Affect(at)ion

All of my chill is gone and we’re officially in trouble.

I THOUGHT I was in trouble but now I’m REALLY in trouble.

I almost kissed the Viking.

Unconsciously.

Without thinking about it.

I freaked out when I realized I trusted him without thinking about it.

Now I am absolutely climbing the walls from how uncomfortable I am with myself and my feelings and instincts and the whole weird situation.

It happened on Saturday.

He showed up at an event he’d previously said he wasn’t going to. It was Fusion, and so far as everyone knew, he didn’t really do the whole Fusion thing. Then as I’m working the door he came up the stairs. I put a wristband on him and when I managed to get the sticky bit stuck perfectly straight on the band (which is a FEAT let me tell you), grinned “Perfect!”

He sort of murmured “Wouldn’t expect anything less” with this tiny smile on his lips and glowing in those baby blues. He walked away and I hid under the desk (literally) while Kay fetched my (vodka-laced) Powerade from my bag so I could knock enough back to hopefully stop my hands from shaking with anxiety.

I am such a classy broad.

So I work at the front desk for my hour shift and then Kay and I go looking for him. But subtly because we’re adults (I think). We find him in the Blues room and he’s dancing with someone. I go back to the Fusion room because I actually very much enjoy Fusion. I dance and can’t manage to get away for a while but I see the Viking poke his head in now and again, always retreating to the Blues room.

Evan comes in eventually and snags me for a dance but drags me into the Blues room to do it where the Viking is dancing with someone else. Evan and I dance and he nods in the Viking’s direction before saying in a tone usually reserved for oh la la “You should ask him to dance, I think he’s been following you.” He then wiggles his eyebrows at me.

Now I told Evan a secret on Thursday. Long story short he knows about my crush.

[Long story, medium Evan was playing “pick a boyfriend for Kay from the dance floor” on Thursday. She rejected all of his picks and then later, dancing with me he asked if she’d be into the Viking at which point I jumped at the chance to confirm whether a rumor from the previous Thursday that the Viking has a long-distance relationship with some swing dancer from Canada was true or not. Evan seems to think they broke up but either way “they’re not married.” He pressed on with setting up the pair and I was then stuck making lame excuses as to why Kay wouldn’t be into Mr. Viking until I finally just told him she wouldn’t touch him because she knew I liked him. Evan then pronounced himself Switzerland in the whole thing and nothing more was said.]

So then the whole night was spent thinking maybe Evan had mentioned something to the Viking (they ARE friends) and that THAT was the reason for the unexpected appearance. But after dancing with him that once I never got the change to actually ask him what he’d done.

I slipped into the Fusion room to calm down leaning against wall of the dance studio like a coward and not ten seconds later the Viking appeared in the doorway and casually leaned against the pile of dance barres next to me. We chatted, he said he’d seen me flitting in and out of the Blues room but never really staying. I said something about looking for songs I like and then mentioned I did go in a few times hoping to snag him for a dance.

I asked him to dance, we danced. He thanked me and disappeared for another hour until he pulled something similar and I found him back against the dance barres watching the Fusion dancers.

The wall was more crowded than it had been when he’d joined ME there so there wasn’t a ton of room. I grinned cheekily at him and told him to “budge up” so I could fit between him and the stack of barres. There was just enough room for me, he didn’t need to move, but it would be close quarters. He grinned at me and said “no.”

I wedged in next to him. resting my elbows on the higher barre build into the wall where his were. The line of our sides touched. Just enough to feel the warmth, but not the weight behind him. We talked. I cannot recall what about.

He had to lean down a bit to talk to me because he’s tall and it was loud. It meant his face hovered over mine. I was practically tucked under his arm. He could have shifted away a bit but he didn’t.

At some point in the conversation I found myself turning from the dance floor, smiling, and looking up at him and he was smiling and looking down at me and I just felt this tug I haven’t felt in a long time. Like a knee jerk reaction I wanted to lean up those last couple inches and press a quick kiss to his face.

I didn’t want to make out with him. I didn’t even necessarily want to kiss his mouth. But in that moment I instinctively, unconsciously, FELT that I should kiss him.

My mind or body or some combination of the two feels affectionate towards this man I’m just barely getting to know. Just like my mind/body/hybrid knows he won’t drop me when he sweeps me into a fast dip.

It makes sense. I was naturally at one point a very affectionate person. Leaning over to kiss someone, or slipping my hand into someone else’s was easy as breathing.  Hugs. Shoulder bumps. Brushing an arm.

Then I dated someone abusive who didn’t allow me to touch him without permission and certainly never in public and a couple emotionally distant people who wouldn’t hold my hand or otherwise touch me around other people. I now have a learned habit of deliberately, physically distancing myself from people.

It helped me recognize the sensation and squash it before I did something awkward like lean in.

But a small (very small, miniscule, really) part of me wonders if it would that have been the worse thing I’ve ever done. It may have solved all our problems.

