I mention that I was driving? So when, out of the blue, I get a text telling me dude wants to make out with me and asking how I feel about that, my response was not immediately to pucker up. Not that I wasn't flattered. I appreciate plain speaking, but what did he want? A dissertation? A pie chart, maybe? "25% flattered, 10% reciprocal of the sentiment, 40% maybe later, 100% WTF SOMEONE ELSE WANTS SOMETHING FROM ME?!?!?"*
My response was something along the lines of "Hmmmm," a nice compromise, from my perspective. He said he just wanted to know if I was as hot for him as he was for me. My first thought (I swear)? "I have no basis for comparison, and therefore no way to quantify that." Yeah, I might have been writing a few too many research papers. He said some psychological theorist or other would say he was just looking for commonality. I said my fencing teacher would say, "Attack, parry, riposte ... holy shit, where'd that sledgehammer come from!?" He became diffident over my failure to melt into a lip-shaped puddle.
The next day, the weather turned sour, prompting us to postpone our plan to meet. He told me to text him when I reached the drop-off point for my son. I felt this was a little possessive, and didn't bother. He called me as I was driving home, in the just-this-side-of-icy slush, causing me to miss the Starbucks I had been planning on stopping at to do some market research for a commission. He suggested I put him on speaker-phone. I declined, but agreed to talk to him when I got home and after I charged my phone. I was growing more irritated by the minute.
Phone charged, I answered his call. He chose to extol the virtues of fiber cereal, and moved on the narrating his game of Civilization. I told him I was tired. This was, apparently, the biggest rejection ever, as I didn't hear from him the next day, and when I compounded the insult by cancelling for Sunday (the weather was doing something between ice and snow, and I also arranged for my son to spend an extra day with his dad, for the record) he took a turn for the emo, officially turning me off forevermore.
Is there a moral? Maybe. The phrase that comes to mind is, "Good judgement comes from experience. Experience comes from bad judgement," and while I don't feel my judgement was bad (the point of getting to know someone is to get to know them, after all), the gaining of further experience for judgement could be a nice moral for this story.
An alternate moral could be "Why is this love shit so much effing work?" But that could be a little depressing.
*numbers do not add up to 100%