Friday, September 25, 2009

The Middle and The End

Ok. Where were we? Ah, the tales of Boy #1. After he molested my face I scurried home and debriefed the date with my roommate and closest friends. They all screamed, squealed, laughed and mostly responded, "oh nOOO!", when I told them about the end of the date. Overall consensus from my friends? Do not date him. But either I'm glutton for punishment or simply have a hard time saying no (which is evidenced by the fact that I literally let him kiss me merely because I didn't want to hurt his feeling), because I somehow ended up on a second date with him.

He text me the day after our first date; I hesitated about responding because I wasn't sure if I was going to go out with him again. I text back nonchalantly. He emailed the next day. I did not respond. Then I left for a 10 day vacation.

I vowed to keep my blackberry off; I was not successful. I turned on my phone and there was a text from him! Again, I didn't respond. He emailed me the day before I was supposed to return home....I waited, and then responded. Since a good two weeks had passed since our first date, I must have blocked out all the bad stuff because I agreed to meet up with him for a lunch date.

I figured that a lunch date would be best because there was a definitive start and end, and there would be no (hopefully) awkward kissing at the end. (Can you sense the foreshadowing here?) I told him to meet me at my office at noon and we'd go somewhere close. I made an appointment to give blood at 1 p.m. and asked a coworker/friend to meet me in order to, again, avoid any awkward PDA.

He walked up, tried to kiss me front of my office building....during the work day. I deflected to the cheek and hugged him. We went to lunch and conversation was fine, but nothing remarkable. I started to feel like I could say anything and it wouldn't matter. He was staring at me like a magpie stares at sparkle-y things. Our hour ended and we walked back to my building so I could give blood. My coworker/friend arrived and as I went to say good bye....his face came towards mine again. Really? REALLY?!

I seriously was feeling some disbelief. I didn't let him kiss me hello, so what made him think I was going to let him kiss me good-bye in front of my coworker?? Again, I deflected but he kinda tried to move his mouth over mine. Clearly this boy wasn't reading my body language very well.

Now it was his turn to leave for a week. Unlike our time apart where he continually contacted me, I did not contact him. I realize while typing this that clearly I didn't have enough interest in this boy. So you may be wondering why I continued to date him..... Well. I believe that chemistry can build. And he was sweet! And. Well. He Liked me. Clearly.

He returns from his sojourn and I asked him to hang in my neighborhood. I figured that maybe we needed some time to just "hang". Some no-pressure, not date-y type time. I asked him to come to Queens (realizing later how this might be construed).

He arrived with flowers. Very sweet. And here is where I will elicit your judgement. They were ugly. It was akin to a $2 bouquet. One carnation and some dyed daisies. And I KNOW how this sounds. It makes me sound stuck up and ungrateful. I'm just trying to be honest here - and here's the thing; if I really liked this boy, I would have (probably?) thought they were the best flowers ever! But in the moment I thought, um, if we're in the woo-ing stage and this is all you're bringing to the table, where does it go from here?

We ate. We conversed. Again, I was not impressed by anything coming out of his mouth. You know that feeling you get when you're talking to an eight year old and they're telling you about their friend Jimmy's pet frog and you don't really care about the frog or the story, but they're so excited that you're happy to listen? That's what talking to him was like.

After an hour and a half I was already thinking up reasons to tell him he had to go. We decided to walk around the neighborhood and as we left the apartment, he didn't reach to bring his manbag with him. I thought, great, crap, now we're going to have to come BACK to the apartment!! Grr. (again, not a good sign).

We walked around for around an hour, no magic, no sparks. I told him I had plans that evening and had to start getting ready soon. Hint hint. I think he took that hint to mean, let's go into Manhattan together. Either that or why don't you hang here while I get ready? Um, not what I meant.

Back at the apartment I gave him the "it's time for you to go" stance. He wanted to make out. So I made rambling conversation. I tend to get a bad case of verbal vomit when I'm nervous. Well, I'm pretty verbose to begin with, but it gets worse when I'm nervous. Much worse. He tried to make plans to see me again and I start rambling on and on about what I've got going on and he's staring at me with this puppy dog look on his face that's screaming, why are you blowing me off?

So I tell him I'll be in touch tomorrow to let him know what my week is looking like. He goes to kiss me again. And licks my face. Chin to nose, licks me, trying to gain entrance. I think he was never told that it's lips first, then tongue. I pull back, and make things wonderfully, horribly awkward. I tell him that I just, I, um, I (clasp hands) need some....time.

He responds, I can wait....
Crap. He thinks I mean something else. Why do I do this to myself?!
So he goes for the door, I thank him for coming out to Queens, I thank him for the flowers. And then because I'm the queen of mixed signals, I kiss him good-bye. But I felt badly! He just looked so downtrodden.....

