This weekend CamronZoe is tired. Not of writing, but just tired all together. I am taking a little hiatus. I have some running around to do and a few cakes to bake. Because I am all about sharing the wealth, I couldn’t stand to leave you without a blog. So I called up some friends who owed me favors, and put their writing skills to work. I hope you enjoy the dating antics of two of my most entertaining friends Lady Londa, and CherylV.
I am out at a family-owned Caribbean bar in the University area of Charlotte, North Carolina with one of my friends, Bridget, when I spot a cutie.
I point him out to Bridget, who knows him. Well. She says this has to be at least the third time I’ve met him, but somehow I overlooked him at those first couple of meetings. Surely I’ve seen him in a suit, she says. And surely he looked lovely, but I don’t remember him being in the room.
The evening I finally take note of him, he’s strutting around in a T-shirt and jeans. He’s over six, easy. And his back seems particularly broad, his waist quite narrow. And he’s singing….he’s happy, I guess. I turn around and look at this truly beautiful singing specimen and realize he’s got the clearest brown complexion and the prettiest teeth and smile I’ve seen in a while.
How the hell did I miss this?
I lean over to Bridget – a longtime friend of his – and ask for the run-down.
Bridget: “Who? Marcus?” She leans forward to make sure she’s got the right man. “You’re so predictable.”
Me: “Yes, I know. Now, about this one singing over here…..”
Bridget: “Good dude. Family man. Good character. I’ve known him forever. Was looking for a girlfriend last I heard.” She shrugs as if there is a plethora of men who look as good as he does and fit this description.
So I turn around, smile big, enhance my below – the – Mason – Dixon accent, and make conversation. After a hilarious evening, I end up catching a ride home with Marcus, who drops Bridget off first. Turns out he lives up the block from me.
Marcus pulls in front of my house, and we continue chatting as he double – parks. It’s late. I should get out of the truck and carry myself inside like the good Southern belle I am. But I can’t. He’s pure comedy. He has no self – censor button. It’s like whatever he thinks, he says. It’s crass, obnoxious, offensive, and amazingly delivered, all the traits of a good comedian. It’s the funniest conversation I have had in I can’t remember how long. And it’s like a tennis match. No matter what I serve, he throttles it right back to me. (A very well – known romance author once described good conversation as verbal sex. She was right.)
Somehow we get on the topic of exes and why neither one of us is seeing anyone seriously. He ask me what my type is. I hesitate, because I’m not trying to gas him by telling him that he is the epitome of my type – physically, at least. I try to change the subject. He’s not budging. Eventually, I tell him my ideal: Chocolate (check-plus), over six feet (check), clean-cut (check-plus), pretty teeth (check-plus), funny (check-plus), and alpha male (loose definition: if you were a lion and you were in the jungle, all the other lions would listen when you roar-oh, this is a check, too).
Marcus laughs. Smiles. (Sigh.) And just before I think I will melt where I sit, he says in all humorless seriousness, “Well, you must be going crazy right now, then, huh?”
I am. But I’ll never tell him that.
Marcus calls. I call back. We hang out once, he never calls after. I thought he was digging me, but I learn through the grapevine (i.e., Bridget) that he’s actually not looking for a “wifey,” which he thinks I am. That is that.
We end up as the same venue at the same time again a couple of weekends later. Marcus sees me, comes by, chats me up….then flirts?
“Hey, Cheryl.” He flashes his bright white, braces-perfect teeth. “You dancing tonight?” he asks.
Me: “I might.”
Him: “If you’re dancing, I’ll dance with you.”
Another flash of that smile. I am a sucker for a smile, and it’s hard for me to not to sigh where I sit.
Me: “Nah I’m good. Thanks, though.”
I brush him off – not to be mean but to respect the parameters he’s defined. He isn’t interested, so why the mixed signals?
Marcus chats for a few minutes more, then heads off for a destination unknown somewhere inside the bar. Through a series of events, Bridget ends up asking him to take use back to our side of town. I’d prefer not to ride with him, but I have no other options at this point. Marcus and I are cool, right? There are no hard feelings. This should be no problem.
Marcus comes to the front of the room to tell me he’s ready to bounce in ten. I wait fifteen before I gather my stuff and say my goo d-byes, because I know he’s lying. Finally, he comes to the front of the bar, be he’s chilling. I’m all ready to go, but I take a seat and wait for his cue. I’m at his mercy since he’s driving us.
He takes a spot three feet in front of me and then proceeds to bag a chick right there. Intentionally? Eh, I’m not sure. I admit, it stings. Like, dude made it pretty clear where he stood on the subject of me – which I respect – but this is a little inconsiderate, no? I have no right to say anything about this, so I check myself, enjoy what’s left of the party, and ignore him.
So he seals the deal and says he’s ready to go. Oh, and we’re dropping Bridget off first.
“Is that a problem?” he asks.
I cock my head. “Why would it be?”
He shrugs. “Just checking.”
In the car, I take shotgun, Bridget takes the back. Marcus begins to complain how there were no cute women at the party, and he was looking for some, too, Er?
I ignore him, because now I realize that hollering at the chick right in front of me was very intentional, and for whatever reason, Marcus is trying to push my buttons. I will NOT give Marcus the reaction he is looking for. Bridget has no comment for him, either. She and I start our own conversation…..which Marcus interrupts to talk about how many women were after him tonight. I don’t get it. I’m in the passenger seat, trying to figure out what I did to dude for him to be so rude right now. He made it clear he wasn’t interested. He didn’t call. That’s all the hint I need. I didn’t call him, didn’t harass him, didn’t make a scene when I saw him again. I didn’t say anything about it. Just moved on. That’s what adults do right? Then I wonder if I really have anything to do with how he’s reacting. He could have always been a douche and I didn’t see it till now. It’s not as if we really got to know each other.
We drop off Bridget at her apartment complex, and as soon as she’s up the stairs and inside. Marcus starts to complain about his shoulder. He asks me to massage it for him.
I’m done. Overdone. Outdone. “Jesus, keep me near the cross. Are you kidding me, dude?!” I dramatically throw my hands into the air for emphasis.
“Huh? Why?” He sounds baffled.
I regain some composure, because I’m giving him a reaction, and something tells me that’s all he wants. As calmly as possible, I say, “I am not rubbing some man’s shoulder.”
“I’m some man now?”
“Ummmm……what else would you be but some man?”
“I used to be Marcus.”
I shrug and look at him blankly.
We pull in front of my house. And instead of stopping the car, he parks as if we’re going to chill and chat. I’m confused. What do we have to say to each other? I promptly reach for the door and politely thank him for seeing me home.
“Where are you going?” he asks.
“Um…in my house.”
“Why are you being so mean to me?”
“You don’t even want to talk to me now.”
I thought when he didn’t call, that was the indication that he didn’t want to talk. Is it possible that he is clueless? Either he’s too dumb to know why I’ve fallen back, or he knows and he doesn’t care.
Then I get it.
He doesn’t care that I’m mean. He doesn’t care if I dance. He probably doesn’t even care about the chick he scooped in front of me. And his shoulder probably doesn’t even hurt.
He does care that I’m not interested anymore. A younger me would have mistaken all of his antics for a backward display of interest. I might have got giddy and thought something incredibly stupid, like Oh, wow, he does like me. He’s just fighting it! But I’ve discovered the difference between someone liking me (interest) and someone wanting me to like him (ego). This circumstance would be the latter.
In my most polite voice, I reiterate: “Thank you for the ride. I appreciate it. Have a good night.” And then I get out of the vehicle and sashay upstairs.