Home Renovation and Online Dating

Headline: International Accent Sets Tone For Home Decor

I decided to take a break from dating and  review where I’ve been the last year or two. I think I’ve mentioned this before — I compare meeting men to visiting countries. Strange men sitting across from me at a restaurant, listening to them talk about themselves, their lives, thoughts, aspirations and watching them eat and drink, eye contact, how they dress and present themselves, is as foreign to me as landing in a foreign country.

Take Liverpool_Man. I met up with him around Christmas a couple years ago. I was in a run of bad luck. My roommate Robert (whom I will bring up in a future reveal) moved out unexpectedly and left me a Dear Roommate letter in my silverware drawer where he usually leaves me money for the month’s rent. In the envelope was a beautifully written letter in strong masculine handwriting apologizing for all that he’s put me through and that a portion of the rent was enclosed. The remainder would be forthcoming ASAP. Oh, and he also mentioned that the thousand dollars I spent to re-carpet and paint his room — he would be more than happy to reimburse me in the very near future.

Well, I was happy about the future income, but short considerable money right before Christmas, a room that needed a lot of work, and feeling the loss of someone who had become a close friend and confidante.

I was involved in a car accident the next day. Unhurt, but my vehicle was ‘undriveable’ and I would have to pay the deductible. I felt shaken up by the sudden changes in my life. The cheery Christmas music that played everywhere I went mocked me, or so I felt. My place felt empty and cold. I had five days off and I knew I’d be spending them ripping out the spare room carpet and painting the walls. I enjoy this kind of work and figured it would take my mind off the anxiety of not having that extra money coming in.

Liverpool_Man wanted to meet for coffee the day I had the carpets removed. I was just beginning to paint the walls. It was an extremely cold day. I wrote back and agreed to meet, because I needed a break. I met him at the clock tower on main street. The roads and sidewalks were treacherous with ice but we still ventured on both bundled up and chatty as we walked.

Just as we parted I pulled one of those multi-screwdriver sets from my pocket.

“Can you show me how to work this thing? I’ve tried and tried, and even looked it up on the internet. I decided to bring it and ask any man I run into if he can show me.”

Liverpool-Man puzzled over it for a few minutes, turning it this way and that. He scratched his head and said he’d take it home and work on it a little more. This wasn’t a good sign. I went home and began painting the room and took little breaks to read any emails that arrived.

He wrote lengthy and romantic letters, filled with references to the Beatles Abbey Road and A Hard Day’s Night albums. If I Fell was featured in his first email to me after our walk. He sent me a link to Youtube and I read the lyrics carefully. The last few lines:

So I hope you see that I
would love to love you
And that she will cry
when she learns we are two
If I fell in love with you
*

…kinda sounded like someone was out for a bit of revenge. I soon learned that his wife deserted him and his two sons. She did this right after he was laid off from a high paying job and at a time when he had lost all his manly confidence. He took his two boys on the ferry and began a new life for them on the mainland. But, this only happened a few months ago.

He grew up in Liverpool and I enjoyed his stories of what it was like for him in that gray industrial city. I loved how he called his Dad : Da. And when he said goodbye he said : Ta ra!  But after one week of seeing each other he began to refer to me as his wife.

“David, we’re not married,” I protested when he relayed to me what he said when the Bank Greeter had asked him if he needed help. David was waiting for me on a sofa by the door. He told the woman that he was waiting for his wife: me.

“But, I FEEEEL like we are. We are together now, luv. We’re no longer alone. I feel like we’ve been married for years.”

I loved the Beatles and certainly being serenaded by their songs was very seductive. But, I was feeling smothered. Part of me, the part that was short on cash, feeling really lonely during the coldest time of the year, wanted that intimacy. But, I knew it was fake.

He played soccer once a week with the boys. He told me that when I viewed his legs in shorts I’d have to keep him on a short leash. At Boot Camp (yeah he came with me: what a sport!) he sauntered into the gym and I have to admit…great legs. He asked if he could leave a pair of shorts at my place so he could change whenever he came over as he was much more comfortable. Why not? I thought and let him do so. Shortly after that he brought a pair of red plaid slippers and asked if I minded if he kept them by my bed.

“Your floors are cold luv. I just want them here to slip on when I come over to visit.”

So his shorts and slippers had a cozy place in my condo. I didn’t really mind. But he became very intense and very upset when I reminded him, gently that I wasn’t his wife. I did this for the third time in an email and I was a little more forceful as I wanted him to just relax a bit and let the relationship take its natural course. We needed time to get to know one another, I wrote among other reminders. He called me that night.

“Adrienne. I love the French in you, but your German side, quite frankly scares me, luv. I laid awake last night worrying about how I’m going to handle all of you.”

“David. I think you’re a great guy, but believe me, we don’t know each other. It’s only been three weeks. You’re killing us by being so needy and demanding.”

I finished my re-decorating and by the time I put the finishing touches on the baseboards, Liverpool_Man and I were in the last stages of breaking up. It was a fun three weeks immersed in his world. I admired his command of the English language. I fondly remember sitting shoulders touching, writing up an ad for a new roommate. I was learning to share as I would delete one of my words and replace it with one of his. By the time we finished it was like reading a Harvard essay.

It was really nice being called someone’s wife.

I realized how much I missed that.

Satisfied with my newly painted room, I sat down with my laptop and logged in to the dating site. I had a feeling something was waiting for me. There was. In my inbox there was a letter from someone named Buddha_Man.

Another foreign country and I didn’t even have to pack my bags.

 

Home Renovation and Online Dating © 2011 Adrienne S Moody. Click Adrienne’s tag for more stories.

* If I Fell 1964, J. Lennon/P. McCartney, Parlophone, EMI Studos, London

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3 Responses to “Home Renovation and Online Dating”
  1. gaboo says:

    Just as we parted I pulled one of those multi-screwdriver sets from my pocket.

    “Can you show me how to work this thing? I’ve tried and tried, and even looked it up on the internet. I decided to bring it and ask any man I run into if he can show me.”

    hahahaha

  2. Adrienne says:

    A good friend called this tactic of mine: resourceful. You do what you gotta do. A barista finally showed me how to extract the flat blade that I needed. I have no pride when it comes to something like this. Thanks for reading.

    :-)

    A

  3. gaboo says:

    Yes, to each their expertise. I would have no idea how to conduct myself at a black tie affair.

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