Thursday, July 31, 2008

Fly on the Wall

I was waiting for my ride after work today. As I sat on a cement curb, three twenty-something guys gathered opposite the light pole to my right.

As I marveled over my new, cute wallet, I overheard one of the guys seeking advice from his buddies.

"...we've run into each other twice. It's got to be meant to be. She's hot, I mean, I'm nothing much to look at, but she's great. What should I do?"

"Is she single?"

"I don't know."

"What do you mean, did you get a look at her hand?"


"That's always the first thing I check."

Being out of the dating scene, I found this whole situation rather entertaining. Women naturally, and constantly, talk about dating and relationships. It was fascinating to hear about the chase from the perspective of the opposite sex. It was rather bizarro to find three guys asking for advice from each other.

There have been many times I've talked about rings with girlfriends. We know when it's a good idea to fake a wedding ring to wart off unwanted attention. We freak when a guy gets friendly even though they clearly should notice an engagement or wedding ring on the hand. We've experienced times when the lack of a wedding ring has given a guy false hope of meeting a cute, single girl.

I couldn't help want to sneak a peek of these three curiosities as the friend continued to ask questions about the hot girl. The one talking the most had a clumsy voice. I wondered if his voice reflected his appearance in some way. His friend had a sharper, more social demeanor. Up to this point, I hadn't heard the third guy speak.

It was like peering through a camera viewfinder. The lightpole limited my angle on the trio. In my quick glance, I saw two indiscernible side profiles and one young, white guy. He was average, slightly geekish, with a curly, brown beard. I wondered if these guys were university students or leaving their start-up jobs for the day.

The guys continued to chat as we all waited on the platform. Mr. Clumsy kept asking whether he should take action. The next time they run into each other, what would be the best move? I'm guessing that he also knows her from elsewhere because his familiarity and interest went beyond two encounters.

Gradually, the conversation moved towards bearded guy's drama. He shared that he's been chatting with this "really, sweet girl." He talked about how friendly and thoughtful she is, not gorgeous, but genuinely sweet person.

The most recent e-mail was a source of concern for him. I missed exactly what the issue was, but he fretted about next steps.

He was considering calling her and asked his buddies, "when should I call her?"

"Take it easy, don't rush it."

"Yeah, I know. But what do you think about 9 o'clock. That seems like a good time."

"Yeah, that sounds okay. But ... just apologize and move on."

"I agree, acknowledge it but don't discuss anyone more. She's gonna think... ."

"You sure? I mean ... "

"Just take it easy and be cool, you don't want to blow it."

I swear I never imagined hearing guy talk like this. There were times I wanted to offer some kind of female insight, but my guess is probably no better than theirs. It was strange to find guys that would so openly talk about their dating quandries, as if they were subtly asking for help. It's normal that both sexes worry, and worry, and worry about making the right impression. I just never imagined that I'd hear three guys giving each other advice and talk about their feelings. I suppose it's nice to know men and women have more similarities than we realize.

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