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The first decade of experience that I have with the internet was more “stranger danger” than anything else. We’ve all seen enough episodes of To Catch A Predator to know that there is some fucked up shit out there. But it’s 2016, and most of us have met a Tinder or Bumble date by now and not been murdered. Dating apps have normalized the thought of meeting people from online, especially those who have similar interests and senses of humor. As I planned to meet fellow PGPers for the first time, I wondered if we would instantly connect due to said mutual personality traits or if it would just be weird. Either way, I was down for trying.
Being a girl, Type A and a planner by nature, I used the PGP Reddit to put together a gathering. Armed with two phone numbers and iMessage, I suggested happy hour last night. One guy from our city totally ghosted us. The guy who showed up said it was probably because I was too aggressive in trying to plan things. Are guys really that scared of the world? I’m just trying to make friends, bro.
So now it was down to two of us. I picked our meeting place for the night. I was in the mood for a good cocktail, and I have a far and away favorite watering hole in that regard. He’d never been to said fancy, awesome bar, and I flat out admitted that it’s my “I’m going to show off how cool I am” place. I gave him recommendations based on the limited knowledge that I had of his alcohol preferences, and we were off.
Three drinks later, he said, “You know this is a date, right?” I countered that I’m too old to have dates that aren’t clearly defined as dates before they begin. I should have also added, “Would you have shown up 20 minutes late if this was a real date?” but I sadly wasn’t as quick on my feet as I should have been (see: multiple drinks).
I don’t know what he was expecting out of our meeting, but I have to say that I’ve never actually had a horror story of a job interview, first date or other normal social interaction. I’m not awkward and am a decently good judge of character. On the dating front, I’m a great conversationalist, a slutty drunk and have a tendency to pick up the bar tab while you’re in the bathroom. Even if I know it’s not going anywhere, I like to think it’s not a true waste of a night for any guy.
We had a great time. I held my booze better than him (he’ll disagree but he’s wrong). I wowed him with my ability to be both a relatively attractive female and a normal person (guys, your bar is so, so low). I argued with him about sports (he’s probably right that the shortstop is the best player on the field, but I’ll be damned if I’m going to give up a fight that easily). And I turned him on (his words) by knowing that Charlie Strong was headed to USF and that Willie Taggart left him a solid program where he could be successful right away.
At one point, he disappeared to go to the restroom and was gone for a solid 15-20 minutes. When he got back, he offered no explanation. Until the waitress came over and asked about the Texas whiskey the bartender had given him. Yep, I got stood up so he could drink in the back with the bartender. And I was surprisingly okay with that.
In the end, I let him walk me home, and we did some slight kissing at my front gate (side note: I have got to stop making out with people in front of my house. My neighbors are going to start slipping “You Need Jesus” fliers in my mailbox.). We will hang out again, but he’s teetering on the friend zone. The friend zoning wouldn’t be his fault at all. I’ve got a messy dating situation with a guy who just got out of a relationship. I’m also looking down the barrel of potentially switching roles at my company within the next three months, which would move me 900 miles away from where I live now.
If I need any kind of thesis other than just letting you know how my night went, it would be this. Next time you write an innocent enough “sup?” down there in the comments section, you may not be too far off from a fun night out with a new friend. And while my one example isn’t enough to guarantee you a great night, I don’t think the people here are all bad. So go ahead and give it a shot. .