Thursday, February 21, 2008

Ring-a-Ring-a-Roses... And We All Fall Down

The Ides of March are upon us – the U.S. primaries are not even over and the mud slinging has gotten as harsh as Old Man Winter. Ruthless. Relentless. Soooo good.
I’m surviving my own version of a brutal season. It’s called Post-Traumatic Dating Syndrome or when you think you might be on a god-forbid perfect date with a good heavens! an almost perfect guy (because we know the perfect guy doesn’t exist) and then reality hits you with a ton of bricks – it was all an illusion.

I met Mr X at one of those suburban jungles — homes with mini vans and a lawn sprinkler lurking somewhere — with barely any intention of getting to know him. We were introduced by a common friend and ended up exchanging info. A few days later I found myself agreeing to meet him for a coffee somewhere in my hood. [Damn, I should’ve met him at the Lincoln Memorial. At least we could have discussed history and the lights wouldn’t be as harsh.] We chatted amicably for a bit before he plunged headlong into an intense treatise on relationships, men, women, exes, and everything that came with it. Couldn’t we share a few laughs and talk about how Cheney and Obama became related? We traded accusations instead.
“You need to be more spontaneous,” he said.
“You just want to kill time before going clubbing with your friends,” I said.
Like a Woody Allen movie gone wrong, this rather testy conversation went on for a while, after which I got tired and wanted to go home. I offered to walk him to his car. He offered to give me a ride home. There were, umm, a few minor distractions on the way. Not terrible. Not great. I reached home and gave him The Side Hug and “I’ll call you soon” line.
“Are you sure you don’t want me to come up?” he asked.

The only thing my friend had told me about Mr Y was that he was “a nice guy.” Go figure. We were to share a train adventure and meet up some other folks for dinner and a show in Baltimore. Little did I know it would really be an adventure. But he lived near my house, walked over to pick me up and we struck up a fairly cordial conversation. Then we saw the crowds and the fire trucks outside the station. Union Station was evacuated and all trains were put on hold. While I scrambled for other options to get to our destination, he was already laughing and saying, “This could be a movie script!” Then he added, “Should we grab a beer in the meantime?” We did. And that’s when I saw it. The ring. Less Frodo, more Committed Husband. He was wearing it on his right hand but who cares. It was a ring aka don’t-even-think-about-it unavailable. So once again, I had to do the whole You’re-a-Cool-Guy-in-a-Buddy-Sort-of-Way (you know what I'm talkin' about).
We had a wonderful time talking about everything under the sun (except his marriage, I wonder why) and then on the train – when we were finally on it. It was definitely one of the most pleasant journeys I’ve spent with a relative stranger. No weirdness, nothing. Just. A. Truly. Nice. Guy. Only I wish he had mentioned his wife during the oh, 6 hours I spent with him?! At one point someone else asked, “Who do you live with?” and he said, “One other person.” So he may be going through some tough times but seriously, why the shady behavior.

P.S. I just found out Mr Y is NOT married after all. However, the ring is still a mystery. Watch this space :)