Because, apparently I do.
In most situations I act like the confident, well-adjusted, well-spoken adult that I know I am. I get excited by the prospect of meeting & getting to know new people, I can network and elevator pitch like a pro, and after almost two full months of trying this online dating thing, I can confidently say that I’m a good date. With the exception of that time I blurted out that I used to ghost-write erotic fiction and called a guy out for dressing like Patrick Bateman, I generally don’t get nervous talking to guys or going on dates. I’ve been single for a year and between my various (brief) romances with guys like Handsome Guy, LA Guy, The Chef, The Sexy Russian and several dates from Plenty of Fish – I’ve been able to ease myself back into the single life and get some practice dating.
With the guys I mentioned above, it was easy to keep my composure. I liked them, but also felt like I had nothing to lose therefore, I could just go with the flow. However, as soon as I start to really like someone it’s like I catch a incurable case of Sexually Transmitted Awkwardness. I turn into a bundle of nerves and do stuff that’s so awkward it probably leaves people wondering,
“Is this really the smart and sassy girl I went out with the other night?!”
When I like you, my dating skills become about as smooth as my job interview skills – in other words, not very.
For example, the other day when my date came to pick me up, I went over to his car to open the passenger side. I was tugging on the door handle with no avail. That’s when I heard him call out to me from across the street.
“Um, Simone, I’m over here. That’s not my car”
Sure enough, I was trying break into my neighbour’s SUV. In my defence the cars do look similar, however I should have known the difference considering I walk by my neighbour’s car every day and I’ve been out with this guy 4 times already. My response:
“Oh sorry! I’m really bad with cars. I’m always trying to get into ones I’m not supposed to. I once tried to get into the side of a van even though it didn’t have any doors”
(REALLY SIMONE?! REALLY?!)
I also might have told him that I really liked watching Pretty Little Liars, “Mostly as a guilty pleasure but also for the haircuts. Those girls have really good hair. So yeah, I watch it for hair inspiration. Not that I want my hair to look like a teenager’s or anything”
I’m sure at this point he was thinking “OMG, HOW DOES THIS WOMAN FUNCTION?” and wondering whether I lied about graduating from one of the country’s top universities.
In situations like these I always want to blurt out in total Wayne’s World style,
“I’m not Mental, really! I swear!”
Or just something totally random and unrelated like: “I really like Bartlett Pears!”
Then I spend the rest of the date just praying that they find my awkwardness charming. After all, with the likes of Mindy Kaling and Tina Fey taking the entertainment world by storm, awkwardness is kind of hot these days. Right?! I hope?
The truth is, when I’m hanging out with someone I like, it often feels like I’m just one awkward moment away from going on a full on rant where I blurt out every revealing and embarrassing fact about myself. In my head it sounds a bit like Liz Lemon’s famous confessional from 30 Rock, only with more inappropriate sexual references.
Whenever I hear a story about a guy who swears his secret to keeping his cool on dates is to masturbate beforehand, I always think “That’s gross, but I totally get it!” Although I’m no stranger to DIY orgasms, I think what would actually help me more is a pre-date “verbal purge” which I’m sure would sound something like this:
“Wizards scare me! I collect sock monkeys and I totally hide them whenever you come over! I’m terrible with cars and directions and I’m pretty sure I have a mild case of spatial dyslexia. I’ve been known to come home after a night out and eat a whole package of salami in one sitting. This is why I no longer buy salami. I grew up in a really politically conscious left-wing household, however part of the reason I voted for my city counsellor was because I thought he was hot. When I was 13 I had a crush on Warren Beatty, which I now realize is totally creepy. I once had a sex dream about George Michael that I didn’t want to wake up from. And by George Michael, I mean the openly homosexual singer, not the awkward teenage boy from Arrested Development – because that would just be weird. I’ve never been camping because the idea of peeing outside weirds me out. When I was 16 I accidentally set my hand on fire, not because I was doing something cool and rebellious, but because I was burning the edges of maps with a candle, trying to make them look antique. The most horrible thing I’ve ever done is stand idly by while a Mean Girl made a boy who lived on our street drink a glass of homemade “ice tea” which I’m pretty sure was a mix of apple juice and her own urine. I also have a phobia of fountains that shoot out murky water, boy bands, corporate team building events, apple juice and Richard Simmons’ hair. I write about my vagina on the internet, I hope that’s OK.”
Here’s to hoping that if any of that ever slips out, someone will find it charming.
Does anyone suffer from awkwardness while dating? Please share so we can group hug or something.