The night before my awkward incident with Nick, I was at the same bar with all of my coworkers. We were all enjoying a much-needed night out. I went up to the bar to get myself another drink and had to delicately wedge myself between the bar, a chair, and another person. That other person was a familiar face from around the area in which I work, but I didn't say anything.
His back was facing me when I approached the bar, but he turned to me as I was waiting to get the bartender's attention. I saw him look at me for a moment and then he said, "The bartender's name is Rich." [This was a different bartender from the one that asked me out.] I was startled, and sort of stammered, because I knew the bartender, the bartender knew me, and I certainly frequented that bar more than this guy. I can say that because I'm there often enough to know that he is not.
Rich looked over at me and called out, "Hey WOTL! Another round?" Indeed.
The guy at the bar told me I looked familiar, where did he know me from? And at that moment I realized... Ohhhhhhhhh. Yes. This is how these things start, right? He was kind of sizing me up, wasn't he? Turns out we sort of work together, remotely, in that he works in the courthouse and I work in the courthouse. We struck up a conversation and chatted while I tried to look vivacious and fetching. Not someone I'd seek out, but he seems relatively normal. Looks like a regular good guy. Not manicured, not flashy or fancy, just wearing sneakers and jeans and a decent shirt. The conversation came easily and was enough to keep me interested. Which left me with no other option than to leave. [Right? I've heard that hard-to-get is the most successful tactic.]
I wrapped up the conversation and returned to my table, where it had not escaped my coworkers notice that I was engaged in conversation with a male. I shrugged, and played indifferent, but I was wondering, is he interested? Is he single? Would he take me out on a nice, normal date? Will he come over and talk to me?
I walked over later when I realized he wasn't going to infiltrate the ranks of my office to talk to me. We chatted again, again it was pleasant, and again I realized that I guess I should play it cool. I spent the rest of the evening with my coworkers, this time trying to position myself in a way that would permit him to approach me if he wanted to, in a way that hopefully wouldn't make him uncomfortable or require him to be brazen. Seeing that he wasn't going to come by again, I went over to let him know that I'd be leaving, and to say goodbye.
Then he asked me the question that made me really believe that he had some hint of interest in me. "Will you be coming back next week?" I said yeah, probably, at least for a little while.
One week passes. I go back to the bar, despite the fact that I have a bad cold, have gotten no sleep all week, and have to be at work early for a long day the next day. I wear a cute outfit, I accessorize, I'm having a good hair day. The only reason I went is because he asked me if I'd be there, and if he was going to show up, I wanted to make sure I was there.
He never showed.