The Dating Jitterbug: Lesson Two

I went on my date with WG.  I still have my liver!!

Did you know that I initially met WG on Valentine’s Day?  Well, we met with our eyes.  As noted in a previous post, the way he stared at me was a little alarming. After I thought about it, I decided that he was either attracted to me or very, very frightened by me, which is completely understandable.  I honestly didn’t think much about it until three weeks later, when I went back to the store.  And look where I am now…it only took two months to get a date with him!  At this rate, I’ll have gone through menopause before our second date.

WG has mentioned that he sometimes has social anxiety, but I didn’t get a sense of a real disorder, at least not during the date.  Apparently, he’s one of those people that likes to fill their time doing stuff and can exist on four hours of sleep.  I, on the other hand, don’t always have to keep busy and wish my body would allow me to get more than six hours of sleep a night.  And I noticed that he seemed a little critical of himself, so maybe he doesn’t always feel comfortable in his own skin.  Who hasn’t been there?  What he doesn’t know about me is that I have a large capacity to accept quirky energy as long as the person doesn’t cross that fine line into, for lack of a better term, the truly bizarre.

I’ve told myself in the past to be open to dating all types of guys, even though I might not feel an instant attraction. But I have my limits. One of my tests for physical attraction is to think about the guy touching me in a very neutral place. For example, I might imagine him touching my elbow, where the wrinkly skin has hardly any nerve endings. If I react badly to this dead spot, I know I don’t want him touching me anywhere else and we probably shouldn’t date.

WG lightly touched my arm, shoulder, and back at different times during our date.  He got some game!  Well, he still seemed a little tentative, especially after I slapped him in the face.  Nooo…I didn’t do that.  In truth, I reacted…very well.  Of course, I wondered to myself if it was true attraction or effects of the man drought I’ve been experiencing, but that’s that damn over thinking thing I do.

Other stuff I noticed?  He seemed gentlemanly and polite.  Ate with his mouth closed.  Was willing to get hit first in a crosswalk.  Suggested we walk in the sun as opposed to the shady side of the street because he thought it might be too cold for me.  And I think he only looked at his phone once.  He said he recently got texting capability for his dinosaur of a phone, so I knew he wasn’t obsessed with needing to stay in contact with the world, i.e. Facebook, Twitter.  As you can tell, I like good manners, especially the getting-hit-first thing.  But he didn’t ask me many questions about myself, nor did he counter with his own when I asked him questions.  I think a good conversation has a nice back and forth to it, but I can’t fully weigh in on this yet until we talk more.  The date didn’t last that long – I think he fit me in between doing his other “stuff”, which yes, could be taken as a bad sign.

I have a question.  Is it a female faux pas to pay for something during the date?  I mean, I was the one that asked him out.  He paid for coffee and dessert, and then we also ended up at Pinkberry, so I insisted on treating him.  The guy shouldn’t always pay, right?  I’m realizing that I’m not a big fan of trying to understand the rules of dating.  It takes my brain into overdrive, and I can already tell that it could lead to mental exhaustion.  Nothing good can come of it.  To break it down, if I am myself (within reason, at least in the beginning) and he doesn’t like me, then I have to move on and find someone that does.  It helps if you can learn to not take it personally, as pointed out by thelovemanifesto.  That makes sense to me.  And besides, I think that’s what Tina Fey would do.

When WG walked me to my car, he asked if I would like to go wine tasting some time.  He used the Proactive, Yet Vague move on me.  Hey, that’s my move!  But it worked and I said yes.  When we hugged goodbye, I couldn’t have predicted that I would experience one of the best hugs of my life.  I may not have dated all that much, but I’ve hugged a lot of guys of differing shapes, sizes, and heights.  I’m like the Hugging Bimbo. Do people still use the word bimbo?  Remember Huggy Bear? That would be a cute nickname if you’re into that sort of thing, which I’m definitely not.  Where was I?  Oh, yes.  I’m pretty short, so my face constantly gets smashed and my neck wrenched against a guy’s chest.  I’ve damaged guys’ windpipes because they leaned down too far at the same time I was lifting my shoulders to reach up as high as possible.  I like a solid and warm hug (unless it’s with the aforementioned creepy elbow toucher).  When WG and I embraced, my brain told me to let go after a few seconds, but my body and his unforeseen talent as a HuggyBear kept me from moving.  I literally could not let go even though my brain was saying release! release!!  To his credit, he didn’t call the cops on me.  Come on…I’m not saying I kept my claws wrapped around him in a five-minute death grip.  Or did I?  No, I’m pretty sure it lasted about five seconds.  Try it on someone and let me know if it feels a little too long.  But find someone willing.  A thrasher doesn’t make a good hugging experience.

