Friday, September 08, 2006

The One That Got Away

I have a firm belief that every person has a sob story about The One That Got Away. Unfortunately, it's usually not that they actually got away, it was that they were unceremoniously tossed out and the tosser lives to regret it. With my complete lack of dating success lately, I've thought more and more about The One That Got Away (TOTGA), and wished that I could turn back the clock and give that one another go-round.

[Cue the wavy flashback music, or if you like, imagine Wayne and Garth waving their hands and going "doodleedoo doodleedoo"]

Long, long ago when I was a younger and more foolish person (or, as some would call it, my early twenties), I had a boyfriend. This boyfriend was pretty much a disaster all around: as a boyfriend, as a roommate, as a functioning member of society. I know that I've given him this name before, but I can't remember which blog I did it in, so this boyfriend was the Speed Freak (so named because of his fondness for the prescription drug Adderol, which is like Ritalin for grown-ups). The Speed Freak and I had a very tumultuous relationship and we were constantly breaking up and getting back together. After a particularly messy break-up, I decided that I needed to get right back into action and start dating other people. I needed to get my mind off of the SF and onto someone new. So what did I do?

That's right! I tried (for the Very First Time) internet dating! It actually makes me laugh now after this sad, sad round of dating, that TOTGA was someone that I met on the internet.

At this point, internet dating was becoming more widespread, but was nowhere near the creepy mainstream thing that it's become with the growing popularity of Match and eHarmony. I decided to take a chance and post a personals ad on Craigslist. I probably ended up going out with about 12 or 15 guys that had responded to my ad, and overall it was a really good experience. Unfortunately you can't meet normal guys on CL anymore, so don't even bother. After placing my ad though, being the fickle girl that I am, I also proceeded to read ads that guys were placing. Most of these ads are terribly creepy offers of "generosity" for a "discrete" young girl who would like some "fun" with a "distinguished" gentleman. Ick. But...

One day I stumbled across this ad that spoke to me. It was an astoundingly well-written plea for a girl who was: down-to-earth, normal, lower maintenance, not afraid to get her hands dirty. I thought wow! this could really be me, so I took a chance and answered his ad. The response was quick and the spark was immediate. We emailed constantly for nearly two weeks, exchanged pictures, talked about everything. Finally, we set a date. We met for dinner at this great Brazilian restaurant in Hollywood (he lived there too, and geographic desirability is a big deal in LA) and I could not have been more pleasantly surprised. He was tall, far better looking than his photo suggested, and just as good in person as he was over email. We drank wine, we ate, we talked, we clicked. We had an incredible goodnight kiss leaning against my car, which was parked right in front of the Wendy's at Sunset and La Brea. I went home with stars in my eyes and butterflies in my stomach. TOTGA and I continued the emailing the next day, when he proposed the second date: cooking dinner at his place. I was so excited, and knew that things were going amazingly well. Then, it happened.

The Speed Freak called me. He begged forgiveness. He told me he loved me. He told me he couldn't live without me and that he had been an idiot. He cried. I put him off, I told him it was too late, that it was over, but the seed was planted. I started thinking about him again. I started remembering the good times, how much I cared for him. I started having doubts about staying broken-up.

That's when I did it. The dumbest thing that I've done in my dating life to-date. I broke it off with TOTGA. I told him (before that magical second date could happen) that I wasn't ready to move on, that I had an ex that I still had feelings for. He was upset, he felt misled (which he wasn't wrong about), he knew what I did not: that I was making a Huge Mistake. But I did it anyway. Although I started to regret it almost immediately, I went back to SF and suffered for another 6 months before we ended it for good.

I tried to keep in touch with TOTGA, which I realize now was also selfish. I was hoping to back-burner him in case the SF fell through again. We emailed half-heartedly a couple of times, enough for me to find out that he ended up getting serious with the next girl that he dated. About a year later, long after the drama with SF was over, I tried to email him one more time. I apologized for my deplorable behavior and hoped that he would reply that he'd never stopped thinking about me and then he'd propose marriage and we'd live Happily Ever After. Sadly, I never heard from him again. He truly Got Away.

Lyrics of the Day

"Tell me, tell me that your sweet love hasn't died. Give me, give me one more chance to keep you satisfied." Willie Nelson You Were Always on My Mind


Julie said...

It's too bad you can't email him this post.

LB said...

I wish that I thought there was a prayer of him responding if I did. *sigh* The foolishness of youth.