The First Date Only Project

My Saturday Juggling Act May 16, 2010

Filed under: First date — Firstdateonly @ 9:23 pm
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I’m still nursing my hangover from last night, but I have to say… it was well worth it. An interesting weekend to say the least. Saturday night was meant to go like this:

Afternoon date (first date only, from the original ad)

Evening date

Engagement party for a friend

I just wanted to see if it could all be done. And possibly like the idea that I’m scheduling my life into a sort of bad sitcom, in which ridiculous and implausible situations take place, with hilarious mishaps resulting.

The afternoon date cancelled on me, which is just as well. He and I have rescheduled for next Wednesday and I’m looking forward to it. He’s French, and (I think) pretty hot. I have a thing for French guys… or maybe it’s just that I haven’t spoken French much since I moved here and I really enjoy the practice.

Anyway, it’s just as well that he cancelled because I ended up spending most of the afternoon talking to another guy who responded to the emo heart ad. And he is so great. He’s incredibly attractive and we get on annoyingly well. After talking online and texting for awhile, he called me and we talked for over an hour. We just really click. He’s funny and, it sounds ridiculously cliché but I feel like he “gets” me and we’ve known each other forever. He’s not really looking for a relationship and to be honest, I’m perfectly happy with the idea of just being friends.

So after my long chat with him, I got ready for my date (which I nearly forgot about and was late for).

The guy: responded to the emo ad, seemed to have a good sense of humour. Half American. Writer. Humorous email exchanges for the last week or so.

We met up in Old Street and went to Electricity Showroom. First impression: I could tell it was him, but for some reason he looked… different than I expected. He was also nervous. Very nervous. I forget that people get nervous on dates, because I usually just don’t at all. Maybe it’s just when I really don’t give a shit. And I definitely did not.

It was terribly, terribly awkward. The conversation did not flow, and I found myself drinking a lot more quickly than I normally would have because raising my glass to my mouth made me feel better than enduring the deafening silences. I thought about sabotaging the date, and realllllly drawing out those awkward moments, but I just couldn’t do it… when I feel uncomfortable I get far more chatty and funny and probably accidentally more flirty (which is possibly why guys don’t realise what a terrible time I’m having). There was a lot of that. He was just, I don’t know, a bit odd, just a very nervous person. He kept playing with the candle on the table, almost compulsively putting his hand over it, moving it away, putting it back… I just wanted to grab it from him. Oh, and he kept staring blatantly at my boobs. There’s really not much to see there. And it’s not like I was wearing anything particularly revealing. I’m not sure what he was looking for.

Again, in an attempt to stop being completely overly critical, he was a perfectly nice guy. And it definitely got less terrible after a pint or so, but I just wasn’t interested in drawing it out. Fourth first date only: FAIL. Luckily, I had the engagement party as an excuse to get out, after only 2 pints and an hour and a half of insufferable conversation. I got out real quick, with just a peck on the cheek.

On the way over to the party, the guy I’d spoken to in the afternoon and I texted back and forth a bit. I was already a bit tipsy (no dinner + 2 pints) and tried to get him to come out. He works excessively, though, and couldn’t. So I went to the party, and in between text flirting with him, I met a friend of my engaged friend, who is quite cute, and we flirted the whole evening. Drunk me spent a good hour or so jokingly trying to convince him that a giant elephant piece of artwork was actually a pinata, and that it was definitely a great idea to go kick it and see if there was candy inside. Thankfully, he did not. Though the bouncer started to get concerned about us lurking near the Art and advised us to move.

Cute friend had to get the last tube back, and I decided it would be sensible to do the same. Okay, so I actually was hoping that maybe we’d make out a little bit. And, yes, we did. Silly drunk boy was so distracted he almost missed his stop, and then had to rush off and said “Oh shit, I forgot to get your number… well, um, I’ll ask (our mutual friend)”. (I spoke to our friend this morning, who said that the guy had told him he was really into me, so he’s going to hook us up, apparently)

So a brief summary of this weekend:

1.One date- bad

2.One date rescheduled for next week

3.One snog- good

4.Many online conversations, texts, phonecalls with a new guy- excellent.

