#15 Drink and Deflect

PART TWO

I’ll give anyone at least one date.

In fact, I’m not sure I’ve EVER turned down a first date. Maybe strongly discouraged people from asking me out, but once it’s out there, usually I’ll take the offer up.

The thing with Rick is, I’m not used to the people I make out with taking me on dates. Even the repeat offenders, make out buddies, Ethan the Fireman (we’ll get into that, don’t worry), we would rarely go on DATES. Even if we hung out together, the boy would never pay. And because I used to think dating like a boy was a good idea, I’d let this slide by. Because I was that cool girl who didn’t force labels.

Anyway, I decided that in order to give this date the best shot, I’d not be my naturally ambivalent self about it. I picked a cute outfit, I curled my hair, I plastered my make up on all nice. Rick picked me up on Tuesday in the middle of a blizzard. Excellent, Midwest, thank you for FINALLY getting your winter act together.

Because of said blizzard, Rick was a little late in picking me up. This might not have been so bad if my roomie wasn’t having her own dinner date in our apartment and I was trying to find the right balance between not be a recluse creeper and giving them their privacy. When Rick finally arrived, we spent a few minutes kissing in the car before he pulled away and said, “We’d better go, or we’ll end up staying here in your parking lot all night.”

No one has ever buckled a seat belt faster. Girl’s gotta eat.

He held my hand, which was nice. He ordered margaritas, which was excellent. I was hoping that the lack of sparks between us was MY fault, my reluctance to open up, and not an actual reflection of the relationship. I was hoping that what I had interpreted as clinginess before was simply a nice guy who was being genuinely interested.

Margarita. Always a good choice.

Except… There were a few moments that stuck out as winners in an otherwise pretty blasé conversation.

The Too Forward Thinking Moment–

We were talking about places we had traveled to, and Rick’s only European conquest was the only Western European country I hadn’t been to, Germany. I, of course, went on and on and on about how I’d love to go.

Rick: Well, maybe if you play your cards right, I’ll take you.

Me: Hahaha—WTF? Is that something you really say to someone on a FIRST date?

The Too Clingy Moment–

Rick: So, since you’re not working, there’s no reason why you can’t text me all day long.

Me: I hate texting.

I DO dislike texting, for many reasons which we talked about so he wouldn’t feel like I was shutting him down, and the one reason we didn’t talk about. Namely, just because I’m not WORKING doesn’t mean I can just fritter my day away texting. I’m not that accessible. I have stuff to do. I have a blog to write, dammit!

The too Intimate Moment–

My birthday was that weekend, which I mentioned to him as I was turning 25 and it had been been kinda dominating my thoughts.

Rick: Oh man, now I have to do something nice for your birthday!

Me: No you don’t.

Rick: Of course I do!

If he wanted to do something extra for me in an attempt to woo me, I get it. But there’s zero obligation for a guy I’m on my first date with to do anything special for my birthday. I hadn’t even invited him to my party yet.

Rick. Not as mysterious as Bob.

After dinner we went back to his apartment to watch a movie. I picked Iron Man because he had it on Blu-Ray and he had an HD-TV and I’ve never actually seen such high res in action, but also because I had seen the movie before and knew I wouldn’t be missing anything while we made out. Which was what happened.

And then he pulled back and said, “At the party you told me you wanted to kiss me from the first time you met me.”

I froze. “No I didn’t.”

“You most definitely did.”

“No way.”

“Yes way.”

And I started to laugh. “I did, I did.”

This is what was really going through my head–OH SHIT.

It’s true. I did want to kiss him from the minute I met him. But this is why. It’s complicated and probably more than just a bit shady.

Rick used to be good friends with Ben. The Ex. The Engaged Ex. I never met him when he was friends with Ben, but I knew about him. And when I was in my angry revenge mode post breakup, Rick was one of the guys that I thought would be a perfect revenge date. And even though it’s been years since I’ve had that thought or felt those feelings, this instinct to want to kiss Rick remained. So what I really meant when I told him that was that I had wanted to kiss him for YEARS. And THEN I met him.

