Day ninety-two

Preamble

It’s 3:00 am and I just got home from work after a 14.5 hour very busy shift at the pub.  I had originally been working a day shift and said I would help out for a couple of hours because of the nice weather (our patio gets busy).  Well fourteen and a half hours later, I was finally finished.  My date for the day was pushed back – luckily he works with me and got called in to work, so we managed to have a quick date/beer together at the end of our shift.  My plan to write this afternoon, when I was supposed to be done work, didn’t happen.  Hence me writing this at now 3:18am, very tired and celebrating the start of my birthday with a glass of wine.  Today’s post will not win me a Pulitzer Prize.

The house date

The Makeup Artist's family recipe for butter chicken!

I can’t wait for next month, when The Makeup Artist said he will teach me how to cook his mom’s butter chicken recipe for International Cooking month (and I will post the recipe).  It was so delicious.  He had me over to his house, where he cooked lunch, we caught up (it’s been awhile since we’ve seen each other – we met while working together at a theatre company years ago), and he showed me his photos from Sri Lanka, where he spent a couple of months doing prosthetics and makeup for a film.  After lunch, he took me for gelato on a patio in the sunshine.

I wish I had both the energy and the brain power at the moment to write more about my date with The Makeup Artist.  He is so lovely and it was exactly what I needed – a hang out at his house, home-cooked food, and good conversation (sprinkled with some silly).  I love a guy who can cook.  Right now, though, I think my poetic prose is lacking and sleep is coming very soon.

Side topic that has nothing to do with my date, but wanted to fit in: More on open relationships

I couldn’t get my open relationship pal from OkCupid to agree to me posting his comments about open relationships (he hasn’t responded yet and I’m running out of time – guess I’ll have to save it for the book). I’ve talked a lot about the concept of open relationships, though, and many people seem fascinated by the concept.  So for your information:  click here to watch a video I found of Sex Matters on CTV – interview with the owners of Wicked and a tour of “Toronto’s First Hedonistic On-Premise Club. The club provides a safe, erotic environment where you can live out your sexual fantasies no matter how wild or how mild! “

Tonight

My final date! Woo hoo! (Well, I guess you already know how that went)  I can’t believe I made it through 31 days of dating.

Day ninety-one

Another set-up blind date

The Footy Player

Look at those big manly hands.  The Footy Player is a first for me in many ways this month – the first Aussie, the first jock, and the first really big, muscular man.  It was a completely blind date, set-up by a friend of mine from work.  He had asked my friend whether I would be paying for the date, because he was ‘doing me a favour’ by going on a date with me for my blog.  I turned it into a joke, asking him what kind of flowers he would like when I picked him up (and I actually did bring him a flower).

The original plan was a trip to High Park (it would have been his first time there – he’s only been in Toronto for six months), but the dark clouds and high probability of rain changed into a walk around his area (I met him outside of his apartment, by his suggestion) and a couple of beers at the Bier Markt on King.  We sat on the patio (the rain held out for a couple of hours) and watched the crazies come by – one even trying to sell us Visine, saying it was a good way to drug your date by putting it in their drink, then smashing it with his foot, spraying all over The Footy Player’s leg.

The Footy Player’s from Melbourne, where I lived in 2008-09, and ‘barracks’ (cheers) for the same Aussie rules footy team that I cheered for when I was living there – the Western Bulldogs (go Doggies!).  He travels a lot too.  But after that we really didn’t have that much in common.

When the lightning started and it was about to rain, the server brought us our bill.  He asked whether I wanted us to split it.  I said I’d pay for.  We ran into a friend of his who said he’d just been on the worst date – they had a quick two drinks, then she said she was tired and left.   Funny because we just had two drinks and I was really tired.  As I waited for the streetcar, he ran off home, trying to avoid the impending rain.

Not the best date, but not the worst.  There wasn’t any romantic connection there, but he’d be a great person to party and travel with.  And I did love to hear about all his travels (especially some crazy stories from his trip in Africa).  It was a piece of Melbourne – a city that I miss terribly.

