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Regrets, I've had a few
August 3, 2012 1:56 PM   Subscribe

Looking for a comment thread that I believe may have originated at Reddit and was linked here: stories from men talking about how they (often painfully) missed clues from women who were interested in them, and the agony and regret when they realized what was actually happening at a later date. Thanks!
posted by Conrad Cornelius o'Donald o'Dell to MetaFilter-Related at 1:56 PM (40 comments total) 13 users marked this as a favorite

Wow, you just described my whole life.

Up to meeting my wife, that is. Love ya, honey!
posted by m@f at 2:57 PM on August 3, 2012 [3 favorites]


It wasn't until I was an adult that I realized how many of my teachers had been hitting on me.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 3:26 PM on August 3, 2012 [3 favorites]


This was a real thread and I remember reading it. But I can't seem to find it.
posted by Diablevert at 3:37 PM on August 3, 2012


What a coincidence. For some reason, I thought back to the time that a young lady asked if she knew me from somewhere. I was alone at a concert, 4 hours from home, and told her no. She said, "Are you sure?" and again I said no. She walked back into the crowd, and it wasn't until a few days later that I realized she was trying to start a conversation.
posted by filthy light thief at 3:51 PM on August 3, 2012


And there was the time that a lice lass offered to buy me a drink, and I asked for a mudslide. She was nice enough to chat a bit, but she, too, left for less daft company.
posted by filthy light thief at 3:54 PM on August 3, 2012 [2 favorites]


I'd love to read this. Also, I'd love to read the same sort of stories from women. Also also, I'd really REALLY love to hear the other side of the story from the regretee.... "I told him about my Brazilian wax and the dumbass just nodded and walked away. Shame, I really liked that guy. Anyhow, later that night, I met Frank..."
posted by LordSludge at 3:58 PM on August 3, 2012 [1 favorite]


filthy light thief: "lice lass"

There are other Phthiraptera in the sea...
posted by m@f at 3:59 PM on August 3, 2012 [6 favorites]


God, this is the one regret of young maxwelton. I'd have a lot of holes if 45-year-old me went back and shot dense young maxwelton every time he fucked up.
posted by maxwelton at 4:11 PM on August 3, 2012 [5 favorites]


Isn't Lice Lass an arch-enemy of Squirrel Girl?
posted by GenjiandProust at 4:26 PM on August 3, 2012 [4 favorites]


A woman came up to me at a wedding the other day and asked me if I was Sam Rockwell - which I deeply approved of.

Anyway, we got to talking and it turned out that both our kids have the same deeply unusual condition for the same incredibly rare reason. This has never happened before or since and so we spent the night talking and crying and laughing with our partners.

Felt good!
posted by Jofus at 4:32 PM on August 3, 2012


Need a Greasemonkey script that adds "Of course, I was very drunk" to the end of all my posts.
posted by Jofus at 4:34 PM on August 3, 2012 [9 favorites]


(There should be a class available in middle school called "Social Awareness for Dummies". Just like the sex-education class in The Meaning of Life people would be brought in to demonstrate What People Look Like When They're Interested.

"See how she's 'open', facing the person she's talking to, arms not crossed, laughing, touching her hair, occasionally touching her conversation partner's arm? That's good! See how he's staring around the room, answering in monosyllables, looking bored, and maintaining a healthy distance? That's bad!"

I mean, there are a lot of clueless people out there who don't know this stuff instinctively, and unless a partner is very aggressive may not realize opportunity is knocking.

It could be paired with "If You're Shy--Avoid Hopeless Crushes!" This class would teach a couple of points:

* The minute you feel yourself falling for someone in that crush-esque way, ask them out!
* If they say no, move on!

That would be the first day's lesson. The remainder of the quarter would be everyone asking everyone else out in front of the group, with the caveat that no one was allowed to say yes. After each ask, the rest of the class would fill out an anonymous form: "How did you feel about _____ asking out _____? a) The asker totally got burned. b) The askee totally missed out. c) Why would I even give a shit?" I suspect A & B would be equal, and C would be overwhelming--and maybe once the young shy person realizes the world isn't judging you on whether you succeed or not, you won't make it the end of the world, especially if they haven't already fallen hopelessly for that person.

Projects in both classes would include analyzing Hollywood rom-coms for creepiness, and comparing how realistic the men and women in film and magazines are compared to the people you see in real life.)
posted by maxwelton at 4:35 PM on August 3, 2012 [50 favorites]


This was a real thread and I remember reading it. But I can't seem to find it.

It rings a bell for me, too. Unless I am just remembering all the times this happened to me?
posted by Forktine at 4:53 PM on August 3, 2012


What a coincidence. For some reason, I thought back to the time that a young lady asked if she knew me from somewhere. I was alone at a concert, 4 hours from home, and told her no. She said, "Are you sure?" and again I said no. She walked back into the crowd, and it wasn't until a few days later that I realized she was trying to start a conversation.

