Monday, 4 March 2013

First Date(s)

Try a thing you haven’t done three times. Once, to get over the fear of doing it. Twice, to learn how to do it. And a third time to figure out whether you like it or not.
- Virgil Thomson

When you've been single for a while, you inevitably forget things.

You forget associations you once held; with places, activities and routines, you forget the spoken nuances that were once familiar: words, phrases, nicknames and in-jokes. Then finally, after what feels like far too bloody long, joy of joys - you forget why you were even with someone in the first place.

(That last bit's well good.)

Other things get forgotten too if you allow yourself enough time: what a heart flutter feels like, the nervous expectation of a text message, or the simple comfort of being physically and emotionally concerned with someone else.

And if you've spent your singleness occasionally arranging and then cancelling dates because something just doesn't feel right, or experiencing flashes of attraction that fade into nothing when the sun comes up, you're also likely to forget something else: the unmitigated terror of going on a first date.

You forget the process of choosing what to wear, and the nerves of picking the right place to meet; of getting it just right (not too busy, not too quiet, not too expensive, not too cheap, not too weird, no strippers, and a fire exit out the back - just in case).

You forget how you're meant to greet a person for the first time when there's the pretense of maybe, perhaps, something more happening between you than friendship, and the appropriate way to say goodbye when the end of the night comes and you suspect that might be the case - hug? Kiss on one cheek? Two? Lips? Handshake?

Then, after the event - you'll wonder how you still managed to get it wrong even after all that thought.

The texts once you're both home - well, you've probably forgotten how they're supposed to start and end too, and you forget how to infer "I like you, let's arrange another" without putting yourself out on a limb and saying exactly that.

Above all, after too long spent panicking about the prospect of dates and all they mean, you forget how nice it feels to be excited about seeing someone again.

But, you think, as you check your phone again and allow your mind to wonder a bit, like most forgotten things, you'll probably pick it all up again fairly quickly - given the chance.


nuttycow said...

yay! Sounds like the date went well :) When's the second?

(as a note to self, I really should write up my recent escapades too)

Amy said...

This is a very exciting post. Hurrah! xx

Leigh said...

Yes, 100% this. I'm really happy for you, Jo. It's lovely to see you excited about a date, not nauseated.

RAF Brynolf said...


Bella Luna said...

This post excites me muchly...x

Ellie said...

Yep. Lots of forgetting and re-experiencing. Fun and fear!

Please Don't Eat With Your Mouth Open said...

nutty - There may be a delay to these posts...

Amy - Exciting for everyone else who has forgotten how terrifying dating is, I think.x

Leigh - Nausea still comes.


Bella - Strange how dates excite everyone except the dater... ;)

Ellie - Mostly fear. Fun, but always fear.

Robyn said...

all so good-the start is the best-the does he like me/do I like him/could it be...that is the bit I like...


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