I’ve come to the conclusion in the last several weeks that I am apparently impossible to read, particularly when it comes to romantic intentions with guys.
I flirt like a ninja, so subtle that no one has any idea that I was ever there or that anything ever happened. My signals and signs must not be clear. And I don’t think this is a good thing.
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I’ve been on a couple dates with the hipster introvert writer, now nicknamed “Glasses”. Starting with the casual friend group hang and trying to transition into a dating scenario can be tricky, especially when you are both a bit shy and subtle.
It’s been moving at a glacial pace due in part, I have been told, to my tendency to keep myself at an unreadable length. In my fear of being too overeager, (or thirsty as the kids are saying these days), I swing to the opposite extreme of the pendulum, forgetting to make it understood that I am actually interested in someone romantically.
So the other night, in pursuit of being more frank (dank as my phone auto-correct is enamored with saying), I send Glasses a quick text to convey how great it was to just hang and cuddle and watch a movie. Obvious message: “I like you and want to keep doing such activities. Casual dating activities.” Plus hidden message: “Dating me doesn’t have to be a big going out or expensive thing. I can be chill too.”
I give myself a little high five, feeling super successful. I send a screen shot to my friend L to prove how well “Project Interest” (as another friend loving dubbed my attempts to make it clear that I like him) was going.
This is what I got back from her.
Clearly it was tough love time. And obviously I am not understandable even in my moments of trying for bold. I may need to reevaluate my sense of being clear and comprehensible, particularly to the opposite gender.
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“Don’t Touch Me”
On the other end of the spectrum, sometimes when I think it is quite clear that I am NOT romantically interested the message is also lost somewhere in translation. Very, very lost.
I met a guy playing volleyball. When an early “we should grab drinks” came my way, I artfully (or so I thought) dodged it by not acknowledging it’s existence. At our next interaction, our conversation took a turn for the, well, feisty.
(And if you don’t know me, feisty is NOT a good thing. I do not enjoy intense debates. I do not enjoy having someone push my buttons, seemingly intentionally. It is rare to get a real rise out of me and not a thing I enjoy.)
Unfortunately this individual found one of my soft spots. And pushed. My parents are educators. I have several degrees and am a self-proclaimed education snob. I highly value my university education, particularly for my field. If you want to piss me off, tell me that a college degree is a waste of money and time.
This eventually this turned into a hour-plus slightly-raised voice (super abnormal for me) heated philosophical argument about the inherent value of a graduate education.
A couple things to highlight:
- The moment I responded to him interrupting me with the words “If you want to have an actual conversation about this, as you claim, you need to let me finish a sentence.”
- When he continued to interrupt me and I stopped talking and raised my hand as if waiting to be called on in class. It did get him to stop for a minute at least.
- And when he kept trying to make this a fun debate, touching my arm and I finally said “Don’t touch me.“
Yep. I was standing there, defensive crossed arms, no smile on my face uttering the words “Don’t touch me.” Out loud. Not fun sexy time, right? Most certainly not playful banter.
Then I wake up to a long text from him. I have highlighted two portions for you:
- Ummmmmmm…. what? Were you in the same convo that I was? You LIKED that hell?
- Also *you’re. Ugh. Grammar.
Also for your consideration:
- Compliments? After declaring earlier in the evening that you were smarter than me and didn’t need a degree for that? (Unless that was negging? I don’t get negging.)
- No, I am not willing to compromise my integrity to get approval from others. Who does that? What kind of people are you meeting?
- And no. Just no.
Everything about my body language and actual words said no. So you ask me out?
I am honestly baffled. How could any of that have been misconstrued as flirting?
– – – – –
Basically, no one knows how to flirt.
That is what I’m learning.
Or doesn’t know how to read that people are flirting with or at them.
Or at least when I am flirting (or anti-flirting), it makes no sense to my intended target.
Or maybe I just have not idea how to flirt in a way that anyone understands. Le sigh.
Maybe I should go back to the elementary school route and punch someone on the shoulder then run away? That seems solid.
I think I’m a hopeless cause.
So good luck to all you who go into the world and get your flirt on today. I wish you understanding and reciprocity from your target.
That is all.