I have been on a cold streak (10 years) when it comes to dating. I am really good at meeting my date. I say, “Hello.” and listen to her answer. Then, I conduct myself as a normal human being interacting in a way that employs both my verbal and physical abilities. I listen to her talk and answer accordingly. I laugh when she says something clever and cast sympathetic eyes when she tells me something sad. I sit and hold back my conversation in order to let her speak more about herself. I also offer to pay if we are patronizing a place of business. If she insists, I let her pay for because a.) I have almost no money, and b.) I want to show her that I’m progressive, too. I am so progressive that I’ll let her pay for my entire meal.
Though I think I am handling myself well and carefully, I don’t think that I look and sound like what I think I look and sound like. What, to me, seems like genuine laughter at one of her anecdotes may, in fact, look like a crazy person punching the table and kicking wildly while laughing two octaves higher than most humans can speak. What, to me, seems like pensive thought while she shares something somber, instead, looks like utter confusion and profuse sweating. As I sit and try to listen, I seem to laugh intermittently at just the right moments and at just the right volume. Though, in reality, this looks like a manic seizure that years of therapy and Xanax have not fixed. Though I think that I am being progressive by letting her pay, I am in fact regressing the date back to 1955 when the woman was in charge of feeding her man.
I am now at a point where I feel a strong compulsion to text the girl immediately after every date because I am so afraid that she will never want to see me again. I know I shouldn’t do it, but I feel such a strong urge to do so. Tonight, after another first date that I thought went relatively well, I texted her about twenty minutes after the date. This time, she said she’d like to go out again. I wonder what a second date is like.