My Taster’s Choice Commercial


What twisted webs we weave. I can’t even begin to recount the recent weeks of drama with Mr. Zegna. Actually, I could, but I’ll spare you. Our current status is “technically together.” Translation: I’m on hold. And that’s not a cynical translation. Literally, we have agreed that he may reserve me for a couple of weeks while he gets his head together and decides whether he wants to continue our relationship. I agreed to this because 1) he is mourning the loss of his father; 2) I’ve fallen for him; 3) I have apparently become something of a pushover; and 4) I should be working, not dating, anyway. So, Mr. Zegna and I are “taking a break” from our one-week-old relationship, but have agreed not to date other people. And I am officially in the weirdest dating scenario this side of the Maury Show.

So I’ve been doing my own thing — lots of working, lots of exercising, lots of socializing — trying to forget that he hasn’t called me since we hung up the phone on Tuesday. Actually, I can’t forget that he hasn’t called, so I’ve been trying to remind myself that it’s OK that he hasn’t called because we agreed to him not calling b/c he needs this time to sort himself out. *deep breath* and that’s a good idea because he’s basically a mess and personally, I have no interest in him making rash decisions when he’s a mess, especially if those decisions involve me. *deep breath* not that I’m obsessing, of course, because I have my own life filled with lots of wonderful, interesting, important things that are completely fulfilling, even and especially in the absence of Mr. Zegna. *deep breath*

Anyway, like I said, doing my own thing … working on some stuff in Juan Valdez, Colombia’s answer to Starbucks. But instead of working, I’m really asking my friend across the table whether she really, really thinks I should take Mr. Lead Singer Man up on his month-old drink offer. When I initially turned him down, I said that I might need a raincheck; she thinks I should call, but I don’t want to do Mr. Zegna dirty. Sure, I feel a little taken for granted, a little rejected, a little “what the fuck,” but I know that he’s in a Hard Place. Still, how many guys am I going to pass up before Mr. Zegna finally settles on a decidedly indecisive, “I want this, but I’m not ready for it right now”? Because if he really wanted me, I’m not convinced that he’d be so conflicted.

But like I said, I’m not obsessing.

Back to Juan Valdez. Day turns to night, my friend leaves, and I’m tweaked out on large lattes. As a side note, I like that Juan Valdez still uses the unassuming “small-medium-large” system. Nothing makes me feel more like a trained poodle than ordering my drink size in a foreign language. This is especially so because the tall-grande-venti thing makes no sense; it’s essentially “large” (in English, Pac-NW vernacular), “large” (in Italian), and “20 oz” (also in Italian, also … large). But I digress. Anyway, there is a guy sitting at the table behind where my friend had been sitting. We’ll call him, “Mr. Valdez.” He’s wearing designer black frames (2 Points) and has been there as long as I have, studying something that looks business-y (4 Points). He’s definitely cute — medium brown hair, ice blue eyes, full lips (4 Points). We make eye contact. I break it. I always break it. He gets up to use the restroom. “Would you mind … looking at my things?” I assume this means he wants me to watch his stuff while he’s in the bathroom; another interpretation might be inappropriate. “Sure,” I said with a smile (always with a smile. It’s my excuse for being lazy about making conversation; at 1000 words per smile, you don’t have to talk too much.). I see that he is tall (3 Points) and well-dressed (4 Points). He stood on line for the bathroom, less than a foot from my table (near the bathroom + access to electrical outlet = prime coffeehouse real estate, in case you didn’t know) and proceeded to make a phone call. He spoke with an accent (1 Point). When he returned to his seat, he thanked me. “Your welcome,” I said, again with a smile. Our conversation ended there. I’m not an extrovert, not to mention Mr. Zegna and I are technically together until he figures out that he doesn’t want to be together, so I shouldn’t be striking up conversations with strange attractive men with accents.

The eye contact persists. I persist in breaking it. “It is cold in here, isn’t it?” he asks me from his table. “Yeah … it’s cold, then hot, then cold. I think they’re not using this as much as they should today,” I said, gesturing toward the heater that occupied the space between our tables and the floor-to-ceiling windows. He agreed and we exchanged awkward smiles. I continued working. And did I mention that it was awkward? Every now and then he looked up at me from his books as I thought, “I can feel you looking at me. I know you want to talk to me. Just start talking if you want to talk.” As I pretended to work unaffected, it dawned on me that I wanted him to talk to me, which I knew because the prolonged interruption didn’t annoy me. Fuck it. “What are you studying?” There, I said something. He looked relieved. He was studying for the CFA (7 Points), lives in Astoria (-5 Points), works for Bloomberg (5 Points — I’m sure the position is good), is from El Salvador (5 Points), and was just transferred to New York from Tokyo (500 Points — jetsetting is hot). More than all of that, though, he seemed like a normal, nice, cool guy (countless Points). “Will you watch my stuff for a minute while I …” I pointed toward the restroom and smiled. When I returned, he asked me out for coffee and we exchanged numbers.

At the end of the day, after all that non-obsessing about Mr. Zegna and whether or not to call Mr. Lead Singer Man (who I may call yet), Mr. Valdez falls into my lap. And my lap likes it (don’t be dirty). So that, my friends, is how I met Mr. Valdez, AKA Mr. Zegna from El Salvador. Which brings me to my question of the day: Do you ever feel like you’re living in a f’d up Taster’s Choice commercial? Because sometimes I feel like I am.

3 Responses to “My Taster’s Choice Commercial”

  1. 1 YM

    Keep collecting those phone numbers. It never hurts to be prepared.

  2. “And I am officially in the weirdest dating scenario this side of the Mason-Dixon.”

    I was appalled by this quote Samantha. I believe you intended it as a derogatory assault in Southerners, and their copulatory (and marital) mate selections. I am a tried and true Southern boy, and I took great offense to your stereotypical reference. As a East coast elitist, I know that your views are shaped by those around you, and the literature and media that you absorb, but please do a little more research into the matter before you paint with such a broad brush. At time I request that offending blog content be removed, but since this is a minor infraction (due to the insignificance of the quote in relation to the entire post) I will let you slide with only a warning.

    Peace be upon you.

  3. 3 Queen Samantha

    Thank you for letting me slide, Johnny. I apologize for my derogatory statement. Truth be told, I mostly enjoyed the parts of the South that I have visited and found the people to be warm, hospitable, and no more inclined towards bizarre dating scenarios than those I know in other parts of the country.

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