Sinking the Balls

Six weeks post-surgery and I’m finally back in the dating game!

Almost a year ago, I got matched with Mathew on Tinder. We messaged each other back and forth for a few weeks and I seem to recall we had tried making plans to meet up, but for some reason or another the timing just didn’t work out. He was finishing up his business program and was off to Argentina to spend his final co-op semester there. We decided to stay connected over Facebook with the possibility of meeting when he returned – but our conversation simply faded away when he left.

Fast forward to two weeks following my operation. AB and I started talking less and less. He never came to visit me which was disappointing and my intuition was telling me to move on. Being housebound, I decided to get cozy on my couch and begin to update my dating profiles with new pictures (I look like a totally different person now!) I began to start my search into the new crop of men that had entered the world of online dating.

Sure enough, at the top of my search list on PofF – appeared Mathew! I had almost forgotten about him. His profile said he was back in town, looking for a relationship, and still lived in my neighbourhood. I decided there was no harm in sending him a private Facebook message to see how he was doing.

He responded, and again, we started writing back and forth. We caught up a bit on both of our lives – and I explained to him about my jaw surgery which he seemed really interested in. About a week into our conversation – I asked if he’d still be open to meeting up for drinks. He said yes! I agreed for him to pick me up at 8:30PM last night and we’d go to a local pub to play some pool and have a drink. Not that I usually advocate having someone you’ve never met before pick you up on a first date – but I thought this guy was harmless and that it was unlikely he’d kidnap me.

He arrived right at 8:30PM. My stomach churned with nerves but mostly excitement. As I entered his car, he said hello in a deep, sexy voice and I immediately melted. He was gorgeous and smelt divine. Mathew pulled out the GPS on his phone to locate the closest pubs and once we settled on one – away we went. Despite my minor recovery lisp – we managed to have a really great car ride conversation – talking about our family, and places we’ve traveled to.

We arrived at the pub and when we began walking towards the entrance, I noticed he was very tall – probably 6’1! No faults so far…

The pub wasn’t huge but there was a private area in the centre with a pool table and a few tables and chairs. Nobody was there so we joked about how he had reserved the section just for us. We placed our coats down and went to the bar to order drinks. This was my first drink post-surgery, and it was amazing! It was nice to finally drink something besides ensure shakes and apple juice…

We placed our drinks down and started playing a game of pool. We flat out admitted at the beginning we were both horrible at pool – but would still give it our best go. Now I’m not sure if it was the few sips of alcohol in me or my new found confidence, but I was sinking those balls in one after the next. ;) Poor Mathew wasn’t having as easy a time, and told me I must have been lying and that I’ve been playing this game all my life. He seemed quite impressed. When I got 3 in a row, he said, “well done” and put his hand out to shake mine but I playfully said “no, I think that deserves a hug!” Seriously – am I the same person?! He opened his arms and embraced me in a warm hug which I could have easily held onto the rest of the night.

I ended up winning and gave myself a little pat on the back. We then sunk the remaining balls and sat down at our table where the drinks were. We opened up so much to one another – which I thought was incredible for a first date! He asked to see before and after pictures of my surgery which I was a bit hesitant to show, but I agreed to it and he was blown away. He really didn’t think it was the same person. Surely – it was! I loved how interested he was in my life, my stories and my surgery. He in turn was so open with me about his life – his family, childhood and even surgeries he had gone through. Most importantly – we bonded over our love for word games and N64. We both play an addicting phone app called Words with Friends (kind of like a virtual game of Scrabble which I highly recommend everyone play!)

It was 11PM and I knew we should probably head back soon as we had work the next day. Mathew also had to get up early but kept saying, “whatever you want, I’m cool to stay until whenever” – it was exciting that he wasn’t the one to mention having to leave. That he genuinely wanted to spend more time with me. As the night went on, it got busier and another group of people started playing pool. I could tell there were a few girls staring over at us and I kept thinking – how lucky am I to be with this incredible, gorgeous guy. Truly… I have no clue why he’s still single but I didn’t want to bring that up on a first date.

