What not to say to someone you're just getting to know
Sometimes it's hard to talk about, because you want to believe the average person possesses the basic common sense to, as Grandma Rosa says, not "act (like) a fool!"
Occasionally though, I'm reminded that belief is just wishful thinking.
So I was riding the people mover in downtown Miami about 30 minutes ago, on my way back to the newspaper with a court file I'd gone to pick up for an article. I had five stops to go.
At stop number one, a young man steps into the car and looks around. His eyes light up when he spies another young man a few feet away. He approaches. The other guy lifts his eyes. A second of recognition and then they laugh.
I'll call 'em Guy 1 (who was already on the train) and Guy 2. So Guy 2 says "Yo! How you been man? I haven't seen you since (indecipherable) party. I was thinkin' after that 'Yo, that guy was cool. I could probably hang out with him, you know just kick it'."
Now, let's pause for a moment: I know some of you will think this is a tale of failed bromance. But it isn't. This is more along the lines of the guy who is clueless enough to ask a first date if he can touch her.
Moving right along, Guy 1 nods enthusiastically, indicating he felt the same way about Guy 2.
For a couple of minutes they engage in small talk. By the third train stop the conversation shifted. Guy 2 asks Guy 1 if the latter had seen a certain young woman lately.
"Not since the party," Guy 1 says.
Guy 2 nods thoughtfully and then says "You know I heard she was a freak, right?"
Guy 1 grins coyly - as guys who really don't know are wont to do in order to keep up appearances - and nods. Then he volunteers "You know we texted each other for a minute after that party. Yo, she was sayin' all kinds of stuff, like she wanted to get with me. I might have to, you know..."
Guy 2 giggles and exchanges a cool hand shake with Guy 1. We've just passed the fourth train stop. One more to go.
They both chat for another minute about their sexual prowess and the humongous number of women they've turned down.
We're at the final train stop. Guy 1 and Guy 2 step off the train. I follow. Not 'cause I'm trying to eavesdrop, but because I happen to be walking the same direction.
At the bottom of the stairs, right before they step onto the sidewalk, Guy 2, wearing a "Hey, I just got a bright idea!" look, turns to Guy 1 and says of the alleged freak "You know, we could probably both get buck naked and (hook up) with her at the same time!"
Verrrrrrry pregnant pause. Like a vacuum. Like when a fighter jet passes overhead and breaks the speed of sound, and you have that moment of weird serenity, before the sonic boom follows.
Guy 1, face screwed up in horror - maybe mock horror, but it didn't look like it, sidesteps the playful punch Guy 2 has just thrown at his shoulder and snaps "Man, somethin's wrong with you. I don't know you like that!"
Guy 2 looks stunned and remains flat-footed as Guy 1, looking furtively over his shoulder to make sure Guy 2 isn't following, stalks off toward a nearby college.
I suspect these two will not be hanging out or kickin' it anytime soon.
Some things are not good conversation for budding friendships. And if you don't get it, please let me advise you to not:
- ask the slightly paunchy checkout woman at the grocery when she's due, unless you are 100% certain she's pregnant,
- tell your new would-be girlfriend on a second date that she should perform certain acts with you...and soon, because your last girlfriend did,
- ask your new gal pal to accompany you to divorce court, so you can lean on her while you do battle with your soon-to-be-ex husband.
- tell your new pal that you have a rash,
- or tell your new pal that he shouldn't worry 'cause your foaming at the mouth will stop as soon as your meds kick in.
Keep "too much, too soon" in the back of your mind, and you should be safe from Guy 2-type mistakes.