Sunday, January 9, 2011

A Date With A Unicorn Pt5: The Second Date Continued

After the Spy Museum, Mr. Unicorn told me we were heading to dinner within walking distance. He held my hand and we walked down the chilly streets of Chinatown. As we approach Zaytinya from down the block he emphasized that we were NOT going there. It was probably nothing but it made me curious. Did he not like Zaytinia? Because I loved that place. The food. The wine. The service. The atmosphere. I'd been on at least one first date there awhile ago, a large birthday dinner party and for many hh cocktails with friends. I wondered if he thought it was too trendy, or not trendy enough or maybe that it had been trendy but was past its prime. "Stop it, T, I told myself. You're overthinking everything again. Shut up and just talk to him. "So where ARE you taking me," I asked. "Somewhere that's good to go to from time to time," he replied. Shit. Shit. Shit. SHIT. I thought. He's taking me somewhere really nice. Meaning expensive. I was starting to feel really guilty about all the money he was shelling out on me. Not to mention all this lavish attention was making me embarrassed almost. Exposed. Pressured. Am I worth all this? What does he expect in return? Ugh.

I nervously told him that I hoped he wasn't taking me anywhere too nice because I wasn't dressed for it (I'd just come from work. I looked fine in a purple sleeveless dress, black cardigan, black tights and black ballet flats but I wasn't formal at all.) He calmed all my insecurities when he said, "Don't be crazy. You look beautiful."

Mr. Unicorn open the doors of Oya for me and it was incredible inside. I told him in all my time I'd lived in DC I couldn't believe I had never been there and I was excited to try a new and different restaurant. On that note, Oya is stunning. It is a large dimly lit room with glass chandeliers, faux fire that runs along the length of one wall, a cascading waterfall that hides the otherwise open kitchen and large white pillars that seem to emulate bubbles or wind or both. Its a truly dark, ethereal and romantically transformative environment and I was thrilled to be in this lovely place. If he was trying to please and impress me he didn't need to go any further. Signed, sealed, delivered- I'm yours. (And the dinner hadn't even started yet.)

I let Mr. U lead the way behind the hostess to our table. He started to sit down at the seat facing outward from the wall. Before he got there I interrupted, "Actually, can I sit there?" At first he seemed accommodating like no problem but then I could tell that when he realized he'd be staring at the wall all night instead of the deliciously stimulating surroundings he was momentarily visibly perturbed. Oh ho ho, I thought. What do we have here? Mr Unicorn has an actual flaw? My, my. I was wondering when they would show up. "I'm sorry," I told him. "I hate that you have to stare at the wall all night, but Ive never been here before and I really wanna look at everything." "It's fine," he said. I wished I believed him but I didn't. However, I couldn't dwell on it too long. I'd gotten what I wanted hadn't I? I couldn't further penalize him for something so trivial.

We picked up our menus and everything looked amazing. My brain was fried though from a long week at work. The thought of sifting through more options exhausted me. At work I make decisions all day. Every minute. And for the most part, I make those decisions without a blink of hesitation. But somehow when I get off work, the ability to proactively navigate life's options exhausts me. What bar should we go to? What kind of food should we eat? What movie should we rent? I told him all of this, that everything looked too good and this was making it hard to pick. Since he'd been there before, I asked him what he recommended. "Would you like me to choose for you," he asked. That would be great I said and gave another sigh, this one of relief.

Some girls might hate that - having a man order for them. It might seem too outdated or traditional but I couldn't have been happier to let him take the reins on this one. It's not that I was trying to be girly or anything like that. I genuinely didn't feel like making decisions and he got it. He got me. And he provided me with what I needed in that instance. Again, I don't know if that makes me sound lame - unable to decide my own entree - no choice would've been wrong - but I was tired, I commented I couldn't decide, he took over. End of story. It was easy and remarkable.

He picked wonderful things too. A bottle of Malbec. Lobster pineapple rolls, crunch tuna and spicy salmon. Perfection. "Can we handle a whole bottle," he asked before ordering? "Oh, I think we can," I responded with a mischievous smile.

The wine came. The food came. It was delicate and delectable. I couldn't have chosen better. The conversation, once again came and came without hesitation or silence or disinterest. It was lively. It was back and forth. It was personal.

Each topic became more and more complex, more and more serious. I felt like we should turn back to superficial things. Where we liked to eat and drink and go out in D.C. What work was like. What college had been like. Places we had traveled. But it was too late and there was no turning back. We talked about politics and then religion. Religion in extreme depth. Unusual or painful relationships with family members. I even told him how sick I'd been last year and all the other obstacles I'd come across that had made it the complete year from hell and how I'd pulled myself out of the 2010 quicksand to a better person ready to face a better 2011. It was a fast-moving train that couldn't be stopped. One conversation propelled another. One emotional revelation led way to a more revealing memory. And not one thing he told me made me like him less. Or question him more. Or doubt our compatibility. He only became more and more interesting and fascinating and worthy of investigation. Who is this guy and where did he come from? What an interesting life! What great perspective on his experiences! I just wanted to know more, more, more. I could only hope, that across the table, he was thinking and feeling the same things about me.