Anyway – I made the decision for us to leave at 11:15PM. We got into his car and blasted the heater (it’s freezing in Toronto so it was nice to get cozy). He drove us back to my house and parked the car. Ugh… the moment – will he kiss me? I damn well wanted to kiss him! However, I can’t feel my bottom lip… literally. I’m still numb and was kind of curious to see what I could and couldn’t feel in a kiss after 6 weeks.

Unfortunately I didn’t get a kiss. However, the first thing he said when we parked was that he had a great time and would love to see me again – even suggesting we go see a movie next week. I was over the moon excited, but stayed cool and responded with, “I’d love that.” He hugged me goodnight and I told him to drive home safe. I got in, ran to my room – stared at myself in the mirror and smiled. I smiled because I was staring at a girl that was more confident, and gleaming from head to toe. A girl who finally felt happy in her own skin. This was the first date where I didn’t end it thinking, “I wonder if he liked me?” To have such a successful first date after being out of the dating game for almost two months – was incredible.

So now we wait. I hate the “game” so much – but unfortunately you have to play a bit hard to get at the beginning! The hook is there, now just have to reel him in. I’ve decided I’ll wait for Mathew to write to me – but if he hasn’t reached out by Sunday I may shoot him a casual message. Unless you can think of a better post-first-date strategy to lock down Date #2?

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Conflicted

Adam and I got matched on Tinder at the time I started getting to know AB. We had four mutual friends and lived fairly close to one another. I learned he worked in the financial industry downtown Toronto, his family lived up North (near where I live) and we were both Big Brother fans.

Adam and I tried meeting up, but unfortunately it didn’t work out. We had little opportunity to plan for any other day as he was leaving on a work trip for several weeks. We decided to add each other on Facebook and get in touch when he was home. As I got to know AB more – I started wondering if Adam would write to me when he got back and if he did, if I’d even want to meet up with him.

Sure enough – about a week ago, Adam reached out to me saying he was back in town and he asked if I still wanted to meet for drinks. I was torn, because although I think AB is a very nice and caring guy, I didn’t want to close this door since I had felt that Adam and I would be quite compatible when we first connected. We made plans to go to a pool hall / bar downtown yesterday evening. We met at 7:30 – he was already waiting outside. I approached him and boy was he tall… I learned he was 6’4! He smiled, said hello and put his hand out to shake mine but instead I went in for a hug. We proceeded upstairs to the bar and pool table area. He got drinks for both of us – I got a comso and he got a beer. We sat down at a nearby table. I was living vicariously as he talked about his tales of adventure – getting to swim with sharks and sea lions. After about twenty minutes, we went over to a pool table and got a game going. There were certainly flirtatious vibes in the air. We were both equally horrible at the beginning – neither of us able to sink a ball, but the more alcohol we consumed, the better our shots seemed to get.

I learned we had fairly similar taste in music. I asked Adam what the most recent concert was that he went to and my jaw almost dropped to the floor when he said, “I don’t know if this classifies as a traditional concert, but I went to a taped Bryan Adams event recently”. The exact same concert I had gone to with AB. We could have been rows apart from each other. I mean, what are the chances? We kept taking our turns at pool, and we seemed so completely relaxed in each others presence. I learned we had gone to the same camp when we were younger, he used to work as a lifeguard a mere five minutes from my house and that he too is very close with his family.

After we finished our game of pool – we sat back down and talked for another 45 minutes. He was tall, dark and handsome – and had the sweetest smile and eyes. I could have looked into them all night but alas the night had to come to an end as I had to get up for work early this morning. At around 11 he walked me to the subway station where we said goodnight and he told me he’d be in touch.

The subway ride home was a tough one for me. I was going back and forth in my head between AB and Adam. I definitely connected more with Adam from the get go, whereas it took a bit longer for AB and I to find common ground. Adam and I are also from the same religious background – so it was nice to relate on that level. I also like that Adam and I have mutual friends and he is familiar with my neighbourhood.

