Average Jane

Deconstructing Him

I saw him again. And this time I had a witness.

So infrequently do we get second chances in life that when Carrie M. invited me to meet her for coffee, I didn’t even consider the fact I could see him again. As we sat and talked about work and love and life, someone caught my eye. Small frame, moderately aloof, chatting on his cell phone. It was him.

“Hey there.” I said loud enough to get his attention without being too obnoxious in interrupting his conversation.

“Oh.. hey, can I call you back, I just saw… I’ll call you back.” He came to our table. Sat down.

With my eyes, I convey to Carrie that this is *him*. The guy. Mr. Impossible. She seemed to understand.

His eyes were still piercing, just as I remembered them. His lips still perfect. What I didn’t remember was his name. Naturally he had remembered mine. The “guess my name” game lasted an awkward moment too long before he revealed his completely innocuous name: something far more vanilla than it should be. His name should be “Rain” or “Timex” or something as unique as he is.

The conversation was awkward. He asked the most peculiar questions that you could tell he already knew the answers to. He seemed like he kind of knew everything.

[Editorial Note: I’ll let Carrie M. tell you about the COMPLETELY RAD way I got him to get my contact info. I was so proud of myself. That being said (here’s a spoiler) I totally fucked up and texted him tonight. Idiot. As I said to a friend, when it comes to men, “my retardedness runs deep.”]

He had a book to buy, and so we went separate ways long enough to have a discussion about what made him so… striking. “I have a theory on men with a cleft chin,” said the fabulous Miss Carrie M. “They are all absolutely gorgeous.” She promised to expound on this theory on her blog (which you all should be reading, bitches). But what she said next is what struck me:

“He’s pretty.”

Yes! That is exactly it! He is so striking… so intriguing… so gorgeous… because of his features. Feminine features.

I remembered that in my “Psychology of Romantic Relationships” class in college, we learned about male attractiveness. Let me quote:

Male attractiveness [is] complex. Men who have strong jaw bones and broad foreheads — who look strong and dominant — are usually thought to be more handsome. On the other hand, one study has shown that when average male faces are made slightly more feminine through computer imaging, the “feminized” faces … are more attractive.

“Intimate Relationships” (Third Edition) by Brehm, Miller, Perlman, and Campbell

Later in the book, the authors also asserts that this may change based on a woman’s ovulation cycle. Women apparently like more “handsome” masculine men while they are ovulating vs. “warmer, friendler” feminine men the rest of the month. That seems pretty evolutionary to me. Stronger looking men seem more virile and potent and spermful. They look like they can protect you and your spawn, no? But the rest of the month we want “the nice guy”… the one who is like our best girlfriend but who wants to sleep with us. (Oy. I can see the porn comments now. Moving on…)

I think that’s exactly what I was experiencing. Would I have walked up to him in a bar wearing my hottest outfit looking… fertile? And up for it? Probably not. But meeting him at coffee shop where he listened to me, talked to me, looked into me… it made me melt.

Want to know how things ended? A hug. But he offered to take me to a coffee shop he’d mentioned and I asked him to go to an Indian place he also recommended. And he said yes. If only I didn’t have diarrhea of the finger (hyper-textability) I have had a chance.

I may have shot myself in the dating foot. Again.

Ooh, I do so love “To be continueds…”

UPDATE: You didn’t have to wait too long for the update. Just about 10 minutes, actually. Since I’m a happy little stalker, I checked out “the facebooks” and saw that as of September 29th… he’s listed as “in a relationship.”

See “The guy with the girlfriend.Because my life sucks.

UPDATE2: Last night I got a text at 11:48. It was him. I played it cool. Pithy response. Breezy. If I ignored one, he wrote again. I woke up to an e-mail from him, and when I responded (breezy… totally breezy…) I heard from him again. So confused. SO CONFUSED!


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  1. * TSG says:

    Who says that he updated his relationship status on the 29th? He could have edited something else. That status could be months/years old. He did cut off a conversation when he saw you. That’s worth something. Don’t lose it yet.

