By a freakin' REPUBLICAN.
First of all, I have to say I appreciate his straightforwardness and honesty. My biggest bitch about the men in this town is the way they say they'll call when they have no intention of calling and the way they say they just want to be friends when they're too weak to actually say they'd really rather keep the "friendship" on an only-if-we-bump-into-each-other level.
And second of all, it's not like we had this epic romance going. We had four really nice dates, which progressed steadily from intense connection to sweet romance to funeral luncheon. We had a fifth date lined up before I took off for Montréal, but he kept postponing it. And I never got the hint. (But then again, why would I? He was already talking about getting his dog used to me so she wouldn't get all excited and pee every time I came over. I defy anyone to find anything but an I'm-definitely-interested-in-you subetxt in THAT.)
That said, it's never really fun hearing "I'm not really ready for dating" followed by "I'd like to just focus on my tight little circle of friends for now." Especially over the phone. Especially when you're already friends with a lot of the guys in that tight little circle.
But we were adults about it. I told him I was disappointed but that I understood. I almost told him to call me when he was ready to maybe get a friendship going, but I'm glad I didn't. Because he was sending clear signals that that would probably never happen. And my well-honed self-preservation mechanism had already kicked in.
So I guess that's the end of Red Shirt. Also known as Dan.
And I guess I'm free to keep looking ... with a totally clean slate.