Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Whereby Our Heroine Decides Perhaps Dating Is, In Fact, For Her...Or Not

So a couple of weeks ago, just before I turned off eHarmony matching1 because I was communicating with a half dozen gentlemen from around the metro area and that is way more than enough, I received a match I didn't know what to do with. When I read his profile, I was intrigued...it made me laugh. But when I looked at his profile picture, I couldn't help but think "What in the hell would this man in this sharp, GQ suit want with me? Me, who falls flat on her face and spills wine into her cleavage?"2 3

And I almost closed the match.

Instead, I did nothing with it at all.

So imagine my surprise when I received a communications request from none other than The G-Man.

Figuring it couldn't hurt - because there was, after all, something appealing to me about his written profile - I answered his initial questions. And then he answered mine. Then we sent our Must Haves/Can't Stand lists and then we were all of a sudden into Stage 3 - open-ended questions.

And do you know what he asked me? "What is your most embarrassing moment in your adult life?" Ha! Perfect opportunity to tell him what a clutz I am. So I proceeded to share a story from a couple of years ago whereby I passed out4, fell, and broke toes. Then I also relayed the most recent episode of natural Jane grace previously posted here.

Do you want to know what happened?

We went on to open communications and shortly thereafter spoke a few times over the phone. Turns out, apparently he's clutzy too! He's also funny and smart5. By then I was only communicating with him and the occasional e-mail from L* while still in guided communication with one other so when he asked me for coffee on Saturday after my voice lesson, I said yes with no reservation.

Except...he got a flu shot on Friday and was feeling puny and couldn't make it. So I got my pizza and pajama pants night after all. *sigh*

He issued a raincheck for the next day though and so I got up, took a shower, and got gussied up for a mid-morning coffee date.

Except...he still wasn't feeling well and asked if he could call me later.

So I put my pajama pants back on and took a nap, figuring I'd be home for the duration.

Not so. About 5, TG called me to tell me he'd forgotten he'd taken Monday off from work because he'd meant to go see a band he liked, Divine Heresy, at the Cervantes Masterpiece Ballroom in 5 Points.

Now I'd never heard of the band and TG said they were an acquired taste but I'd gleaned enough information to know they were some kind of metal band. And I can handle that certainly. So I said yes, got out of my pajama pants for the second time and set off to meet TG.

I was early. Way early. And since he had instructed me to wait outside so that he could pay my way in, I stood out and people watched and chatted with whomever seemed interested in talking with a girl in a fancy coat which, coincidentally, was not a large number. Frankly, I think that's because I was over-dressed. I knew I should have gone with the black, leather, biker jacket so as to blend in but I wanted to look especially cute and impressive! So I decidedly did not blend in.

Anyway! In due time, TG arrived, we had a nice connection, and I settled myself in for a pleasant evening...at a death metal show...on a first date...with a seemingly nice guy. I must admit I did giggle to myself thinking about the blog entry writing itself around death metal and the jokes about the music "setting a nice romantic mood" and the jokes about how we had become the old farts at shows that, when we were young, we would have seen and not comprehended their presence and also about the many thoughts I had about the musicians themselves and hoping they each had a really good chiropractor to work out the kinks from all that thrashing of neck and head.

And when I started writing this last night, it was funny and I was feeling good...until I received an e-mail from TG who read the post about my seeing L* on Friday night and was letting me know he was not interested in seeing me anymore since I was round robin dating and actively pursuing someone else. Huh?

That was decidedly unfunny.

So I'm going to solicit advice now because I'm a little confused and since you all are clear on my total lack of dating experience, I'm fairly certain you all can understand where that confusion lies.

So here's the deal...I'm on eHarmony because I ultimately want to meet a man and fall in love. Now I don't know how it is for men on these kinds of sites but I know that just in the first 3 or 4 days after I signed up, I had received 8 requests for communication. So many that I only kept matching on for about a week before I turned it off so as not to overwhelm myself. Mostly I ended up closing the matches for one reason or another - usually having to do with a lack of interest on my part. But there were 3 who I enjoyed communicating with...L*, TG, and Name-yet-to-be-determined (let's call him TBD for short).

So I suppose I made the assumption6 that I wasn't limited to dating them each one at a time when often the matches and communications come up concurrently. I didn't realize it might be perceived as bad form to enjoy the company of 2 or 3 people, getting to know each person individually, and trying to just meet new people without an unspoken expectation that I would only talk to/date one man at a time.

So I think I need your advice. Am I doing this wrong? Going forward, should I state clearly to any new potential dates that there is a possibility I may go out with other men from time to time? Should that be an expected conversation? Or is an unspoken understanding of exclusivity the norm?

And maybe the bigger question...should I not be forthcoming about where to find my blog? I don't hide it. It is, after all, publically listed in several directories. I even mention its existence (but not its url) in my eHarmony profile. Since it's both a big part of my life as well as a recording of events in my life - which includes my dating experiences - I hesitate to withhold it.

So what do you all think?

1: This is what you do when you've got several matches you're communicating with and starting to feel overwhelmed. Or, at least, this is what I do. I don't know about anyone else.
2: This is not to say any of the other men I've communicated with/met were not handsome. Just, for some reason, TG set off that feeling of potential inadequacy in me.
3: This is also not to say I don't have confidence in myself or don't think I'm attractive enough...it's just...I'm a clutz! And that's a turn off for lots of people...especially ones who look that sophisticated in a well-cut suit.
4: No, I was not drunk. Just hot, hungry, and overwhelmed.
5: This may be unique to eHarmony. The smartness! I tell ya!
6: I know. I KNOW! Ass-u-me...duh.


kk said...

Um, I would say that this gentleman has some backwards expectations about the modern dating scene. If he can't get over it, just shrug and move on, I suppose. Maybe he is just looking to 'own' someone, you know?

My first thought about giving out the blog url: Personally, I'd hold off until you are at least pretty chummy. But that's me -- I'm a person who relishes their privacy (note that I have no blog in the first place and do not use social networking sites). So, I dunno what you should do..... putting it out there right away should act as a good filter and allow you to meet folks who are better match, so maybe that is best? I think you just have to decide for yourself what feels 'right' for you....

Jenni said...

Well that's just weird.

If he were interested in dating you and only you and wanted you to do him the same, uh, service (?), then he'd ask you on more dates and just maybe start a conversation about the possibility of seeing each other exclusively. I mean, seriously, his objection is that you went on a date with another man before you'd even met him? Or maybe he's concerned about L*'s feelings?

That you are "round-robin dating" just sounds like an excuse to me. It sounds as though he is, sorry, just not that into you and is looking for a way out. He's got other reasons why he doesn't want to date you (and who knows and who cares what they are --- they could be about you, they could be about him --- they're not relevant). It's easier for him to blame his lack of interest on your behavior than on whatever it is that's going on in him. (And maybe he's actually convinced himself that your RRD is the reason that he's not interested or maybe he's just not being direct with you in an attempt to "spare your feelings." Doesn't really matter.)

On a first date, that you are NOT dating exclusively should be the assumption and if another arrangement is desired, people should COMMUNICATE their wishes.

I don't know what to tell you about your blog --- it tends to be quite personal. As much as I am for honesty and transparency, there is a period in a romantic relationship when it may be necessary not to show the other person ALL your warts at once, you know? Flaws are endearing in the person you love, but it just may be the case that if we see all the flaws from the outset we don't get the chance to fall in love. I'm not saying you should hide your blog, but you might not want to advertise it until a few dates in.