But that’s not something you tell someone. Especially when you’re in their bed and they’re saying, “Don’t be embarrassed, I had basically the same thought too.”

Um, I don’t think you did, Rick.

Maybe this should have been a sign to me. Maybe I should have realized that I’m not meant to date this guy. Maybe the lack of emotional connection should have tipped me off. But I think if you haven’t been bored, creeped out, or emotionally scarred in a first date, if the guy asks you on a second date, even if you haven’t felt the fireworks yet, it’s completely acceptable. First dates are awkward, and everyone deserves a second chance.

Except, I almost felt bad about going out with him again. I felt like I’m leading him on. But I also really wanted to give this time to develop. I wanted something to work–with a NICE guy. If only he realized that his strong statements (like, “What do you like about me?”) are actually pushing me in the other direction.

I went with him to his friend’s birthday part. And this is exactly how our night went down [don’t worry, I’m just cutting out the boring bits. Which I think is ALSO a sign]–I showed up at Rick’s apartment as soon as he got back from work, SuperSmash Brothers, make out make out make out, quick dinner, party, back to Rick’s where I completely ruined him at Mario Kart even while drunk, make out make out make out, break up.

Only, as I pointed out to him, we weren’t really breaking up because we never really dated dated.

Here’s the thing, the most astonishing thing of all, and how Rick went from a level three (out of five) clinger to a really respectable guy. We were all snuggled up together, and he says, out of completely nowhere–

“I don’t think I’m what you want.”

And it was so completely honest and out of the blue, that I didn’t really know what to say. Besides, “What?” I think I said “What?”

Ad naseum discussion about what that really means aside and whether or not we were far enough into knowing each for it to be accurate, never ever has a guy who’s been getting what he wants out of me thought enough about what I want to even discuss it.

Once Rick realized that he and I wanted different things in our relationships and our lives, he had two options. He either could have continued to take me out on dates, pay for dinner, then manipulated my emotions to get what he wanted out of me. Or he could just man up and break it off clean. I don’t know why he did it. Maybe he was protecting me. Maybe he was protecting himself. Maybe he was scared of what Matt would do to him if I got hurt. But regardless, it was the right decision, the decent choice, and the most hopeful outcome.

Because, Rick, you restored a little bit of my faith in guys, that some of them actually want real relationships and that some of them see me more than just a pretty girl to spend the next few hours with. So for that, and the giant margaritas at Casa de Fiesta, I thank you.

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4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Lizzie
    Feb 03, 2011 @ 23:55:34

    This post makes me extremely happy. I love everything about it. You Rule, Rick. You really do.

    Reply

  2. Neomie
    Feb 07, 2011 @ 13:24:22

    oy! It’s taken me forever to find the time to check out ur blog and read!! I love this post!!!! for several reasons… first of all, Rick- what a stand up guy being able to recognize shit and not be a selfish prick!! high five!

    secondly- revenge hook-up… amazing!!! I dated this dude for 3yrs…. then moved to CA- after a year or 2 of being in CA one of his best buddies (from when we were dating) came out to CA…. i didn’t see him, but we were planning on it… and if we had don’t u know i had it planned in my pretty little head to ravage the man!! mm mmm mm….. hehe… partly cuz hes amazingly hot and partly to get at the ex 🙂

    Thirdly, i love the way you write and think!!

    Reply

  3. Judy Rocket
    Feb 09, 2011 @ 00:49:31

    @Lizzie The more I think about it, the more I’m impressed by Rick. So much so that I almost texted him to hang out the other day… but then I realized that might be a little misleading. And therefore maybe a bit mean. But maybe after a little time, we’ll be able to enjoy hanging out, just as friends.

    @Neomie Thanks for checking out my blog! I dated one of my ex’s closer friends the first semester I transferred to Michigan. I didn’t mean to. I was just lonely and the guy really liked me. And so it goes. 🙂

    Reply

  4. Posicionamiento en Google
    Feb 16, 2011 @ 23:35:12

    Pretty nice post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wished to say that I have really enjoyed browsing your blog posts. After all I will be subscribing to your feed and I hope you write again soon!

    Reply

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