Saturday, November 14, 2009

Do You Like Me? Yes or No….Please Check One

How does one determine if someone really likes you? Not just likes you, but LIKES you, likes you. Not as a platonic friend, but as a potential ‘love interest’ for lack of a better term.

Apparently, you can’t just ask the person! Well, you can, but that might scare them off.

A hypothetical situation:

You sign up to attend a workshop; let’s say a 10-week gourmet cooking course. At the first session, you see a very attractive guy who is also taking the class. You smile at him he smiles at you and you engage in small talk with him and other classmates. The first session is over and you say your goodbyes/see you next class. He’s good-looking, friendly, and likes to cook! Is he married? Dating? Single? He’s not wearing a wedding ring. What’s going on with him?

At the next session he is there again smiling, making (non-creepy) eye contact, he makes sure he talks to you specifically (sans other classmates) during a break or two, which you notice he does not do with any of the other ladies in the class. The conversation is respectful and he does not hit on you. You could like him, if he’s single and interested in you, but you don’t know what he’s thinking. Maybe he’s just really gregarious, a great conversationalist and not interested in you at all.

Session three you are paired with another classmate on a cooking project, Even though he is paired with someone else, he makes it a point to talk to you. He’s nice to your partner but it’s clear you are the ‘B’ in the ‘A/B’ conversation. As he did in session #2 he talks to you during the breaks, during which he makes several ‘I’ statements. “I bought a great set of knives while I was out Saturday.” “I am going on vacation next month.” “I can’t wait to get to Spain.” He doesn’t mention a wife or children. Is he making conversation or is he trying to let you know he is single? Is he an extrovert who loves to talk or is he interested in you and trying to suss out if you might be interested in him?

How do you determine what; if anything; is going on?

What You Would Like to Do:

Wouldn’t you love to ask?

“Are you married?”
“Are you engaged or dating someone?”
“Are you interested in me?”

Why can’t you ask those questions?! It’s what you want to know! Isn’t the direct route the best way to get to where you want to go? No gamesmanship, no ‘playing hard-to-get’ or whatever; direct communication.

I’ll tell you why, because you’ll sound crazy and slightly stalker-like.

I am not saying honesty is not a good thing. It’s just that most people like the game, the subterfuge, the hunt, the chase, all that crap.

So you don’t ask, instead you…..

What You Actually Do:

You keep the conversation superficial because you worry if you try to get deeper you might scare the guy off. You talk about this week’s cooking assignment, last week’s cooking assignment, next week’s cooking assignment. It’s the third session, so you’ve already discussed what you both do for a living, perhaps it’s safe to detour into something more personal.

But what kind of conversational gymnastics must you perform to find out if the guy is married without asking him is he married? Oh…and NOT appear nosy and/or desperate?

Anyone? Anyone?

It seems to me discovering whether or not someone likes you, likes you is rather like hunting; you must employ stealth and cunning in order to bag your deer or moose or whatever heck you’re out in the woods looking for.

*Deep sigh*

Remember in elementary school. The Love Note. You remember the love note!!

I like you. Do you like me? Please check one.

Simple. Straightforward. And not necessarily for the faint-of-heart.

Why can’t we do this as adults?