This isn't a "date" story so much as an "um, wow" recollection. The kind of "um, wow" that halts further contact. Not that he was a bad guy, just that we were uh, not on the same page.
So, this was the initial interaction:
Him: want to get a drink?So we leave the conference together to head to the metro and end up talking about work stuff. We paused at a monument on the way and, since he's from out of town, I offer to take a picture of him sightseeing using my phone. A stranger walked and said "Oh! How about I take the photo of BOTH of you!"
Me: no thanks, I'm on the heels of a breakup and just not up for it, but thanks.
He hadn't turned weird yet so I said sure.
Then I emailed the photo to him.
Which meant he now had my email address.
I get home to the following email (condensed from about 3 pages):
"Hey, it was so nice hanging out with you. Sorry you're going through a breakup. You're an amazing woman. [Insert 17 lines of praise for all of my amazing qualities of which he has observed and fully stands as the authority on my awesomeness.] You know, If you change your mind and want to hang, I'm at xxx hotel, at xxx street address, in room xx, and -- don't worry -- I won't expect anything from you if you stop by. If you want anything, even to be held by a friend, I'm here. You can come anytime. You don't even have to call first."Um, how did we go from "that's a nice design" to "come to my hotel?"
I sit on this for a week, not sure how to respond. I finally decide to write something short and sweet:
Me: "Thanks for thinking of me, that's thoughtful. I'm good."He writes back [condensed from 2 pages]:
"I'm so glad to hear from you. I don't normally DO this but I just wanted to tell you that I was really hoping you'd come over. If you had, I would have been as naughty or nice as you wanted, even if you just wanted to sleep that would have been fine. I just wanted you near because you're so [insert myriad flatteries]. Miss you. Oh and my tomato plant didn't kick it, yay!"I wait another week.
He misses me?
We talked about tomato plants?
I respond to this after a few days:
Me: "Thanks again for your nice email. I have zero interest in romance or dating right now. I'm not too comfortable talking about this so will just stick to work. Glad your tomato plant is better!"His response (this time I'm cutting and pasting a snippet instead of paraphrasing. Misspellings original):
Him: "Before you think too harshly of me please understand that my suggestive comments towards anything romanatic or physical between us was meant simply as outlet for you to relax, unwind, and blow off some of the built up steam caused by all the recent events in your life. This no-strings-or-relationships-attached offer was very much a heartfelt and honest attempt at making you feel better. [snip] It was my belief that if I pleasantly, tactfully, and gentlemanly as possible, presented you with the possbility of a one night escape from relatity that I could somehow lesson the weight on your shouders. I was willing to be any kind of a friend that you needed that night whether it was a just a shoulder to cry on, a quiet place to rest, or a night of blissful ecstasy throwing all the worries of the world to the wind then forgotting the whole thing ever happened the next morning. I hope you understand that this... was about being the kind of friend who would willingly jump on a grenade if that was what was required in order to a friend."Our exchange ended there. There just wasn't too much else to say.
Since I'm not too experienced in the pickup line world or even with dating a million people, I'm not totally sure if this is something he uses on everyone (if so, does it ever actually WORK???) or if he just acted weird around me. What do you think? Why would someone just spurt this out despite the absence of encouraging feedback? I'm sure he's a nice enough guy. We've all made social gaffes and maybe this was just one of those things. But really, guy. Really?