The Time I Wasn’t Actually Dumped

In previous posts, I’ve been mentioned the girl from my office who I like a lot.  However, as time has passed, I’ve found it more difficult to try pursue anything with her.  She rarely seems to express interest in me, though she is the one who kissed me on our second date.  I tried to decipher her intentions of sitting near my desk at work one time, a handful of late night IMs and perhaps purposefully walking by my desk at the of the day on a Friday.  All of those events may have been signals that we should continue things or they may have just been me seeing signs that weren’t there.  So, because I’m uncomfortable trying to express any type of romantic interest while physically in the office, I’m pretty much placing her on the back burner.  It’s been three weeks since we went out for a second time and she’s showed no interest in spending time with me, despite a handful of my own subtle attempts to ask her out (“Let me know if you’re at all interested in getting a bite this weekend” “Will do!”).

But then something serendipitous happened.

At the beginning of February, before I started this blog, I thought I was dumped by a girl, a Grad Student, after two dates.  She had sent me a text saying she wanted to cancel our third date.  She “wasn’t feeling it” and said she had to settle some personal issues — I took that as an “it’s not you, it’s me” break up line.  I liked her a lot, she intrigued me, but I wasn’t completely heartbroken — things are always easier if they reject you early on.  I ended up trying hard to look on the bright side and moved on fairly quickly despite two nights of mild depression about it.

Fast forward five weeks.  I get a text message from Grad School Girl on a Saturday night.

Grad School Girl: “Hey! What are you up to tomorrow?”

Me: “Hi! Actually a friend is in town from the East Coast and we’re doing brunch tomorrow, but I should be free after 1 pm.  What’s up?”

Grad School Girl: “Gotcha! I wanted to see if you were interested in farmers-marketing in the AM but perhaps another time. (I’ve resolved [some of the personal things I was going through] and would love to hang out if you’re still down 🙂 )”

Me: “I’ll have to take a rain check” … “But let’s hangout sometime soon”

Grad School Girl: “Sounds good.”

Okay, so for the five weeks preceding this conversation, I was very confident this girl had dumped me and moved on.  I was now pursuing Office Girl and had come to terms that she wasn’t interested in me.  But, to be honest, I was still really attracted to Grad Student Girl.  She was smart, extremely talented, witty and gorgeous.  We actually texted a few more times that night, just catching up a little bit.  But soon after, I got sucked into work (and was in the process of giving up on Office Girl) and didn’t actually officially follow up on meeting up with Grad School Girl — I had already spent weeks training myself not to think about her.  So three weeks later she sends me another text while I’m literally on my way to the airport asking if I was free that night.  I wasn’t, but I promised I would let her know when I got back to the west coast I would reach out to her.

So early last week I returned to San Francisco and sent her a text setting up dinner.  She’s vegan, so I threw out a vegan restaurant and we agreed to meet there.  Dinner was a little awkward, since it was kind of like a first date but also kind of like a third date.  We had gone on two dates at the end of January / beginning of February over the course of 6 days and then hadn’t spoken for over a month.  After a bit, we started developing something of a report, catching up on the issues she had worked through as well as some of my own personal chaos.  We wrapped up dinner pretty quickly, which I surreptitiously paid for while she was in the bathroom (she wanted to split it, which I like, but sometimes I like to pay — especially since she’s a student and I have a full time job).

She quickly suggested drinks and we wandered around the neighborhood a bit looking for a bar we might like.  After accidentally going into a lesbian bar, we found a crowded Irish pub where I got a beer and she had a whiskey.  We got into more deeper topics while we were there and, I think, for the first time had a slightly deeper connection than our previous conversations, which I felt good about.  Two drinks later, she suggests we go back to her apartment and have one more drink and who am I to say ‘no’ to a question like that?

