Posts Tagged gauge

The Game of Phones

Early in my relationship with CK, I was introduced to two of his friends in line at the movies. They were dating each other, and had been CK’s friends for some time. He had a small ensemble of friends compared to my rather sizable pack, so I knew each of them was precious to him. I was nervous to meet them the first time, and following that night, I didn’t quite feel I’d made the cut. I’d seen them twice since then — on the day we took CK’s mother out for mother’s day, but we were in a large group. I couldn’t quite gauge how they felt about me. The other time was to see Battleship, and I had very limited contact with them that night.

When CK asked me if I wanted to go see Prometheus with this pair, I politely obliged. Prometheus wasn’t something I felt necessary to go to the theater to see, as I didn’t go to the movies all that often, but it was something CK was excited to see. To say his friend was excited to see it would be an understatement. To him, this was “the movie of the summer.”

As you know, I’m a Groupon/Living Social fiend. When CK asked if I wanted to go, I asked him to tell his friend to hold off on buying our tickets because I had a Fandango gift certificate I purchased through Living Social. It was commonplace for his friend to purchase our tickets as well as his own, and while this gesture is very nice and greatly appreciated, it offered the two of us little advantage. Once, we had to search the theater to find out who had them at “will call.” Another night, we were at dinner and had to ask for our entrees to be packaged up so we could make the movie in time. Had the tickets not been pre-purchased, we could have simply apologized for our lack of planning and told the happy couple to enjoy the movie without us.

I attempted to use the gift certificate, but it expired. I wasn’t about to ask his friend to purchase our tickets at this point after already telling him not to. I took care of it myself. All of this transpired over text, and when the purchase was finalized, I told CK I got our tickets.

The day of the movie, we arrived at his friends’ apartment slightly behind schedule. It’s rare CK and I can get anywhere on time. I learned early on, as I was told by CK’s friends, “There is normal time, there is Cuban Standard Time and there is [CK] Standard Time.” As a result, CK’s friend was already in a less than chipper mood. We quickly flagged down a cab to the theater to try to get there in time to get decent seats. As soon as we entered the theater, I made a beeline to the ticket kiosk. I swiped my card and the machine dispensed two tickets. At this point, CK’s friend spoke up and said, “Wait. You didn’t get our tickets?!” I explained to him how I told CK to tell him to hold off on purchasing our tickets, not all the tickets. He was fuming. I told him to see if it was sold out, and indeed it was. I was mortified. I know I did nothing wrong, and it was a miscommunication, however, I felt horrible. I immediately told his friend to take our tickets. We would go see something else. He wanted none of it. He got into a tizzy and said they wouldn’t get good seats at this point anyway because we were so late. I insisted he take out tickets, and he said no and stormed off.

At that point, my guilt was lifted. As I said, I did nothing wrong, but for him to respond to me in that way after an honest mistake on all our parts was totally uncalled for. At this point, it was safe to say his opinion of me was no longer in limbo; it was in the sh*tter. As a result, I was p*ssed! Why was he holding this against me? CK was the one who told him to hold off. After speaking to CK, he didn’t expect me to have all four tickets. He was under the same assumption I was about our two tickets. I was already walking on egg shells around this friend, but now I didn’t know how to act around him. We both agreed, from then on out, we would always take care of our own tickets and no one else’s.

CK and I found two seats and watched the movie with ample time to get popcorn and soda from good seats. We both enjoyed the movie, but I left with a bad taste in my mouth from the whole experience. I didn’t understand why all the hostility was being directed at me. Yes, I was a part of it, but I certainly wasn’t the entire problem. With that, I let it go. There was no use in me harping on it. It happened, I apologized, and it was time to move on.

After the movie, we went back to CK’s apartment. I was still a little stressed and still feeling a little fat, so I asked CK if he minded if I went for a quick run. He was cool with it, so off I went for fifteen minutes. When I returned, we showered and attempted to find a place for dinner.

We managed to find a place very close to his apartment. We’d eyed Taboon every time we passed, so we decided to finally give it a shot. The food was excellent, the service was superb, and the company was impeccable. It was the perfect way to end a weekend. I couldn’t think of a better place to finish my Sunday night than a romantic dinner with my man close to “home.” We shared a great meal and great conversation throughout dinner, and when it was over, we walked back to his apartment.

As our lives were blending, I was still finding pitfalls, however, I feel I was navigating them pretty damn well. The movie incident could have gone much smoother, but mistakes happen and life goes on. In the end, it was a movie, but as I would learn later, it was so much more…

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Not Every Day is Eventful

After I learned my lesson with cheap haircuts and learned how much more I can spend on top of the original cost to have them fixed, I decided to pay more attention to who was cutting my hair.

The opportunity arose for me to purchase a Living Social for the New York Shaving Company for a haircut, a shave and free shaving cream for $36. I jumped at it because I was about due for a cut. My hair had grown in considerably since Smiles and I had the barber fix it in Brooklyn. The location of this establishment was also an added bonus — Not far from Smiles’ apartment.

