One of my biggest pet peeves is drivers WHO DON'T LIKE TO USE THEIR INDICATORS! Driving in my car having pleasant thoughts about my trip to the store or meeting up with friends for a cocktail (or a few), a driver not using your indicators can quickly set my mood to a day in purgatory. After all, the car manufacturers did install them for a reason. Unfortunately, technology is not up-to-date with installing a genie or fortune teller in my car to let me know where you are going. I will make sure to crash into you next time if that's your goal.
When I think about the necessity of using your indicators on the road, I wonder about the indicators in our relationships. Do we use indicators as often as we should to show which way we are going with someone?
As I reflect on that question, I chuckle because I'm not sure if the people I was interested used indicators or I just didn't know how to read them. As easy as the car indicators are -- right or left, relationships do not have simple signals that can tell you what the other person is thinking.
Take for example, my college crush. He was a fine ass specimen. There was not a single thing not to like about him. He was intelligent, funny, sexy, deliciously built (yep, I said it and don't try to steal it!). I want to say he was about 6 feet tall, just the right height for this 5’2”. Each time, he would see me, he would tease me and say my name several times letting certain vowels roll on his tongue. "You're from Africa, right?" "No," I would respond, "but my ancestors were." He would adamantly, but flirtatiously argue that I was born in Africa and needed to admit it. He just didn't know that the simple five minutes of conversations with him would be forever etched in my brain as a night in heaven. Yeah...those were college dreams. Don't laugh, you had them, too. My girlfriends would tell me that "he must be into you because he doesn't say much to us. I see the way he looks at you!" They start gassing your head. So, I believed that I had 2 strong indicators that he was interested in me: 1. My friends saw how he acted towards me and 2. We flirted a lot with each other. Was it enough for us to go out with each other: NO! See girls like me don't get the opportunity to go out with guys like him. I should give him a name. “He” and “him” is bothering me right now. So, Jason was not your average young man. He was a leader. He was frat boy. He was in all the college fashion shows with his body glistening under....okay too much reminiscing.
He just wasn't the type to break the norm-- to date an average girl who no one knew on campus.
Our lives would go on. During our senior year, my best friend and I met Roberto. He was something to look at, too! While he shared his emotions of not feeling good enough for girls, we shared with him our own self-esteem issues. In one of our "woe is me" night, he informed me that Jason was into the "long-hair, slender body" type of chicks. "I think he's going out with a Spanish girl now." Later that night, he told me to give up the dream of ever dating Jason. "You are not his type!"
Crushed, I somewhat moved on. I had a lot of things I needed to work on. I was a girl struggling with many emotional and self-esteem issues that stemmed from my childhood which caused me to believe that I wasn't good enough to be anyone's girl. I was curvaceously thick with the fat in all the right places but didn’t feel like the intelligent bombshell that everyone kept reminding me that I was.
Somehow before we graduated, I was able to get Jason's home address and phone number. Since I was a child, I always tried to keep in touch with people I knew. I sent him a card or two for Christmas and his birthday as I did with everyone else on my list. I also wrote him a letter. Don't ask me what I wrote in the letter though. Since we lived in the same area, I saw him once on the bus. I purposely did not sit next to him to let him know that I was chasing him anymore. Since my stop was before his, he yelled from the back of the bus, "Goodbye". In one of my Carrie Bradshaw poses (before Carrie was born though), I looked back, left foot forward, right leg slightly bent, gave smile and whispered good-bye. I didn't see him again.
Shockingly, as I was laying in my bed mourning over the death of the old me, I received a phone call. "Hey, stranger! What's up?" Puzzled, I answered waiting to hear why he was calling me. "You should check out this place on Thursday nights." "Okay," I said still trying to figure out where the conversation was going. He then invited me to church, but not with him. "Okay," I said again. I was kinda freaked out about the church invitation. Did he see me somewhere? Did he have a psychic connection that told him that I needed to find Jesus ASAP? The conversation lasted about 5 minutes. The rest of the night I couldn't sleep. What did that phone call mean? Was he thinking of me? Was he "indicating" to me that he wanted to see more of me?
I didn't go to that place nor did I go to the church he invited me to. They say that if a man is interested in you, then they should come to you. I felt he was meeting me halfway. I mean, I can go to the place or the church. There's no guarantee that he would be there when I went. It bothered me how he wasn't telling me which way to go.
Occasionally, I would think of him, but quickly placed him in the suppress memories part of my brain to avoid reliving the hurt I caused myself when I dream of good things happening to me. Then one day, I met this other guy, Kevin. He met this great guy at a Harvard Business School Conference whose name was Jason. The angels had sung…God is this your message to me that this is my chance to make it work? With the invention of FaceBook, I was able to be his friend. He contacted me and was pleasantly surprised that I found him.
