The Date.

Posted: August 13, 2011 in About Me

I’m sure we’ve all done it.  We’ve all been starved of attention and had only desperation and loneliness for company.  So we do what we always vowed we would never do.  Let a friend set us up with either one of their friends, or, worse, a friend of one of their friends.

A complicated process. The exchange of pictures, the first tentative texts, the glimpses into each other and each other’s lives.

Is he funny?

Is he sharp, intelligent, a gentleman?

Will there be that connection there that I’ve been reaching for?

It’s those initial exchanges that make us want to learn more; that make us want to meet this man and get to know him.

That’s exactly what I did.

A friend set me up with someone that she knows.  For the purposes of this piece, we’ll call him Tom.

Now, Tom sounded perfect on paper: intelligent, a gentleman, funny, good job, own home, nice car.  He possessed some of the non-tactile qualities I look for in a man, as well as some of the more superficial ones.

We exchanged photographs and texts for a few days, and I could feel myself being drawn in.  I have always been drawn to the shimmer of a possibility of relationship.  I guess some would call that desperate, I’m not sure what I’d call it myself.  We liked each other and, within a few days, he asked me out on a date.  I, of course, obliged.

I was so nervous that entire day at work, so much so that I experienced my usual response to nerves or stress: something I like to call The Nervous Shits.  The evening quickly came, and I hurried home to make sure I was ready to be picked up at my house for seven.
I was ready, and still breeding nerves in my poor tummy.  Some people get butterflies when they’re nervous, I get a whole circus act.  Now that I think about it, and I realise why this is.  It’s all about me, as self indulgent as that sounds.  But it’s true.  When meeting a new man, I can’t stop thinking thoughts like: “what are they gonna think about how I look, or dress, or act, or speak?”; “what if I don’t come across as witty or clever or sharp?”; “what if they think I’m ugly?”.  Never once do I think these thoughts outwardly, that is to say I never think things like “what am I gonna think about how he looks or dresses or acts or speaks?” or even “what do I think about how I look or dress or act or speak?”.

He arrived dead on time, which is another thing I love: punctuality.  I hate when people are late, as I very rarely am, and I don’t understand people who set a time and turn up fifteen minutes later.  But anyway, he arrived and I went out to meet him and we drove into town.  Gay Town.  Not the nicest of first dates, I have to admit.  I suppose maybe it’s easier to get a measure of someone in a surrounding that’s comfortable.

We had a really nice time.  He wasn’t as funny as he came across in texts or phone calls, but I put that down to nerves, and I was making all the jokes.  A defence mechanism for guarding myself against potential harm? Probably.  No, not probably.  Definitely.  It’s weird, I know now, to be absolutely nervous before meeting them – when that person is not around.  Then, on the actual date to be exhibiting no signs of nervousness or apprehension at all.  But again, that’s one of my defence mechanisms.  Nervousness is weakness and I can’t show that to any man, after what happened to me in the past.

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