We actually end up going back to my place where I open a bottle of wine.  We spend the next 2-3 hours taking turns playing my guitar — she has an incredible voice and writes beautiful songs, compared to my amateur self taught mimicry of Mumford and Sons.  I don’t remember exactly how she made the move, but at some point she ended up sitting very close to me and she leaned in and kissed me.  I had spent the past hour trying to figure out how I could find a way to kiss her, but I suppose she was feeling more aggressive than me.  We kissed several more times.  I considered pushing things forward, but decided not to considering how much she had to drink.  I didn’t want this to become a drunken mistake, I wanted it to be a beautiful night.  It was at least 2 am and she said that she should probably head out soon and I subtly responded implying that she should spend the night.  We kept getting distracted by conversation and by 3 am, we’re both exhausted and literally falling asleep.  As she doses off, I tell her we should just go to bed.  We curled up in my bed (clothed) and both fell into a drunken sleep.

At 8 am, I got up to get us glasses of water and when I got back to the bedroom she was getting ready to leave.  Had she been interested in staying I might have offered to make breakfast.  But she needed contact solution and things to do, so she got her things together and headed for the door.  I kissed her goodbye and she was gone.

Dressing Up: Wear Red

Every few months or years a new study comes out that shows the impact of the color red on people’s perceptions of attractiveness.  Interestingly, the color red when placed on or near a person’s picture, regardless of sex, increases their attractiveness to the opposite gender.

A new series of studies, profiled by Slate, showed that a person wearing red will be rated more attractive than the same person wearing any other color.  The study even looks at online dating profiles: a series of sixty four women on an online dating site had six different colored shirts rotated through them and the red shirt always seems to be named the most attractive and sexually appealing.

So, in short: if you’re looking to appeal to the opposite sex in your online dating profile: either wear red or stand in front of something red.

Unfortunately, the only solid red shirt I own has a cheesy Coke logo on it.

Fearing Aggression

I’ve mentioned the girl I like in my office in a handful of posts so far and I think it’s time for a quick update.  Unfortunately, the update isn’t really about progress, it’s more about my own trepidation.  As I’ve mentioned before, the last time we went out, she ended the night by instigating a kiss.  It seemed at the time that there might have been something there.  But now I’m worried that maybe one too many glasses of wine may have been behind that kiss.

We left that night similar to the first night we went out.  It was a late Friday night and as I was leaving her I asked, “When can I see you again?” hoping that maybe she would be free on Saturday night.  Both times she replied, “Monday.”  Of course, Monday means “some time next week” as I it’s rare I would see her in the office on Monday and if I did see her, I would most likely just say a professional “Hi, how’s it going?” before receiving a one word response and moving on.  Fast forward to that Friday — I was hoping to hang out with her again, but she was busy.  I gave her a simple, “cool, well have a good Friday.  Let me know if you want to hang out on Saturday or if you friend ditches you tonight.”  No big deal.

The next Friday I was hoping to catch her after an early evening work party maybe to meet up for a drink or a bite to eat.  I actually had a handful of opportunities to grab her attention.  In fact, she spent a good 30 minutes or so working at a table near my desk — which she rarely, if ever does — and I wonder to this day if she was hanging out close to me hoping I might drop by and ask her out.  Though, I could be reading too much into it, so I opted not to approach her until later in the evening.  Unfortunately, by the time I worked up the gumption to ask her out, she had already left for the night.  I caught her on work Instant Message and she was already home.  Before I could see if she was up for grabbing a drink or something, she mentioned she was already lying in bed at 8 pm and was absolutely exhausted.  That was okay too.  She works very hard, which I admire, and I wasn’t about to be upset if she needed a Friday night for herself.  I signed off the chat with a similar, “Get some sleep! Let me know if you want to grab a drink or a bite to eat on Saturday or something.”  “Will do” she replied.  Of course, she never reached out.