I know he felt some sort of pause and the pink that found its way into his cheeks when we broke the silence and looked back at the dance floor before I asked if he wanted to dance some blues with me says its something along the lines of my complimenting him, saying he’s handsome or talented or witty.

So I almost kissed him.

My unconscious tried to kiss him.

Which means the crush and our growing friendship has turned to some rosy shade of affection, for me at least.

I am horrified and more anxious than ever before. But it’s also exciting, and I still don’t understand anything on his side.

 

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Zero to Awkward REAL Quick

There’s a guy I see at all the different Blues (and now Fusion) events and he’s super nice, a little quiet, and one of my favorite leads. He’s actually the first person who ever asked me to dance the first night I tried Blues.

He always asks me to dance at least once, and usually towards the end of the night when people thin out and the music gets slow, we wind up dancing 2 or 3 songs in a row to a nice Slow Drag (I would link to the wikipedia page, but their definition just makes Slow Drag sound kind of sleazy, so if you’re really interested, maybe try youtube?).

Either way, he’s just nice and not intimidating at all and it’s very comforting to dance with him at the end of the night.

I went to a Fusion event a couple weekends ago and he was there it was VERY lead heavy so I didn’t sit practically the whole night and towards the end of the night he snagged me and we wound up dancing a slow song together. He pulled me into a closed embrace and leaned our heads together, tucked my hand into his and let them fall to our sides. We kind of just swayed there talking. It was relaxing and a nice break from the high energy of the night.

The song ended and since we were still talking I asked if he wanted to go another round. He did and we picked up where we left off.

I mentioned he did a lot of different dance events.

Then he mentioned he didn’t really come for the dancing. He spun me and then back with his head next to mine said he came to “see what his options are.”

INSERT THE SOUNDS OF SCREECHING TIRES HERE.

Now, in my mind, I’m like “IS THAT WHAT THIS IS??? AM I AN OPTION???? ABORTABORTABORT!!!” The cozy snuggle took on a new meaning.

Outwardly, we continue our endless bluesy circles on the floor and I pipe up:

“I come to events because I’m using it as therapy for my crippling Agoraphobia!”

There was a long pause before he asked if that was like Claustrophobia.

At which point I began with “That IS a common misconception but-” and followed with the DSM definition in a rambling deluge.

Needless to say, that was the last time we danced that night and he got REALLY quiet after that.

The good news is, I now have a tried and true method for shutting down a potentially awkward romantic approach.

 

I may think you’re hot. 

I may be ABSOLUTELY BATSH!T!!!

 

Can’t go wrong.

Have you ever…

Have  you ever dreamed you were performing a strip tease to weird warped versions of stuff you listen to in real life for someone with no face, just a body and eyes? But not in a horror kind of way, just in a not-recognizable as one person or another kind of way?

But you still have a sneaking suspicion who they are?

And you wake up and are like “damn, I’m hot” abut then realize you’re wearing a 3XL batman tee shirt you stole from your brother and your morning breath may be the reason the cat is under the bed instead of in it?

And then you wonder what you must have looked like dreaming that dream.

And then that sneaking suspicion from your dream comes back and you think you know those eyes and you’re all I’M DREAMING OF HIM??? WHYYYYYYYY???? 

And you replay the whole thing anyway because you WERE actually kind of hot?

No?

 

Cool, great, me neither.

Girls are Creepy

Last night my roommates were comparing notes on guys they’d met Blues dancing with me and things… well… We’ll say things got a wee bit out of hand.

Now, I will freely admit, I am the resident internet stalker. I have found every form of social media on a man just knowing what he looked like, and where he was one night. No name. Just a face and a temporary location.

When I was on Exec board for my sorority in college and girls were potentially cyber bullying someone for calling them on breaking House Rules, I was the one called in to hunt down ambiguously-named Twitter accounts and screen cap evidence for Judicial Board hearings. I had a list of a dozen girls found in under 2o minutes. Personal best.

That being said, I thought this was a specialized skill and that I’d been getting better at it over the years.

Now I’m thinking I haven’t been so much honing my skills over the years, as the internet is just making it increasingly, horrifyingly, easy to find all sorts of information about people you barely know. Cue my hiding in the bathtub and never emerging.

Last night, my roommate found the LinkedIn, Facebook, and even Myspace of the guy she was internet stalking. Now, that’s pretty standard stuff, I’m sure. It’s social media, after all, LinkedIn is for workplace networking and head hunting. Easy to find. Easy to access.

She also found street photos of his home address, a school-based interview with him from when he was five, an obituary for his grandfather, and his dad’s cell phone number.

WHAT?

She wasn’t the only one stalking people last night.

I found some old high school info on a guy. Where he works. Various places he frequents. From the info I found on some old local articles I was able to calculate his age.

We were giddy with power, fingers flying over the keys, shouting out each new sliver of truth we discerned on these poor helpless fellows who have no way of knowing the bubbling kettle of madness they’ve landed themselves in.

At one point, giggling, Dee piped up, “But wait! Wait! You guys! When you see them again, you’re going to have to pretend you don’t know any of this!”

