Friday, December 21, 2012

'Tis the season for exes to come crawling out of the woodwork

It's that time of year when people take stock of their lives, feel lonely, get sentimental, and contact their long-lost loves. I've seen signs of it all over the place, from my roommate mentioning over breakfast that she'd written a boyfriend she's barely spoken to in two years to headlines in Love Letters like Should she reach out to an ex over the holidays? and Contacting a old love [sic].

Some people do it well, like l'Artista, who sent me a sweet note telling me he's been thinking about me a lot lately. These people express their emotions without letting themselves get carried away by them. Other people do it poorly, such as Leif Ericson, who sent me an impersonal, self-serving, AA-style apology note. Six months after the fact, it was utterly unnecessary, and left me feeling that any connection I ever felt to him was imagined. I didn't reply; or maybe I did. (Gmail is giving me mixed messages about whether or not the reply I crafted was ever sent. But it's the thought that counts, and I didn't *mean* to reply.)

I also got an unexpected message from a long-lost date who I never thought I'd hear from again. (I'm a little bit hesitant to link to old posts about him, because I didn't say anything very positive about him and I want to keep an open mind. But what the hell.) He asked me to give him a second chance. I felt ambivalent about it and wasn't sure how to respond, so I asked some friends what they thought I should do. You know when you get the same exact advice from two of your very best advice-givers that it is really quality advice, so I followed it and requested that he provide me with a reason why I should go out with him again. He replied,

Hi Heathen, In the spring what happened was that I started seeing another girl more seriously right around the time when we went out. I agree I screwed up and should have been more straightforward with you and told you what was going on. I regret and and I'm sorry I ruined your Friday night. 

I think you should give me another chance because I thought we had a really good first date, because I think you're very smart and interesting, because on our date I made you laugh (a lot, as I recall), because I think we have a lot in common, because I think you're cute, because I want to talk more about education policy and French things with you, and because I'd like to spend more time with you. That's more than one reason, but I think they're all good. Have I persuaded you?


I was charmed by this (I like nothing more than a man who likes me!), plus I remembered that he introduced me to one of my favorite music videos of all time, so I agreed. Time will tell if I live to regret this decision -- unless the world ends tonight, of course.

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