"Put yourself out there!"
"What do you have to lose?"
"DO IT FOR THE BLOG!"
All of which are solid reasons from my friends in favor of me jumping back into the dating pool. It's more like taking my first jump though, because I, for one, am not a recreational dater. I never have been. Interestingly enough, my past relationships didn't even have a real courting stage; it was sort of like I met a new buddy who then stuck around for the next couple of years (not to downplay any relationship). SO, that makes me a thirty-year-old who has never entered the dating pool - until now.
I'm thinking of it more as a wading pool though, and I dipped my big toe in a few weeks back.
Every year, an Irish pub downtown hosts a huge St. Patrick's Day festival. I usually try to avoid the chaos (think a mob of drunk people in the street at 7AM, clad in green, spilling their green beer while trying to ride my big dog like a horse), but last year I learned it was Ellie's favorite holiday. She convinced me to join her - and to even be somewhat festive - so out I went, wearing olive green pants (mine) and a green boa (hers).
To be honest, I had a blast. It felt less hectic than I had anticipated, which I'd attribute to good company. For that reason, I didn't even think twice about going this year, but I did opt for jeans and a black tank top instead of rocking anything green.
Ellie and I walked around for a bit, did some people-watching, and at one point began chatting up two guys on the corner of our street. One was talkative and one, well, he wasn't. (He did have "pretty eyes" though, as Ellie pointed out.) Not much has ever stopped me from talking before, so I tried my best to carry a conversation with Pretty Eyes while Ellie was talking to his friend a few feet away.
"You live downtown?" I began.
"Yeah, just moved here," he said, a bit distracted.
"Oh, from where?" I continued.
Mkay. "Nice. What do you do for work?"
"Uh...it's complicated," he muttered, still distracted, looking beyond me into the sea of green.
"Okaaay," I said in a sing-song voice, taking the obvious hint. Pretty Eyes was pretty uninterested.
I shot Ellie a look. Help! She came right on over with the friend, and we thankfully swapped conversations.
"Your friend isn't very talkative," I joked (but not really) about Pretty Eyes, who was just out of earshot. "So, what does he do for work? His job is complicated?"
"You wouldn't believe him if he told you," the friend replied.
I'd be lying if I said I wasn't intrigued by the evasiveness at that point, but it wasn't enough. I was ready to go and made that clear. I heard the friend whisper something to Pretty Eyes about getting my number (you're fucking stupid if you don't get her number) and I was flattered - until I quickly wasn't. We had just waved goodbye, and Pretty Eyes still hadn't asked for my number.
"Hey," he called out to me as I was walking away. "Can I give you my number?"
Well that's new, I thought. I couldn't tell if I should be offended, or if I liked the idea of not being harassed by some guy I'd just met (and hardly spoken to). Still undecided, I handed over my phone and watched as he typed.
And with that came a ripple in the wading pool.