Hot Dog Guy and I were off to a great start. But, it took us two weeks before we could both find time for a much-anticipated second date.
Would we do dinner again?
Would it be as nice as The Chop House?
Would he bring flowers? Or, do you only get flowers once?
It ended up being none of the above. Rather than taking me out to dinner, he instead asked me if he could cook me dinner at his house.
At his house? For our second date?
All I could hear were the warning bells going off: Carrie, he wants you for dinner, not over for dinner! Of course he wants you to go to his house, because that’s where he keeps his BED!”
1bed noun \ˈbed\
1: a piece of furniture on or in which to lie and sleep
2 : a place of sex relations
3 : marital relationship
4 : close association
Dammit! Why couldn’t he be a gentleman and just take me out to dinner, again?
But, my hormones were singing another tune: It would be nice to check out his cooking skills and have some alone time with him before I take off to New York City for two long weeks…
My mind starts flipping through numerous excuses and justifications of why I should go…
“I’m an adult.”
“Let the cards fall where they may!”
“You are leaving for two, long weeks! That’s a really long time to be away!”
“He’s obviously into you – he won’t be that guy.”
“You are in your prime, Carrie!”
Needless to say, my hormones won the argument and I agreed to the dinner date at his house.
I arrived at his house at 7:30pm wearing one of my girlie summer skirt and heels. Dinner was served promptly at 8:00pm – along with a bottle of red wine. Hot Dog Guy cooked us Alaskan King Crab legs for dinner – not that it was that difficult to make, just add water, steam, and voila! Dinner! But, it was damn delicious!
After dinner, we sat outside on his deck underneath the stars and continued our evening together. Everything was going great, until I saw him get out of his chair and walk towards the end of the deck and light up a cigarette.
“What are you doing?”
“I’m having a cigarette.”
“But, you don’t smoke – or at least that’s what it said on your Match profile.”
“I’m only having one. Besides, I’m not really a smoker,” he said as he took a drag, “I only smoke when I drink. Tonight, I just want to let my hair down.”
I thought it was a real odd comment. He only smokes when he drinks? Uhm, that would make him a smoker, right?
I wasn’t going to let one cigarette bother me, but then one cigarette became five.
In a row.
Lied on profile cancels out fresh roses from the florist on first date.
five ten points*
We ended up going through two bottles of wine and stayed up until 2:00am. It had been a night filled with conversation, kissing, and more kissing, so when he asked me to spend the night, my drunk-ass hormones said, “Yes.”
Hot Dog Guy was 6’3″ and a little over-weight, so sleeping with him was definitely a whole different experience. I was used to someone more svelte, like hottie Mr. Audi. Both men were much like the vehicles they drove. Mr. Audi was a lot like his convertible Porsche 911 and Hot Dog Guy, well, he was more like his big SUV: Comfortable, but different, yet still a great ride. Just not as fast or agile.
The following morning at breakfast, I started noticing the push/pull, mixed messages thing start to kick in. As soon as I order my organic breakfast from the menu, he immediately challenged my choice and began to preach about how organic farming causes more pollution than regular large farming practices. Then he quizzed me on my political beliefs and disagreed with everything I had to say. His self-doubt must have surfaced, too, because he said, “I’m not sure what you are doing with me, Carrie. You could have anyone you want.”
But, because I always try to be Positive frickin’ Pollyanna, I decided that it was too soon to throw in the towel. Instead, I took something negative and made it into something positive: If Matalin and Carville could make it work, then why couldn’t we?
During the time I was in NYC for two weeks, we did managed to keep our conversations away from politics and eventually we were back to texting each other morning, noon, and night. It only took four days into my trip before he was asking me to come home early.
HDG: Jesus. I can’t take it already. I need to see you so I can rub your feet and cook for you. I’ve got a fire going in the fireplace. I wish you were here with me.
When I came back from NYC, Hot Dog Guy asked me to a Red Sox game. He had three tickets and told me I could bring a friend. I decided to invite Becky, who had always been a great judge of character, and I figured I could get her opinion on Hot Dog Guy. My problem was that he spoke to me in length via text, but not really in person, unless there was wine involved.
It ended up being a cold night, but watching the game was still a lot of fun. Becky, being the awesome friend that she is, really put an effort to talk to my date. At first, there was a little bit of a struggle, but before I knew it, those two were chatting it up a storm – even up until we dropped her off at her house. Go, Becky!
The following day, she had this to say: “Carrie, all you have to do is speak his language – talk about the things that really interested him, like his job, his kids, and…his job and he’ll open right up. You just need to give him time.”
It made sense but, intuitively, I still felt like Hot Dog Guy was at times trying to push me away.