Here is the sound this thread makes:

Aaaaaaauuuuuuuuuuggggggggggggghhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh
posted by junco at 5:29 PM on August 3, 2012 [2 favorites]


I'm breaking out in a cold sweat just thinking about this. No! How could I have been so stupid! Never bring this up again.
posted by Justinian at 6:04 PM on August 3, 2012 [7 favorites]


Found it! Found it! I fucking found it!

The reddit thread, at least. I am almost sure it was linked here somewhere though, because I very rarely read reddit and that was like the first extended thread I can remember reading on it.

It must have been in the comments, though, because putting the link into the blue's post preview turns up nothing.
posted by Diablevert at 7:17 PM on August 3, 2012 [13 favorites]


That reddit thread is the most painful thing ever.
posted by Elementary Penguin at 7:35 PM on August 3, 2012


Found the comment, by removing the extra 20 from the URL, and pasting it into search.
posted by filthy light thief at 7:38 PM on August 3, 2012 [1 favorite]


Found it! Found it! I fucking found it!

I'm really starting to see the beauty in "wanna fuck?"
posted by DarlingBri at 8:56 PM on August 3, 2012 [4 favorites]


I have found my people!
posted by M Edward at 10:28 PM on August 3, 2012 [2 favorites]


...stories from men talking about how they (often painfully) missed clues from women who were interested in them

That's never happened to me. At least I don't think it has. Hang on... well, shit.
posted by Decani at 10:30 PM on August 3, 2012 [1 favorite]


Oh God... first comment on the reddit thread is a mighty, mighty facepalmer. I think I'm going to enjoy this. And by "enjoy this" I mean "groan in shared pain a lot".

Her: So this girl I know likes this guy I know but he's been oblivious to all of her signals, so what does she have to do to tell him she likes him?
Me: I don't know, just tell him she likes him?
Her: Like, "I like you?" Just like that?
Me: Yeah, like that.
Her: I like you.
Me: Yeah, tell her to tell him that, and she'll be all set.
pause
Her: ...I like you.
Me: Yup, you've got it... was there anything else?

posted by Decani at 10:33 PM on August 3, 2012 [15 favorites]


Yes, Diablevert has it! Absolutely the right thread. Thank you so much! (for letting me read such agonizing stories yet again!)
posted by Conrad Cornelius o'Donald o'Dell at 12:31 AM on August 4, 2012


The reddit thread is a thing of beauty - the Dragonball Z tangent midway through is what pushes it over the edge.
posted by Dr Dracator at 12:33 AM on August 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


Oh, but hopeless crushes are so delicious!
posted by charmcityblues at 7:20 AM on August 4, 2012


This thread was a great counter to the rape thread.
posted by vegartanipla at 9:31 AM on August 4, 2012


DarlingBri: "I'm really starting to see the beauty in "wanna fuck?""

By no means is this guaranteed to work. I'd rather not explain how I know this.
posted by vanar sena at 9:41 AM on August 4, 2012


Here's the inverse version! What hints have you given a guy that went straight over his head.
posted by Phire at 9:42 AM on August 4, 2012 [3 favorites]


Having read most of that thread now, though, warning that it turns extremely frustrating and derail-y, complete with "we don't make moves because false rape accusations". There are some good stories in there, but prepare to scroll.
posted by Phire at 9:51 AM on August 4, 2012


Also, well done by filthy light thief to find the comment where it was posted. That AskMe thread looks fairly familiar, so I'm guessing that must be where I saw the Reddit thread.
posted by Conrad Cornelius o'Donald o'Dell at 10:12 AM on August 4, 2012


Having read most of that thread now, though, warning that it turns extremely frustrating and derail-y, complete with "we don't make moves because false rape accusations"...
posted by Phire at 5:51 PM
on August 4

And the response from one redditor to the "false rape accusations" angle was "Yea it's not fair, whatever". Which is why that will continue to be a problem. The communication of desire between the sexes is a bloody fucking pain, for many of us, in both directions. It does not help to be hand-wavily dismissive about that.
posted by Decani at 2:54 PM on August 4, 2012


Metafilter did this to me once, or helped me do this to myself. Lovely girl I'd just met was around our (shared 5 bedroom house) and asked, repeatedly, whether she could stay over as it was getting late.

As I had just found some really awesome article, my only replies were, "Well, the train doesn't close down for ages yet" and "If you want, you're totally welcome to crash on the couch if you catch time running away from you."

So, yeah, I suppose this is a good place for aaaaaaauuuuuuuuuuugggggggghhhhhhhh
posted by Slackermagee at 4:33 PM on August 4, 2012


During my four years in college, exactly one person (of the correct gender) expressed interest in me. Although we had a nice little fling, I stumbled through those four years feeling lonely and undateable (not helped by the fact that I went to a tiny college in a tiny homophobic southern city).

The week before I graduated, no fewer than three ridiculously-hot people confessed that they had feelings for me. Two were reciprocal, and I wouldn't have said no to the third. Oh, for fuck sake.

