I'm a good story

A different approach

Last week I met a warm-hearted, successful and handsome fellow at a concert who I immediately took a liking to. Over the course of the night, we established that we’re both hyper-communicators, super in tune with our emotions, and completely committed to the craft of writing. In other words, he was a candidate to be my new dream man.

He walked me home and we sat on my patio with my dog Dutchie snuggled in between us.  I knew by the end of the night he would express how he felt about me.

We continued to bond over things like our vices (his: women, mine: men) and the fact that we’re both neurotic Jews, in our own special way. He told me how he dates all the time and I asked him where he meets these lucky ladies.

“Everywhere. The bus stop, the grocery store,” he said. “Guys in this city don’t ask out girls so when I put myself out there like that, it’s really not hard to get a date.”

I told him about a recent trip to LA, where men do double takes at you with sincere admiration every time you leave the house. I can’t remember a time when I felt so noticed, and in turn, beautiful.  It simply doesn’t happen like that here in Vancouver.

I commended my new friend on his tactics and told him I too am the one who usually is the pursuer, though I was starting to consider taking a different approach. Usually, when I know what I want, I know how to get it. But the pursuit was starting to get exhausting and if my track record says anything, my approach rarely produces long-term results. I told him the bottom line is that I’m not scared of the possibility of love. Then I leaned in and kissed him.

It was getting late and he called a cab. I took his number. He looked at me and smiled.

“I’m really interested in you but –”

*

A year ago, I sat my close friend Sarah down with a bottle of wine and a digital recorder and told her to tell me her secret. Sarah is intoxicatingly beautiful. She is also enchanting, charming, warm, funny, smart, witty, and intriguing. In other words, for men, she is the ultimate pursuit.

I have seen it countless times when I’m out with her. Men falling all over themselves to catch her attention, even if it’s just for a quick chat. One time that stands out particularly, was when a grey-haired, pony-tailed, washed up bohemian-type man ran out from a restaurant to ask us if we were lost. I watched as Sarah politely talked to this man, who said he was a photographer and that he really liked her “unique style.” (She was wearing jeans and a t-shirt.) I stood and watched in disgust and pity at this ridiculous old yam. I wondered where on earth he had the gall. I wanted to tell him that we are all blinded by our delusions but please, let’s get real.

What equally impresses and baffles me is that Sarah will always give her time to these men, which in turn, makes them feel like they have a chance. I view her actions as being philanthropic, a way to give back to men for expressing interest and in turn, make them feel good about themselves. Because Sarah is a better person than I ever will be.

When a man who clearly doesn’t have a chance with me starts to chat me up, I quickly tell him where to go. But that’s a story for another time.

It goes without saying that Sarah doesn’t have a problem getting not only what she wants, but getting what she wants to fall deeply, deeply in love with her. She just has a way with love.

So, that night when we sat down with a bottle of wine and my digital recorder, I asked her to tell me how she does it.

“There’s no real secret or anything,” she shrugged. “I’m simply put off when a man isn’t interested in me.”

*

“I’m really interested in you but –“

I honestly can’t remember what my new friend said after that because I totally tuned it out. Had this been a year ago, I would have overanalyzed his statement, agonized about it for days, then beat myself up for not being good enough. After I’d done that, I also would have probably pursued him anyway, in an attempt to make him realize that his initial feelings were wrong and that I am amazing and that he totally wants to date me.

Instead, I went inside, locked the door and deleted his number from my phone. I felt like shit, but it was a start.

The next morning, I took Dutchie out for a walk. An older woman and her black and white Shih Tzu walked towards us. The only thing my dog cares about in this world is me, so when other dogs approach her she generally ignores them. But something different happened this time. I watched in amazement as, after sniffing the Shih Tzu’s butt, Dutchie started to bounce around with sheer excitement.  I’d never seen her like this before. She pawed at the Shih Tzus face, waved her butt to his nose and bounced around some more. She was completely taken. I tried to walk away but she didn’t want to leave and neither did her new boyfriend. When we finally did, the Shih Tzu ran after Dutchie. They did more pawing, bouncing, tail wagging and sniffing and finally, the Shih Tzu’s owner called her dog, Teddy, and they parted ways. Within seconds, Dutchie was back in her zone, marching ahead, in tune with her step, as if nothing had even happened. I looked down at my dog lovingly and shook my head in amazement. I truly admired her approach.

Confidential to MM: I really look forward to reading your stories on love when you finally feel inspired. For whatever it’s worth, you inspired me.

August 11, 2010   2 Comments