I’m still grinning like a giddy fool from the first date I had last night with S, a woman I follow on twitter but had never met in person. I usually suggest something casual but conversation-friendly for my first dates, but S had let me know via DM that she liked movie dates. That’s great for me because I really enjoy going out to see a movie on dates, too. Besides, we were going to Gallery Place in DC for the show and I knew that there were would be tons of things we could walk to afterwards where we could chat.
I went on a date with someone I’ve never met after only communicating with her on twitter? Yep. And she follows me, too, so when I tweet out a link to this blog post, I strongly suspect she’ll read it. Of course, I asked her for permission before I published this. But yes, S is now the fifth person I’ve met from twitter: I dated the first and second and fifth. Just friends with the third and fourth. I’ve a half-written post about how this might be my favorite form of “online dating”. But that’s for another time.
S is one of many DC tweeps who also blogs. Or maybe that should be: one of the many bloggers who also tweets? Either way, she’s one of them and she blogs about stuff that she wouldn’t necessarily want family and coworkers to read so she does it anonymously. Hence, I’m calling her “S” here.
I’d started following her twitter and reading her blog posts several weeks (months?) ago. From them, I thought she seemed open to new experiences, sexy, fun-loving, geeky, wary of the city, but not yet hardened by the urban life, caring, sweet, a little shy, and yet determined to try to make good choices in order to take care of herself. I also knew that grammar and spelling were not her greatest skills, but I thought she offset that by liking zombies and ice cream. Not… Not at the same time, you guys. That would be weird.
That’s where things stood until this past week, I got the opportunity to go see a screening of a UK movie (Attack the Block) here in the US, for free! Look, I can pay for movie tickets, but free makes an experience seem even better. Like it’s a gift that you can just relax and enjoy. And I thought of S not-shooting-me-down, so I tried again. This time, she turned me down because the screening was on a night when she was already committed to attending a party, but with the sentiment that otherwise she’d be happy to join me for a movie date. At two date rejections, I might have thought she was just telling me to go away in gentle, passive fashion–but she didn’t give me that “leave me alone” vibe. So, I struck again while the open-to-a-movie iron was still hot and she agreed to come out with me to a movie after work on Saturday!
At that point, we’d still never met. So when she DM’d me her real name, I dutifully internet-stalked her. I mean, she basically invited me to do it. I found photos of her (cute!) and a personal blog about things she did share with her family, and a couple other little things. All fine, good things. I’m not shallow enough that I’d have called off the date if I didn’t think she was cute in her photos, but at least that way I could recognize her. And some people look better while others look worse in photos so… basically I was saving my shallow evaluation for the actual date.
I had to prep for it; we were going to see Cowboys and Aliens at Gallery Place, and though I knew there were tons of things around there, I haven’t really explored much of that area outside of Muse Lounge where I’d gone swing dancing occasionally. Google maps and yelp are great for this sort of thing, especially with my Android phone. I found a bunch of places to eat various types of food as well as a couple other things to do and starred them on the website. That sync’d to my phone so I could just pull up the starred places on my Maps app later.
Here’s where we met for the date. View Larger Map
I’m glad she hadn’t had to wait for me because the tiny theater was packed. And ANNOYINGLY, people were holding empty seats even though it was mere minutes to the start time. That shouldn’t be allowed! 20 minutes before? Sure. 5 minutes before? Their loss! Anyway, we didn’t end up in the very front but maybe the 2nd row. Eh, if that was the biggest hurdle on our date, I wasn’t too worried. We chatted a bit before the movie, and as the lights turned down for the preview, I leaned close to her ear and told her I thought she was cute. She seemed happy with that. Since I wasn’t sure if she liked commenting back and forth during films, I tried to keep quiet from then on. But I couldn’t help it! A few times I occasionally leaned close to her ear again to make a comment. Still, she always seemed pleased by whatever I said so I think that part went well. At the end, we were both of a “It was fun but no big deal” opinion on the film.
Now, that was all she’d agreed to, but I did not want to walk away from this woman. I wanted to get to know her better because I was already feeling attracted to her and wanted to find out whether that was something to pursue or not. I suggested we get something to eat and she was up for it. The trusty smartphone came out and without interrogating her too much or forcing her to make too many decisions, I found that she was not a big fan of spicy food and hadn’t had too many experiences with ethnic dishes, but was willing to try new things. I decided to take her to Momiji Japanese Restaurant for sushi! We walked the couple of blocks to it from Gallery place. I was nervous that it might rain but we made it safely.
There were two aspects to our after-movie dinner: the dining experience and the flirting experience. I think I made the dining experience a fun one when it could have been difficult. She was pretty unfamiliar with sushi and its ingredients, didn’t care for spicy food, and didn’t feel comfortable with chopsticks. None of that bothers me. Really! I ordered veggie gyoza appetizers so that would start getting prepared while we looked through the menu. I found out she likes tuna, so I looked for something that would be exotic and tasty without being too scary, based on tuna. And then I ordered a special roll for her with the spicy sauces requested on the side, and avocado roll and sweet potato roll for me. When the server only left us with chopsticks, I gave S a cheating way to use them until we could ask for a fork — that worked out fine and I hope I didn’t make her feel awkward about it. She did seem to like the gyoza, the sushi roll I chose for her, and my sweet potato sushi roll that I offered her. So, I think that part was good.
This is not what we ate but it is from their website. Isn’t it pretty?
We headed out into the musty evening air and started slowly strolling back toward Gallery Place. I came right out and told her that I didn’t want our evening to end yet and she seemed right there with me, but had to work the next day. I asked if I could at least drive her home so we could keep talking and she was a little hesitant. But since she’d been thinking of taking the bus home I think I didn’t have too hard of a time persuading her. Let me take a moment here to say if all she’d wanted from me was a drive home with no funny business, that’s all I’d have done. I take no for an answer. Was I hoping to make out with her? Absolutely. But my own hope is nobody’s consent.
Anyway, we kept talking about things like my swing dancing and her lack of rhythm and other topics as we walked into the parking garage. We hunted for my car (she made the Seinfeld reference!), and when we found it, I walked around to let her in on the passenger side. And before we got in the car, I checked to see how she felt about how the date was going. She felt good about it, it turns out. … And then I drove her home.
We kissed good night. That was… Well, I thoroughly enjoyed kissing her good night. And she made clear to me that we should go on another date, so I must have done a decent job. That date was last night. Today, I’ve made plans with her to go on another date this week. So, of course, I’m still grinning.
P.S. Again, I don’t think this is giving away too much, but she lives not very far from Jam Cellar. Where I often dance on Tuesday nights! I don’t believe in “signs” but come on! That’s cool.