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how strange

September 27, 2004

ahem. 8.5 hrs later…

my non-date was today. we met in the lobby of the ritz-carlton, as planned. he did wear a tux–and not just the standard black bowtie ordeal, but one w/an off-white jacket and black tie.

Its hard to describe how i felt the moment i met him b/c it all happened so fast. the concierge, noticing I looked extremely confused and lost, asked if he could assist me. I explained, half-jokingly, that I was looking for a guy in a tux, and I could see the lightbulb go off in his head. Immediately, he bent around the corner and pointed in the direction of Mr. L.


NICKNAME: Ziggy (aka Mr. L–complicated explanation for this nickname, but it has roots in the series Quantum Leap)
STATS: 6’0″ tall, I think. Dark hair, kinda curly-ish, blue eyes, actually has really delicate features. I dont know why the hell i would notice that
COMMENTS: His intelligence is mind-blowing, and not at all pretentious. If I were to open myself to the idea that I could be attracted to him, then my God it would be b/c of his personality. He was funny in a very sophisticated way. And intelligent with such a sharp, witty, easy going sensibility. I have to say that on this level, I was so completely impressed. And he was an amazing listener, as he said. Not someone who is in a hurry to hear what you have to say so that they can tell their story, but you could almost see the wheels turning in his head as he internalized my stories. He also more or less remembered and referred to all these detailed elements in my emails, which blew my mind. For example, he noticed this medium-sized abrasion I have on my elbow and asked if that had happened while rock climbing (something i very briefly mentioned in a passing email). Its a small detail, but illustrates his attentiveness to both me and my emails. Also, he showed up with a gift–not only that, a thoughtful gift. Again, a small mention was made in one of my emails about how I (sarcastically) enjoy sitting in trees eating pomagranates. His gift? A bottle of pomagranate juice. Very very thoughtful. Like I said, I was impressed.

To say we got along well would be an understatement. We got along famously. We spent 8-9 hours just talking and it felt like nothing at all. I mean, thats a full work day if you think about it–and we spent it in the oh-so-posh ritz carlton, sipping tea and eating scones.

I suppose the logical outcome of a nondate like that would be that we plan another “date” and eventually start dating and one thing leads to another, etc. But I have to say that I didnt think of him at all like that. I dont want to say that I automatically placed him in the friend zone, but at the same time, I couldnt even picture us together like that. I just took our interaction at face value–I found him to be interesting, I enjoyed his company, we had fun, we had a lot in common, we laughed…a lot…but more than that–just didnt even cross my mind. And yet, I found myself wanting more. Like I felt like, even after all that time together, that we still had so much to say and do.

In many ways, it was like the seinfeld episode where seinfeld meets the girl version of himself. thats how it felt. it was cool to connect with someone on so many various levels–art, writing, family, career, love–and yet…I sort of felt this–my god we are going to be such amazing friends vibe.

I dunno, i mean i dont want to think about it, and I dont think im denying any feelings bc i thought a lot about scb the entire time, but this guy is so interesting and so amazing, and you can tell so thoughtful and so romantic and so funny and all these things. And all I want from it, really, is that innocent boy-girl friendship that you can have when you are a kid–before the whole sexual tension thing ever enters the picture. Like I guess I want him to be my gay friend w/out being gay sort of thing.

Thats the feeling I got. But I know for him, even though we talked about friendship and even though he asked if i would want to have another friendly gathering w/him at a future date in time, he also said that it wasnt unnatural for him to want to potentially date someone, i.e. me, whom he thought was attractive and who he could have 8 hrs of conversation with. I told him that from my side, it was more a case of when youre not hungry, its hard to decide what you want to eat.

but it was cool that we could just be honest about it. I said that I didnt want there to be that tension or frustration or expectation not being met leading to disappointment type thing between us. that I just wanted us to get to know each other simply b/c we found the other to be interesting or b/c we thought we could benefit from have the other in our life, not bc we were looking to pursue anything. he said he understood and wasnt defensive or childish or pushy about any and/or all of it.

I should also mention that Ziggy had called ahead to tell them that we were celebrating our 50th wedding anniversary. At the end of our tea service, our waitress came out carrying a glass of strawberries and some whipped cream (all fancifully decorated, of course). The plate read, “Happy 50th wedding anniversary” We laughed, she laughed. It was actually very funny.

The date ended, as mentioned, 8-9 hrs later. He walked me to my car (which, btw, was in a garage the complete opposite direction to where he parked) and then we hugged each other, and his was a sincere hug. And then he kind of looked at me, as if he were either dejected or expecting me to say something, but I just said goodbye and that I’d talk to him later.

We didnt really make any future plans to see each other, but danced around the subject of going fishing. Im not sure I want to go fishing just yet with him. In fact, I really dont know what to think. all of this is such a surprise and yet a pleasant one, and yet, Im not really quite sure how to react. its all so disorienting.

I should also mention that I find the fact that he is a writer or that he writes to be extremely fascinating. Maybe a lot of that has to do with the fact that he was set on going to law school, then decided to write instead. Just something about that, in itself, and the fact that he has this other passion is intensely intriguing. He told me his idea for a childrens book–so tender, sad, sentimental and heartwarming all at the same time. I dont think it would be fair to reveal the story, but it was so stunningly brilliant.

Like I said before. Very impressed overall.
But thats where it begins and ends. At least for now.

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