Last week, I was tricked back into online dating.
Okay fine. No one promised me candy if I climbed into their van, but someone from Match.com texted me out of the blue.
“Hey! Would you be up for a cup of coffee sometime? I know you said you’re in a relationship but nothing wrong with friends. This is George, the goofy guy from [nearby town].”
George and I had made it to the texting stage back in early April, when I was in the middle of my ’10 first dates in 10 weeks’ phase. We were all set to meet for First Date Coffee when I decided to cancel to pursue a budding romance with someone else. George was very understanding.
His text, now three months later, threw me for a loop. My budding romance had turned out to be anything but, and I’d since sworn off dating with the type of fervor usually reserved for monks and fruitarians.
I stalled for two days.
“Hi George!” I eventually texted back. “Good to hear from you! That sounds fun – although as friends, we can meet for a drink instead, because who cares about first impressions?!”
We quickly settled on meeting date and location. He suggested the very place I was going to recommend, which seemed to bode well. But did he really think I’d meet him if I was actually in a relationship?
“No f^&*# way,” said my girlfriends. It was a hot topic over happy hour that Friday. “He saw you were back on Match.”
It was true; after a 10+ year failed marriage, two eHarmony heartbreaks and several Match.com face palms (about which I hope to eventually tastefully blog), I had recently logged back onto Match, browsing the bottomless pool of misguided selfies. Each time I thought about messaging someone, I came to my senses.
Leading up to the non-date date, my anxiety morphed into full-on dread. I reread our text exchanges from early April. They were pretty funny. Was I going to have to start shaving my legs again?
On the big day, George and I arrived at exactly the same time. He was tall, nice smile, put together, friendly enough. Definitely nervous and trying to hide it. I was always nervous, too, but if there was one thing I’d learned over the past year: I rocked at first dates. The formula was simple, and had nothing to do with any merit or attractiveness on my part:
“Are you a drinker?” George asked as we walked toward the bar. I shot him a look and he laughed.
He never asked if I was, in fact, seeing anyone, and throughout the night, kept leaning his arms across the table. At one point I had to put my hands in my lap to avoid contact. Which meant I couldn’t reach my wine. Bad move, George.
In response to several of my comments about food, music and movies he replied, “You’re earning points with me.”
Comments like that used to make me blush and giggle; now I just wanted to go home and watch Little People, Big World.
I thought the restaurant closed at 10pm and I could make a smooth escape after two hours, but we wound up talking until nearly midnight.
I feared an awkward hug goodbye in the now-deserted parking lot, so I waved, shouted something about owing him a few book titles and bolted. He looked so taken aback that I wondered if I’d ever hear from him again.
He texted twenty minutes later.
He said he was glad we’d met, and sent a few Instagram clips of him singing. We’d talked about his musical pursuits, but I was surprised to receive four 15-second videos.
All you could see in the videos was his phone, while he earnestly sang over the likes of Seal and Extreme.
After a few moments’ debate, I replied, “NICE!! The last one was my favorite.” Technically, it was true.
The next morning, he texted, “I wanted to ask you, are you booked up over the long weekend? I’m thinking that I could be coaxed to sing you a ditty for a payment in fine wine.”
“Usually I pay based on performance,” I cheekily replied, agreeing to meet for a second date on Sunday, my next available evening.
I ignored his LinkedIn request.
On Wednesday (two days after our initial meeting), he texted, “For today’s entertainment, here’s a humor article I wrote in 2009 for [website name].”
He had never mentioned an interest in writing, but I dutifully clicked on the link de jour.
“The website was blocked by my work filter!” I replied, secretly relieved.
“Hilarious,” he said, and then copied and pasted the entire article into a text message.
I was running late for a meeting, so put my phone away, planning to read it that afternoon. Which I did. And. Well. Okay. So.
Here’s the thing.
Well it isn’t that…
You see what I’m trying to say is…
It doesn’t even matter how good or bad the article was. Right? Do people do that? Should I pass out blog business cards on first (non-date) dates?
And here’s where I need your help. How would you have responded? I’m not sure I made the right decision.