Jump to the Friday of last week.  I was working a little bit late and was surprised to see her roaming around the area around my desk.  She didn’t drop by my desk at first, rather she sat down and talked with a co-worker for a bit.  Again, I could be reading too much into this, but it’s very unusual for her to be hanging around my area of the office.  After a while, she passed by desk and stopped in quickly to say hi.  Granted, I made eye contact with her as she was passing, so it’s possible she felt obligated to say hi.  I asked what she was up to this weekend and she said her good friend was in town visiting over the weekend.  Obviously I wasn’t about to ask her to ditch her friend to hang out with me and she didn’t seem to be inclined to invite me along to her St. Paddy’s Day plans.  She never inquired as to my plans.  I later found out a different co-worker was at the same party as her on Saturday night and he almost called me to come drop by, but he didn’t.  For those of you who read my post last week, I was considering asking her over on Saturday night and I would cook her dinner, but I wasn’t about to ask her that if she had a friend in town visiting from the East Coast.

In between these Fridays, we occasionally talk online, usually for 30 minutes or so right before signing off Instant Messenger and going to bed.  Often she instigates the conversations, which gives me signs of hope.  But, again, I could be reading too much into it.

A week ago, we had out annual sexual harassment seminar and the lawyer who came in to outline policy had a whole slew of examples of what constitutes harassment and what does not, often with real world stories.  A funny story he told was about a client who was accused of sexual harassment after he asked out a girl in his office 9 or 10 times and he “couldn’t take no for answer.”  Basically, the girl always had a lame excuse (“I’m washing my hair” … “my mom is in town” … “I’m meeting friends for dinner” etc) and the guy couldn’t take a hint.  Long story short, the charges were dropped when it became evident that she never actually said “no” to his advances, but was being polite white the guy was just oblivious to the fact that she wasn’t interested.

I wonder if maybe I’m like that guy.  That maybe the girl in my obvious isn’t actually interested and the two times we kissed were just because she was a little tipsy and not thinking straight at the time.  But then why is she chatting with me online? Maybe she’s just being nice.  Maybe she chats with a lot of co-workers.  So today, I’m afraid to ever be aggressive again.  I don’t want to be the idiot who can’t take a hint.  Over the past 5 weeks, I’ve gone out with her twice and “sort of” asked her out two other times, though they weren’t direct invitations to specific dates.  I really like this girl, I thought maybe she liked me too.  But maybe I’m reading signs that aren’t actually there.  Because I work with her, dating is a very delicate subject.  I don’t want to cross boundaries and I certainly don’t want her to file harassment charges against me (though I don’t think I’ve been that aggressive).

I think I’m going to tone down my hopes and leave things in her hands.  I hate doing that since I think a lot of girls prefer to let the guy do “the asking” even though they obviously don’t have to in this day and age.  And I generally don’t mind asking a girl who I think is interested in me.  But, again, I don’t want to be the oblivious idiot.  Hopefully I’m not passing up on a real opportunity here.

Superficiality

I had lunch with a friend at work today.  I’ve only known him for about 4 months (virtually my entire time here in San Francisco) but this was our first lengthy one-on-one discussion that managed to not involve any work discussion.  So, of course, we talked about the only interest we really have in common: dating.

I consider myself something of a hopeless (hopeful?) romantic.  I don’t necessarily think I’m anyone’s prince charming or a guy who’s completely devoid of sexist notions — though I do my best to avoid them.  I do think, however, that I’m in the minority of guys who likes all of the following: romantic comedies (When Harry Met Sally & You’ve Got Mail among others), holding hands, kissing in the rain, dancing at weddings, wine bars, a girl who gives good mind, cooking together (in a class or at home), sending her flowers, supporting her dreams and snuggling on the couch watching a movie or TV.  Okay, maybe none of that makes me a hopeless romantic, but it does make me cheesy.  Regardless, I tend to like girls who are smart, ambitious and compassionate.  While I’d be lying if I said that someone’s empirical attractiveness is not something that catches my eye, I simultaneously don’t need a girl to be cover-girl-gorgeous to fall for her.  In fact, I love getting to a point where it’s the minor flaws that I find most attractive about a person — eventually you don’t see empirical attractiveness, you just see the girl.  And seeing that girl will make your heart flutter even if she isn’t about to walk the Victoria Secret runway.

