Thursday, July 21, 2011
Chez Gérard - Day Three
With Jason it all just seemed so comfortable and natural which, I thought, was a good thing. Honestly, how often do you meet someone and ‘click’ with them? Like almost instantly? I know it’s rare for me at least. So much so, that soon it had gotten to the point where I feared that I had fallen into that dreaded ‘friend zone’. We’d been speaking for a while and it had gotten to the point where I thought we were never going to meet as he travelled quite a bit for work. But then I persuaded myself that it wasn’t necessarily a bad thing if we didn’t. We were getting on really well, so why was I putting a time limit on it? And what if I was in the ‘friend zone’ would that be a bad thing?
So one night he calls with an unusual tone to his voice, it was like speaking to a completely different person. He’d been feeling down for a while, so decided to take some time off work. When I pressed him for a reason, he just said that he felt like something needed to change but he wasn’t quite sure what. He apparently needed to get out and have fun and I was number one on his list! Yay! I instantly got excited, we had such a great relationship over the phone that meeting in person would be amazing right?
Since he had left the site, I couldn’t remember what he looked like! We joked about it and I asked him to email me a picture so I would be able to recognise him. Fair enough I would have thought… However, he said it would be interesting to not send pictures and instead tell each other what we’re going to wear… hmmmm … I wasn’t too keen on the idea to be honest and anyone who’s ever been on an internet date or even a blind date can relate to this. It’s hard enough looking at a picture or even a few pictures and then identifying the person in the flesh! Even still, I agreed. I mean, what was the worst that could happen?...
As a joke, I said I’d wear a rose in my hair and he said he’d wear one is his hair too. Oh Jason did make me laugh; only… he was not kidding! I was a tad concerned, though I convinced myself that he was going to come up with some extremely romantic way of giving that rose to me.
So there I was standing outside Topshop in Charing Cross, frantically looking around trying to see if I could recognise him but at the same time trying to look calm and relaxed. It was odd, I didn’t even know what I was looking for but I just kept looking (how very appropriate!) Then I spotted the most random dressed man I’d seen in a while. And I will never forget, he was wearing brown Ugg boots, white skinny jeans, a white t-shirt that had a v-neck practically to the navel, a scarf and sunglasses to top it off. I couldn’t help but look him up and down; it was a special outfit that’s for sure! But you know, each to their own, who am I to judge someone who…. Is that a pink rose in his hair?!! Oh my goodness, why is he wearing a rose in his hair! And then it clicked… No surely it can’t be him in that ensemble, can it?
‘Helene, we finally meet!’ It is Jason! With a pink hair band, yes I said pink, on his head with a rose…no joke! We hugged and I was in shock…. This is not how I imagined him at all. I asked if the rose was for me (why else would he be wearing it right?!) Well no, I was wrong! ‘He told me it was ‘part of his outfit’ …
I wasn’t even listening when he said we were headed to Chez Gerrad, I was still in shock! Can men wear Ugg boots? Because honestly they are borderline feminine and with that v-neck… I just couldn’t cope. I needed to acclimatise to this whole fashion statement he was making and I was just getting my head around the idea when he stopped, took off his sunglass and asked if he had something in his eye. Bloody Nora!
Now eyeliner, is eye liner, is eyeliner. It doesn’t matter who is wearing it, it’s still EYELINER! If a man is wearing makeup, he is wearing makeup! What is all this ‘guy liner’ rubbish?! I’m not quite sure how Russell Brand managed to make wearing makeup and nail varnish manly but ever since then a few men have jumped on board. Ok fine each to their own; however, if a man is wearing more eye liner than you, it is a cause for concern, right?
Was he gay? Yes. But how did I know he was gay? I just knew. Could I get him to at least remove the hair band?! Was that rude? But was I sure he was gay? I mean, have I just made him gay because of his collaboration of an outfit?!! I can’t be sure until he admits it! Well he obviously doesn’t know he’s gay if he is, otherwise he wouldn’t have been on a straight dating website! Ok, I needed a drink and a strong one to get through this.
Jason was in the middle of saying something when I just got up and headed to the bar. ‘Let me guess…. A Strawberry Daiquiri right?’ I look up and it’s the same fricking barman! Do they not ever give their staff days off in this place?!!! Before I had a chance to order the shot of vodka that I so badly needed, Jason comes to tell me that our table is ready. The barman nearly spilt my drink when he saw him. He gave me that look, you know the look that says so many things one of which probably being ‘What the fu*k?!’
I decided my mission was to make Jason admit that he was gay… but how? And what if I was wrong! What if he wasn’t gay at all but just liked to experiment with fashion?! Ok, I needed to get a grip… I tried to ignore the huge pink rose in his bright pink hairband and the fact that I could practically see his nipples through his top and start the conversation. He admitted to feeling lost (aha!) and confused (BINGO!) but didn’t know why…. (Oh but I think I do!)
We left the restaurant and started to walk around the plaza and I decided to take a leap of faith. Most importantly, Jason was my friend, our phone relationship was so great, so I told him that even though we don’t really know each other, we’re still friends and I care about him and if there was anything at all he wanted to get off his chest he could. Sometimes it’s easier to speak to a stranger about some things. I smile, hug him and carry on walking. He catches up to me and holds my hand and we just walked, in silence, aimlessly for what seemed like ages…
Lying on the grass near embankment, both staring at the sky, neither of us had said much… and then he spoke. I guess he was ready… Him joining the website was his one last attempt to try and be straight, he was afraid of what his friends and family would say, he was petrified of what it meant and what it was going to mean now he had allowed himself to realise he was indeed gay… and then we talked non-stop for hours…
This particular date left me thinking… It just so happened that Jason was gay, so I was right that time. But what about if there’s a next time? What if I were to meet another guy who liked to dress out of the stereotype of what I considered to be heterosexual?! Will I just assume he’s gay also? I’m still not 100% on board with men, makeup, nail varnish and skinny jeans, but does that mean I would turn down the chance of finding happiness based on that?
I hope not…