This happened to me today in downtown L.A. after work and I wanted to solicit some opinions on whether other people would think of it as weird. I’m inclined towards “yes, avoid at all costs” but I can be overly paranoid sometimes.
I was walking to my bank’s atm to withdraw cash to pay parking when I drew up next to a fellow pedestrian at an intersection. This guy is at least 50+, very respectably dressed (nice suit), wearing a fedora hat. Must think he’s Cary Grant, or maybe he’s just wearing it for the day. I assumed he worked in finance or was a lawyer because pretty much everyone in the area is associated with legal or financial services. He does not look creepy. He looks over, I smile wanly and continue thinking about whatever I’m in a daze about.
The crosswalk signals us to walk and we both start off. He starts talking to me by saying something like “oh, is that your office worker costume?” I stare at him blankly because he has jolted me out of my stupour and say “what?” To which he responds, “I was just joking about you not wearing a costume.” And then I rolled my eyes and said “yeah, I’m costumed as a browbeaten federal employee today.”
So then he starts talking to me, asking me which agency and what I do. I tell him, it turns out he’s a lawyer (surprise surprise) whose firm does work with the DOJ. We continue talking about work as we’re walking, I respond to his query about how I like work by telling him I’m quitting to go to business school within a year to two years. Apparently he turned down Top 3 B-School to go to Top 5 Law School. After soliciting some information about my educational background, we come to the intersection where we’re going different ways and he asks me out to lunch.
A few things to keep in mind
-I am much much younger than this dude(29)
-I’m a federal attorney
I discussed this with my boyfriend and neither of us is sure what this dude’s game is. He could be interested in lunch because he already does work with federal agencies is and just wants to talk to me about that (we confirmed his educational background/details he gave me on his firm’s website but CalBar’s attorney search function is down so I can’t confirm it on that yet).
On the other hand, he was super pushy about getting my phone number even after he gave me his card. I don’t carry my card and was simply planning to email him from my work email but he told me he was working for Obama’s campaign on M/T and he wanted to program me in before he forgot and he definitely wanted to go out for lunch. He had me type in my number for him on the street. I’ll admit that even though I was semi taken aback, I kind of gave him my number because it felt rude to be like “NO”. Also of note-when I told him I was in the process of leaving the law, he was like “oooh, are you going to be an actress?” Which…hahahahaha…NO.
So, what’s more likely? That he’s hitting me up for potential business or that he wants to take me back to his garage and turn me into a lampshade.
I am not positive this is the same guy-but about a month ago I was riding my train back to Pasadena and another older white lawyer dude started chatting me up about the book I was reading (Kim-R.K.) and whether I was a local college student or why I’m reading a book in the public domain. The only reason I think it might be the same guy is that this dude was headed towards the metro station tonight, seemed about the same height, age, build. Still I can’t be sure, because a lot of people on the train have commented on why I read classic lit/WSJ and it’s always older, white males (why this is so surprising to them, or merits comment I don’t know).
My boyfriend thinks he could be a valuable contact and told me to go out to lunch in downtown L.A… somewhere very public and simply limit the amount of personal information I give him. However, the very nature of his job (i-banking) is networking and shmoozing. Plus, he’s (as in, my bf) is a taller built guy, not a glorified female elf (I’m small). I am half suspicious about why this man would just start talking to me on the street and worried about having my liver eaten before I accumulate an MBA. OTOH, a lot of my profession functions on shmoozery as well, but I have always been stupendously bad at it and super avoidant…which is probably why I’m very alarmed at being accosted on the street.
So…in your humble opinion…is the whole thing super weird? Should I avoid his call if he phones me up?