I decided to get a new cut before New Year’s Eve, so I made an appointment for Wednesday night following work. I figured I would get cleaned up and then visit Smiles before heading home for the night. We’d texted during the day and I told him of my plan to get a cut and shave and told him I would try to swing by after since I was in the neighborhood.

I have to say, I was really impressed with the place and they did a great job. I was quite uneasy with the cut immediately following because it was so short. It was shorter than the last time, which was a bit of a change for me to get used to. Now I was going even further. It also made me realize the chill outside since I was far less insulated from the bitter cold that night.

As I walked through the streets of SoHo carrying a side table in a large box I’d ordered and shipped to work, I pulled out my cellphone and called Smiles to see if he was home. My hand and face froze in the bitter cold as we I waited for the phone to ring, but I got no answer. After two short rings, it went to voicemail. I knew he’d “sidebarred” me.

However, I was upset for not, because a minute later, he called me back. He apologized for hitting the wrong button when picking up the phone. He was trying to run around to get ready because he was meeting a friend for drinks. I tried to see if he’d be home for another five minutes, even if all I got to do was say hi and give him a kiss, but alas, he was already running late. I was disappointed I wouldn’t get to see him. He did promise to call me later that night before going to bed.

I course corrected for the PATH and made my way back to Hoboken, but not before texting a few other friends to see if they’d meet me for dinner at the Village Pourhouse in Hoboken. I had a Groupon I needed to use up, and it was late. I didn’t want to go home and cook dinner. I also didn’t want to be alone. After not getting to see Smiles, I felt a little lonely.

I quickly stopped home and dropped off the table. I said hello and goodbye to my roommates and made my way to the Pourhouse. D and K decided to come meet me for dinner. It was nice to see them and catch up. I hadn’t seen them in some time.

After dinner, I went home and watched TV. The time came for me to go to bed, but it would be without a phone call from Smiles.

I went to work the next day and learned Smiles was attending the opera that morning from his Facebook status. Considering he took me to the opera a few weeks earlier, I was curious who he was there with. I started to become suspicious, but I had no grounds.

Then I felt quite guilty when he called me during intermission to see if I was available to step away from “work” to grab lunch. I was thrilled. He never did this sort of unplanned thing. I told him it wouldn’t be an issue at all, and we picked a place to meet. It looked like my prayers of him finally asking me on a date were answered.

I decided to take him to Kyo Chon. I’d gone there before on a friendly lunch with a guy I’d met on Grindr and rather enjoyed it. It wasn’t that great this time around. I could tell Smiles wasn’t all that happy with it either. His wings were a little hotter than he could handle. He started sweating in front of me.

After we finished out lunch, Smiles was on the lookout for ice cream. He pulled out his phone to search for it. We walked to a Baskin Robins, but he wasn’t thrilled with the idea. I told him about the Ben & Jerry’s in Macy’s Herald Square, and he was much more content with the idea of that as long as time allowed for me to continue to be away from work.

I took him on a mini tour of Macy’s after we got ice cream to scope out some of the areas. I’d always liked the 1½ floor there. It’s the “designer” floor, and the people there have always taken great care of me, acting almost as a personal shopper. He was turning his nose up at the commercialism of it as if they weren’t “real” designers. I don’t buy all my clothes there, but to me, all I needed was the Ralph Lauren section to keep me happy.

Smiles was talking about his need to revisit his energy specialist, but he was debating whether to go home and go later because he needed a nap. He called to see the hours and learned he’d have to kill an hour somewhere or come back up to midtown later. I invited him to come up to my office to kill time. I wanted to show him our penthouse in the shadow of the Empire State Building, but he had decided on the nap.

I said goodbye to him and he hopped on the subway south.

That night I went out with friends. I thought about Smiles while at the bar and decided to text him, but got no response. I was being a good wingman to a friend that night, so I concentrated my efforts on that.

He texted me back in the am to tell me he stayed in for the night studying. He planned to go shopping for the day, and I didn’t hear from him for the rest of the day. I called him because I wanted to discuss our plans for New Years, but I got no answer. We messaged each other on Facebook briefly that night to tell me he was going out with a friend. I still didn’t know quite what we were going to be doing to close 2011. I didn’t need to know for any reason, but I was curious what was in the plans.

This was another night he’d be going out with his friends and I mine. I started to think about that. He’d never invited me out for his boys’ night out. He never asked about my nights out in Hoboken with my friends. If we were in a relationship, we’d be meeting each other’s friends at this point, but that wasn’t the case. It seems we weren’t in a relationship at all. All the pieces were coming together, but I wouldn’t get the final piece until New Year’s Eve. That would be my gauge on how to proceed. It appeared my timeline had a new distinct end. Or would it be a beginning?

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