The thing with dating guys who work in PR is that when they tell me they’re busy, I’m inclined to believe them, given the manic pace at which my days generally run. So I wasn’t too worried that it had been a week since I’d seen Sports Nut: I took his busy schedule at face value, and was looking forward to the possibility of catching up with him for a quick lunch in the middle of the madness before I headed to the beautiful ‘Burgh for a long weekend.
My phone went one evening as I was sitting on the train home.
“Hey you, how’s your day been?”
There was some light chatter about days, colleagues, early mornings and apologies for going a bit quiet, but work had been really busy.
“But there is something else as well that I’ve been meaning to talk to you about.”
I felt a slight knot form.
“I had a call from my ex, and we, well, we never really finished things, and she wants us to give it another go, so...”
My heart fell into my stomach.
“I’m really sorry – the past few weeks have been great fun, but...”
In shock, surrounded by fellow commuters, all I could utter was, “Oh.”
“I mean, my head’s in a really weird place, and...”
And at that point, I don’t really know what else he said because I couldn’t really hear him any more.
Thankfully, once I was in the privacy of my own home, I didn’t have to bite the inside of my lip to stop the stinging, angry tears as I called The Metrosexual.
“So, what? I don’t get it? He has a girlfriend?!”
“Apparently so. Or, at least, an ex, with whom things don’t appear to be particularly ex-like.”
“JESUS. What a twat.” I love my friends. They do moral indignation when I don’t feel like it. “And he didn’t tell you?”
I chuckled wanly, not having the energy nor the inclination for rage, and thinking back to our first date. “Not only did he not tell me, Met, I distinctly remember asking him, over manchego and quince, because of my previous luck with men, whether he was a) straight, and b) single.”
“And on our last date, we had a discussion about previous indiscretions; he just apparently didn’t think a current situation worth mentioning. I wouldn't have minded if he'd explained there was a sticky situation - I'd just rather make my decisions based on all the information.”
“So what explanation did he give?”
“He didn’t really, Met, and he’d caught me on a train full of people. I was hardly going to have the conversation, was I?”
There was a pause.
“Jeez, hon, how do you pick ‘em?”
“Don’t know. Thought I was doing okay with this one.” I took a deep breath as I felt the tears start to prickle.
“And you had no idea there was anyone else in the picture?”
“God. Shit, I don’t know what else to tell you. We’re all shits.” He paused. “You liked this one, didn’t you?”
Eyes wet, I nodded at the phone.
"Well, if it had to happen, better that it happened now than six months down the line."
Ten minutes and some platitudes about kissing frogs later, I put down the phone, to find a message from the Nut.
Listen, I honestly thought it was cut and dry. Maybe I’ve been a bit naive. I apologise for catching you in the crossfire.
Naive’s not necessarily the word I’d have chosen. But then, we apparently had different definitions of ‘single’, too.