THE BLOG
05/02/2010 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

The Nice Guy: Fact or Figment of Our Imaginations?

Life is all about change. You change your job, change your hair, change friends/significant others and even change apartments. After a recent string of bad dates, I decided to take a look at my dating history to see what common thread ran through the men that I tend to be attracted to. Then once I found it, I was determined to pluck that thread and burn it. I came to realize, that like many other women out there, I am attracted to the cocky and emotionally unavailable types. My sister calls them "bad boys." I call them delicious (see the problem here). I can recall countless late night martini induced phone calls to my sister, where I would bitch about another break up with an a-hole guy that didn't turn out to be what I had hoped, only to hear her repeat these famous words that are now burned into my brain, "There are no victims in relationships with these type of men Gena, just volunteers." Truer words were never spoken. Like many women out there, I thought I could change these men into someone I wanted them to be...you know, someone who wanted to settle down, and at the very least, someone with a soul.

A week ago, Mr. Nice Guy showed up in my in-box with a simple email that made me smile. It read, "Witty and beautiful? How could one man get so lucky on a Monday?" What followed was a week of non-stop flirtatious emails that would have made my mother blush. I met Mr. Nice Guy for happy hour one night after work, and was excited to learn that he was as handsome as I had hoped. He told me that he was a trader by profession, but his heart was really in non-profit and any money left over from his paychecks at the end of the month were always donated to charities. Did I hit the nice guy jackpot or what? He couldn't have been more perfect if I put him together myself, like my own little Build-A-Boyfriend. My sister would be proud. We were having a really great time and chatting about everything from Politics, to Religion to The Bachelor (Speaking of...Vienna? Really Jake? Really?), when we stumbled upon the topic of family. I mentioned that my sister is a writer and that one of her books was called, Addickted- A 12 Step Program To Breaking Your Bad Boy Habit.

As I go into my sales pitch for the book, I looked up, and noticed his face had drained of all of its color. He looked at me and said, "Your sister wrote that book? My ex girlfriend would not stop talking about how her exes were bad boys and that she was so happy that she had found me because I was one of the nice ones." I laughed and said, "You act like that's a bad thing! I actually thought that you seemed like a nice guy too." Immediately, he stands up and says, "I'm not a nice guy, Gena. I'm not even close. You have me pegged all wrong." His voice now growing into a full-on yell as the people in the bar stopped and stared, he continued, "In fact, I was going to make you pay for the drinks. Would a nice guy do that? Also, would a nice guy tell you that he just had sex last night with some random girl he took home from a bar? Ha! Take that!"

Um, what the eff just happened here? One minute, I'm on a date with a charming man that gives his spare money to various charities and the next minute I'm on a date with a man who, at any minute, looked like his head might explode. Once I stopped my head from spinning, I quickly threw down a twenty for my half of the drinks (I'll be damned if I was going to pick up his part -- especially after he went all Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde on me), told him that I was going to use the restroom, and suggested he be gone by the time I came back. After a few minutes, I came out of the bathroom and noticed that Mr. Nice Guy had indeed left. On my way out the door, the waitress stopped me and told me that my date said that I would take care of the bill. He apparently pocketed the twenty dollars I had left on the table and I was left paying for the entire tab and paying for my part of the tab twice!

I did not expect my nice guy date experiment to end like that at all. In fact, in my head I thought that we would have a couple of nice dates, some nice conversation, and if things worked out, we would have a nice wedding and have a lot of little nice babies or something. Boy was I way off! On my walk home, my self-pity was interrupted when a handsome man with an adorably crooked smile and sad eyes asked me to join him for a glass of wine. I immediately thought this wouldn't end well, but then he flashed me his wicked grin and I figured one drink couldn't hurt, right? Whatever. Stop judging me people. Change can wait a few hours...