Okay, so back to lunch: my co-worker and I were discussing past longer relationships and girls we’d dated recently or flirted with recently since moving to San Francisco.  Out of no where he said something interesting, “I hate it when you find the perfect girl — except she’s just not attractive enough.  You know?  So close.”  I’m paraphrasing a bit, but it was something very close to that.  For him, a girl not being absolutely gorgeous is a big enough flaw to not be interested in them.  I clarified with him that she could be “average” looking and that wasn’t good enough.

In my interactions with this co-worker outside of the office, I’ve seen him be somewhat of a ladies man.  He’s managed to bring three different girls to four of the parties I’ve seen him at, which I suppose implies he’s charming or at least persuasive.  I’m an awful judge of whether or not a man is attractive, so I can’t really comment on that but I don’t think he’s particularly handsome (take that with a grain of salt).  He’s also not a “bad boy,” in that he’s an analyst at a tech start-up who doesn’t come across as a jerk when you first meet him.    So, I wonder, do girls realize that he’s prioritizing their looks above all of their other qualities?  I also wonder that if he were to ever marry a beautiful woman and then her looks faded if he would divorce her or cheat on her because her “most important” quality was no longer there?

I also think that part of his ability to pick up girls is just playing the odds.  If you approach enough girls you’re bound to get some yeses in the sea of nos.  And I wouldn’t say “he’s got game” either.  I’ve seen him try to pick up a girl in the bar and be literally pushed away for being too aggressive.  He was drunk at the time, so maybe he was just unaware of what he was doing, but I once saw him lean in to kiss a girl in a wall-to-wall crowded bar of 20-somethings and the girl had to push him away to make sure his lips didn’t make contact.  It’s the only time in my life I’ve ever seen a guy try to kiss a stranger so aggressively.

After he told me about his requirement that a girl is attractive, he expected me to sympathize with him.  “I don’t think I’m quite so superficial,” I replied somewhat baffled.  I couldn’t think of a more euphemistic word than superficial.  “Superficial?  I’m not superficial.  But you know what I mean,” he chuckled back.  I didn’t know what he meant.  He spent the rest of lunch showing me a dating app that I hadn’t seen in person called Tinder.   He showed how he carefully swipes through pictures of girls and only messages the attractive ones.

I suppose this is probably somewhat typical of both genders — to judge by looks first.  But I think both genders also have the ability and civility to rise above looks when looking for the right partner.  Our ability to be attracted to people’s physique or attractiveness is largely biological.  Our primal ancestors had to judge mates by physical cues that suggested fertility and longevity.  Today, we don’t need those cues, but the biology remains.  What makes the human brain so great, though, is our ability to reason beyond the biological to make better decisions.  When I look for Ms. Right, I look for the girl who I think best compliments my thoughts, feelings, interests and goals.  The girl that makes me a better me, or at least makes me want to be a better me.  Attractiveness is nice, but if it’s the #1 thing you’re looking for, it just seems superficial.

Online Consulting

Metro Magazine is the latest publication to point to online dating “consultants” as a burgeoning trend.  There are now services out there that will help you write or re-write your online dating profile for a nominal fee.  I don’t think I’ve met (or dated for that matter) anyone who has used a service like this and, if I did, I imagine the first date might not go so well.

I’ve seen a good amount of bad online dating profiles.  Sometimes these are just unflattering pictures, sometimes the profile is just so typical that I get bored after reading the self summary, sometimes a girl comes across as desperate.  But it’s unusual that I’ve come across a profile where I reached the conclusion that it’s the writing and formatting of a profile itself that is turning me off.  It’s usually that the girl just isn’t my type.

