Friday, April 30, 2010

Adventures in Speed Dating, II

I wasn’t very impressed with the selection of guys. There was the Low Talker, the Sloucher, the Chubby Kosher Guy.

Then there was Rico Suave – he didn’t exactly come off as a smooth operator, but we immediately hit it off. Funny, a little goofy, vivacious. He said I was a breath of fresh air. The six minutes flew by, and after our “date” it was time for a fifteen-minute break. He bought me a drink, we ate mini burgers together and simply enjoyed each other’s company until it was time to return to “date” the others.

The rest of the dates were duds compared to the colorful Rico. After the event ended, a few of us wound up back in the bar area, until he and I gradually found our own corner. My friends left one by one. He asked if I’d like to get another drink elsewhere – I said I’d be delighted. Or something a little less corny than that.

I don’t spend that much time in that part of the city, so when we walked past the Plaza Hotel fountain, I said we had to stop to admire it for a minute. He then confessed that he'd wanted to kiss me back in the bar – I said this would actually be a much better place for that. He remarked that it was a lovely, cinematic moment, and we kissed.

We went to a nearby bar for another drink. Earlier we’d started with wine, and had moved onto Manhattans. Hm, this could be dangerous. We talked, we smooched, we flirted. And before we knew it, it was 1:30 am, and definitely time to go home.

He insisted – he had to know when he could see me again. How about next Monday? A restaurant he really liked had a special event going on -- once he’d learned that I was a bit of a foodie, he knew instantly that he had to take me there. Nice – I like a man with some good city knowledge in his back pocket.

He texted me as soon as he got home, and for the next two days we exchanged texts, emails and (in his case) a phone message. He said he’d been thinking about me. He didn’t want to wait until Monday to see me.

At some point during the post speed-dating “date”, he mentioned that he thought my friends were really cool, and maybe he could set them up with some of his friends. He also volunteered the information that he was planning on choosing only me via the online matching system of the speed dating organizers. Aw, nice.

This morning, my friend Rita emailed me (we hadn’t spoken since the event):

We probably should have anticipated that there'd be ONE great guy at that speed dating thing, and we'd all want to at least see if it's a "match." I could see you liked Rico -- knowing my personality is more reserved I'm not sure if you could tell I liked him too.

Just wanted to let you know he asked if he could call me, and I gave him my number. Of course that could lead to nothing, as it usually does, or friendship or whatever, but I wouldn't want to keep that info from you. Not sure what we should do going forward--want to feel it out and see how it goes?


Thursday, April 29, 2010

Adventures in Speed Dating

My friend "Rita" and I had been talking about doing a speed dating event for ages - she had never been, and was encouraged when I had three matches at a recent event (never mind that none of those guys have remained in the picture...).

We set the date. She asked if she could invite another mutual friend, Stella. Sure. A few days later -- pure coincidence -- I found out that another friend, Mary, had signed up. And when I found out that Lucky Girl had never done one of these milestones-in-NY-dating? Well -- come along! The more the merrier!

There are some pros and some cons to doing a speed dating event with a gaggle of friends.

Pros: you can rehash over the lame dates afterwards.

Cons: you might like the same guy. And he might like both of you. Or all of you.


Sunday, April 25, 2010

My name is Loverville, and I'm a dateaholic (and date #167)

As I learned a few weeks ago: three dates in one day was overkill. I won't be doing that again anytime soon.

However: I'm already finding myself a bit overwhelmed with scheduling dates for this week. Here's what happened: a few weeks ago, I found that things seemed to be drying up on Match. Then the very fabulous Lucky Girl mentioned that she was on OK Cupid -- last time I tried that site, about two years ago, I didn't have much luck. Kooky guys wearing top hats and 21-year-olds living in mom's basement in Ronkonkoma just didn't appeal to me. I know, I'm so picky.

But it seems that the site - and the guys - have grown up a bit. The site is free, so what did I have to lose? I signed up, and started "favorite"-ing a few cute, interesting guys.

The first few guys I wrote to never wrote back. I wrote to a few more. In the meantime, I had some correspondence with a few more Match guys. Started talking about planning drinks.

