Dating the Broke Boy
Last week, I was having dinner with a work colleague, and our waiter – who was unbelievably cute and charming – was hitting on me. My colleague was egging me on to give him my number, and when I told him that I really didn’t want to date a waiter, he accused me of being a snob and an elitist.
So naturally, I felt the need to defend myself from his surly accusations. I started to explain that the waiters in LA are mostly all good looking, as the majority of them are struggling actors waiting for their ‘lucky break’; and if all I wanted was cute and hot, then I would be leaving my digits along with my tip at half of the eating establishments that I frequent.
As he shrugged his shoulders and said “Sooo cute and hot has to be better than NOTHING, and right now you have… NOTHING!” “Why not just enjoy what the universe is pointing in your direction, I mean, why not just date what is in front of you now?” I thought for a second, hesitating as I searched my mind for a way to explain to him why that didn’t work for me, and in an effort to clear up the snobby and elitist impression he had of me, I decided to tell him the story of – Harrison.
Harrison – the Broke Boy …
A few years ago, I kept running into this tall, handsome, athletically built man as we both walked our dogs around the same time each morning and night. It was hard to miss him and his scraggily dog, as each time we got close, his mangy mutt tried to kill my sweet little dog, Canoli.
Whenever our paths would cross, his dog would fiercely tug at his leash any time we got within 30 feet of them. Then, with his canine-teeth tightly clenched, he would hiss a loud warning hiss, until we were within chomping range, and the dog would bark ferociously and try to bite off bits of Canoli, as I desperately tried to pull Canoli the other direction – or carry him – in order to avoid a tragedy from occurring.
So, when I was picking up take-out one night, and when a handsome man at the bar gave me a wave, I was shocked as I got closer to discover that the wave had come from – the canine killer’s owner. He was definitely an attractive man, and as I sat beside him waiting for my order to arrive, our conversation went beyond our normal ‘how to keep our dogs from killing each other’ conversation. I found out that he was well educated, a Harvard Grad, and had a medical degree. His father was a famous physician who worked solely with Olympic athletes. There was a definite attraction between us, and by the time my food had arrived, he had my number.
He called the next day to see if I wanted to get together with him, and I decided that maybe an early happy hour at one of my favorite places at the time – The Hamburger Hamlet – would be an easy location to meet. Plus, happy hour meant that I would not be stuck with him the entire night if the date wasn’t going well. He thought the plan was great and I met him there two nights later.
The date went extremely well. We had an intellectual connection, a physical connection, we were playful together – the energy between us was magical. He told me that he had decided against becoming a doctor, and had a series of inventions and projects he was trying to get off the ground. I silently wondered who would go to medical school and decide not to practice medicine, but whatever – he was smart and hot!
He offered to drive me home – as I had taken a cab in anticipation of indulging in some happy hour libations – and even though I normally wouldn’t accept a ride with a virtual stranger, I made an exception as, I was already smitten. He had not valeted his car, which I found a bit odd as it was only $5 to valet during Happy Hour, and instead we walked to his car.
‘Maybe it was a fancy car that he didn’t want the valet to ding’ I thought to myself as we walked the two blocks to his car – hand in hand – me barely able to wait for my first kiss. As we approached a late model Ford Explorer – one that looked like it had been torched in an accident yet somehow was still drivable – I was shocked when he stopped at it. He then very chivalrously went and opened the passenger door for me to enter. However, even though he opened the door for me, he still had to crawl in first, as that was the only way to access the drivers’ side of the car, as the driver’s door lock was also broken.
I was now really perplexed. A well-educated man, with a wealthy dad, who was driving a ‘beyond a beater’ of a car – something didn’t fit right in my mind. But I was attracted, intrigued, and the good-night kiss was magical.
Over the next month, I got to know Harrison. He was eccentric and brilliant, but at 38 he was still chasing his tail and he had finally come clean with me that his father gave him a monthly allowance that he lived off of. (Ewe!) The allowance paid his rent, and money for food, but it just covered the basics.
So, we spent most of the time at my place (as he lived, as it turned out, in a small studio apartment). Let’s just say my cooking skills increased dramatically that month, I caught up on all of my movies I had Tivo’d, and hiking became our new ‘shared activity’. I had accepted the fact that I was dating a broke boy, but at least he embodied a hot and sexy kind of a broke boy.
After about 4 weeks of playing house, I was getting cabin fever and really wanted a night out, and as he had just received his monthly allowance he said that he, too, was excited to go out, and he wanted to treat me to dinner at his favorite restaurant. As such, I got glammed up, excited for an evening out.
As we pulled up to Molly Malone’s Irish Pub – me in a cocktail dress and high heels – I wondered why the hell he hadn’t mentioned to me that we were going to a casual pub when he saw how I was dressed? Regardless, I didn’t make a fuss, even when we looked at the menu and he said that he had enough money for us to either each get a burger and fries, or we could split a burger and he could have a beer and I could get a wine. Splitting a burger – past the age of 16 errrr – seemed a bit lame, but I decided that I really needed alcohol or I wasn’t going to make it through the date.
