The Strike

It’s been a full year since I went on a legit date. I’m talking out to eat with a man to get to know him; or even drinks where the premise is “Yep. I like you and want to get to know you more.”

The last real date I went on was with a guy from the gym I worked at. He was a member and I didn’t even like him at first. When he came into the gym, I thought, “Well, he certainly isn’t that attractive. I don’t get why he plays a heart-throb on TV.”

And then he proceeded to flirt with me. A lot. Like, hang out at the front desk and hold my hands and talk with me. Or, take my hand and walk with me down the long walk way to the locker room.

I understood it then. He was smart, charming, goofy, kind, and had a killer smile-- all of my favorite things. “Hmmmm,” I thought, “Shit. I like this guy. It’s clear he likes me. Why isn’t he asking me out?”

I figured it was because I’m a super nice person and he probably thought I was just doing my job and going the “extra mile”.

So, I nervously asked him out IN PERSON, YOU GUYS. He said yes and asked me for my number. To which, I blacked out and only put my name in his phone. This was a very smart thing for “blacked out Beth” to do, because he had to come and find me later on to actually get my number.

He texted me that night. “Hey! I want to let you know that I’m single but I am dating. If you’re cool with that, let’s go out to brunch.”

Um, yeah, dude. I’m single and dating, too.

We met up for brunch at my favorite, Beth-friendly restaurant that has amazing french toast that I can eat and we sat there for a while talking and laughing. He kept remarking that he felt like he’d “known me forever” and “can we please do this again?”. To which, I remarked, “YES,” because I actually liked this guy.

It takes A LOT for me to be interested in a guy. Sure, I’m a boy-crazy gal who gets lots of crushes, but the minute someone opens their mouth and they’re either dumb or not funny… buh BYE. Lady boner gone. Plus, people can be great on paper, but there’s just that thing, that je ne sais quoi that does it for me and I won’t settle for someone that I don’t feel that for. I often don’t know what it is, or even why it’s with a certain person, and I don’t care. It HAS to be there.

We made plans for the following weekend, because he had a crazy shooting schedule and I was stoked. Since we hadn’t texted all week, I checked in the day before our next date to make sure we were still on.

He told me that he had actually only been dating one person… and that he had wanted to go out with me because he thought I’d be fun, which I was, but he was going to commit to this other girl.

I gave him a piece of my mind.

Look, guys. Just be honest with us. If he had told me that up front, I would have suggested we just get drinks as friends and be done with it and move forward in that way. Now, there was no possibility of friendship.

After that, I decided to impose a dating strike. Sure, I was asked out by a few men, and I politely declined, because my rules for the strike were simple:

  1. Only accept a date if I truly think I could like the guy and that there could be something with him.

  2. I’d only ask a guy out (because it’s very rare for a man to ask me out) if I really liked him and wanted to get to know him better.

So, fast forward six months to January. I asked a guy out. I had left my job at my very fancy gym because of the egregious mishandling of the sexual harassment claim I had to file against a coworker who grabbed my ass and I missed interacting with a specific member. He had been grumpy and I had made it my mission to cheer him up whenever I saw him and in the process, I started to really like him. Yeah, he was older. Yeah, he’s an actor and I’d rather not date another one. Yeah, he’s a mess, but he had that something for me; that je ne sais quoi. So, I found him on the social media web and asked him out. He confessed to also crushing but that he was seeing someone and so I was denied.

I’ve been on a few coffee meet ups since then from online apps, but those don’t count. Those are just blind meetups where you suss out whether or not you have chemistry. The answer always being-- NO.

It’s now been a full year since I’ve been on a real date. A real, legitimate date where I sit down with a guy I’m interested in and get to know him. A full year since I’ve had those butterflies in my stomach because what if this is the first date that is that last, first date?

As for the January guy? He broke up with the woman he was seeing and we had a weird fling(?) for several months where he kept me in this awful limbo of “maybe”. That very limbo drove me crazy. It eats me up that that’s all we know of each other. I’d still like to get to know him, because I don’t think he’s the person he presented to me. I think this, because I’m not the person I presented to him after going a bit insane in limbo-land. But being treated a certain way would make anyone go a little crazy.

He’s not fully at fault-- I could have left at any time. But, I liked him. I wanted to get to know him more and all I got in return was… emptiness.

And I’m so tired of emptiness. I’m tired of being led on. I’m more tired of falling for it.

The strike continues.

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