Thursday, April 30, 2009

The Hottie and The Nottie

I was sitting at an outdoor bar, flipping through the latest issue of Architectural Digest and sipping on Red Bull and vodka on a fine Wednesday afternoon. The crowds around me were rowdy and copious, as everyone and their mother were out doing various pre-Derby activities, which mainly, as I found out, consist of drinking and attending free outdoor country concerts. Hoping to see Michael Jordan or James Gandolfini, who are rumored to attend the Derby annually, I lift my head up from time to time and survey the crowds. I spot a fat woman wearing an oversized vest, dragging her screaming kids through the sea of people. I spot a man with many wrinkles under his eyes talking in an exasperated tone on his iPhone. I spot a crowd of college kids with beer bottles in their hands and band names on their T-shirts.

I spot a gorgeous man in a business suit sitting across the bar from me... Holy crap, how did I not notice him before? I carefully take a sip of my drink and look at him again. Very sexy, indeed. He's on his Blackberry. His portfolio and drink are placed in front him in a careless manner - he's having what I am having. Red Bull and vodka - good choice. I put aside Architectural Digest and pretend to concentrate on a game on TV at the center of the bar.

"Want another one?" the bartender asks me in passing and points to my drink.

"Sure, why not," I reply.

The hot guy is now done with his Blackberry for the moment. He looks at me for a brief second with a half smile on his face then turns his attention to the TV. He reaches for his drink and as his fingers wrap around the hefty glass, I notice no ring on his finger. Interesting.

The crowds at the bar begin to get denser. It is now just after 6pm and all the business suits are rushing in to grab a cold drink and forget about their meetings, expense reports and and power lunches. The hot guy gets up to walk to the restroom, I presume - as he walks to the covered portion of the bar, he turns his head slightly and looks at me again. I feel a hint of blush on the verge of manifesting itself on my face and i quickly take another sip of my drink. That guy is gorgeous.

Late twenties, maybe early thirties, I think. Sexy and single, or at least not married, I think. Beautifully tailored suit too, must have some money, must be successful in what he does, I think and swoon silently on my bar stool.

"Excuse me, I couldn't help but notice that magazine you were reading not too long ago."

I snap out of my day dream and look over to my side for the source of the voice. A man in his fifties with a receding hairline and a laptop in his lap addresses me with a smile.

"Oh yes, i was just trying to read up on some stuff I am researching for my thesis," I say as I pull out the magazine to show him, "It's called Architectural Digest, comes out about four times a year."

The guy flips through my magazine, as I anxiously await for him to give it back to me so I can move on with my life and turn my attention back to the hottie who is now back in his seat. No such luck as the old guy strikes up a conversation.

"I am in real estate," (aren't we all?) he says, " This stuff fascinates me."

I smile, still not convinced if I should talk to him but I throw out a few pleasantries as to not appear to be a rigid bitch. Of course, he takes my comments to be an invitation to a conversation and slides his stool closer to mine. I look over at the hot guy with a mild look of fear and annoyance in my eyes. He picks up on that and smiles at me.

The old guy turns out to be a decent conversationalist and, as he offers to buy me a drink, I reluctantly accept. He starts telling me about his ex-wife and the painful divorce process he had to go through. Fascinating. I keep looking over at the hottie as he slowly finishes up his drink and waves the bartender over for his credit card.

Powerless to stop the old man from talking, I watch as the hot guy signs the receipt, grabs his portfolio and Blackberry and walks out of the bar onto the crowded Louisville street. One last glance from him as he is about to disappear in the crowd, and I feel my heart sink a little. I blew it.

The old man keeps buying me drinks to get me liquored up and introduces me to the bartender and a few regulars around us. I don't mind his company, but I would rather be sitting next to my hottie right now. A few people say hi to the old guy and he introduces me to them - they eye me up and down sceptically, unaware of the fact that he just met me and, no doubt, thinking that I am THAT girl.

Unfortunately, when I get a good buzz going, I become a chatty companion and around 9pm or so the old guy and I are good friends - talking about New York, and architecture, and the Derby. I tell him that I want to go but don't have the tickets and he says that he will gladly take me and even buy me a dress and a hat. I laugh in response and tell him to take me shopping the next day. God, I am a freaking fool.

