A friend came by with soup and juice, for which I was grateful. More for the company than for the soup and juice. She mentioned a couple dates she’d been on recently and so I asked how they went. She sighed and said the dates were fine, but… And then she looked frustrated. They were fine, and she wanted that to be enough. But it wasn’t. And I could tell that she was struggling with that, in some way.
So I told her this story, about a running joke I had with an old friend. I’d go on a date. She’d ask how it was. And then, before I could answer, she’d say, “let me guess, ‘it was fine‘.” And I’d say, yeah, it was fine.
Then she’d say something about how all of my dates couldn’t be fine.
But they were, mostly. Over the years I’ve gone on a lot of dates. With a lot of different guys. A lot. And most of them were perfectly nice men. Most of them were attractive enough, smart, funny, successful – all the good stuff. And most of them were kind to me during the date.
Sure, I’ve had some truly horrific dates. But those were the minority, which is why I don’t like to dwell on them too much, here.
But, there just haven’t been too many times when I’ve left the first (or second) date thinking, Damn, I can’t wait to see him again. Maybe 15 times in the last decade. Tops. In other words, we’re talking a very low % of my total dates. Very. Low. And, um, I think that this is normal or at least reasonable. I’m not a cold-hearted bitch. Rather, I’m cautious with my heart. I get that there are people who go all gushy over every single date. Well, I get it, but I don’t get it.
Now, I don’t know what other people expect from dates or relationships. Really I don’t. Because sometimes I read shit other people write, here in the comments and on other blogs, and I shake my head in confusion. But I know what I expect. And for me, baseline = I need to/want to/believe that I deserve to be excited about seeing that new man in my life. To be a little giddy with anticipation about our next date. For starters.
I want someone who I like with a capital L. Who I can maybe grow to love.
Because otherwise, we’re really just talking about finding a pleasant dinner companion who’s a decent lay. Which isn’t that hard.
In other words, fine isn’t good enough for me. Never has been and it never will be.
Which is what I told my friend. The first one. The one who sighed when I asked her about her recent dates. Maybe not in those exact words. Followed up by something about how unrealistic it is to expect things to be different. That love is rare. And that, once you’ve experienced it, you’re not willing to settle for something substandard.
And we both kinda nodded in agreement. And frustration.
Tags: date, good date, love, second date