Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Perplexing: 3 & 4, of 4

I was working a full day in court.  I had been spending a lot of time in that courtroom, so I became buddy buddy with the court staff that week.  There was one officer in particular that I rely on to change my clients from the "not ready to see the judge" to "ready to see the judge" status.  Essentially, I rely on him so heavily to make my job happen that he could REALLY make or break my day. 
He and I get along well.  I am not in any way attracted to him, but he makes me laugh, and he definitely makes work more enjoyable.  He's middle-aged, married, children.  This court officer had mentioned that we should lunch together.  I always lunch with my coworkers, because it's valuable time to pick their brains and benefit from their years of experience.  I didn't think much of it, because it's not uncommon for court officers and attorneys to lunch together. 
But something changed... he was doing a lot of, um, TOUCHING me.  Rubbing my arm, my back, petting my hair, etc.  To make a short story long, I started avoiding him and he kept getting more passive aggressive with me.  It made me nervous, that I rely so heavily on him in order to get my work done, and he was clearly not pleased with me.  Things were awkward, until we had a confrontation. 
"I don't see what the problem is," he hissed several days later, as I passed him in court.  The way the officer reacted made me believe that I made the right decision.  There was definitely something weird. I was being super friendly to him, because I could tell that he was not happy with me.  "I just wanted to have lunch, that's all.  I don't like eating lunch with all those other people.  It could have been just the two of us."  When I left court that day, I think we were ok.  He asked me for a kiss on the cheek, and I reluctantly complied.
Coworker Jack snorted in disgust when I told him about it afterwards.  "You don't want to hang out with him but then you stick your tongue down his throat?  No wonder you're having creepy guy problems.  I don't feel bad for you."
Way back in February, one night at a bar, I was hard-core macking on a guy that I thought was totally hot.  We chatted for a good part of the night, on and off.  I was really, really hitting on him.  It was messy.  I was messy.  Anyway, several times, he patted me on the head.  Yes that's right.  He PATTED MY HEAD.  How patronizing!
I saw him again recently and mentioned to a friend that I thought he was hot.  My friend, on a later date and unbeknownst to me, told him that I thought he was hot.  What does he say?  "Whose your friend?  Her?  Yeah, I'm single. Tell her to come up and talk to me sometime."
I saw him shortly thereafter, and then my friend disclosed the aforementioned conversation.  So I caught this guy looking at me a few times, but I just walked out in disgust.  Yeah, you're hot.  But you know what?  I hit on you once and you PATTED MY HEAD.  I'm so over it.
One commenter asks, What's the big deal?  Well, there's isn't really a big deal.  I'm just sort of annoyed.  I've had a pretty good summer, once I went through the withdrawal of dating anxiety.  At some point, I guess I came to rely on having men drama in my life.  On Memorial Day, I finally resolved to just STOP.  Just take a break.  Get all the bad vibes out of my system.  Get my head on straight.  Reach some sort of emotional equilibrium.  Enjoy myself.  And you know what?  It worked.  I had a fun summer.  I hung out with friends.  I went to baseball games.  I took some time off.  I read books.  I watched movies.  I hung out with my roommate and the dog.  I spent a lot of time outdoors.  And I really, really enjoyed it.
Perplexing #s 1-4 all happened in the SAME WEEK.  I started wondering, is it me?  Is it something I did?  Did I somehow do something that makes people think I'm in love with them?  What am I doing that's so inappropriate?  Am I doomed to lead a life of awkward interactions like these?  And what about #2?  Was I wrong?  Or was he actually interested in me?  Why didn't he come back?  Did something come up, or did he never give it a second thought?  What the fuck is #4's problem?  Is this change of heart a mere ploy to get some action?  How could it be anything more than that?  There can't be any genuine interest.  What am I supposed to do next time I see #1? 
The only reason I wrote about all of these things is because I was annoyed.  I managed to have a good couple of months and straighten myself out, without any of this weird anxiety.  Suddenly four people interfered with my chaos- and anxiety-free emotional state.  It was uninvited.  And suddenly I found myself doing exactly what made me take a break to begin with - I began analyzing, fretting, worrying, examining, thinking.  I was knocked off my wagon of emotional peace and contentment, and I don't like it one bit.


Audacity said...

Coworker Jack snorted in disgust when I told him about it afterwards. "You don't want to hang out with him but then you stick your tongue down his throat? No wonder you're having creepy guy problems. I don't feel bad for you."

I might have to agree with Jack on this one. If some creepy married guy is clearly hitting on you, the last thing you should do is kiss him on the cheek. It only encourages him by making him think that maybe, just maybe.. he does have a chance.

Heather said...

Men can be perplexing. I never understand why men who seem interested don't follow through and why some men seem to think that my being friendly means I want to have sex with them.