Saturday, October 22, 2016

Scary Times

It's almost Halloween--so a scary post feels appropriate.  Earlier this year I decided to check out some dating apps (cue Psycho scream).

There's definitely been some highs and lows and I've taken numerous breaks from said apps, but it is surprising how entertaining these apps are.  People are fascinating. And crazy. So, so crazy.

The majority of men on these apps are completely undate-able, so I swipe easily through 98%, give great consideration to the other 2%, and end up swiping right on about .02%.  It's definitely hard to date on these apps if you have any standards at all.

But this time around, I thought I was doing a better job than usual. I had more matches, was feeling more confident, and my matches were actually responding to me (it's crazy/annoying/depressing how many people don't take the time to respond on these apps!).

I matched with this guy, we will call Jack.  Jack wasn't super responsive at first, which isn't very odd, but once we found out we both work for the same company we had more to chat about.  Then Jack stopped messaging me for a solid week. Fortunately (or unfortunately, considering the rest of the story)  I didn't stick with my if-they-don't-respond-in-48-hours-I-unmatch-them rule. It's a good rule.

Jack acted like a normal human being (as opposed to some of the other cretins I've swiped on) and apologized for not responding. His excuse wasn't great (it was simply that he wasn't very good about responding on the app), but then he redeemed himself by asking for my number and to become Facebook friends.  I agreed, and he was slightly more responsive, but not much.

Meanwhile, a  deal of a lifetime came across my computer screen and I bought tickets to go to the United Kingdom. This has been a lifetime dream of mine.

I knew from his dating profile that Jack had served a mission in Scotland for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, and in a moment of womanly plotting I invited Jack out to dinner to pick his brain about Scotland.  I call this ploy "womanly plotting" because while I was definitely more excited to learn about Scotland from someone who had lived there for 2 years (especially because I would love to get off the beaten tourist trap path and experience more of the culture), if this dinner turned into something more than that would definitely be a win-win.

But, as is well documented in my life, win-win scenarios don't typically happen for me. And it didn't happen in this case.

The date was set a week out at his request, and the texting conversation was lacking. But, being more excited about Scotland than him, I didn't pursue anything (also, there just gets to be a point where if I'm the only person carrying the conversation, and he's not asking questions back, it's not worth it to pursue. That is, unless he can give me sweet tips about Scotland!). So we had no communication for about a week until about 10:30 the night before our date when the following conversation happened. Please note that his name has been changed to protect the Crazy.

So, fellas, it's best to let someone know you're dating someone at the time they ask you out, not when you are confirming a date.  Also, another tip, if a relationship does form in between the time a date is set and when the date occurs, please cancel.

Also, before you think me a completely terrible person, I wasn't trying to steal another girl's man. I counseled with friends, and while we definitely all thought his approach was uncool, it sounded like he was still dating around and it was okay for me to go out with him.

I am pleading my agreement in continuing to go on this date due to my inability to know how to react to awkward situations.  I keep getting put in beyond the norm awkward situations and I don't know how to react to normal awkward situations!  Also, at this point. Scotland was still heavily on my mind.  But the next day when he texted me 3 hours prior to the date to re-confirm (annoying since it had been less than 24 hours since he had asked me the same question) he made me rethink everything. This guy then proceeded to make me feel extra special by asking how long the date would take. Sheesh.

I know. I know. At this point the blame is on me because I didn't just cancel, but I had just finished re-reading "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People" and kept thinking that this guy just had a different paradigm from me and that he wasn't meaning to be offensive by asking how long he had to endure my presence (That's how I read his text, but if he didn't want to cancel, then he had to be coming from a different paradigm. Also, my paradigm was there was a small, small, small possibility this guy could be Mister Right, so I should just chance it). So, ultimately, this bad date experience rests solely upon Stephen Covey's shoulders.

I met up with Mr. Wonderful at the restaurant.  As soon as the menus arrived (not even the check, mind you), he asked if I was paying or if we were going Dutch.  Lovely manners.  I offered to pay since I had invited him, and he graciously accepted with a fist bump to my shoulder.

He immediately pulled out his phone and without any attempt to get to know each other he went straight into talking about Scotland.  But his means of telling me what I should do in Scotland was to look at his phone, Google stuff, and tell me to write it down. At that point I was way past considering this as a date in any way shape or form, but being told to write stuff down on a date was very grating. No mission stories, no advice on food or restaurants were shared, he literally just googled stuff--something that I could have done at a much lower cost to my pocketbook.

Mr. Awesome then proceeded to ask me my salary and how much I pay for my mortgage. I regret to inform you that I gave him approximate answers to these queries due to general astonishment that I was actually experiencing this level of social inappropriateness and not knowing how else to answer other than with the truth.

He then proceeded to tell me I was shy. Curious, because I was still trying to make an effort to talk to him and be engaging, I asked him why he thought that. He informed me it was because I had stopped messaging him.  I replied that there was nothing preventing him from asking me questions back or continuing the conversation..

I was then told that my lack of responsiveness is what lead him to start dating this other girl.

My loss.  I'm still heartbroken over it.

Seriously though, all I felt was gratitude that he had some other victim lined up and glad it wasn't me!

He then told me that I was beautiful. Admittedly I don't usually handle compliments well. I'm working on being more accepting of them, but this one, although it sounds nice, literally meant nothing to me because it came from such a repugnant source. The culmination of his texts leading up to the date and his behavior on the date made him completely undesirable in every way, shape, and form.

The saccharine speech continued with him telling me how great I was and how much he just wanted me to be happy, which prompted him to then ask if I would be willing to date guys who were shorter than me.

"I go more off of personality than looks," I replied.

His response was non-verbal and was just him spending the next ten minutes on his phone showing me pictures of his Facebook friends and asking me if I would go out with them.

Once again, not knowing how to respond to this unanticipated social awkwardness, I replied that if they were interested, I would be happy to go out with them. (Also, they weren't HIM, so really the answer was YES!).

Happily our time together came to a close. We walked down to the parking garage together, he oddly insisted on me texting him when I got home, despite my protests that I lived 2 minutes away.

Upon my joyful reunion with my condo, I immediately called mys sister and busted up laughing about the oddity that had just occurred.  It really was hilarious.  I then remembered to text him back. And despite his insistence on texting me when I got safely home, he didn't text back. No thank you, no good night, no nothing.

That is until 2 weeks later when he texted me. I didn't respond (but not because I'm shy). I'm assuming the attempt to reconnect was because the girl he had been dating wised up and moved on.

UPDATE: I was having a girl's night with a  good friend and we were swapping dating horror stories. I started telling her this story, and as soon as I said where he worked at, her  jaw dropped, she asked his name, and we discovered that she had been out with this same guy a couple of years ago in what was also a horrible experience. It was a pretty hilarious discovery!

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