Last night, I went on what can simply be described as a damned good date.
It wasn’t wildly romantic or sexually charged; if anything, it was a real-time study in how chemistry works…and how someone can become infinitely more attractive during the course of a single conversation.
To tell the truth, I wasn’t looking forward to the evening. I was still feeling a bit conflicted about the date prior, and feeling a bit “off” in general. Besides, there were about a dozen other things I was neglecting by going, and to top it off, this was the right swipe whose profile pic my good friend called “scary” (and I thought artsy) at first glance.
She may be right. I may be crazy. And it is not another lunatic I’m looking for.
Then again, she picked “Shirtless”, so…clearly we don’t have the same taste in men. Best to at least show up and see for myself.
At first glance, he was neither scary nor terribly artsy-looking. He was, at least, the 6’3″ he’d claimed to be (not a necessity, but always a perk). He was slightly more gray and grizzled than I recalled (fair, for 46), and was giving off a “sensitive guy” vibe that momentarily struck me as suspect…
Thankfully, we’d kept it simple: no elaborate dinner plans or long commutes, just a couple of artisanal drinks and the option of small bites at a bar in my hood. This could be blessedly brief, if necessary.
We toasted to the awkwardness that is Tinder, and dove in. The water was surprisingly warm.
I’m not sure if it was the shared interests (theater/film/music) or our similar upbringings (divorced parents/strong feminist moms/blended families), but my fatigue was soon forgotten in an increasingly enthusiastic and animated conversation that occasionally turned heads. Yes, we were THOSE people.
I’ve always felt that one of the most attractive qualities I’ve ever found in a man – or a friend, for that matter – is feeling understood; of not having to explain myself. It’s rare enough to be surprising when it happens, and enchanting each time. It’s like encountering a countryman (in my case, a kind and non-stupid American) while lost in a foreign land.
And for a girl who admittedly keeps her guard up, it was a welcome relaxing of the boundaries, as we riffed on everything from Sondheim (genius) to the dreaded “d**k pic” (he claims that every man has sent at least one in his lifetime…and agrees that unsolicited, they are about as welcome as a cat presenting a mouse it’s killed).
It was fun. It was funny. And it may have been kismet – or award-worthy game – when, while discussing unexpected musical influences, I referenced my own choice to record a live cover of Peter Gabriel’s “Sledgehammer”, and his eyes suddenly widened in shock.
Asking me to pause for a moment, he pulled out his phone. Swiftly scrolling through his iTunes, there it was: my single.
Apparently, an ex had introduced it to him as her favorite cover years ago (did you know I’ve got fans in Denmark? I didn’t), and it had quickly become one of his, too. Since he’d neglected to Google me pre-date, he’d entirely missed the connection…until I brought it up.
I know…too cute to be true. But since he then suggested we cut the date short so he could collect himself (while expressing that he’d definitely like a follow-up), I’m going to go with it.
And if it was game, he gets a slow-clap-standing-ovation from me, because now, I’m game, too.