Met Donte for a drink at a cheesy chain restaurant bar. I told him I would be the one with the peg leg and eyepatch; he countered he’d be in a straw hat and spandex. He looked like his pictures, which is to say big (6’2″, 250), attractive, and well-dressed. He was relatively funny, used words like ‘litmus’, but admitted he didn’t like to read. He said I smelled good, thanked me for meeting him. He drank two Bud Lights; I sipped one sickly sweet cocktail.
It was mostly easy. We talked about his possible move to Durham, his preference for the NBA of fifteen years ago, the difficulties of online dating, how sometimes he’s had sex on the first date and had a relationship out of it, his holiday plans. After an hour and a quarter, he said he was “throwing out bait” and wasn’t sure if it was being “nibbled at”. I said, “Well, if you’re trolling for a second date, then maybe. If you’re asking whether I’m going home with you tonight, the answer is no.” He didn’t tell me which bait it was but a while later asked if he could cook me dinner. I said it would have to be after the holiday. We settled on the 27th.
As the date wound down shortly thereafter, I put on my coat and tried to listen to my instincts, the ones I’ve ignored before, to my detriment. And I heard a quack. I definitely didn’t want to go to his place on the second date.
He and I had spoken during the evening about the importance of, whatever you do/think/feel, just owning your shit, so as we walked to my car, I said, “Hey, listen. Can I get back to you about that second date?”
He stopped walking. I stopped walking. He didn’t say anything.
I improvised, “It’s just I have another date tomorrow night, and I’m not good at juggling more than one guy.” (Both are true.)
He looked at me stone-faced.
He said, “It would’ve been better if you hadn’t told me that.”
My face flushed. I started to sweat under my coat. “Oh, sorry—I just—you know, I just wanted to be upfront.”
“Are you upset? Things just got weird,” I said.
He looked so cold. “It just would’ve been better if you hadn’t told me that,” he replied.
At the end of most first dates, I generally give the guy a hug, whether we’ve hit it off or not. It closes things, you know?, and precludes the expectation/possibility of a kiss. But I was so weirded out by his demeanor, I said, “Well, on that awkward note, have a good night,” sped home, and blocked his ass on OKCupid.