DATING IS JUST LIKE TAKING THE S.A.T.’S. Everyone asks how you did, and you’re either too humiliated to say or you want to scream it from the rooftops. The S.A.T.’s don’t really measure much of what you’ve learned or accurately reflect your intellect. They expose how well you can take a test. You drive to Princeton Review and listen to a coach.
I reviewed my recent string of “as-of-lates” with my “life coach,” Mrs. Phone Therapist, listening to her rules, but “play it cool” was right up there with “eliminate as many wrong answers as possible.” I wasn’t good at either. I craved the wrong ones, and I was anything but cool about it.
Gerassimos was a chiseled Adonis with a strong jaw and cleft chin. We on-again-off-again’d for a while because he wasn’t the kind of guy I should be dating, yet our attraction to each other was so intense, I couldn’t help myself. When speaking with the girls, I referred to him as “The Bad Greek Boy,” to distinguish him from Andreas, “The Good Greek Boy,” who’d send me panting emails about his Utopian hopes for us while attaching David Grey MP3s.
When I say Gerassimos wasn’t the kind of guy I should be dating, I mean he was detached. Busy with plans. Not at all in hot pursuit. He usually only hankered to see me on Sunday nights when he was depressed and needed to “be around your lively self.” During the week, he was often aloof and preoccupied, most likely with other women. He was a Greek Don Juan, and my heart should have known better than to go there, especially after what I’d learned about myself when dealing with the Eurosexual.
Because he didn’t exactly do sensitive, Gerassimos surprised me when he suggested “How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days” for our Sunday evening “let’s pretend it’s a date even though it’s just physical” entertainment. Upon further probing I learned he was in celebralove with Kate Hudson.
“Riiiiight,” I told Phone Therapist, “like I really need to see a movie on how to do that!” Then she why’d me to death, followed by a reminder that a savvy woman knows not to smother a man, knows how to play it coy. Part of the problem was, feigning dismissive about a guy I really liked made me feel like a caged mandrill, gripping the bars and shuffling from side to side fervently. The other part of the problem was the boy I liked was very much funnel cake and not at all celery….
…Gerassimos was my funnel cake, but we didn’t hide behind closed doors. We did it in public. I thought if we spent enough time together, he’d come around and flash me a bit of his underbelly. He’d stop with the others and just want me because I was the one worth changing for. It’s as if I wanted to convince him of something. Why are women even tempted by insensitive men? We all know you can’t change people, yet we stay thinking he’ll “grow up,” and suddenly become caring. We’ll be the one. Suddenly he’ll be sensitive. And then we’ll be left to determine if we even want him, for him, not for the way he made us feel. It’s a challenge.