Monday, April 1, 2013

Behold the (non)power of a ginger

I went out on a coffee date with a ginger yesterday.  His pictures were cute, but he wasn't quite as cute in reality.  Ginger was 32, some sort of consultant on boring things, and made a joke that his DJ name was "Red Velvet".  Not a DJ, not a real nickname, but it was the one time he made me genuinely laugh!  He struck me as an overgrown frat boy, no joke.  When I asked about what he liked to do when he wasn't working he responded, "Rugby, video games, and drinking."  Ho hum.  Seriously?  That's now an actual listworthy hobby?  The drinking thing came up multiple times in the hour to hour and a half we hung out. 

He seemed to want to hang out more, as he suggested (ding ding ding!) getting a drink post-coffee, and I demurred, but said we could walk around Old Town a bit. It was dreary outside, misting rain and cool, but not terrible.  We meandered for a bit, and after we made a circle back to where we'd started he again asked about getting a drink.  I told him I had to get to the gym before it closed, which was mostly true. 

Blah.  No love connection there! I can't get past the vision of that red chest hair flowering out of the top of his shirt.  Shudder.

Now, Angry Ex was a secret Ginger, meaning he had all the freckling and an auburn tint to his hair, and burned very easily in the sun.  So I can love a ginger in general, but this one just didn't strike my fancy.  I honestly just don't have interest in drinking very often, and between the rugby drinking parties, the pub crawls, and all the other miscellaneous references he made, I knew our desired activities weren't going to mesh so well.  Plus, conversation was a bit more challenging, and felt like work. 

In the last couple of days I also got a message from another guy who was WAY out of my comfort zone appearance wise.  Beautiful, striking gray eyes, overall very good looking as a human being.  But?  But.  He's a body piercer/jewelry designer, and is very into the tattoo and piercing lifestyle.  Very.  As in facial piercings and facial tattoos.

His pictures are startling.  Truly.  Upon first glance his appearance kind of scared me, if I'm being honest.  I don't understand it. 

He messaged me and so I read his profile.  He actually seemed really nice.  We exchanged a few messages, and I didn't really think much of it.  He lives about 45 minutes away in Maryland, and doesn't have a car at this point.  He just moved out here from Oregon in December.  So every sign in the universe points to no.

Somehow, though, we ended up chatting for a long time yesterday.  A long time.  As in texting and IMing for about 4 hours straight.  We exchanged pictures of our pets, and he sent me pictures of some of the jewelry he makes.  Holy hell, the jewelry is awesome.  I would totally buy his work.  It was mostly just regular earrings, and some rings, but he also had some jewelry made for specific, less-traditional ear piercings.  Not going to lie, the jewelry was so cool it made me consider again having one of those piercings done!  It's still in my safe zone (the ear!).

Nonetheless, all I can think while talking to him is how I don't know how to process his appearance.  FACIAL TATTOOS.  Multiple facial tattoos. Facial piercings, and this is beyond just the nose piercing, which he does have.  These are not run of the mill things.  These are things that would give me real pause if I encountered them in the real world.  But he's so damn nice! He gave me some great music recommendations.  We talked about The Walking Dead and families and animals and childhood memories and random trivia type questions. 

One thing I've learned about online dating is that it really tests your values.  I pride myself on being a pretty accepting person.  I try very hard to not be judgmental. I like to think I look beyond the surface to the real person.  But damned if I don't feel like a real asshole right now.  I just think...

how could I ever bring him to a work party?  or introduce him to my family?  or even my friends? 

This is one of those times again where I wish I could meld all the good traits of each person I've encountered into the perfect man.  Seriously, this guy can cook, he can make gorgeous, interesting jewelry, he's kind and funny and well spoken and intelligent and clever.  But all of those things are locked inside a body that is not traditionally decorated.  That would scare many people on the streets.  That would make my friends and family take one look and say WHAT THE EFF???

I feel pretty conflicted about it.  I like talking to him.  He's the most engaging, interesting person I've talked to in awhile.  He seems completely sincere.  Honestly, though?  I am afraid to keep talking to him.  I'm afraid that I will keep liking him more, and feeling more attached to him.  And then I'm afraid to meet him.  I'm afraid that it will expose me for the shallow person I secretly am, and I'm afraid that it will be upsetting in some fashion, and that I will then have to display all of these awful traits when I try to unravel myself from contact with him because I'm not a good enough person to handle it all.