However, then I reflected on my relationship with AB who has to this day been so caring towards me and seems really into me. However, I just don’t know if I would have even agreed to meet up with Adam if I was completely convinced that AB and I were meant to be together.

How much of a role do you think religious and cultural backgrounds play when developing a relationship with someone? I feel conflicted because I don’t want to lead AB on any further if I start to see Adam, but I’m afraid of letting him go completely. Do you think I’m being unfaithful by dating two guys at one time if neither relationship has been identified as exclusive?

Okay to Mix Work and Pleasure?

Yesterday I had a scheduled meeting with a senior designer at a fairly large advertising agency in Toronto. I had met him about a month ago as part of a design conference and was completely in awe when I first laid eyes on him (as I’m sure a million of the other girls in the room were). I was expecting to meet professionals who were in their mid to late 30s or 40s. Instead, I walk into one of the rooms and there I am standing face to face with a guy who looks to be my age in very casual attire. Gorgeous blue eyes and shaggy brown hair, with a bit of a stubble. Very tall — at least 6 feet, and he was wearing a sports cap. While he was explaining what his agency was all about and some of the work they did, I was blown away, yet at the same time incredibly distracted listening to the words coming out of his mouth. I kept saying to myself… “stop being so unprofessional and FOCUS,” but I just couldn’t get over the fact that he was the senior designer there. Prior to showing us some of the work the ad agency had done, he talked about his past work experiences and I was amazed at some of the big agencies he had worked at prior to his current position.

I thought to myself… he must be incredibly talented having gotten to the level he is currently at, also seemingly no older than 25 or 26. He also appeared almost TOO attractive. One of those guys who I’d most likely be too shy to approach in a bar. Then again, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. In my eyes, he certainly got my attention. Another thought running through my head… “is he gay?” Well you never really know. I decided to keep my fantasy alive of me and him being a power couple in the design industry.

A few days following the conference I wrote to him asking if they were looking for a summer design intern or Junior Graphic Designer. Unfortunately after a few correspondences I found out they had already hired one for the summer. Despite this, he had offered to meet me one-on-one to discuss my portfolio and give me pointers. Of course I jumped at the opportunity and agreed to meet him.

For those of you who haven’t read the novel called ‘Fifty Shades of Grey,’ I’d say go buy it this instant. It’s part of a trilogy and once you start you really can’t put it down. I’ve listed it under my Goodreads widget in the sidebar.

Quoted from the ever so trusted Wikipedia…

Fifty Shades of Grey is a New York Times bestselling erotic fiction paperback and e-book by E.L. James. Set largely in Seattle, the trilogy traces the deepening relationship between college graduate Ana Steele and a young business magnate, Christian Grey.

Until you read it this association won’t make sense. However, I truly felt like the main character Anastasia Steele prior to meeting this guy similar to the other main character in the novel — Christian Grey. Similarly, I became in awe of someone close in age, who I found incredibly attractive and appeared in my eyes so powerful, smart and sophisticated.

Yesterday was the day. I arrived fifteen minutes early and was greeted 5 minutes later by him. He gave me a gorgeous grin and we said hello to each other. He guided me to a boardroom in the back and again, I was in awe, but tried my best to maintain a mature and professional level of composure. We chatted casually at first about where I went to school, which then led to me taking out my portfolio and I began talking through each of my pieces.

He patiently listened and seemed interested as I was talking. Following this, he gave me his feedback about each of my pieces. One at a time, in great detail. His ideas were brilliant and I was absorbing every word he had to say. I ultimately convinced myself, “he can’t be gay… at least in my mind he wasn’t”. An hour and a half later (which went by too fast) we said goodbye. I told him I would keep in touch and hopefully he would keep me in mind for any new opportunities at the agency.

So to answer my blog title question… is it okay to mix work and pleasure? Well for me it wasn’t so much work as it was gaining real world experience in my profession. Still, I believe it’s okay to mix in a bit of pleasure as long as it’s appropriate and doesn’t distract you from your daily tasks and objectives. I think everyone is entitled to a bit of fantasy… no matter which environment you are in. Thoughts?

