Second First Date
Name: Hank (named changed to something that makes me laugh)
Info: 32, Electrical Engineer, likes Thunder basketball, indie music, podcasts, stand-up comedy, and his Nigerian family.
Date: Thursday night drinks at a pub in Midtown
Background: We had emailed a few times, texted mainly about where to meet and when.
Time elapsed from first contact to meeting up: 5 days
Disclaimer: I am not a super affectionate person until we have established a solid friendship/relationship. I can give a firm handshake or a Christian side-hug, but I typically maintain a fairly awkward stance until a certain point.
I'm there a little early because I was coming from a meeting downtown. I'm standing in the lobby reading a Gazette and in comes Hank.
Cara: *puts down paper* Hi, I'm Cara *extends hand*
Hank: I'm Hank *overwhelming full-frontal hug* (Please ask for a demo next time you see me.)
Cara: (inner dialogue) un...com...fortable....
---we are seated---
We have easy conversation...talking about the Thunder and podcasts we enjoy...this goes on for about an hour.
At this point I notice that Hank has never taken off his jacket. This is where I should tell you that Hank may have embellished a few things about himself on his profile...superficially speaking. After meeting him, it seemed that the majority of his pictures were a few years old. Not a big deal. But as the night went on, it became apparent through Hank's body language that he wasn't very comfortable in his skin. Or his clothes. As superficial as it may sound, those are both things that are important to me.
So, we talk for about 2 hours total. He pays for my drink and we thank each other for the conversation. He gives me another no-way-out full-frontal hug. I give the double-back-pat-tap-out escape. It works.
At this point. I wasn't sure what to do. I felt like either I had really high standards, was being really picky or was setting everyone up to fail. I wondered if my expectations of what it would be like to start over with a new person and start from scratch were too overwhelming. So even though I didn't feel a connection with Hank, I didn't have a bad time...and we had a lot in common...so I agreed to meet him again.
Second date: Kaisers on a Saturday night for some ice cream.
*Note to self and everyone: if you don't feel like doing something, don't do it.
I meet Hank for some ice cream after doing homework all day. I'm exhausted and want to go bed early. Hank is completely jazzed about getting to hang out again. We hang out for about an hour and a half and I do the, "Well I think I'm going to call it a night." And Hank is not interested in calling it a night. He wants to hang out more. We compromise on a movie if there's one that starts in the next 30 minutes. (I'm hoping/praying there won't be one so I can go home.) I'm reading through the list of showtimes and get to Wreck It Ralph. Hank exclaims: "I WANT TO SEE THAT!" I give him a "Whoa, Nelly" face and ask, "Are you a gamer, Hank?" Hank answers: "Uhhhhhhhh. Not really. I mean, I did buy the new Halo 4 this week but I've only played it like....30 minutes." (Yea right, Hank.) Hank later confesses to playing online against 10 year olds and yelling at them in his XBOX headset. See ya later, Hank.
We go to the movie. I sit with my arms folded and legs crossed away from Hank. It's at this point I realize that I've made a mistake. I'm obviously not interested in this guy and instead of cutting the cord over ice cream, I'm now stuck sitting through a children's movie next to someone who won't take off his jacket, who stays up til 3am playing video games, and who is 32 years old and absolutely loving Wreck It Ralph. And I'm using all the mental energy I have left to stay awake and send vibes to Hank to not even think about making a move on me in this movie theatre.
Oh the awkwardness. It's finally over and we're walking to our cars and it happens.
Hank: "Look. I know you're busy with school and you're stressed about your paper, but I really want to see you again. Soon."
Cara: "Uhhhhhhhhhhhhh. Look. How about we just keep playin' it like we've been playin' it?" (WHO SAYS THAT?! AND WHAT DOES THAT EVEN MEAN?!)
Hank: Cool! Cool. Awesome. *Not 1, but 2 full frontal hugs.*
I get in my car and leave as fast as possible. I feel so awkward. I bailed. I choked. I didn't have the guts to be honest and say, "I'm sorry Hank. I'm just not interested."
This goes on for 3 more days...Hank is jazzed and excited about hanging out again and I try to let him down easy. Finally, I just told him the truth and apologized. And he did not respond for 5 days. Then at 2am on a Sunday morning he sends me a drunken/sorrow filled text about how he's been really bummed out and hopes this doesn't mean goodbye forever.
And I don't respond.