The old guy walks me home and gets my number, promising to call me the next morning. I secretly hope that he doesn't, but I also cannot be mean to him if he does. I simply don't want to go to the Derby with him but I can't flat out reject him because he seems to be kind of a big deal and this town is too small to be making enemies. My strategy is to tell him that my friends from Cincinnati are coming to visit me this weekend and to thank him for the generous offer. I really don't want any part of this fuckery and though he appears to be a nice, genuine guy, I am more than aware of his intentions towards me.

To that I say, no, thank you. Where did my hot guy go?

Sunday, April 19, 2009

The Boy and The Indecisions...

Sometimes I think I am one of the most sane, normal and level-headed people on the face of this planet. Sure, I've got my moments of insanity that I am not proud of - but when I think of them in comparison to the insane fits of other people that I know, they pale in their quantity and magnitude.

However, I've got my flaws (my many flaws) and the one that I am currently having an issue with are my anxieties. As I can think of it right now, I can subdivide these anxieties into three categories - the good, the bad and the ugly.

The Good - I like to work, keep busy. I like to continuously better myself and I get that itch whenever I feel like I am being lazy. I cannot sit still for prolonged periods of time unless I am feeling absolutely exhausted or accomplished after a long day of work. I still know how to relax and, God knows, I know how to have fun, but in my down time - from work and from play - I work on my side projects, my art, my part-time job search, my writing, my learning, my reading. I like being busy and I wouldn't change a thing and I wouldn't want to stop being anxious because that will ultimately prevent me from being at the top of my game.

The Bad - I cannot live without the internet. I need to stay connected, constantly, excessively, all the time, without a break. When I was in the process of moving from Philadelphia to Cincinnati, from Cincinnati to Louisville, there were periods of time - days, in some cases - where internet was not available to me. I found myself, at different times of the day, anxiously thinking about my email inbox, about my facebook account, about my online bank statements, about my paypal earnings. I had that unsettled feeling, the urge if you will, to drive out of my way to a library or a friend's house just for five minutes to check on my online identities - to make sure everything in the web world was up to date. Kind of like a drug, I felt my anxiety slowly seep out of my body every time I got my hands on a good old keyboard and opened that Firefox.

How do I feel about this? A little alarmed - I know that today, everyone is wired, connected, networked-out. PDAs, Blackberries, IPhones, laptops, tweeters, facebooks, myspaces, linked-ins, etc etc - we all have at least one of these things/applications/accounts and we all probably put a lot of importance and pride into staying in touch and connecting to friends and coworkers. The anxiety, though, is a sign of something deeper for me - why can't I keep cool during those down times when I am left "out of the loop" of technology?

The Ugly - This one worries me the most. Let's dissect, shall we?

I am so career-driven that, in many ways, I can be like a guy. Cold-hearted, determined, business-oriented. As far as this characteristic translates itself into my love life, I can go from dating one guy to another one without feeling much of a heartbreak. Since my last super serious relationship almost three years ago, and with the heartbreak of 2007 as I like to call it, I have taken a different stance on dating, love and trust. I date a lot, I trust a little, and I don't love. This has been my crutch and my folly at the same time, but I have not seen this as a problem until recently. By recently, I mean yesterday.

The Bar Owner and I spent an entire day together yesterday. We had a lovely lunch in the afternoon, and then we went to the waterfront to meet up with his friends to pre-game before the Thunder Over Louisville - the big fireworks extravaganza that occurs every year, a week before the Derby. We sipped on some beer and we watched the beautiful skies darken and explode with a myriad of colors and lights. It was beautiful and my boy was so lovely to me the entire night. After the fireworks, we went out dancing to a night club, and around 3am I began to notice him getting progressively tipsier and tipsier.

I had to hold his hand on the way to my apartment because he was pretty inebriated at that point. Luckily, he was not sloppily drunk, but he was drunk enough to tell me all sorts of things about me being hot, and pretty and yadda yadda. You know, the standard stuff that elevates a girl's ego and makes her melt just a little.

We laid on my couch for a while watching the AVN Awards (it's like the Grammys in porn. Romantic, right?) and he held me ever so nicely. And he said something to me, something I don't think he remembers saying but something that sounded very sincere:

"You don't even know how much I like you. You... I just like you so much."

What he said was clumsy and simple, but it sounded so... genuine. I felt it resonate in my heart. His honesty was the sexiest part of his revelation, by far.