Who knew online dating could afford one such self-evaluation and unsolicited personal insight?

Maybe I should just chill out until May when I'm supposed to visit my backup plan.  But that is a whole other post to freak out about.  :-)  How does one evaluate the possibility of romantically hooking up with someone they've known in some context since their senior year of high school, whom they've considered in this capacity before, but because the timing was never right, it was never tested?  The idea of even kissing him freaks me out!  Like I said, another story for another day.

In the meantime, I'm here, sitting quietly in between mismatched Gingers and disarmingly sweet, insanely tattooed & pierced men and other assorted minor players.  It only takes one.  So where is mine?



    Okay, now that that childish statement is out of the way.... I think if you're uncomfortable with it, then it is what it is. I mean it sucks because otherwise you would probably date him. Does he see it more as an artistic expression, or collection? Personally, I wouldn't have an issue with it, but I also have a few large piece tattoos. However, with that being said I'm very critical of other tattooed people, like if it was a stint (read Chinese letters, butterflies, tribals, AKA douche tattoos) I would waver, or not date them. Poor life decisions, goodbye!

    Also, I live in California, the state of crazy weird hippie expression shit. So, its not as big as a thing as I imagine it would be on the East coast.

    As for the ginger, Red Velvet is the best thing I've heard today. I think I'm going to start saying that to gingers for fun now.

    1. Believe me, the thought crossed my mind. :o

      It's definitely an artistic expression to him, and clearly has meaning, which makes it better on some level. I'm just so not used to the ear gauges PLUS the multiple facial piercings (three in his nose alone, plus odd ones at his temples, etc.), PLUS facial tattoos PLUS two sleeves and tattooed hands, plus god knows what else! It's a LOT to process.

      Red Velvet. So disturbing/hilarious.

  2. this is a toughie. If it were like a sleeve tat that would be a little different but facial tattoos and multiple piercings... i don't know. I'm also a little surprised because it seems like guys like that like girls who are also into that kind of thing - maybe he was and it wasn't working out for him so here you are! maybe go out once and see how jarring it is in person? its always something, huh?

    1. Yeah, I expect I will probably meet him at some point if we keep talking. Why not, right? We'll see.

      It really IS always something!

  3. If you can move beyond your aversion to his appearance, there's still one more obstacle... Do you like personal attention? Because any time you're in public with him, people will take a second look. Right or wrong of them, it will happen. If you're someone who would rather go unnoticed in a crowd then you might not mesh as a couple. IMHO. But, I could definitely be wrong. i'm interested to see other people's opinions on this.

    1. This is a very, very good point. I definitely do not like getting a lot of attention as a general rule. We'll see, I'm still trying to evaluate if he's even a good fit. Convos the last couple of nights have gone a bit morose and woe is me on his side, and I'm not looking for another project or someone who needs to be saved. Been there, done that!

  4. This post really got me thinking. I would be torn, too. I think meeting in person is the only way to find out. As for the high school man.....I am excited to hear more about this. I had a situation like this pop up a few years ago and the making out was worth the wait......

    1. Yes, I've decided I will go ahead and meet him if we keep talking and it goes okay.

      As far as the high school guy, I will admit that my initial instinct about the idea at kissing him right now is :o NO WAY!, but that's possibly just from years of it not being the right time or place, LOL. We'll see.

  5. Let's start off by saying I secretly would totally date a fully tattooed out dude just for the sake of not being the most inked person in the relationship for once. Would he be a keeper with all that going on? Who knows. But I get the hesitation. My parents would spazz for sure.

    I've got a decent amount of piercings and tattoos but it all manages to be pretty subtle. Nose piercings wouldn't freak me out as much as the one's on the temple? I'd have to see it to know how I'd react. Same goes for the face tattoos.

    I say minimum meet with him and see how it makes you feel when you're actually WITH him. Amanda said it right, it's going to get some extra attention and if you're pretty straight laced people are going to have a WTF moment and try and figure out what you see in each other. Sad and stereotypical but true.

    1. Ha, good point! Yes, most people in my life would definitely judge and wonder, not to mention the world at large. I wish I didn't care, but I guess I do!

  6. I know how you feel. My friends would be ok and my family would be ok presuming he has a job and is stable (which is sounds like he is) but would I be nervous bringing him to say our staff Christmas party for work? I work in the corporate world and the reality is that it would be viewed as a negative thing. Sad but it's the reality.