Friday, April 5, 2013

i hate dinner dates.

it’s just awkward.
don’t get me wrong. i’m a chatty person and i will talk your ears off. i could talk to a dang wall if i were left alone long enough. i want to know where you went to school, when your birthday is, if you pull for unc over duke (go heels!), your favorite color and why you have the bad scar on your left knee. i want to hear all these stories including what your mom is like, why you and your sister get along so well or not, and whether you would order your steak rare or medium rare so i know how to fix it for you one day. these small details about you make up who you are and i want to know all of them. but i don’t want to do it over dinner.
as women, i think it’s our fault. for years, we’ve built this up in a man’s head that you need to take us to the extravagant, crazy restaurant on our first date to impress us – one where neither of us can pronounce half the menu and the cheapest wine is $100.00 a bottle and the total bill will consume half of his weekly paycheck. this kid is gonna have to eat ramen noodles the rest of the week now! geez.
not to mention, usually i have to dress up for these type of restaurants and if you’re anything like me, you have an obsession with clothes and totally hate wearing the same thing twice (this is my one major princess quality, get over it). and most of the time, this means i will want a new outfit for our date and will waste an outfit on a dude i don’t even know if i like yet! what pressure.
i mean i like food. i love food actually and totally am down to kill some dinner with you at a swanky place as smooth jazz vibes in the background......eventually. i want to be slightly buzzed off of my second glass of chardonnay as we plan our beach trip this coming up this summer. and the cool thing about us having a beach trip this summer probably means we have been dating for a while, hence this isn't our first date and hence being at this restaurant is no longer awkward with you because we did other “no pressure” stuff to get to know each other. so if i fall down getting out of the booth, you'll just laugh and extend an arm saying it's okay honey. whatever, i can be clumsy.
am i the only girl to feel this way?  think about it – you have to sit there at dinner and act freakin’ perfect. you have to make sure your hair is parted right and not standing up in awkward places because he’s sitting across from you staring. you have to fold the little napkin in your lap and dabble your mouth after each bite and order a salad because God forbid  you actually eat! oh ew, she ordered the fried chicken and loaded mashed potatoes! that alone is going to add fifteen pounds to her, you think he’s thinking so you settle for three pieces of lettuce because that impresses him, right? and you have to make sure that salad isn’t more expensive that what he’s ordering. you compile a couple of different options in your head just in case he orders the inexpensive dinner and so do you because that’s, like, totally rude. you null over the conversation waiting to finish chewing because no one like someone who talks with food in their mouth. also, you run the EXTREME HIGH risk of spitting what’s in your mouth and have it land on the table. you both glance down at the “who knows what” that’s on the table, back at each other, and back at the food and then there’s silence.
you also are constantly paranoid that you might be sitting there, chatting away, with a huge chunk of something in your front teeth. i have done this. it is embarrassing. and when you go to the bathroom, you check your reflection and there’s something wedged in there screaming hiiiiiiiiiii!  yeah, i’m gonna go sneak out the back and never talk to him again because my life is over. oh, and then there’s the awkward moment when the waiter sees you both are done and she/he is all one or two checks? and you’re all thinking:
shit i got this.
but wait?
do i offer to pay?
let me awkwardly go for my wallet. slowly. sloooowly...
is that rude to think he’s gonna pay?
am i gonna insult him if i offer?
i could just be reaching for my chapstick.
will he think i don’t think this is a date if i offer?
do i look poor?
no that’s dumb, i don’t look poor.
does he think i only see him as a friend because i’m not letting him pay?
cool. he just offered, i guess we’re good.

all that just ran through your mind in a 25 second time span when you could avoid that mini mid-life crisis from the get go by forgoing dinner and doing something cooler. something where you can act yourself because let's get real - the above scenario isn't you at all.

when i go eat, sometimes my hair is ugly and in a pony tail. sometimes i don't wear makeup. i don't always order the salad. okay, i never order the salad. and no i don't usually care what i order costs because it's my money and i got this. and if i spit something on the table when i'm with people i'm comfortable with, i'm all like oooooops my b and we move on. when the check comes, i easily swipe that deb card and move on with my day. it's easy and for goodness sake, it's not awkward.

so i may be exaggerating a dinner date just a bit. i guess it really isn't the end of the world.
but my point is that i would much rather go do something fun on date than stifle through two and a half hours of blah blah convo. let’s go bowling. let’s go to six flags. let’s go hiking (just don’t kidnap me). let’s go to a bar with our friends. let’s go get drinks on a sunny afternoon and watch a ball game. let’s go someplace i can wear jeans and top. let’s just do anything but dinner.
dinner is boring. and i don’t want to be bored on our date. dinner is by the book and this girl right here is anything but by the book. and the man i’m dating can’t be anything close to that either.

take note!
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