Dudefile #94 – The Mix Tape Dude

Okay, DW:

 Counting on you to translate here.

Hooked up at a conference a few weeks ago.  He was fun, smart, a good kisser, etc. Felt like a guy my friends would be friends with, you know? I had an early train departure in the morning and while he was snoring I slipped out before the alarm he had so courteously set, leaving (only) my (mailing) address on a hotel pad (we’d talked competitively about exchanging music mixes). I ended up tracking down his email a week later, and we exchanged a handful of emails. I also sent my phone number, but he hasn’t used it. Today I got two cd mixes in the mail from him, with covers he made, and a very basic note. 

So – I’m confused. I had fun and genuinely like him & would love to get together again, either for a hookup or something more. He was definitely the pursuer that night. We live in different cities. I was the one to track down his email & get in touch first (though he claimed to have already been working on the cds). Some days we’ve emailed back & forth several times. Then, nothing for several days, which is where we’re at now, and I wrote last. And, again, no call. But the package seems like some effort on his part. 

I know my behavior is part of the equation here, but I am puzzled.  I’m trying not to read too much into the song topics/lyrics, but is that a mistake? There are several lovey-dovey songs. Appreciate the fleeting nice time for what it was, or is there potential for something more? Also, respond sooner rather than later to the package, or wait a bit? 

Many thanks for sharing your wisdom.



Hi Confu,

Ah, the out of town hookup. Good times. 

First of all, since the central question here is over your confusion over the dude’s behavior, let’s take a step back and wonder how much reason for certitude you’ve given him. Yes, you smooched, but that doesn’t automatically mean a lot in the context of an out of town conference fling-dang-doodle.

And, while slipping out silently and leaving your snail mail address at the bedside might have been a seriously racy move in 1873, it might feel considerably less intimate and encouraging than your other options in the age of Facebook, Skype, and sexting. Carrier pigeon would have at least added a little flair.

Point is, dude could well have been that you were purposefully holding him at arm’s length. Imagine what you would have thought if you woke up with no pants, a knot of ripe sheets, no dude, and a mailing address. What the what? At the very least, it would seem a mixed message, right?

Now, it certainly shows interest that you found the dude on email a week later, and that you offered your phone number. But what kind of interest? Did you wait a week on purpose, the dude might wonder, just so it’s clear this is a friendly music exchange kinda situation? Why a tap on the brakes and then a pump on the gas? First impressions mean a lot. Your first impression probably didn’t offer a clear path for the dude to travel. And that could be coloring everything after. 

Look, this isn’t to blame you. It’s just to offer that the dude’s side of this equation is just a muddled as yours. He has no idea what you want, either. Like you, he met somebody kinda awesome, did some naked networking, and woke up wondering what the fuck to do next. Same boat. To parse his every move as if this dude has all the answers will only make you nuts.

Another thing to consider is that dudes tend to be pragmatic in a way that makes women not so much think of the word Pragmatic as the words Confusing, Disappointing, Unsatisfying, or Deeply Un-Romantic. For example, in purely practical terms, you are a woman this dude hooked up with once, who lives at least one major city away, and whom he has yet to speak with on the phone. For now, unsatisfying or deeply un-romantic as it may seem, making a mix for you and emailing semi-regularly might be all he feels like putting into the situation, even if he’s pretty interested in you.

Sure, it might be much more Ryan Reynolds if he called every day for a week and then showed up at your door with a rose in one hand and a puppy in the other, but even if he did and you boned the night away with magical sensual explosion of tenderness and filth, the next morning when you woke up you would still live in different cities, still not Really know each other, and now somebody’s got to run out and buy a vase and some dog chow. And wouldn’t it creep you out a little if he suddenly came on that strong, anyway?

Look, so far this dude sent what he said he would send, he writes back when you write, and seems a decent enough fellow. A city away, he could have easily vanished into the ether by now if he wanted to. If you want another hookup and/or a date, though, the best thing to do would be to ask for it. If he’s gotten the impression you were keeping him at arm’s length or wanting to go at tortoise rather than hare speed, he might be too polite or discouraged to push you forward to dateland or back to fuckland himself.

Try this. Pick a spot halfway between your cities and ask if he’s ever been to the Boardwalk there, or the dog track, or the crab shack, or the World’s Second Largest Ball of Twine, or whatever silly diversion there might be in that burg and invite him to join you for an adventure. Or, you know, just shoot him a text of your titties. 

He’ll either accept or he won’t or he’ll come up with an alternate plan and things will either advance or they’ll slow or they’ll stop. But they will get clearer.

Here’s to 21st century love.


the DW

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3 Responses to Dudefile #94 – The Mix Tape Dude

  1. Daneka says:

    The whole exchange sounds super desperate. Sleeping with a dude on the first date usually puts you automatically in the hookup-only zone. And no matter how 21st century liberated women will claim to be, the fact is that most (not all but most) women want a genuine relationship to evolve out of their hookups. But it doesn’t work that way in a dude’s mind most of the time, and the fact that it’s all long-distance anyway just makes an easy exit for the guy. He doesn’t have to play the role of asshole to get rid of her, he can easily respond to emails and texts knowing that eventually the communication will naturally fade out without any drama. There is zero potential here.

    She needs to find someone in her own city and not hook up with him on the first date.

  2. Bobby says:

    I’m sure she appreciates your judgmental standards, Daneka. But I’m not sure your version explains why he would bother to send music.

  3. marmot says:

    I’m going to defer to the wisdom of The Dude Whisperer (TM) on this idea that a guy will never “be serious” about a woman who has sex on the first date. I’ve heard that before too and it annoys the heck out of me, not least because of the clear, sexist double standard–you never hear people talking about how a girl will never “be serious” about a guy who puts out on the first date. But anyway, to quote The DW (TM) from a previous column: NONE OF THAT SHIT MEANS SHIT. Stupid sexist little rules like “women aren’t allowed to have sex on the first date” only come into play if the potential relationship wasn’t really a fantastic idea in the first place. If two people are hardcore into each other and compatible and all that, it’s difficult to see how sex on the first date could be a bad thing.

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