“Do what makes you happy, Stephen, but don’t do those…. one night stand things… that just makes me frightened” My grandmother’s sound advice. Now, though I have been figuring out how relationships work for quite some time, and though I often go to gay bars. I have never, ever, ever “met” anyone at a bar, let alone experienced that all-to-common “one night stand” phenomenon. That is, until last Thursday. Please don’t read the rest if you don’t want to!
I was sitting there at my favourite bar, one of only three bars in the whole of Auckland that anyone could ever call “gay”, determined to have a good time, singing along to the karaoke and talking affably to anyone who happened to be nearby (usually, the barman, Ben).
Anyway, this Nuwayan woman (I mention her nationality because she made sure to point it out) stood between myself and this other guy, engaging us both in conversation. He and I spoke with her for a while, sharing knowing glances as we did so. She left and in her wake left social eddies that allowed us to easily break the ice.
“I think she likes you” I joked, he grinned and came to stand next to me.
I guessed him to be no more than a few years older than me. Nice looking, nice accent, warm smile. We had a few things in common since I’d been in the states for a few years and the conversation flowed effortlessly.
“Wow” I thought “a real conversation, and a nice one with someone I’ve only just met at a bar, I’ve heard about this kind of thing!”
As time drew on, I decided I’d probably want to contact him later. I deftly got his phone number and sent him a text message. Win! Maybe we could meet up for dinner sometime, or maybe a coffee or maybe just chat on MSN… or maybe…
He was having similar thoughts.
“You know, it’s really nice to have a normal conversation with a guy at a bar.” he said.
I agreed enthusiastically.
Suddenly his eyes glazed over with that familiar expression and he kissed me, his hand slipping intimately up my thigh.
Now, I was more than a little surprised. To me this qualified as rather forward (and I said so). “I’ve never picked up a guy at a bar before” I said with what I hoped was a confident smile (shut up, I’m sure normal people don’t say that).
Still, I thought to myself, this whole “meeting people at a bar” thing is apparently what normal people get up to. I could try normal, for a change, couldn’t I?
I kissed him back and patted him awkwardly on the knee. I hoped that was just about the right amount of a response to show I was interested.
He disappeared for a cigarette (oh yuck) and we continued the conversation. He went for a cigarette about three times. Every time he kissed me beforehand and every time I kind of wondered whether it would be rude of me to scarper. I decided it would be rude, and possibly quite boring.
As the evening drew on, I started wondering what the etiquette was. Should I assume now that he expected some kind of sex? Should I accept or decline? Should I be the one to offer? Did I even want to offer? Would he be satisfied with a cuddle till daybreak? What would a normal person do?
“So, where are you going after this?” he asked casually
“Home. I’d offer to drive you home but I am a bit drunk… you could come back to my place..?”
He didn’t need to be told twice.
We left together, the barman didn’t bother to hide his knowing smirk.
We walked back home and I chattered away incessantly, a combination of tequila and nervousness, I guess.
“You’re already regretting this, aren’t you?” he asked, I registered that he could quite possibly be voicing his own insecurity rather than reflecting my own.
“Oh, no, no, you’re a nice guy, and you should see the view from my balcony”
We got to the balcony, I said something inane about the harbour and he all but ripped my clothes off.
I guess that bit was nice. I tried to remind myself that normal people apparently do this all the time, I attended to the matter at hand.
Then, a very odd thing happened.
Essentially, he masturbated all over himself, cleaned up, got dressed and left. All in about as much time as it takes to write that sentence.
I woke up that morning feeling a little used and smelling of stale cigarettes.
Is that part of the one-night-stand experience? I don’t know. A friendly text message I sent the next afternoon was met with no response.
Dating can be tough. I’ve met nice charming, loveable, affable, intelligent, attractive people online who seem to be unable to handle going out to dinner, or even a coffee. I’ve had guys cancel on me 5 minutes before a coffee date on account of “not feeling up to it” and now I’ve even experienced meeting an otherwise nice person who can’t seem to function beyond achieving his own orgasm. It doesn’t upset me as much as it used to, but it certainly isn’t easy!