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This was one of those moments. The moment you ask a question you don’t want to know the answer to.
Only you don’t realize you don’t want to know the answer until you actually hear it.
Because had you known it would swallow every romantic notion you had into a mushroom cloud of smoke… well, you just wouldn’t have asked.
It had been a week since I met my Vegas Tinderoni and we’d been texting every day since. If you’re anything like me, you hate texting. Especially with a guy you want to get to know better. Earlier in the week I gently suggested the transition to telephone and was shockingly shot down with the “I’m working on some stuff so no phone for me tonight but maybe sometime soon…”
Oh. Uh. Okay, I guess?
So I resort to texting and the intermittent laughs and cute quips last about an hour. Then, in between my writing and texting I begin to think about what a scary experience starting this blog is for me.
I wondered if he could relate.
Rule #1 Don’t ask questions you don’t want the answers to
So I ask, “What’s the scariest thing you’ve ever done?”
Rule #2 Don’t assume the answers to the questions you ask
I assume Tinderoni will share a story about the time he screwed up and made the wrong call while serving on a Navy ship in Singapore or the time he got lost on a long walk in Toyko and couldn’t find his way back.
But then I realize, these are not scary situations. So he begins to tell me that he’s done “a lot of crazy shit.” And the conversation goes a little something like this:
Tinderoni: “I’ve done some pretty scary shit. I like to walk a lot and explore the world and I like to try crazy things and experience taboo sometimes.”
Me: “Taboo? What’s Taboo to you?”
Tinderoni: “Nothing, nothing’s taboo to me.”
Rule #3 When responses are vague, don’t go digging
Me: (getting specific here) “please provide specific examples of a personal experience that may be perceived as taboo by others.”
Tinderoni: “ Well it’s not something to just come out and say, but I do believe in and dabble in psychedelics and free love, etc., etc.”
Okay so now I’m thinking, mushrooms? Mary Jane? I get it. I’m not much of a dabbler but I get it.
But Tinderoni, just how free is your love? And what exactly does your etcetera entail?
Little did I know, I was in for an education. He sent me a link to a reality show he watches that is, according to him, “a pretty good representation of the ideal.”
I receive an email marked “Poly.” Poly as in polyamory, as in many partners.
As in my dear, sweet Tinderoni sent me the entire series of a Showtime reality show called Polyamory about multiples of couples living (and loving) together in Southern California.
Against my better judgment I entertained my curiosity and watched an episode. Then another one. I texted him in between throwing him a line, “Does this mean I get you and Idris Elba?”
Tinderoni: “If you’d like. Not sounding too bad huh?”
Not sounding too bad?! I’m sick to my stomach. Turns out Tinderoni and I were worlds apart when it came to our outlook on love and marriage. I’m all about loving everyone but certainly not like this. I went to bed feeling all kinds of emotions that night: confused, shocked, curious, disappointed, queasy, tired, done.
The next day I woke up feeling nauseous. It was a combination of the blog launch to come and everything I heard and watched the night before.
Tinderoni texted me first thing the following day saying good morning. I responded. I thought I would ignore him but I didn’t. After a few exchanges, I came to my senses and said, “Okay… gotta wrap up the text fest. You’re a dangerous distraction.” He responded.
“You’ll be back, they always come back…”