Hot or not?

Joey Garcia

This guy at work always flirts with me. Co-workers tease us about how he says “Hey, beautiful” every time he sees me and compliments me on how smart I am and what I accomplish. He and I talk every day, and sometimes we even fake-argue about stuff. Once when that happened, I actually got mad, and he made a point of checking on me and making sure I was OK. He and some of the other guys were in the lunchroom talking about who’s hot at work. I was nearby and could hear them. He didn’t name me, and it bothers me more than I like to admit.

“Hot” is not “beautiful.” “Hot” translates to “I want to do her,” and “beautiful” means “I’m in awe of the exquisiteness of her presence and appearance.” A beautiful person can certainly radiate the kind of sexual energy that inspires lust. In fact, a lot of beautiful people are driven by career choices to cultivate their sex appeal. On the other hand, some people who cultivate their “hotness” are offended when strangers only want to know that hot body, and not the accompanying mind, heart or soul.

That said, why are you bothered? You enjoy a classic work-based pseudo-romance. The only problem is your expectation that flirting should lead to something more. Remove that idea. What remains is the tedium of a workday broken up by sassy little conversations. If you want the interactions to mean more, dive below the superficial chats into your feelings about what is happening in your life and in the world. Or invite him out for coffee, a walk in the park or dinner. That way you can determine if the chemistry is real, or if he’s just using you to cultivate a reputation at work.

I’ve been seeing this guy three times a week. When we met, he said he had a lot going on and just wanted to have some fun. He lives with his parents, is divorced and has his 3-year-old daughter half-time. We’ve been intimate, talked about going on a little weekend trip, and I’ve met his parents. I’ve also hung out with him and his daughter. I told him that I want a relationship. He says no. How do I get him to see that we are in a relationship just without a commitment?

This man was honest with you from the beginning: He just wants to have fun. Why didn’t you believe him? Yes, in Hollywood films and on the Hallmark Channel, one character breaks through another’s resistance to romance. In real life, this happens, too, but as an exception, not a rule. So, accept the relationship you are in as is. Or, end the relationship with no strings attached (no sending text messages to say hi and check on him, etc.), and date someone who shares your commitment destination.

I met a gorgeous guy through an online dating site. After we emailed back and forth, he invited me to his comedy show. I went with friends, we had a blast and we hung out with him after the show. He sent friend requests to all of us but messaged me saying he hoped to see me soon. A week later, he sent a “Thinking of you” text. I responded, asking to get together, but got no response. Then yesterday, I got an invitation to his upcoming comedy show. I’ve seen him on the dating site, but he has not contacted me to go out. What’s going on?

Marketing. Some entertainers (yes, including those in the “adult” category) use online dating sites to troll for customers, not potential soul mates. If you’re looking for a date, keep searching.

Meditation of the week
“You don't have to be cruel to bend the arc of history toward justice,” said the Very Rev. Brian Baker, dean of Trinity Episcopal Cathedral, at a recent screening of God Loves Uganda. The powerful documentary shows American evangelicals exporting bigotry to Africa in the guise of fundamentalist Christian values, and pushing Uganda to consider the death penalty for gays and lesbians. Is that what Jesus would do?

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