“Why are you still single?” or any variation of this question is something I’ve been used to hearing for some time now. As an unattached woman in her mid-thirties who has never been married, and has no (non-furry) kids, it seems I’m some sort of an enigma. I’m not quite sure how to answer the question. I’m sure the answer is somewhere between “I’ve been focusing on myself” to “I just haven’t found the right guy!”.
And it’s not because I haven’t tried. I will happily trade in my single life for companionship with the right nice guy who makes me proud to be his gal.
I remember dating someone years back who had completely swept me off my feet. He would wake up before my alarm to scrape the ice off my windshield and make me pancakes for breakfast. He told me daily how special I was. Then, I did the unthinkable.
I called him “nice”.
It was as though I had given him the kiss of death. Dropkicking a puppy in his presence would have probably gone over more smoothly.
I remembered this encounter and have since posed the question to a number of my male friends, who all agreed with the negative reaction associated with being called “nice”. It’s just not what a man wants to be viewed as. It’s not what’s revered or rewarded.
WHY!? Can’t one be kind and simultaneously confident, and admirable? My answer to this will always be YES, though I fear I am in the minority.
Over the years, I have had my share of dates with bad, not-so-nice men. Let me save you the time and trouble – it ain’t worth it. Give me a thoughtful, kind-hearted, compassionate male over a narcissistic, macho and insensitive one. ANY. DAY. Here’s are some concrete examples that will show you why*.
*Full Disclosure : my experiences shared here are largely comical and do not compare to the horrific stories that many of us have encountered. I do still believe that they make a point. Also, they all include some sort of early karmic retribution which is mildly satisfying.
My time is my most valuable resource. Generally, I get a vibe off of someone in the first few minutes of meeting them – a feeling about whether or not there is enough there to pursue something further. This is why online dating can be so tricky. Often, you can make a connection online only to find out when meeting in person that there is not much there to sustain anything more than a quick chat.
I had such a feeling when I met up with Internet Date #14258 for what was to be a quick pint at a pub. As it turned out, #14258 was famished. Groan. He proceeds to order a veggie wrap with fries.
“Would you like gravy with those fries?” asks our polite server.
It was as though the waitress had asked him if he wanted orphan baby tears in his drink.
“GRAAAVY!?!?!? WHY WOULD I WANT GRAVY? I just ordered a VEGGIE wrap!”
Dude. Give it a rest. Lots of people order veggie meals sans being vegetarian. It might have even been veggie gravy. In this case, he was a real-life vegetarian – which, sidenote, he should have noted in his profile. I am fairly certain that my life partner will share my enjoyment of juicy burgers and steaks.
Being rude to a server is a big red flag in my books, especially on a first date. Fate must have agreed with me, as #14258 promptly stabbed himself in the chin with the toothpick that holds his veggie wrap together. He bled profusely. So much so that the napkins at the table weren’t enough to stop the bleeding. He ran off to the bathroom long enough for me to contemplate leaving about a dozen times.
I spent the first date with a guy who apparently had all lots of cash. Rich, rich, rich, Money, money, money. I don’t remember much of anything else we conversed about, as it mostly centered around how much money he had. It was probably something like this.
Me : “So what is it that you like to do around Calgary?”
Him : “Swim in my money, à-la-Scrooge McDuck.”
By all means, I find success highly impressive. Not so great when dollar bills are at the forefront of all conversation. Humility is even more admirable, in my books.
He proceeded to back his luxury car into a telephone pole while driving me home, but at least I knew he could afford the repairs.
When I lived in Abu Dhabi, I was eager to meet people who could show me around, perhaps introduce me to new locales yet unexplored in this country comprised in large part of expats. Enter Flashy American Dude. He was, from the get-go, a bit much. However, he was kind to my friends and pursued me in a way that was flattering, and not off-putting. I figured I would give him a chance when he offered to pick me up in Abu Dhabi for a pool date in Dubai.
On date day, he calls me with urgency from the sandpit he has managed to get his car stuck in. “Bring shovels and some carpet!!” he barked at me from his phone, eager for me to help him out of this mess. He then blamed my neighborhood for being too sandy. A sandy neighborhood in the desert. Weird, right?
Fast forward to pool time in Dubai, where he proceeds to whine as we are seated in an area that is not to his liking. He then orders 3 tequila shots for himself and telepathically decides that I would like a fruity daiquiri. He chastises the waitress for putting his multiple / my singular drinks down on our table in an “improper” way.
I had already decided this would be the first and last date with Mr. No Manners and started thinking of my exit plan.
I inquire about my ride back home, as he has just downed his third tequila shot, and is in no shape to drive. His response :
“I will drive you. I don’t ever get drunk. Must be a genetic thing.”
At my insistence that I will not be driven home by someone who is one tequila shy from “One Tequila, Two Tequila, Three Tequila, FLOOR”, he complains that I am uptight. I pick up my things to leave as he starts complaining loudly at the sight of a mildly chubby woman lounging by the pool, stating that he should not have to “endure” this in his peripheral view as a paying customer.
At my leaving to grab a taxi, he insists that I should give him a second chance, that we have started things off on the wrong foot. At my refusal to do so, he gives me the most blistering line in his arsenal :
“You have a booger in your nose”.
And so, Mr. Nice Guy (who is probably bearded, likes animals, live music and talking politics), I will gladly give you a chance. I think you are worthy of my pedestal, and the right person to make me stop answering that annoying single question, once and for all. You will not make up stories about boogers in my nose because you are better than that. I can’t wait to meet you.
Teacher and world traveler who lives in Calgary. Loves working out in the city, hiking in the mountains, scoping out new places to have food and drink in the city. Listener of live music, lover of coffee and meaningful conversation.