Thursday, January 27, 2005

Not quite, but almost

Maybe it was obvious to everyone but me, but asking Jake out was fine. He even said he was going to ask me out but that I beat him to the punch. He seemed to think I wouldn’t believe him, but I assured him that I did. We met for dinner in his neighborhood (I was there for a late meeting) and after, with no discussion at all, we went to his place. Now, I’d assumed that this is what would happen. I wanted to see his place and I figured he’d give me a ride home, so we had to go that way anyway. But when it was time to go, he didn’t say, “Do you want to see my place?” or “Can I give you a ride home?” He just started walking that direction! I did say, “So, are we going to your house?” And he said, “Yes, unless you want to go to Borders or something.”

He steered me to his place, which was quite close. The apartment was nice and one of his two cats greeted me immediately. Even though he’s lived there for a year, the place was kind of empty. There was a small sofa, coffee table, computer desk, TV and stereo, and dining table (never used, Jake said), but the living room felt very big and empty. There was nothing on the walls at all. Still, it was a nice place, just needs a little thought. It felt like a temporary accommodation—not very homey. He had three guitar cases leaning against the wall too.

We hung out and listened to music, played with the cats, and well, you know. It was fun, but the overstuffed back cushions of the couch kept trying to push me off the couch. And the cats took turns threatening to push my glasses from the coffee table to the floor (one finally did it). Around 10 we left. We stayed together at my place until around midnight. After he left, I fell promptly to sleep.

What Jake doesn’t know, and what I don’t plan to tell him is that we are waiting at least eight dates for sex. Maybe we will wait longer. I have to say, that, while sex is certainly on my mind, it wouldn’t be that hard to resist (difficult, not impossible). What is hard is not having sleepovers. I think that having sleepovers at this point could as easily lead to a false sense of intimacy as having sex. So, we’re not doing that, and we’re not talking about sex, but it’s there, looming, like everything in this whole start-up phase.

Remember to have fun! There is time for serious later. (Kelly’s advice). It feels like I have to deal with serious now, but I don’t if I just show a little restraint. He is good about this, making it easy for me. He is more interested in making things work out over the long term (he even said it! Who says that after four dates? God love him.). He knows that not rushing is the way to do that. If this is going to work out, if we are going to be together, then there is plenty of time and no need to fit everything in as soon as possible. As I figured out yesterday, part of why I rush things is to get reassurance. But there’s no reassurance for something that doesn’t exist yet. And, the other stuff, him liking me, well, I’d have to be a fool not to recognize that he does, and quite a bit. Now, all I have to do is make sure I don’t run in the other direction as fast as I can from the sheer possible-ness of it all. Oh, and we have plans for Saturday night. He asked me.

And, I’m keeping my Sunday dates, on a purely friendship basis. I’m not going to hate myself for this—I’m not make any false promises or anything like that, so it’s just fine. Jake may assume we’re going steady, but before that is a for real thing, I can do this with impunity.

I am really grateful to be dating someone who is not crazy, not an alcoholic, not on anti-depressants, and not over 50. It’s almost a bonus that he seems to want the same things that I do, and that he is funny, smart, and sweet. It’s almost too good to be true.

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