February 4th, 2018

Charah coffee

(no subject)

It may sound weird to say this, considering my first entry about Thomas was rather gush-y, but: Thomas is growing on me. What I haven't said is that I found myself feeling a bit ambivalent about him. He'd been super reticent in his messages, sending these curt messages that made me wonder if he actually liked me. But I chalked it down to a lousy texting style and didn't let it bother me too much, because he's good conversation in person and I'd liked going out with him so far.

Last night was pretty awesome. We went to the ADC Theatre to watch Oresteia, a Greek tragedy that he read in middle school (they make middle school kids read Greek plays in the US?!). Never having read any sort of Greek classics (and not really wanting to), I had no idea what it was about and was expectedly lost during the whole thing. It was still entertaining though; the girl who played the queen was really good.

I liked that, when he went to the bar during the intermission, there was a glass of red wine waiting for me when I rejoined him from the toilet. He spent the intermission making up these 'modern tragedies' starring a law PhD student from Singapore (I wonder who...) and making me laugh, especially when they all ended with me wielding a giant sword and killing everyone in my college's formal hall ('These things always end with a giant sword!' he said). It was also nice, too, when I'd finished my drink in the theatre and he immediately took the glass from me to put it on the floor.

We went to Novi after the play. It was insanely crowded and I think he took 20 minutes to get drinks. When he came back with our drinks, he told me that he was held up by women in low-cut tops. Haha. I should've gone to get those drinks; I probably would have made it back a bit faster than he did.

I liked that he just ordered some random drink without asking me what I'd wanted. I liked that, unlike our second date, I didn't feel pressured to be interesting this time round; it'd definitely felt more comfortable. He was also a lot jokier with me last night than the previous two times. When I was telling him about how I'd never had to work for money, he said, 'I did. I had to work for money. I stripped.' He said it with such a straight face that I might've believed him if he'd said anything else. So naturally I refuted his claim; he retorted, 'You don't believe I can strip for money? Have you seen me twerk?' He certainly has his comedic moments.

Once again, he walked me home before walking to his car. He kissed me good night, gave me a tight squeeze; but didn't ask when I'm free again. Being the over-thinking person that I am, I started to wonder if that meant anything. I mostly stopped wondering when I texted him to thank him for the play and all the drinks that he bought (I didn't pay for anything last night!), and he replied with this story about some drunk British women asking him to drive them home, and I said, 'Super sexy...' and he said, 'Yes you are - super sexy.'

This morning, while I was playing tennis in the bloody frigid wind which dried out my hands so much that my fingers started bleeding, he sent me Part 1 of the play starring me. It was just the cutest thing. It was also pretty well-written with perfect grammar and punctuation, so I am definitely impressed.

This is probably me being impatient, but why hasn't he asked to see me again? Perhaps I will ask this time, since he's asked me out so far.

*

I was thinking about him this morning when I was walking to the tennis club. More specifically, I was thinking about what I find attractive about him. He's not the typical assertive/aggressive, brash, likes to listen to the sound of his own voice Type A type that borders on obnoxious, but he's not the limp and wet beta type either. I think my initial impression of him as the strong, silent type wasn't too far off the mark. He seems quietly confident, quietly assertive, appreciative of what I am without feeling like he pales in comparison to me - no inferiority complex, in other words. This is such a breath of fresh air after dating two guys in a row who think I'm the best thing since sliced bread simply because I'm a Cambridge PhD student. I mean, of course they should think that I am awesome because I am, but my being at Cambridge isn't what makes me awesome; it's only a tiny bit of the larger picture of my awesomeness.

So I like that Thomas doesn't seem over-awed by my CV. It's probably because he could've been a student himself if he'd accepted his Cambridge offer, so to him, it's not some crazy thing that only crazy-smart people do. And I like that because I want to be worshipped for reasons other than my random CV, so it's nice to go out with someone who can see past that.

Above all else, though, he is, quite simply, a real man. It's not just the fact that he's fit as hell, though that definitely contributes to my assessment of the realness of his manhood (not in a perverse way, however; I definitely wouldn't know just yet). It's also the way he's smart and curious about the world and confident, the way he's comfortable in his own skin without feeling like he needs to brag about his achievements, or to show off. I like that he reads, I like that he works out, I like that he's doing a part-time PhD because he doesn't want to do nothing after he reaches retirement age with the military. He's a real man because he's actually got his shit together; unlike the previous two guys I dated, he's got his shit together.

