I don’t have a point system for dates. Really I don’t. But if I did he would’ve been picking up lots of points in advance of the actual date. Which I know can be problematic in its own weird way because then I was predisposed to like him.
He asked me out with certainty. No, “gee, maybe we could meet sometime.” And then asked me when I’d be available. We very quickly settled on a night. He said he’d come up with a plan and email me the details. A day later he emailed me a time/place. In the email he said he had looked for someplace in my neighborhood or close by but honestly didn’t know of anywhere (he’s relatively new to NYC and lives in a completely different part of the city). He didn’t want to pick some random place out of Zagats. He would prefer to go to someplace he knows is good.
He got several points for all of that. Points for the certainty. Points for the being prompt and on point and decisive. Points for knowing what he likes. And I’m with him on this. For a first date, I really don’t want to go to some random bar I’ve never been to before. As much as I love trying out new bars and restaurants, I would never suggest someone meet me someplace that I’d never tried before.
All that said, the date started really slow. SLOW. We’re talking Chinese water torture slow. Now, I admit, some of that was my fault. I was just so tired. My chronic insomnia has been bad lately. But he didn’t seem to have much to say, which is odd as he was really chatty when we spoke on the phone. And let me be clear, this is a very smart guy. Very smart, very interesting, very talented.
Eventually things took off and we had a relatively decent conversation. It wasn’t super exciting, honestly. And there was a certain lack of something. I wasn’t feeling the chemistry. But, but, but…
OK, I’m just going to say it. I sat there last night and while he and I were talking I started to think of this article I read several months ago in the Atlantic. It was all about how smart women should settle. How the zing of romantic love fades over time and that we should be looking for things beyond the zing. And so as he and I sat there and had our zingless chat I thought about all of the wonderful qualities that I think he probably possesses. I say think as it was just a first date so I don’t know.
Towards the end of the date he very directly asked me out again. He suggested several nights and said he’d like to take me out to dinner. Again, it was the kind of direct invitation that I find attractive. And so I said yes. Not because it was a great date, but because he’d racked up so many points (I know that makes no sense) and because maybe the zing really is something I need to stop looking for. Maybe. It certainly hasn’t been good to me in the past.
Tags: first date, romantic love, settle