New Man in Town

Not only in the age of Jane Austen was it universally acknowledged that a single man possessed of a good position is in need of a wife.  In this age and this city, the belief still holds strong.

New Concertmaster in TownSince our orchestra hired as its concertmaster a divorced man, serious note has been taken.  Society matrons sit transfixed in their seats, watching the passion of his playing, the way he sways as his bow caresses and plucks the strings of his violin, the way his gray locks fall over his brow.

The unmarried among us fantasize about what those strong strokes and practiced technique would be like applied to us.  The married women sublimate by plotting matchmaking strategies for their single friends.

Among the latter category is my friend, Marlys, who serves on the orchestra board.  This gives her access, the first necessity for any matchmaking.

Her strategy involved inviting me as her guest to a post-concert reception for major donors.  She introduced me to Nathan, the distinguished newcomer, by saying, “This is one of my closest friends, Georgia.  She co-chairs the children’s education committee.”

He looked down at me.  As a tall woman, I love having a man actually looking down at me.  Makes me feel all feminine.  He focused completely on me, cutting Marlys right out of our conversation circle.  Rude, maybe, but under the circumstances, quite delicious.

“How is it possible we haven’t met before?” he asked.

Masked Vixen Divorcee“We have.  At the masked ball.  I was wearing my red mask from New Orleans, with feathers up to here.”  I made a fluttering gesture high above my head.  “You had on the magnificent affair you said came from New York City, with the velvety black plumes tight across your face.” Here I stroked my cheek.

“How inexcusable of me not to get to know you better then.  I hope it’s not too late to change that,” he said.

“Not at all,” I replied.

He touched my arm.  “Call me the next time you’re coming in for a meeting.  I’ll take you to lunch.  I


have some ideas for the school program I’d like to share with you.”

He gave me a lingering backward look as he was drawn off by one of the other trustees.

Marlys placed the tip of her index finger on her tongue, then touched it to my arm.  “Pssstttt,” she said, making a sizzling sound.  “I haven’t seen anything that hot in years!  No movie scene could have been better scripted.  45 seconds of perfection.  I loved your gestures.  I’m  flushed from the heat, and I was only watching.  Call him!”

Three days later Marlys phoned.  “Have you heard from Nathan yet?  He cornered me before I left the reception to check on your last name.”

“No,” was my response.

“Call him!” she said.

“I wanted to give him a chance to call me.”

“Forget that!  Take your destiny in your own hands.”

The next day I called. My stomach heaved in embarrassment during the entire conversation.

He didn’t remember me.  Or, he’d forgotten the sizzle that provoked his invitation to lunch.  Or, Marlys and I had a joint hallucination.

Whatever the case, though gracious, he was coolly, distantly, so.   I hung up with a lunch date on my calendar and the sincere wish that I’d never dialed his number.

The day came and I woke up with a fever, barely able to talk.  I croaked out my apologies over the phone for having to cancel.  With relief in his voice, he suggested I call to reschedule when I felt better.

Since then, I’ve bumped into him when Marlys and I have been about our volunteer business at  the concert hall.  He greets her warmly, important person that she is.  Never remembers me.

This single man of good position is still in need of a wife.  He’s all yours.

Have you ever misread signals from someone of the opposite sex as badly as I did?  Or maybe I didn’t.  Maybe…….., maybe what?

8 thoughts on “New Man in Town

  1. Georgia,

    First, I thoroughly enjoyed this story and I would like to offer some comments. The actions and reactions exhibited by Nathan may not come from a basis of rejection of or lack of interest in you. It just may be that Nathan is a shy and reserved individual as am I. There are those of us who find it very difficult to approach a woman on a personal level and engage in conversation that is structured to lead to a social engagement and potentially a relationship. It took six encounters with my current romantic interest before I embraced the courage to ask her out. When I summoned up that courage, to my surprise, the word “yes” escaped her lips and we have now been happily exploring the depth our relationship.

    I have been wanting to move our relationship to a more intimate level but struggling with how to do so. I was introduced to your diary by a colleague and friend for which I am grateful. I was captured by your entry ” The Poetry of Seduction” and took it upon myself to memorize “To His Coy Mistress” with the intent of reciting it to my new found love and with the hope that she may see a facet of me that is there but buried. After reciting the poem to a small group of friends, it was suggested that I work on my delivery, which I did.

    Since our schedules precluded seeing each other today, we went out last night to celebrate St Valentine’s day. Following dinner, we walked back to her apartment for some wine and conversation. After a glass of wine I told her I had a gift. She took my hand and as she did I recited the poem never taking my eyes from hers. When finished there was silence, a tear and before a deep and loving kiss came my gift from her; the words ” I love you.”

    Thank you for your gift Georgia and thank you to my friend who gave me the courage to believe in me.


    • Hi Brian: This comment from you is going to stand out as one of the best Valentine’s gifts I have ever received. First, thank you for bucking me up about that silly interaction with Nathan.

      The best part of your comment, the part that has me feeling weak in the knees, is your experience last night. I am honored to have had some part to play in moving your love to say for the first time (I’m assuming), “I love you.” She is lucky to have met a man with a responsive, romantic heart who would take the time to not only memorize, but practice the poem.

      I wish you many more equally special moments with this woman.

  2. Hi Georgia,

    In many of your previous posts, you tackle such subjects as; love and chemistry, love at first sight, seduction, attraction, and knowing when “he is not the one”. From my view, the only glue to be found connecting you and Nathan was Maryls.

    It was she who saw a spark and she who encouraged further exploration. Attracted was he, ah yes but obviously on just a physical level. Attracted was she, ah no or she would not have needed encouragement to call. Parts of the magic that bring two people together were there but not enough to create something which was not meant to be. That spark, that magic that unquantifiable mysterious ingredient that is so necessary to make love happen was simply missing from the pallet. As Lawrence Ferlinghetti would point out, “Georgia, he is not the one”

    I did love this story. Thanks once more.


  3. Hey Georgia,

    You had me at “….serious note has been taken.” You are such a wonderful
    writer, not to mention story teller. To continue the metaphor, Nathan sounds
    like a player. I am not buying he’s shy, he sounds like a man who needs
    an audience . . . of women, not just one devoted soul. I’d say you dodged
    a bullet.

    • Hi Caryl: I think you’re right about that bullet. Thanks for the comment and the compliment, which is particularly meaningful since I think you’re a good writer (Readers, see the blog, Second Lives Club).

  4. For me, it was the cute guy at the gym. I misread the signs, my invitation fell flat, so embarrassing. Yet, if it had worked out, it would have been worth it, right? No pain, no gain, as they say.

    • Hi friendforu: You’re right about the pain and the gain, but what would be wrong with a world with a little less pain, a little more gain and a lot less embarrassment?

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