Thursday, May 08, 2008

It's a good thing no one expects me to be her wingwoman

I am not particularly good at flirting, and therefore I rarely do it on purpose. I am, however, particularly good at letting whatever thought pops into my head find its way immediately out of my mouth, and when these thoughts are directed at male strangers in social settings, I'm pretty sure they are often misconstrued as flirting. Women don't talk to men unless they want to sleep with them, right? Or so every stereotypical meathead portrayed in modern television and movies would have me believe.

Accidental flirting is not necessarily a bad thing, I suppose. I have a friend who advocates flirting with everyone, male or female, interesting and attractive or not. The theory, I guess, is that it helps to present oneself as warm and pleasant and it makes the person on the other end feel complimented and special. It's also probably good practice. If you're constantly in "flirting" mode on auto-pilot, you don't need to think about it when you actually want to reel a potential date in.

The problem is that the comments I make towards strangers are rarely comments that any woman in her right mind would use if she were actually trying to flirt on purpose. A conversation starter is a conversation starter, so perhaps I'm the only one who's overanalyzing my unintentionally ridiculous unintentional lead-ins this way. Then again, maybe I'm not. Case in point? Last night’s Devotchka show.

The scene: Average and unremarkable guy who I have no intention of purposely flirting with walks towards me on his way to the bar. I note that he's wearing a navy blue version of the t-shirt I received when I volunteered for the Minneapolis Central Library opening.

Me: Hey! You're wearing a library shirt!
Guy in library shirt: I am!
Me: I have the same shirt. Mine's red, though.
GILS: Well how 'bout that? This is the first time I've worn mine.
Me: I wore mine to bed last night.
GILS: (...)
GILS: I think that's a little TMI. (Smiles, walks away.)

Shockingly, in my 20s most of the guys I went out with were guys I met at concerts in bars. Either I am really rusty or guys in their 20s didn't listen to a word I said. Frankly, I'm not sure which explanation I prefer.


Jess said...

Oh, come on. He couldn't handle THAT? He's a wimp.

steve said...

TMI? Bedtime apparel is the beginning of a fascinating conversation, certainly NOT TMI.

Anonymous said...

I see several options here.

1. The guy is socially awkward.

2. You caught him by surprise; he didn't know what to say, so he ran away.

3. He is not single.

4. All of the above.

Anonymous said...

Haaa. I wasn't expecting that. What a goober. I was expecting him to be thrilled! Did women dream up the whole "what are you wearing?" thing? Nay, 'twas dudes.

And I'm totally stealing that. Whatever he's wearing? I totally wore it the previous night, and I gots me a fresh new pickup line.

--Shana in MO

Aaron said...

Wow. What a dumbass.

(The dude, not you.)

Jess said...


Oy vey. Methinks he doesn't understand the art of a little flirtitious humor.

Michelle | Bleeding Espresso said...

I thought that was pretty good flirting, especially as it was unintentional. He's a boob.

lizgwiz said...

Well, if you had been purposely flirting, I would be offended on your behalf that he didn't take such lovely bait. But since you weren't, I guess I'm...relieved for you? ;)

L Sass said...

I am going with -R-'s option 3 here. That line would SO work to reel in your average dorkity dork dork guy.

shelleycoughlin said...

I am sad that a guy wearing a library shirt is so obviously clueless. Alas, it is fairly indicative of the male librarian set as a whole.

Anonymous said...

What's up with that guy? That sounds like excellent flirting to me, even if it was unintentional.

And, if it will make you feel any better, I was once flirting with a guy, and I noticed his fly was open. I wanted to tell him, but I couldn't think of a good way. Finally, he noticed that obviously something was distracting me, so he asked what was wrong. I burst out laughing, gestured toward his crotch, and blurted out, "I just can't stop staring at it!"

Clearly, I can't flirt worth a damn. :)

3carnations said...

I'm thinking he wasn't single, and found it very awkward that a woman he doesn't know told him what she slept in last night. :)

metalia said...

Hmm...I don't think there's anything "TMI" about what you said! That was some Grade A flirting, even if it was unintentional. :)

Mair said...

What an ass. That sounds like one of those "Now I'm in charge of this conversation" moments that I so loathe.

Anonymous said...

Hmm. I used to go up to guys and ask them if they were in one of my classes. Apparently, this was not as smooth as I thought it was.

But enough about me. That guy is definitely either not single or not straight.