It was all too wonderful to bear. The flickering of the candlelight, the sheen of the chandeliers, my reflection in his eyes. He was being so honest and open with me and we were really continuing to hit it off and connect and suddenly my heart filled with dread and became anxious with guilt. "I HAVE TO TELL YOU SOMETHING!!" (I had interrupted him and blurted out, unable to hold in my secret anymore). "I've lied to you, about something," I said. "I've lied to you and I feel terrible about it." "Okay," he said, looking at me confused and uncertain as how to react to my sudden and unexplained outburst. "Okay", he said...what is it?" I took a breath and looked down at my lap, unable to look him in the eyes.

To be continued...

T

24 comments:

WashingTina said...

Another cliffhanger?!?!?! Geez, Toddy, you're killing me.

I love Oya...a great location for a romantic evening. Sounds like he's got good taste!

@KellyAlysia said...

I agree with Tina. are you going to tell him you have a blog?! no, right? that can't be it. you are going to tell him you think he's too perfect?

closetrockstar said...

AWWWWWWWWWWW no fair!!!

Toddy said...

Come on guys go w it!!! And other than my TBC what did you think???? -T

WashingTina said...

He sounds like a good match for you! And I really like when a date is well-planned. Us boring old married folks don't do much of that anymore (or WH and I don't, really). I still say...relax and enjoy!

Sassy Marmalade said...

I love Oya! Sounds like a really great date ... hope the cliffhanger ends well. :)

It does seem like you are relaxing a little more and that's definitely a good thing!

Clicking Frogs said...

Nooooo.... I read all the Unicorn posts yesterday and was delighted to find #5 today... and you do this to me? Just leave me hanging?

Toddy said...

Oh Washingtina- two comments on one post. That makes me want to cyber kiss you (do you think WH would mind?); he is a good man and a good match for me. Unfortunately that means that this blog is gonna get really boring real soon.

Sassy-im doing my best to chill out. Really trying!

Closetrockstar- thanks for reading!

KellyAlysia- very funny girl. It is true, hes pretty perfect-for ME. Im not positive all women everywhere would drool over him but hes perfect for me and he treats me perfectly so there you go.

Clicking Frogs- welcome to my blog and thanks for the catchup! I hope you started w "New Year, New Man." bc thats where i first re-meet Mr. Unicorn. Then the Date w a Unicorn entries 1-5 follow... I cant wait to read your blog as well. Online dating totally intimidates me so apparently Ive got a lot to learn from you.

Sorry for the cliffhanger. But I fear there are many more in this blog's future. Cheers, T.

DefJamDemocrat said...

Ahhhh! What did you say? I don't check your blog for one day and I come and there's this? Argh!

But, yay! I'm so happy for you.

J said...

I just found your blog, and wow, I love it a lot. First of all, brilliant unicorn analogy! Also loved the post about how annoying it is to be "crush-crazy" (could not identify with that more). Your romance with Mr. Unicorn is lovely to read about and sounds extremely promising. Can't wait to read more!
-J

A single girl... said...

Toddy--- I want to know what happened...post again asap! haha. Also, missed you at the HH last night...would love to try to meet up again sometime.

silverstar said...

Dun dun duhhh ;-) .... I like to take dates to Oya. Amazing cocktails (incidentally, Zola at Spy Museum has to-die-for cocktails too) They tend to dive right into menu and say we're gonna have this and that though. Perhaps indicative on how these relationships turn out. ;-/

Toddy said...

DefJam- thanks for your well wishes. I can ALWAYS count on you to want what is best for me.

J-Wow, thanks for the awesome compliments. As for the unicorn analogy I can't take FULL credit for it. It was a combination of a post written by Hilarity in Shoes (@hilarity_shoes) and conversations between myself and Cupcake and Shoes (@mepper), DateMeDCBlog and @sassy marmalade. However, I definitely brought my own perspective, humor and twist to the metaphor.

A single girl - how did the hh go? Hope it was a resounding success! I will try to post soon. Though I'm not convinced that will satsify you as the next several posts have twists :-)

Silverstar - what is this, a MAN commenting on my blog? egad! but sir! Thanks for your imput. If you're taking your dates to Oya then you've got good taste. Perhaps you havent clicked with the right girls is all yet. Good luck and cheers, T.

quarterforherthoughts said...

Okay, I feel ripped off by that ending! lol

I'm way impressed with his choice of restaurant and that is very appropriate at this stage in dating, but I do hope eventually he is able to mix it up a bit with low key nights as well.

Now ON WITH THE STORY! lol

silverstar said...

To T and all of you lovely ladies, if a guy takes you to Oya, he should by all means give you the cushion seat with the view, but ensure that you are seated at one of the tables with the wall mirror, so while he is looking at the wall, he actually can see all of the action (fire, waterfalls, etc) behind him.

