My first date in a year and a half, and it was terrible. There's no rulebook for dating, but there are certainly well-documented do’s and don’t when it comes to the delicate art of wooing the opposite sex. My date literally broke them all.
No. I’m not being overly-dramatic, or even my usual nitpicky, commitment-phobic self. I am completely justified in telling you, tis was a truly horrific date. It didn’t start out that way, though.
We met in random fashion, as most potential partners do. Take Lizzy and Darcy, thrown together in Meryton. Had it not been for Bingley taking Netherfield, Darcy may never have ventured near Hertfordshire, and then we would have been deprived one of the greatest love stories to ever grace the inside pages of a novel. (Yes, I know he’s fictional. But I have a problem. So just let me pretend he’s real for a second.) Maybe he would’ve actually ended up with Miss Bingley–the horror.
Anyways, I was shopping for a pair of new Nikes for my upcoming Spanish adventure. Low and behold, the shoe salesman is cute–like actually cute. By eavesdropping, I quickly learned that he’s adopting a yellow lab this fall and that he’s on a PhD track for exercise science. (I fear I’m developing a PhD-type. Is that a thing? First Corey, and now Kyle!)
Before I left the store, Kyle slips me his business card. (Why he even has business cards when he’s working as a shoe retailer is confusing to me, but I digress. A lot.) I took this as a sign that he wanted me to add him on Facebook. That’s such a big conclusion to draw from someone giving you their business card. I’m a creep. It’s fine. I’m working on it.
After I initiated a friend request, he immediately messaged me, requesting a coffee date. I readily assented.
Before I continue, I want to say that I value honesty. Generally, I don’t expect total honesty from guys–at least, not in the beginning. We all embellish a little bit on our profiles. After all, what are Instagram filters for if not to make us look slightly more attractive than we already are? But this guy, Kyle, doesn’t have a dishonest bone in his body. At first, it was a welcome change from Corey (read “Constant Craving” if you don’t know who that is) who I had to hound to finally get an honest answer about the intention behind our “friendship”. (There’s that word again. Ugh.)
And you know what, I wish Kyle had been a lot less honest.
Ironically, honesty is one of Mr. Darcy’s best qualities. He’s not one of those guys that beats around the bush until you get the picture: he’s just not that into you. (Cough, Corey. Who said that??) I think Bingley is more the type of a guy that will unintentionally lead you on. But the thing is, Bingley is non-confrontational. (Clearly, look how he ended things with Jane. He wrote a letter.) His intention is not malicious in any way, but it could be misconstrued pretty easily. At times, he’s too nice for his own good.
Darcy on the other hand is refreshingly…frank. He’s a man that sticks to his opinions, a man who is unafraid to share those opinions and will openly defend those opinions if need be. I like someone with a little spirit, a little…tete-a-tete is just what I want/need/dream of in a relationship. A man like Darcy pushes you to really consider your viewpoints, as well as giving you an opportunity to have them challenged (because, let’s be honest. He seems to like to disagree with people). He’s the sort of man that won’t ever let you get complacent with your life–that’s something I firmly believe about Darcy. He would make life incredibly interesting and worth living.
But back to real life, though it’s not nearly as fun to talk about (partly because this date ended so badly, but we haven’t gotten there yet).
On the very first date, he broke every possible dating rule you can think of. Our conversation was painfully honest. He was clingy; he was emotional; he talked about our future together. Dude. It’s been a couple of hours. You don’t even know me. Calm down.
I’m sure you’re wondering, Halle, what could he have possibly said that was so terrible on the first date? Let me clarify…in detail.
Do you have a personal relationship with God?
This is a valid question. His faith is super important to him. With his parents recent divorce and his recent struggles with mental illness, his faith has helped him turn away from a really dark ledge. I’ve never been one to date particularly religious guys, because I would identify myself as more of a “casual Catholic”. (I attend church for major holidays and pray on my own time.) As it turns out, my Catholicism was sort of a problem. He even invited me to his church, to which I was thinking, I neglect my own mass, I’m not about to go to yours instead.
You're so smart and pretty, why are you still single?
Ask the rest of your sex. Never ask a girl why she’s single; just don’t. Yes, singleness is typically a matter of choice (and maybe I’m taking it too personally), but that question makes it seem as if there’s something wrong with you–a flaw he just hasn’t unearthed out yet, but one the presumably sent other men fleeing. I simply replied, “I haven’t found many guys worth dating.” That’s the truth. I’ve a handful of men in my acquaintance who I would consider dating. As of right now, the list is one, and he already has a girlfriend.
So you're thinking about living in Minneapolis?
Nope. Not thinking, planning. The funny thing about Kyle is that we were literally the same person, insofar as we plan our lives to a T, like I set aside an hour and a half for a coffee date and if it goes over, then I’m like more upset about it than is acceptable. (I may have control issues, but that’s for a different day). We both established we wanted to live in different cities, him in Lincoln, Nebraska, and me in Minneapolis, Minnesota. By the end of the date, his future plans had switched from “Lincoln would be the perfect place for me because it’s close to the country but also the city” to “I could move to Minnesota…”
How many kids do you want?
I looked at him uncertainly and replied, “Two?” He smiled and said, “I could do two.”
(At this point, i escaped to the bathroom and silently screamed to myself in the mirror. Ohmygooooooodddddd!)
Would you be interested in a long-distance relationship?
I carefully explained that I’m going to be in Spain for the next four months and how I don’t want to spend the entire time Skyping someone back in America who I’ve only known for like a month and a half. If I’m going to be spending time Facetiming and what not, it’s going to be with my immediate family and close friends.
Plus, Spanish boys. That’s reason enough to stay single, right?
Apparently, he wasn’t talking about dating while I’m in Spain, just once I get back to America (but I’ll still be in Minnesota?). He proceeded to inform me that he’d already mentally planned out how our relationship could turn out (if we continued to see each other). I guess I’m moving back to Nebraska while he finishes his PhD. And only after he finishes, do I get to move back to Minnesota. (I thought to myself, Do I even get a say in this?) When I asked if that meant I’d be putting my own career on hold, he replied, “Well didn’t you say you can write from anywhere?” Fuck. “Yes. I did…”
He had an answer for everything.
I sincerely hope you guys don’t think I’m some terrible person after reading this. He came on so strong that it scared the crap out of me. Yes, I want a guy to like me. And yes. I frequently complain about being the only single girl out of my friends. But I’m not going to settle for just any guy who happens to like me. (And if he does like me, it should be at an appropriate level. I felt like I’d been proposed to on the first date.)
So, I did what any rational girl would do. I texted him that we should just be friends. (A little TBT to the friendzone–it’d been a while! You all thought I’d left that behind. LOL.). I was actually able to use Corey’s friendzoning line: “I think we have different expectations of this friendship.” (So shoutout to Corey, I guess? Jk.) You know what? He was such a good sport about it. He acknowledged that he comes on strong and that it’s something he needs to work on. His last message was #friendzoned which hurt my heart a little bit. But when the time is right, he’ll meet some girl who will be just what he needs; I just don’t happen to be that girl.
Who knows, maybe I’ll stumble across my Darcy while I study abroad for four months. Right now, I’m back off dating (and dairy). My friend actually gave the rest of my summer a catchphrase: “Single for Spain.”