It’s rare that I feel the need to discuss my romantic life (or lack thereof) on this blog (or anywhere), but last night I participated in a text exchange so bizarre that, after removing a few identifying details, I feel that I almost HAVE to share. Because it’s appalling and embarrassing and probably kind of common these days. I mean, I don’t know what people talk about, but I’m willing to guess that there’s a lot more conversations like this going on our there than not.
People are weird. I don’t know if they were always weird. I don’t want to blame it on texting and technology and cite that as some sort of decline of our society and interpersonal relationships, but I’m not entirely sure that a man would ever compose a series of letters that went like this and sent them off via Pony Express.
And I can just barely imagine some dude with an afro standing next to the wall phone with a curly cord in his parents kitchen talking like this to a woman he admires.
I think technology may have something to do with how weird this conversation was, so I’m going to put that out there but not make this all about that. This is really more of a story about a seemingly unbalanced individual that I went on one date with a little over two years ago.
Last night I was sitting on the couch after yoga, watching TV and responding to emails when I got this text:
Now, you can see I’ve removed this man’s name from my green talk bubbles and changed his name in the phone to protect his identity. So clearly I’m a saint.
Back story on this dude: We met through friends at a party of sorts. He was friendly, really conventionally good looking (not normally my type, but hey!) and really crazy in to me. The next day he called me and set a date for later that week. We went to dinner and then a bar for some drinks and toward the end of the night he went in to kiss me. It was at that very moment that he got a bloody nose.
I’m not a snob and shit happens and I’m sure he was mortified, so I didn’t make a big deal of it. I agreed to go out with him another time.
AND HERE’S THE CATCH: His phone was apparently unreliable at the time and he never received any call or text I ever made to him and I also never received any calls or texts he made to me. I was kind of, “Eh, whatever,” about it because I wasn’t exactly over the moon for this guy and if someone’s not calling me, I figure they feel the same way and I move on. I’m not this cool in all situations, promise, I just really wasn’t like, envisioning us growing old on the beach together or anything. He was “whatever” to me.
About two weeks after our date, I signed on to Facebook and decided to check my messages. I never check my Facebook messages— it’s not a real form of communication for me. Anyone who wants to find my email can find it and just about anyone who wants or needs my phone number has it.
In my Facebook inbox was a series of messages. Things like, “You know what, Molly? You don’t need to be such a bitch. I took you to dinner and we had a nice time and you just blow me off? Fuck that. I’m a good guy and I’m not always going to be here for you.”
And I was like, “….” in my head and then I was like, “Yo, dude. I’ve been texting you and you didn’t text me back,” on Facebook. Like, maybe there was some huge misunderstanding that I missed. Maybe I hurt this guy’s feelings or agreed to something that I don’t remember or whatever.
He messaged me back, claimed that this whole misunderstanding was his phone’s fault and let’s go to dinner the next week. I was creeped out but he was apologetic and I didn’t have anything better to do.
The next week rolls around, he blows me off, I Facebook message him to ask him what happened, he claims his phone is still broken and it’s his phone’s fault and at that point I was all, “Forget it. This guy is erratic and clearly a cokehead.”
I wrote him this quick message telling him that it was fun to go out with him that one night but that it wasn’t going to work out and that frankly, he should do something about his phone because it can’t be good for him personally or professionally to be unreachable and then angry about being unreachable.
Anyway, this text that came in last night was literally the first time I’ve heard from this guy in a year and I have not seen him in two years. Around this time last year, he texted me while he was drunk and said something really complimentary and sweet. When he sent this last night I thought, “Well, just be nice and answer him.”
This is where being nice got me:
[Sorry for the places where the texts overlap, I’m not an expert at this whole “taking screenshots of texts” thing.]
Do we see what happened here?
I told this person I would get drinks with him. I was upfront about all of the reasons I was weary to meet him. I was honest about where I am in my life and my intentions for the evening.
In exchange he accused me of having self-worth issues, as if it was somehow my inability to take a compliment that was holding me back from him. He lacked any awareness of how odd his behavior was in the past. He ignored the fact that I am not interested in any sort of physical or emotional encounter.
And I would guess that he was lying about whether or not he was sober, which isn’t even the dealbreaker here for me, it’s just really obvious that this guy is drunk or off his meds.
I will not be meeting this man on Wednesday. I will not be meeting him ever. I will turn my face if I see him in public. If I’m ever asked if I know him, I’ll claim that I’ve never even heard his name.
Men, ladies: If you don’t already know to not talk to someone like this that you want to smooch or hang out with or even just know, DON’T. Don’t be strange or conceited or unaware or attempt levels of clever outside of your reach. And think about how what you say to other people completely shapes their opinion of you and it takes hard work and great behavior to ever change that opinion.