    He did cut off a conversation when he saw me. But I also know that it was on September 29th that he changed his status to “in a relationship” and even listed her name. Perhaps he’s going through the same thing I went through before. Who knows.

    | Reply Posted 10 years, 6 months ago
  2. * jess says:

    I hope it works out for you! And b/c I’m a geek, I’ve heard of similar studies about male attractiveness. Consider this: college-age women were more likely to date an average-looking, even overweight guy over a svelte, ripped guy b/c they thought the former would be more loyal long-term. That’s got evolution written all over it. I kinda feel sorry for pretty boys….

    | Reply Posted 10 years, 6 months ago
  3. * carrie m says:

    I can’t stop laughing over here at some of this – not the in a relationship part though. My post is coming shortly for my side of the story, which still continues to be awesome.

    what in the christ did you text him? i knew i should have called you last night b/c i was feeling bad that maybe i stayed too long or something. and he wouldn’t have gotten your number and asked you out if he was in a relationship. it just doesn’t make sense.

    email me with the text breakdown. my enquiring mind wants to know!

    I will write you with all of the text activity, and we will decide how much we can share with the world… mwahaha. You didn’t stay too long at all. It was not a date. It was girls night interrupted.

    The question I have is… when do I bring up the fact that I know he’s in a relationship? Do I “friend” him on facebook so he knows that I’ve seen the “status”?

    | Reply Posted 10 years, 6 months ago
  4. * Hey Pretty says:

    Text messaging will bring the downfall of Western Civilization, and you can totally quote me on that. I cringe thinking about the number of relationship flubs I have created via text message.

    I’m just curious to know why? Is it the quasi-anonymity of it all (vs. phone call)? The immediacy? Why can’t we stop ourselves?

    | Reply Posted 10 years, 6 months ago
  5. * Robin says:

    I see no problem with you having texted him, albeit letting him text you back and e-mail you is good:) Maybe play this out a bit more, until you can ask him when his last relationship was, or? Who knows just what that means for him, and if he’s really taken by you and YOU will be his everything? Eh, I don’t know, but I like the romantic thought of it:) What’s life if you don’t LIVE it a bit?

    | Reply Posted 10 years, 6 months ago
  6. * freckledk says:

    I have to know the content of the texts before I am able to offer up any helpful comments.

    | Reply Posted 10 years, 6 months ago
  7. * carrie m says:

    what are you confused about? he’s interested! clearly! and i think the texts are SFB (Safe For Blog).

    | Reply Posted 10 years, 6 months ago
  8. * freckledk says:

    But Carrie – If he isn’t single, he may be more into the “idea” of being able to date her, as opposed to actually dating her. Unless he picks up the phone and asks her out, she should consider him uninterested. It’s easier on Jane that way.

    It doesn’t mean he doesn’t like her, of course. But, to him, she’s forbidden fruit, unchartered waters, greener grass, etc. Something to daydream about, but not to actually pursue.

    That’s just my opinion – I need to see the texts, which are waiting for me when I get home.

    | Reply Posted 10 years, 6 months ago
  9. * shadi says:

    i personally believe if a boy is texting you and emailing you (aka making any effort to give you attention) regardless if he’s in a relationship, it means that he is either phasing out of the relationship or he’s a low-life cheater or he wants his cake (stable relationship) and to eat it to (flirt and have sexy time with you).

    hopefully it’s the first one and soon he will be out of said relationship and YOUR facebook status will be “in a relationship.” with him, that is.

    am i moving too fast? i just say it how it is.

    | Reply Posted 10 years, 6 months ago
  10. * carrie m says:

    fk – i am clearly too naive to have those thoughts you so eloquently put down. and thoughts that are absolutely correct. i forget that these kinds of sharks are out in the waters with the rest of us pretty angelfish.

    | Reply Posted 10 years, 6 months ago
  11. * christina says:

    My thoughts- I think he is interested. The relationship thing… i don’t know. I asked a good friend( a guy) and he said it has never occured to him to update his relationship in facebook until his “other” reminds him to do so. He also said, and i quote, ” just because he was in a relationship when he met you does not mean you aren’t better for him than current girl. The world is strange and just by chance he could really be more into you than her…”….

    i say play it cool( as you are doing) and let him pursue you… then ask the question.

    | Reply Posted 10 years, 6 months ago

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