Okay, so I am definitely not a ‘gimme gimme’ kind of girl. But that night, when I went home I started to mentally calculate how much I had spent the past month on extra groceries, and how much I had splurged on paying for New Release movies from On Demand, I started to get a little pissed and annoyed as the scales of fairness were definitely tipping in his favor. Regardless, I decided to continue to see him – my broke boy – as I did like him, and wished that one of his ‘big projects’ might take off as he had hoped. But this night had left me thinking and, whether I realized it or not, I was starting to keep a list in my head of ‘reasons to flee’ this broke boy kind of a list.
The next thing that made the ‘reasons to flee list’ was the night that he came over – on the late side – as he said he had been feeling sick all day. As he cuddled in next to me, he said some soup might make him feel better, and could I order him in some Won Ton Soup? I was a little irritated by his request, especially after he declined the Campbell’s Chicken and Rice Soup I had on hand, but I started to call my favorite Chinese Food Take Out place. As he heard me on the phone he said, “No, no, I don’t want it from there, I want it from Xian.”
All I could think was ‘Okay you broke fucker, you come over ‘sick’ wanting Won Ton Soup, and now my dive bar Chinese Food place isn’t good enough for your broke boy ass? You want me to spring for Xian from Beverly Fucking Hills?’ and I gave him a nasty look and said “Too late, it’s on it way.” (Seriously, WTF!)
His broke boy ass had now been escalated to the critical level on my ‘reasons to flee SHIT list’ and I felt incredibly taken advantage of at that moment.
A few days later, we had plans to watch the Lakers Game together. Now don’t get too excited, we weren’t watching it at the Staples Center, or even in a bar, but at my house AGAIN, with me picking up food on my way home from work so broke boy could enjoy his favorite snacks and beer during the game. I got everything ready, and before I knew it the game had started. I called to see where he was, texted, and there was no response.
By the time the game was over, I was so upset wondering where the fuck he was, that I had drank about two thirds of a bottle of Cabernet by myself. As the game ended, the phone rang, and Harrison was on his way over. He had decided, last minute he professed, to watch the game with a friend. You know, I wouldn’t have cared if he had wanted to watch it with his friend, but to make plans with me and to have so little respect for me to not even call and cancel, or to have done the right thing and made plans to see his friend another time, put the final nail in the coffin on my ‘reasons to flee’ list.
By the time the doorbell rang, Harrison didn’t know it but this broke boy was–DONE!!
As he entered, I had a go at him, and hurled repressed and hurt feelings from the past 8 week of dating as to why this little song and dance was ending: “You dissed me, you disrespected my time.” “You disrespected me by not calling; I could have made my own plans!” “You fucked up!”
Then the soup thing came up, and the split hamburger thing came up, and the amount of money I had spent came up, and then for my ‘piece de resistance’ I said:
“You know, Harrison, I don’t know what we were even thinking. Our dogs can’t be in the same room together without your mangy mutt trying to kill my precious, sweet, and innocent little pure bread doggie! And guess what, he wouldn’t want to kill Canoli if his testosterone filled testicles weren’t dangling and flailing about. You are an irresponsible dog owner for not neutering your dog – or were you planning to breed that mutt?”
Damn, I went for the jugular – I was horrible, I felt ashamed of myself after he left. I tried to emasculate him and his dog in one fell swoop. I was like a volcano that had been building up for thousands of years and finally blew. I had officially annihilated Harrison’s Broke Boy butt!
And of course, that was the last I saw of Harrison, and Canoli and I started to walk in a new direction to avoid him. I realized at this point that I was no longer dating surfer boys, broke boys, or super-hot boys just because they were super-hot boys;I was only dating men that were really potential partners who fit in with my life. I needed a man who had a direction, a purpose, and a solid plan. I came to the realization that I worked too hard to be with someone who didn’t have their shit together.
Now….Back to my dinner with my colleague….
After I finished my long winded diatribe to alter my colleague elitist’s summarization of my character, he simply stated that he ‘Got it.’ I am not sure if really got it, or if he just never wanted an explanation of any kind from me ever again.
And the moral of this Broke Boy story is….
- Only date men who have their shit together mentally and emotionally, and who are financially headed in an upward direction; otherwise, you will get stuck in their shit with them and unable to move forward in your own life.
- While I don’t judge people on what they do for a living, our time on this planet is short, and sometimes it sucks to realize that what you need in for your life might not always make you politically correct; but if you don’t honor your needs first, then you are really dishonoring yourself.
- And as my friend told me at the time, okay Janell …NO more, Tom, Dicks or Harry’s for you! Amen! (Double inside joke here for some of my friends out there!)
BELOW IS THE AUDIO LINK – POD CAST FOR YOUR LISTENING PLEASURE lol