Friday, February 27, 2009

Where Everyone knows my name: Part 2 Science Guy Edition

Ok, so I had to divide up the posts, because they were just way too long. Part 1 of the evening is down below.

So, Ro & Meg were very firmly on the Muckraker hate train which led them to ask what was up with Science guy?

Now, they've both met him, and they both liked him. In fact, they went on, and on, and on, and on, about how much they liked him, how sweet he seemed, how it seemed he was really into me, how thoughtful he is... Prince charming, right?

They asked me when was the last time I'd heard from him, what was he up to right now, we should invite him for drinks, etc. I was exasperated and pulled out my phone and said to Ro-- "If you're that interested, why don't you call him?"

And then... She Did.

Conversation? Went like this:

Ring Ring

SG: Hello?

Ro: Hi, I don't know if you remember me, but I'm Hypatia's friend. We met that time at the movies?

SG: Ummm...

Ro:Well, some of us are at the [name of bar] and we wondered if you'd like to join us for drinks.

SG: This is really awkward. Can you put Hypatia on? {as I'm trying to grab the phone from Ro}

Ro: Why is this awkward?

SG: Um. Because I can see her. I'm here now.


Like I said, this is a small town. I bet I would not have this problem if I lived in NYC. (And had friends who didn't act like 5th graders when they've had a few drinks. You'd never guess that they both have Ph.Ds and one of them is a Rhodes Scholar. Such disgraceful behaviour! :-0 )

So, Science guy was a good sport and came over and said hi. I asked him if he'd like to sit down, and he said he was here with a friend, and I said, oh bring him over. Awkward pause... Oh, I can't. better be getting back. I'll call you sometime this weekened. Ok....

I look over to where he's sitting-- Literally 2 tables away, and realize that I'm directly in his line of sight, (though he's a bit hidden from mine)... and I also realize that he is very obviously ON A DATE.

Oh. Ugh. Oops. Um.

Ro & Megs CRACK UP. And so do I, I admit. I don't think I've laughed so hard in a few years. Immature? Oh, yes. But that was the best thing to happen-- to spend time with the two of them. I'd been feeling a bit down, and this was really rejuvenating.

I ran into about 3 other people before I left that night, including my boss (though, that's no surprise since he basically lives at this bar.) I did wonder how much they'd witnessed of this evening though! Oh well...

I sent Science Guy a message when I got home saying--basically-- I'm sorry my friends are 5th graders!

He said, No problem. I'll call you sometime this weekend.

So. We shall see. I'll let you know how that conversation goes...

Where everybody knows my name: Part 1 Muckraker

I live in a small town. A very small town. It's also town where there are basically 2 major business, and believe me when I say you are always seeing people you'd probably rather not be seeing when your hair is unwashed and you just did an 11pm Ben & Jerry's run in your sweats. (Um. Not that I've ever done this. No sireee.)

I was feeling rather annoyed with my grad student friends this evening. There was a hockey game and then a party and one of my friends said he would give me the details as to where people were meeting up, but he never did. I could have called him, but I've been more than a little annoyed with him and that entire crowd lately, so I pouted a bit instead.

My friend Meg had called me earlier that day to see what I was up to, so I gave her a call and asked if she would want to come back to town and grab a bite and a drink. I had left a note for Ro at her office, and mentioned I'd be going out with Meg, and so she decided to join us.

Well, we got on the subject of -- what else-- guys (in addition to many other topics. We're not completely shallow! But for the purposes of this post, we talked about guys. :-). And so I filled them in on where things stand with both muckraker & science guy.

So, Muckraker? Still shady as shit. And still as incomprehensibly annoying as ever. I was out sick a portion of this week and on Wed as we were walking out of class he came up beside me and asked me where I'd been. I still wasn't feeling well, and I was rather annoyed with him for not following up with my lunch invitation, and so I pretty much blew him off. Seriously, if he can't be bothered, why should I? Today he arrived in class before the class started and had placed his things next to the seat where I usually sit. Since I always sit in the same spot--in the middle of a row-- it was pretty obvious he was putting his things down there in order to sit next to me.
He gave me a pretty thorough up and down look that I was rather annoyed by. Not because he was looking, but because he was looking (and appreciative, I think), and he can't be bothered to actually make a move. Why bother looking at all then? He left quickly after class without giving me a second glance.

