Monday, June 30, 2008

Date #114: Robot-Man

As I was walking down the block to the bar to meet Robot-Man, I saw a guy from behind, going the same direction, walking slowly, looking at his phone. I had a feeling that might be him, and prayed that it wasn’t – this guy was a bit portly, wearing sports sandals and too-casual-for-a-first date shlubby pants and t-shirt.

I went to the bar and waited – five minutes later, in walks my date for the evening – and of COURSE he was the shlubby guy I passed on the street.

When I talked to Robot on the phone, I noticed that after I spoke, there was a longer-than-normal pause before he replied. In person, he just seemed a little psychologically… off. When talking to me, he was like a robot – wide-eyed, barely blinked, was largely expressionless. He was certainly nice enough, but would go on and on about random facts in excruciating detail.

After a respectable amount of time (an hour that felt like ten) I did the old “boy, am I really tired” routine, said I needed to get going. Most people get what that means. Not poor Robot-Man. He insisted on walking me most of the way home, even as I’d occasionally motion, “isn’t this your subway…?”. When he told me that this was the most enjoyable night he’d had in a long time – well, I just felt for him.

Finally, a few blocks from my apartment, I said, “Ok, this is my stop!”. He asked if I’d like to go for a drink again soon – how can you say to someone’s face that you’re kind of creeped out by them? You just can’t. If he e-mails, I’ll have to send the standard “I didn’t feel the kind of chemistry I’m looking for” line.

In other news: had a second date with Smarty Pants this weekend. Still finding him fun and interesting. We were both pretty tired, so we didn’t stay out as late as we might have otherwise. At least I think he was just tired…! Hopefully not the kind of tired I was with Robot-Man.

Exchanged a few text messages with the Visitor – it looks like we may be able to get together again before he leaves town in a few days. I’m excited – even though we only kissed, the chemistry in those kisses? Wow. Definitely looking forward to more of that.

UPDATE: he texted about 3 hours before we were due to get together, saying he was afraid he was going to have to cancel, for work-related reasons – but he hoped we could get together next time he was in town. Um, last-minute canceling, dude? So not cool.

No big deal. There’s other J-guys I need to write back to – replenish the list!


*Juliette* said...

That's the hardest thing about this kind of dating so far; saying "no thanks, I'm just not that into you" to their face. I wish there were an easier way to do that...

Dating Trooper said...

That's why I know I like you (even though we've never met), you felt for RobotMan instead of mercilessly mocking him as many dating bloggers do. Poor guy. Don't you sometimes wish you could step outside reality and just give him a social lesson? Alas, I've kind of tried that before (not with dates but socially clueless guy friends), and it just doesn't work. Oh well. At least you were nice!

Anonymous said...

"a respectable amount of time."

i grapple with this. is it better to stay an hour or so to "be polite," or is it better to take your leave as soon as humanly possible, like as soon as your drink is finished, to "be polite." which is polite and respectable? i don't know!

then again, what if you have a great time and talk for hours, and the guy never calls again. isn't that impolite of him?? i have no idea what polite even means nowadays! is "trying to be nice" ever helpful when you're not feelin' it? when he's not feelin' it? is "trying to be nice" too often misconstrued so it's better not to be nice?

well, it is empathetic of you to feel compassionate toward roboticman. surely, any previous women he dated were not, if you were the most enjoyable!


Anonymous said...

poor Shlubby Guy! at least he was good material. hope i'm not one of those merciless mockers DT is referring to....

julia said...

I so agree with Dating Trooper, I felt for schlubby guy reading your post. I think there is a whole subset of people out there who need to find each other... they are just "off" for a variety of reasons and need help.

ab said...

Robot-Man probably has Aspergers syndrome, which is a mild form of autism that effect social skills (they just don't get social mores)

I know this because my 10 year old has been diagnosed on the mild end of the scale, and can go on and on in excruciating detail about what interests HIM.

Not their fault, but, yes, they will not pick up on "clues"

*Juliette* said...

I agree with Stephanie...definitely sounds like Aspergers. Maybe you should rename him "Rain Man", that is, if you see him again. I'm struggling with the "how long is it appropriate to stay just to be polite" thing as well. I've been on both ends of that scenario this week, where I could tell he was ready to go before I was, and the converse too. I'm always hesitant to hurt someone's feelings. Is that a female thing? I did have a man tell me that he always waits and says the "no thanks" part in an email, so I guess that it's hard for some of them as well.