Archive | July, 2011

Your Father Isn’t… Sam

29 Jul

When I first saw Sam’s profile, I pictured him as one of those cool academics: cute and athletic, but also laid back. The kind of guy who manages to not look like a pretentious ass gently swirling a glass of wine while an eager crowd listens to him elucidate on… stuff.

Our first date is off on the wrong foot, with each of us wandering in confused circles around Rosslyn station. When we finally find each other, I immediately realize why I had trouble.

I fib about my height as often as the next person (read: always). According to the chart my 5’11 doctor keeps, I’m not 5’3. I’m 5’2 and 3/4. Sam on the other hand has unfairly claimed a solid six inches of open airspace that his body does not occupy. I’m a bit miffed at this blatant lie but he has these huge, glassy dark brown eyes…and a distinctly squirrel-like look to him that makes him seem more like a Disney character than a date.

Sam looks up  at me (ok straight ahead, but it felt like up) and sort of squeaks, “So what’s the news?”

I don’t know how I’m supposed to answer that question, so I pretend he asked me something normal and the standard small talk commences. Throughout the awkward pauses that occur so naturally on first dates, he fixes me with a blank but intent stare, like my golden retreiver does when I stop petting her.

All in all, the date doesn’t go horribly, and he likes chocolate and peanut butter (yes I asked), so I agree to see a Matt Damon movie with him next weekend. I really want to see the movie and as you’ll see, Matt Damon has a tendency to pop up unexpectedly in my dating life. I don’t think he’s marriage materials, or even third date material in all likelihood, but I’m not about to write off a perfectly precious Reese’s lover.

As I arrive at the Courthouse movie theater, it’s raining so everyone is huddled quietly together with their heads down outside. Sam slips up beside me and asks, “What’s the news?” Having forgotten about this little idiosyncrasy, I respond literally, and we spend the entirety of the previews discussing current events. Not a great start.

As often happens, the floor below my seat was sticky, so I kept my purse in my lap. Perhaps subconsciously I didn’t want to seem too… open… so I sat with my hands folded on my purse, legs crossed, like a little old lady waiting for the bus.

I should also mention that I had been running for a train as we left the last date, so there had been no good night hug, kiss or handshake… no breaking the touch barrier of any sort. So imagine my surprise when during the movie has arm drops onto my thigh, palm up, waiting like a giant cartoon question mark.

I do what any nice, but not too nice, girl would do. I freeze. I sit with my hands clutching my purse, eyes glued to Matt Damon, especially when I feel Sam looking over at me. I can’t decide whether to shake him off or say something, so I just pretend I hadn’t noticed anything. My dog similarly places her paw on my leg when I’m not paying enough attention, so I wonder if he wants me to scratch behind his ear. Thankfully the rational side of me stays put.

Sam finally moves his arm back to his side of the divider, although he left that question out there way longer than I ever expected. Since it’s still raining when we leave the theater and he starts to walk me to my car, I make some fuss about my hair, give him a quick hug and run for the car.

~~~~

Unsurprisingly, I never heard from Sam again perhaps because I left him walk home in the rain, or because I didn’t offer him a treat for being good. I may never know exactly why, but kids, Sam is certainly not your father.

Your Father Isn’t…DaddYO04

27 Jul

This guy, I think his name was Greg, gchats me every morning. The conversation goes something like this:

DaddYO04: Hey you!

Me: Hi

DaddYO04: how are you this morning?

Me: I’m great, how are you?

DaddYO04:   : )

Occasionally, he’ll ask me out.

DaddYO04: Hey you!

Me: Hi

DaddYO04: how are you this morning?

Me: I’m great, how are you?

DaddYO04: We should meet up for a drink sometime.

I’ve been through this enough times that I just go along, knowing full well how this will play out. I also have a strict policy against planning the first date, so I refuse to nudge things along (Bars in DC are like coffee shops in Seattle; if you wandered the city blindfolded, you’d be more likely to stumble onto an outdoor patio than into traffic. Pick one, dude).

Me: Sure, I’d like that.

DaddYO04: Yea. : )

And then I don’t hear from him again until tomorrow and we begin at the top.

At first I thought it was a bit odd to ask someone out when your only conversations involve less vocabulary than a Dr. Seuss book but gradually this has become a part of my morning routine, like brushing my teeth and cursing the bathroom door jam when I stub my toe.

~~~~

It’s now been four months. I’m going to guess that DaddYO04 isn’t your father kids.

Your Father Isn’t… Michael

26 Jul

The first date I went on after joining OkCupid was with Michael. I was new to the scene, the guy seemed cute and very unserial killer-like and I thought we might have some chemistry. I do not have to admit here that the deciding factor was the suggestion we meet at Baked & Wired.

Our date is scheduled for a freakishly warm March Saturday, so I convince my roommate to head to Georgetown with me, hang out for an hour and be my escape plan at exactly 3pm. Being a good sport and I’m sure concerned for my safety, not the cupcake I promised to bring her and the laugh she was sure she would have at my expense, she agrees.