And then... that afternoon, I found out something that really pissed me off. I had a class question and went to his facebook page to message him, and I saw on his wall all his friends were congratulating him... for his upcoming appearance on a national talk show to promote his latest book. Hey, I don't wish him ill, right, so why does it piss me off? I should congratulate him on his success, right? Well it pisses me off because if you'll recall, in one of my very first conversations with Muckraker he asked me not to mention his books to anyone in the program because he just wanted to blend in. Guess that will be kind of hard now for him, huh? It just all feels very disingenuous and very faux-humble.

Ro & Meg think muckraker is very much a "Bill Clinton" type-- Someone who is very charming and very into you, and very focussed and intently into you when you happen to be there, and then it's out of sight, out of mind, and he forgets all about you. Bingo. Unfortunately, when he's charming, he's really fucking out of this world charming... and I tend to forget his shadiness at those points.

Ro & Meg are very much onboard the Muckraker hate train that Npapaya is currently the conductor of. The whistle is blowing, and I've got one foot on the platform myself.

There's the grown-up equivelant of the prom tomorrow. I may or may not go. I may or may not see muckraker there. I'll keep you posted. I have half a mind to tell him what an ass I think he is, though that wouldn't be productive, I know.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Recap: Science Guy Edition

I was on IM with Science Guy last night and it was an... interesting conversation to say the least.

I have to say that since we're "just friends" I think I'm much more open with him than I would otherwise be if we were actually dating. I know that seems weird, but psychologically for me it seems to take the pressure off.

One of the things I realized that I do with men that I like is that I actually distance myself from them because I'm overcompensating. I feel like I make such a fool of myself in demonstrating interest that I actually pull back and perhaps don't show enough interest, which then leads the person I like to back away as well so as not to get hurt.

Based on what Science guy said I realize that this is probably what happened with us, and I realize that this is probably what has happened in a lot of my non-starter relationships.

But, like I said, I felt much more free with Science guy since we're "just friends" now, and he asked me about some items I recently mentioned I was shopping for... (Link totally not safe for work!) and that of course got us into a good and very open talk about sex... which was very different, but good at the same time.

And so, I've found myself thinking more and more about science guy, and about the potential there. I think I'd like to explore that some more, but now I'm not sure how to get out of the friend zone...

Recap: Muckraker edition

I've been discussing Muckraker with my therapist and for once I've decided to take her advice; she thinks I should force the issue and just put myself out there rather than waiting around for him to make a move which will drive me crazy.

He's going to be away for several months so you might think that it wouldn't make any sense for me to try and get some straight answers out of him before he leaves because it won't amount to anything anyways, but that's precisely why I feel like I need to do something. If I don't I'll just keep going around and around in my head, and I'll be left wondering, which is much worse.

Does that make sense? Plus, I figure the few regrets I've had in my life have been due to inaction rather than action. If he says to me, "you're crazy, you've misunderstood everything," well then-- It will be much easier to move on, won't it? It will sting, but it will be vastly easier to say to myself- Well, phooey! I didn't want you anyways.

So, keeping that in mind I decided to ask him to have lunch with me, but he said he wasn't feeling well and would have to take a rain check. (Yes, I could see that he might be saying that if he just didn't want to see me, but I did have classes with him this last week, and he did look like crap.)
Later that day I was walking through the library though and I came across him meeting with students. I was with a friend and we stopped and spoke to him for a few moments. I mentioned I was going to go and pick up papers from a professor's office, and he asked me if I wouldn't mind grabbing his as well.

So I did, and of course I couldn't keep myself from flipping through what he'd written, (which was as beautiful as always. sigh). I handed him the papers while he was with a student, and he asked me if I wouldn't mind staying for a few minutes... So, of course I did.

He came back and he offered me the paper he was going to turn in, which surprised me. I've asked to read things that he's written before and he's never responded in the past, so for him to simply offer it left me a bit speechless.

