A Hot Date or Something Close Enough

by Jane Moneypenny

Fact: I’ve never been on a real date before.

Outside of high school dances and dinner with boyfriends, I’ve never been on a real “I’m attracted to you and want to spend more time with you” kind of date. With that said, these last few nights have felt date-like, sans the awkwardness.

Mr. Forehead Kisser came into town last minute for some business; he crashed on my couch the last night and the company put him up at a hotel tonight. A little history: we met 3 years ago through a close friend in a crowded bar. There was obvious chemistry, attraction and that innate feeling something would eventually happen (disclaimer: every time I’ve had this feeling about someone, it’s come true).

A year later, we hooked up on a drunken night (by drunken night, I mean only one of us was wasted and it wasn’t me). It wasn’t the best idea and we never spoke about it again, but slowly, we got closer and now I’m one of his closest friends (it’s not mutual on my end since he’s one of the slightly self-absorbed types that doesn’t know nearly the same about about me that I do about him). I listen to his dating stories (I’m everyone’s Girl Friday, ya know), his worries about his career (lawyer), his boredom with life, etc. etc. etc.

He got in late last night and for whatever reason, was awake enough to want to see a movie. We hit the Alamo Drafthouse to see the very hot Ryan Gosling in a very intense Drive and eat dinner. We giggle when the man next to us has a Confederacy of Dunces experience trying to pay his bill. He pays for both, despite my prostests.

He picks me up tonight and we drive around town looking for dinner. The conversation is strong, laughter is prevalent, and the food is good. I try to pay, but he insists no and we split it. Instead, I treat him to Austin’s favorite ice cream joint after. He tells me his playbook on a date: “Just bring up movies.” Everyone who’s ever had a late night hookup knows the movie line always works; everyone knows you’ll never see the full movie. We laugh at that.

We pull back into my apartment and he comes in. He’s tired from a day of meetings and asks if there’s any movies on. We end up playing Halo on Xbox. The tension is thick; it’s that feeling of right before something’s about to happen and then suddenly, he’s tired and has to make the long drive back north to the hotel. We hug and make plans for lunch and I’m left wondering if I’m imagining things. But maybe that’s what a really good friendship is: easy, platonic chemistry and laughter.

The stickler about the situation is I honestly know we would never work out; he has a laundry list of things that are deal breakers. But, that’s the tricky part about chemistry; it deludes you into thinking something’s there and worth hoping for. It makes your heart skip a beat as you hold your breath.

Or it could be just gas and stomach issues from dinner. 🙂 Ah, life sure keeps me on my toes.