It would really seem that I have a thing for men from cities that have had atomic bombs dropped on them, and usually my heart ends up worse for wear, feeling like the rubble and decrepit shells of remaining buildings. I’ve written about Hiroshima Boy here and here, and it was a long time before I even felt ready to jump back into the dating game again after him (even now I still have the occasional pang and mini meltdown).
Last December, I was delighted to receive a message from a gorgeous guy, asking to meet up. He was really hot, and I was really excited. We LINED each other for many days before arranging to meet up. I made sure I looked my best, although that night the weather decided not to be my friend and I ended up sodden, looking like I’d been dragged through a hedge backwards, and with completely wet feet – not a good start. He was a little bit late, and I was shivering with cold, but when I saw him I decided it was all worth it – he really was drop dead gorgeous. Taller than me (which is not that common), slim, and super cute. We picked an izakaya and hit it off. Let me tell you, I was VERY tired by the end of the date – I worked hard for my supper that night… in my limited conversational Japanese. He complimented my gold nails (Barry M gold foil darlings), saying they were super pretty, and when I went to the ladies’ room toward the end of the evening, he very classily paid while I was gone. We chatted and walked back to the station, I thanked him and said goodbye. Later, I messaged him to thank him for a lovely time.
“I was really surprised when I met you,” was the reply.
“Why?” Uh oh, I thought.
“Because you’re so much more beautiful than your profile photo. So I was surprised.”
“Ha ha ha, thank you! You’re pretty cute too so it’s all good.”
Okay I’m not great at flirting, don’t judge me! But anyway, I’d say as first dates go, it went really well. We kept in touch regularly over the winter holidays, and sent messages and photos of our respective holidays back and forth. He even sent photos of his beloved dog, and a video of a ferry trip he took with his family. We met again in January, and in keeping with Japanese tradition I gave him a little souvenir from my trip. Things were going swimmingly and I couldn’t have been happier.
Then around spring break he took ages to reply to one of my messages.
“I’m on holiday in Vietnam,” he said. Fair enough.
A few days later I asked him if he was back and how it was.
“I had a great time with my girlfriend!”
“Oh how lov-” Wait. What? Girlfriend??
I was gobsmacked. Had I been played? I didn’t really know what to do, but I gave myself a few days, to not be that girl, the one who freaks out and gets labelled as crazy by the guy, but I knew that I had to say something about it. Perhaps I broke all of the rules of dating and relationships, and I’m sure many of you are chucking things at your screens, and banging your heads against the wall wondering how I could be so silly and do things so wrong, but I knew that I couldn’t just keep seeing him as a friend, knowing he had a girlfriend, and pretend it didn’t affect me at all. I have neither the time, the energy, nor the inclination for playing games. After he claimed that his intention was friendship from the start, I did, serenely, bring to his attention that his profile listed him as single, and that I never reply to guys who message me if their status is “It’s complicated” or “In a relationship.” My profile, along with what I’m looking for, is very specific and very clear.
He didn’t reply after that, perhaps because he knows he’s in the wrong. I was a little shaken up when this went down, but I do feel a strange sense of empowerment – I did after all, say my piece. More often than not I’m left fuming with torrents of things left unsaid, but in this case, a definite sense of calm washed over me – I got my closure. Sayonara Mr Nagasaki.
P.S. – Dearest readers, I would love to know if you’ve ever been in a situation like this before. Did I obsess and misinterpret things? Why are men such strange creatures? Do I need some Matthew Hussey in my life? Oh my, my.