Things & People Are Not What They Seem

On paper, at least, everything pointed to an ideal match.  He was a guy I met on the internet.  We exchanged several emails and he exhibited good writing skills and manners in them.  He was tall and I felt attracted to his photos.  He readily agreed to meet for coffee, so I could only assume that he was attracted to me to some extent.  I got extra excited because he mentioned that he was working on a “design” at home that afternoon, and that this work was his job.  Well, I’m an artist too, a graphic designer amongst other things, so I thought maybe we might have several sensibilities in common and interesting things to talk about.  Even more promising, he mentioned a possible date at a local summer movie series, which shows older movies on an enormous screen at the big downtown theater.  Having gone to film school, I learned years ago how to analyze and enjoy films, especially older films, on a deeper level.  So, while simultaneously attempting to keep my enthusiasm in check, I looked forward to his arrival.

He showed up on time, ready to give me his attention, and we sat down at the table.  So far so good, right?  Wrong.

I tried, I really did, and I believe that he tried in his own way.  But nothing was what it, at first, appeared to be.  He may be one of those guys who thinks that a conversation is talking–just talking.  Period.  About anything.  No matter how unbelievably boring and irrelevant.  Some highlights include what he had for breakfast, what he had for dinner, what he had for breakfast again, well you get the idea.  During the breakfast portions of the conversation, I learned that he goes to McDonald’s every morning.  Really?  McDonald’s?  I mean I just didn’t thing grown gay men went to McDonald’s anymore.  Oops #1 on my part.  I think I got into the habit of assuming that all gay men are as concerned about their health, diet, and longevity as I am.  Oh well, at least he had a consistent daily routine.

Then I was regaled with a variety of snippets regarding his relationship with his ex.  As the snarling negativity and hateful details started to come through, I tried to be thankful that this person felt so comfortable talking to me.  But that’s the problem, isn’t it?  People with too few healthy boundaries feel way TOO comfortable opening up to a complete stranger…  I found myself hoping that he was a gifted artist, had an enormous dick, or both.

Finally we got to the design part.  Or, at least, what he considered to be his design career.  He “designed” jewelry, meaning that he bought a variety of precious items from around the world that real artists created, and then proceeded to hire real jewelers to put them together.  He then sold the finished pieces, for many thousands of dollars, to his wealthy customers who had no taste.

So, ultimately, he wasn’t an artist or designer at all in my opinion.  And we had nothing in common in this critical regard.  I asked to see some of his pieces.  I showed him some of mine, with mixed reactions, so I wanted to know exactly who I was dealing with on the artistic front.  Here’s how it went as we looked at photos of his jewelry “designs”.

Me:  Cool.  Is that beautiful design in mother-of-pearl?  Did you carve it yourself?

Him:  No, I bought those from artisans in Malaysia.

Me:  Wow.  Did you design the top part of that earring?

Him:  No, those are old French diamond watchbands.

Me:  Neat.  Are those natural pearls on that necklace?

Him:  No, those are natural pearls from inside the oyster shell.

Me (thinking):  Um…what?

Oops #2:  thinking that artists who earn a living at it are good at art.  I mean, kudos to this guy for earning a living as a designer who doesn’t actually design anything.  It’s fascinating.  I have learned some valuable information from this experience:  earning a living at something and being a real artist and designer are two entirely separate skill sets.  I haven’t earned a living salary at my art yet, but I know that I will.  I actually have talent to boot.  What an innovation!

Please forgive the sarcasm.  But I was hoping for a better connection with this guy.  Good gay relations require far more skills and common ground than I realized.  {>^<V}

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