68 thoughts on “My “Eep” Dating Moment: What Would You Have Done?”
Years (and years) ago, I did the dating service thing. (No online back then, just dating services. I met an awful lot of frogs, but once in a while I would meet someone nice who was also hoping to meet someone nice. It was worth it. Hang in there.
Oh Nancy. At this point I think I’ll cut my loses and take some well-prepared frogs and a basket of bread over anything resembling a date with a warm-blooded mammal.
It sounds like he’s just trying TOO hard. I’d give him one more chance, then politely fade off.
And I think that’s just it – I’m not in a receptive, warm & fuzzy place, and it seems unfair to saddle someone with my (hopefully short-lived!) dating pessimism while they’re clearly still so optimistic!! (Am I just making excuses??)
Forget “the right” thing, how do you feel about it? And to answer your question, I don’t give my blog information out to first dates, they have to earn the right to know that intel on me 😉 He is trying hard and that can be a turn off, but he’s also not reading your queues, which is one of my turn offs. I like a man who can take my signals and send them back in tandem. It may not perfect, but it feels right. Hang in there! I’m working on another Dating after Divorce piece, The Unfiltered Truth Part 2.. dun dun dunnnnnn
Ooh, I can’t wait to read it, Kristy! If I miss the alert, please let me know once you publish!!
Some of the Match dates have mentioned finding my blog, which is SUCH a mind-trip, but I NEVER bring it up unless they ask first. I’m so curious about how other bloggers handle that kind of thing (part of my self-indulgence in writing this post!)!
I know a guy who found it… and still reads it with enjoyment! Secretly hoping my name isn’t mentioned!
Assuming you don’t want to see him again, I would edit his article and send it back to him with an “I’m sorry it took me so long to finish editing this” note. He won’t have a clue what to say, and likely, won’t communicate again.
On the other hand, since we’re all writers, and we all want folks to read our stuff (and so few people actually do) maybe that was all it was, and you’re safe.
HA. Oh. If only I’d talked to you sooner, Elyse!!!
Yes. I am the perfect source for how to rain on somebody’s parade! Didn’t what I suggested happen to one of the Brady girls?
Sounds like he just wants you to like him. I think you should give him a chance.
Thanks, Chris! It was a good date (or non-date!), I just don’t think I should be dating until the phrase “you’re earning points” starts to make me giddy again 😉
I am so out of the dating loop, still being married and such, but if you felt comfortable with him, give it a go, take your time and really get to know him. Good luck with it all!
Thank you! 🙂 I promise my next post will have nothing to do with dating and everything to do with severed limbs. Oops. Spoiler alert!!!
Firstly, I sent the link for this blog to my cousin who is posting her Tinder convos online.
Secondly, without knowing WHAT his blog said – I cannot make an educated judgement of “what to do next”.
So…. finally: Good Luck!
Oh boy. I can only imagine what those [Tinder conversations] look like!! I’m not sure I’d ever be brave enough for Tinder. Especially after what I’ve seen on the likes of the ‘tame-by-comparison’ eHarmony and Match!!
Thank you so much! 🙂
Anyone sending out stuff from 2009 should know better. If you haven’t beaten yourself with a better article let’s say yesterday then don’t send out what has to be the best thing you’ve ever written and expect people to be impressed. I liked the idea of editing it and sending it back.
Right?! Thank you for picking up on that 🙂
That’s a long ass text message! But for some people, texting is like their sole form of communication. Be happy neither of you use morse code! What if he beeped the whole article to you?
I think if you want to go on another date, do it. And if you’re not feeling like it, don’t.
Ha! Oh Jess, thank you for ‘getting it’!! (Second date did not happen. I’m just not ready to dive back in!)
What if, let’s just say for arguments sake, he really just wants to be your friend? And as such he’s already Googled you (oh stop as if you haven’t done the same) and knows you’re a big time blogger (or something) and really just wants your opinion….as a friend. I mean there’s still the possibility he doesn’t want in your pants right? Ooh and how much do you love those Match.com tv commercials and wouldn’t you love for that interviewer guy to happen randomly upon you on the street and ask if you’ve tried Match.com yet? 🙂 You could practice your response and try it out on George. Win. Win.
