Remember when I said I was "Over Men Again" and swore off dating for the upteenth-thousandth time just as I was asked out by a Geeky British guy on a Monday trivia night at Wonderland Ballroom? Well I do...
This was weeks ago and I wasn't all that inspired to share anything about the Geeky Brit. It was a very very ordinary case of agreeing to go out with someone, going out with them once and then determining you didn't want to see them anymore. Fail. Again.
But thinking back on it, there are some interesting questions to consider.
So...my mother (who drives me crazy) and is always on a mission to improve her apparently imperfect daughter (as mother's always seem to do) told me recently that I was SUPERFICIAL when it came to men. Why Mom? Because I have good taste in men. Because I'm attracted to attractive people. Because I am lucky enough to be attractive and therefore can attract attractive people?
"Looks fade" she always said. And she's right. She's always right (as mother's often infuriatingly are.) But on the other hand I can't help who I like and don't like. Occasionally a less attractive person will grow on me through their personality and our shared experiences together, but more often than not, I like a nice pair of baby blue eyes, a thick head of dark hair and white boy chunka butt. (If you don't know what a chunka butt is then come hang with me sometime during happy hour on Capitol Hill and we'll spend a pint or two checking out white boy booty in khakis. This will not disappoint). Just sayin...
Unfortunately, I do care what my mother thinks (as daughters can't seem to help) and I certainly DONT want to be a superficial person. But how do I date someone and give them a chance if I have no interest in sleeping with them? I mean, that is an important part of a relationship is it not?
However, in an attempt to repel a sense of superficiality, I've definitely tried to lower my standards recently. I came up with the following standards: As long as someone seemed NORMAL, NICE, AVAILABLE and NOT A CRAZY PERSON and had the good taste (if I do say so myself) to LIKE ME (my personality/looks/whatever) and made the effort to ask me out (which I know isn't always easy for the fellas) then I would go out with them. What could it hurt? Life's about meeting people and having fun right?
So...let's just say I've been on A LOT OF BAD DATES. No chemistry. No attraction. No second dates. But... at least I'm giving people a shot. Whose to say I'm such a catch? I'm not. I'm Type A, neurotic, superclean yet supercluttered, forgetful, ADD, aggressive, competitive, stubborn, overly talkative, obnoxious sports fan, bad dresser kind of a girl. A pair of dimples and big tits can't really erase all that can it?
Thus, one such victim of my personal reformation became the The Geeky Brit @Wonderland Ballroom one Monday night playing trivia with some friends. I wasn't there to meet guys. I wasn't interested in meeting guys. Like I said, I was over men again, and I was there to prove my complete single contentment. Thus, I ignored all smiles, all overt glances, and all introductory conversational remarks from strange men at the bar. Which must have driven them all crazy, because I was asked out by like 3 guys in one night. The Geeky Brit was sitting at the table next to us. I didn't notice him, except for the fact that the hosting team kept giving that guy and his table free drinks for giving the funniest answers. They sucked at trivia, but had a great sense of humor. Now that is sexy. But like I said, I was completely immune to sexiness. Plus, this guy wasn't sexy. Like at all. Geeky Brit spoke to both girls in my my group of friends. First T, then A. However, T was a Republican. GB was a progressive - hello Britain! And so when T said she liked Sarah Palin, he quickly moved on. A is a Democrat, so they had a lot to talk about. I focused on my fancy beer and sang along to the music playing throughout the bar.
At the end of the night, I was hanging out by the bar with A, talking to the girl that works at WB as the trivia Emcee, asking her how long she'd been doing it and the like. When Geeky Brit and his friends were leaving, he turned and looked at me and smiled. I smiled back and raised my beer. He left. Then came back. He walked straight up to me and said, "You are beautiful. And you seem nice. Can I get your number so we can get drinks some time?" Just. like. that.
I'm always in awe of the ability of men to completely unnerve me just by asking for my number.
He was honest. Straightforward. He wanted my number. According to the new "I'll date anyone" (unless they're bat shit crazy) rule, I had to give him my number. So I did.
He called. And we ended up going to Mighty Pint, the week of Thanksgiving, for their dress like Pilgrims and Indians, keg-kill event. It was fun. We had a lot to talk about. His British upbringing and when I lived in London. Politics. Childhood. Family. Drinking and Dining in the District. But then he dropped it on me...
He was 22 years old. He was doing an unpaid internship on the Hill. He was living with 6 other guys in a hostel. He was going back to London in four months. Okay, so not just NO...HELLS TO THE NO.
We finished our second round of drinks and then I took a deep breath and said the "I don't play games" right thing to say: "Look you seem really nice and I've enjoyed talking to you. But any sort of long-term connection or relationship with you isn't possible and I'm not interested in having anything casual with you either. I'm sorry. But that's just how I feel. I thought I should just be honest with you."
Apparently that blew his mind. He thanked me for not dicking him around. And then tried to convince me to give him a shot. To go out on second date with him. To consider something casual. It'd be fun he said. Why not have some fun? I mean, what else are you looking for?
What else am I looking for? That was a great question. The truth is, I don't know what I want. I know I don't want something casual or cheap. I'm also not trying to find the one, get hitched and become a baby factory. I think what I want is to find someone nice and normal, who thinks I'm nice and normal. Who respects me and treats me well and understands that I'm a lawyer and can't spend every waking moment with him and wouldn't want to either. Spend some time together (occasionally) and see what happens. Is that a relationship? Or is that just dating? Labels always make things so confusing.
"Come on," he said, "just have some fun with me. I really like you." Could I give the Geeky Brit a chance? Could I, a successful, financially stable, attorney in her upper 20's gallavant around D.C. dating a 22 year old, broke, unpaid intern on the hill? A skinny, immature, t-shirt wearing fun-having foreigner?
No. I couldn't. I'm was just too damn old for that and I just didn't want to. Because when it comes down to it, I'm in search of a man. A real man. For fun. And maybe more. But I can't date a boy. Or a man-boy. Any. More. Perhaps, after all, superficial or no, I do have some standards. I'm not sure whether they will apply to the "I'll date anyone once" (lest they're bat shit crazy) rule, but they do apply to the "I won't date anyone twice" rule. And I can only hope that those standards actually correspond to some real live, living, breathing men out there and not just to unicorns.