lillibet: (Default)
[personal profile] lillibet
While I was in Northern Ireland last summer, I started making a list of all the stories I tell that I'd like to write down. This is one of them.

A few months after I moved to Berkeley I threw myself a birthday party. One of my friends brought along another guy from MIT, who hadn't realized it was my birthday and apologized for not bringing a present. I said he was plenty of present for me and he promptly put a bow around his neck. As the party wound down we ended up in my bed. Before anything much had happened, he paused to explain that he was in the midst of founding a start-up and didn't have time for a relationship and didn't want to engage with me under false pretenses. I appreciated his forthrightness and we went merrily on with the evening's activities.

So there we are, amorously involved and chatting playfully, when he suddenly looks down at me and asks "Do you know a guy named Dave Policar?" I laughed--this is not what I expect to hear from my lovers--and asked why. He said that we tell stories the same way, and I laughed some more and explained that we often even tell the same stories, and that we were former housemates and very good friends. Dave, by the way, was very amused when I told him this, and gave permission for his name to be used in this story.

On Sunday morning he thanked me for a lovely evening, I thanked him for a marvelous birthday present, and he asked for my number. I gave it to him, but didn't actually expect to hear from him, so I was surprised and pleased when he called me on Tuesday afternoon. He said that he was stuck in traffic after a very good meeting and had thought of me as someone he'd like to share that good news with. We chatted for twenty minutes or so and then he asked if I was free on Friday night. I said "What about the start-up?" and he explained that he didn't have meetings or need to be out of town that night and thought we might see a movie.

That sounded good to me, so we met up on Friday night, saw a movie and spent the night in my bed again. He once again explained that while he really enjoyed spending time with me, with the start-up at a crucial phase he really didn't have time for a relationship and hoped our date wouldn't raise expectations on my part. I said that was fine, I was glad to see him, all was well, and when we said goodbye the next morning I didn't really expect to hear from him again.

On Tuesday afternoon, he called me to say that he was thinking of me. We chatted a bit and he asked if I were free on Friday evening. We went out to dinner, spent the night together, had the same conversation and a lovely time and he left in the morning with no plans to see each other again.

Lather. Rinse. Repeat. For six weeks running.

On the seventh Tuesday he called and said that he had just bought a JEEP, so rather than getting together on Friday night, he'd like to take it off-roading on Saturday and invited me to join him. I drove down to his place in Palo Alto--he was paying a couple of thousand a month to rent a garage with no bathroom behind a house on University Ave--and we went from there up into the mountains and then down along the coast. We walked hand in hand along the beach at sunset and he told me how much he wanted to someday be married and have children. It was horribly romantic.

As night drew on we went back to his place, ate some take-out and settled in to watch the version of Pride and Prejudice with Jennifer Ehle and Colin Firth that his mom had just sent him. At midnight I asked if I should go. He said no and drew me closer to him on the couch. By 2am I couldn't keep my eyes open any longer and suggested that we should go to bed. He explained that he was happy to make up the couch for me, but that he had decided that we shouldn't have sex anymore, because he was afraid I was getting too attached. That woke me right up and after a few tense words I got in my car and drove forty-five minutes back to my home and figured that was the end of that.

On Tuesday afternoon he called me and asked if I were free on Friday. I explained that I was going to a party with my housemate and when he enthusiastically offered to come along I explained that would not be appropriate, as I didn't know my hosts and was, in fact, hoping to meet new people. He said "But Friday is my only free night this week! What am I supposed to do alone? You know we always spend time together on Fridays!" I pointed out that he was sounding very much like a man in a relationship with expectations and that while I would be happy to entertain future offers to spend time together on a case by case basis, he should not expect me to keep my time free for him.

He didn't contact me again. For five years. And then I got an email from him saying that he understood that I was back in Boston and married, and so was he, and inviting the two of us to get together with him and his wife for a movie followed by dinner at their apartment in Cambridge. I accepted and we met them and had a very fun conversation with him and his wife on the way to the movie. We all enjoyed the movie and on the way back I was chatting with his wife while he and Jason talked tech, when she asked exactly when he and I had met.

"Well," I said, "We started dating on my 27th birthday and that was in..."

"Dating who?" she asked, sharply. I explained that I was referring to her husband and she said "Wait, you two dated?!"

"Yeah," I said. "We dated casually for about six weeks. It didn't stick," I added, a bit obviously.

We continued to their lovely apartment, had a very nice dinner while she continued to watch me carefully and the conversation got more and more stilted until we took our leave without lingering over coffee.

And I have never heard from him again.

Date: 2017-08-09 05:56 am (UTC)
sovay: (I Claudius)
From: [personal profile] sovay
he was paying a couple of thousand a month to rent a garage with no bathroom behind a house on University Ave

Is this more indicative of the housing market in Palo Alto or the guy from MIT?

Date: 2017-08-09 08:58 am (UTC)
kelkyag: eye-shaped patterns on birch trunk (birch eyes)
From: [personal profile] kelkyag
Humans ...

I have to wonder what he told his wife before inviting you and Jason to dinner, though.

Date: 2017-08-10 08:29 pm (UTC)
kelkyag: eye-shaped patterns on birch trunk (birch eyes)
From: [personal profile] kelkyag
He might not've realized it'd be an issue, if he hadn't introduced anyone he'd previously dated to his wife before. But thinking about how situations read to other people doesn't seem to be one of his strong points, at least from this story.

Date: 2017-08-09 11:05 am (UTC)
dcltdw: (Default)
From: [personal profile] dcltdw
What... a strange way to live one's life. (Them, not you.)

The bit about Dave Policar is hilarious. :)

Date: 2017-08-09 01:59 pm (UTC)
gale_storm: (Default)
From: [personal profile] gale_storm
Whoau. Man, oh man, what a hoot! Yeah, what would he have told his wife before you all had dinner together, gotta wonder...

Date: 2017-08-09 05:23 pm (UTC)
chanaleh: Henry VIII: "I'VE GOT 99 PROBLEMS, OF WHICH BITCHES DOTH COMPRISE 6" (bitches)
From: [personal profile] chanaleh
"What am I supposed to do alone? You know we always spend time together on Fridays!" LOL. You handled that one correctly, all right.

Date: 2017-08-10 02:50 am (UTC)
whitebird: (Default)
From: [personal profile] whitebird
An odd relationship.

I enjoyed the David Policer bit, that was amusing. As you started on describing the early parts of the relationship, I could see a kind of endearing thing going on and was starting to think, "Oh, this is how she met Jason?", but then, yeah, wrong turn real fast, and then it just got weirder.

Date: 2017-08-10 02:54 pm (UTC)
coraline: (Default)
From: [personal profile] coraline
yeah, I was hoping against hope this was a "and then this person got their head of their butt and got less entitled and now we're friends" story... alas.
what is wrong with people, anyways?

Date: 2017-08-11 01:23 am (UTC)
amaebi: (Default)
From: [personal profile] amaebi
Crazy people.

Lordie.

ETA: Er, I hope it was obvious I didn't mean you.
Edited Date: 2017-08-11 01:25 am (UTC)

Date: 2017-08-12 02:42 am (UTC)
dpolicar: (Default)
From: [personal profile] dpolicar
Entirely tangentially, I have forgotten how it was that I knew the guy in the first place.

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