Casting WIDE the net

Not to get too much into my personal life, but I can count on one hand how many serious boyfriends I have had in my life. Heck, I don't even need the thumb. I would like to think this was because I was too picky. No, that isn't right. Not picky. I was too discerning.

But I have to say that I was always curious about these people who had awfully short shelf lives. They were, for all intents and purposes, the dark chocolate on an aisle full of milk chocolate. The first person walking down the row was going to snatch that candy bar and not take a second look at the pathetic milky ways. Oh, good grief, I sound bitter, don't I? But how could I be when everybody knows that it's the freakin' dark chocolate that tends to taste bitter. One moment please while I go visit the candy dish....

Ah, that's better. For some reason, I had some hankering for some of my Fair Trade Divine 70% Cocoa chocolate bars.

Well anyway, my point before I got mired down in Candyland was I knew girls and, later, women who always had a boyfriend. If they broke up with someone, within the week, they had someone else. Or, most likely they had dumped the current one because they already had their sights set on another.
They treated their beaus so horribly, and yet there was always another one standing in line. I did not get it. I think I get it now though.

My epiphany came when I dialed a wrong number last week. "Is Jennifer there?" I asked when someone answered. (Okay, there's a whole other story as to why I was calling myself, but suffice to say it had to do with a few senators from the Magnolia state and curiosity as to why they would be telephoning me in Kentucky. Basically, I was calling my old number to see if I would answer because somehow our Mississippi calls were being forwarded). Ouch, that almost hurt to think about.

All right. So, I dialed the right number, but I got the wrong person. It wasn't me. It was some guy. And, no, he didn't know Jennifer. Did he ever get calls for Jennifer? I asked, because this used to be her number. I had this on good authority.

No, he didn't get calls for Jennifer.


"What's YOUR name?" he asked. He emphasized "your" in such a way that I got his message. It was brilliant. He was brilliant.

I was the dark chocolate.

And the poor sucker was so good at casting wide his social net that he'd even try to get to know some idiot who had called the wrong number. The really sad thing was he didn't even know how bad it really was. I wasn't even calling the wrong number. I was calling myself. I wanted to know if I would answer, or at the very least, get a busy signal. Does one really want to begin a relationship with someone who he thinks cannot correctly find seven numbers on a telephone? Whereas in my younger years, my expectations were too high, this guy obviously has expectations which deem acceptable any female who is 1) breathing, 2) can speak, 3) may or may not be able to work simple machinery.

Finally! At 38, I was the dark chocolate!! However, this dark chocolate was also happily married and so completely off the shelf that even the expiration date was too faded to read.

"Not available," I answered.

And then it hit me (after I congratulated myself on my CLEVER answer!).

If I had called myself, say, twenty years ago before I was happily involved with my spouse, and if the chocolate loving bone-headed fisherman had asked me in his suggestive way what my name was, I would have had the same reaction.

So not available, dude!

As if I would want to meet a guy who tries to hit on someone who dialed a wrong number! YUCK!

I just wanted to say to him, "Mister, please! Can you please develop some standards? I could be a total dog here!"

OH! I GET IT! That's why I sat home on Friday nights watching "Night Rider" and "The Powers of Matthew Starr" those many years ago with no love interest any where on the horizon. Instead of batting my eyes and giggling at the clever wide-net caster, I rolled my eyes at his audacity, hung up the phone, and died laughing with my girlfriends. Maybe we might even have called him back to see if he would ask my best girlfriend what HER name was. Maybe we'd even set up a date to meet him out at Coleman Hill. "We'll be in the little red sunbird, wink, wink."

Then we'd hole up in the dorm all night and wonder how long Mr. Telephone waited for us to show up.

That'd teach him to answer MY phone when I'm trying to call myself.