My Date with the Tortured Soul
You asked for it and here it is ladies & gents... Let me take you back to when I first launched Revel+Motion back in July 2018. I launched my website with three total posts already on the site and I had "The Types of Guys You Will Meet in ANY City" ready to go. To this day it is my favorite thing I have written for R+M. If you haven't already read it (um, rude) here's a quick refresher:
Ah, the tortured soul. The “fixer upper”. The handsome guy you just can’t seem to figure out. Find him at a dive bar or brewery with only one or two of his friends or even alone. He will be very good-looking and you’ll think to yourself how is this guy single??? He’ll listen to you when you talk, sincerely compliment you, and then will release the gates of emotions when you ask him a simple question.
“Where are you from?” you ask with a smile. BOOM. Next thing you know he is telling you about his bitch of an ex who cheated on him with his best friend and then took the dog. He will entice you because he is like a class project and you see the potential. He probably enjoys doing more hipster-like activities. He isn’t the guy to invite to your friend’s party bus for her birthday or to bring around your guy friends. He’s more into going to watch the new movie in theaters with bad reviews because he wants to form his own opinion and hates conforming to society’s standard, vom. He wants to do more avant-garde type shit like a whiskey tasting, check out a new art exhibit, or go see a band you’ve never heard of in a sketchy part of the city.
A plus is he most likely doesn’t have social media and if he does he rarelyyyy uses it, love that. If you’re into a guy with a lot of feelings and someone you need to really shape into a guy you want to date then look no further than the tortured soul. Hope you’re a good listener though because he loves to talk about his issues, good luck... I bet he’ll cry.
Okay, done? Great let's get into this shit show. So as you read... I described a tortured soul and what you can expect from engaging with one. I should have followed my own advice because I found myself face to face with one and it was a miserable experience. This is a real story and I'm pretty sure he's going to read this (yikes) so let's give him a fake name: John.
I came across John on Linkedin and then actually slid into his Instagram DMs about a company I saw he worked for. John was really good-looking and played football at the same college I went to but we never really crossed paths. He is a few years older than me and was teammates with my ex-boyfriend. I wanted to find out more about his company because my company works with them on a national level (I'm so resourceful) so I asked if there was a good time we could hop on a call. He was very nice and gave me his number and a good time for us to talk that night.
We talked on the phone and he was really engaging, charming, and funny. After I asked him a bunch of questions about his company the conversation shifted to a more casual vibe. We talked about where in the city we both lived, what we liked to do for fun, and what restaurants we like (my favorite thing to talk about). He asked me what my favorite type of food was and I told him authentic Italian food. He ended the conversation asking me to go to dinner on Saturday. I loved it, he was super forward and confident... I thought it was so sexy.
A few days pass and I ask him where we are going on Saturday. He tells me he is going to take me to his favorite Italian spot... in Media. I'm sorry, we both live in the city where you can throw a rock and hit a killer Italian place (my personal favorite is Burrata which will be on my date night spot post). You're going to take me 20 miles outside the city when we could just go somewhere in the city? I thought it was weird and a little serial killer-adjacent but I let it go.
I had my a lash appt that night (@ LashBee w/ Dana obviously) and he picked me up after. I remember I was nervous but my lashes looked fucking amazing so I was pretty confident it would go well. He picks me up and instead of being like, "hey, how are you? You look nice!" he starts going off about why he hates driving in the city and cursing up a storm. It was a little alarming and kind of a turn off. I asked him how his day went and he said it was terrible and long and he's really tired, little Mr. Sunshine over here.
We drive out there and I quickly realize he's my least favorite type of person to talk to. He is the type of person that will ask you a question just so they can be asked that question back. "Did you like going to Pitt?" he asked me. I told him yes, but I don't miss college which launched him into a 20 minute rant about football and partying in college. Dude, if you just want to talk the whole time go ahead... I won't be listening.
We FINALLY get to middle-of-nowhere Media to this Italian restaurant that doesn't even fucking serve pasta. I was pissed and ended up getting fish. I order a glass of wine, because obviously I need to drink to get through the rest of the date, and when the waiter asked him what he'd like to drink he says, "I don't drink." We sit in a momentarily awkward silence when I reluctantly ask why he doesn't. As soon as the question slips from my in between my lips I regret asking. He talks about his experience with drugs and alcohol and his friends overdosing for, no joke, 15 minutes straight. I ate the majority of my entree during this very personal sermon. I also ordered another glass of Pinot Grigio because one glass wasn't cutting it. He finally ends and asks me about my family. Oh boy, I was almost scared to answer because my family is the best and I thankfully don't have any family drama.