Then -- I wouldn't exactly call it an avalanche, but thus began a small landslide of guys writing to me. Many of them seemed smart, interesting, cute -- they seemed more appropriate for me than the "maybe" guys I had already agreed to go out with, but it didn't feel right to cancel on those other guys.

So -- I'm currently looking at five dates planned for this week -- some of those will be lunch or coffee dates. I *do* realize that any of those could fall through at any given moment. In addition, there may be more dates added to the roster, but I'm going to try to avoid that.

I've come to realize something about myself: I think I like the planning and anticipation as much as the actual dates. (and sometimes more, if it turns out to be a lame date). I like that giddy feeling when I get a well-written, funny email from a new guy.

I know for sure that if one of these guys really pushed my buttons, I'd certainly be happy to give up the shopping. But for now? Well, a girl has to make the most of a situation, yes?

Why not put some of these off, you might ask? Actually -- for a few, I am. But for others, I worry that if I postpone them too long, they might lose interest. You know, strike while the iron is hot, and all that.


Date #167. "Neo" (seen above) was the first of my afternoon, mid-week coffee dates. I've decided that this is a great idea for those guys I'm not quite sure about -- this way, I don't lose an entire evening to a bad date. And if it turns out to be a decent date, I'd be happy to make date number two a proper grown-up date, as in, after dark and boozy.

Neo looked just like Keanu here -- dark hair, dark glasses (which was fitting -- it was sunny outside). Interesting guy. Some commonalities. A minus: he seemed to talk quite a lot, without always gauging my level of interest. Worth another shot, though.

He has emailed me since about getting together -- I just have to see where I can squeeze him in.

I've also had a second date with Sparky -- he planned a fun, thoughtful evening for us. I realized over a drink just how nice it was to have that dose of familiarity. Spent a fun few hours with him. Again, I'm still not really feeling fireworks, but I like him enough to see him again, which is all I need to know right now.

However: the best night of the week may have been with the fabulous Red (in town from the Left Coast) and her posse, along with Lucky Girl. A grand old time was had by all! See LG's hilarious writeup for all the lurid details.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Dates #165 & 166

I'm still a bit tipsy from tonight's date, so for the moment, I'm just going to throw this out there and see what sticks. Note: it just took about six attempts to spell the word "moment" correctly. Blame it on the wine.

Earlier this week: date #165. I'm blanking on a descriptive name for him, so let's just call him 165 for now. Good enough conversation. He's likable. A bit of smooching at the end. He asked me to get together this weekend, and I said yes.

There were no crazy fireworks the way there were on that first date with Bond (formerly known as BEST FIRST DATE EVER) -- but maybe that's okay? Maybe it's better to start with a small spark, rather than explosive pyrotechnics? We'll see.

It just hit me: he will now be known as Sparky.

Tonight's date, #166. Let's call him Tom -- I'll explain why in a moment. Tom and I started writing a week or so ago, and immediately had this fabulous online connection. We were intrigued by one another, and wanted to uncover every stone, but because of our schedules, we wouldn't be able to meet til tonight, Wednesday.

No problem -- the anticipation was fun. I just counted: in the course of a week, he sent me about 60-something emails, and I probably replied back each time. One day, we IMd for about two hours. At the same time, we were realistic in realizing that though we might like each other on paper, the in-person chemistry would either be there... or it wouldn't. And if it wasn't, we sensed we'd remain friends anyway.

Today was the day. I got my first email from him at 8 am -- he seemed as excited as I was. I even went out and bought a new dress, a very hot red wrap thing. As I walked to the wine bar to meet him, I realized I was nervous -- I couldn't remember the last time I was nervous about a date.

Long story short: we spent three hours talking, drinking, eating. We told stories, jokes, anecdotes. At times, I found myself wondering: how do you *know* when the chemistry is there? The fact that I was asking myself that meant that it was clearly lacking. I'm sure he felt the same way -- and that's fine.

Why the blog name Tom? He happens to look like my friend Shmutti's friend Tom, is all. "Her" Tom happens to be bald, gay and very dapper - I don't think my guy tonight was gay, but he certainly was dapper.

