Dear grouchy neighbor: I’m considering your offer and need clarification before proceeding. Despite being an artist, I think you know that as a busy New Yorker, I am also practical and straightforward.
That said, I need to make sure you know that this could never turn into anything serious. I don’t care if you’re trying to get over your ex-girlfriend or hoping she’ll eventually want to get back together with you—just don’t project your messy feelings about her onto me.
Because, despite your resemblance to an underwear model, I won’t be falling for you. Ever.
Yours, with clear boundaries,
p.s. I’d like to be very clear that regardless of whether or not we do this, nothing will change my feelings for your dog (and we both know she loves me too).
Also available: Audible.