Go Doggies! Aussie rules football in Melbourne.

Matchmaking services

If you don’t have friends to set you up, there are a bunch of matchmaking services that will match you up with someone they think you are compatible with.  I could not afford to do this, hence me relying on my friends to be my matchmaker.

Soulmates – Jewish matchmaking services

It’s Just Lunch – matchmaking for busy professionals

Venus and Mars Matchmaking- exclusive introductory service: must be single, successful, attractive, marketable, secure, and interested in a long term relationship – $1,000 package (three introductions) and a $5,000 “elite” version (a personalized search for up to 10 people).

Eligible Inc. – professional relationship service

Perfect Partners – personal relationship executive search firm – packages range from $3,800 (which gets you 18 months unlimited introductions) to $15,000 (for two years of “highly personalized” searching)

Hearts Canada – professional introductory service for sincere singles

LifeMates – Relationship consultants arranging meetings with interesting, compatible people of the opposite sex to achieve your relationship goals

Click here for an article from the Toronto Star about matchmaking services in Toronto: ” She paid $8,000 plus a “success fee” of $4,500.”

Today

A home-cooked lunch with my pick-up from Friday night.

Day ninety

The chillin date

The Suit took me to this to make me feel better

I showed up to my movie date half asleep, fighting a cold, hardly any makeup on and comfy clothes.  It’s been such a long week -working forty-one hours at the pub, while trying to date, see two concerts, go to my friend’s going away party, catch up with girlfriends and blog every day.  My body was not happy with me and starting to shut down.

I was late and disheveled when I showed up.  I was falling asleep on my feet.  The Suit was a perfect gentleman, as always, and took care of me from the minute we met up.  He already had the movie tickets bought, guided me to the theatre, where I sat down and he went and got us popcorn, Junior mints and a big Icee.  The Suit said I could fall asleep during the movie, if I wanted – that he would be ok with that.  Bridesmaids was the perfect choice, as it revived me with its gross-out humour mixed with romantic comedy/girlfriend comedy moments.

After the film, he bought us iced coffees and he walked me down to King Street, where we sat on some covered steps (it was raining by then) and talked about dating and the blog (he’s an avid reader).  We talked about how I was feeling, and I vented a little about some of the things going on that are driving me crazy.  It was absolutely the perfect date for how I was feeling and I thank him so much for making me feel better from start to finish.

How am I feeling?

I am pretty sick of dating at the moment.  It’s not that the dates aren’t good, or that I’m not having a good time while I’m on them, but it’s the planning and trying to fit it all into my life and work schedule.  And there’s a lot of drama involved – emotions are there.  I just want some time to myself to assess how I’m feeling and to fight off this cold that keeps trying to surface (I am not letting it!).

The other day while I was on the streetcar, I wrote a bit about my mental state:

“The more I date, the less I want to date.  Not just the less I want to go on dates, but also the less I want to be in a relationship.  I went into this month wanting to find a partner, and I leave not wanting anything serious from anyone.  Am I not ready to be in a relationship?  Or have I just not found the right person?  I do miss the intimacy of being with one partner and developing a relationship, but I’m very confused.  How can there be so many awesome guys and yet I don’t want to date?  Dating has almost lost it’s excitement.  It’s become normal and routine.”

I’m a little more positive now than I was those few days ago when I wrote this, but it’s important to show my ups and downs throughout this experience.  Time and rest will put a better perspective on how I feel about my month and want I really want, and I can’t wait for June 1st to arrive (31 dates ends with my 31st birthday).

Tonight

Another set-up by a friend, with an Aussie!  I’m actually looking forward to this one, despite the fact that he asked my friend whether I would pay…

Day eighty-nine

The girl date

The Girlfriends

No, this is not a lesbian date (or a threesome date if you look at the photo above), although I had considered going on one of those to complete my range of different kinds of dates.  This is a priority girl’s lunch.  Sometimes you need to put your friends above your dates, and as my one friend is moving away and yesterday was the last time I’ll see her in awhile, I canceled the coffee date I arranged with a single man to spend time with the girls.  Dating someone who always puts dating first over their friends and family would not be attractive.  Having a wide range of interests and people in your life who you love and who love you are extremely important.

