A new look at my go-to guy

Ronda Rich's picture

He’s my “go to” guy. He’s the one when all other romantic dalliances nose dive, he’s there to hear the dismal stories and lend a sympathetic ear.

And lest you think poorly of me for that, just know that I am his “go to” girl. When his own dalliances dive, I am there to lend an ear as well, though my ear tends to be more amused than sympathetic for his romantic miscues are riotously funny. Mine are simply pathetic.

For a decade now, we have drifted in and out of each other’s life. We dated once. In the beginning, it was with genuine earnest but it gradually and gently dissolved. There was no huge argument or dramatic break-up. We simply melted away.

Why? Because he’s, well, he’s too normal.

He’s a nine-to-fiver, who lives a regular life, pays his bills on time, is dependable, punctual and shuns risk. He thoughtfully plans vacations, which is to say he is not spontaneous. As Daddy would say, “He’s as steady as a Roosevelt dollar.”

I, though, have always been drawn to the renegades. The risk takers, the gamblers, the ramblers, the live-life-on-the-edgers. Guys who are never normal.

And for him, I’m too, well, not normal.

I’m a risk-lover, a dream chaser and an abhorrer of nine-to-five hours and a regular routine. I’m a here-today-gone-tomorrow-liver. When adventure beckons, I chase that light with quick impulse and childish enthusiasm.

He has always dated women who were normal and I have always dated guys who weren’t. Still, we see and appreciate each other’s differences, knowing that there is always an attraction between opposites and that we are strangely and inexplicably bonded.

For we are solid friends. The kind of friends who accept the normality of one’s life while the other is accepted despite her abnormal life.

In this odd affair of ours, we always seem to be in-between situations at the same time so it is natural – even normal – for us to “go to” each other.

During dinner not long ago, we sat on the balcony of an old house in the historic gold mining town of Dahlonega, Ga., nibbled from each other’s plate of Cajun cuisine and talked of our latest heart-tearing travails. It is normal for our abnormal pairing to talk of women who want too much too fast and men who give too little too often.

He told me his latest story first but it was nothing compared to the story I had. That’s unusual. Normally, my stories pale in comparison to his.

My story, for once, held him spellbound as I etched out the details of a recent romantic disaster. Romance for me is always shrouded in drama. This episode, though, could have won awards.

“It was like starring in a Lifetime movie,” I moaned as he laughed gently. “Which, of course, I don’t think is anything to be bragging about.” I rolled my eyes.

I punctuated the end of the story with a disgusted frown and shook my head. He smiled and offered words of condolence.

Then, without warning, as the huge, full moon hung boldly and brightly over his shoulder and a slight breeze tickled musically through the trees, I saw something I had overlooked before. I took a long, appraising look and saw more than that wonderfully handsome face, broad shoulders with sculpted muscles or the gentleness of his temperament and kindness of spirit.

I saw a perfectly normal man and a quality that had once distracted me now attracted me.

Normal, I thought to myself, had never looked so inviting.

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