I DID have one really fabulous date this week: I met some of my favorite fellow bloggers, and had a blast! I met Lucky Girl (who already felt like an old buddy, as we'd been emailing quite a bit), Simone of Sex, Lies & Dating, KB in NYC, and Celeste of the Big Girl Blog. They all rock, big time -- smart, fun, vivacious. Ladies, if you're reading this -- great to meet you all, and hope to do it again soon!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Farewell to Bond.

In the most recent comments, a few people thought that I wrote off Bond too soon, and didn't give him enough of a chance. I replied:

Trust me, I liked Bond a LOT, and was very hopeful about him. I don't think I articulated the timeline about him very clearly here -- I didn't want to write him off at all, but felt that I had to once I sensed that he was distancing himself (while I stayed hopeful, in the back of my mind).

He pretty much went from "we have a great connection" and "I see something here" ... to radio silence. How else could I react, but to write him off? When you know, you know.

Turns out my gut was right - I got some "closure" this week. Details to come!

I was serious about this guy from the get-go. I got that very rare feeling on the first date that this could be someone really special.

And -- confession time -- I was so excited that I took down my Match profile after our first date. THAT'S how much I was willing to focus on him and only him. Premature? Probably. It's not like I told him I was taking down my profile. If he freaked out about it, I could always say that since I was going out of the country, I felt no need to have it up. Or something like that.

Incidentally, he was the one, on our very first date, who suggested a timeline of one month: if things were still great after that time, he'd love for us to date exclusively and take down our profiles. I said we should simply play things by ear. I know, I know, beware of these rush hour guys -- but sometimes it's hard NOT to get swept up in the moment by this guy who seems crazy about you, n'est-ce pas? Live and learn. Again.

So -- as I've already written, we had a lovely second date, after which he started to pull away. He later wrote that he felt guilty for seeing other women -- I told him that at this early stage, there was no expectation for either of us *not* to date other people. And even though he didn't suggest getting together, I thought I'd put it out there, and asked if he was free Sunday or Monday.

Then - once again -- nothing.

Another week or so went by of total silence, which, of course, speaks volumes. I was annoyed that he couldn't take a second to just email or text back to acknowledge that I had asked him to get together -- but of course, there's the answer. He's just not interested. Someone who is interested will want to know when they're going to see you again.

The friends who knew about the situation from the start -- the near-daily emails and texts -- were surprised to hear that he had just up and disappeared. Not only did this guy want to see where I grew up, and couldn't wait to learn all about me... he stressed how much he values honesty and good communication, blah blah blah. Textbook case, huh?

We've all seen this guy before. The Urban Dater just wrote about this exact topic. It could have been addressed to Bond.

I felt annoyance and disgust welling up in me -- as much as I wanted to just write him off, I was having a hard time. I just needed to get this (and him) out of my system.

So I wrote to him, not expecting a reply - but it felt good just to get it out. I wrote that I "got" it that no answer IS sometimes the answer... but that I respect a guy so much more when he simply tells me that he's not interested. That it was a bit of a surprise to have him go from being very obviously interested, to dead silence.

And -- shocker -- he wrote back a few hours later. He apologized for the lack of communication, and said it was for a few reasons. Work has been particularly busy for him lately (I might as well tell you: he's an airline pilot, though he doesn't have his own regular route -- he has a hell of a schedule at times). He also mentioned that he's "out there" and dating -- I read this as, "I can squeeze other women in my schedule, but not necessarily you".

Maybe I'm overreacting. Maybe I should still give him a shot -- lots of guys are really busy with work, and are presumably squeezing in other dates when they can. But something just doesn't feel right about this. Maybe if we had started off slow and steady, it might have been different. Maybe my ego is just slightly bruised -- he went from being very obviously into me, to... not so much.

Anyway. I wrote back, telling him that his response was appreciated, and that I wished him the best. If I hear from him in the future? I'll decide at that time what to do. For now, I feel that I have that rare "closure" thing we so often wish for, but rarely get.

Whew! This post is long enough. Next time I'll write about my new OK Cupid profile. I've never been hit on by so many 22-year-olds. I've also received not one, but two offers of a threesome. Thanks, but... no.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Bond Who? - Or – I Am Officially A Dating Machine

Three dates in one day. Sounded like a fun idea at first...