“Old hat.” I responded. Kay shrugged it off as well.

This is normal to us.

You see a guy. He’s cute. You talk to him, he’s nice. You go home and find every last speck of information the internet has to offer on him, make up your mind who he is, then strategically draw the information you already have out of him the next time you see him. It looks like a great conversation from his end, and is really an enormous track-covering sham.

THAT’S how we start relationships.

I justify this by saying I’d like to know if a potential flame was a child-murderer BEFORE I waste my time enticing him over.  But if we’re being honest, I’ve stalked the absolute pants off of every last one of my exes and nowhere did it say they were psycho-abusers, stalkers, drunks, or goldfish perverts (don’t ask). So clearly this method is flawed.

WHY do I do it then?

WHY does every girl I know do it?

What is so wrong with just finding my chill, waiting until I see him (I CANNOT keep calling him ‘Senpai’) on Saturday and talking to him. I could even add him on Facebook. We have a mutual friend and he’s listed as “Going” in the event page for the dance we met at. Normal info, a normal person would have access to and be able to act upon.

This is exactly what is wrong with dating.

For all the vast stretches of information available to us through technology these days, it seems only to make it harder to be up front and real with each other.

We would rather infinite scroll through someone’s Instagram and read an article on their Elementary school than spend time WITH the other person deciding whether we like them.

Its horrible.

But much as I want to stop, I’m not sure I can.

A big part of this (for me at least) is fear.

I’ve fallen into “checking up” on guys I date through social media.

Nothing good has ever come from it. I found I was being cheated on this way. Twice. I found a guy I was dating still lived with his ex girlfriend and that they did everything together when he wasn’t with me. Nothing. Good.

So now I START each potential relationship off finding every way I can stalk him if we DO have a relationship. I start things off suspicious. Where is the room for trust to grow? I am ruining my own chances.

I’m also protecting myself.

This is the problem. It’s not clean cut and I don’t know the answer.

This, like every other part of my love life is messy and tangled and I probably have no business alining anyone else with my bullsh*t.

But if someone wants to put up with it, I won’t say no.

Because while I am super messed up in a LOT of ways, I know I’m also kind of special as well. I know I’m a great cook, a passionate lover, and kind of funny in a warped way. I have excellent taste in music, a good singing voice, and I’m not exactly bad looking.

I think that’s how it goes for most girls.

We’re creepy.

But probably if you were as interested in us as we were in you, you’d figure out we’re kind of special and we more than make up for it in other ways.

We’re freaking unicorns is what I’m saying.

Unicorns with wifi.

That Other Story

You know, the one from last time I said was a long story? About how I accidentally told my current flame I love them?

It’s really not that long; just embarrassing, really.

This guy and I were dating casually for a year or so. He cancelled our plans on my birthday, I got mad, he realized I was way too serious, he called things off.

He came back some months later. Started talking again. Apologized. He’s back in my life.

Kind of.

During a text message conversation (which I could probably pull up, screen cap, and post here except I really just can’t be bothered right now) he said “you love me.”

I’m an idiot.

Flash back to when he dumped me in Jan 2015. I wrote him a letter. Which I then sent to his apartment, assuming he probably wouldn’t get it because I HAD TO TEACH HIM HOW THE GODDAMN POST WORKS (he’s foreign, it’s not his fault, it was cute, moving on). In that letter was the following bit:

I sincerely doubt I’ll get to tell you in person now, I just wanted to write to say I love you. You ARE an adventure. You DID change my life. And I hate that I misread things and spoiled something that used to be so easy.
I’m not going to ask you to come back to me a third time, but know that if you decide to, my door is open. At least to talk. 

I would like to take this moment to reiterate that I am an idiot.

Now flash forward to me telling you he never got the stupid letter.

But when he said “you love me” I assumed he knew and read the letter, so I responded with “yes, but I don’t see how that matters” to try and play it cool, to which he responded “yes it does” but didn’t really catch what I meant. I didn’t catch that he wasn’t aware of the subtext and we went about our business until the next time he innocuously and colloquially said “you love me.”

Witness the horror that ensued.

Him: you love me

Me: Yes, and?

Him: Just saying

Me: Shouldn’t have told you. It’s clearly gone straight to your head.

Him: No. I know its the hair

Me: See. That is exactly what I mean.

Him: No I mean I know its not me its the hair.

Me(not having caught on yet): No I mean that’s exactly what I mean by it doesn’t matter. You don’t take it seriously.

Him: You don’t actually love me (mouse emoji)

Me (still not getting it): don’t be shitty.

Him: I’m not.  There was a question in there, I didn’t know.

The most obtuse freaking idiot ever (Me): You didn’t know what?

Him: That you thought of me that way.

 

BOOM.

 

And that children, is why you should always have face to face conversations where you can read the context of the situation.

Also: never write sappy love letters they have never done anything but leave material evidence.

I’m sure someone, somewhere out in West Hollywood, whips my letter out at parties for a good laugh whenever they so please.

Good lord.