Photo source


Third 1st date. Uh oh. March 25, 2010

Filed under: First date — Firstdateonly @ 12:14 pm
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So, the first two first dates I went on were more or less what I expected- fun enough, but also easy to let it go after just one. Unfortunately, this third one was a bit different. I actually quite liked him. Shit.

We agreed to meet up last night at 7 in Covent Garden for drinks. I was at a work do beforehand and briefly considered “wouldn’t it be funny if I showed up drunk to my date…” but decided against it. I got there on time, and waited for about 10 minutes before I started getting slightly annoyed. Texted him to say I was there. It turned out he already was as well and we just hadn’t recognised each other.

So this guy: I had a good feeling about him before I met him, maybe it was the distinctly “not weird or obsessive” vibe that set him apart from the other candidates.  He’s 32, works in something vaguely politics-related, and is tall. Very tall. 6’6, in fact. And quite handsome. Adorable Northern accent. Great smile. Sigh.

We had a pint at the Porterhouse– it was really busy, especially for a Wednesday night, but finally we found a spot to perch. It only took about 5 minutes before he admitted to how much he knew about me by googling me. I jokingly accused him of being a stalker, but let’s be honest, I would have done the same had he not had such a common name. Unfortunately for me, it turns out I am the only person with my name on the internet, and I am plastered all over it. I suppose it’s a good thing I don’t have anything to hide.

We got on really well immediately. We told stories about terrible first dates (I told him about the Auto Show Date, and he told me about once when he discovered a date rifling through his bag to make sure he wasn’t a spy). He ended an 11 year relationship only a year ago… hence the interest in the *just a first date* concept. We talked a lot about politics and definitely have a lot in common work/interests-wise.

Note to self: you cannot drink as much or as fast as a 6’6 tall man. Got drunk. Relatively quickly. But I think (hope) I kept my composure. After a couple of drinks we left to get dinner. Outside the bar, he leaned down and kissed me… mmmm. Aside from the awkwardness involved in kissing someone over a foot taller than me, it was really good. I had definitely wanted to do that since I met him. I’m getting that butterfly-y feeling in my stomach thinking about it now. Eeee.

We went to Wahaca around the corner for Mexican food. (I am slightly obsessed with burritos. Definitely the #1 thing I miss about the states.) This of course also included margaritas. I have to admit, it’s a bit fuzzy from that point. But I do know that a. I texted a friend of mine saying how well the date was going, and I am near positive he saw it over my shoulder as he returned from the toilet and b. I didn’t end up finishing my food because I was too busy talking. I hope I said anything interesting. Or at least coherent.

We didn’t leave the restaurant until past midnight, and apparently it didn’t occur to me that oh yeah, I had to work the next day, because we ended up at Belushi’s, of all places, for a last drink. He had paid for everything else throughout the date but let me get this one (thank you). We didn’t even drink them, anyway, though, because we spent awhile longer just makin’ out. It started to rain a bit and he pushed me into a doorway, held me against the wall. It was all very, very sexy. He asked me to come home with him but I declined, much as I didn’t want the evening to end.

Ahhh I wish he hadn’t been so great! When emailing each other beforehand to plan the date, he had asked when we should meet up to  “crash and burn in a spectacular fashion”. Unfortunately there was no crashing. Even less burning. It was actually just a really great first date, with someone that I would totally like to see again.

He texted while I was on the bus ride home and joked that he *might* consider to extending to a 2nd even so that we can collectively screw it up. I promised that if given the chance, I would do my very best to fuck up.

