The moment he said no I already knew; I already knew it was the last time I’ll see him. The truth is that I don’t respect people who break their promises. He promised me that we will host a Gatsby apartment party for Christmas where both our friends could get to know each other. Now he was backing off; telling me to host some boring Christmas party where we would all hang Christmas ornaments on his Christmas three. Seriously, what kind of fifty-year-old throws these kinds of sleep walking parties? From that moment, I understood that I was trying to bring life into a boring man and as a very close friend once had told me; he was at a point of no return.

Of course, I already invited the whole crew; I had to painfully cancel that afternoon after brunch. This guy was too old and too stuck in his rancid manners to be able to understand a woman like me. He thought  that wearing cool socks, shoes and colorful reading glasses could blindside people. I knew exactly his kinds, who needs a meek woman to reign. I am alive and I certainly know what I want. And a guy whose manners are straight from a dismal eternal single fifty-year old guide book wasn’t something that I wanted.

Gloom scares me, just like a vampire is afraid of a cross. I absolutely dislike being bored and even more so boring people. There is a difference between enjoying the moment and keeping quiet to enjoy the time, to just be. Then there is being thoroughly bored; hanging out with this guy was leaning more towards that. I fought over my thoughts so many times and tried, but never has he returned the favor and understood the violence I inflicted on my mind, body and soul. He was in my opinion, a very uninteresting person.

Sometimes, I would try to imagine him with his friends and I could only gather chaos in my mind. It was a scenario of almost like seeing a group of depressed people comparing their depression level.

My pink suede Sophia Webster shoe, with a woven orange butterfly, predicted all that. We’d met for the first time at a nice wine bar on the upper west side. For some reason, during the conversation, the heel of my right shoe came out. What an embarrassment! Honestly, I was more pissed that, my brand new four hundred dollars shoe needed repair after only one week. When it was time to go and the check was placed on the table, the fifty year old started complaining and stated that he should have invited me to his apartment instead, where we could have drunk a nice bottle of wine for that same price. Really? In my face, just like that. He was unfamiliar on how to treat a woman, apparently. Telling me such thing on a first date? From there, I already knew, my shoe was right. It was a signal for me not to continue that odyssey. I have so much faith in human kind that my gullibility and naivete  always betrays me.

I decided somehow to give him a chance anyway. I was only a few weeks in the hang out phase with him when I had an eye-opening experience on his senile bachelor manners. He invited me for a drink and again when the bill came about ninny-six dollars, I had to pay it. He just casually told me he’ll get the  check the next time we go out. To top it all, before we left the place, he had the guts to ask me if I wanted to spend the night with him!! I declined politely but again my brain was roaming with all its capacity trying to comprehend the level of pertinence of that individual. But weeks were passing by and every time it was the same thing. At that point, the stingy geriatric behavior of that man amused me so much that I was into going out with him clearly for a good laugh and a great story to tell. Involuntarily,  he turned himself into my study subject. Not only that, one day he had the audacity to demand  that I pay  the supper  that he of course invited me to have with him, because he had paid  the movie tickets. I was laughing so hard within, rolling on the floor in my head, trying to understand that man. He behaved like a blind man in a museum. I honestly felt bad for him; that’s when I understood the reason of his solid bachelor status. The man was parsimonious at a large extent. He held a great job as a foreign diplomat for one of the greatest countries. He lived in a lavish upper west side apartment, traveled all over the world, never really had a serious relationship, and was still very single at fifty. He probably thought that I was one of those desperate young black girls looking for a breakthrough in high society and was willing to do whatever it takes just to be seen in public with him. I just can’t imagine any possible other scenario. Or was he a serial dater?

Ever since, that shoe incident I promised myself to always listen to my Sophia Webster shoes. They can predict more than a cheap date…, but that’s another story.

By: Marie Caroline Charles