Ann-Margret sang it way back in 1962, “Thirteen men and me, the only girl in town.” It’s a catchy little ditty. One guy “sweetened her tea,” while another “buttered her bread.” Wonder what that could mean.

My tale is a tad different. FYI: Names have been changed but everything else is true

1. Max. Early 40s. Met on Match. Good fried chicken at a Crenshaw dive. Converses well. Knows who my favorite 70s singer is. And her hits. Kiss on sidewalk. Flirty texts. Second date. Downtown steakhouse. He arrives. Jeans. T-shirt. Knapsack. I pay. In my car. Lean over. Lips ready. “What are you doing?” he asks. Alarmed. “Just trying to kiss you,” I say. Doesn’t want me to. I’m totally thrown. Drop him off. Pecks me on cheek. Leaves my car. And runs. Literally runs. Away. His email. Two days later: “Not. Your. Fault.”

2. Chaz. Late 20s. At a party. “You’re so handsome,” he says. Feeling’s mutual. Dark, dark skin, shaved head, pearly whites. Demands to come home with me. I relent. It’s fun. Way fun. My text: Let’s go out. His response: arrives eleven days later: “I didn’t want to bother you.” Revise hopes. Lower expectations. Focus on sex. Drinks. Saint Felix. Grabs my hand. Looks deep into my eyes. Says: “I want to get to know you. Really get to know you.” I laugh. Out loud. “You barely return texts!” Gym Bar. Emerges from restroom a different person. On something? “Gonna smoke a joint on the patio,” he says. Becomes incoherent. Sentences not making sense. No way. Just can’t do this. Kiss him gently. On cheek. “Be careful,” I say. And walk home.

Michael Jortner (Photo by David A. Lee)

3. Anton. 50. OKCupid. My best flirty message ever: “You seem like my type. Wanna find out if I’m yours?” Dinner. Silverlake. Lots in common. OMG! “You know the 1944 film The Uninvited?” Kissing. Three weeks, four dates later. My bed. Meh. “Relationship sex is different from hookup sex,” I recall my therapist saying. He doesn’t shower with me after. Pets my dog like it’s goodbye. Couple days later. I text. No response. 24 hours. Long time after you’ve slept with someone first time. Dinner. Avoids kissing me. I’m pissed. “Remember Sex and the City,” he asks, “when Carrie talks about the zsa-zsa-zsu?” He’s talking about chemistry. Doesn’t feel it. Between us.

4. Jose. 48. Hot. Networking event. La Peer Hotel. WeHo. Super turned on. He has a boyfriend. Month later. He’s single. In bed. Controlling. Robotic. Just a body part. But, oh what a part. I shoot for friends. With benefits. Still mechanical. At a party. Months later. He avoids me. Within a few hours. His text: “Sorry.”

5. Andrew. 50. OKCupid. Bald. Bright eyes. Big smile. Mid-Wilshire grill. Glasses of red. Burgers. Heat wave. We wear shorts. Has the thickest legs. Ever. Sexy. Second date. Arclight. Meal at Stella Barra. “I’ve never been here!” he says. Talks nonstop. Rapid fire fast. Forget which movie we saw. No longer interested. What was I thinking?

6. Dray. Early 50s. Drag show. Sunday night. Toucan’s. Palm Springs. Puts the moves on me. I pause: Do I want to go home with him? Answer: Yes. Muscles. Dark skin. Big _____. Dominant, naughty role-play. “You want me to f— you every time you come to Palm Springs?” Yes! Pick him up for dinner. “You’re late,” he says. “I don’t like guys who are late.” But I texted I would be. Sometimes life happens. His bed. Again. Fun. Again. But he’s rigid. And I don’t like guys who are.

7. Neal. Young. 28. Palm Springs. Grindr. Hello! Lives in LA. Works at startup. Nice. Not confident. Smart. Bit feminine. Skin like butter. Passive in bed. Way. Too. Passive. Must I do all the work? Come on, man. Whatever.

8. Jay. 36. Slacker handsome. Wears skullcap. Rides skateboard. At 36? Starbucks. Walk. Beverly Gardens Park. SMB. Small town boy. Northern California. Ultra-religious parents. Home-schooled. Believes in astrology. I see why. Not for me. So cute. Still want to. Kiss him.

9. Marshall. 53. OKCupid. Salt-n-pepper. Silverlake. Insurance guy. Second date. Resident. DTLA. He asks: “You want to get married?” Comedian Iliza Shlesinger says be honest. On dates. “I do,” I reply. “Me too!” he says. Leans across table. Kisses me. Bad sex. Both of us quiet. Long bike ride. Santa Monica to Manhattan Beach. Something offends him. What? Just friends. Feels better. Want to tell him. In person. Meet up? Doesn’t return my call. I text. He replies: “Unfortunately I’m not available.” Six weeks. Eight dates. Zero manners.

10. Tim. About 30. Networking event. Jeremy Hotel. WeHo. Adorable. Good, long chat. Wise beyond his years. Chemistry? Gives me his digits. Smitten, me. Lunch? His response: “Maybe.”

11. Carson. 29. Gym. Eye on him. For months. Coffee? Yes! Morphs into drinks. Sunday eve at Granville. Two hours. Lots in common. Politics. Murder mysteries. Ride home. Make-out sesh. #Nice. Wait two days. Text him: “Do something this weekend?“ No response. Wait 24 hours. “Um…is that a no?” He texts back: “I’m just super busy.” On our date he said he’s between jobs, not doing much. Ignores me. At gym.

12. Arnold. 60. OKCupid. Sends great message. Words well used intrigue me. Drinks. Kettle Black. Silverlake. Admits he’s older, “but not much older.” Good conversationalist. Writer. Worldly. Friends OK. But don’t tell him. Yet. Second date. Taix. Echo Park. Definitely just friends. Mentions James Lipton. Pretentious host Inside the Actor’s Studio. Reminds me. Michelle Pfeiffer was on. Her favorite word: “cherry.” Snobby Lipton disappointed. Arnold smiles: “Cherry’s a great word.”

13. David. 52. Dating app Chappy. Handsome photos. Coffee. Silverlake. Polite. He pays. Am I attracted? Dyed-blond hair. Little wide. Around middle. Dunno. Maybe? Good conversationalist. Knows how to ask questions. And answer them. He IMs: “Had good time. Hope we get together again.” Hmmm. What do I want? Smart, kind man who wants to spend time. With me. “Sounds good,” I reply. “After Christmas? Let me know when you’re back in town.”

Michael Jortner

About The Author: Michael Jortner

Michael Jortner is a freelance writer living in West Hollywood. He can be reached at writer@michaeljortner.com.

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