By the way, other than the over hugging incident, I have no idea how I came across on the date.  He could very well think that I’m the weirdo.  And let’s face it, I am, but in a you-might-not-like-this-but-it’s-good-for-you kind of way.  Will there really be a second date?  I have no idea.  It’s been five days, and I haven’t heard from him.  But I’ll tell you this much: the next guy I hug is going to have some huge shoes to fill.


The Dating Jitterbug: Lesson One

After a few days of silence from WG (Wine Guy), I took the lead last week and followed up on our previous agreement to meet for coffee.  I left him a message one morning, asking when he might be free, but didn’t get any response from him that day.  After telling myself not to over think the situation, I realized that it might be a good idea to try and date different guys so that my neuroses would spread out a little more evenly rather than concentrate its full power on one person.

But how to find more dates without going the online dating route?  I don’t exactly appeal to the masses.  How would I describe myself?  I’m like Tina Fey’s Asian cousin – not exactly Tina in all her brilliance, but it’s as if we share some of the same genes.  Mm, that made more sense in my head.  Anyways, I do wear smart glasses like she does, so it means I’m pretty much just like her.  How about this:  I’m an ice cream flavor that appeals to very specific, sometimes odd people.  A scoop of vanilla with basil and chicken liver, anyone?  Hello?  And as I’ve mentioned before, every few years a guy comes along and thinks that flavor combination is intriguing.  When that happens, it’s in my best interest to take a critical look at his tastebuds.

Recently, a friend tried to jog my memory about the time we took a screenwriting class together when I was 19 years old:  “Remember that older guy in the class who was interested in you?  You said he wanted to build a home under the ground and that he only had the best of intentions for you.  You didn’t want to go back to the class after that.  Remember?”  I thought it was a little cruel of her to try and make me remember such a horrifying moment in my past.  Luckily, my memory was gifted enough to have blocked the whole thing and now I can use it as part of my ice cream analogy.

While I was in deep contemplation over all of these issues, WG called me the following day and left a message telling me which days he was free.  I made my friend listen to it.  She said, “He sounds nervous.”  So I gave her his name and number just in case he went mental on me and decided that my liver would taste pretty good, too.

No one eats my liver and gets away with it.

Close Encounters of the Fifth Kind

Four score and twenty years ago, I asked a guy out on a date.  Well, it was more like: “Next time you’re in L.A., give me a call if you want to hang out.”  I know.  Being proactively vague is a gift.  We ended up being together for 18 years.

Needless to say, I haven’t been on a date with someone new in quite a while.  When I became newly single, I had no interest in dating – it wouldn’t have been a good idea until I found my own footing again.  But I’m ready now and…rusty.  Extremely rusty.  It doesn’t help that I didn’t date that much before my last relationship.

Yesterday, I asked Wine Guy:  “Would you be interested in meeting for coffee sometime?”  Wow, I get more skilled as the decades fly by.  Wait.  Now that I think about it, it probably would have made more sense if I had asked him to meet up over a glass of wine.  Anyways, he said yes, we exchanged numbers and…now what?  I didn’t lock down a day and time.  Was I supposed to do that?  Why is this so awkward?  I feel like I just went on a job interview after being out of the workforce for twenty years.  Hi!  Please hire me!

Clearly, I will be muddling through this whole dating thing until I get the hang of it.  Or not.  In the meantime, I respectfully and cautiously join the rest of the muddlers out there.  Here’s to us.