Granted, most of these online consultants are probably oriented towards men.  Generally, women have very little difficulty in getting guys to message them, especially when they live in a major city.  For girls, online dating is more of a process of sorting through all the “hey there” one-liner messages they get, messages asking if a girl would be interested in some kinky sex act, and the very small subset of messages from guys who are actually competent at writing a girl a message.

For guys, we live in a very different reality.  I tend to get 1-2 unsolicited messages from girls per week.  I got more messages when I lived in New York, but I assume that’s due to population differences.  I get the feeling that, unless you’re particularly good looking, no guy is going to be approached nearly as much as a girl is online.  It’s very traditional for a culture that has leaned increasingly towards gender equality in the dating world over the past decade.

So, for a guy, your profile is really there to bolster your credentials after you have sent a girl a presumably grammatically correct note that highlights or quips about something you found interesting/funny/provocative about their profile.  If your message is weak, it’s highly unlikely that (unless you’re extraordinary good looking), your profile is going to redeem you.  Having a standout profile helps, but it’s really a secondary measure.

I will concede a few things, though.  First, your picture is always important.  If your face is 90% acne or you have a goatee, it’s very unlikely that she’s going to message you back.  Second, it is possible to have a profile that’s so good that a girl is going to be intrigued enough to message you.

Focusing on that second point, I still think an online consultant is useless.  And that’s really just because an intriguing profile is usually a very accurate reflection of your personality.  If you don’t have the charm or wit to write a good profile yourself, someone writing one on your behalf is going to be easily contradicted by your writing style in messages and will certainly be belied when she meets you in person.

The key to a good online profile, I think, is to try to come across as fun and honest as possible.  Don’t show off, highlight what makes you you and try to make it clear what you think makes you a “catch.”  By being “a catch,” I don’t necessarily mean you should list off the items on your resume (your great education and well paying job), those are important and you should mention them.  But you should definitely highlight the activities that you like to do that you think would be something you could do when you meet Ms. Right.  For example, let’s say you’re an avid golfer.  That’s great, and you should mention it, but mention it with an inviting opportunity: “I love golfing on Saturday mornings.  But my short game is in need of some serious practice.  Want to challenge me to a game of mini-golf?  Bring it on.”  Or let’s say you’re a huge movie fan: “I love film, whether it’s mainstream or it’s something you can only find in an independent art house.  Right now, I’m trying to watch every film in the AFI Top 100.  I’m only at number 14, but I could use company as I try to get through the top 30 by the end of the year.”  Or you like to cook, “I’m always experimenting in the kitchen.  I’ve been meaning to take a cooking class in the next few months so I can actually cook with creme fraiche rather than just have a talent for spelling it.”

The point is that your okcupid profile needs to be honest and reflect your personal voice.  But it should also be inviting, that you are probably a person that could be fun to hang out with.  Having someone else write these elements is just going to make you look like a liar when you meet someone in person.  Also, paying $1500 for professional photos and hair/makeup will probably make you look a bit too posed and plastic.  Basically you’ll be the only guy among tens of thousands who is obviously using pro-shot images, that might actually make you stand out in a bad way.

In summary, if you’re considering paying for an online dating consultant, don’t.

[via Metro]

Office Romance (?)

I’m sure someone out there was curious as to whether or not the girl from my office and I went out Friday night.  Unfortunately, I’m starting off this post with bad news: we didn’t.  To be fair,  I think she was exhausted.  She worked very hard throughout the week and probably needed last night to head to bed nice and early.

Around three o’clock on Friday, I noticed she had set up her laptop at a table near my desk in the office.  She was there for a good hour.  I wonder, maybe she picked that spot because she was hoping I’d drop by and say ‘hi?’  Or maybe I’m reading into signals that aren’t there.  The fact is, I didn’t drop by or say anything.  I’m not sure how to act around her during those rare moments when we intersect at the office.  Do I act professional and just say ‘hi’ and continue walking?  Do I start up a conversation?  I have no idea what’s appropriate.  I also have no idea what she wants.

