Out of all the dating apps out there, the one I like most is called happn. If you don’t know it already, it gives you potential matches based on people who also use the app and who you happened (get it?) to have “crossed paths” with throughout your day. It even tells you the intersection where you crossed! Creepy and cool at the same time, right? I know. I guess it uses your phone’s GPS, and it’s surely tracking my every move and knows what I had for breakfast this morning, but I’m not ashamed to admit that it just doesn’t bother me, well for this purpose at least… I like knowing that my matches live or work or hangout in areas where I live or work or hangout, it makes me feel like we already have something in common. Is that weird?
Anyway, I matched with a dude who owns a restaurant around the block from me, and even before sending my usual “Hey, what’s up?” opener, I started thinking about all the free food I could get if we actually hit it off. Once we started chatting, I learned that he is also one of the chefs of the restaurant. Owner AND chef? Ooh la la! Love me a guy who can cook so I don’t have to (pretend to). I’m telling you, this happn app knows what’s up. Turns out he also lived pretty close to me. Bonus points all around.
After a few days of chatting, we decided to meet up, but immediately ran into a problem. He worked every afternoon and evening, and I worked every weekday. We just couldn’t find a time where neither of us was working. We kept bouncing possible days and times back and forth, but nothing was matching up, it was starting to feel like it would never
happen happn. We finally came up with with something that kind of worked and somewhat resembled a date- me joining him on a break from work to go walk his dog on a Friday late afternoon. It wasn’t ideal for either of us, but it was good enough.
Friday early afternoon rolled around and I got a message from him saying that he wouldn’t be able to make it for our quasi-date since one of his employees called in sick. This whole “restaurant owner” job was starting to look a lot less cool, and was becoming pretty inconvenient for me. WTF. He asked if we can push the date to later on that night, but I already had plans with some friends. Meeting this guy was starting to feel like a lot more energy than it was worth. I wasn’t mad, but I was starting to write him off in my head based purely on the fact that we may never be able to meet. Maybe living and working in close proximity to each other wasn’t always enough!
The next morning I had kind of forgotten about my potential personal chef and was in the middle of running some errands when I got a message from him. He said he was free for the next 2 hours and could meet if I was free too. *Clap emoji*. For some reason I was impressed that he hadn’t given up on us meeting, and also by his spontaneity. We agreed to meet in an hour at a nearby café and then walk back together to my house and his restaurant.
All of the sudden I was excited about this date. Not because I thought I was about to meet my soulmate, but because it had a set end time! No awkward lingering at the end, no Sh*t is he bored, should we call it? am I bored? should we get the cheque? It made me think of the episode of Sex in the City where Carrie was “expiration dating”. Great minds, amirite?!?
So we met at the café, but by the time he got there we really only had 45 minutes together before he started work at 2pm. Even better. I was pleasantly surprised to see that he was better looking in real life than in his pictures, and I was equally surprised that I actually enjoyed talking to him in person. We stayed at the café for about a half hour, where I asked him all about his restaurant and what I can get for free if I was his girlfriend (joke!), and then we walked back towards our places, said goodbye, and continued on with our days.
When I got home I was happy that it was a decent date, but I was even happier that it was a fast date! Holy sh*t I think I’m on to something here. As a first date, like I’ve said in a previous post, the goal (for me) is just to see if I can tolerate the guy’s stupid face, to make sure that I don’t hate him when we meet in person. If he seems OK enough, THEN I’m happy to do something a little more substantial for the second date, like dinner or something. OMG this expiration date idea was brilliant, how had I never thought of it before?! It was just long enough to decide if I wanted to see him again, without taking up too much of my time or energy. Even if it had gone badly, I wouldn’t be annoyed since it was just 45 minutes of my day! I wouldn’t have wasted a Thursday evening on him when I could have been at home watching Scandal in my pajamas.
For this quickie date, I another thing that I liked was that we sat for a bit, but we also walked for a bit- something about seeing him in motion felt like I was getting a better initial feel for this internet stranger. Also, on a first date I like to go for some non-committal drinks, and although we’re not having an entire meal, I usually feel the need for a 2-drink minimum, like that it’s the polite thing to do whether it’s going well or not (sadly, the ladder is more common). But this one was short enough there was no time obligation, so conversation didn’t run out or feel like it was dragging. I’ve had dates where I’m having a good time, but because we each ordered that third drink or the service was slow, we both started getting tired and conversation started to feel forced, leading to a false not-so-good end. This way it left me wanting more. I was amazed.
Is there any way I could execute this type of date again in the future? It was just circumstantial that it turned out this way, but it was so smart and effective! Is it just because I’m so cynical that this idea excites me this much? Like since most of my first dates are the pits? I’m not going to lie, I’ve actually had the thought of wanting to FaceTime with a guy as a first date so I can decide then and there if he’s an awkward weirdo and not waste my time by leaving my house. Yes I know, I should be ashamed of myself. Nevertheless, this expiration date seems like a perfect middle-ground!
What do you think about my version of expiration dating? Would it interest you? Any ideas on how to make this the norm? Let’s revolutionize the dating world! Who’s with me?