Where would you like me to begin? The date where I slapped a man square across the face? Or the one where he compared my belief system to the tacit approval of the Germans to Hitler’s regime?
One week. Two dates. Two very different dates.
One was very physical and not just because of the slapping incident (more of that, anon). The other was very emotional. Both made me wonder what sort of pheromones I am putting out there at the moment. (Both men I met on Tinder, by the way.)
The men in question were also very different. The first was loud, boisterous, smooth, “tall and outrageous”, as he described himself. A salesman. We’d exchanged a couple of emails, organised to meet up and that was that. I barely knew anything about him aside from his name.
The second, however, was slightly unsure of himself, he was short and we spoke on the phone for three nights’ straight for more than an hour at a time. I knew everything about this bloke. What he looked for in a woman (“someone smarter than me”), his relationship with his mother, intricate details of all his tattoos.
On the date with gentleman #1, we got drunk. It was very tactile. There was pashing. Hell, there was neck pashing (which is terribly intimate and really shouldn’t be done anywhere in public). He’d lost his wallet the night before so I bought most of the drinks. At one point I slapped him. I don’t know why. He didn’t know why.“Is this a thing with you?” he justifiably asked. “Because if it is, I’m not cool with it.” Fair. Call. I didn’t know what came over me. I think what happened was that he called me by a nickname I despise and rather than give him a gentle tap across the cheek as intended, I mistimed it in my drunken state and it ended up being a slap. We managed to move past it but still… cringe
Gentleman #2 picked me up for lunch. We ate a lovely meal and had just the two beers and he refused to let me pay for anything. There was no slapping per se although the verbal smack down I got from him for a) believing that climate change is influenced by man and b) having some sort of faith in a life after this was kind of like a physical slap. He was a right wing conservative, which is pretty much the opposite end of the spectrum to my left wing champagne-sipping socialist ideals.I was willing to forgive his pedestrian arguments on climate change and his far-out economic views on the dwindling prosperity of the Western Australian economy. But the comment about Nazi Germany and the inability to have a rational conversation about spirituality was unimpressive.
Post date #1, I thought he was too wild for me (and I’m aware of the deep irony of that statement given I was the one who slapped him). He also proved to be a touch petulant the following week when I had to cancel our second date because I was too hungover (I’m aware this wasn’t my coolest moment). He was a livewire but not in the sparky, fun way. Kind of in the ‘I could get electrocuted any minute and not in a good way’ way.
Post date #2, I felt battered having had my beliefs questioned with a level of ferocity I’d never been subjected to. Weirdly, you may think, I was willing to give him another go. Maybe he was nervous; maybe he was trying to impress me (I had told him over the phone that I enjoyed a good argument). Maybe he just had a brain explosion. That has happened to me in the past and I didn’t get another look-in so in the spirit of second chances, I thought I would give him the opportunity to redeem himself. He got in first with a pre-emptive dumping. “Thank you for your grace and patience,” he wrote in a text. “I wish you all the best and am sure you’ll find a better date and match than me.”
“Do you want to try again,” I replied. “So long as we don’t talk about climate change. Or religion. [Smiley face.]”
“No thanks. All the best.”
I will never understand men.
During my reflection upon these two very different dates, I’ve come up with a couple of additions for my list of Haves.
Must Have… a lively, not bonkers, nature
Must Not Have… Capital L Liberal values
Must Have… the ability to have a good discussion without becoming offensive
Must Not Have… the kind of personality that makes me want to slap him
Must Have… understanding in spades, limited petulance
Too much to ask?
Photo credit: ionics