Date #1: Mr Nice Guy, #162
Nice was a setup by my friend D – actually, I think she may have met him through a setup, wasn’t attracted to him, but thought he might be good for me. She insisted that he’s a great, standup guy.

We had lunch, because neither of our schedules would allow otherwise. And I DID think that he was a sweet, cool, well-mannered guy. I’d like to see him again, but his schedule seems to have him traveling a lot in the coming weeks. So – we’ll see.

Date #2: Adorable Hipster Boy, #163
(he’s 28. I have ten (ish) years on him)
I met Hipster when he came to visit a co-worker in my office last week. Co-worker was showing him around, and when he came by my office, Hipster saw a book on my shelf on a topic that he had some expertise in. I said we should discuss this further. He added me as a Facebook friend later that day, and the email convos flowed easily. I soon said we should discuss this over a drink, and we soon had a plan.

Or did we? We’d decided on a day and time, but not a place. The ball was in his court – I had emailed him last, a day earlier, saying that 5 pm on Friday worked for me, and did he have any place in mind?

By late afternoon Friday, I still hadn’t heard from him, and was convinced the date was a wash, which was fine. Thus my surprise when he called – he apologized for not calling earlier (busy busy, yadda yadda) – he was having drinks at the Soho House with a friend, and would I like to join them there? Why yes – yes I would. And proceeded to tear apart my closet in search of an appropriate outfit.

I hit it off with Hipster’s friend, a fabulous gay guy – we all work in the same industry, and it turns out that Friend and I knew some people in common. Friend left after a while, and while Hipster seemed to enjoy talking to me, I wasn’t getting “the vibe” from him.

I finally said I had to get going, as I was meeting “a friend” (actually, date #3, which I was regretting having set at this point – I was really enjoying being with Hipster). We left Soho House and at one point peered into a dark, closed store – and had one of the hottest makeout sessions I’ve ever had.

Why was it so hot? Maybe because we were hiding in a dark doorway. Maybe because he’s this adorable young thing. Maybe because it felt sneaky – he’s my co-worker’s friend. He asked if I could meet my friend a bit later – I said it was too late, as she’d already be on her way to meet me.

He walked me home (I wanted to change before meeting my friend), and we kissed more outside my doorway. He wanted to come in for “just a minute”. I said, maybe another time. When I said goodnight, he said something like, “well, I’ll talk to you”. I won’t be surprised if I don’t. And that’s okay.

Date #3: Speed Dater, #164
I met Speed at (you got it) a speed dating event a few weeks ago. Very cute, very interesting guy – but by this point, my dating energy was gone. And I was sleepy from the two glasses of red wine I’d had at the Soho House. Poor guy – I yawned half the time we were together. He seemed to have a good sense of humor about it – when he walked me home, he said he hoped we could spend another night yawning together soon.

I’m on the fence about Speed, but it could have been a case of bad timing – but if he calls, I’d see him again.

Quick Bond update… is that there really is no update. He wrote that nice email the other day. I wrote back. And nothing since. I’m definitely thinking about him less and less (yesterday’s dating marathon helped). I’m about 99% ready to write him off. It’s just what my gut is telling me to do. Life goes on.


And – I nearly forgot – I recycled a past date the other night. As in, three years past. I may have a new summer fling. Details to come!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Backtrack -- date #2 with Bond:

Before he disappeared, then resurfaced, I had this wonderful second date with Bond -- I wrote this account a day or two later, then got too busy to post it:

We made plans to meet up at my place first, then we’d decide where to go out for a bite or a drink. As soon as he walked through the door, we had a passionate, long, deep, close kiss. Rather, kisses. There had been a lot of buildup in the two weeks since we'd seen each other, through almost-daily emails. After a few minutes of this, we both laughed and said we should cool down a bit.

I gave him a tour of my place – he admired it, and said he could definitely tell that a woman lived here. It’s not especially girly, just neat and tidy.