The fact of the matter is, we’ve “gone out” twice, and both times it was more of an organic date that happened out of circumstance rather than someone asking someone else out.  As I pointed to in my last entry, I really like this girl.  She’s smart, passionate and gorgeous.  But both times we’ve hooked up, albeit briefly, she had been drinking.  Maybe she views those times as mistakes?

The past two Fridays, when I seemed to have missed my shot to hang out with her after work (last Friday she already had plans and this Friday she went home before I could catch her to head to bed early), I sent her a message: let me know if you want to grab a drink or a bite over the weekend.  Neither time has she followed up.  Granted, usually I prefer to try to suggest something more specific, but, again, I’m not really sure what she wants or expects — maybe she doesn’t like me that way?

Then again, she has instigated things on the rare occasion.  For example, the second time we hooked up, she leaned in for the kiss that time — the first time I had.  On Tuesday night this week, she g-chatted me out of the blue seemingly just to say hi.  Granted, she might do that to a lot of co-workers.  I don’t know.  Maybe this isn’t really an office romance at all, maybe this is two drunken hookups and my own confusion about whether or not she’s sending signals.

So how do I work this out?  I don’t think there’s a definite answer.  After I missed my chance on Friday night, I spent the night brainstorming a path forward.  I think the plan is going to be this: unless she seems to want to hang out this coming Friday after work, I’ll suggest a more specific Saturday night date — rather than my typical casual, “let me know if you want to get a bite or a drink this weekend.”  I’m thinking of saying something more along the lines of “I was going to try to cook dinner at my apartment on Saturday night, any interest in coming over as an official taster?”  I’m a decent cook and I think romance is nearly unavoidable when you cook a dinner for two.  If she doesn’t seem interested, I might just ask her point blank: “do you want me to stop trying to ask you out every weekend?” — I think I can say it playfully enough that it won’t seem frustrated or bitter, but I just don’t want to spend my time dwelling on her if she’s not interested in.

(Probably) Bad Choices

I’m a big believer in the old phrase “don’t shit where you eat,” or, for those of you who aren’t familiar with the idiom, not dating your co-workers.  At my old corporate job on the East Coast, a girl I worked with for a few weeks on a project seemed to develop feelings for me (or at least seemed to be flirting with me — though I could be mistaken) and at the time I worked very hard to rebuke her invitations to hang out outside the office as politely as I could.  That’s usually a very good move especially in a formal office environment where tact and cordiality is critical to your career path and keeping a genuine reputation.

I moved out to the West Coast and now work for a small (though growing extremely quickly) tech company where I get to wear jeans to work.  Most people in the office are also very friendly with each other, frequently hanging out outside the office.  And, as is an office tradition, we often have several rounds of drinks in the office on Friday afternoons while catching up with outside teams.  It’s actually a really fun way to work, especially when you work really long hours and weekends, it’s nice to work out with the people you also like to spend time with.

So since I’ve started, the office has grown to nearly 400 people — like I said, we’re growing from a small tech start-up to a pretty good size now.  So there are a good amount of people I don’t see very regularly.  To be fair, there are now more people in the office than there were in my high school class.  A few weeks ago, I ran in to a girl on our HR team and we ended up running out for a drink to kill time until we met up with others from our office for a co-worker’s birthday party.  I learned a lot about her background.  She’s very smart (which I like), artistic (which I like), thoughtful (which I like) and very cute (which I like, but I’m going to pretend I always look for inner beauty first, regardless of whether or not it’s true).   She has great taste in music and occasionally laughs at my terrible jokes.

