Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Talk To Me

In the five years since we met I had never seen him as anything more than a short (5'9"), obnoxious, constantly inebriated Jamaican who made an unsuccessful attempt to woo my best friend. All characteristics I try to avoid in men. Then one night, as the hours mounted on my cell phone screen, I found myself drawn to him and thinking to myself, "Maybe..." He wasn't saying anything special, but I didn't want to get off the phone. One topic flowed smoothly into the next with nary an akward silence. We finished each other's sentences and traded sarcastic one liners, claiming, "You left yourself open for that one." Even when my bladder was about to burst I couldn't bear to put him on hold for a moment and break the steady rhythm of conversation and laughter. After four hours and countless "I should go to bed"s that turned into another half hour of chatter we managed to hang up. Pressing END, I no longer thought about all that was wrong with him and considered the possibility that he could just be Mr. Right.
More than five months of melodramatic bullshit proved that he was all wrong for me. Still, as I sat across the restaurant table from my date with The White Boy two weeks ago I found myself missing that Alcoholic West Indian. The date wasn't bad. In fact it could actually be considered good. Yummy food, lots of compliments, funny jokes, no embarassing mishaps. However, something imperceptible was askew. Actually, that something was so indiscernable that I don't think he noticed anything was kind of off. Although the only time we weren't talking was when our mouths were full of pasta or steak, for me the conversation was still lacking. Sure, he asked questions and I answered in detail. He told me all about combat in Iraq, bootcamp, and his many military maneuvers. We got to know each other.
And that was the problem. It wasn't a conversation. It was an info dump. While most of what I learned about The Whiteboy was definitely interesting, it was nothing I wanted to know right away. I understand that the purpose of a first date is for two people to get to know each other and I'm fine with that. But for me, getting to know someone should be like a mining for diamonds. The thrill lies in the unexpected discoveries that are buried underneath the superficial sand. Where's the fun if everything is presented up front?
As he told me how attractive he thought I was I couldn't help but think to myself, The Alcoholic West Indian wouldn't say that. And when he recounted tales from his misguided youth I thought, The Alcoholic West Indian would save that story for a later date. Then I racked my brain to figure out what The Alcoholic West Indian actually would talk about and it finally hit me. NOTHING!
The entire reason why I fell for The Alcoholic West Indian's short, obnoxious, constantly inebriated ass in the first place was the exact same reason I fell for The Idiot Who Made Me Cry. We could spend hours talking about absolutely nothing. From the physics behind deoderant chunks on armpit hair to the unending quotables uttered by my future husband Jay-Z we could talk about anything without ever having tell each other about ourselves. Who we are came through loud and clear so there was no reason to ask or answer any questions. And if a certain topic led to the telling of a personal story that was great, but nothing was ever told just to have something to say.
Don't get me wrong, I did have fun on my date with The Whiteboy. We even hung out the very next day and I'll probably spend more time with him in the future. But it won't go anywhere. Chemistry is created in conversation and he just doesn't know how to talk to me.

4 comments:

jali said...

I know EXACTLY what you mean. I don't like date interviews - if the conversation doesn't flow then to me it follows that the physical side won't either.

mist1 said...

I don't want someone that knows how to talk to me or listen to me. Is it too much to ask for someone who can tune me out and yet still feed me compliments?

Diane Mandy said...

Sometimes people can be nervous on first dates and they talk way too much. Maybe after the second??

RebeLioness said...

The term rebound wasn't born out of thin air. It's inevitable that when we try to get to know someone new while still not quite over someone old, they really don't stand a chance. Comparisons are made probably when and where they shouldn't be, and the only thing that sticks out like a sore thumb are there flaws. I'm not saying you shouldn't date, I'm saying you shouldn't expect much from dating at this point until you can go about it with no expectations...if that makes sense. :-)