Help me please
I’m struggling right now to find the nicest and most uplifting way possible to communicate to a guy that he hasn’t got a chance on this side of the universe of going out with me (and that his chances on the other side of the universe are even slimmer).
This would be really simple in a casual one-time meeting situation. I would simply say I’m not interested or possibly tell a little white fib and say I’ve got a boyfriend and keep it moving. I’m currently faced, however, with a situation where my normal sweet as pie responses followed by hasty getaways are not effective. There’s this guy who is apparently a friend of one of my neighbors who has been persistently trying to ask me out for several weeks now. He always catches me when I’m getting out of my car to go into my building (or today when I was walking home from the bus stop). I usually speak politely and try to keep it moving but I feel so rude walking away from someone when they get out of their car just to talk to me (which is exactly what he does). The previous times he caught me when I was trying to get my mail out of the box which gave him a full sixty seconds or more to try to grab my attention. I have already turned him down a couple of times but my turndowns were clearly not decisive enough and were usually uttered in haste as I tried to hurry up and escape into the safety of my condo. Today when he asked if he had a chance at going out with me, I replied in the most cheery yet apologetic tone I could muster “I don’t think so.” But unfortunately I think he might have detected a glimmer of hope in my tone. I also spit out some nonsense about just getting out of a relationship…which isn’t a lie. But I think that just gave him the impression that all he needed was more time. Then he asked me how many times he was going to have to ask me before I agreed to go out with him. He asked “Would it be a thousand? Because,” he said “I’m already up to at least three.” I just laughed and hurried off. As I closed the front door of my building he promised that he would see me tomorrow. And judging from his impecable timing at being outside when I arrive home he very likely will.
Now you might ask why am I giving this young man such a hard time? Well It’s hard to answer that question without sounding like a stuck up bougie snob. But I promise I’m not a snob and I don’t think I’m stuck up either…..now my level of bourgieness may be up for debate. But in most circles I’m pretty sure I would not register as bougie. Based on my visual assessments and the brief exchanges we’ve had I think I can, with a fair amount of confidence, surmise that he and I would not have much in common. Let me try to describe his appearance on the occasions I saw him. He is always dressed in dirty jeans and a dirty t-shirt because I always run into him right after he just got off his obviously blue collar job. Now I have no problem with a man putting in a hard day of honest work for honest pay. But I can safely say that most guys (NOT ALL) who work blue collar jobs have different ambitions than I do. But in this case it’s not the blue collar work that’s the problem. He had these disheveled twisty sprouts sticking out in every direction on his head that he stood there twisting the whole time he was talking to me. I am not a big fan of grown men with …let’s just call them “expressive” hair styles like this, and the way he stood there twisting the twisties while he was trying to talk to me was unnerving.
The first time he spoke to me I noticed that he was smoking a cigarette. This is a definite deal breaker for me. I tried to overlook that flaw once in a past relationship and that was a huge mistake. I am the anti-smoking Nazi. That stance really doesn’t make for a pleasant relationship with a smoker. But the real clincher for me was when he used the word “conversate” while describing what a wonderful time we would have together. And he used it in his most earnest I’m trying to impress you voice. The EBP in me (thanks Stuff Educated Black People Like for the term) cringed at the utterance. That was the last nail in the coffin of this guys hopes of ever going out with me. Okay the last nail was actually when he told me his name was Chino. I’m not sure whether that’s a real name or a nickname but either way I can’t for the life of me picture myself dating a guy named Chino. (And I don’t care how bougie that makes me sound)
I try my best to be a nice girl and give people a fair chance. I really do. I tried not to judge him by his outward appearance. (Okay for real my initial assessment was that he had past charges for a domestic dispute, had been arrested at least twice for drug possession, had never been to college, had at least two children with whom he had minimal contact, and that he consumed copious amounts of weed in his spare time. But I felt really bad for pre-judging one of my black brethren this way. This is why I felt obligated to at least afford him the courtesy of a brief conversation before I dismissed him and ran away as fast as possible). What is a nice girl to do short of selling my condo and moving to PG county?
For now the hasty escapes are getting me through, but I will need to devise a more decisive method of turning him down for future exchanges since he has promised to keep trying. I don’t think telling him that I can’t date him because he looks like he strangled his last girlfriend will go over very well. So what in the world should I say?