"Hi! I'm a stranger from the internet!"
Female, 24, Writeron a date with
Male, 25, Student
First Date at Movie Theatre New York, NY
In case you haven't heard, we now run the best dating site on the internet. And in celebration of meeting new people and the whole kaleidoscope of human experience that can come out of that, we're instituting a new column where Hooksexup readers can share the details of their latest date. It's like a post-date conversation with a friend — if you're interested in sharing your date with us, we'd love to hear about it.
ACT 1: "The novelty-glasses brigade."
So how'd you end up on this date?
We started messaging each other through an online-dating site. Then we started texting/emailing. We emailed for a pretty long time before we met — two or three weeks — which was unusual, compared to how long other people I met through the site would talk to me. And they were never as fun as this guy.
Tell us what you knew (or thought you knew) about him before you met up. Did you Google him? (Admit it.)
I knew he'd just graduated from college, lived with his parents in New Jersey, and spent his time writing screenplays and applying for internships when he wasn't working as a temp in a lab. He told me he'd quote Breaking Bad at the other temps at the lab, yelling things like "You stole my recipe, you fucking junkie!" which was enough to make me want to meet him. I could tell he was a character. I could also tell that he was a good, funny writer through his messages and texts, and from his profile pictures I knew he had costume-y (but prescription) glasses like I did. He referred to us as the novelty-glasses brigade.
What did you plan to do? Whose bright idea was it?
We planned on seeing a movie, because we'd spent so much time talking about movies. But we didn't want to see anything too serious or actually good, because we wanted to be able to talk/make fun of the movie. Real Steel seemed like an obvious choice. Although going on a date with someone you've never met at a movie theater seems like a stupid idea, I can't stress enough that it's the best plan for neurotic, shy people like me. We were going to sneak a small bottle of whiskey into the theater — his idea, but something I probably would have suggested, had he not. Knowing I'd have two hours to calm my Hooksexups and emerge from the theater 1) buzzed and 2) with something in common to talk about (the movie), I was put at ease, because I have an intense hatred for basic, awkward gettin'-to-know-you small talk.
What were your immediate thoughts/feelings when you saw your date?
He looked like a dandy, which I'd expected/hoped for, because for whatever reason, I'm attracted to dudes who look like dandies. When he opened his mouth, his voice was pretty high-pitched — enough to make me have to stifle instinctive laughter. I imagined he'd sound like Joel McHale, but he sounded more like David Cross. Not a turn-off, just surprising. But I immediately felt comfortable around him. I was sitting and reading a book and he jumped in front of me and said, "Hi! I'm a stranger from the internet!", gave me a hug, and assured me that would be the most awkward part of the evening.
Beauty is only skin deep, but how'd your date look? Were you immediately attracted or turned off by him in some way?
He was 100% my type. He was a few inches taller than me (I'm 5'9", so that's not always a given), was wearing a leather jacket and white shoes, and had really cool white glasses. Most importantly, he was able to pull them off. His hair did this swoopy, cowlicky thing, which was adorable, and he had this great, inviting smile.
ACT 2: "Neither of us expected that to happen."
So, what exactly did you end up doing? Take us through the sequence of events.
We watched Real Steel, ate at Vanessa's Dumplings, went to a bar I like in Alphabet City called Double Down Saloon, where we met up with two of my friends, and then we all took a cab back to my apartment in Astoria.
Tell us about your conversations on the date. Were they interesting? Flirtatious? Combative?
We talked like we already knew each other, which it felt like we did. Since we were watching Real Steel, and since it was real awful, much of our talk at the beginning was imitating Hugh Jackson's cliché lines. He kept having to shove popcorn in or clasp his hand over my mouth when I spoke or laughed too loud. We talked about our lives and pop culture, but we mostly had a swapping-stories kind of dynamic. It was great. I felt like he was interested in all of my stories, and I was completely interested in his.
What surprised you most about your date?
What surprised me most was how well we got along, and how he was exactly the way I'd hoped he'd be: funny, unpretentious, sweet.
Did anything really funny happen? (And were you laughing together?) How about anything awkward?
Our date was incredibly high school. Besides sneaking in alcohol, we also started making out midway through the movie. Neither of us expected that to happen.
Be frank: did your date get more or less attractive as the night went on?
He was already super-attractive to me, but he only got more so. When we were at the bar, he'd sneak up behind me and erotically whisper Wu-Tang lyrics in my ear, which I thought was just about the weirdest and most hilarious thing ever. It was impossible for him to ever seem actually weird or creepy because he was so funny. Every time he did something weird I was more attracted to him.
Conversation-wise, did you hold anything back? What might you have blurted out if you'd had one more drink? Unless you did have one more drink.
We talked about a lot of things, and were really honest with each other the whole time. Since he'd just gotten out of a relationship, there were a couple points where he'd start bringing that up. Ready to trash her, or whatever. It would have been easy for me to contribute to the ex-talk, because I had just gotten out of a three-year-long relationship with a terrible person a few months prior, but I didn't want to. We'd just met, after all — why talk about that stuff? So after I gave in and told him a quick but probably shocking detail about something my ex-boyfriend did (he said something like, "your relationship couldn't have been as bad as mine"), he shut up about exes. Besides that, most of our conversation was decidedly unserious and light and funny.
ACT 3: "Can't wait to have some sex later!"
How'd it end? Polite hug? Taxi sex? Fistfight?
We took a cab back to my place, already knowing that we were going to have sex. We were even whispering to each other giddily at the bar about it — things like, "Can't wait to have some sex later!" like total nerds. It was great. We both acknowledged that we hadn't planned on even kissing, never mind having sex, but that we had such good (as much as I hate the term) chemistry, it was just like... why not? My two friends, who were dating at the time, also came with us, and slept in the spare room in my apartment. He got along really well with my friends, so the trip there was a lot of fun.
Hypothetically, if you started dating him, what might end up bothering you?
I think I sort of am dating him now, and nothing about him bothers me at all. Except for the fact that he lives far away, and is a total dude about things like labels and commitment, everything else about him is very different from every other guy I've known.
Would you go out again? And if so, what might you want to do?
Yes, we've gone out again — I visited him in his New Jersey town, and he took me (in his minivan) to a great hoagie place and a great thrift store and a great dine-in movie theater. Food, clothes, and movies are probably my three favorite things in life, so we did everything I would have wanted to do.
Time for a little objectivity: how close do you think your date's version of this story would be to yours? And what might they differ on?
It would probably be similar, although he may remember more than I do — certainly about what I was like. For much of the date I was either buzzed or drunk, fortunately and unfortunately; because I'm only neurotic about what I sound like when I'm sober, I don't really remember how I came off. But we're still seeing each other, so I must not have been a complete idiot.
If you went out again, what would you do differently? Or did you ace it, you sly devil?
I think we aced it.
Have a great dating story you want to share with us? Tell us all about it.