Likes (The Idea Of) Walking In The Rain

Dear Strange Dude:
Thanks, but…

Dear Guy From The Computer Dating Service Who Keeps Messaging Me:

You seem like a nice guy. It even says in your profile that you’re “mature,” which is not a claim many people can honestly make, so mad props to you. Yes, I’m sure we like a lot of the same things, although I have to tell you I don’t really like walking in the rain. I like rain, and the idea of walking in it, but as with many things, the reality differs from the fantasy in important ways.

Fantasy: walking in a light, steady rain, more of a heavy mist, that turns my skin dewy and glowing. Reality: squelching along, my hair plastered to my scalp by drops that splat on me like water balloons, in shoes that will, as soon as they get warm, smell funky.

What I really like is sitting at a table under an awning or on a covered porch, sipping hot tea and reading, alone or with someone who doesn’t interrupt, because he’s reading his own book. I’ve left “splashing in puddles” territory and “I’ve fallen, and I can’t get up!” isn’t far enough away to leave room for romance on slippery surfaces.

Which reminds me, no to the making love on satin sheets.

No to all of it, really. I never did sign up for that online dating service. I took what was advertised as a fun personality test about romance. I’ve been married since before the invention of dirt, and was wondering if there were any romantic notions left in my aging and more than somewhat befuddled brain.

Turns out the answer is “no,” at least as defined by an online dating service. Fancy dinners mean taking more trouble than I care to in order to get dressed, and sitting on uncomfortable furniture. I’d rather slide into a comfy booth at a diner where the waitress calls me “hon” and serves me a good burger, well done. Candlelight means squinting or rooting around in my purse for my glasses.

I suspect that people who serve food in the dark are hiding something. Not that the lighting has to be “interrogation scene in a film noir,” but I do like enough lighting to read the menu and see the person I’m eating with. You only have to have the lights come up and find yourself murmuring fondly into the ear of a total stranger once to learn your lesson.

Fortunately for you, I’m already married, so you don’t have to deal with me. Fortunately for me, I’m married to someone who dislikes dark restaurants and walking in the rain, and does like me.

So you have to stop messaging me. I hope you find someone who likes walking in the rain, candlelit restaurants, and satin sheets as much as you do, although it seems likely you’ll see more of the staff of the hospital ER than each other. Which might work out, come to think of it. You need someone who knows her way around bandages.

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