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The Slow Journey to Find My “+1”

March 16, 2009

I am beginning to wonder if it is me. I have gone on a series of dates that have been bad, awkward or both. There was Kate, my favorite cocktail story to tell, who is married and has a warrant for her arrest. Then there was another girl (who will remain nameless due to her uniqueness of her name) who shared and drank too much – especially for a first date.

Then there was Kristina. Kristina had flashes of potentially being a great girlfriend. She loved LOST, had a masters degree, served a spectacular Syrah, and was working in a field where people are underpaid and unappreciated. Even though we went on four dates, I ignored my personal red flags throughout. She was insecure, shy, preferred to communicate via text, and went on the raw diet while I was dating her. During our fourth date I knew that I would have to end it with her but I still leaned into what would be our first and last kiss. When I let her know that I didn’t want to see her anymore, I lied and I told her that I wasn’t ready to date but that she was really great.

Two days after my last date with Kristina, I met Teresa for drinks at my favorite bar in my neighborhood. I was really excited about Teresa. She wrote really profound things in her profile and our emails before we dated were awesome. Great rapport. Great insight. I was very excited to meet her in person.

Now, there are no guidelines for what you do when you meet someone in person for the first time. So I always let the girl decide on how she wants to greet me. Half the people give me a handshake, about 40 percent just sit down, and the rare 10 percent give me a hug. Though I prefer the handshake, I cannot help but feel weird about it. It feels like we are about to negotiate a contract.

When Teresa came into Smith, I stood up, received her handshake, and ordered our drinks. The evening proceeded with the usual inquires about family, jobs, friends, trips, music, TV shows, and other inane details of one’s life. And I was surprised when she ordered her second vodka tonic because she had mentioned to me that she was only going to have one. This was a good sign. Afterward, we planned a dinner for the following week.

The second date was doomed from the beginning. I found out beforehand that Kelli had planned a happy hour at the same restaurant, an hour before my date. I told her that if she saw me and Teresa, to completely ignore us. Of course, as I am walking with Teresa, out of the corner of my eye I see Kelli in the parking lot, laughing her ass off. I asked her what she wanted to drink – wine by the glass, beer, cocktails, or a bottle of wine. She suggested a bottle of a dry white wine. I ordered the port chop (which I only mention because it changed my life and was the best part of the date) and she ordered the trout. She was drinking her wine very slowly and after dessert (grapefruit sorbet – not very good), which she chose, Teresa still has a full glass of wine and there was wine still left in the bottle. I had been hitting the wine pretty hard because the date was completely awkward and any rapport we had a week prior was gone. So with wine in her glass and wine in the bottle, she says, “Shall we get going?”

I say, “Yes.”

Luckily we took separate cars and without a handshake or a hug we parted. I headed to P & K’s to talk about the most awkward date ever. All my friends consistently tell me I am a catch. But I am beginning to wonder if they are more like my parents and support me no matter what. I also wonder if the awkwardness is being caused by me. I know I am not in a great space for a relationship but I feel like now is the time to make something happen. Maybe I am projecting. I haven’t ruled that out. At the very least, I know I am heading back to the Sandpoint Grill soon for that pork chop – even if it is without my +1.

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One comment

  1. I am finally catching up on your blog. Always love reading your writing. You will figure the +1 thing out one of these days. I never would have thought that at the ages of 27-28, between the four of us from our group, only one of us would be married. Oh well.



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