I’m not sure how much longer I can continue doing this. Having gone out drinking twice on weeknights this week, I am SHATTERED. And seriously, it is not easy to meet someone who’s attractive, has a great sense of humour, is confident and well educated and interesting… and think, welp, that was fun, but that was enough.  I sure do wish he had more than just the “long term ex” fatal flaw. He was annoyingly awesome.


Beardy McIrish(?)man in Camden March 23, 2010

Filed under: First date — Firstdateonly @ 2:46 pm
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I’ve given myself a bit of a ridiculous schedule this week: a date last night, one Wednesday, and a third on Friday. I’m wondering when/if I’ll get first date fatigue.

So the one last night. It was honestly exactly what I’m looking for through this project. A lot of fun. But not too much fun.

I wasn’t sure what to expect this guy to be like. His emails were… odd. To say the least. Lots of bullet points and seemingly unrelated statements. But he said he was Irish and I’m a sucker for the accent so I decided to give it a go.

We agreed to meet in Camden for drinks. He was 15 minutes late. And didn’t look a thing like his picture (I suppose the same face was under there somewhere, but with added beard I probably wouldn’t have found it on my own). He looked very Camden, all skinny-jeaned and trendy glasses-ed.  And his accent surprised me- very, very London, not Irish at all.

The date didn’t get off to a fantastic start. We went to the Elephant’s Head on Camden High Street, got a couple pints of Guinness and he not long afterwards launched into a long thing about how he wanted to be shot into space when he died so the aliens would put him back together or something. I think it was a long and convoluted joke, but I’m really not sure. Oh, and have I mentioned he was wearing a Star Trek badge?

But it did get infinitely better from there. I liked that he swore a lot, as I myself have been known to drop numerous f-bombs and it makes me feel awkward if people think that swearing isn’t polite or whatever. After a couple of pints, we moved to one of my old favourites, the Good Mixer. Ah, how it still smells just faintly of vomit and piss. I do love it so.

And we had a great time. Bizarro space story aside, he was really very fun and easy to talk to. We talked a lot about music and funny stories from childhood and drunken mishaps. It turns out, by the way, that he is indeed Irish but only lived in Ireland from age 10-20 and somehow managed to hold onto his London accent. Confusing, but interesting.

At no point did I find myself dropping into what I have discovered is my dating coping mechanism- endlessly joking about how amazing I am. I really do wonder why it is that I do this, and you’d think it would be a turnoff to guys, but I suppose I do it in more of a “charming and funny” way than an “obnoxious and egotistical” way. I suppose maybe it’s better to do that than tell my “drunkenly puked on my friend’s shoes” story or my “killed a baby pigeon” story. Oh wait, both of those came out last night. I’ve got no mental filter.

Even after our last drink we continued to talk until I realised it was 12:30am on a school night and decided it might be wise to get a night bus home. He walked me to the bus stop and we stood kind of a safe distance apart from each other, until he said something about whether he could kiss me. I allowed it. Wow! A very, very pleasant surprise. Until, naturally, a drunk homeless guy tried to interrupt us asking for change. Not now, guy, bad timing. Jeez.

We continued kissing for awhile (my bus took AGES to arrive) and he asked if I was interested in going to a gig this weekend. It didn’t seem necessary with him (as it did with Hampstead guy) to drive home the ONLY ONE DATE notion, so I said I might be into it.

So I have a dilemma now. I had a lot of fun last night. And while most of the evening I was thinking, yeah I might like him to become one of my friends, he actually turned out to be a fab kisser.

Though, fact of the matter is that I wouldn’t actually date date him. I’ll be honest, the whole space and Star Trek thing… yeah, not really gonna do it for me. He also seemed genuinely surprised that A. I would go out with him to begin with at all and B. That it would be totally easy and fun and he wasn’t socially awkward around me.

So perhaps best just to leave it at the one date, though I really do want to make sure that he knows I had a great time and I’m not blowing him off because I’m such a bitch. Or maybe *just* a second date as well?


