Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Downside & Upside

Two weeks ago as I was about to leave the bank I happened to run into a former co-worker and one time crush from the second place that I worked following completion of College. She seemed really happy to see me and all, which I found odd, seeing as I had not seen or heard from her in close to six years, during my time as her co-worker she would flirt with me on a daily basis whenever she came over to my work area while on her way to and from the snack bar. I did not think much of it as I knew that she already had a boyfriend, and women like that were what I termed as being ‘Off Limits’ to single guys like myself. The last thing I needed was to have some jealous boyfriend hunting me down to do some serious bodily harm. However, she was good on the eyes, the type that would make you find new ways to look at her as he passed by while not letting on that you were looking. Then I noticed some strange things that she was doing, for starters she was chasing after one of the guys that worked in my area; apparently she and her boyfriend had a on again off again type relationship.
Then there was the rumor and confirmation that she had hooked up with a friend of mine that worked in the same area with her.

Soon her flirting turned into pestering about why I had not asked her out as yet? What was I waiting for? So one day out of the blue, before she could go into her flirt routine I asked her out and much to my surprise she accepted. Well needless to say, the date never came off, she wound up canceling on me four times in a row; three of those times she called ahead to cancel, on the fourth occasion I was stood up and left standing in the rain outside of a cinema, because I wanted to give her the benefit of the doubt. Not too long after that I resigned from the job and went elsewhere. When I ran into her at the bank that was the first time I had seen or talked to her in a long time. After the usual pleasantries she reminded me that she still owed me a date from all those years ago; I told her it was no big deal and tried to leave. But she pleaded so I accepted, we had agreed to meet the following Friday to check out a movie and get something to eat afterwards.

For most of the week leading up to the date I had considered canceling the date, but I figured that I would once again give her the benefit of the doubt. When Friday finally rolled around my mood was one of anxiety as to if she would be there or if she would cancel on me yet again. I showed up relatively close to the time we agreed to meet and made my way to the food court, whatever anxiety and uneasiness I had been feeling seemed to drop off of my body as I saw her sitting by herself at one of the tables. Before I could even get within range of her my cell phone went off, it was her. As I was about to tell her to turn around she proceeded to tell me that something came up at home and that she would have to cancel once again. This was puzzling? Why was she telling me this? The answer soon revealed itself, it came in the form of another guy who took a seat next to her. Apparently she had made a date with some other guy, and waited till the last minute to cancel on me, how do you like that b******t?

I let her go on with her apologies and stuff, before I let her know that I was there looking directly at her and the other guy. She tried to apologize and wanted to explain, but I was not in the mood to hear any of it, after hanging up on her I turned off my phone and went straight home. For the remainder of the evening I was not in the best of moods, for the most part I felt so stupid for agreeing to go out with her again. I should have known that she would have done the same thing again, in the six years since I last saw her she has remained the same, if not gotten a whole lot worse in how she treats guys. I remember seeing her run after a guy that was ignoring her and treating her like crap, while ignoring guys that had been treating her with nothing but respect and courtesy. Not me and that woman ever again, never again will I allow that to happen.

For a while I was just about ready to give up on the women of my country, as it was beginning to seem as though I would not have a prayer in the world of getting the attention of the decent ones. Instead I seem to draw the odd, crazy, off tilter, semi-insane ones; why can’t they just ignore me like the normal rational ones do? Does the stealth effect wear off whenever they are around?
As Saturday rolled on I found something that helped to improve my mood, I had come across it earlier in the week while surfing around on the net. It was posted online as an essay/rant from a student attending The Wharton School of Business. Whoever the author may be, I for one am grateful for this essay as it talks about everything that guys like me have to go through from time to time. Here it is:

