I Have the Perfect Guy for You…
My High School Buddy’s Wife’s Cousin

Monday, September 28, 2009
I got the nicest email ever, in which a high school buddy laid out why he thinks he has a great guy for me, after complimenting the blog. The thing that’s so nice about it is he actually thought about why this guy would be a good match for me, instead of the usual "you’re both single".

The referral has the usual pros:

  • He is by far the nicest person I have ever met and has a heart of gold
  • I think you guys would have a lot in common
  • He is 34-36 and recently got his Masters
  • He loves running and traveling
And then references to things that I would definitely find attractive:
  • He was a college track star and loves everything outdoors
  • He worked while he made way through his Masters program
  • He "might" be able to match [me] intellectually and has a very witty sense of humor
  • He meets [my] requirement of drinking a good ol' PBR from a mug and throwing darts
He even gets the super secret bonus points! This guy loves soccer. There are three things I personally hate but know my future mate will love. One of them is Soccer.

The only rub is that he’s kind of far away. When I MapQuested where my buddy lives it turns out its 427 miles from Chicago. Yikes.

I was offered a photo, which I declined, I assume someone I know wouldn’t try to set me up with a troll. And I said of course I would meet him. How could I say no? My buddy said "I just caught myself reading your blog and thought of [him] right away".

You know who is the nicest guy ever? My high school buddy. I’m not sure whether I’ll hit it off with his wife’s cousin, but I’m certainly willing to give it a try. Even it means driving to the middle of nowhere to go on a double date.

Crushed: Bus Guy has a Girlfriend

Wednesday, September 23, 2009
The most important question you should be asking is how do I know this? Easy, I asked Bus Guy out. That’s right, terrifying though it may seem, just 36 hours after I introduced myself to my crush I went a step further and actually asked him whether he wanted to grab drinks.

Now you should be asking, how did that happen? Well at the suggestion of two different guy pals I was planning to lay it all on the line and ask Bus Guy out the next time I ran into him at the bus stop. And then he was on my bus home, which he almost never is. After a quick touch up on my make-up and pep talk from a friend I went and sat across from him on the bus to strike up conversation. Public transportation banter completed, one stop before his (which is one stop before mine), I just asked him out. He said he had a girlfriend, so that probably wouldn’t be a good idea, but that it was really nice of me to ask. I said, don’t even worry about it, and then he got off the bus.

Finally you ask, how are you feeling now that your crush is no more? Surprisingly, I feel absolutely fine. I don’t feel rejected, I’m really proud of myself for taking the initiative and most importantly I’m excited that I can stop going to the bus stop at such an annoying time.

Like E. said, "Right now it’s all in your head, not in your heart". She’s right, I don’t even know him, and I shouldn’t waste any more time stressing about running into him and trying to strike up conversations.

Even now, a full day after the fact, the only thing that bums me out about it is that I don’t have a crush anymore. Don’t worry, I will soon enough.

The Turning Point: I Met Bus Guy!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009
So the GREAT news is that I met Bus Guy this week, officially. It was on Monday and my brain was having a hard time getting going thanks to a completely overbooked weekend. I’m standing at the stop, where it seems a lot of people are milling around, and notice Bus Guy walking over.

My initial thought is "shit". I’m not really in the mood to put myself out there, I haven’t even had coffee yet, but I’ve been trying to run into him for weeks and I can’t squander my opportunity.

I dawdle, though, and when a set of buses rolls up I’m thinking I’m going to miss my chance entirely. But then I get a break. Bus Guy ends up on my bus! He’s a few people behind me but instead of staying towards the front of the bus like he normally does he walks all the way to the back and sits kitty-korner from me. I seize my second chance moment and introduce myself. He smiles, we shake hands, and he introduces himself back. I was right about his name.

We didn’t do a tremendous amount of chatting, but that’s fine with me. Now that we’ve met I will be able to walk up to him and say things like, "Hey, what’s going on?", and then conversation will ensue, followed by a phone number exchange, dinner, etc. Or so I thought.

Here comes the BAD news. First, I was a little off on "our" bus time. Turns out it’s about 5-7 minutes after I thought it was, which could account for why I kept missing him. The time he’s actually there is a time which causes me to be late to my standing morning meeting and involves up to 30 or so other people standing around waiting and then cramming themselves onto the first bus that arrives. It’s the kind of bus scene I normally avoid.

Second, we don’t stand in the same area of the bus stop. One of us has to walk over to where the other one is to chat. It’s hard to walk over to someone without making eye contact, and that brings me to today’s issue.

