Is This The Part Where I Start Dating Again?

I’ve always been a fan of little glances. Whether they be across a crowded room, coffee shop or as you pass on the street, there’s just something intoxicating about those fleeting moments of connection. Most of the time they amount to nothing. Even more often they turn out to be accidental, which I tend to understand just a moment too late. I’ve already awkwardly smiled at her and she’s already turned her attention back to her phone, where she is no doubt texting her boyfriend who is much, much better at life than I am. Or worse, she sees the smile and does her best to ignore me. When this happens all I can really do is hope no one else saw and speed up my walk as I hurry to find the nearest dark hole to crawl into.

But then there’s those moments of sheer pleasure and joy. And probable nausea. You lock eyes, possibly more than once, give a tentative half smile (or less; a turned up corner of the mouth perhaps) and look away again, careful not to give too much right away. You look again, shiver in a way that you hope isn’t physically noticeable and turn your attention back to your coffee.

Then…well, then…

This is the part I’m much less sure about. I know I’m supposed to actually go and, you know, interact. But contrary to popular conjecture of those who only know me from situations where I can be the jester, I’m far from a social butterfly. It would be great if I could figure out why this is the case. Perhaps someday, years from now, I’ll be sitting in a shrink’s office and something from my past will come rushing back to my mind and it’ll all make sense. Until then I’ll just do the best with what I’ve got. It isn’t much, but it’s me.

So eye contact is made. Smiles are exchanged. Next comes conversation. But how the hell does that happen? Spontaneous conversation seems like something out of a sci-if novel I have no business reading. It’s usually uncomfortable at first, a little off-putting if done incorrectly. But once you jump off that cliff you either have to fall or learn to fly. And depending on the situation both can be equally attractive. I usually abstain completely and walk away.

Notice that I never mentioned that was an option? Yeah. I did that on purpose. Let me walk away. I have things to distract me from a relationship. I need to be alone for a while. I want to be alone for a while. I want to sit at computer and make up reasons why I should walk away from possibility. You go and find The One. I’ll be here making excuses. When I’m ready I promise you’ll be first to know.

Ok. I’m ready. (Well, not really…but learning to fly sounds like a better option than falling.)

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