I did, however, manage to make it to an amazing concert (hanging out with a bunch of single guys – “group date”?) at the Horseshoe Tavern after work – The Elastocitizens!  I took a photo with my phone – do you recognize the blurry bass player in the back right?  It’s Big Brother Bass from day thirty-nine.  At the concert, I ran into a guy I hadn’t seen in awhile, who both walked me partially home and is now going cook me lunch as my Monday date.  So, in essence, I picked up.

Not too exciting of a dating day, but everyone needs a little break and a chat with their friends to cope with the drama of dating!

The Elastocitizens at the Horseshoe.

Social Clubs

Speaking of group dates, there are quite a few social clubs and singles nights that could be a great way to meet other single people.  I was meaning to go to a singles event (besides speed dating) during this month, but they always happened when I was scheduled to work, or they were sold out (sign up early, as that tends to happen).  Here are a few that might be of interest in Toronto:

Tonight 

Chilling after a long week at the movies with The Suit (I can’t imagine he will wear a suit to the movies, though).

Day eighty-eight

The social experiment date

Tea with The Dater

I am almost at a loss for words.  I don’t really know how to describe my date with The Dater. I was so perplexed I completely forgot to take a photo during our date, so his photo is off of the David’s Tea website (one of our many stops in the evening, and so yummy).  It was either one of the best dates of the month, or one of the worst.  I should start from the beginning…

I met him on OkCupid, there were three messages, then I told him about the blog/book and what I am doing with the dating.  He responded with: “wow, what a douchebag move”, that he’s offended it’s not on my profile and that I’m just using him for an experiment (surprisingly the first guy to respond negatively). But, then said he’d still go on a date.  We went back and forth.  Him assuming all guys would be pissed off at me and the ones that agree are guys who can’t get dates anyhow, and me explaining that actually most guys are interested in what I’m doing, and the ones I chose to go out with are successful men who can get dates and are interesting in dating me for me.  I told him he could go on a date with me if he wanted to, but I didn’t want or need a ‘charity’ date with someone who would be angry with me the whole time.  I’m not sure what made me keep responding, but there was something about him I found challenging and interesting.  Then he said he was busy until the end of the month and I figured I’d never hear from him again.

Well, I did and we set up the date for last night.  He offered to pick me up from my house.  I was already weary of the date, so there was no way I was going to give him my address.  I even told a friend where we were going, just in case he ended up going crazy on me and I needed someone to rescue me.  I don’t really know what it was about him, though, but I still wanted to find out what he was about.

We ended up spending just under four hours together, talking the whole time – Indian food at King Palace (amazing food on Church, east of Yonge), walking to the Cameron House (we got there between sets of live music, so just had a drink), walked to David’s Tea, people watched, then ended the night with a final drink at the Elephant & Castle pub.  The Dater (he is an active dater, even admitting to needing cheat sheets when he dated a lot years ago to keep the girls straight – he has recently broken up with a long-term partner, so is back to dating) told me tons about his life and I also shared more than I normally do on a first date.  He has a sarcastic, dry sense of humour that makes for really interesting conversations paired with my gullible nature.  He made me laugh a lot (especially when he said I was very innocent – little does he know…).  I think we grew on each other, considering we were both a little weary of the situation at first.

The weird thing is, I felt a bit like I was in a social experiment of his own.  He is definitely an expert in dating and had ways to ask questions to get the responses he wanted to assess me.  And his paranoia about my experiment started to make me paranoid – was this a game for him?

At the same time, he challenges and intrigues me.  I had a lot of fun.  And he’s pretty cute.  He was definitely one of the most interesting dates I’ve had.  I want to hang out with him again to figure him out a bit more.  And I feel like he could teach me a thing or two about the art of dating (a skill I’m not sure I’ve learned, even after twenty-six days of dating – but then, maybe being genuine and the ability to connect with people are the only skills I need).

Tonight

Priorities… (will explain more tomorrow)