He asked me what I thought about it, and I told him he knew I liked what he wrote, I always did.

He said he was sorry he wasn't feeling up to lunch, but he'd make a point to get together before he leaves. (Sigh. I'll believe this when it happens.)

So that's that. Something happened? Nothing happened? I'm not sure.

I know I still want him, as ridiculous as that is.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Would your soulmate treat you like this?

It's been about a week, I think, since I've been missing in action on this blog. There are several reasons for that, one of which is that it's been one of the busiest weeks of the year at work. It's also been a week of doom-and-gloom as layoffs were announced this week.

As mentioned in my previous post, I anticipated being laid off, and I was right in that my position was eliminated. I was much luckier than most as I was offered another position (something I hadn't anticipated.) I am CRAZY grateful, but also feeling very sad for all those who are not as fortunate as I am.

But this isn't a blog about all the other stuff in my life, it's about my dating life, right? And my dating life is, well, non-existent right now.

I am a bit sad. As you have noticed we just passed Valentine's day. I've never been one of those people who placed particular importance on a "special" day and so it's not really the fact that I'm single on V-Day that makes me sad, rather it's the milestone aspect of it. It doesn't just represent one day that I'm single, it represents an entire year that I'm (yet again!) single.

And most of the year I embrace my singledom. Am I active in the search of someone? Sure, but I don't feel like my life is meaningless, and it's certainly not on hold, because I don't have someone. But a few times a year... Christmas... V-Day... my Birthday... it suddenly hits home if only because I realize that most people have that one person who makes sure that day is special for them... and, well, I don't. And that makes me lonely.

SINgle Girl had a great post about loneliness this week, and I could really identify with it. She wrote:
"I had another disappointing date. No big deal. I've had dozens of them. Probably hundreds. But I'd been hoping (in the way that slightly crazy people build up hope to an unrealistic degree) that things would go really well and that he would be the one. And then he wasn't. And neither was the guy before him or the guy before him or the guy before him. And I'd been building them all up in my mind as the answer. The thing that was going to make that ache of loneliness inside of me go away.

It's a horrible ache, you know. There are days I just lie in bed at night and try to remember what it was like before I felt this way and I can't. It's been so long that now it feels like it's been there forever."

I don't always feel lonely, but when I do that's what it feels like. And it makes me feel like a failure, because obviously there must be something intrinsically wrong with me for people to recoil the way that they do.

Yes, I recognize that if I really wanted to be with someone I know that I could be, if all that mattered to me was being with someone. But it's not-- I have more self-respect than that and I'd rather be single than to be with someone I'm settling for (and that certainly wouldn't be fair to that person.)

And the crazy build-up to an unrealistic degree? Oh boy do I do that, and boy do I know that's my problem with muckraker, and that's why I have a hard time letting him go in my mind.

Muckraker knew I was going to be laid off because we'd had that conversation. Did he check in at all to see how I was doing? 10 points for you if you said no.

Science guy knew I was going to be laid off because we'd had that conversation. Did he check in at all to see how I was doing? 10 points for you if you said yes.

I know why I've built up Muckraker in my mind (as discussed in previous posts). I keep having hope that the person he portrays in his books-- the sensitive, kind, thoughtful, sharing person is going to suddenly materialize. And every once in awhile I get glimpses of that person, and it's enough to keep me holding on and hoping. Because I get the feeling with him that when he falls, he falls deeply and completely and without reservation. But maybe I'm projecting, because that's the way that I fall, and so I'm perhaps only seeing what I want to see.

And this last week there was a party. And muckraker completely ignored me. And I left feeling like crap, feeling like I was unattractive, and uninteresting, and all together unworthy.

I was listening to one of those obnoxious radio shows a few mornings ago, and the woman who was calling in was talking about her "problem." Her problem was that she was in love with a man who had dumped her many years ago, and then he came back into her life. She left her husband for him, and then this guy left her. She went back to her husband, and now this guy was after her again and she was contemplating leaving her husband again. "He feels like my soulmate," the woman kept saying. "We have such a connection!"

