For the longest time, and still, I thought of the whole “dating” thing as obsolete. I mean dating in the sense where you go on actual dates. Those awkward dinners (who’s going to pay?), trying to find some common topic to talk about over coffee and avoiding eye contact when you can’t continue a topic, trying really hard not to show all your flaws to try and impress the person, and at the end of the night either leaving with a hug, a handshake, a first kiss, or jumping into bed. Maybe all four. When I think of dating, I think of it as someone who I have known, who I can enjoy my time with, and the things we do feel natural, not a forced location and time. But to each their own.
Readers, I’ve been tired of dating. I’ve been tired of not having someone find me exciting or not finding the other person exciting. I miss spontaneity, but realize I don’t go for spontaneous guys. I miss getting excited. I’m tired of losing excitement because the other person shows an extreme character flaw. But this blog post isn’t about me whining about dating. Because I actually went on a great date this past week and felt he made the cut to make it onto my blog.
It was a Sunday night. I had just spent the weekend traveling to NYC for one night (12 hours of travel for 15 hours of stay), staying up til 4:30am, having heartfelt talks, realizing my future fears, reading some beautiful short stories that reminded me of what my sister and I are going through (Haruki Murukami for the win), saying goodbye to one of my friends as she left to pursue the next chapter of her life, and starting to work on the stuff for my class that was going to start that week. After this exhausting weekend, one of my friends texted me asking me to come out to the bar that is literally across the street from where I live. I thought about saying no and making excuses and staying in, but instead I said ‘Fuck it’, I’m not going to be flaky, I’ll go.
I invited my roommate who also surprisingly decided to come out on a Sunday night, I mean the bar is literally across the street. We go over and give the bouncer our IDs, mine checks fine and then he sits there with my roommates for about 3 minutes, putting it in and out even though it was scanning green each time. She may look young but for someone who is turning 23 soon don’t mock her ID by trying to get a red light and an excuse, it’s a Sunday night. We get into the bar and see our friend, Matt and his roommate, Joss, and his friend who was visiting out of town, lets call him Liam. I knew Joss but Liam seemed really familiar, turns out not only did we meet back during my freshman year, we were even facebook friends.
So Joss and I went and got a larger table in the back for the 5 of us. Soon the rest of them followed. We had some beers, Joss and I sang our hearts out to Celine Dion, Whitney Houston, and danced around to Michael Jackson. In this time frame, I must have charmed dear Liam because he took an interest to talking to me, making jokes, and keeping my attention. As it neared 11pm (PARTAY ANIMALS) we decided it was time to head out, but Liam wanted us to stay out by suggesting we go to another bar. With a 4:1 vote we ended up parting ways and going home, back across the street, it was a Sunday night.
The next morning as I’m sitting at work around 9am I get a FB message from Liam. He told me how great the night before was and invited me to go out to a Music/ Art show thing one of his friends had created. I said sure but only after 9pm because I had a dance class. The rest of my day went by, work, home, food, nap, reading, and finally got to dance. The music/art show thing started around 8:30pm and my dance class ran a little over so I didn’t get there til 9:15pm. 45 minutes late to a date, playing the lets keep ’em waiting card AKA I don’t know how to schedule my life.
The art instillation was amazing. They had a music ensemble with this : The Only Thing I Have Ever Truly Loved. It was the most beautiful thing I had ever seen. Liam got me a glass of wine and we went on discussing the workings of these sugar cubes and how the LED lights worked (I surprisingly knew more about the background then I thought I would but hey earlier that year I did a dance collaboration piece that had the similar idea behind it. Dance, the mediums that come out of it, amazing. I can talk about this in a not hookup related blog, HMU). We talked about trying them out but I didn’t really want to play with it. Finally we got our picture taken together in front of it. Ballsy for the first date. But I like it. It was bold and fun just to get a picture with the sculpture. Plus we had some fun poses, a couple tender ones (which I couldn’t take seriously and ended up squirming away). Liam kept saying how we should go out afterwards and his friend who created the sculpture, his brother, his brother’s girlfriend, and two of his other friends ended up going to this Belgium Beer Bar down the street. We joined since who would actually go out on a Monday night?!
So we got there and decided to all sit outside. To get to the restaurant you have to go down a set of stairs, like going into the basement, so the outside had a feel that we were in a pit but surrounded by greenery, wood, outdoor string lights, a lot of open space and a fireplace. Our waiter was a little upset that he got such a big table right near the end of his shift. He was a pretty chill guy except a little spacey. He took our order. Liam and I split duck poutine and I got a fruity beer that had a lot of cherry flavor. Liam got a Belgium White. We chatted, about nothing in particular. I was intrigued to listen to the other people at the table as well. It was like we were having a group date with our tiny date being a subsection of this huge date. Don’t get me wrong, I was really interested in Liam, but more so that we were doing these spontaneous artsy things that I usually do alone.
Time went on, we kept talking, eating, drinking. Then one of the girls had a brilliant idea to ask the waiter to turn the music that was playing outside up. They had a large amount of 50’s going. So the sugarcube guy, after a couple drinks, asked the waiter if he could turn the music up and there would be a hefty tip included with the request. So the waiter did. At first no one got up, but then it happened. The Twist came on. I’m a pretty jittery person so I HAD to get up and dance around. The other girl, May, also got up and danced the twist with me. Liam watched in adoration as I twisted my hips and spun around and made a complete fool of myself. Then he got up and joined me on the next song. We first danced like we had a body between us but as we got comfortable we moved closer and closer together, him spinning me around, bringing me in, moving side to side. Dancing in the moonlight came on and spun around and shared our first kiss. It felt like I was on a movie date. The guy sees the girl, asks her out to an event, goes out afterwards, they laugh, look into each others eyes, and it’s perfect. It felt like that. If I could capture a feeling and moment and relive it, it would be that.
We keep dancing, and finally it’s getting late, I have work in the morning, he has to drive 5 hours to get back home in the morning. So we decided to head in. Now the next part gets a little less romantic. We drove back and I parked in the parking lot by my apartment, we made plans to go back to the bar we had met at, and then we just sat making out in my car for a while. A homeless guy walked behind my car and we spent five minutes debating if he was stealing the actual trash can or just the cans inside it. After all that romantic talk, I invited him upstairs. We hooked up and then I asked him if I could bring him home. Maybe it’s the fact that it was 1am, maybe the fact that I had work in the morning and didn’t want another thing to add to my already rushed routine, maybe I just lost all love for cuddling, but I asked him if I could take him back to where he was staying. He said he appreciated the honesty. I took him home, he asked me if he could text me, and I said yes (granted he didn’t have my number still). And that was that. We texted the next day, I sent him the pictures we took, he asked me to come visit, and I said maybe.
For the first time in a long time I was excited. Maybe not about the guy but at the potential of what a date can be. It didn’t feel like a lets get to awkwardly know each other, I actually felt like he was a friend and we were only hanging out. It felt like the momentum I needed. I just needed to experience one good thing in a sea of bad to realize there are people out there I can have a relationship with. This one may not have worked out but it gave me hope to go forward. Or at least know that a stranger would be willing to dance in the moonlight with me.