Daniel: the boy that wouldn’t say goodbye

Daniel (referred to as Daniel 2.0 due to the fact that my best friend for the summer was also named Daniel and insisted that he was more important) had an interesting history. From Spain, he told me that he wasn’t very sexually experienced and was interested in being adventurous for the summer. Seemed like a reasonable proposition to me, and he was pretty hot.

I started to inquire as to why he was inexperienced but had a bit of trouble getting a straight answer out of him.

We met first face-to-face randomly at the company lunch for gay interns. We soon started lifting together after work. It was cute.

There was just one little issue I started to notice: he wouldn’t say goodbye.

In general, any time I interact with someone, even a conversation with a person I met in passing, there’s some social standard that if you say more than about six words with someone, you should say goodbye when you leave. There’s some facet of opening a social connection that obligates one to bound the duration and acknowledge its presence through the formality of “nice to see you” when you’re done. When you leave your friend’s house, you say goodbye.

Daniel didn’t do that. He clearly had some of the signs of mild aspergers, but this was one I wasn’t very familiar with. It started as a bit of a curiosity: I was lifting with him one day and we were getting towards the end of the workout. We had talked a few minutes prior and had been working out for over an hour. Suddenly he was gone, and I didn’t see him for the rest of the night. He had just decided he was done and turned about face and walked out the door.

It was disconcerting. He repeated this multiple times: he left me when we were hanging out at a concert, and it began to get downright annoying. The weird thing was he didn’t mean any malice about it at all. He would see me again and just sort of start talking and pick up where we left off. And then just leave.

Finally I just gave up.

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