Every single has a Flirty Friend. You know the one: it’s the guy or girl with whom you have fabulous chemistry but – for whatever reason – you know they couldn’t/wouldn’t/shouldn’t ever be anything more than a mate.
In my case, the obvious candidate for this title is The Young Swede: he’s sexy, smart and incredibly good fun, and the hours fly by in his company. Whenever we get together we flirt outrageously … but the ten-year age gap means that anything more than friendship could only be classed as folly. In another lifetime, I’ll be five years younger and he’ll be five years older and we’ll live happily ever after. But for now, he’s Flirty Friend #1.
But there is also Flirty Friend #2.
This time it’s distance (and a good dose of common sense) that keeps us apart, but the Peruvian Puma can always be relied upon to lift my spirits with coquettish conversation and lots of improper innuendo.
Dark, handsome and dangerous, I know that if we ever got together, the Peruvian Puma would drive me crazy with his fecklessness – and probably break my heart into the bargain. But as a Flirty Friend he’s second to none.
The majority of our friendship has been carried out online – we’ve only met in the flesh four times – but we’ve managed to flirt, fight, fall out and kiss and make up many times over. He once stood me up when I’d travelled over 800 miles to meet him, and I’ve managed to offend his very soul with what I considered a fairly innocuous comment, but still our long-distance colloquy continues.
Whenever one of his messages pings into my inbox, I feel a frisson of excitement: a born flirt with an occasionally inopportune use of the English language, some of his comments cross the line from suggestive to scurrilous … but there’s no denying he’s darn sexy.
He’s also one of the very few people in this world who has managed to leave me speechless. And I mean REALLY speechless.
Picture the scene: it’s the evening of my birthday, and I’m getting ready to meet a few friends for pizza and a celebratory glass of wine when I get a Skype call from the PP. This in itself is quite unusual, since our correspondence is usually limited to messages and email, but of course today is different and I’m due some birthday wishes.
When he asks if I have time to talk, I truthfully say that I can chat for a few minutes, but then I have to leave or I’ll be late for dinner. In fact, I keep getting ready while we chat.
And so, I’m attending to my mascara when he starts his striptease.
Now, we’d bantered about this kind of thing in our flirty chats but – call me naïve – I’d never imagined it might actually happen. But there he is, doing a sexy dance and removing his clothes layer by layer. Wherever he is, it’s obviously quite chilly as he’s gone through about four jumpers, but before long he’s down to his undies and the application of my mascara has ground to a halt.
As he gets down to the nitty gritty, I remember myself and get back to my make-up: somehow, it seems rude to gawp, even if the show is for you and you alone. It seems, however, that this is the wrong response. In fact, he gets a bit tetchy, gathering his clothes around him and growling, “OK, show’s over!”
Somewhat nonplussed, I thank him politely, he wishes me a happy birthday and we hang up. As I run out of the door towards my dinner date, I finally burst out laughing – not so much at the notion of my birthday striptease, as much as my terribly British response and the smudge of mascara that’s halfway down my cheek.
Yep, there’s no doubt about it, he’s one wild cat. And it’s a good thing he’s on the other side of the world because if he were here, that Peruvian Puma would eat me alive.