Aug. 8th, 2013

pktechgirlbackup: (pktechgirl)
My favorite pants were $30 at Anthropologie. For the uninitiated, Anthropologie's pants are rarely under $90 on sale. I don't even know what their retail price is because it might as well be a million dollars. So to find pants that could be both quirky and neutral, were comfortable, made my ass look great enough to be be-seen pants, but not so overtly as to make them inappropriate for work, for $30, is a truly astonishing feat. And even though I know the odds of a repeat are astronomical, I am compelled to check Anthropologie's sale rack every time I'm at the mall. This despite the fact that I've never seen pants I liked as much or that were that cheap since that first time. Because lightning could strike twice, and won't I feel stupid if I miss it.

I had a similar experience dating. A guy I'd interacted twice in large groups and had no connection with asked me out because he was horny and okcupid wasn't working (he didn't tell me that until later), I said yes because I needed a practice date, and we hit it off suddenly and violently, in a way that wasn't actually once-in-a-lifetime but generated enough hormones to make me feel like it was at the time. That boy was even better than the Anthropologie pants. It ultimately didn't work out, but it left me with a low bar for accepting first date invitations. I can't risk missing someone who's fascinating 1:1 because they were boring in public.

This does, however, lead to some really boring dates. Like the one I went on this week. I can now point to a lot of reasons I would never date this guy: he was boring, he performed a number of PUA tricks, all of which were subtle enough that I didn't notice the manipulation until afterwords, but which were numerous enough to be problematic whether or not they were conscious, his only compliments were for my looks despite meeting me at a stand up open mic*, he ordered me to give him a hug as a left.

But the most interesting red flag was how he kept talking like there was definitely going to be a second date, despite a complete lack of enthusiasm from me. It was always "when we" or "we should", without waiting for any interest in my part. When he finally said he wanted to get together again (without explicitly asking me), I said he was welcome to keep coming to my open mics. When he complimented me I was gracious but non-reciprical. At first I worried I was falling into the trap of wanting to smooth things over and not hurt his feelings, but I now think was me refusing to take responsibility for protecting him from his own his irrational optimism, which I feel much better about. Either way, this projection of enthusiasm without waiting for me to display the same was a serious turn off. At best, he's not reading me well (and not taking appropriate steps to compensate for his inability to do so), at worst he's displaying complete disregard for my feelings. Either way, not someone I want to interact with further.

But post-date, he has failed to take any of the follow up steps he indicated he was going to. Which makes me think that he did not at any point miss my lack of interest, but was hoping that either his enthusiasm would be contagious, or that I would simply go along with it despite my lack of interest. Assuming I'm correct, the plan backfired horrendously, and while I was originally going to criticize it for that, I suspect this guy is getting exactly who he wants.

*Even if he didn't genuinely think I was funny**, given an apparent willingness to manipulate me, it doesn't speak well of his intelligence that it didn't occur to him to use that.



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