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Parallax - Advice

April 29, 2002

No Experience

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It's been said that experience is what you get when you don't get what you want. This week, we meet three people who will soon be very experienced—if they stop what they're doing, examine their options and listen to good advice. Mama always said, 'If you step in a puddle, don't blame the puddle.' Our Good Advisors concur.

Harmless distraction...
Or fatal attraction?
 Date: 04/29/02

He wants space.
She wants her place.
 Date: 04/29/02

Artful Dodger.
Doing the two-step.
 Date: 04/29/02

More from last week...

Harmless distraction...

Dear Conversely,

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A professional acquaintance of mine began flirting with me during meetings. He is married; I am not. I began flirting back to acknowledge my own sexual interest in him. During a private meeting between the two of us, I confronted the obvious, mutual sexual interest between us. I suggested that we act on it, but I didn't suggest anything more than a planned sexual encounter. He was definitely interested, and I threw out several alternatives for a physical encounter. He said he would call me at a specific time, but he didn't, and I have not heard from him. Why do men pursue women and when women respond, they run? I didn't start this; he did.

Her view:

Dear Flirty,

Grow up. It was just a flirting dance—and with a married man, I might add. You're all miffed he didn't follow through? Are you out of your mind?

Okay, let's have a closer look and see why he may not have followed through. Uh, he thought of his wife. Hmm, what else? He is married. Any other possibilities? Yes, he feels badly about cheating. Flirting is one thing; adultery is entirely another, I assure you.

So, let's stop the complaining, and pondering about the vast differences between men and women, and who has poor follow-through versus conviction. I think this is a pretty easy call; he is married and not yet ready to sleep around. What a jerk he is, for not making that more clear during your cheating flirtations.

You, however, have won the Darwin award. He probably saved both of you from some stupid cheating quagmire with the potential to cause three broken hearts.

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His view:

Dear Flirty,

Simple answer: Because they can.

Less simple answer: Because it's fun to pursue, even if you don't pull the trigger. Picture this: You're married, happily (yeah, whatever), but frankly (things being what they are), your relationship has been commoditized and boiled down to its most essential components—which you know by heart.

Some men will be satisfied with this; some won't. Some will find themselves in meetings, a bit bored with discussions about action items and budget cuts, and decide that, 'Wouldn't a little flirting go a long way to make this day (and other days, too) much more entertaining?' And then, when it turns out they've taken it too far—but not beyond the point of no return—they decide to call a flirt a flirt and live to flirt another day. Said story is then shared with numerous male friends and colleagues—to the enjoyment of all—and that's it.

If you don't want to get hurt, don't go flirting...especially not with a married man. End of story.

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You Vote!

You Vote! 38% of Women agree with HER VIEW and 62% with HIS VIEW.

40% of Men agree with HER VIEW and 60% with HIS VIEW.

You Vote! Do you agree more with HER VIEW or HIS?

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