One night, after being out with friends, my head started swirling and I did something so out of character
*Insert spooky music here*
I drove by his house one night to make sure that his car was the only one in the driveway.
Thankfully, when I went his house, I only saw his truck. I was relieved, but now I had become “that girl.”
The following morning I get a text from Hot Dog Guy:
HDG: Hey, I’m in Atlanta. Supposed to be in Detroit. Did you drive by last night?
How the hell did he find out that I drove by in the middle of the night? Shit! Did he hear the rumble of the exhaust on Red Rocket? Is it really that loud? I thought I was pretty stealth when I drove by!
I knew I had two choices here – I could lie and say it wasn’t me, or I could just own it. The way I saw it, if I did the deed, I needed to own it. So, I did.
HDG: You should’ve stopped in. Why did you do that?
CARRIE: Because, I’m really uncomfortable with the fact that we are sleeping together, but that you are still active on Match.com. I’ve had my profile down for four weeks now, while you’ve kept yours up.
HDG: Then why don’t you say that instead of checking up on me? Funny, I didn’t have the boys last night, but I had to deal with my cell phone issues. Went to bed early and just happened to get up to pee and see you.
CARRIE: I did bring this up when I was in NYC. Don’t you remember my text, “I see you are still searching on Match…”? I didn’t want to bring it up before, because I don’t want to put unnecessary pressure on what should unfold naturally. I don’t second guess people, unless there is a big red flag waving in front of my face. The match thing was that red flag. So, let me ask you then: Why are you still on Match.com?
HDG: Because I like it. It’s interesting as hell. The equivalent of people watching. When you were in NY we met each other twice. I like you, but I’m not jumping into anything that fast, nor should you. I’m not saying I’m playing the field, because I’m not. But, I’m also taking things slow, especially now that I’m not going to see you weeks on end again.
When he came back from his 6-day trip, things got better, again. I starting spending the night, and we were back to texting each other all day long. On one particular day, I decided to send him a few pictures of me – “G” rated of course.
HDG: OMG. More, please!
CARRIE: I’m hoping to distract you so much that you’ll cancel your dinner plans tonight and come home to me!
HDG: YES, IT’S WORKING. WHAT ARE YOU TRYING TO GET ME TO MARRY YOU OR SOMETHING? JESUS!!!
CARRIE: Awesome! It’s working!
HDG: I just cancelled my dinner plans. You’re going to get me in trouble.
CARRIE: Yes, I am!
HDG: OMG. You are amazing.
CARRIE: I’m glad you have finally realized this!
HDG: I did, the day you walked out the door, to get into my car.
CARRIE: Well, you had me fooled for a while. I thought I was going to have to mark you down as another guy who surely must have had a lobotomy or something…
HDG: HAHA. Why is that??? I had my reservations and I’m still cautious as you are. No kids was against my rule.
ME: No kids? Explain. You’re being cautious? I’m putting my best foot forward and I just ask the same of you.
HDG: When I first separated, I swore I wouldn’t date girls without kids. Jesus. I’m too tired to discuss this.
ME: Why wouldn’t you date someone who didn’t have kids? I am not a bad person just because I don’t have kids! 😉
HDG: Because of tough schedules. But, you have been so understanding – you scare me.
ME: But, if I had kids then we’d really never see each other. Of course I understand. Those are your kids! I’m not selfish like that. I scare you. You’re being silly.
HDG: No. You are way too perfect. What’s wrong with you? Are you a psycho or something?
HGD: On the road. I’ll be home around 7:00ish. Wear jeans. I love you in jeans. You’re coming to KC’s with me, right?
Damn right I was. We went to KC’s Rib Shack for dinner and then headed home for another great night in each others arms.
HDG: You are amazing. I like you, which is scaring me by the way.
CARRIE: Why is that so scary for you???
HDG: Because it just is. I’m not used to it.
CARRIE: What is “it”?
HDG: Liking a girl. You like me saying that don’t you?
CARRIE: Yes, I want YOU to say it, so you can see how silly it sounds. Why is that so scary to you? Afraid of getting hurt? To feel vulnerable? Liking a girl…isn’t that the whole point of dating?
HDG: Ha. Yes, I’m aware of that, but I haven’t found anyone that mmmmm. Ahhh… Ya – you know. Hmmm…. Scary!
ME: What about the co-worker you dated for a year???
HDG: I liked her. But she was like a best friend. It was different. Great sex and a lot of fun, but at the end of the day it wasn’t lasting in my eyes. I didn’t like her telling me to change or do something that should be normal in a relationship. You, on the other hand, scare me.
