"I dwell in possibility" ~Emily Dickinson

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The awkward things singles experience.

Posted on: 4.29.2013

I've made a conscientious effort to treat random guys who happen to dive into uncomfortable conversations with me with at least minimal respect. It always bothers me when I see a woman treat a man like a pig or a perv just because he “dared” to ask her out.  I haven’t always felt this way.  I have certainly done my fair share of ‘looking down my nose’ at men and I always feel badly about it afterward. 

*Disclaimer: I do recognize that this is all circumstantial. If a guy really is acting in a substandard way, then by all means, don’t say “I’m flattered, but no thank you!” I think, perhaps, just a solid “no” accompanied by a stern and displeased look (at the least) is absolutely called for.* 

When it comes to random, off-the-street, never met this guy in my life, conversations that happen to include a guy asking me out, it is very unlikely that I’ll say yes. (I just don’t love the idea of going on a date with a complete stranger with whom I have no known connection, maybe that’ll change at some point.) But even though I turn those offers down, I try to say no in a respectful and respectable way. 

Okay, so here’s the part that gets really awkward.... what about those times when I cant tell if it’s a joke or not!? Ugh, it’s miserably uncomfortable. And that’s the truth. 

This happened to me just the other day and even though I don’t usually share these stories publicly, this one is just almost too humiliating to keep quiet about: 

So a solicitor came into the office. (The company I work for is so small that we don’t employ a secretary and we get a total of about one call per month because most of our communication happens online. A secretary would be kind of pointless, so I sit at the front desk even though I am not the secretary. Anyway, moving on.) I saw him coming into the office and I recognized him because I had just seen him as I was walking out of the juice place I went to for lunch. After initially greeting him I said “I just saw you at *name of juiceplace.*” His response was “really!? I don’t remember seeing you!” {You lie, mister. You looked straight at me, nodded your head, smiled, and raised your hand in an almost wave... I’m pretty sure you did, indeed, see me.}  {Perhaps he suffers from the same malady as Dory, I guess I should give him some credit.} 

He was selling make-up for some company so he asked me if I was interested in make-up, I said that I wasn’t a big make-up girl {although I do wear it} so not really. To which he responded “ah, yes, natural beauty, I can tell.” {I gather you’re a smooth talker, sir, but can you even count the number of females you’ve used that line on!?} I blushed none-the-less. Darn it. 

He proceeded to tell me all about his product in one long-winded breath to which I responded “I really am not interested, thank you.” In return he said “Not interested in the make up? Or in me?” oh good grief. 

Me: “the make-up?”  -- I didn’t realize we were talking about two things simultaneously! Besides, I’m 99.8% positive you’re joking/being a slick-talking salesman. 

Him: “In that case {reaches out to shake my hand} my name is ___I forgot his name!___, I’m single, and I’m an *Insert astrological sign here.* Are you interested?” 

Me: after what felt like a 5 minute pause to determine what to say next and to discern if I should be sincere in my rejection of a real question or playful in my rejection of a joke. Can’t you just feel the dilemma going on here? .... I honestly don’t know which way to jump..... “Are you serious?” 

Him: “Yes, how about 9 o’clock tomorrow night?”

Me: Another miserably long pause to my total dismay. “Well, I’m in the middle of my work day so I’m a little taken aback by this conversation.” {Ugh. how stupid.}

Him: Looks straight at me silently. 

Me: “So I think probably not. Thank you though.” 

Him: “Oh, okay then. Are you interested in any curling irons or straighteners?” {Oh!! So you were just being a smooth talking salesman. Do you even know how hard it was for me to figure out a way to be kind to you while I said “no”!?}

And this was all because I couldn’t figure out if he was joking. 

But it's not over....
I've mentioned that the company I work for is small right? I'm pretty sure everyone at work heard the. Entire. Thing. 

I basically wanted to evaporate. It would have solved a lot of problems. 


  1. Oh my word.
    Cringing. (A little laughing just because you described this scene SO WELL, but mostly cringing for you.)

    1. I did my fair share of cringing afterward too. Yikes! :-)

  2. Oh my goodness! I'm laughing so hard and yet sinking into my chair while reading this. What a terrible situation to be in! 😳

    1. It WAS!!! :-( But if when I'm in a certain mood when I think about it, it can be mostly funny. But only when I'm in that very specific mood. Otherwise it's just terribly embarrassing. :)

  3. Oh that's cringe worthy for sure! I however, was always one of those rude girls. I absolutely hate being embarrassed in those kind of situations, so when I was single, I was very cold towards guys. Not friendly in the slightest most of the time lol I used it as more of an offensive move to ward off unwanted attention! It's a wonder I snagged the great guy I did! :)

    1. I was the same way. I think I could have been called "cold" toward guys in general for most of high school. It wasn't until I was around 21 or so that I had a bit of a change of heart regarding my treatment of them. Even still, though, sometimes I have to battle my first instinct in these situations because my default mode would definitely be "prickly!" :)

  4. Oh dear. I would have been even more tongue tied than you! I honestly have no idea how one is supposed to react to something like that. You handled it well, considering the weirdness of the whole situation. :)


    1. Well thank you. I tried to handle it as well as possible, but sometimes the mind just can't quite force the tongue to say what it should say. My face was definitely "rosy" for a while afterward... Oh jeez. :)


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