Love at First Text?
In Jordan’s first message to me, he mentioned how he too loved The Wheel of Time (fantasy book series) and Muse (band). Pretty soon, we were comparing favorite characters and songs, sharing anecdotes of our geekiest encounters, and even listing our favorite snacks. It was one of those conversations that left me feeling like I’ve known the person I was talking to for a very long time. It was refreshing how intelligent, amusing and wittily flirtatious Jordan’s messages were, especially amidst the deluge of vaguely sexist “sup baby” messages littering my Zoosk inbox. In no time at all, I found myself impatiently refreshing my messages, eagerly anticipating Jordan’s next reply.
Though the prospect of a first date with a virtual stranger is usually stressful to me, I felt no dread whatsoever when Jordan asked me out “for a drink.” In fact, I felt a jittery sense of optimism.
Since my date with Jordan, I’ve been wondering exactly what a person means when they invite another out “for a drink.” Of course, I understand the literal meaning of the term: the consumption of a beverage, usually alcoholic. My question is more concerned with the quantitative value behind “a drink,” especially in the context of first-date etiquette. In other words, when it comes to first dates, how many drinks are too many? Is it more about the number of drinks or the drink-to-time-span ratio?
More Dining, Less Wining
My date with Jordan got off to a great start. He greeted me with a friendly hug despite the fact that I was fifteen minutes late, and he had a relaxed surfer-vibe about him that put me instantly at ease. We picked out cocktails for each other, and Jordan told me about the strangest things he has witnessed in his job as a Blackjack dealer. I found myself laughing harder than I ever have on a first date, and if you’d have asked me at the time, I would have expressed absolute certainty about my willingness to go on a second date.
It was about halfway through our meal that I noticed Jordan’s voice was getting a wee bit too loud, his laugh a little too boisterous. At first, I wrote it off as me mentally nitpicking as I always do, but when I heard Jordan ordering yet another Jack and Coke, I started to suspect that my date was getting drunk…really drunk.
He was. And by the end of our meal, Jordan was ordering drinks at a gradually more frequent pace. My manner grew distant as I searched my head for a polite way of telling him that I was starting to get uncomfortable. Eventually, I gave up and told him I had to get going. He texted me the following day, but I let him know I didn’t think we should go on a second date. He didn’t ask why, so I assume he had an idea.
While the date with Jordan was admittedly a disaster, the knowledge that I can meet someone online whom I can like and have much in common with is a great relief. Here’s hoping that my next match will want to do something other than “grab a drink.”