Finally the exasperated radio host said something that really resonated with me.

Would your soulmate treat you like this?

Yes, this is "He's just not that into you" level of obvious, but somehow all of my wishy-washy back and forth came into start clarity.

If Muckraker were at all the one for me, would he be treating me with the disregard he does?

Or would my soulmate treat me... more like... more like... Science guy? (Note: I am not saying I think Science guy is my soulmate (something I'm not sure I believe in), but do I think someone I should be with would treat me more like Science guy? Oh HELL YES.)

And I know that Muckraker's hot-and-cold nature is part of his appeal to me. After all, random reinforcement is the most powerful kind, right? (Hell, that's why I'm so fond of slot machines!) And while Muckraker is not a "bad boy" I know his appeal to me is much the same.... I feel that somehow I could be the one to make him open up. I feel that somehow I could be the one he would be different with.

Madness, I know.

Muckraker makes me feel bad about myself. Rare is the interaction we've had where I don't feel worse about myself afterwards.

Science Guy makes me feel better about myself. Invariably every time I talk to him he's encouraging and thoughtful and he builds up my self-esteem.

So, duh, right? I know the answer, I know what I should do... So why am I so reluctant to do it?

Oh yes, I know why I'm single....


Friday, February 6, 2009

What's the definition of insanity?

Oh yeah... isn't it doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different response?

So here's the deal... I'm probably, most likely, very certainly getting fired let go on Monday. It is what it is... nothing to be done about it... I am understandably more than a little anxious about this.

Muckraker (who has been MIA for the last week basically-- no shock there) shockingly stuck around after class to ask me and a couple other women to coffee. Yes, he extended that invitation to everyone- so no, I'm not reading anything into this as much as I would like to.

The other women weren't able to go so we ended up back in my office. Muckraker was his cagey self (I'm so over it) not telling me where he was going this weekend, simply that he was going out of town. In hindsight this particularly annoys me because when we got on the topic of my imminent firing and he asked how I felt about it, I flippantly replied, "I feel fantastic."

He was very serious and said, "Don't do that. I really want to know. I'm not in the mood for sarcasm today." (To which I should have replied "I'm not in the mood for your super shadiness today!") And so I was honest instead.

After he left though I got annoyed. Annoyed because this is what he always does-- he took control of the conversation. Yes, that's his job, but it really makes the power dynamics unequal. He gets real stuff from me.... and what do I get in exchange? Nothing. And I'm annoyed because I want to know the real stuff, and I'm annoyed because he does it so skillfully that it's not until after the fact that I realize he's done it. Even when I'm on the lookout for it, I miss it.... (and well, it doesn't take much prompting to get me talking... and talking... and talking.)

And so I know I should focus my energies on Science guy, who has continued to be very sweet and attentive and calling me and telling me that he'll look over my resume and cover letter. Science guy really seems to be a great guy.

Muckraker is probably less attractive than Science guy (or about the same), Muckraker is less polite, he's less interested in me, he's not nearly as open, he's ... well, not nearly as nice a guy as Science guy. My friends all like Science guy, and they all think Muckraker is a totally shady schmuck (and I agree.)

But I want Muckraker.

I have to say, this is probably the one time I'm glad that the universe is smarter than I am and not giving me what I want.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Really? You "Sware"?

"hi there have a ?? for you?? were you in kmart tonight??? i sware i saw you...."

No, no you didn't. And I will not be going to Kmart EVER AGAIN.

So Weak!

Muckraker called one of my (probably actually really annoying) traits "endearing" today.

Yes, I got slightly weak in the knees.

Yes, I hate myself more than a little.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Newly discovered blog!

The Dating Papers

Good stuff there.... the particular post above is pretty interesting.

"A recent conversation with Kelli over at Dating & Mating in America brought up the topic of how one goes about determining whether or not a relationship will have lasting value and is worth continued effort. Essentially, how can you know if the flash is trash? Here are a few questions you can ask in your journey toward finding the person who you can love when they just rolled out of bed and are grumpy at the world."