Begrudging Company

So, I have been having an email exchange with another potential date for the past few days. He is rather funny, seems normal and is not terrible looking but admittedly not the type of guy I would normally go for. But you know, well….you just never know. That’s the point. Apparently.

Thus far the conversation has revolved around really terrible tv shows, clean carpets, scratched floorboards and of course the inevitable “what do you do?”, which too his credit did not occur until email #4 so, I consider it to be pretty good going to have each other laughing for 4 entire emails before we even get down to the fall-back lines. That could be the equivalent of as much as 2 dates before we have to fall back on “so, nice weather we’re having”.

The problem with me always is, I am not nearly as funny and witty verbally as I am on paper (electronic or otherwise). But I can still hold a conversation. The problem with them is that there is often something fairly major that prevents me from feeling anything resembling a connection substantial enough to prompt any further date action on my part.

For instance, recently I had contact from a guy whose profile I admit did not really seem to gel too well with mine-Red flag #1. His profile photos were all locked and his profile stated that his “photos are hidden because I’m a private person, not because I’m physically challenged”- Red flag #2. He asked me to give him access to my photos but did not give me access to his- Red flag #3. His email, though it was only 4 sentences long, was so boring I felt myself nodding off halfway through- Red flag #4. He finally gave me access to his photos and he looks like his skin has never seen sunlight and the size of his paunch suggests he does not engage in too much physical activity on even the most remote definition of “regular basis”.

The penny drops.

Either his “Physically challenged” statement was some attempt at sarcasm, OR, when he refers to not being physically challenged he means simply that he is physically capable of doing exercise…should he ever want to, which of course is likely to be (judging by the photos), never.

I know that sounds shallow, I really do. But Im not shallow, am I?! I mean surely after two of the most boring emails in the world, and the fact that having scanned his profile to the nth degree the only similarity I could find was that he likes to read biographies, I am entitled to conclude that perhaps this man is not a good match, even without having met him in the flesh (of which there is plenty)? But no, I feel obliged to continue with the farce, especially after he made such a big deal out of revealing the photos, clearly he a)knows he was lying through his keyboard keys and b)he’s shy and quite sensitive about the whole issue. Will I be contributing to sending what seems to be an over worked, lonely 30-something into a downward spiral of manic depression because I cyber-ditch him the moment he reveals his billowy snowy-white physique?

I feel the pressure may be too much to bear. You see, this stems from my inability to ignore big puppy-dog eyes. Do you remember those Ren&Stimpy cartoons, vile things that they were, well, whenever Ren (I think it was Ren?) had to coerce he would get those big round cartoon eyes. Or perhaps a better example is Puss-in-Boots in the Shrek movies. Despite the fact that they are merely cartoon characters, I feel a little internal tug and then an overwhelming impulse to grab the nearest puppy/kitten, etc and hug it until I have regained my composure.

Do you know that impulse?

Well, it’s that same impulse that prevents me from standing up and walking out on a jerk in the middle of his curry and his beer and his offensive tirade, or getting in my car and leaving a drunken disorderly date standing in the carpark without any other option but to go home because he cannot get back into the pub without a sober companion. And it’s the same impulse that seems to prevent me from just telling someone that no, I do not wish to go on date with you, we are not a good match, but thanks anyway.

I call it “The Pushover Syndrome”.  More commonly known as “Being Spineless”.

The website itself doesn’t help, in the “tips to online dating” guide they tell you not to be too presumptuous, say yes to everything, you cant know a person well enough to reject them until you have been on at least 2 dates, etc….  That is, they guilt you into it.

So, judging by previous experience I will begrudgingly go on the date and will come home (as early as possible) feeling all “woe is me I could have missed an opportunity to be on a date with the potential man of my dreams because I couldn’t say no to the guy who doesn’t understand the meaning of “active”, despite his journalist credentials”.  Or more likely “Woe is me, I missed the latest episode of Offspring for that.” I could have been basking in the love of my Sisterhood and bonding with a fictional character whose fictional life uncannily resembles my own -except that I no longer work with The Gorgeous Man, but I did and thus I understand her fictional pain. Oh and in her life The Gorgeous Man does like her back, actually.  (So I guess in fact, her life resembles mine naught.  But then, it is fiction.)

I fear I am doomed to spending the rest of my life sitting through one excruciating date after another.

On the bright side, this is surely going to help me to learn to appreciate my own company above any other?

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