Monday, August 11, 2008

My Imaginary Boyfriend Married Someone Else

You know it’s bad when your imaginary boyfriend marries someone else. The actual person wasn’t a figment of my imagination, but the vision of the two of us as soul mates was all mine. I met him at a new-agey retreat center in New York. He was taking a class called “opening your heart” and who wouldn’t immediately fall for a straight man who traveled all the way from Kansas to open his heart? I initially approached him to find out what time it was—he had on a nice watch so I instantly ascertained that he was financially solvent on top of his unique focus on a part of his body not covered by his pants.

I think it is fair to say that initially he had some interest in me, too. He proposed that he skip out on part of the evening workshop and meet me for coffee. We talked about our recent divorces, how he planned to volunteer for Planned Parenthood, an organization I’d worked for for many years (a straight man working for choice and opening his heart—unprecedented!) and he was into tennis, hiking and biking and thus managing to avoid the typical post-40 midline crisis. He even walked me back to my dorm-style accommodations after we talked, promising me that his work brought him to the New York/New Jersey area at least once a month. We e-mailed almost daily for a few weeks and talked on the phone but the promised trips East never did happen. Eventually I sent an e-mail that went unanswered and I let it go—though my ever sneaky subconscious must have figured that he had simply changed personal e-mails as we all do when Comcast’s prices make Verizon look like robber barrons or vice versa.

I suppose I was inspired by a few bad dates in a row (see other blog posts for details) to try e-mailing again—this time at the work e-mail. First, I did google him just to see if there was any major reason for the radio-silence—but he had been quoted in the newspaper related to the same job he had been doing two years ago so I sent a totally appropriate note. I didn’t even mention my continued very, completely, totally single status but I suppose that was implicit in e-mailing him at all. Within an hour of e-mailing I had constructed the response I was hoping for—he was taking over his company’s office in New Jersey (or New York or even Philadelphia might have worked), had been meaning to contact me and couldn’t wait to take me to dinner when he came to look for houses in a week or so. And, could I think about some towns that might be convenient and worth considering? Luckily I was able to go to a yoga class to pass some of the time while I waited for a reply. And, considerate man that he is, he put me out of my fantasy quickly with his update. “I got married last December. Lisa is a physician at a local hospital and grew up in New York so we’ll be buying a house there in the not too distant future.” So, he would be spending some time here—with his actual, real life wife. Next time I need to remember to have a truly fantasy boyfriend—because then and only then could I make sure he didn’t marry someone else.


Hey Jud said...


Ah, the one that got away!

Well each experience brings you closer to ... another experience!

Looking forward to more.


KarenM said...

It may sound cliche', but this happens to the best of us. A friend of mine says, "Men are like parking spaces, the best ones are taken and the rest are handicapped." This is a bit negative and rather sexist. So, I like to think that it's just a matter of pulling into the right parking lot at the right time, sometimes you just get lucky! It's there waiting for you; I'm sure of it.
Another very good story!