The following night, we sat outside on his deck under the stars and tied one on. Well, he did – I can only drink so much. Knowing that there was alcohol involved, I knew that I needed to take everything he said with a grain of salt. And boy did he say a lot! First, he asked me to a concert with him to see Flock of Seagulls on Wednesday, and he asked me to go on a trip with him to Mexico January.
Then, it was confession time! Not only did he confess that he had deliberately pushed me away several times, but now he felt he was falling in love with me. I remember sitting on his kitchen counter with my glass of wine, bug-eyed and in disbelief as he continued.
“I need to tell you something, but I know I shouldn’t, Carrie. But I really want to tell you something, but I can’t.”
Finally, after I convinced him that I wasn’t there to judge him he put his arms around me and whispered in my ear, “Carrie, please don’t hurt me.”
Unexpectedly, my mother goes into the hospital. The first day he was supportive, but then it fell to shit after that.
HDG: Hey. How’s it going today? Are you coming see Flock of Seagulls tonight with me?
CARRIE: Wow, I haven’t heard from you all day. I’m still in the hospital with my mom.
HDG: Are you coming to the concert?
CARRIE: Call me.
We have a brief conversation. I tell Hot Dog Guy that I was just too emotionally drained to go to a concert.
CARRIE: If you are around later, I could really use a hug.
HDG: I doubt I will be. Can’t believe I’m at the concert by myself. WTF?
CARRIE: We are not on the same page.
CARRIE: Good morning. How was the concert?
CARRIE: Really? No response? C’mon…
CARRIE: Mom is still in the hospital.
HDG: Sorry to hear that. My phone was left in my car all day. Hope your mother feels better.
His phone was left in the car all day long? Really? An executive with two kids. REALLY?
FAST FORWARD ONE WEEK
CARRIE: Why have you been MIA?
HDG: I’m just getting this. I over slept. I’m in Arkansas. In a nutshell, you made the comment that we weren’t on the same page and I didn’t hear from you. So, I expected you were done which made me think that you see right. I’m swamped and have the kids many weekends in a row coming up. I’m not a good candidate for a relationship. This is the first I’m hearing from you. Sorry it’s a text. I really have to run. I’m being picked up in 15 mins.
CARRIE: That’s crap. You are so afraid of getting hurt, you are self-sabotaging this. You find what you want and then you freak out. You don’t have time for a relationship, but you have time to be on Match looking for one almost every day? That’s bullshit.
HDG: Well, you are entitled to your opinions. Sorry you feel the way you do. I hope everything turns out well for your mom.
I had too much to say in a text, so he got one of my infamous emails – it was more for me than it was for him:
Look, I’m not looking for marriage or to move in with someone. I have bigger fish to fry than to think about that right now. I enjoy life…I just want someone to share it with – but it has to be with someone who doesn’t have one foot out the door all the time, because they are too scared of _________ (fill in the blank with whatever you are scared of).
I don’t date more than one person at a time. I don’t need the validation. I wanted to at least give you, and this relationship, that respect. There have always been guys on the sidelines waiting for me, and that’s why I took my profile down, because I found someone who I really liked. You, on the other hand, have always kept your profile up, indicating that you have one foot out the door, which has always hurt my feelings. And, if that’s how you felt, then really you had no business sleeping with me.
You can tell me all you want that you have your kids for the next few weekends and you are not a good candidate for a relationship, but it’s such a contradiction when you keep logging into Match.com everyday. I’m not angry, I’m disappointed, because your behavior would frustrate anyone.
Apparently, you need someone difficult to date. Well, that’s not going to be me. You have a difficult mother and a difficult ex-wife – that right there should be a tell-tale sign that this is all you can relate to.
Sooner or later, you’re going to realize your mistake, but, unfortunately for you, you know what they say about opportunity…
FAST FORWARD THREE WEEKS
JULIE: So, how are you?
CARRIE: I’m good and doing everything in my power to not sleep with The Teacher! He’s very sweet, but I’m just not there yet.
JULIE: Wow. Has it come up? LOL.
CARRIE: Well, we were supposed to see a movie last night, but because of the time change, we missed it, and we had nothing else planned, so we chilled at his place. We ended up watching the Patriots game and had heavy make-out sessions during every commercial break! Clearly, I slept with HDG too soon and I don’t want to make that same mistake again. I’m still really hurt that he just changed his mind about me. Fucker. He said he’s not a good candidate for a relationship, but he’s back on Match.com? PRICK!
JULIE: HDG. He was a douche. What a tool. “Please, Carrie…just don’t hurt me. Whaaaahhh…”
And there you have it. Hot Dog Guy and his issues. Oh, well, back to the drawing board!!!