We sat on my couch to talk about my trip, and I showed him pics on my laptop. With the monsoon rains outside, we decided to just hang out at my place – neither of us were hungry. We laughed about our previous date, when we smooched shamelessly in public in the corner of a (mostly empty) bar.

We kissed, we talked, we looked at pictures, we kissed some more. His hand began to wander up my skirt and I told him it was too soon. We had a very frank discussion about sex, and about the importance of waiting – as he put it, “let’s see if there’s something here first”.

Ever since that electric first kiss on that first date, I’ve been thinking about what sex would be like with him – only thinking about it, mind you. When I like a guy, there’s definitely extra incentive to hold off on doing the deed.

Lucky Girl wrote this very eloquent post on the virtues of waiting to sleep with someone – LG, seriously, thank you – you put together the words that had been swimming around my head, but couldn’t come together in a cohesive manner, especially this part:

Sex can be an important part of falling in love with someone, but it can also be a pair of blinders. I’ve learned that having sex before I really know a person confuses me. It clouds my judgment, makes me feel love that has no foundation.

So – we’ll see. At this point, my goal is to try to wait til at least date 4 or 5 – not that we’ll be “in love” yet (far from it), but we’ll hopefully have more of a vibe about each other.

I wish I had a videotape of this last date – as it is, I’ve been replaying moments of it in my head, like when he told me he wanted to visit my old neighborhood with me. When he asked genuine questions about my family, my job, my life. I also wouldn’t mind seeing some video of those sexy kisses.

He left after 2 am.

Staying optimistically cautious.

So... after that, he disappeared, then emailed me that he was feeling guilty about dating other women. I wrote back that I never assumed I'd be exclusive with someone after only two dates.

Update: he then wrote back with a thank you, and he appreciated my positive attitude. He's out of town for a few days for work, but he hoped I was enjoying the beautiful NY weather. He did NOT suggest scheduling another date.

So -- I do hope I'll see him again, but I'm more cautious than optimistic at the moment. Several other dates lined up in the near future, some new guys, some guys from the past -- stay tuned for info!

Speaking of guys from the past: I went to a baseball game with Martin last night. Although "dating" in the conventional sense didn't work for us in the past, I do enjoy his company as a friend. With occasional benefits. Ahem -- you could say there were several home runs last night. And this morning.

I do want a boyfriend. But with this gorgeous weather, spring / summer flings are also sounding good to me right now...

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

30 second update

My friend Shmutti told me that my "fans" (awww!) are waiting with bated breath to find out what happened with Bond -- I know I should continue to build suspense, and I'll write more details later, but here's the condensed update:

* date #2: wonderful. Great connection. I'm really digging this guy, and it seems he feels the same.

* the following days: his emails have gone from warm and sweet, to short and perfunctory. I have a momentary freakout (not on him, of course -- just venting to any friend who will listen). I blame it on the jetlag.

* a week after the second date, he writes to apologize for distancing himself -- he wanted to admit that he was still dating other women, and felt like a jerk for it, because he thinks I'm really cool.

* I'm like -- whoa, dude needs some dating lessons. Sure, we had a great connection -- but not enough to ever assume that that made us exclusive (you know what they say about assuming...). I write back saying we just need to chill, and while I appreciate his honesty, he should know that I haven't stopped dating others either.

* So -- I haven't exactly been "dating" others (I haven't had time -- was just on a brief roadtrip with my best friend the past few days) -- I'm "in talks" with new guys.

* AND -- something about spring -- so many of my past guys are coming out of the woodwork! Smiley and I exchanged a few texts and emails this weekend ... Smooch (we had 3 dates in the fall) wants to make me dinner... and Martin just texted about getting together soon.

* AND -- when I was in a funk over Bond a few days ago, I found the perfect distraction: this adorable, smart, 28-year-old guy, a friend of a co-worker's. He's new to the city. There have been talks of getting a drink soon.

* About two years ago, I had two dates with a new guy (will have to dig up his blog name). I liked him enough, but he emailed that he didn't feel the connection he was looking for. Fair enough. Fast forward to a few days ago: he wrote to me on Match (I think we first met on Jdate) -- he likes my profile, my energy, my interests. He clearly doesn't recognize me. I'm thinking of "not recognizing" him either.