Above Average: UPDATE

App: Hinge

Name: Jared*

# of Dates: 4

Recap:

Out of everyone I had met during my time in the NYC-area, Jared was the one I vibed with the most. Not only did we have the same sense of humor, similar views, and food tastes but, he was also the kindest person I had met. (Plus he knew his way around a neck and a puss which definitely helped.)

We just got along and for whatever reason, things felt easy and comfortable. So comfortable that on our fourth date I asked if he would come away with me to Ocean City, MD for our fifth. Things were moving quick but it just felt right to do.

What Happened:

We had a great fucking time on vacation. Not only did we fuck enough to disturb our Airbnb host but, we genuinely enjoyed our time together. We went to Assateague Island and saw wild horses 10 feet away, ate at a crab house, rode a Ferris wheel, ate EVERYTHING, and danced our asses off at Seacrets.

The biggest thing to happen on the trip though was that we became a couple. Two people who are dating. Not talking, not friends with benefits, not seeing each other, not fucking around. Exclusively dating. And I was so happy. As soon as we decided that this was what we wanted we called each other “babe” nonstop because it just felt so good.

When I got dumped 2 years ago I never thought I’d be with someone again and then Connor came into my life for a bit and proved me wrong.

After things with Connor fell through and I moved to NJ I didn’t think I’d meet anyone special. A few showed potential (Looking at you Dan, Khalil, and Reed) but several didn’t make it. Anywhere. Close.

Some of my personal favorite, awesomely bad encounters include:

Then there were the awkward situations:

My “journey” was not what I expected in the least. I never thought I’d go out with over 30 guys and have 40-something dates in a year alone. But it happened. I didn’t think it would be as fun as it was or that I’d meet genuine people. Up until I moved I had only kissed two people and there were a lot of things and people to experience! That said, I also didn’t think it would feel as lonely as it did. Yes I went out with someone nearly once a week but, when only one every few months stands out it can get pretty old. (Like really, who the fuck raised these guys?!)

I started writing and documenting my dates as a way to share my version of the NYC dating experience, create something to remember this period of my life, and get the creative juices flowing again. What it became was something more. The messages of encouragement, positivity, and solidarity which came through were fucking amazing. To know that I was not the only one experiencing weird shit or that I wasn’t really a being a skank made this journey that much better. It has meant so much to me to hear your stories and struggles and it is clear that no matter where you are, what you look like, or who you meet—dating is fucking weird.

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The Coworker: UPDATE

Name: Elijah*

Recap:

Elijah and I worked together several years ago and I kind of always thought there was something between us but I figured I was wrong. Plus, even if there was something, I was seriously dating someone at the time and our company was not about its employees getting together.

This year, he was in NYC and we had possibly the best date I had ever been on. He was so nice, I was so comfortable with him, and it ended it a solid ass kiss. Only thing was that he lived far away.

Update:

Despite the distance between us, Elijah still messaged me pretty consistently after our date and would get pretty flirty. I asked what he was up to one day and he said he had the day off and was on the beach. I responded with something along the lines of, “Oh, living the dream!” He countered with, “Not quite, the dream is to have you next to me.” WOAH. Damn. Alright.

About a month or so after his visit, I met up with my old boss (who happened to be best friends with Elijah when we all worked together.) We were catching up when he started with,

“So I heard you had a visitor…”

“Yeah, Elijah was in the city last month and we caught up. It was nice.”

“Oh I am sure he treated you sooooo nicely.”

“Yeah? I guess? …WHAT DO YOU KNOW?”

I gave the quick and dirty of what happened and then my boss said, “I don’t know if I should be telling you this but he has had the biggest crush on you. He would ask me all the time if he could just take you out on a date and I had to keep telling him no since you worked for me. I told him that y’all can hang out and be friends then after graduation he could do whatever.”

O.M.G. Wow. Holy shit. This blew my fucking mind. Like yes, I kinda always thought he had a crush on me but I also looked very different then, really didn’t give a fuck since I already had a boyfriend, and made no effort since said boyfriend lived far away. I was literally at my grossest and Elijah was that into me.

So many things started making sense. It wasn’t just that we would get food all the time. It was how he looked at me from across the table. It was how he would always stop by when I was working to “see my boss”. It was how he would check on me after a rough night at work. It was how he would text me over holiday breaks just to see how I was doing. It was how he was so happy to have taken a photo with me at our year end dinner. I was right all along.

A part of me felt like I had missed an opportunity from way back when. What would that date have looked like? Would we have lasted awhile? Would either of us have moved after? But, as much as I wonder I know I wouldn’t have wanted it at the time. I was so in love with my boyfriend and clearly my boss wouldn’t have let it happen. But sometimes when it’s late, I had a bad day, and I’m alone, I go to bed thinking “I WAS FUCKING RIGHT. YOU GOT A MAN AT YOUR UGLIEST. YOU GO LAURA.” And I wake up with the biggest smile.