What is it with overweight older men with man boobs who proudly post these pictures of themselves in bathing suits? I may not be the Sports Illustrated poster girl, but I at least try to post pictures that will catch someone, not nauseate them. This does not seem to be a good night for online dating. I came across his profile while perusing through mounds of profiles with one worse than the other. By all counts he looked like what American women would call a "Silver Fox." A handsome older man with silver hair. Someone who has aged well. He lives in Puerto Madero. (New money as opposed to old money in Recoleta or Barrio Parque) I send him a message.
We play tag for awhile and finally exchange numbers. I hear nothing. Sometimes that happens. Out of the clear blue he sends me a message on a Saturday. He asks how I am. We go back and forth for awhile, and he informs me he has pink eye, so he can't meet me just yet. Ahh, OK. He tells me that we can meet later when he is better. Sure, fine. The last thing I want is a case of pink eye.
A couple hours later I am at the gym when he sends me a message. He wants to know where I am. Huh? I tell him at the gym. I send him a picture of me in the gym. This is so Buenos Aires. He tells me he is on the way home from lunch in the province and he will come pick me up. Ah, I don't think so. One, I am a gym mess. Two, more important, I don't get into cars with men I don't know. Three, what happened to his pink eye? I decline his invitation and ask him about his pink eye. He sort of waffles on that (must have been my picture in the gym) and says we could go to a movie. I tell him once again that I am not available. He suggests some gourmet faire. No! No! No! What part of NO do you not understand? I hate that kind of persistence, but since they say women here say no and not really mean it, men pursue until no means yes. My no is no. He says he will call me on Monday.
Monday comes and I get another Whats App. That is how people date here. I should be used to it, but I still feel a guy should call you. We make plans to meet on Wednesday at Alto Palermo Shopping. It is a big shopping center located on a main street in Palermo. He sends me a map and directions how to get there. I am too amazed to be pissed. Does he really think that I am that stupid I would not know where a major shopping center is located in my neighborhood?
On Wednesday we text a few times. I tell him I will meet him inside the door on the Santa Fe side. I sent him a message when I leave for there. He tells me he is already there. I hop on the bus and am there in 10 minutes. I walk to the door. No guy. No silver fox. Not even anyone who looks like it might be him. I send him a message. He tells me he went to the bathroom. More like he is upstairs checking me out to make sure I am not 20 lbs heavier and older than my picture.
He makes his magic appearance. He looks like his picture. The picture was maybe a few years older. What is wrong with these people who post old pictures? Do they think they don't age? Do they think they look the same? We all age, even me, and I have Dr. Mobilia. It is OK. He still looks good. He isn't pregnant. We decide to go upstairs and have a coffee.
We sit down and start to talk. He tells me that he was married for 30 years and separated for 5. Hmm. His ex works in one of his business but not the other. They don't live together. Hmm. The business analyst self starts to appear. I can't help it. Something is not right here.
He asks me about myself. They all want to know what I am doing here. So I give the short version. I am not in the mood to give the long version. I tell him I like to write. I tell him that I am writing a book. (Yes, I am. For real this time, and no it is not another American tango dancer sleeps with everyone in the milonga book. Besides, I never did that.) He asks if I will put him in my book. I tell him no,but if he is lucky he will end up in my blog. He likes that. If he only knew.
After the usual "why are you here questions" I get him to talk about himself. Other than his ex. He shows me a picture of the building he lives in, in Puerto Madero. Why would I want to see a picture of a building? I can show you lots of pictures of buildings, but it doesn't mean I live there. He lets it slip that he has no garage and he parks on the street. Now that is weird. You would have to live here to know how weird that is. Puerto Madero is upscale. People do not park their cars on the street.
Suddenly he grabs my hand. "Don't you think we make a beautiful couple?" I snatch my hand away from his. "I don't know." I tell him. "I don't know you." I really hate when they do this. I want to scream "Don't touch me." But I don't. I know, there are some women who are flattered by this. I am not one of them. "No," he says, "Look at me, look at you. We look great together." This guy does not give up. "I don't have a mirror." I tell him.
Now for the killer. "So, do you like to travel?" I ask him. "Yes," he says. "I love to travel." "Where is your favorite place?" He answers "La Plata, Lujan, Campagna." The %$&# province??? This was the complete WRONG answer. It is like living in San Francisco and saying you like to go to San Mateo, or San Jose, or Sausalito. Or NYC and saying you like to go to the Bronx, or Brooklyn. I say to him far from amused, "That is the province, I mean outside of the country." . God, he could have at least said Montevideo.
He turns it around. "Where have you traveled that you like?" I mention a few countries. He nods his head. He asks me where I would like to go. I tell him "Asia. China, Thailand, Vietnam." This guy is not dumb. He tells me he has been to China. I ask him if he liked it. He says it was OK. I asked him where he went and what was it like. He tells me he cannot really remember. I ask him where else he went, he mentions Malaysia. Same questions, same no answers. I realize that what he has done is select places I have not been to. Sigh.
I am getting bored. He is more like the silverfish than the silver fox. An insect. He notices I am bored. He calls for the check and we head for the escalators. Once again he says to me, "We make a beautiful couple." Before I can say anything he tells me to look up. There are mirrors on the escalator going the other way. Now what am I supposed to say? "Ahh, yes." I tell him. He continues on. I tune him out.
When we get to the ground floor he asks if he can take me home. I have the GPS turned on my phone. I am curious to see this car that is left out on the street. Even here. In this barrio. We walk several blocks. His car is the cheapest toyota you can buy. OK, you need to understand, here in Argentina people buy cars they cannot afford and live in houses without floors or sewers. There are no auto leases and the loans are prohibitive. People pay cash. It is highly unlikely that someone who lives in Puerto Madero, parks their car on the street and owns the cheapest Toyota. The saying "Clothes make the man" does not apply here, men themselves will tell you "A man without a car is no one." Make no mistake. I am not a snob. If I decided to buy a car here it would most likely be a lower end car. I don't need or want a car, so it is not that important to me. But for an Argentine, this is like someone in Beverly Hills using a rent a dent car.
The other wierd thing is he does not know how to get to Plaza Italia. Either this guy has a horrible sense of direction, or he does not live in the Capital, and he is lying about living in Puerto Madero. This is like living in NYC and not knowing how to get to Times Square, or living in San Francisco and not knowing where the Presidio is. Impossible.
He wants to activate his GPS. I tell him to forget it. I will get us there. "Are you sure?" I want to clobber him, but instead I say" I know I am blond, but I know where I live. Don't worry." We drive the 10 blocks to my neighborhood and to my street. Instead of pulling in front of my building he stops on the corner.
I put my hand on the door and start to open it. I tell him "Thanks for the coffee. If you want to see me again, you know my number." "Wait," he says. "Are you going to kiss me?" You know someone should tell these men, that if they have to ask the answer is no. I am so tired of this pre-adolescent system of dating. A kiss should be consensual. You should not have to ask or force it. I never remember one guy asking me to kiss him in the US and their were..uh, lots of them. It just happened.
I lean over and kiss his cheek, one foot is out the door of his car. Dumb I am not. He grabs my arm, "That was not a kiss." I have my keys between my fingers. "Bueno," I tell him, "Pensas en otra, no yo." (Think about someone else, not me.) I leave his car and slam the door.
I walk to my building. The security guy opens the door. "Everything OK Deby?" he asks. I smile, "Yes, everything is OK. Perfect." I wonder if I should send Mr. Silverfish a copy of my blog.