Never eat at the bar alone.

I had been out making sales calls, finished up the morning and took my car at lunch for the needed oil change.

The line was long for the oil change, so I Uber’d to a nearby place for lunch.

Being by myself, and being lunch I opted to eat at the bar.

There was a couple, and a solo, older man already there, and they were mostly finished with lunch. I dug thru my purse for my expense receipts, business cards, et al so I could update my expense account, and my CRM.

The older man (late 60’s early 70’s) was to my left. He was a chatty guy. He had been conversing with the couple, and he turned to me. “I love your dimples. Do you know what they mean?” I responded politely “not sure, there are lots of stories”. He said “It means you’ve been kissed by God”. I replied with a little nervous chuckle, ” I had heard ‘kissed by angels, before.” I was Hoping that was the end of the discussion. But no. Innocuous conversation about what I do, He noticed my wedding ring, asked about my husband. He wanted to know if I had children, made a comment that “I looked too ‘young’ to have boys their age.” We talked about the Astros, as there is a big game tonight. More personal questions ensued. Then My Creep-O-Meter got too loud to ignore, and I HAD NO IDEA what to do! For a gal who always has a plan….this created an issue for me.

It’s been so long since anyone has flirted with me I was dumbfounded, and in desperate need to flee.

I couldn’t eat. I couldn’t get out of there fast enough.

I ordered an Uber back to the auto shop, and the poor Uber driver…..I made no sense to him at all, I was that rattled.

The sad thing is I’m completely out of practice turning those situations around. They are easy to diffuse, and I remember being good at it a long time ago. He was a single, older man, looking for a date, conversation, probably more. That is ok. I’m just so out of practice, I couldn’t be graceful in my “No thank you”, and still continue a polite conversation.

Truly, I think that ability is a woman’s power–To Be graceful . Graceful in conversation, and graceful in the No Thank You —when a man is just being a guy….Probably feeling as awkward as I did.

I think what rattled me most was my belief that no one would be interested in flirting with me. That sort of shook me.

What a wake up call to sharpen a long dusty, rusty, skill set of being part of the human race. Flirting, conversing, or just Being an interesting and kind person to all that I can is important. For sure, there are enough jerks out there.

No need to be awkward about it. Now, where do I practice my “No Thanks” graceful, lady like phrases?

It’s times like these, I appreciate my husband’s presence. He’s a wonderful covering, and one of the reasons I’m out of practice.