This past Friday night is the first time in a long time I had multiple events on one night. My first instinct at the end of a work week is to throw on sweats and curl up on the couch with Netflix, especially when temps dip into the single digits. However, on this Friday night I had a birthday happy hour at one bar, dinner with a friend at another, and then it was to a third bar to hang out with Eggs (see previous post). The first happy hour was ok but I didn’t know most of the people there. I did recognize an old acquaintance who now has maybe the fullest handlebar mustache I’ve ever seen. He greeted me with a story about the exterior wall of his house collapsing and ended with being stuck with a high bill in a brothel in Rome. At that point, I decided to leave. As interesting as it was, I was not in the mood to entertain crazy that evening. Little did I know . . .
The next stop was dinner with a friend. Dinner was great- fire-roasted pizza and beers. Honestly, I think this should be the mainstay meal for every Friday night but maybe that’s just me. The pizza place was small so you had to ask for a key to use the bathroom. When I went to hand the key back to the cashier he said, “Oh we want patrons to leave the key between the door and the door frame so the bathroom can air out.” Wait, what?! He starts cracking up and the cook behind him says, “Just ignore him. He’s crackin’ a joke. That’s how he flirts.” FYI guys, insinuating that I just smelled up the public restroom at your pizza joint is neither a turn-on or flattering. Good luck with getting girls. On that note, it was time to leave.
I’m finally at Eggs’ bar but it is a MADHOUSE. They were having a burlesque show, which sounded like a lot of fun, but that’s probably why the bar was overflowing with people. I don’t see Eggs at this point (he must be at the downstairs bar) but they’re not letting anyone down there due to capacity issues so we head to another bar for a drink and wait for the air to clear. When we finally make it back to Eggs’ bar, it’s still crowded but we find a seat. At that point, I go up to get drinks and who’s there but Eggs in the flesh (yay!). He gives me a look like, ‘this is crazy but I’m glad to see your face’ and tells me he’ll bring me the drinks. I point him out to my friend and she says, “That’s Eggs?! I noticed him the first time we came in- he’s hot!” Yeeeeah he is.
Eventually things settled down, my friend headed out, and I was left at the bar until Eggs finished his shift and the bar closed. I got hit on in by a bachelor party group, a very drunk birthday boy, and an awkward 20-something who was still transitioning from college to post-college life. I was told the following in about the time span of an hour: You’re beautiful. I like the way you accessorize. Do you enjoy giving oral sex? Do you have a ride home? Can I have your number? Do I make you feel creeped out? I don’t talk to girls much so am I doing ok? How are you getting home? I finally said to these men, I’m going home with the bartender. It was classic. The look on their faces was surprise? Astonishment? Then of course they looked at Eggs like, do you know she plans to go home with you? Of course Eggs tried to play it cool but he definitely was chuckling under his breath. Although I am not totally surprised by these drunk men an their behavior, I will give them this- it made for an interesting Friday night.
Because it’s a new year and I am on a pursuit for not just happiness but THE happiest year of my life I figure I have to start taking a few more risks. I’m not talking about jumping out of a plane or rappelling down the side of a building. I’m talking about putting myself in potentially awkward situations. I am going on a blind date tomorrow night with a friend of a friend of a friend (did you follow that?). I have seen a slightly blurry picture of him and heard good reviews but we have never met nor does he have the faintest idea what I look like. Talk about taking risks! I am excited about this prospect and yet weary all the same. I have done the online dating-thing and while some dates have been ok, there have been a few train wrecks along the way. This is the part where I introduce you to one of my top three worst dates . . . ever.
We had met through an online dating site. He was cute, tall, had a great job, and he seemed kind of funny over email and texts. He was even willing to meet me at a bar in my neighborhood. What a gentleman! We met for drinks on a Sunday night and hit it off right away. He was definitely better looking in person but in a sort of geeky-and-I-don’t-know-I’m-cute kind of way. We talked about our jobs, college football, crazy vacations, crazy coworkers, and the list went on and on. Halfway through the date we were already bumping knees and leaning in to hear each word that exited from our mouths. He kissed me at the bar, which I wasn’t unhappy with but at some point he lingered too long and it got a little awkward. I mean, we were in a public place, not the front seat of a car. When it was time to part ways I told him I was just a 10-min walk from home but he insisted on driving me to my door. At the time I thought he was still being a gentleman. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid. When we got to my house he asked if he could use my bathroom since he had a long drive home. I didn’t want to be rude so I said ok and let him in but in hind sight, why didn’t he just use the restroom at the bar?? He came downstairs after using the bathroom and immediately sat next to me on the couch and started kissing me. Mid-kiss he stood up and said, “Do you mind if I make myself more comfortable?” He was holding his jacket open so I just thought he meant he wanted to take off his coat, which he did . . .and his pants. Yep. That’s right. He straight up took off his pants.
When I look back at this date I sigh because I see several points in the night where this could have been prevented. I should have had my guard up after that too-long kiss at the bar. I should have never let him drive me home. I should have never ever let him into my house. Needless to say, I told him to put his pants on and leave. Why do I bring this date up? Besides the fact that it is the best worst date story ever, or so I am told by my friends, I am reminded that dating is always a risk. Not just because you might end up with a dud but because you could end up with a creep. I do not think anything close to this will happen tomorrow. In fact, the friend of the friend already told him this story. He has promised to keep his pants on and in return I have promised not to suck. It should be fun.
This year I have decided to make a conscious effort to be the happiest I’ve ever been. What gave me this new found lease on life? I received this book, Meeting Your Half Orange by Amy Spencer (http://meetingyourhalforange.com/) for my birthday in December and it has completely changed my outlook on life. I call it the Lean In (http://leanin.org/book/) of the dating world. The formula is simple: what you put into the universe is what you will receive back. This means if you think you’re never going to find the right job or the perfect guy . . . you probably won’t. In order to receive positive experiences and opportunities you have to start embracing a glass-half-full kind of attitude. Spencer tells you up front, it’s hard work, but if you start retraining your brain a little each day you can actually feel the positivity start to seep in.
I know this sounds like a lot of positive hippie crap but in my case, I have nothing to lose. I’ve been on some terrible, terrible dates, some of which I will share on this blog. I have also been on some just ok dates but nope, no Mr. Right yet. However this year, after reading this book, I am no longer going to accept the ok for now guy or the really cute but this will never work guy. I’m also going to stop looking for him and simply let him come to me. Crazy, right? And I’m going to apply this same philosophy to my life and career.
To kick 2014 in the pants, I decided to spend New Year’s Eve with close friends at one of the biggest hotel parties in the Washington DC area. It was kind of like attending adult prom. There were lots of tuxedos, low-cut dresses, and booze as far as the eye could see. At one point there was one girl crying in the lobby, another girl falling out of her dress (yes, it was graphic and she was totally unaware), and a guy trying to not only take off his jacket but his pants were coming off as well. It reminded me of one of my online dates. More on that later. It wasn’t until after midnight that my friends and I found our own space on the edge of the dance floor and danced our faces off until well after 3AM. If that night has any indication how the rest of 2014 will go, I am excited to see what’s next.