And (this is going to sound very Marty McFly-ish -- work with me here) if your date at Oya swipes his hand across the table and knocks over a candle right on to the exposed foot of the woman dining next to you, at least wait to see if she then later spills her wine all over the table before you write him off and see that that was fate :)

Toddy said...

Wow dee dow. Silverstar. Bestill my beating heart. It's too bad I met Mr. Unicorn before you because you sound like a REAL WINNER. Welcome to the "Potential Unicorn" club my friend because you are definitely a contender and there aint no Charlies in this girls club to keep you down. And for the recornd I would NEVER write off a guy for being clumsy as I am the QUEEN of clumsy. I spill and bump into things and fall constantly, so much so that its down right humiliating and tiresome. In fact, tonight I told Mr. U that if he stuck with me long enough he'd be sure to have something or another spilled on his best shirt. You know what he said? "Looking forward to it." The right girl for you silverstar, would say the same. Or just be glad that she could mess up and you'd owe her a gimme. Thanks for the male commentary! The testosterone is makin' me thirsty! And cheers, T.

silverstar said...

T, I am honored to be initiated into your Potential Unicorn contender club :). I must say it does change my perspective on that whole Unicorn concept - I've been wary from the outside looking in, but the view is pretty good from inside!

By the way, my Oya candle handywork must have been endearing to my Lil' Lawyer Gal, as that began the longest relationship I've had of late.

Toddy said...

Silverstar- Id be interested why you were wary of the Unicorn perspective? I can see how u might think it creates unreasonable expectations of men by women but thats not it. Mr. U is not tall, gorgeous, perfect by any means. But hes finally, finally someone that makes sense. That i have stuff in common w, get along w, am attracted to that ALSO feels the same about me. In a way, mistreatment by men made me Lower my stds so that a nice, normal guy who didnt piss all over me became my holy grail. Mr U is well above those base standards but he didnt need to be to make the PMC status.

silverstar said...

T it's complicated (and personal) and I dont want to turn your comments section into guest posts :). But I do welcome *your* concept of a Unicorn Man, that he doesn't have to check all these boxes to just feel right for you. One never hears talk of men "settling" or the push/pull debate on whether men should do so, in the way that it is a hot topic for women.

I don't want to stir up trouble with the sisterhood of the DC relationship bloggers, but I've noticed that quite a few of these women's chief complaint about DC men is not measuring up to their idea of Unicorn man. What follows in the complaint is a knee-jerk likening to a certain French general. Now I don't know of or read any male-authored relationship blogs, but I've never come across talk of a reciprocal Amazon complex or undesirable/inadequate personality traits ascribed to a physical attribute. Sure there is a weightist retort to the heightist charge, but that's not really a valid comparison.

In conclusion it's just so refreshing (and reassuring) to see you take a chance at happiness and love with a guy you might have overlooked that now has a real chance to pleasantly surprise and exhilerate you. I can't help but wonder whether when the others find a man that meets their exacting Unicorn specifications that to them are predictive of relationship success, whether they actually achieve harmony and bliss so fully realized.

Clicking Frogs said...

I didn't take "the Unicorn" in that manner at all. It's definitely not an exacting standard in this case and it shouldn't even be that difficult, but trust me, it is. I'm paraphrasing here, but as I understood it "the Unicorn" is basically a normal guy who also has the exacting specifications of being slightly taller (I'm 5'2", so generals may apply), having a job (maybe go so far as to say, career?) and actually being single (should we even have to specify this?) and somewhat sane.

Toddy said...

Silverstar- you can GUEST POST for me ANYTIME. If you want, I will even post it shortly after one of my Unicorn cliffhanger episodes oooohweee, ooh. You definitely have a nice way with words and good ideas so let me know.

Clicking Frogs- you nailed the definition on the head. sheesh girl you are PAYING ATTENTION. I like it! No, I love it! (I've had way too much coffee this morning). Yes- the idea was I kept getting hit on guys that either had no job or no goals or interests in life whatsoever, or that wasn't really single or emotionally available, whatever that means, and/or were shorter (and weighed less) than me or someone who was crazy and treated me like crap or psycho. And I was thinking slim pickings, eff this, getting a nice, normal, slightly taller guy with SOME goal of something to do with his life MIGHT AS WELL BE LIKE FINDING A UNICORN. And there you go... It sounds like how can that be but I assure you, I went on about 100 dates with cretons and I assure you, this. can. be.

Thanks for the comments guys. Good stuff. T.

Jolene said...

Good thing the next posts are written because these cliffhangers would be killing me otherwise! The dinner he chose again sounds like what M would have chosen for us...are you sure it's not the same man? ;-P

Toddy said...

Jolene, thanks for your comment as always. It better not be the same man!! I will fight you for him and flip you for realz...Except that it sounds like you two are WAY more serious than me and Mr. U so you've probably already won if that were the case. But seriously, by the way, your name doesn't link to your blog maybe because you need to "publicly" allow or set your profile? I'm not that tech saavy but people might want to link over to your site if you continue commenting on my posts which I hope you do. Cheers, T.

Jolene said...

Hmm, maybe because I comment using my Google login, not my blog URL. I'll have to fix that!