I'm Miss M. Here are some of my Online Dating tips, backed up by my sometimes hilarious, and often disconcerting stories…
So where was I? Oh, that’s right I was telling you about when I was about to meet a dreamy dude for our first date, but failed to locate him in the bar. Awkward for all. Especially me.
As I saw it, I had two options:
Option 1: Run home and forget the whole thing ever happened.
Option 2: Keep circling the bar until I find my man, or until the staff kick me out for scaring the patrons.
I honestly had no idea how to play it. But luckily I didn’t have to decide because my phone rang. It was Mr Reliable. And this time rather than playing it “cool” like I do so well, I went on a ginourmous rant about what had just happened. (How I’d essentially tried to pick up an old dude on a motorbike.) Mr Reliable thought it was hilarious and told me to stay put – he’d come and find me. Needless to say, I felt pretty stupid. Worst first impression ever. Yet it didn’t seem to matter because when Mr Reliable appeared he wore a beautifully big smile. I apologised for my incompetence. But he simply laughed and prescribed me a cocktail. Yep, he knew exactly how to deal with me. Reliable, and awesome.
It wasn’t long before we were sitting at a waterfront table chatting like old mates. And the best part was that I felt ridiculously attracted to the guy too. I know I’ve said that before (and I’ll probably say it again). But in this moment, he was the best internet man I’d encountered. Whenever I feel this level of attraction, I tend to lose my ability to speak. But there was something about Mr Reliable that made me feel completely at ease. Or maybe it was the vodka?
Either way, we were having a ball. Conversation flowed. As did the booze. And soon enough, we were playing a little game I like to call Surprise Cocktail. The rules are simple. You take turns to choose the next cocktail, thus surprising your date with said cocktail. It’s an easy game. A little messy. But I like it.
I generally try not to reveal drunk me on a first date… Especially if the dude seems creepy and I feel like I need to be on guard. Anyone remember Mr Sex Pest?! But my gut told me Mr Reliable was cool. He wasn’t trying to stuff me with alcohol. He simply enjoyed a drink as much as I do. Tick.
Anyhoo, while Mr Reliable was ticking all my boxes (insert dirty joke here) I suddenly realised that I had no idea how he felt about me. It’s pretty easy to spend an entire first date analysing your person’s behaviour to figure out if they dig you… Is he making heaps of eye contact? Is he genuinely laughing at my dumb jokes? Has he found moments to accidentally touch my arm? But with Mr Reliable I was so comfortable (drunk) that I hadn’t done any of this. And so, when he went to the bar to get our last drink, I found myself panicking. What if he doesn’t like me as much as I like him?
Was this love story going to end in rejection?
I tried to shake off the dread. Be cool I told myself. Just drink the final surprise cocktail and go with the flow.
Of course that’s the opposite of what I actually did.
When Mr Reliable returned (with a martini, swoon) I decided to blurt exactly what I was thinking:
Do you like me?
OMG. I wanted to smash my head against the table as soon as the words came out of my mouth. What in the bloody hell is wrong with me? What happened to subtlety? And mystery? Absolute fail. Yet before I could run away Mr Reliable gave me an answer in the most beautiful way possible… He took my hand.
And he kissed me.
Okay, it probably didn’t look like that after copious amounts of booze. But let’s just pretend it did. Because – yay! As you know, my online dates have been far from romantic. The closest I’ve come to a pash was my lingering peck with Mr Suave. Oh, and of course Mr Smoochy’s constant (failed) attempts to get his tongue in. But they don’t count. Because they were fez.
But this, this was a real, spine tingling kiss. You know what I’m talking about. Yeah you do.
What happened after that is a bit of a blur. We walked along the water for a bit. Kissing. Talking shit. Enjoying being together and fancy free. Then he walked me to a cab. And although it was tough to say goodbye, we went our separate ways.
When I got home my phone lit up with a message from him – he’d wished he’d come home with me. The feeling was absolutely mutual. But I get why it didn’t happen. We’d just met. And were willing to invest a decent amount of time into getting to know each other. That’s wonderful, right? Well, his take on it was a little bit different…
Because the second half of the message went something like this:
But I’m glad I didn’t, because I really like you and I don’t want that to change.
Is that weird? Or simply self-aware?
Looking back on some (very short) relationships, his words kind of tell the right story… Have you been there? You meet someone awesome. You think you’re on the way to Loveland. So you make a stop in Sexytown. And then all of a sudden, you’ve reached the end of the road.
But can we really blame Sexytown for that? Or was the relationship only ever destined to be short and sweet? Perhaps that’s all one of the participants (I won’t name names) ever wanted. Or, perhaps we shouldn’t analyse/ simplify relationships like this… Perhaps things happen as they happen. If they’re strong, they last. If they don’t, they’re not meant to be. So maybe we shouldn’t kill all the spontaneity and excitement trying to time exactly when the raunch happens. Agreed.
So I wrote back saying I catch his drift, but if he really likes me, it’s not going to disappear so easily. He was impressed by my openness, and agreed. So despite the killer hangover the next day, we were back on track.
But did we go on a second date?
Who am I kidding… I can’t create a mystery hook for this post – of course we did!