Addendum: This gave me some much-needed confidence, and I've learned to be very straightforward with the people that I'm interested in if they're not picking up on my cues. Rejection's no fun, but it's much better than wondering about what could have been. This strategy has worked pretty well for me. It got better.
posted by schmod at 4:46 PM on August 4, 2012 [3 favorites]


When I was in my early twenties and working retail, a co-worker I barely knew from the night shift gave me a mix tape. I thought "hey awesome, a mix tape." It wasn't until a friend pointed out a few years later that she may have been "interested" in me.
posted by drezdn at 6:48 PM on August 4, 2012


Having read most of that thread now, though, warning that it turns extremely frustrating and derail-y

All Reddit threads are derail-y if you try to read them through from start to finish like Metafilter threads. The consequence of their nested sub-threaded system is that conversations disappear into black holes marked with + signs and "click to read more" notices. As a result there's no community disapproval of wild tangents and irrelevant digressions, because if you don't want to read them you don't have to. The expected way of reading Reddit is to skip through the top-rated top-level comments and maybe a few of their immediate responses and ignore any continuing conversations.

This is why I am really glad MetaFilter does not have nested sub-threads ... it changes the site culture.
posted by Harvey Kilobit at 10:12 PM on August 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


I was flying first class while wearing a tuxedo when a svelt Russian flight attendant bent over and asked me if there was anything she could do to make me more comfortable. I had just finished a top secret mission so I asked for another pillow. She reached into my pants, made eye contact with me, and said, are you sure there isn't anything else? I said nyet.

After reading all these exaggerated stories on reddit, now I realize I missed something too!
posted by allen.spaulding at 1:37 AM on August 5, 2012 [2 favorites]


One time, a girl kissed me on a school bus without warning and told me that I could get off at her stop and we could walk to her house because her parents weren't home. I said no because I was going to miss dragonball z

The dragonball z tangent is indeed a thing of beauty!

Although I did ick when I saw the first post called women 'females'. Gentlemen, if you don't want to sound like aliens from the planet Misogynon, you may want to give that terminology a miss.
posted by winna at 10:30 AM on August 5, 2012 [5 favorites]


Reading through the Reddit thread, I discovered some missed opportunities I may have missed, that I wasn't even aware of in the previous MetaFilter thread. Including some that are less than two years old. Apparently I will never learn.
posted by davejay at 3:51 PM on August 5, 2012


phire: Here's the inverse version! What hints have you given a guy that went straight over his head.

I really liked this point from that thread:
This is an example of an interesting strategy in game theory. In these types of interactions the party making the proposal can "win" if the proposal is accepted, or "lose" if the proposal is rejected, usually by "losing face." From the offeree's perspective, if he is under other pressures to not accept such an offer, then it will be harder for him to agree to an outright proposal.

Thus the offerer frames the proposal in a coy, ambiguous way such that the offeree can refuse without causing the offerer to lose face, and so that the offeree can accept without having to admit he was offered.
...
The trade off is that the offer might not be understood, as happened in your case. But this added risk is outweighed by the reduction of the risk associated with the offer being rejected.

Stephen Pinker's "The Stuff of Thought" has a very interesting chapter on this.
Essentially, if a guy comes on "too strong", too directly, he risks being branded a "creeper" or ruining a friendship. If a girl comes on too strong, she risks being branded a "slut". Wounded pride and awkwardness in either case.

So by being ambiguous, you avoid that risk... at the cost of having your signals missed, even when you're both crushing hard on each other. Gah!
posted by LordSludge at 4:04 PM on August 5, 2012 [2 favorites]


Oh, storytime. There's three I can think of off the top of my head.

One was a girl in high school who every day told me she wanted to go out with me and every day I gently laughed, thinking this was some bizarre shared private joke we were doing, just our little comedy routine. Nope. She was pretty cute.

Another one was a girl who was totally my type and always made a point of dropping whatever she was doing or whoever she was talking to to come over and say hi and give me a big hug or rub my neck or otherwise show me a lot of affection, physical and verbal, always seemed real interested in me and what I had to say far beyond what I'd consider appropriate for friendship-level. It was years later when I sat up in bed one night and went "Son of a BITCH!" She was pretty cute, too.

Finally, there was the time I was on an international flight to Amsterdam. I'd scored a sweet bulkhead seat, which meant I was sitting facing the very cute stewardess in her jump seat for a long flight and she was very interested in selling me on Amsterdam and telling me how beautiful it was and I should make sure to give her a call when I was there and she would show me around the city and she knew all these great places to go and she had a lovely flat just big enough for two people. I smiled and chatted politely. And it only clicked when I'd gotten off the plane and past security and onto the plane to my final destination.

What I'm saying is in the movie version of my life, the cable girl will really just fix the cable.
posted by Ghostride The Whip at 11:24 PM on August 5, 2012 [3 favorites]


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