Whoa! More like Woe!
The Tinder boy was already an hour late.
It was my first connection on the dating app and I really should have known better. The chatting had only been so-so, but his picture was cute, and what I knew about him seemed appealing. I had been advised by friends to just ask for what I wanted. So I proposed the meet-up at U-Bar. But he never showed, and then only texted he had forgotten about it three hours later.
I did what I supposed to do for the most part. I insisted on a public meetup (a must if you're going to do online dating). I had a plan to get home no matter what happened. I intended to pay my own way and let him take care of himself. I brought protection just in case. I was going to move forward because I wanted to and not because I was obligated or intoxicated. I have needs but I also have standards: I want to remember my first time with a man, and I want him to be sweet and solicitous.
Old me would have felt wretched and rejected and humiliated. That night I didn't even think twice about it and turned to my neighbor at the bar and started to talk. He seemed much more interesting. Put together. Successful. And handsome! And we just talked and flirted mildly. I touched his leg with my knee. I casually touched his back. It felt natural to do and neighborly.
We only half-watched the Super Bowl while chatting about travel and art. It was not really going to go anywhere it seemed. Just comradely really. We were fellow travelers in this big gay world. And I felt restored by the brief connection.
I got his number and a very chaste kiss when he decided it was time to go home. It was Sunday night after all. We both had work the next day. Maybe he'll call and maybe he won't. It's up to him. I would be flattered if he wanted to do something later, but my life does not depend upon it. I'll meet other fellow travelers on my journey and some of them will want to rub bodies together. Eventually.
My path is precious to me, and there is no point in hurrying along without control. Just let things happen in their due course. It's much more important to me to learn about this fabulous new world and meet people along the way. My body tells me it's more important to be seen, addressed, welcomed by others.
PS) Another friend of mine tells me that nine out of ten Tinder dates are no-shows. So I know it's not me but them. Why be on a site to meet new people if you don't actually meet them? And really if you think about it the whole thing is set up to make prospects as disposable as possible, sorted just on the most superficial of traits. I value myself much better than that.