I’m glad she did because walking down the canal path, I find myself experiencing unexpected butterflies. I can’t believe how nervous I am, considering it’s someone I have never met before, will probably never run into again and have already established I have enough in common with that we could spend an hour together discussing these commonalities in person. Plus, there will be cupcakes.

Still, my instinct to flee is strong. Claire patiently tells me that no, I cannot call in sick to a date and that yes, it is too late to go home, he’s already seen us. With a hug and a pat on the cheek, I’m off on my first off-line online date, and I feel much like a toddler getting dropped off at preschool… equal parts nervous, excited, and bewildered, while also wondering how long until Mom Claire comes back to get me.

At first blush, Michael is sweet, respectful and confident. As we move through the line, admiring the rows of gigantic cupcakes, I start to relax. “I can do this,” I think as I glance up at Michael. “He’s perfectly nice, a med student at Georgetown, so clearly not an idiot, and he seems like he has good taste.”

I’m lost in my growing admiration for Michael when he interrupts my thoughts. “What do you want to order?” he prods me gently. “They have chocolate and peanut butter. What more can a girl ask for?” I reply, trying my best to look as cute and skinny as a girl ordering a peanut butter-flavored 2 pound cupcake possibly can.

“I hate peanut butter, especially with chocolate, but if that’s what you want, good for you.” I can’t help but look around for Ashton Kutcher. One of my great loves in life is the chocolate-peanut butter combo; so much so that my future kids better be damn cute if they want to outrank it and my future husband can hope for a close second at best. I resist the urge to ask if he also hates puppies and Santa.

We sit down to eat our cupcakes (he got red velvet) and talk about our weekends. I’m just getting started on my brilliant theory as to why happy hour was the best invention ever when he matter-of-factly interjects that he doesn’t drink. Ever. At all. Now, I’m no lush, but I enjoy my cold beer with friends after a long week. I’m also new to this whole dating scene, but interrupting a girl’s ode to reasonably priced cocktails with stories about how you love to go to parties to “see what stupid things my friends will do,” strikes me as an odd tactic. This prompts my first glance at the clock. It’s been ten minutes.

I let him regale me with stories about laughs at the expense of his inebriated (and slightly more interesting) friends, and steer the conversation towards his career. What med student doesn’t get all McDreamy when talking about why they wanted to be a doctor, and all the people they want to help, right? Cure cancer, save little kids, etc. All in a days work, right?

“I want to be a plastic surgeon.”

Not the answer I was hoping for, but I’m sure there’s a need for people to help heal victims badly burned in tragic accidents or mangled by some psycho they met on a dating site.

“It’s good money. Everyone needs a little nip and tuck eventually.”

Time check: 2:20.

I struggle through  the rest of the date by pretending he’s from an alien race and I need to understand his ways if I want to save the planet from destruction. It works surprisingly well.

Finally, it’s 3 and I feel my purse vibrate with Claire’s fake meet up text. I make my excuse to leave, but of course nothing is quite that easy with this guy. He asks if he can walk me to where ever I’m meeting my roommate, which of course we hadn’t established. I pick a place (close) and breathe a sigh of relief as she walks up to us. I’ve never loved Claire so much in my life, but now I have to somehow make this date end.

[Author’s Note: I want to preface this. I had been in the process of doing hiring interviews for work all that week. I swear, that’s the only reason I did this and it was entirely involuntary.]

Michael starts to slowly lean towards me, finally unsure of himself for the first time all day, and in his moment of hesitation I instinctively thrust out my hand, grasp his in a firm shake, and say, “Thank you for the cupcake. I’ll be in touch.”

Claire chokes and stumbles away, clutching her sides in poorly concealed laughter. At this moment, I love her slightly less.

As Michael finally departs, feelings of relief and incredulous survival wash over me. That wasn’t so bad.

~~~~

Believe it or not, Michael later asked me out on a second date and his surprise even seemed genuine when I gently turned him down. Needless to say, Michael is not your father, kids.

How I Didn’t Meet Your Father

26 Jul

Welcome to How I Didn’t Meet Your Father (HIDMYF). I’m doing this because after an… interesting… foray into online dating, my friends begged me to make a blog of my exploits. Don’t get the wrong idea. I’m no Washingtonienne, and the only scandal you’re likely to uncover is just what I’ll go through for some free food.

Yes, I’m sure there are better ways to meet the eligible bachelors of the metro DC area but I’ve found that this town is chock full of awesome single ladies who are equally befuddled as to where the reported legions of smart, handsome, powerful young men could possibly be hiding (Answer: Town on a Saturday night).

So with this blog, I’m taking a leap of faith. I’m assuming that like Ted on How I Met Your Mother, one of these days I will meet my future children’s father. I’m also taking a -much smaller- leap of faith that whoever he is, he will not be one of these winners I’ve dated so far.