On to the disturbing part - my anxiety issue. This morning I woke up way before him and fixed myself a quick breakfast and did a little work. All the while, my awareness of the fact that this guy was sleeping in my bedroom, under my covers, was hovering above me like a menacing cloud. I wondered to myself why I felt that way - I felt like I've spent too much time with him and it was time for him to leave. Now. It was this weird anxiety... mixed with butterflies and infatuation... but still an anxiety.

When he woke up, we watched a movie, during which I tried to casually find out just what time exactly he was planning on going home:

"I think I am going to take a nap very soon, I feel so tired. What about you? What are you up to for the rest of the day?" I asked.

"Yeah, come to think of it, I wouldn't mind taking a nap with you for an hour or two. Let's do that and then go grab dinner when we wake up," he responded.

My anxious, panicky feeling settled in completely with his response. He was planning on TAKING A NAP AND THEN GOING TO DINNER WITH ME?!?! Was he ever going to leave?!

"Come to think of it... let's skip nap. I am soooo hungry right now," I blurted out, "Do you... wanna go grab a burger, like, right now?"

The Bar Owner agreed and the rest of the day went wonderfully. You know, the dinner, the food, the conversation were great. I keep finding out that this guy and I have so much in common and, even more flattering, I see this respect in his eyes when he looks at me. I see that he admires me for who I am, how I conduct myself, my ambitions.

But I still. wanted. him. to. go. home. My anxiety kept telling me that I just needed to go home and be alone, by myself, that I needed to go and do the "me" things I like doing so much.

I know that a part of this stress and anxiety is that I really like this guy and that I haven't been in a relationship in a while. But God, is it going to prevent me from getting close to someone, or dating someone, or moving in and marrying them? If I need so much 'me' time, will I ever actually be able to handle a relationship?

The answer is unknown. But I guess the good piece of news in the midst of this whirlpool of emotions is that I, again, can't wait to see the Bar Owner again. While in Vegas this week, I will certainty be thinking of him a lot. For now, I will take him one day at a time and I will do my best to minimize my intimacy-phobia before it ruins a potentially-amazing relationship.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

No Glove No Love

Sometimes guys just don't call. For one reason or another - maybe they have a girlfriend or maybe because they weren't that into you - they don't call. As I've said before, though, nothing lost nothing gained. I don't regret giving my number to The Bouncer a couple of weeks ago and I am certainly more than ready to move on.

So what did I do the first weekend I moved to Louisville? I went out and continued my bar-related streak by meeting a guy who is a part-owner of a small neighborhood pub. This time, I let the Bar Owner make the first move and get my number. And he did just that. We went out a few times - dinner for the first date, drinks for the second, lunch for the third. Last night he came up to where I live (he lives about 20 minutes away from my place) to meet up some of his friends downtown and to hang out with me, of course.

Unfortunately, yesterday was also the day where I was unsuccessfully trying to recover from a bad hangover - an aftermath of the night before when my friend from Cincinnati came to visit, and we both had one drink way too many. I am still trying to get used to the 4am closing time of the bars here, and I guess I didn't pace myself enough and got way too drunk way too fast Firday night.

I had to regretfully inform the Bar Owner that I simply couldn't make it out last night and he asked if he could still stay over if he was in no shape to drive. "Uh oh," I thought. I wonder if he was expecting anything out of me. I told him that, sure, he can sleep on my couch if he chooses to do so, but that he had to stop by my place prior to going to the bars and get my keys, as I wasn't about to stay up and wait for him.

Today he and I hung out for the most of the afternoon, watched a couple of movies on Showtime, had lunch, and he even helped me do some grocery shopping and carry my bags home. We finished up our day with a nice make out session and he finally left to go home for an Easter dinner with his dad.

As I was fixing up the couch, folding the blanket that he used to keep himself warm the night before, a little square piece of a silver-colored wrapper fell out of the folds of the fabric. I picked it up and sure enough, it was a condom. Lifestyle Ultra Lubricated, I read. Great.

I wonder if his intentions are entirely pure now. Sure, guys will always be guys and sex is always on their minds. There is nothing wrong with sex but I am bothered that he might have showed up at my place last night expecting to get some.

I really want to take things as slow as I am comfortable with taking them. Intimacy is something that I haven't experienced for some time now and every touch is a big step towards that path, for me. I don't know if I am overreacting in any way or I should consider growing a pair of eyes in the back of my head and really watch what this guy is up to and if his intentions are as good as they seemed to be in the beginning.

Oh and I kept the condom. It's stashed in my top drawer. Just in case. For the future.