Ha! I like the way you think, Dee. Those Match commercials depress the ever-loving baby chipmunks out of me. I feel like I’m drowning in a pool of desperation and Axe body spray!!!! (Both my own.)
It’s just… oh, George… Dating is hard enough without having to read someone’s article via text. But maybe the article was endearing? (She asked hopefully.)
Oh, Jackie. Well… your unwavering optimism is endearing. *hopeful smile*
This was an entertaining read, mostly because I could relate as I have just started on the online dating scene, and given up really quickly! It does make good dinner conversation on girls night though.
As for the long text, it really depends on what the article said, and is he that comfortable with you, that he gives this to you after a first date? It’s an extreme of both sides, good and bad, you have to deicide, maybe a second date?
I feel like I should send my condolences to anyone who can relate to my dating tales! Even the ‘good’ ones are, well, confusing? You just reallllly come to appreciate how hard it is to truly click with someone (and in that spirit, your love of your girlfriends increases exponentially – am I right?!).
You said it perfectly – an extreme of both sides!
You are so right! I look forward to dinner with the girls, to offload all the good and bad dates.
I find that the bad ones don’t seem to leave me alone, and the ones who have actually perked my interest are “Commitment phobs” or as you say, so confusing, I find them hard to read, this keeps me interested for a bit, but it gets boring after a while!
I have given up on online dating in general, if I log in, it’s purely for entertainment purposes.
Oh great, I read your blog just after adding pictures (one selfie) to my Match profile and sending it out in a bottle. I-feel-so-confident-now. Of course, my status is “currently separated”, so my new profile will be promptly ignored by anything but hookers…..
Ha! You say that like it’s a bad thing…
HA!!! — drinks are on me next time you are in Chicagoland. No texts allowed.
Am I reading this wrong or is it possible you’re just not really into this guy? Based on the reactions you had (rather be watching TV, dreading the awkward hug, not exticed by his “humor article”), I’d say he’s just not doing it for you. But, what do I know?
At the risk of being a poo-pooer, I’d say ” So long, bud!” and just let it go by the wayside or put his name into your “friend” column. If you’re not feeling him and end up passing over someone else who does it for you, ya might miss out on someone who’s knows make you blush all over! That’s just me, though 🙂
You are very insightful and have predicted the outcome of this tale!! Your prize? You get to be my new therapist! Congratulations!! 😉
Yesssssss! I have always wanted a willing person (*ahem* victim) to practice my brainwashing and head-shrinking skills on… thanks for volunteering!
Interesting! Well if I only knew how much of a lost soul, loser, and pathetic try hard I was being to you I definitely would have sent you at least a properly formatted text.
Insane how taking a look back in the past at what another person thought of you as a person to be used as fodder makes for an interesting out of body experience I tell ya.
In any case, thanks for letting me know how I awful I was anonymously through your blog post instead of telling me straightforward 🤣
Hi “George.” (Not to be confused with anyone by that actual name. We change names here on Go Jules Go!) Gosh, I imagine it must have been a jolt to the system to read this! I know that’s how I’d feel if I stumbled on a blog post written seven years ago about a single date someone went on with me… I apologize if it landed poorly; it’s definitely tricky to be a nonfiction writer and share authentically without some risk. All my best to you!
It’s possible that single guys are falling for you here on WordPress, then going onto Match or whichever dating site to “accidentally” find you there. My suggestion is to lose the eye glass mustache in your dating profile so they won’t recognize you.
Wise man here.
I speak from experience. I…umm…I know a guy who reads blogs and ends up crazy about the authors. I…umm…he has a real problem.
Ha! I just went into a trance, imagining that very scenario, which sounds wonderfully ego-boosting in theory, but, how could I be certain they ever truly loved the real, non-mustachioed me?!?
Good point, they may just love you for your witty blog posts.
Obviously trying too hard. I’m cringing to admit that I’ve casually – oh, so casually – tried to work a writing/blogging reference into conversations with real-life people before. Usually they interrupt to continue with the fascinating tale of their bunion surgery before I can get more than a few words in, so that saves me from making a total, self-absorbed ass of myself.
