While I have no objection to the "your teenage years: sexual interaction and you" (also if you did not read that in a 50s educational film voice for your given area/language I don't think we can be friends any longer) threads we occasionally see around here I thought we should do another style. This is that. As the title says we are looking for your best "how the hell did I miss the hint(s)?" type stories here. For those unfamiliar with the premise it is generally observed that many people, though mostly women, favour... more indirect means of communication. This absolutely extends to showing interest in a potential sexual or romantic partner, and indeed may well see such activities increased in subtlety. While there are no doubt instances where you remain oblivious to your obliviousness many will also have ones where days, weeks, months... later something clicks and "is that what that was" or someone makes you aware of such things. Such things can happen from 13 to 113, and while some may get better with time it is far from assured. It would be bad form to start a thread like this and not share one from the rather numerous list (that I know of) of my own. Scene. University halls (dorms in US parlance), fairly early days in the year. [For those unfamiliar 18 year olds away from parents for the first time, private rooms, several grand just dumped into their bank accounts, cheap booze in a country where 18 is the "as much as you have money for" limit for anything, completely unfamiliar people from all over the country... debauched does not even begin to cover it]. I am sitting there alone in the washing machine room playing my nice GBA SP whilst my drying goes on. Three seat bench sort of thing. Young lady wanders in, dressed much like she was going for a night out and not what one might call hard on the eye. Odd attire for a Sunday morning and it did not appear like a walk of shame (neither did there appear to be any signs of alcohol) but *points to location of this story*. I had seen stranger things. She does not have any washing but that is nothing unusual (some people would wander of and leave the cycle on either the driers or the washer to finish). She sits down next to me. The tests had came back inconclusive on whether I am a sociopath and that spurred me into learning to at least fake being human. To that end I was sitting on the extreme end of the bench. Now I understand there are cultures and places wherein one opts to sit next to another human if given the choice, however don't you know I'm English and so was she. Upon spying my GBA she asked "is that the latest one?", the question alone* screaming disinterest in the specifics of the answer and that was without the tone. Noting at least the disinterest I grunted/mumbled an affirmative. The pedant within however noted that the DS had not long been released in America at least and we were awaiting the release in Europe. I return to the serious business of megaman battle network... probably would have been 3 at the time. Some silence followed and after bracing herself and drawing a breath she redoubled her efforts to spark conversation. One of the higher level skills gained when becoming English don't you know is the ability to dodge idle conversation like a ninja. Speaking of ninja skills she then decided to fiddle with the automated washing machine in what said actual ninja training (or at least skateboarding, general martial arts and gymnastics) would say is a position that seriously exposes sensitive areas and makes even static balance rather difficult, not to mention the budding engineer within would note as being terribly inefficient movement to boot. Such things posed no physical threat to me and conveyed no need to seek medical help for her and thus full attention then returned to battle network. She sits back down, again next to me. The inner pedant had slowly been building in potency during this and thus I was compelled to inform her of my technical error earlier in not mentioning the upcoming DS. After an initial look of bemusement a glimpse of substantive conversation turned into a genuine smile, however I had reached a good place to end the battle network session and my dryer session had finished not long before. GBA powered off and pocketed (remember when they could do that?), polite nod to my conversation partner and I grabbed my washing and left. I don't know quite what the look was as I left the room is characterised as (maybe dejection?), certainly not a happy one though. Back in my room putting things in my suitcase (it would be a decade or more before I again figured out drawers for clothes) I was struck by a realisation and the phrase "is that what that was? Huh" entered the internal speech track. Traditionally these recountings end with a subsequent meetings/interactions following type bit, however I honestly could not tell you if I ever saw her again. I probably did as the sub complex (of which she was most likely a part) was some 300 people at best, all with similar schedules. Can't say I have any regrets (recall the earlier part about inconclusive sociopathy) but looking back on it all it amuses me. Some might wonder why someone which can read emotions and vocal tones missed such signals, answer is I had a choice between learning that and learning to spot threats/malice/duplicity. *you can figure out the exact timings for eventual releases, and sequels thereof, for phones but this would be several years before any normal person cared about the latest piece of electronic technology which made the question even more of a giveaway back then. Assuming you have not just cringed yourself inside out the your turn.