Following the Lunch Date From Hell, I came home and crawled back into bed and hid under my covers. I wondered what signs had I missed that good, intelligent conversations could turn into such a disasterous lunch conversation. I finally drug myself back out of bed and made myself go out with friends on an attempt to redeem my weekend.
We were having a great time, just hanging out at the pub, laughing and having good conversation. A guy I had sort of met once before, who just moved back to the area a couple of months ago sat next to me. He was very nice and we talked for most of the evening. We share interests in everything from sports to gardening. He talked about the house he had just bought and the projects he had on his to-do list. I talked about my house and the things I would do if I were made of money.
At some point, he mentioned his move and I inquired where he had moved from. He off-handedly mentioned Pennsylvania with the same sweeping tone that I've given knowing if you're from here, you don't know much of anything about out there. I, of course, asked a follow-up question, "Where in PA?" He looked at me, again with that tone that I've often given that says, "If I don't say Pittsburgh or Philly, you have no idea, so what difference does it matter?" But, sweetly enough, he replied, "From north of Philadelphia." Really? Of course, being from there, I have to again, ask a follow-up question, much to his chagrin. "Where north of Philly exactly?" This time he turns to me, looks at me squarely and says with emphasis meant to point out the absurdity of him getting more specific and says, "Quakertown."
I say, "I'm from there, too."
He doesn't believe me.
I tell him the zip code, the highways and roughly where my condo was in relation to the WalMart. I mention restaurants and shops and awesome places to hang out and he starts laughing straight from his gut with this incredulous laugh. Neither of us can believe it.
Turns out he moved there the year I moved to MI. And he hung out at many of the same places I did. And he lived just down the road from where I did. And so we talk and laugh some more about the weird coincidence.
Eventually we get talking about how much dating sucks and I share my afternoon's story with him. We talk about how difficult it is to meet people and how awkward it is to do it at the grocery store or Lowe's although we both admit we've been tempted to do it at both of those locations. By the time the evening is winding down for me, I have mentioned that I think one of the best places to go on a first date is a minor league baseball game. To which he smiles at me and says, "So I have to wait until summer?"
And I think for a moment that he's actually hinting at a date. And after the day I've had, I decide to just go for it and I jot my number down on a piece of the receipt and slide it over to him.
To which he makes this dreadful face and very reluctantly writes his name and number on a piece of the receipt, tears it off and hands it back.
And I feel so stupid.
I leave kicking myself six ways from Sunday for taking the wrong message from his question. I sit in the parking lot waiting for my car to warm a little when I see him leave. I want to say something to save my dignity, but I don't know what. He gets into his Jeep Wrangler (sigh) and drives off.
I get home and I finally decide I have to text him. I will surely run into him again at the pub and I don't want to put off an awkward moment. Let's bite the bullet and get it overwith.
"I realize from the look on your face that my number wasn't what you were after. I will feel no offense if you crumple it up and throw it away. :) "
His response? "No, not at all. I was kicking myself because I was just about to ask you for it when you handed it to me."
"I'm sorry, I didn't mean to steal your thunder."
"It's okay. Would you maybe like to go out sometime?"
YES YES YES YES YES!!
"I think that would be great! Are you planning on watching the SuperBowl up at the pub at all?"
"If you're going to be there, I will definitely be there, too."
I don't know that it's anything and it can just as easily be nothing, but it sure salvaged an otherwise wretched dating week.