“Ode to the Nice Guys
This rant was written for the Wharton Undergraduate Journal
This is a tribute to the nice guys. The nice guys that finish last, that never become more than friends, that endure hours of whining and bitching about what assholes guys are, while disproving the very point. This is dedicated to those guys who always provide a shoulder to lean on but restrain themselves to tentative hugs, those guys who hold open doors and give reassuring pats on the back and sit patiently outside the changing room at department stores. This is in honor of the guys that obligingly reiterate how cute/beautiful/smart/funny/sexy their female friends are at the appropriate moment, because they know most girls need that litany of support. This is in honor of the guys with open minds, with laid-back attitudes, with honest concern. This is in honor of the guys who respect a girl’s every facet, from her privacy to her theology to her clothing style.
This is for the guys who escort their drunk, bewildered female friends back from parties and never take advantage once they’re at her door, for the guys who accompany girls to bars as buffers against the rest of the creepy male population, for the guys who know a girl is fishing for compliments but give them out anyway, for the guys who always play by the rules in a game where the rules favor cheaters, for the guys who are accredited as boyfriend material but somehow don’t end up being boyfriends, for all the nice guys who are overlooked, underestimated, and unappreciated, for all the nice guys who are manipulated, misled, and unjustly abandoned, this is for you.
This is for that time she left 40 urgent messages on your cell phone, and when you called her back, she spent three hours painstakingly dissecting two sentences her boyfriend said to her over dinner. And even though you thought her boyfriend was a chump and a jerk, you assured her that it was all ok and she shouldn’t worry about it. This is for that time she interrupted the best killing spree you’d ever orchestrated in GTA3 to rant about a rumor that romantically linked her and the guy she thinks is the most repulsive person in the world. And even though you thought it was immature and you had nothing against the guy, you paused the game for two hours and helped her concoct a counter-rumor to spread around the floor. This is also for that time she didn’t have a date, so after numerous vows that there was nothing “serious” between the two of you, she dragged you to a party where you knew nobody, the beer was awful, and she flirted shamelessly with you, justifying each fit of reckless teasing by announcing to everyone: “oh, but we’re just friends!” And even though you were invited purely as a symbolic warm body for her ego, you went anyways. Because you’re nice like that.
The nice guys don’t often get credit where credit is due. And perhaps more disturbing, the nice guys don’t seem to get laid as often as they should. And I wish I could logically explain this trend, but I can’t. From what I have observed on campus and what I have learned from talking to friends at other schools and in the workplace, the only conclusion I can form is that many girls are just illogical, manipulative bitches. Many of them claim they just want to date a nice guy, but when presented with such a specimen, they say irrational, confusing things such as “oh, he’s too nice to date” or “he would be a good boyfriend but he’s not for me” or “he already puts up with so much from me, I couldn’t possibly ask him out!” or the most frustrating of all: “no, it would ruin our friendship.” Yet, they continue to lament the lack of datable men in the world, and they expect their too-nice-to-date male friends to sympathize and apologize for the men that are jerks. Sorry, guys, girls like that are beyond my ability to fathom. I can’t figure out why the connection breaks down between what they say (I want a nice guy!) and what they do (I’m going to sleep with this complete ass now!). But one thing I can do, is say that the nice-guy-finishes-last phenomenon doesn’t last forever. There are definitely many girls who grow out of that train of thought and realize they should be dating the nice guys, not taking them for granted. The tricky part is finding those girls, and even trickier, finding the ones that are single.
So, until those girls are found, I propose a toast to all the nice guys. You know who you are, and I know you’re sick of hearing yourself described as ubiquitously nice. But the truth of the matter is, the world needs your patience in the department store, your holding open of doors, your party escorting services, your propensity to be a sucker for a pretty smile. For all the crazy, inane, absurd things you tolerate, for all the situations where you are the faceless, nameless hero, my accolades, my acknowledgement, and my gratitude go out to you. You do have credibility in this society, and your well deserved vindication is coming.”
Fu-zu Jen, SEAS/WH, 2003

I think that just about says it all. After all that happened last Friday, I’m not going to cast blame on all the women of T&T. Sure they may be the ones out there that will treat the decent nice guys like crap while they themselves get treated like crap by the stud, model, buff type guys. However there are the ones that will appreciate decent nice guys, and will eventually come around to notice them.
So to the ladies I say, the day will come when you will realize that the right one for you has been right in front of you all along. Just hope that it won’t be too late and you wind up loosing him so someone else, and to my fellow Nice Guys, our day in the sun is approaching. I really can’t say when, but as sure as the sun rises each day, our day will soon be here. All those long periods of being ignored and overlooked will soon come to an end, for not only will we get our just and right reward but we will also know what it will mean to be truly grateful for the good that has finally come out way.