We didn’t make eye contact. Catching someone’s glance can be tricky, at least without making it look like you’re staring them down trying to make eye contact (which I obviously try to avoid). This morning we probably wasted 5 whole minutes of potential getting to know each other time while he read a stupid paper and I drank coffee and tried to catch his glance. And then we didn’t even get on the same bus!

I’m a little disappointed, but I’m not going to abandon ship. I will endure the obnoxiousness of "our" bus time until we have a positive interaction. Besides, if I was right about his name I’m probably right about everything else :-)

Meet Me at the Bus Stop

Saturday, September 19, 2009
Being rejected for a sports drink seems to have struck a nerve with readers (I had my first non-friend comment!). One commenter suggested that perhaps Lunge Guy had seen the error of his ways after the fact, and had gone so far as to write about it in the Missed Connections section on CraigsList.

I immediately checked, and I found a posting from a girl who had kissed a German dude in lederhosen. She had gotten farther than I, giving him her number, but there seemed to be a mishap involving his “German hands” and her work phone not accepting text messages. Other than inappropriate sausage references, that was it for German Fest postings.

And then I had a brilliant thought. What if Bus Guy reads the Missed Connection section? I almost never do, but if he has any insight into me like I do into him then maybe he knows I can’t turn away from the madness that is CL personals. I need to put a posting there.

Meet Me at the Bus Stop
South Loop neighbor crush
shared bus stop, random chit-chat
hoping to meet you

I see you at the bus stop, and sometimes around the area, and although we’ve exchanged a few pleasantries we haven’t actually met. A few weeks ago you said Good Morning to me and I should have introduced myself right then.

But I didn't, and I’ve been trying to run into you again so we can properly meet. Unfortunately I haven't seen you so I'm hoping maybe we can cross paths via the Internet. If you see this, please email me... or sit next to me on the bus so we can chat.

Don't Take the Lead
if You Don't Want to be Followed

Monday, September 14, 2009
Last Saturday I had one of those experiences I never get to have myself but am constantly hearing about from other people. I met someone, randomly, and we hit it off.

I was at German Fest with a gal pal and we crossed paths with this guy when I was hopping around near the speakers and the polka band. He basically made fun of me, turning my obvious polka moves into lunges. We chatted briefly and then went our separate ways. He kept popping up, though, culminating in an unbelievably fun (and advanced) polka dancing bonanza. I felt like something was really starting for me.

And then I got dissed. Instead of my getting my phone number he went to the 7Eleven to get Gatorade.

When it happened I was really hurt. I felt like I wasn’t desirable and couldn’t read guy signals and that I should just throw in the towel altogether. I had also drank two and a half large steins of beer. So the next morning I thought about it again and you know what, I’m still kind of hurt.

I put myself out there, more than I normally do, but I was basically following his lead. He was clearly interested and so was I. I even went so far as to suggest that he call me sometime. He says, while holding his phone, that he doesn’t have my number… in fact he doesn’t know my name. So we exchange names and then for whatever reason he just bails.

Maybe this is how guys feel all the time, taking the lead and putting themselves out there, thinking they’re making progress only to get abandoned at last call. Maybe I’ve been that girl and I’ve been insensitive or unaware to their pain all these years.

To my credit, I didn’t try to lead anyone on on purpose. And Lunge Guy, he did do it on purpose, finding me over and over during the fest. I mean, he taught me the words to "Take Me Home, Country Roads". We did a dip during our dancing!

I guess the point of this rant is that no one should be leading anyone else on. If you aren’t available then you shouldn’t be doing things that indicate (a) you are available and (b) you are interested. Don’t see if you’ve still got the moves, don’t walk the thin line between having fun with a stranger and cheating on your actual significant other and don’t invite someone to polka. Dancing is surprisingly personal, it requires really focusing on your dance partner and trusting them.

Fortunately there’s a silver lining to this night, besides the delicious potato salad, and it’s that I’m a pretty good dancer. I think I’m going to make a pretty good girlfriend, too, as soon as I find the right partner.

The Crush

Wednesday, September 9, 2009
I have been holding out on you, dear readers, as I have been harboring a serious crush on a guy who lives in my neighborhood. I didn't bring him up earlier because for awhile I hadn't seen him. I was actually getting worried he had moved away but fortunately that is not the case. Bus Guy, as he is affectionately known, has reappeared on the scene and my romantic interest in him remains strong. Here’s the scoop.

