I felt so naive when I realised it.
Some years ago, I briefly dated an alcoholic/obsessive compulsive. He was fun, drinking was the new past-time and only now do I realise how serious his problems with alcohol were (I really hope it’s “were” – I saw him a couple years ago and he looked healthy). He had other issues as well but I was willing to overlook them. For example, he would properly fold my clothes for me when I stayed at his house. That might not sound like a big deal, but to me it was one of a few big honkin’ warning signs. Who folds their lover’s clothes? It was just weird.
Anyhoo, I blew past the caution signs because I liked him and we had fun. So one night, one of the last times I ever saw him, I showed up at his house for a night out wearing a hideous purple denim jacket. Really, it *WAS* haute couture’s top traitor, there’s no doubt. I should have lost my value village privileges for life.
So suddenly we weren’t going out on a date anymore. He invited me in and we ended up watching some Michael Jackson documentary on TV instead of going out for dinner. In recent years it’s dawned on me that it was because of my jacket. He was a meticulous, well-dressed guy (probably a Virgo) and I’m sure he was embarrassed to be seen with me in that jacket.
It had to be the jacket… How can you go from a dinner date to watching TV in less than 3.2 seconds? I’ve replayed that moment in my mind a few times now, the moment when he did the head-to-toe and suggested we stay in. It’s so clear to me now, the jacket made him do it. Why wasn’t it then?
And what would I have done had I realised it then? I’m sure I would have ditched the jacket. Dumb, I know. So in a way I’m glad I didn’t catch the rejection until now. And I also hope his character has strengthened since then. It was just a jacket, albeit unsightly.
AND at least I *KNOW* I didn’t look as greasy as Chet from Something Awful.