Dates are the worst. In my mind, they are three-hour interviews for a job you don’t even want. What do you wear? What do you ask? What do you say? How do you convince them you’re just the right amount of every positive personality trait combined mixed with just the right amount of quirk? It’s literally impossible. I think it’s hard for me to date because I’m a very hard person to date. My friend once dismissed advice I was giving another friend who recently started dating someone because “if a guy slouched on a first date you would never speak to him again.” Which is fucking true. Posture is key. I would much rather not refer to a date as a date and just see it as a casual hang with no strings attached to see if two people are compatible and on the same wavelength. A longer but more encompassing name, I find. Because here is why the traditional idea of “dates” are kinda terrifying:
1) What the fuck do I wear?
I work at a gym, meaning 99% of my pants are stretchy and 75% of my shirts have had the arms cut off of them with a pair of Crayola scissors I leave on my headboard. That leaves very little by way of clothes that I can actually wear out in public. Usually I have to start getting ready for a first date three hours ahead of time just so I have time to rip apart my closet and exhaust every option. It’ll go from being jeans and a nice shirt to being leggings and a tank top to being half of a halloween costume I wore three years ago with a white blazer thrown over it. My mind runs wild. Does it look too trashy? Does it look too prude? Do these colours clash? Why do I own so many shirts with sequins on them? Am I secretly a poorly-paid escort? How tall is he? Will I look like his mom if I wear heels? There are so many things to consider. Then, three hours later when I’m actually on the date I realize how little clothes matter when every other thing goes right. Which leads us to …
2) Where the fuck are we gonna go?
I live on a suburban island. There are a severely limited amount of places to go on a date. Let’s start with the worst of them: the movies. Firstly, we aren’t 12. Should I get my dad to sit three rows behind us to chaperone? Going to the movies is something you do when you’ve been comfortably dating for a couple of months and you wanna hang out for two hours but have nothing to talk about. On a first date you want to be able to look at each other, talk to each other and laugh at each other. None of those things are possible at the movies. (I really hate movie dates, I don’t know if that’s obvious yet?) Second, there’s the bar date. Which is cool, if you pick the right bar. Anything with a terrace is a fucking win, because chances are it’s quiet enough that you can have a conversation but you can still hear the music and the people inside. Although bars can be risky. I was once on a date with a guy and the waitress asked me what I wanted first so I obviously ordered a pint of something delicious that came with a fruit slice in it and when she asked for his order he got a Diet Coke. I nursed that beer for two painful hours. Thirdly, there’s dinner. Dinner is nice because you can talk, eat, drink, the best of all worlds. But dinner is expensive, and I actually feel really bad allowing a guy to spend money on my – let’s be honest – excessive appetite. Spinach dip? Sign me up. Calamari? Done. Lobster bisque? We’re doing it. Entrecôte? Yes fucking please. That pairs well with this super old and super expensive bottle of wine? Bring it on. That being said, the best date I ever went on was a walk around the lake drinking wine straight from the bottle. It was low-key, spontaneous and really picturesque. The only problem was …
3) What the fuck do we talk about?
I’m a ridiculous over-sharer. The mention of something small and insignificant will result in a ten-minute one-sided discussion about where I see myself in ten years. I have no conversational flow and I will take a subject and just kill it. Forget about awkward silences. In journalism we were taught to wait out awkward silences because that’s usually when people get nervous, try to fill the silence and say something juicy on record. I didn’t really need to be taught this because it’s just my normal life. And, as a classic Maritimer, I will not hesitate to bring up the weather in every conversation I have. Our people love talking about the weather. I recently stumbled upon a Twitter feed of ridiculous first-date questions and I’ve been dying to try them out in real life. Some of these include:
Do you think lizards can fall in love?
How many jelly beans do you think I can fit in my mouth before I suffocate?
Do you think bugs have best friends?
What’s your favourite type of bread?
What’s the worst thing you would do for some free guacamole?
Do you think giraffes ever get lonely?
What if you accidentally forget your phone before going into the bathroom; how long do you think you’d last before you died?
I urge you to fill a tiny notebook with all of your favourite questions and sneakily use them as a guide to having the best first date ever. Although that might hinder …
4) How the fuck do we end this thing?
Let’s get one thing straight: I don’t wanna have sex with you. Well, chances are I probably do. But not today, my friend. It’s going to sound horrible, but I’m going to say it. Every time I have heard a guy talk about a girl he hooked up with on a first date, it was talked about with a mixture of both disgust and fascination. “All I had to do was buy her dinner, bro! But I’m not gonna see her again cause obviously she’s kinda slutty.” Followed by a 30-second masculinity-defining handshake. In my mind, the girl lucked out that night. She got dinner, didn’t spend a penny, then had what I’m assuming was some pretty decent sex. Regardless, if you were nice to me, let me talk my brains out, didn’t comment on my clearly horrible outfit and brought me somewhere I could get to know you, I’m gonna want to hold your hand. And kiss you for like an appropriate amount of time. Or an inappropriate amount of time depending on how good of a kisser you are.