Charming, but single

A journal in dates and drinks

You give love a bad name

I'd like to sugarcoat the story I'm about to tell, but I'm at a loss of how to do so. I can't spin it and make it sound better, nor can I frame it with enough caveats to make a certain guy's behavior acceptable. Saturday (yesterday) was a huge all-day party that a guy friend of mine gives every year. (We did this sort of thingt more when we were all still in school. Being an adult tends to take its toll on your social life.) This year's party was at a bar, where the juice and the beer were free for us for several hours. We took advantage of these no-cost drinks, and the party quickly went from fun to ridiculously fun. (For awhile.) This is the party where I was to see T, who has been calling me for two weeks without asking me out. T, who has been flirting with me and joking about needing to control himself around me. T, who, by all accounts, dragged me out of this same bar on New Year's Eve, and couldn't even make the two-block walk to his apartment without stopping to press me against a fence or parked car and kiss me full on the mouth several times. In fact, you could even go out on a limb and say that T, even though he's begun to act less taken with passion and more traditional and even shy, has been sending signals that he liked me. But you would be wrong. I was with some friends when T walked in. I resisted the urge to run over to him and wrap my arms around him and hug him. I remembered that I needed to hang back and let him come to me. I heeded the advice of numerous people to not just throw myself out there and be so available. So I pulled back, waiting for my Martian rubber band to snap back. He walked over to where I was and said something to a friend I was standing (literally) right next to. She answered and I said something. Never looking at or acknowledging me, he said something and walked away. I was stunned. My friend gave me this horrified look and another commented, "Um, was that the first of many awkward silences of the day?" I tried to put it out of my head. Perhaps he wasn't ready to talk to me, I rationalized. The boy's been known to act odd and shy, so I tried not to freak out and tried to enjoy myself. But he talked to every other person in the bar last night. He flirted with half of the women in the bar and carried on like he was having a wonderful time. He did ask me if I'd seen someone, addressing me by my name, as if to acknowledge that he did, in fact, know exactly who I was. It was humiliating. My friends know he's been calling. His friends know he's been calling. Half of the party witnessed our New Year's makeout session or heard rumors of our bathroom romp at a previous party. Everyone who knew me kept giving me these confused sympathetic looks that just made me more upset. Drinking did not help things. I had several beers and some punch. T was drinking like crazy -- he drank only Guinness (not free) and probably had a 12-pack himself. He was drunk. Unattractively drunk. He was falling all over himself flirting with everything that moved, save me. I gave him opportunities to talk to me and even tried to spark a conversation once when I was getting a new drink at the bar. Nothing. He looked as if he'd sooner die than speak to me. You would have thought that he either didn't know me or absolutely hated me. His demeanor chilled me to the bone and left me more upset than angry, more disappointed than furious. Then, things got worse and he tipped the scales from hurt to anger. I was attempting to have a non-T-related conversation with some friends when some song came on and a very intoxicated T leapt up from his barstool and pulled a woman to him and began dancing with her. (This wasn't a dancing type of party.) He spun her around and dipped her and they danced while she squealed with delight. I almost fell out of my chair. The conversation at the table died down, because it was next to impossible to ignore this spectacle. But I had to try to not notice or to at least look like I didn't care. I pulled out my cell phone and tried very quickly to think of someone to call. As I dialed the number of a friend (who was also at the party) and tried to look cool, I saw T look over at me. We locked eyes for a few seconds and then he dipped the drunk woman he was dancing with, as if to punctuate some sort of silent communication between the two of us. I wanted to not exist. It is one thing to want to avoid someone and something completely different to make a point that you are not talking to them and having a great time doing so. My friend picked up her phone, confused as to why I would call her from across the bar. I told her to turn around. She let out an audible gasp as she turned and saw T engaged in his little Dirty Dancing moment. She rushed over to talk to me. My feelings of disappointment quickly became feelings of rage. I was seething mad, because there is no reason for a 27-year-old adult to act in such a childish way. I don't care how me drinks he'd had. He was being an ass. A HUGE ass. I blurted out plans to my friend. "I'm going to walk over and yell," I said. "I'm going to yell at him and embarrass him and make sure that no woman in this bar would even THINK of speaking to him." She stopped me and pointed out that "Drunk Yelling Woman" was not an attractive role to fill. I offered up another plan, one where I called his voicemail and left him a message that said, "T, this is S. You know my number? Forget it and forget that I ever gave it to you or hooked up with you or spoke to you." My friend assured me this fell into the category of "Drunk Yelling Woman" and another pointed out that after a guy called her and said that same thing, we referred to him as "Psycho Boy" for months. My third plan was to pull him aside and say, "Hi, did I do something that caused you not to speak to me all day?" My friends rejected this as well, saying I could not let him know that I cared. The party continued. We watched some basketball and drank and had a good time. I was pissed, but trying to keep my seething internalized, because I wanted to have a good time. T was so drunk that he was stumbling everywhere. I did get up the nerve to go speak to him, and our conversation went like this:

S: Hi. What's up? T: Watching this pool game. S: So, um, what's been going on? T: I think you know what's been going on. S: Ok, so, you're dangerously loaded. [Motions to Guinness] How many of these have you had? T: I don't keep count. S: Well, maybe you should.
And then I walked away. Seriously. Terrible. T started flirting with some women I knew, but not very well. When he bounced over to a new woman, I stole his barstool and told them the situation. They were appalled, and one even reached over, softly slapped the back of his head and said, "T! What the hell are you doing?" He looked confused and went back to his new woman. They played songs on the jukebox. I am not sure which songs were theirs, but when "Perfect Blue Buildings" by Counting Crows came on, it pushed me over the edge. Counting Crows is one of my favorite bands and "Perfect Blue Buildings" is one of the most perfect songs ever written about being miserable in your own skin and just wanting to become oblivious to what's making you upset. I lost myself in the song and the drinks I'd had, until a friend leaned over and said, "S, let me take you to the bathroom." One of the women we were sitting with grabbed a napkin and very slyly wiped something off of my cheek. It was a tear. And THAT, my friends, was the end of T being in my life. I allow people to make mistakes. But in my years of dating, I've learned one thing. The ones who make you cry generally aren't worth crying over.

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Charming, but single is 25 26 27(!), lives in the Southern part of the U.S.A. and likes both her drinks and her boys tall. E-mail (listed below) her and she may respond. You can also IM her in AIM/AOL. (If she ever remembers to sign on.)
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Former taglines of this blog: "A Journal in Dates and Drinks" and "A Dateless Journal of Drinking."

Those Particulars
Some Backstory
Memories of the Way We Were
Updates and Towel Snapping
One Year Wrap-Up
Just As She Is
An Open Letter to Myself
After 26 years, she HAS learned something
An Open Letter to the Men Who Message Me Through Match
Sharing a smoke

Associated Content Interview with Charming
The Hindu: Blog Sisters are here

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