First date: Hampstead Guy March 20, 2010

Filed under: First date — Firstdateonly @ 8:02 pm
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My first and DEFINITELY ONLY date with Hampstead Guy was today.

I met up with a friend at Borough Market beforehand, and discussed the possibilities of the date. She also works in finance (he’s a banker) and said she was certain she could determine exactly what type of guy he’d be based on what type of work he did. “So he works on six spreadsheets at a time… he’s a trader. Which means there are two possibilities: either he’s a nerdy, socially awkward maths guy who has started to think he’s pretty cool because he makes a lot of money. Or he was a pretty cool guy and then started to make a lot of money and became incredibly arrogant. Judging by his excessive texts, I’d bet money it’s the former.” Spot on.

I arrived 15 minutes late to our date (my friend and I decided I might as well do lots of “date no’s” on this date as I didn’t expect it to go well). He looked like his picture… except shorter than I expected, and chubbier.  First impression: Not good.

We walked to the pub (The Freemasons Arms), where we had whatever-meal-you-call-it-when-it’s-3pm. I had pizza (carbo loading for a long run tomorrow!) and we shared a bottle of wine, and then an amazing brownie with ice cream.

I’m going to do my best not to be overly critical, because he was honestly a really, really nice guy. We chatted and had nice banter, he asked me a lot about myself and I talked away. It probably would have been a really good date had I been remotely attracted to him. But I really wasn’t. So I tried a bit of date sabotage. I mentioned my millionaire Italian exboyfriend (and that he had given me the bracelet I was wearing). I- no joke- showed him that when I’m really full I can make my belly look pregnant (and also mentioned that I used to occasionally try to freak out my exes with this). I talked endlessly about myself. Aren’t these all things that are supposed to put people off? Unfortunately, it turns out that my date sabotage tactics are incredibly endearing. Dammit.

We left the pub and started walking through Hampstead Heath towards the overground station. I started dreading that he might try to kiss me, but just prayed that he might be too much of a gentleman (or too shy). Nope. As soon as there were fewer people around, he started to put his arm around me (I elbowed him in the stomach) and then he turned me to kiss him. I didn’t know how to get out of it, so I let it happen.

And I got a whiff of an unmistakable odour. Eau de Fat Steve.

I should probably explain. Fat Steve was a guy who lived in my rez in first year. He, as you probably interpreted, was really very overweight. And the showers in our rez were very small, and I do wonder if he fit in them. Possibly not, and this would explain his incredible odour. Something like stale body odour, mixed with a bit of foot and possibly some rotting junk food. I once had to go into his room, and was seriously overcome with this stench. I have never forgotten it.

Hampstead Guy smelled- just slightly- like Fat Steve. It didn’t help that I wasn’t attracted to him at all to begin with, but kissing him and smelling this was pretty difficult. I’ll give him some credit, he wasn’t the worst kisser in the world, but I suppose that having to close my eyes, hold my breath, and think of someone else probably takes away from the kissing experience.

We walked through the Heath, with him occasionally trying his “ignore-your-defensive-elbows-and-try-to-take-you-in-my-arms” kissing approach. Finally we got to Gospel Oak Station. It was closed, and we’d have to walk one further to Hampstead Heath Station. Dammit.

He joked about our possible second date. I told him the rules. JUST FIRST DATES, YO. He was pretty confident that this one was good enough to merit a second, and in fact, how did I know for sure that I wouldn’t want this to go somewhere, that this could in fact *be something*? I walked faster, and began talking non-stop (about how super amazing I am at all aspects of life) hoping this was deter further kissing attempts.

Finally we got to the station. He asked what I was doing tomorrow after my run, or later during the week. Conveniently (and actually, not at all untrue), I am actually very busy. So he suggested maybe we meet up next weekend. I said coyly that we’ll see.

He texted me when I got home, saying that I’m awesome and that it was really great to spend time with me today.

At least he can’t take it personally when I don’t respond. I warned him that was how it would be.

I might go brush my teeth now.