After answering the family question I purposely don't ask him about his family. Turns out I didn't need to because he then starts revealing very personal details about himself, parents, and siblings. Details I would personally never tell even my best friends and he's telling me... a stranger. I was so thankful the waiter brought the check as he was inching closer to his drug and alcohol experience again. We walk to the car and have to trek all the way back to Philadelphia, ugh. I realize I'm stuck with the quintessential tortured soul for the next 30 minutes with no escape. As he's finishing his rant against sports media I cut him off and tell him that he talks a lot. He looks shocked, but I have had enough at this point.
"You told me a lot of really personal things tonight and while I appreciate you being open, I'm also pretty much a stranger to you. Can we just talk about some normal things? Not such sad stories?" I straight up say to him. He agrees and apologizes and blames his over-sharing on nerves. He tells me he thinks I'm beautiful and cool which is why he's so nervous. The rest of the drive he is SO normal and funny! It's like god damn Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Emotional. We get to my street and continue to talk. I'm starting to like this version of John and think he could take a little bit of "fixing" but could be a real catch with some work, classic tortured soul formula. He kisses me goodbye and damn... the kiss was really good. He asked if I wanted to go to dinner next week and I agree, silently hoping this version of John will be there.
Next week comes and he says I can pick the restaurant because obviously I wasn't a fan of his sub-par choice. He also brings me the most beautiful flowers from a florist, not grocery store flowers honey, because I told him work was stressful that day. How sweet! I was thinking maybe our talk resonated with him and I was going to get cool, chill John from now on. Spoiler: THAT DID NOT HAPPEN.
We go to Veda, another one of my favorite date-night spots, for a later dinner. We are just finishing our appetizer when I ask him a simple question about how his day went and SOMEHOW his answer develops into that casual time he was arrested for selling HEROIN in the cut, North Philadelphia. Yes, you read that correctly. I was absolutely shocked because looking at this handsome, Italian boy from the Philadelphia suburbs he would be one of the last people I'd ever think would be arrested for selling HEROIN, like holy aggressive.
"Don't judge me," he combatively says to me. I tell him I low-key am and again, ask him how on earth did we get to this conversation? I asked you a simple question! Why are you so dead-set on talking about depressive shit? I mean it's classic tortured soul behavior if I've ever seen it. Mentally I've decided I never want to see him again and opt to give him some unsolicited advice. I tell him he should go talk to a therapist, which he didn't take well. If you're going to unpack all your over-size baggage on a girl you're romantically interested in then I think you should go see a professional who can help you work through your issues.
We walk back to my car and he stops and kisses me. The kiss that gave me extreme butterflies only days before now made me feel nauseous. He asks to see me again and thankfully I was going to ATL for Super Bowl so I had an excuse for the next week. The next day I end up sending him a text saying that he's a nice guy but we are looking for different things and I don't want to waste his time. He wrote back saying he that's fine but asking what I thought he was looking for. I didn't engage because I simply didn't care enough to.
Let me tell you John, the tortured soul of Philadelphia, what you are looking for: a therapist and I'm never going to be that. I don't work hard all day to then go to dinner with someone who unloads their day and baggage on me. I go out with people to have a good time and get to know them, not to be talked at about how their life is harder than mine. I know how I'm coming off, but I'm not this harsh, cold-hearted bitch. I'm 100% there for my friends if they ever need to talk about things because we aren't strangers, we are friends. A guy I just met is telling me he was arrested for selling dope, has drug and alcohol issues, and family drama and we have been on two dates. That's absolutely insane to me and I'm thankful to be done with the tortured soul.
What I'm taking out of this experience with John is that I need someone with their shit together emotionally. I don't do well with being someone you're dating and also moonlight as your therapist. I don't unravel my personal baggage (which is very light, like a personal item) on people I'm dating until we are at least few months in and know each other better. When you're first dating someone you want to show off all your good qualities and slowly show the not-so-great shit as time goes on because there is more of a relationship there. Know what I'm getting at?
I'm thinking of writing about my dates with other "types of guys". What do you guys think? I mean I have plenty of material on "The Athlete" and "The Too Nice Guy". I try to avoid "The Former Frat Bro" at all costs but did just go on a date with one this week. Let me know what you want me to write next! Thanks for reading hookers, enjoy your weekend.