We exchanged messages for a month, talked on the phone once, and pretty much followed the clique protocols that one assumes with online dating. Today was the day. Expectations were ruled out because I’ve been here before. You know, the same monotonous conversations about career, past dating history, horoscopes, hobbies, etc. Everyone talks about the proverbial spark of when you meet someone. I call it bullshit because science will tell you that chemicals can do some amazing things. Sometimes it’s fucking great and most of the time, not so much. Although I may seem down, it was quite the contrary as a remnant of hope flickered dimly somewhere within.
She was 20 minutes away and I had just gotten out of the shower. I cleaned my apartment the day prior because I believe in good hygiene and you never know, she might want coffee afterward, and who doesn’t love a little late-night coffee.
I didn’t have a knack for impeccable style but wasn’t completely tacky either. A burgundy checkered shirt, freshly ironed khakis, and some Chuck Taylors were the ensemble for the evening. I reeked SF Techie. My threads were versatile enough for the beach, casual enough for dinner, and cozy enough for late-night coffee. I packed a bag with white wine, an umbrella — because it was March in the city — and a blanket. I had a good feeling about her but knew not to judge my inner voice. Whether it was positive or negative, I made it a virtue to let the present moment be and let things happen organically.
I went outside and waited for a few minutes. She texted me and was still 10 minutes away. I had to go to the bathroom. It was my third time. Might have been nerves. The optimist in me was feeling good, as I do about most first dates, but I needed to check this part of me, and remain present, go with the flow, and leave room for the story to be told instead of telling it.
I went back downstairs and she was here.
“‘Hey, handsome.’” Those were her first words. She said it with such conviction that it made me feel almost handsome. It also made my brown ass blush. I was nervous but told that inner voice to chill the fuck out.
She was drop-dead gorgeous. She was the type of woman to make you fall in love and also take your soul in the same breath. She was…