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Carbs and Kisses

[Forgive my lack of compulsiveness. I’ve neglected to write down or measure or pinch anything related to 4-HB this week. My diet’s been on point; lots of omelettes, salmon, and Moe’s chicken fajitas. I experimented with the 62-lb kettlebells, with rousing success. I unapologetically ate two giant sweet potatoes for breakfast that day. It felt goooooood.


(The *ideal* ratio of meringue to potato.)

My lesson: if you’re going to eat carbs, make them work for you, like repleting muscle glycogen after a workout session that leaves you gassed from the intensity. Here’s a smart blog post about whether we even *need* carbs.]

On to more drama:

I’ve been pretty good this week about approaching women, even though it hasn’t led to any dates yet. Of course, I’m keeping a spreadsheet of where and when I meet these girls, how hot they are, whether I was good about making eye contact and saying hi, grabbing their attention, making them laugh or get emotionally engaged with me, finding something more interesting to talk about, etc. My first impressions from the data: their looks don’t particularly count when it comes to my confidence in the situation. For some reason, I’m either in the moment and bold (these interactions work better), or I’m overthinking the whole damn thing and not focused on figuring out the ‘truth of the interaction’, in which case it falls flat.

Example (just now): a gorgeous girl sits at the table next to me at the coffeeshop. I make good eye contact and in a strong voice (GOOD) ask her what she’s working on (BAD! FACTUAL!). She tells me she’s an MD-PhD student (BAD; SHORT UNEMOTIONAL ANSWER, but what did I expect?) and I ask her how long she’s got left, then joke about whether that’s something she even wants to think about (GOOD). She mentions the new paintings on the walls of the place (GOOD) and I point out the one I like the most (BAD?), then ask her which one she likes (GOOD). She waffles on an answer (BAD) and there’s a pause (BAD), and she tells me she needs to get back to her work (BAD). And this is what usually happens every time I approach someone. I have had some mini-successes, but circumstance (one gal I really hit it off with had a boyfriend, and another one was on a road-trip to New York and had just stopped in for a coffee and a scone.)

Switching gears, The Match.com Girl, on whom all of my dating brain-power has been focused recently, sent me two more texts in the days prior to our date, replete with smiley faces, one a picture of something she tried to bake, one a general “excited about tonight” message. I get it. She (for the time being) likes me. I learned that there is a thin line between “she’s already doing the work for you, so relax” and “if you fuck this up, you have nobody to blame but yourself.” And I was saying a lot of the latter to myself. Motivation.

My gameplan was this:
1) Don’t get too logical – if I have one bad habit on dates (actually, I have about 30), this is the most consistent and maybe the easiest to fix. I go into interview mode like *that*. Girl asks question, I answer question, no matter how personal or how first-date-awkward the topic is. The playful energy dissipates, and next thing I know, we’re “friends”.
2) Be flirty – touch her, brief little non-creepy hand-holds and shoulder taps. Be a little bit bold. This may not mean trying to make out with her (this is, after all, a first date, and an ‘online’ first date at that), but moving in that direction would be nice. Start at the bar, then move to somewhere quieter for the second round (dartboard; outdoor patio). Compliment her on her looks as well as her intellectual capacities.
3) Don’t talk too much about yourself just to keep the conversation going – a pause is OK here and there. She’s allowed to attempt to flirt, too.

So how did I do? Depends on when you asked me.

So we met at a bar last night and she was 10 times prettier than her pictures. 5’8″, thick brown hair that fell in front of her eyes, great curvy body; she had on a tight silver-and-black top that bared her shoulders, tight heans, and some big sexy glittery heels. We sat down and had a drink, chatted about some light-hearted topics. Bad blind dates, music, our OCD tendencies. We talked about writing *a lot*, which may or may not have been too personal. It was a nice connection, but I could have peppered it in more with a little sarcasm or punchy one-liners. Overall, though, I was flirtier than I have been. I laughed, I touched her arm a few times. I was assertive in moving us outside to a quieter area as we sipped our second round of tequila-and-sodas.

She complimented me a bunch; I didn’t, as much, which was probably the weakest element of my performance. I could have told her she looked cute (did she ever), I could have asked her about the bracelets that so seductively dangled from her wrist. The best/most in-the-moment interchange was as we finished up our second round of drinks, and we shared food vices, a back-and-forth can-you-top-this debate, spoken entirely in recipes.
“Snoballs.” (her)
“Ohhh. Oreos.”
“Oreo Cheesecake.”
“Dark chocolate.”
“Chocolate covered macadamias.”
“I *love* chocolate-covered nuts. With fried pickles.”
“Dude, pizza.”
“Yes. Pizza flavored Pringles. Pizza rolls, pizza bagels. Pizza in any form.”
“Salt and pepper potato chips.”
“Barbecue potato chips.”
“I put potato chips in my ice cream.”
“You’re ruining the chips.”
“Don’t hate on my creation.”

Fortune favors the bold, and I didn’t ratchet up the pressure like I wished. Then again, it was a first date. I was flirty enough, maybe. I always err on the side of anxiety and not pushing the envelope again. Then again, I had my reasons. I’d like some positive reinforcement for my efforts, and she didn’t touch me *once*. No pat on the arm, no big silly laughs, no leaning into me when she and I talked. And her eye contact was less than encouraging, distracted as she was by nothing particular on the TV and a couple animated conversations going on around her. It was all I could think about as we checked our watches, called it a night, and hugged briefly in the parking lot before parting ways. I walked home and had a MELTDOWN in my bed. I hyperventilated, I teared up, I punched my mattress with furious jabs like I was Manny Pacquiao. It was pretty awful. Hopeless. More of the same crap.

I woke up this morning, fully intending to pull into the Dunkin Donuts drive-thru and destroy my shit with a dozen Boston Cremes, when I got this text message from The Match.com Girl, at 6am:

” Hi! I had a great time and would like to see you again. I’m working out of town most of this weekend, so maybe one day next week? :) “

Now, of course, I’m forced to re-evaluate every gesture and word and subtlety of last night. First off, how presumptuous am I to think that anything less than full make-out at the end of a first date (and an online date, which adds a certain layer of awkwardness by itself) is a failure? And maybe she’s just not a touchy-feely kind of person? This, I’m not so sure about. I rightly have flashbacks to my non-dates with The Impossibly Tall Blonde, who met me for lunch once and asked me out for drinks twice, only to drop the hammer of wanting to be nothing more than friends. Needless to say, I’ve settled into a state of cautious pessimism, with occasional bursts of smiley cheer.

My plan: I have to ratchet up the pressure. Our next date *has* to be a bit more intimate, a bit more romantic/sexual in nature. I can’t spend another evening with her and at the end not know if she’s interested in hooking up with me or not. She mentioned liking live music, *and* she loves to dance, so I’m thinking a bar on a weekend night with a band and a dance floor/area? Thoughts?

Oh, and I plan on making THIS for cheat day Saturday. And sending the girl some pictures to make her jealous.



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