We ended up spending a long time together that night.  In fact I think we probably hung out alone for a good 4-5 hours before meeting up with a crowd from the office and sticking close to each others sides throughout the rest of the night.  Of course, after hanging out for what was then 6 or 7 hours, we had a lot to drink.  And, on impulse, I kissed her.  She didn’t exactly resist, in fact she seemed to encourage it.  We were both drunk, but I’d be lying if I said I hadn’t developed something of a major crush on her throughout the night.  Moreover, I can’t deny my heart wasn’t absolutely racing the entire time I spent with her after getting to know her.

I walked her home and we kissed several more times on the way to her place.  To be honest, I think partially (or perhaps entirely) due to her drunken state I think we could have gone “all the way” that night.  But I was sober enough to push back a little bit.  I don’t like having one night stands, especially when a girl is drunk and possibly making a decision she wouldn’t want to make when she was sober.  I’d rather “earn” that with a girl through trust and hopefully mutual feelings.  I walked her to her apartment, said goodnight and literally ran home out of excitement.

That was actually three weeks ago.  Two weeks ago, we hung out again a little bit but we were both exhausted.  Though we did end the night with a kiss again.  Last week she was busy.  Now it’s Friday and I’m not sure if I should ask her out after work again or not.  If this wasn’t a girl from my office, I’d schedule something on Wednesday.  But because I work with her, I have no idea how to handle it.  Perhaps luckily perhaps not, I rarely see her at work — she’s in HR and I’m in marketing, so there’s rarely a reason for us to cross paths.

I get the feeling that this is still a bad idea.  But I really like her.  Anyone ever had a positive experience dating in the office?  A recent study showed that 31% of office romances develop into marriages, so it can’t always be bad, right?

Needless to say I’ll be aggressively cleaning my apartment this morning.  Just in case.

Texting & Pacing Things Early On

I feel like I was born at a strange point in history in that I kind of sit between two generations of people: callers and texters.  Granted, I think most people under the age of 35 use text messaging with some frequency, I think there’s a divide somewhere around people currently under the age of 26-27 and older folks as the older of the two groups tend to have a general understanding that there are times you call and times you text.  The younger generation, however, seems to prefer texting above all — unless they’re calling mom and dad, whose texts are so riddled with typos it’s easier to just have a full blown conversation.

Since moving to San Francisco, I’ve gone out with three girls, 1-3 years younger than me.  In each case, the girls would tell me to text them — not call them.  I’m not a big believer in the “3 day rule” so I generally text the next day after a good date to tell them that I’m thinking of them and had a good time last night.  In fact, sometimes I’ll send a text or two after getting home from the date if we left things on a particularly high note.  But I find text messaging to be really fragmented and it’s tough after a while to really hold a conversation over it.  At some point, I’d rather just call and ask a girl what she’s up to then sit on my couch and meditate over exactly how I should phrase every single text message I send.

But calling a girl, especially one in her early twenties has become taboo — it’s playing things to aggressively.  But at the same time, I feel like I can’t quite get the rhythm of texting someone I don’t know very well — it’s too hard to know if they get when I’m joking or being serious.  So after a while, I feel like I lose texting steam.  I’d so much rather talk to them in person or on the phone.  This gets worse between dates #2 and #3.  I’m at that point with a girl right now and I feel like by not talking to her during the week, I’m hurting the chances that things will take off between us.  I’d rather sustain the momentum somehow.  Just not over text.

Am I the only one who has this problem?  How do you keep the fire burning between dates?  Especially when a girl only tends to be free on Friday and Saturday nights due to hectic work schedules.  If I see her on one Friday and hope to see her the next Friday, how often do I need to send her messages in the meantime to ensure that whatever spark might’ve been there the first date will still be there the second date?

I’m getting too old for this shit.

Act of Desparation? Men on Dattch

Working for a tech company, it’s difficult to go a few hours without perusing the tech press.  I came across an article while on my way home from work today on The Next Web.  The article covers the beta release of a new data app called “Dattch” that’s oriented towards lesbian dating.  This is an interesting niche as there aren’t many dating websites or apps devoted strictly towards lesbian dating.  Granted, there are some popular gay hookup apps, but none oriented towards relationships.  Currently the app is beta testing in the UK, but has intentions to roll out internationally sometime soon.

