Dating Confessions of a Recovering Manic Pixie Dream Girl 2.2: The Portland Post-Undergraduate Doldrums, Yassil

I was waiting for the Hawthorne 14 at NW 2nd and Alder and chatting with a waiter named Yassil, covered in food from his shift at McCormick and Schmick's. I previously had few other encounters here: 1) Quite a few tried to sell me weed. 2) I shared cigarettes with late-shift waiters from an amazing Peruvian restaurant.

We became seat buddies and exchanged numbers before my stop. He was a nice Jewish boy (his words) majoring in business at PSU.

A week later, he called asking if I wanted to get a drink. This resulted in an uneventful date--save for my valued introduction to the awesome nickel arcade on SE Belmont, some House of the Dead, skeeball and awkward handholding at the bus stop.

The second date, we walked down Hawthorne bridge, along the west riverfront and down Burnside. Crossing Burnside Bridge after dark is like a postapocalyptic movie. You hear a noise, look over your shoulder. Someone staggers your way. Pray they don't notice you. Could be a run-of-the-mill homeless person, someone strung out on drugs, or an actual zombie--which is better?

While walking through SE Portland, Yassil mentioned knowing dancers at Union Jack's (a strip club on Burnside). I wasn't sure if he was asking me to watch, but still, I felt uncomfortable. He later told me that he worked at Jimmy John's back in Wisconsin and dealt drugs on the side (yay small businessman!). He eventually decided that it was time to grow out of that and move elsewhere. Former drug-dealing sandwich-slinger, of course he’s in PDX business school.

Closer to my apartment, I told Yassil I wasn’t attracted to him. Of course, this was "totally cool" since he just thought I needed a friend as the new girl in town.

An amazing friendship blossomed: Yassil never called me again.