Muslim Girl in America

I'm an American girl, born and raised, and a Muslim.

Jersey vs. Texas (No, I’m not talking about sports)

on December 8, 2012

So after my last unsuccessful speed-dating foray, I decided to try online dating. Yes, I said it. Online dating. Well, online Muslim dating. I emailed with a few gentlemen, but for some reason or another it didn’t work out. Until I started speaking with this guy from Dallas. Texas, as I’ll now refer to him, is divorced, but was only married 4-5 months and with no kids. We just seemed to click and have a lot in common – our values, our families, our love of ‘80s movies, etc. And we’re still talking a month later, almost every day in fact. I enjoy talking with him and I look forward to meeting him in person soon. He’s not perfect (no one is, me included), but I can see myself laughing with him and talking with him every day, and we seem to have similar views on a lot of issues.

 

So things are going well, until another “proposal” comes along. My aunt passed along the information of this guy from New Jersey she found out about through her mosque. Jersey, as I’ll now refer to him, is also divorced (though he was married for 5 years with no kids). Our first phone conversation went okay. He has some … troubling … views on things though. I won’t say he’s racist, but he’s definitely some kind of –ist, I just haven’t figured out which one yet. He complained that his ex-wife didn’t clean well enough and didn’t cook fresh meals every day. He seemed nice, except for this demanding side of him. I tried to explain that it’s not realistic to expect freshly cooked meals every night unless you’ve hired someone else to make them. You get busy – even my mom (a homemaker) didn’t make meals every night. We had the occasional pizza night or night out eating, which Texas seemed to understand (I brought up the subject with him after this conversation with Jersey) even if Jersey didn’t. Jersey is also very keen to speed things along. At the end of our first conversation, he asked how I wanted to proceed. I said that I think we should talk some more and meet (just the two of us) before involving family. He agreed. But then proceeded to text my aunt and tell her I’m the one he’s been waiting for and asked her how he should proceed. So then I have family bombarding me with texts and phone calls wanting to speed things along. And let’s not forget the fact that Jersey completely disregarded my feelings and just did what he felt like doing. Well, I like to give people the benefit of the doubt, so we ended up talking some more. I know from experience that people act differently on the phone than they sometimes do in person, so we met up. I don’t have high hopes for him, mostly because each of our subsequent conversations after the first consisted of me repeating information about myself that he clearly wasn’t listening to the first time we talked. Anyway, here’s how our meeting went.

 

So Jersey took the train down to meet me. I planned a day of museum sightseeing (which included an exhibit on the James Bond movies, as he said he was a big fan). I figured if conversation lagged, then we had other things to amuse us until we thought of a new topic. He brought me chocolate (Godiva, which I’m pretty sure he bought from the Godiva store at the train station, but still thoughtful). We met up inside a museum and he tells me how the woman working security at the entrance was joking with him and asking if she could keep it. To which, he replied, “Well, maybe if you were 30 years younger.” Wow. Not the nicest thing to say, for sure, and he didn’t seem to realize it was wrong to say it. Anyway, we walk around the first museum. It goes fine and so we head to the next museum.  On the way, he starts to bash the founding fathers of America a little bit. I defend them (yay, America!) and try to point out where he’s wrong. He wasn’t born here, but he is a citizen now – didn’t he have to take a test on American history before he could take the citizen’s oath? Maybe it didn’t stick. Anyway, our arrival at the next museum ends our “conversation.” It starts off well – I spend an inordinate amount of time in the “First Ladies of America” exhibit where there are dresses and china patterns in abundance and he doesn’t complain. But you know how in some museums, they’ll have people dress up as characters and act out a piece of history? Well, this museum had an exhibit on Civil Rights history, and the woman asked the audience, “Do you think it’s right that a restaurant should serve one person but not another?” To which, Jersey replies, “Yes, absolutely.” I look at him appallingly. And then I look around and see if there is a way I can pretend I’m not with him.  At least he just said it to me and not the whole room, but still! “I’m joking!” he says. Twisted sense of humor he has. And it’s not a Family-Guy-twisted-sense-of-humor-that’s-actually-satirical-and-amusing, but just twisted. Anyway, we’re barely 90 minutes into the day at this point and I just want to go home. But he did pay for the train ticket down and, if nothing else, I think I should get a free meal from this (assuming he picks up the check, which I think he would), so I muddle through. We head to the next museum with the Bond exhibit which is actually pretty cool. But as we walk through I realized I was more interested in looking at the exhibits than seeing what he thought about them or even talking to him. Afterwards, we head to lunch at a Mediterranean tapas place down the street and the food was fantastic. Our conversation is pleasant and stays pretty superficial, though at one point he does ask me what he thinks about us moving forward. I tell him that I’ll need to think about it and that we should talk some more. If he remembered anything that I said today, I would take that as encouragement but I’m not hopeful. But the food was fantastic. And dessert was scrumptious. Seriously. Three words: rose ice cream. Totally worth the day.

 

After I get home, I see Texas has called and left a message for me. I call him back and we spend over an hour chatting and it doesn’t feel like an hour. He recalls things I’ve said before and I’m again struck by the difference between Jersey and Texas. Texas says that he’s planning to come meet me in January sometime. I tell him I would really appreciate him coming sooner rather than later, as I’m a girl and I have different pressure on me than he might, and both my parents and I would like to know if this should move forward or not (and I do tell him that I hope it does move forward). We have a “future conversation” where he’s talking about post-wedding life in a general sense, but really in a “post-you-and-I-wedding” sense. And I feel hopeful. I feel good. I feel excited that there may be someone out there who listens to me, and respects me and my opinions on things. And I think about my parents and I hope that when I tell them how it went with Jersey and how it’s going with Texas, that they’ll understand and let me hold out hope for Texas. I think I’m on Team Texas. Sorry, Team Jersey.

 

Thanks for reading!

-M

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3 responses to “Jersey vs. Texas (No, I’m not talking about sports)

  1. Hello there!

    I’m truly interested in your story. I experienced this muslim dating site, once, before I got married. And no, I didn’t marry any one of them on the site..Lol..

    Well, what I’m gonna say is that, things can be changing so quickly, sometimes what we have expected before doesn’t literally go along with what we have now.

    Good luck with your Texas team, though. Wish things will run well in January 🙂

    Greetings from Indonesia.

  2. B Girl says:

    Yay Team Texas!! I hope it all works out well – hurry up and meet so that piece of the puzzle can slot in 🙂

    Boo Team Jersey!! He needs to be out of the running completely!

  3. […] Jersey vs. Texas (No, I’m not talking about sports) Dec […]

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