What’s a girl to do in order to find a nice guy?

So a really good friend and I (who is one of the few remaining singles other than myself that I know) decided to go bar hopping last night in my area. There were no high expectations set other than to have a good time and hopefully have some nice eye candy.

I think the problem for us was we started our mission really early. The first bar we went to we got there at 8:45pm. Hardly anyone was there other than a group of what looked like 40 year olds with bald spots and sketchy biker jackets. There was also a group of young adults who looked about our age but they were all hovered around a table ordering drinks. So my friend and I ordered drinks ourselves and were anticipatingly awaiting the live DJ who would begin at 10. I eyed one of the bartenders who had spiked hair and a red vest. He was cute but I presumed was a bit of a player as all the waitress’s/ female bartenders kept flirting with him and it was obvious he was flirting back. I’m telling you we were laughing with our drinks in hand looking at the one female waitress/ bartender who was only wearing a mini skirt and a bandeau. It was in our opinion completely ridiculous to be wearing this while there was a freezing cold snow storm outside. 9:30 we pay for our drinks and play some air hockey. Only a few more people have trickled in by 10pm, there is no real ‘live DJ’, and the crowd stays pretty sketchy so we decide to venture to bar #2 just down the street.

We show our IDs, walk in and 2 minutes later walk out. I was pretty much disgusted as while the bouncer at the door was checking my ID some older guy who looked in his 40s put his arm around me for a few seconds as he walked through the doors right past the bouncer. We looked around and the crowd was even older than bar #1. So we decided to go back to bar #1. 10:30pm it’s pretty packed and the music is blaring yet the crowd is just not our cup of tea. Not a lot of people our age. So we call it a night.

So we probably didn’t go to the best bars in the area but q – what would people say are the best bars to mingle with other singles in their early to mid 20s in Toronto or any geographic region for that matter? If not a bar – where does an attractive, intelligent gal like myself meet my dream guy? I’m curious.

“The Game” + The Dating Age Gap Follow-up

I understand the ‘game’ is one thing. You know.. when you go out on a date with a guy – you hit it off. Then it’s all about who will contact who first. You keep it casual waiting to hear from the other, but once a day or two has passed and still no response you make the first move. You don’t appear too eager at first – guys and girls both like the chase whether you like it or not.

So I want to update all of you on the 25 year old guy I’ve been talking to. For those who didn’t read ‘the dating age gap’ post – I pretty much have been talking to him for over a week (we’ve been texting – I guess you can go by ‘the game’ standards). We’d wait a few hours in between writing back and forth at first, and as we became more comfortable talking to one another it became less of a game and more of a conversation that got me seriously thinking I was really starting to like him. I’d been wanting to speak on the phone for awhile, but I was waiting for him to make the first call. So it had been 2 days since I last heard from him.. and I suspected something was up. I think for anyone going from talking every day to hearing nothing would raise somewhat of a concern flag. I was planning to write to him tonight when I receive a text message after dinner stating “I’ve been thinking that the age gap between us is too wide. You seem like a sweet and good person, and you deserve better than to have me waste any more of your time.”

He told me he went to a bar last Friday so I presume he may have met someone. Unless he was being truthful – although it doesn’t make sense after having talked for so long knowing each others age at the very beginning. Of course it stings.. especially since I did make an effort to get together over the weekend yet he said he was too busy and suggested maybe the following. Point blank – I really dislike guys who lead girls on like that. ‘The game’ is one thing – but he had known my age for over a week and the fact that he led me on through flirtatious text messaging is unfair. I mean – like him telling me, I wrote on my blog about how I was unsure of the 5 year age gap. I think though it really is about the connection you build with someone. Of course, there should be a cut off – at least at my age.

Now the only thing I can think of is we did add each other on Facebook a few days prior to the weekend. Did he maybe see images that made me appear too young? Was adding him on Facebook a bad move? Personally, I feel you can tell a lot about someone based on how they post their status updates and post on their friends wall etc. OR is it more so not fair for him to prejudge me based on my age when he hasn’t even met up with me. Thoughts?