Recently, I've come into contact with a strange phenomenon called the Faux Flirt. I'd heard stories about this species but, had yet to lay my own eyes on one. This person will inquire about your dating status, compliment you on your looks and generally give off very attentive energy. Typically, with flirts, you get the impression that they are feeling you, this one may even lay it on a little thick. You can of course tell the difference between the casual flirt and the kind that actually may be interested in you. Like sincere flirts, the Faux Flirt is single and seemingly available to date. The only difference between the Faux Flirt and a real flirt is that the fake version will invest a great amount of time with no intention of actually 'closing the deal' or asking you out.
One could ask, well, why don't you seal the deal yourself? The reason you can't do that is because the fake flirt has pre-empted that move by either, pushing his friend off on you or giving you his email address.
The first option is obviously a dead end. You can't in good faith entertain the friend after you've spent a few hours vibing with his boy. The second option is a red-herring. You and he email each other a few times and the chemistry that you thought you had just dissipates. He never tries to elevate the communication to a higher level such as a phone call. This move lets you know that he is NOT interested and you should probably move on.
Scientists can not agree when this species first came into existence or what circumstances occured to create it. They just seemed to appear out of nowhere. It could be a product of global warming but the data is inconclusive. One thing that is indisputable is that meeting one can be confusing. You'll leave the encounter wondering how you could've read the signals incorrectly. The best way to deal with them is to just not take them too seriously, and consider it good practice for when a sincere flirt comes along.