Being old and married sucks sometimes. I'm only including married in this post because I refuse to blame the following story just on being old.
I'm at Starbucks, having ridden there on my pretty pink cruiser (see previous blog post). My hair is down and comved for once (in writer mode its usually up in a sweaty pony tale secured by a scrunchie I found at the gym). I have make up on and my clothes all match. I am thinking I look almost cute today.
I order a Venti Black Iced Tea Unsweetened (would it kill Starbucks to just make small, medium, and large?). I get my tea, pull out my copy of On The Road, and find a small table near a lovely window. Life is good.
The whole time this is going on I'm very aware of a man watching me. He is short, round, and totally not my type. Ugh, I think. Happy to not be in the dating world. I don't make eye contact with him but I can feel his gaze on me.
Finally, he stands and comes to my table.
"Uh-oh," I think, ready to whip out my ring finger. "He is going to ask me out."
"Excuse me, ma'am," he says. (by the way fellas, never try to seduce a woman by using the word ma'am in your intro). "I couldn't help noticing that you are drinking tea. Is that correct?"
I nod, looking down at my cup to show him that I still had plenty and he didn't need to worry about buying me another. My bladder would give out long before I finished this one. I give him a moment to digest this then reply,"yes, yes I am."
"What kind of tea is it?"
"Just plain black tea."
He pulled a chair from an adjoining table and sat across from me, leaning in on his arms. "I'm a tea lover, too."
"Really?" was all I could come up with. I wasn't used to being propositioned in such a way. Not in a Starbucks during the daytime when people were still sober.
"Yes,' he answered, "And I would love to treat you to a cup."
I lifted my left hand to show him my ring. "I'm so sorry. It's very flattering but..."
He scratched his head. "Your husband doesn't like tea?"
"Oh yes, yes he does. But I'm not sure he'd like it if I drank tea with you." I needed to make this clear to him before he assumed I was one of them Desperate Housewife types. "My husband and I have an exclusive tea-drinking relationship."
"I'm sorry," he said, rising. "I think there's been a mistake. I sell tea." He pulled out a business card that read: Georgio - Tea Importer. His office was two blocks away. "I thought you might want to try some really good shit. This Starbucks crap is way too diluted. One sip of my tea and you won't need to sleep for three days. Look me up if you change your mind."
With that he handed me his card and walked away.
I was sure that every eye in Starbucks was on me, laughing. I had been dissed by the Tea Bag Man.
From now on, I decided, I'm wearing nothing but sweats out of the house. Great, big, baggy ones with holes in the knees. At least then I won't assume that men are hitting on me.
And it will be a pleasant surprise if they do.