I basically went on a blind date tonight. A week or so ago a guy on a dating site asked me out after just a message or two were exchanged. I was in an odd and somewhat desperate mood, so with just one quick scroll over his profile, I’d agreed. I’d almost forgotten about it until he checked in today to see if we were still on. I guess I’d also been hoping someone better would have come along by now, but seeing as a date might be better than no date, I went. On the train there was a guy sitting across from me who I mentally labeled “movie star pretty.” He had gorgeous eyes I kept catching. I caught him watching me reapply my lipstick, but only wound up starring at the floor, laughing to myself at how bad I am at flirting and how impossible I find it to smile at a stranger. I thought about jotting down a quick compliment with my number and handing it to him as I’d step off the train. I’ve probably been dreaming about putting that plan into action for years, carrying a small scrap of paper and pen everywhere I’ve gone, but still have never had the guts to do it. I wonder what makes me so outgoing at some moments, yet shy away so quickly during others –alcohol excluded. We wound up getting off at the same stop and I unintentionally ended up following him for quite a while as we were headed in the same direction, which would have made for an awkward exit if I had gone the route of handing him a note. After convincing myself he had a girlfriend and would have blown me off or that he might have been gay, I pushed the image of him out of my mind to arrive at the bar I was meeting my date.
My date wasn’t unattractive, but he certainly wasn’t what I’d called “movie star pretty.” We ordered drinks and I pointed out oysters were on the happy hour menu, as if I hadn’t checked the menu before heading out. This wasn’t a date from hell or anything, but I was not impressed. I was almost bored and had this feeling that he was continuously putting me down, forcing me to defend myself. He just didn’t make me feel great about who I was, and seemed very concerned with social status. He constantly tried to stereotype me and fit me into a box to group me into the type of person I was as if everyone can be so easily labeled. At one point he actually said, “You’re not as weird as I thought you were going to be.” I asked if that was a good or a bad thing. He said he was a little disappointed. I was a little insulted. An hour in I wanted a second drink, but didn’t get to voice that because he instantly told the waitress that we’d just have the check and informed me he had dinner plans with a friend next. I assumed it was another date. To top it off as I gathered my belongings, he also let me know that he had differing views about something I’m very passionate about. We agreed there wasn’t enough time to discuss it and I headed home.
I figured I’d never hear from him again. Clearly we didn’t click. He didn’t leave me feeling very positively about myself, and I’d been turned off by quite a few things he’d said about himself. The train ride home I decided to think of it as nothing more than free oysters and a free drink. I texted my hook-up buddy after months of silence; Busy. Then I came home to a text from the date asking me out to dinner next week. I wanted to text back that we didn’t click, but I hesitated and first checked my dating site inbox. Empty. Or at least empty of anyone I saw as a potential date. Then I googled the restaurant he suggested. Another fancy place I probably couldn’t afford. I’d never really dated for the dinners and drinks. It’s really never been my thing. But considering how poorly things have been going in my dating life, I figure it’s something to consider in the new year. Back to something being better than nothing. If I meet someone more interesting, I can cancel. If I’m not in the mood or my conscience is bothering me, I can cancel. Or on Saturday night I can just look at the menu online and debate how hungry or in the mood I am for a fancy meal. Women do this all the time. This date barely let the check hit the table before scooping it up and announcing he’d pay. Why not give it a shot? I can end this after one meal, just two dates in, right? All of these questions are being triggered because I find something unsettling about this, but considering my current path hasn’t lead me anywhere great yet, perhaps some actions unlike myself couldn’t hurt? Don’t worry, I’m already picking out the slightly less expensive dishes from the menu so the side of guilt served is a little smaller.