I mean, I am befuddled by why he didn't make any move of any kind when we were practically glued to each other when we sat really close on the window-facing bench in Novi and didn't insinuate a self-invitation to mine last night; but I think he said that he missed me when I met him at the theatre (I think, and I hope that I heard right), and I suppose I shouldn't be surprised when a man seems to not want to overstep boundaries after I'd told him that I'm 'conservative' and that I would like to get to know him more before taking things to the next level. Not to mention: I'm a terrible flirt. The most flirtatious thing that I do is to giggle, which is so stupid. I'm also really awkward when I'm with someone new; I can't just flirtatiously touch someone like it's the most natural thing without feeling unnatural and awkward.

Oh well, at least he thinks I'm sexy despite my uselessness in the flirting department.

It's obviously too early to say where this is going, but I like seeing him so far, so I will continue to do so and see how it goes.

*

Anyway. Tennis this morning was good despite the shitty weather; and it was good only because my backhand continues to be good. I love playing tennis when I'm hitting my backhand well. These days, I am finding that, as long as I get into the right position to hit the backhand, I nail it 95% of the time. It's quite heartening how infrequently my backhand has gone into the net over the past few sessions. I'm so pleased that I'm going to rejoin the mini league at the club.
Charah coffee

(no subject)

I have to contain this, restrain myself a bit, hold back a little - and I will, after this slightly gushy entry.

I got tired of waiting for Thomas to ask me out again (no, I couldn't even last a day without losing patience). So after he sent me Part II of the Yalan Story (which is super cute), and he told me what he's found endearing about me so far, I said, 'So when am I seeing you again?'

He replied, 'When are you free?'

'Ummm Tuesday,' I said.

'Then Tuesday...7:00pm. I shall pick you up from yours.'

Have I ever mentioned, or pontificated on, how much of a turn-on it is when a man is decisive and takes control? Also: his coming to mine to pick me up sounds so adult and grown-up, like what actual people my age do when they're not trying to escape the realities of life by hiding in some crappy ivory tower in Cambridge.

Having said all that, and despite my liking a man who takes charge, I have decided that I do need to be in control of this situation after all. I am at the stage where I like him enough to not see or even talk to others, but not at the stage where I would be devastated if he texted me tomorrow to tell me that he didn't want to see me anymore. I am at a general stage in life where I don't want to waste time with someone who doesn't share my values and who isn't on the same page as me when it comes to dating. So I'm going to tell him that I'm not seeing anyone else, ask him if he is, and if he says no, I will tell him that I have HSV1; if he says yes, he's seeing other people, I will tell him goodbye. That's not because I irrationally and unreasonably expect commitment after 3 dates, but because it would tell me that he doesn't share my values, that we're not on the same page, and therefore any further engagement will be a waste of time, and any further foolish smiling to self when reading his messages will take me closer only to heartache.

Nope, ain't got time for that shit. In any event, a man who still wants to see other people when he has me is simply stupid and not worthy of my time. At least Matt, for all his faults (his laundry list of faults), deeply appreciated that one simple truth.

*

On another note, I think I have managed to pinpoint the root cause of my failed relationships, the fact that I am not just unmarried, but single, when I'm nearly 32, and despite the fact that there had been two men with whom I could see a real future.

I do not, or cannot, compromise. I do not, or cannot, compromise on fundamental values, where I want to live, what I want to do, the dreams that I chase blindly without thinking about what they are really worth to me. It is my way or the highway. I questioned Wei Chuen because religion, even if it wasn't an issue for him. I questioned Wouter because location, distance, his supposed shortcomings (which I am not sure even matter anymore); because he was Mr Perfect for six months and then he became astoundingly real and I didn't want to compromise.

If I were ten years younger, I would blame my parents for spoiling me to the point that I expect to get everything that I want; that I expect things to always go my way. But Julian Barnes wrote once that, when we reach a certain age, we are too old to blame our parents for our own flaws. I can't remember which age he'd stated, but I certainly think that I am definitely too old to place any blame on my parents. So the fault is all mine.

I suppose being aware of one's faults is the first step to cure. Or perhaps now I will be more alert to things that are likely to conflict with my values/desires in the future, so that I don't waste time on them now.

I have said this many times before but it bears repeating: it would be so nice to be simple.