Dates with the Philanderer
July 31, 2012 § 63 Comments
From yesterday’s Times (with apologies about lack of posts of late, but am on holiday; more to come anon):-
Several dates, and the Philanderer behaved impeccably. But when it is someone who doesn’t make a person’s insides do a movement like a synchronised swimmer, he or she (and in this case, I) can be a fickle thing indeed. There were moments when I thought yes and moments when I thought no.
At the end of the evening of our opening date, he made no move but suggested we should meet again soon. I went away thinking I was pleased he had not put me in the position of having to decide whether or not to sleep with him on the first date, but also quite pleased that he had liked me enough not simply to say, “See you around sometime,” which can precisely be translated as, “Won’t see you any time soon, I hope.” Late at night, as another date was coming to an end, we stood on the pavement outside his flat for really a rather long time, chatting and both putting off the moment which sat plumply between us like a socking great elephant, when there would have to be some sort of An Outcome. During those twenty minutes, I was of the opinion that it would be agreeable if the Outcome was more significant than less so, but in the end said Outcome constituted merely a mutual squeeze of the hand, a kiss on both cheeks and no references to future meetings. If he had asked me right then, I would have gone inside with him. But he didn’t. And now I think the moment might have passed, on both our parts.
As I walked away into the night, I wondered what he was about. The reputation would seem to belie the old-fashioned pace of the courtship, if this is what this is? Maybe I under-estimate him, and he is in fact gallant and courteous and a fellow who sees me as more than just another anonymous brick in his extensive wall and so wishing to take things slowly. The trouble is, in this modern, fast-forward world, a plankton doesn’t see it like that. I’m guessing he once was keen but is as fickle as me and hot and cold. But probably more cold, having concluded that I am too old or unappealing, or fat or thick, and that, after the investment of a few gettings-together and a hundred quid or so, he has found that plankton, and more specifically I, just don’t do it for him.
Now I am going away. He knows when I am back, so we shall see. No idea whether or not I shall ever see him again. Which is fine; just slightly odd. Middle-aged dating is just so peculiar; just so extraordinarily nebulous.