we've been friends for 8(?) years. Both ended LTR's this past fall, have hung out a lot since then (he is my ski buddy, getting into cycling too). On the occasion he's tipped one too many back he makes vague references to his feelings for me, and missed opportunities of the past.
The last time this happened I IM'd him about it a few days later, apologized for always blowing him off on the subject, but that I don't care to talk about it while drinking. I also told him I've wondered if there is more than a friendship there, too. I also mentioned it sucks to open this can of worms now, because he's casually seeing someone (and I usually have a few on the back burner, too..haha.). He replied "yeah, I've got bad timing" and the conversation moved off-topic. I concluded it by saying- well, I told you my thoughts, now its on you.
Few weeks ago he called about going to a movie- at first I thought I was too tired, but called him back in a half hour or so and said I was in (realizing it was unusual to call for a movie, we usually hang out among friends..something was up). He insisted on picking me up & paying which is unusual but other than that, no sign of a date.
==fast forward to tonight==
We've hung out a few times since the "date?" with friends, and last week went for a ride together. Nothing unusual.
Rec'd a call about 15 minutes ago. I knew he was out tubing/drinking/camping all day, but figured I'd pick up the drunk dial anyway. He mad a few minutes of small talk and here's basically the rest of the convo... keep in mind we're both pretty sarcastic and kinda joking...
him: "soo... I think you and I should go out next week. Maybe a couple times."
me: "oookay, what do you have in mind?"
him: "I think you know what I mean... go out.... sorry it took me so long to ask"
me: "Yeah, I think I know what you're thinking. But I'm also thinking you're going to wake up tomorrow and hate yourself for calling me today. So, if you call me tomorrow and ask me out that will actually count. This call doesn't"
him: "Ok, I'll call you tomorrow while you're on your 80 mile bike ride and leave a message"
me: "Ok, you know.. you could call tomorrow after my ride so we cold talk"
him: "Yeah, I figured you'll be wiped out..... you know, I'm just not sure you'll like dating a guy thats out of shape" (half-joking)
me: "I'll whip you into shape..."
more random chatting, jokes... etc.
him: "Sorry I waited so long. I mean... 4, 5 years? that was dumb"
me: "Actually, its been 6."
So basically ended the conversation. He was pretty tanked. Ha.
==what to do?==
My biggest fear is that if there's something brewing btw us that doesn't work out, I loose a great friend. But on the other hand, I think I'm also scared because I don't usually date quality men, I know he's a good guy, and that makes me nervous. Plus I'm not sure I want a relationship, and I wouldn't date if I was seeing him, he's more of a settle down with guy. soooo hm. guess a few dates wouldn't hurt?