We exchanged numbers and texted each other back and forth. He asked me a lot of questions like what I liked to do, what sports I liked, who are my favorite teams, what I liked to do for fun, etc. After I answered them all, he said, "Great. We would get along perfectly." I wish you could see my face when he said that. Part of me wanted to get on my knees and praise God until I had no voice. The other part was like, "Whatchu talking about, Willis?" What did he mean by that? He told me that when I come to NYC to be sure to look him up. I didn't pass up on that offer.
So I went to NYC, but didn't have my Carrie Bradshaw outfit on (by that time Carrie was born). I was dropped off in the Bronx and had to commute to Park Avenue from there. YOU FIGURE IT OUT! There was no way I was going to wear my bitch-you-better-work heels. Instead, I opted to wear some comfortable lime green Keds with little green froggies, Lucky Brand capri tight-fitting jeans and a tank top. I had lost a few pounds and feeling somewhat sexy. It was a bit cold, so I went to Strawberries (I believe that's the name of the store) to buy a jean cape jacket (which by the way was super cute!).
Anxiously waiting to meet him, I was awed at how he confidently walked down the stairs from his Fortune 500 job. He wore a pink shirt and slacks. Originally, we were supposed to go to lunch, but he stated that he had a meeting at 1pm and would only be able to get coffee. As we walked to find some place to get coffee, he ended up changing his mind and decided to take a stroll with me instead. Finally, we found a bench to sit on. As we flirted with each other like we did in college, we talked about why were not married yet. Both of us stated that we haven't found the right person to settle down with. Given his career and his personality, I found it odd that he wasn't married and had a family. As I asked him what he was looking for, I started to see his request was a bit funny. "I want a girl who’s thick, but not big." He later explained that he wanted someone was between a size 8 and 10. “If she gets pregnant, then when she gets bigger, she doesn’t become too big. I don’t know how I would carry her if she was bigger than me!” We both laughed. I shook my head and told him he was a hot mess, but funny. “Well, if you are so worried about those things, make sure you don’t end up with a girl who’s worried about stretch marks. That type of girl may not want to get pregnant.” “Good looking out!” he smiled.
As I looked at him, I missed him, I missed this….whatever this was.
Before I left, he made sure that I spun around to show him me. “Yeah, you have the body type I’m looking for.”
“Wait til you see me in heels.”
As he gave me a tight hug goodbye, he whispered, “Wear the heels next time!”
Now how many indicators were in this story that he’s digging this chocolate beauty? I counted a few. But I also counted two major bad signals: not taking me to lunch as originally planned and skipping the coffee. It made me wondered if he really did have a 1pm meeting that he had to go to. Although I was happy and left with pleasant memories, in typical female form, I went to process the interaction with my girlfriends and male friend (one of my best friend’s fiancé likes to hear my stories, too!). As Thom pointed out, I wore the wrong outfit to try to impress my long-time crush. I lowered my head in shame knowing that was my first mistake and a bad indicator on my part to show him I was a serious candidate for his affections. Thom was not amused by Jason’s size comment and thought Jason was arrogant. Despite what Thom thought, my girls and I thought that this would not be the last of Jason.
Obsessed with trying to figure out what all the indicators meant, I sent an email to Jason asking him about the possibilities of us. He informed me that I was more like a “sister” to him and nothing more. I reflected on the comment and wondered if checking out your sister was an okay thing to do nowadays. It was a blow to my confidence, but it just left me a bit enraged…like road rage. Why did we always play the flirt game? Why did he ask all those questions only to say, “we were perfect”? Why did he check me out from head to toe? Why? Why? Why?
I’m sorry, but all this could have been avoided had he told me which direction we were going in. As much as I love a good game, I don’t want to play games…well not emotional games. The whole experience put me in place that I didn’t want to be. I was emotionally bruised. I wanted to make Jason feel the way I was feeling, but realized that wouldn’t work. It took three weeks for me to get over everything. Like many of relationship’s lessons, this experience (along with many) taught me one big lesson: ALWAYS DRESS TO IMPRESS no matter how much it will kill you in the end. Of course, there were more lessons to learn. For me, it’s important to have man who is going to appreciate you no matter what you are wearing. I also need a man who can give me a good set of directions with proper indicators of what will happen next. I know that there are some people who want us to guess where we are going because it makes things more “spontaneous” and “exciting”. But the adventure quickly turns into Nightmare on Elm Street when you’re the person who didn’t see the signs or read them properly. Besides, there’s always room for interpretation…especially when you are living on Cloud 9 and think that your dreams are coming true. I’m just saying.
Jason and I are still friends. Although I don’t look at him the same way that I use to, you better believe the next time I go to NYC, I’m definitely wearing my you-wish-you-were-wearing-me outfits! You know how we do!