The History: Shortly after I moved to my neighborhood I noticed a gentleman at my bus stop. While he seems sort of unfriendly, I can tell that he’s not only nice, but funny once you get to know him. I quickly developed a crush on this man, obviously dubbed “bus guy”. We sometimes exchanged acknowledgment glances but never really met. One time my drunk friend invited him to join us at our table at a local bar. He declined, unfortunately. One time he said hello to me out of nowhere at the grocery store. We chatted briefly. One time he came around the corner with dry cleaning while I was standing chatting with my running friend. I had been talking but then lost my train of thought and then as he walked past there was ridiculous giggling.

What I Know: I know which condo Bus Guy lives in and the usual time he gets on the bus. He gets off a few blocks before me and then walks to his office, which I have narrowed down to a two block area (a mere three or four blocks from my own office!). I’m not stalking him! Sometimes I see him walking while I am on the bus.

What I Think I Know: I think he’s an engineer and that sometimes he travels for work. I think his name is Mark or Matt or Jim or Greg... something fairly regular. I think he’s older than me but younger than 35. I think he might be an only child but he may also be a middle child. I think his parents are from Michigan or Wisconsin. I think if he played a sport in high school it may have been wrestling.

The Latest: Recently Bus Guy appeared again, predictably at our bus stop. Just two Fridays ago, he smiled and said Good Morning to me. I should have just introduced myself then but I was taken by surprise, plus I was running late and had to get on the bus (without him). So now I am hoping to run into him again soon and I am planning to introduce myself. The last week or so I have been thwarted, although I have regularly been at the bus stop at what will now be known as our usual time.

I will not be deterred, though. I can’t wait to tell you all about him. When I meet him, of course.

He Likes Me Not…
I Like Him Not, Too.

Sunday, September 6, 2009
Miami implant
he likes me he likes me not
just not interested

Sometimes you go on a date that doesn’t so much go wrong as much as nothing really goes right. I just went on that date.

First things first, the looks department. He wasn’t a troll, but he was definitely not as cute as his photo, and he was medium attractive at best from what I had seen in the picture. I was hoping he’d be cuter in person. He was also kind of sloppily dressed, loose grey t-shirt, messy hair. I wasn’t fancy but I was put together, I mean, I had lip gloss on.

Onto the (much more important) personal interaction. He wasn’t boring, but he wasn’t particularly engaging while we chatted, either. I thought there were a few opportunities where our conversation could have gotten better - like when he told me about his work, which I found really interesting (and said so), but then he just asked me about my work instead of elaborating about his. And then when I mentioned I had a friend who went to the same college he did and also was in a similar major it didn’t even register with him. We didn’t have to play the name game or anything, but by not even responding to the statement it came off like he wasn’t really listening to me.

Although unrelated to how I felt about my date, I also only felt medium about the actual brunch. The coffee was kind of weird and while my eggs were decent the sweet potato hash browns were not. Bonus restaurant review: Hashbrowns 2 ½ stars.

We parted semi-awkwardly, he said thanks for meeting him and I said thanks for brunch, and then we just stood there. I finally said something like "okay, well be in touch", and headed to the parking garage.

We won't, though, be in touch that is. Seems neither of us was really that interested in each other after all. All's well that ends well.

He Likes Me… Again

Wednesday, September 2, 2009
Remember that guy that sent all the mixed signals, seemingly interested but then disappearing or being vague about making plans? (See He Likes Me… He Likes Me Not?) Well, he’s back! And he seems interested for real this time.

This past weekend I put up a post on CraigsList and he responded, seemingly not aware that he was writing to someone he had chatted with before. I replied back, referencing the aforementioned chatting and that I had gotten the impression he wasn’t that interested. I said I wasn’t sure how to proceed.

He replied back that he did remember me, explaining that his earlier disappearing act was because he was taking a summer class and really busy and claiming that he couldn't really recognize me in the photo I‘d posted on CL and wasn‘t sure I‘d even sent him pictures before. He asked if I’d be interested in getting together and suggested lunch over the weekend.

I can believe that he had a busy schedule over the summer - dating takes a lot of flexibility - but I think the likely scenario is that he was pursuing someone else, whether or not he was taking a night class. I don’t necessarily buy the not recognizing me from my photo, though. I take a lot of pride in posting flattering, but realistic photos of myself when online dating.

I was intrigued, though, and since I happened to be available I accepted his offer. We’ve emailed a few times this week and I have both his home and cell phone numbers so I’m feeling pretty positive we’re going to make it to the first date. Stay tuned readers.