With my back to Rob and deep in conversation with Scott it did occur to me that I was being rude. After all, I approached him with the Cheek’d card and my friend was forced to compensate for my bad manners by making small with Rob.
I turned back around and joined their conversation.
“I’d like to take you out tomorrow night,” said Rob.
“Um, OK,” I said, kind of surprised at how quickly he made that statement.
I had very little interest but was also aware that a dose of healthy competition between two males was nature at its best. The truth: Scott had attempted to cock-block Rob with his statement about Rob’s stupid comment so it was obvious (at least in his mind) that it was Game On.
“Can I get your number or do you want me to go through this site?” Rob said, pointing to the Cheek’d card.
I gave him my number and he told me he’d call the next morning with time and location. He left soon after, and I turned back to Scott. I wasn’t ignoring my friend as she’d turned towards the woman next to her and they continued the conversation they’d started before Rob approached.
Scott ordered a second drink for the three of us and put his to-go order in as our conversation continued. I learned that he was divorced with a ten-year-old daughter. Not exactly what I was hoping to hear but given his age (45) and location, it was to be expected. With the freakishly successful fertility doctors in New York City it’s not uncommon for men in their fifties to have a set of twins still breastfeeding. I guess a fifth grader wasn’t so bad.
The conversation was stimulating and I found myself fantasizing about many more with him in the future. My friend joined in and mentioned that I was an exceptional cook. Scott asked if I would cook for him and I was already creating the menu in my mind. I imagined inviting him over and dining al fresco on the terrace. I pictured lots of candles, a great bottle of wine and the decedent meal I would prepare. I also imagined what might follow the feast—something even more delicious.
The bartender eventually arrived with his order—all boxed up and bagged. Scott handed him his credit card and then asked for my number. He suggested I text him when I got home as he hated to cut the evening short but had to deliver the meal to his relatives. Then he left but not before sharing how glad he was that we’d met and how much he was looking forward to knowing me better.
I’d say it was a pretty amazing night and there hadn’t been a time recently where I felt so belle of the ball-ish. Two men who were interested in one night? It wasn’t quite the days from my roaring thirties on Friday nights at Gordon Biersch, but close.
Back then I would strategically talk to four men (one per side of the square bar) looping around all night. I did that often and it was easy. Now it was a big night if someone called me “Miss” instead of “Ma’am.”
We stayed a little longer, finished our second martini and then asked for the bill.
“You’re all taken care of. The gentleman paid for your drinks,” said the bartender.
“All taken care of” was something I hadn’t felt in a long, long time. Even better? Scott took care of my drinks AND my friend’s and did so without fanfare. He was both generous and courtly. A keeper, for sure.
We swayed home—normally one martini is my limit—and I couldn’t wait to text Scott once in my apartment all PJed up, makeup washed off.
For the next hour we exchanged texts that grew increasingly flirty. He was a digital wordsmith and I loved the banter. Scott was leading our conversation down the path to sexting and although I was absolutely sexually attracted to him, I was wise enough to know I’d had too much to drink and would regret flying the freak flag with the sober sunrise illuminating my cyber slut-isms. Instead I told him I needed to get some sleep but before we signed off, I asked his last name. He gave it and then reiterated how happy he was and how lucky he felt that we met. I replied:
Me too, Scott. I’m really glad I met you.
He responded by telling me he HAD to see me soon. We’d make plans.
The next morning I woke up smiling even with a hangover. I scrolled through the text conversation again before getting out of bed. I knew I’d hear from Scott once he’d awakened I figured we might even meet for brunch.
Like clockwork, Rob called as he said he would at 10am. I couldn’t have been less interested but I tried to remember not to put all my eggs in one bin—as hard as that was. He suggested drinks and appetizers at a new wine bar on the Upper West Side on 72nd and Columbus, the Dakota Bar and insisted he would pick me up in the lobby of my building. Normally I would’ve been impressed with his follow through and gallantry but Scott occupied my brain and I was surprised I’d not heard from him.
By mid afternoon the radio silence continued. I didn’t reach out to him either, though, and here’s why. Scott is Alpha. He had no issue going after what he wanted the night before. He didn’t hesitate even when I repeatedly brushed him off while pursuing another man. He was very comfortable in that role and I knew if he wanted me, he’d make it happen.
But he hadn’t, yet.
LET THE CYBERSTALKING BEGIN!
I Googled Scott’s full name and nothing came up. Weird. I searched the firm he worked for and his name and nothing came up. Really weird. Then I simply searched his first name and his firm. Bingo! A company event and a photo of Scott. Except his last name was spelled much differently than what he’d texted. Seems Scott had given me the phonetic spelling of his name. Without outing him by giving you the two names, what he did was spell a part of his name with an “F” when a “PH” was how it was actually spelled. Obviously not a typo. What the hell?
LET THE “I THINK HE’S AN ASSHOLE” FRENZIED SEARCH PROCEED!
A few seconds later I had a pit in my stomach as I stared at a photo of Scott, his wife and little girl at a children’s charity event. It was only a few month old so not only did he lie about being married, he also added several years to his daughter’s age—probably because I’d told him my daughters were adults. His child was no more than four. He wasn’t bringing food to his brother and sister-in-law. While he chatted me up for almost two hours, his wife and child waited for him to bring home their dinner.
Wow, did I feel foolish. Thank God we didn’t sext.
I have no idea why Scott did what he did. Perhaps he gets off on playing women. Maybe it’s the thrill of the pursuit and the knowledge that he still has it? Possibly his marriage is boring? No matter the reason, he’s a scumbag. Halfway through our conversation at the bar he asked if I was divorced. I told him I was a widow and he expressed how sorry he was and then asked several questions about how I recovered from the loss. He KNEW the hardest thing I’d done after losing my husband was to attempt to make a new life and find love again. He knew I was certainly more vulnerable and maybe even more fragile than the average divorcee and, yet, he still pursued me with the knowledge that he was going to disappear back into his marriage without even a backward glance.
When you break it down, it’s truly twisted.
I never let Scott know I was onto him and deleted his number from my phone. He only lives a few blocks away and maybe one of these days I’ll pass him and his family on the street. I would never say anything. His wife will find out eventually whom she’s married to if she doesn’t already know. But I will take pleasure in looking him in the eye with an expression that reflects that I’m aware of who he is underneath that unassuming, exceedingly average exterior.
Well played, Scott, but one day you’ll pick the wrong woman, she won’t exit as quietly and might even be a bunny boiler.
My date(s) with Rob in the next installment.
To be continued…
“I’ve told Billy if I ever caught him cheating, I wouldn’t kill him because I love his children and they need a dad. But I would beat him up. I know where all of his sports injuries are.” Angelina Jolie