Bottom line: do you like him enough to go for a second?
I think you get a pass (or seven) when it comes to bringing up the blog on non-first-dates. Actually, I don’t know what I would do if a first date told me THEY had a blog. Of course, content of said blog would play a big part in my reaction…
(Ooh. Good question: How would you describe your blog on a first date?)
Dunno. I’ve been married for so long, to me a date is one of those sticky fruit-like things that I never really liked, even though they’re Mediterranean so good for you, right?
Yikes. I think you know already that your heart’s probably not feeling it. But then what do I know? It’s not like I would have any clue what’s appropriate in the dating world these days. My gut feeling is you’ll find The One the second you stop looking.
But DPeeee, I thought that’s what I WAS doing!
Hey there chica, hope all is well, I miss ya!
Please keep in mind that I have less than ZERO experience with this online dating scene, okay. My assessment: he strikes me as a stalker. He’s very needy and wants you to like everything he has ever done WAY TOO much. If you are feeling really alone, call me. Really.
Well, I have already said in the past that I would go out with you in a split second. I am working on getting back into dating.
Take your time. Do it your way. There, truly, are worse things than being single – being divorced is no picnic; being divorced twice really isn’t.
You are a good person. If you truly want to be married again, the right guy will come along.
Sounds trite, but I am finding truth in triteness anymore.
i loved reading this post! your so funny,
I feel ya, Jules. I’ve been on enough online first dates to know when a guy is going to get a second date. You can feel a connection and walk away from the date with giddiness and… what’s that word? Hope. It sounds like he’s just not doing it for you. If you were really into him, the videos and article text messages would have been endearing rather than “eh.” Be honest (but kind) and tell him that you’re just not feeling it, but have enjoyed getting to know him. And then pour yourself a big ol’ drink because you’ve earned it!
Jessica, couldn’t have said it better!
I’ve missed your posts, lovely lady.
It seems to me, from tons of experience prior to my current 7 year long relationship, that if you if feel ‘heebie geebie’ ish in any way or form from a first (or second date) then it’s time to say adios. You’re worth more than settling. 😀
This is awesome. It might be a little mean but I am so glad that I am not the only one out there with the online dating issues.
I finally started dating someone but wowziers some of those online dates will haunt me forever.
This was a rib tickling post! I really enjoyed your blog. I have only ever done Plenty of fish and my gosh, most of them looked like fish! Online dating sites are so….extra, how many times have you done a selfie only to delete it to take another one of your “best side”. I have done selfies, but its only after the 50th time, I would send it to my partner. Good luck! looking forward to hearing how it goes
totally subscribed to you… just got out of a bad relationship, had a few lame encounters with some first dates in the past… and calling it quits with dating… you made me giggle!!! thanks… 🙂 LOL
HUGS! I have been out of the loop for ages so I am sorry to hear about all this chaos in your life currently. You haven’t blogged recently so I am really hoping you did not meet for a second time and he did throw you into the back of a van that stated free candy and now you are hog tied somewhere in a creepy basement.
At least you get a good story out of it?
bahaha…pineapple of someone’s eye
I’d suggest that anything that feels like this much of a compromise (“I didn’t really want to be online dating,” plus “his approach was a little sketchy,” plus “was hoping for an earlier get-away while on the date” plus “20-minutes post-date text [nee-dy!]” and follow up requests for validation) is you trying to prove you’re a good sport. Which is nice, but it’s you dating for us. Or for George. I think you should date people who make you excited, not people like this. Generally speaking, I’ve found you can’t good-deed your way into time with Prince Charming.
Sounds super keen, I still want to know what was in the article, it can’t have been that horrendous, otherwise, definitely wouldn’t considering anything more.
you are brilliant and hilarious and your blog is the best.
People still use match.com? I don’t understand why when you can go to okcupid.com or POF and get the same thing for free.
Personally, I think you’ve done great, a date is a date after all. Much more than I have ever had – only some failed one night stands *sigh*