About halfway through the article, I couldn’t help but notice passage:

The idea of men making fake profiles to browse a lesbian site might sound spurious but Exton has been surprised at the rate and extent to which this happens. “Daily, we have about five guys registering for an invite and it’s unsubstantiated but the emails have a guy’s name on them. We’ve seen fake Facebook accounts set up to try and get invites. You’ll see they set up an account yesterday, have no friends but they like Dattch and something like ‘Lesbian and bi girlies of London’. It’s amazing. The fact that people will go to that extent to try and check out gay women or convert them or meet up with them.”

Now, I’ve been more or less single for about a year and a half.  And, like many (most?) men, I do find girl-on-girl erotica to be one hell of a turn on.  But, seriously?  What’s the game plan behind this?  Sign up for a lesbian dating site, set up a date and then reveal yourself to be a dude once you meet in person?  I’m sure this will go over real well.  Surely, she’ll realize that she’s no longer gay and invite you to a massive lesbian orgy that you’ve always fantasized about.  I can only think of maybe four or five gay female friends that I have and to be honest, the fact that their gay has really taken any potential sexual tension out of our interactions.  Do some guys think that being on a lesbian dating website will lead to something?  I know there are still people in the US who think that being gay is a choice — and I’m not looking to start a debate here — but there’s pretty much zero chance you’re about to “convert” a gay woman to go out with you via a lesbian dating app.  I don’t really get it.

[via The Next Web]

Apartment Preparedness

I’m not one to sleep with a girl on the first date.  I have a lot of friends who assure me that the third date is nearly a guarantee, but I don’t really subscribe to that theory either.  I like to let that part of a relationship evolve organically.  But, that doesn’t mean I don’t like to be prepared just in case.

I keep my apartment fairly clean generally.  I vacuum at least once a week, my bathroom is pretty spotless, and my furniture is all in pretty good shape.  But there are things I generally don’t keep 100% visitor-ready.  I rarely make my bed, for example.  Often, I’ll throw a sweater or two on a chair in my bedroom when I decide I don’t need that many layers and not re-fold them until a few days later.  I’ve been teaching myself guitar (gradually) and sometimes I leave it lying on a sofa in my living room.  So, the apartment isn’t spotless.

But I must admit, Thursday night and Friday morning, I start cleaning — just in case — and carefully make my bed.  And, to be honest, it’s not in case a girl wants to spend the night, it’s really just in case she wants to come up for a glass of wine or to hear my awful guitar playing.  I’ve never pressured a girl into anything and I’m quite proud of that.  In fact, I’ve at least twice had to turn a girl down after she got drunk and seemed to want to go uhhhh all the way that night.  In both cases, I didn’t want to ruin a potential relationship by having a one night stand with a girl who seemed really great.

I also keep my apartment stocked, just in case.  Plenty of extra toilet paper, extra new toothbrushes and mouthwash, plenty of clean towels, a collection of hotel soaps and shampoos, tissues, etc.  This isn’t really in preparation for the one night stand, rather it’s in preparation for date number x where a girl does decide to spend the night.  I think it’s a nice courtesy to have enough hygienic products so if they do spend the night, they at least feel comfortable.  Honestly, I think a lot of these things have been more helpful with friends spending the night on my couch considering I’ve only had a grand total of four girls who weren’t old friends ever spend the night at my place.

Is this a common practice?  My bet is that a lot of guys do something similar.  But, I do have female friends who have horror stories of waking up at some guy’s place where he doesn’t even have a clean toilet seat.

A bonus I’ve been considering lately is keeping around more cooking supplies — I think it could be fun to make breakfast with a girl the next morning.  Not something I’ve ever tried early on in a relationship, but it seems like a good way to transition from the early morning pillow talk.