Lovestruck. Absolutely, totally, almost comically lovestruck.
God knows (well, I know it, too) how many times I see men that I think are cute, sweet, have something about them, are fascinating, charming, sexy, handsome. When I lay my eyes on one of them, all sorts of thoughts get triggered. Not necessarily sexual, but the point is that my mind is generally losing itself in multiple scenarios, possibilities, dialogues, images, sensations, dreams.
This time, instead, it was different. Two Fridays ago I was rushing out of Oxford Circus station, late for a job, and when I was approaching the Oyster barriers I saw this tall Tfl employee… And boom! I literally felt my heart skip a beat. I would like to describe that moment with a less cliché expression, but that’s exactly what I felt. Something heavy falling inside me, and my heart stopping. Then, it was a strange sense of stillness inside, together with a fire. What exactly struck me more about him? Hard to say. In one glance, I took in his blue eyes (that I don’t even like, normally! I’m all for brown, green or grey eyes!), his squared jaw, his height, and his killer dimples. He was just leaning against one of the barriers, checking that everything was going smoothly. When I tapped out, I bravely looked up at him and, with half a smile, I said: “Good morning”.
Ok, still better than saying “I carried a watermelon” as in Dirty Dancing, but surely not something that would have impressed him particularly. In that moment, however, it was the best thing that came up to my mind. He smiled back, dimples galore (another little crack inside me… oh, my!), and he counterstruck with an equally poignant: “Good morning”. End of our magical exchange.
The moment I went out of the station, I sent a vocal note to a friend, such was the excitement I was feeling and the gratitude towards God for filling this world with such…. BBBBBBBBBBONI (gorgeous men). Then and there, I took the decision that, once the job would be over, I had to go back and invite him for a coffee.
And so I did, only one hour later, but he was not there any longer. Oxford Circus is a big station, with many exits, so I went in and out here and there, but no trace of Mr Tfl. “My usual luck” I thought, together with “It serves you right! Next time you have to ask for someone’s number right when you see him!”.
But this man was just something else. I couldn’t accept defeat so easily. I checked the two other Tfl employees there, and I decided to turn to the younger and cooler looking one. “Excuse me, there was a tall colleague of yours, an hour ago…” “With a blue shirt?” “Yes” “Oh, I see, you mean Y. He’s finished his shift” “Well, I don’t know his name, but I’d need to talk with him.” He looks at me a bit concerned: “What about?”
… And that’s when my love and need for transparency overwrote possible sensibility. “Well, I could surely come up with some reasonable excuse, but the truth is that I got lovestruck”. There you go. He laughed and said: “Wow, then we need to do something about it. Well, you’ll find him here every day next week in the morning.”
Ok… but still not good enough. I played all my cards (smile, puppy eyes, jokes, right tone of voice… you all know which cards you have) and went all in: “Would it be so unconceivable for you to give me his phone number? I’m not a stalker, I promise”. He didn’t have it, or he would have given it to me… Then he remembered that one of his colleagues might have it, so he went downstairs at the platform and came back 5 minutes later with a lady, who showed me Mr Tfl on Instagram (to make sure we were talking about the same person!). Finally, through Instagram, she found his number.
“You’ve got balls”, she said. “Wish me good luck. If it goes well, you’ll be my bridesmaid”, I replied, so thankful for these two helping angels, and we ended this breach of privacy with a laugh.
Once out of the station, I called him. No point in sending him a text, leaving him the chance to read it, think that I must be crazy and potentially a big nuisance, and block my number as too many people nowadays do. I called him, and he answered the second time. “Hello,Y… Well, start laughing…” I explained him the whole situation, saying that he was the second best thing I had seen that day besides a Golden Retriever puppy, so I had to come back and ask him for a coffee.
“Wow, I’m flattered. Nobody else has ever gone through so much effort to get my number”. “Good to hear that, so I think you should reward my bravery by accepting my invitation”. And he did.
Being able to make all of this happen has filled me with… yes, pride. And happiness. Not for the outcome, that I don’t know yet, but for being able to see someone I like and go for it. Happiness and satisfaction for my way of thinking and acting. Happiness because despite all the times that it went wrong, I still believe by default that one day it can go well. My optimistic nature has not been defeated. Beaten up a lot of times, but it’s still there, resilient. Happiness because it’s in situations like this that I feel I’m really living the moment, seizing the day, squeezing out possibilities. Happiness because I feel a master of my life. And pride because it’s something that I have conquered, that I have worked hard to get to, not a gift I was born with, like some people could see it.
When I told my friends about this, they all answered, in different degrees, that I’m crazy. None of them would have had the courage to do what I did, and yet they all love my story. They love it, because they wish they could have my same, extremely high level of embarrassment (it really takes me a lot to stop from doing something). Or they wish they could handle rejection like me.
“You are crazy”.
Let’s analyse this craziness, then. I start from the assumption that I already carry a “No” in my pocket. If I hadn’t done anything, Mr Tfl would have been just a super hot guy I saw, full stop. A “no” man, someone that will never enter into my life, and that I will never know. By doing what I did, I could receive a “no”, which leads me to scenario n.1. No change. But he could also say “yes”, which I would never have got by not activating myself as I did. In other words, there is only something to be won. There is nothing to lose.
“Well, there is, actually. Your dignity”.
For those that think like this, I feel very sorry. It must be hard to go on in life thinking that we always have to give the best impression of us to others. It means that you are constantly worried by people’s opinion, and we know that this is so bad. I don’t care what other people can think of me if I get rejected. I only care about what I can get by trying my luck.
Plus, whether we like it or not, rejection is a common element in one’s life. How many times have you rejected someone you didn’t like, and being rejected yourself by someone else? I have lost count many years ago. Now I know that there is nothing personal in rejections. Nothing is ever personal, to be honest. Especially in a case like this, where the guy has not seen me and doesn’t know anything about me, his rejection wouldn’t have had anything to do with me, but rather with his situation and preconcepts. And also: even if he rejects you, in the big scheme of your life, what relevance does it have? It could be bad luck, at the utmost. It doesn’t affect my perception of myself, or my value.
More importantly than all this: we have only one life (let’s leave the reincarnation debate aside). We only have this moment. And I want to live it fully.
A friend even arrived to tell me that if a guy contacted her like I did, she would think that she does that with every woman, and not because she is special.
Well, if someone goes through all this effort to get someone’s number all the time, every day, with every person they meet, he or she must surely be unemployed. Where would you find all that time?
Secondly: how can you expect to be special for the other person, when he doesn’t know you at all? This Mr TFl has been special to me because I’ve never had such a reaction. The reaction, however, was purely on a physical level, for his almost illegal level of gorgeousness. I will know if he’s really special only by spending some time with him. And in any case, in general, when you receive a nice bunch of roses smell their perfume, don’t start looking and counting the thorns! Especially if, by your own admission, you never go around giving flowers. (got my metaphor?)
Personally, I would go out with anyone that had the courage, the initiative, the wicked mind to get my number somehow, because such efforts should absolutely be rewarded.
Tomorrow I’m seeing him for our second coffee (wish me good luck!). I smile to myself. Who’s the crazy one here? Me, or those that drag their lives on without ever daring? Me, or those that are missing out on the chance of getting to know someone that struck them, just because their way of thinking is an obstacle to themselves?
Don’t bother to reply. I have my answer.
“I’m not crazy. My reality is just different from yours.”
(And I’m so glad about it!)
Alice in Wonderland