The One Who Caught My Eye
Scottie homes in on a six foot beauty who is unfortunately attached … or is he?
While walking out of my favourite little drinking spot in Dublin, my eye picks out a guy at the bar. Six foot something, dark hair and wearing a polo shirt, he happens to turn around just as I pass him by.
Our eyes meet, which of course, make me turn away shyly. When I turn back, I see he’s still looking at me, standing in the same spot with two drinks in his hand. This time, I smile briefly before turning away. I give it a whole two seconds before turning back, to see that the mystery man had clearly done the same; turning back to look at me a final time, just as I had turned to look at him. Both of us smiled with the same stupid grin, before I finally made it to the door.
Had either one of us been from north America, one would’ve had no problem with approaching the other and saying hello. Instead, the Irish are similar to our British neighbours in this regard; it takes a common friend to break the ice before strangers can get to know one another. That friend is usually vodka.
Telling my friend what he failed to see as he was walking a few metres ahead of me, I giggled about what just happened, but I didn’t see him for the rest of our night out on the town. I didn’t know who he was, but he looked ridiculously familiar. When I looked back at him the second time, it was partly to check him out, but also to try and figure out where I knew him from. By the third time, I had given up my mental investigations and was just enjoying the view.
The following day though, I noticed a friend request pop up on my Facebook. I recognised the face and the name, but I still couldn’t place where I knew this new friend from. I accepted and sent him a message, thanking him for the request and despite his familiar features, I still couldn’t figure out where I knew him from.
“I spotted you out the other night,” he explained, “and thought I’d add you! Not sure if we’ve actually spoken to one another before, but we’ve so many friends in common that I’m sure we’ve been out in the same places before!”
My heart skipped a beat and that same stupid grin returned to my face. The mystery man from the bar found me online! It wouldn’t have been too difficult, in fairness, as it turned out he was so familiar because we were following each other on Twitter for months already. That’s the typical thing with socialising online; you can have great chats with new online friends, but when you see the person in real life, you might not know it’s them at first.
As it turned out, my mystery man knew who I was, revealing that he thought I “looked much hotter in real life.” This is where I melted into a puddle, just like I did when I first saw Peter Andre’s music video for ‘Mysterious Girl’. Alas, a Las Vegas wedding was not going to be on the cards, as it turned out he was dating someone, and shouldn’t have been doing a triple-take in my direction in the first place. My heart sank, but stayed friendly to hide the disappointment. It didn’t take too long for me to see him out again; this time, with his boyfriend and friends. I briefly waved hello when I accidentally made eye contact, but kept my distance for the entire night.
Months passed, with my no-longer-mysterious guy occasionally popping up on my social networks. Over those months, I eventually noticed that if he posted a new photo, his boyfriend wasn’t there. Fair enough – you don’t ever need to be attached to your partner’s hip – but it soon became clear that the boyfriend wasn’t in the picture anymore, in more ways than one. Once I realised that, I thought: oh no, that’s a real shame. My massive grin was just a by-product of my pity, of course…!
Christmas came, and the masses came out partying with it. On the busy Friday night after Christmas, I went out with a few of my friends to escape the cabin fever that the holidays bring. Dancing my head off and laughing with friends were the only things I had in mind, but then I noticed him. My mystery man was dancing with some mutual friends on the dancefloor; drink in hand and head swaying to the rhythm of the pop music. I ran over to the group and hugged one of our mutual friends, who is always a dancing partner when I’m out with him and our friends. As time went by, there came a moment when Mystery Man & I were dancing with each other to ‘It’s Not Right, But It’s Okay’ (just in case you didn’t already presume we were in a gay club!). I couldn’t stop laughing from the moves and faces he was pulling; channelling a drunken-yet-still-kinda-manly Whitney Houston. Of course, that’s a compliment for Whitney, more than anyone else, but it still put a smile on my face.
The night came eventually to an end, but knowing Mr. Mystery had gone slightly passed the tipsy stage, I – who was perfectly sober that night – decided not to let a move be made. If anything was to happen, I figured, it should be made with a clear mind. I bid goodnight to my friends and called it a night.
It seems that my decision to be good that night paid off, as a few nights passed by before I got another Facebook message from him;
“I don’t suppose you’d like to go for a coffee sometime, would you?”
[To read the previous instalment of Scott’s column, click here.]
‘Scottie’ Illustrations by Stephen Charlick