A Caffeinated Observation

I saw it from the very first moment your hand touched his.

You, with your tight t-shirt, wrapped around your stocky barrel chest, dark jeans rolled at the ankle, casual and worn-in Sperrys.

Him, rushing in from work, presumably from some very important meeting. A tucked in shirt, plaid, one size too big, khakis that sagged around his waist, and shoes that were a little too polished.

I watched the two of you shake hands, firm, and watched just the smallest hint of disappointment flicker across your eyes.

You, with your grande black iced coffee. Same here.

Him, rudely interrupting your well-crafted sentence to run to the counter to retrieve his large nonfat latte in a ceramic mug and a fat ham and swiss wrap on wheat.

Watching him bite into his food as you sipped your iced coffee, dry of conversation yet full of instant online-dating regret.

Maybe he is really photogenic. Maybe his pictures only showed him wearing a hat so his bald spot didn’t show. Or maybe you aren’t as shallow as me, and were willing to look past all that, hoping for the best. You hopeless romantic you.

You, hopeless romantic.

Him, hopeless.

Me, knowing all too well the feeling.

 

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50 (Twentysomething) First Dates

We all know the movie with Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore, right? If not, here’s what you need to know: Drew Barrymore has short-term memory loss. She goes on 50 dates with Adam Sandler, but each one feels like a first date because said short-term memory.

Okay, well living the twentysomething life is kind of like that, except instead of all of us having short-term memory loss, this is a time filled with 50 literal first dates.

Now, don’t worry…this isn’t a blog post where I’m going to brag about how many dates I’ve gone on recently. And to be honest, I have more fingers on my left-hand than I do number of dates I’ve been on in the past year. But something weird happened this past week. A customer at Starbucks slipped me their number. A first! And an all-time barista goal. So for that, I am proud.

So I went on the date. Coffee. Casual. But I was shocked to hear the phrases that were coming out of my mouth. Instead of my usual small talk (“What’s your favorite color? If you could be any animal, what would you be? Tell me about your first pet.”), I was asking much more pointed questions. What social justice issues are you involved with? How are you involved in your community? What are your  goals?

And maybe it’s because I’m older and more mature, or maybe it’s just because I really don’t give a fuck what your favorite color is, but I’m past the point of small talk on first dates. Like, I get it. It’s casual, it’s polite, it’s conversation. But it’s kind of like the classic card game, “Go Fish.” If you don’t have the cards I’m looking for, you can Go Fish because ain’t nobody got time to swim around with a fish that isn’t the right one for you.

Needless to say, this person was not asked back out on a second date. Sorry, but not sorry.

For most of my twentysomethings, in regards to dating, I’ve felt hopeless, single to a fault, and lonely AF. And why wouldn’t I? The majority of people around me are either married with kids or in long-term committed relationships with the person they’ve been in love with forever and ever. And there is nothing wrong with that, at all, but when that’s all you have to compare yourself to, it’s hard. But “comparison is the thief of joy,” am I right Theodore Roosevelt?

But it doesn’t have to be complete opposites: married with kids or single and lonely. Why can’t it be single until you find the person you’re looking for that makes you happy? Well, now it can be. This blog post is official permission for myself and everyone who reads it to be single and loving it. Maybe I just needed a reminder of what I wasn’t looking for…because I’d rather be single than with someone who is completely uninspired by the world around them.

What’s cool about being a twentysomething though is this: I finally feel like I know what I’m looking for. Which, ironically enough, means that just as I start going out on more dates, I start to feel okay with being single. Weird, right?

So if you know any goal-oriented, inspired, and relatively attractive people, feel free to send them my way. But in the mean time, I think I’ll be okay with going on 50 first dates.