After much thought and insight from the two other ladies on this blog, I realize that if I really truly liked him, I'd be making time for him in my schedule and that perhaps the only thing I liked about him, was that HE liked me. True. Nail to the heart. I needed to end this.

So I bite the bullet and send him an email the next day. An honest email. I say that I realized that if I felt differently about him, that I'd be clearing my schedule to see him and that he was too sweet of a guy for me to set false expectations. That it'd been nice getting to know him and that I hoped he finds what he's looking for.

He emails back immediately saying that he'd be lying if he didn't tell me he was starting to feel the same way, wondering why I wasn't making time for him. That he, too, wished the best for me and hoped I would find what I was looking for.

And that's exactly why I dated him for as many times as I did. He was sweet. A really nice, sweet guy. He'd be the perfect boyfriend; always there for you, gives you space when you need it, doesn't wait to call/text/email, doesn't play games. But you have to account for chemistry, of which we had none. And that, is the bottom line. Chemistry can make you overlook a closet full of flaws, imperfections and annoyances. Chemistry is what makes bad relationships hard to walk away from and takes good relationships to the horizon. But, without chemistry all you're left with is a face licker and sad flowers.

Recipe: Molten Chocolate Cake
note: Use bittersweet chocolate. Cake is bittersweet and looks delicious, but when you bite into it, all you'll find is wetness.

1/2 cup (113 grams) unsalted butter, cut into pieces

6 ounces (170 grams) semi sweet or bittersweet chocolate, cut into small pieces

3 large eggs, separated

1/3 cup (65 grams) granulated white sugar

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar

1 tablespoon (15 grams) granulated white sugar

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C) and place rack in center of oven. Generously butter 4 - 3/4 cup (180 ml) molds, ramekins, or custard cups and dust the insides with granulated white sugar. Place the prepared molds on a baking sheet and set aside while you make the cake batter.

In a stainless steel bowl suspended over a saucepan of simmering water, melt the butter and chocolate. Remove from heat and set aside while you whip the egg yolks.

In your electric mixer beat the egg yolks and 1/3 cup (65 grams) sugar untilthick, pale, and fluffy. (When you slowly raise the beaters the batter will fall back into the bowl in slow ribbons.) Beat in the vanilla extract and then fold in the melted chocolate mixture.

In another clean bowl whip the egg whites until frothy. Add the cream of tartar and continue to whip until soft peaks form. Gradually add the 1 tablespoon of granulated white sugar and whip until stiff peaks form. With a rubber spatula or wire whisk gently fold the beaten whites into the chocolate mixture, just until incorporated. Do not over mix or the batter will deflate. Divide the batter between the prepared molds, filling each about 3/4 full. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes or until the outside edges of the cakes are set but the middle still looks a little wet and wobbly. You may have cracks on the top surface of the cakes.

Immediately remove from oven and let them rest for a minute or two. Run a palette or sharp knife around the edge of each cake and then invert onto the center of each serving plate. Carefully remove the mold. Sprinkle the top of each cake with confectioners sugar and place a dollop of softly whipped cream, clotted cream, creme fraiche, or vanilla ice cream on top of each warm cake.

Note: You can prepare the batter several hours ahead of time. Simply make the recipe, pour into the prepared molds, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate. Bake just before serving. When the batter is cold the cakes may take a minute or two longer to bake.

Makes 4 - 3/4 cup (180 ml) individual cakes.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

PDA: When is it Appropriate?

I'll give eharmony credit; both boys the site matched me up with I found myself compatible with. But chemistry there was not. Here is the story of Boy #1, (which I mentioned in my initial blog about online dating).

B#1 and I were matched in the beginning of July and went through the communication stages very quickly. I liked his profile but didn't love his pictures, but had previously decided to keep an open mind. He was funny, the emails were long. He offered up his personal email address, I offered up mine. A few days later he gave me his phone number, I asked if he wanted to meet. He did; enthusiastically.

We decided to meet for dinner on a Monday. I told him I worked in Midtown East, he chose two restaurants in my neighborhood. So, he was funny AND considerate! Bonus. He made reservations for 6:15 and asked if I wanted to meet for drinks before dinner? That seemed okay with me; I thought it was a good sign that he thought we had enough to talk about to do drinks AND dinner.

The day of the first date arrived. I stood there waiting for him, and around the corner he comes. I'll admit it, I was slightly disappointed in what was grinning back at me. But! I'm a big supporter in letting chemistry and attraction build and I liked what he put on the table thus far, the date had begun, so I settled in for the evening. When we moved from drinks to dinner, it started to rain and I of course did not have an umbrella. He pulls his out and covers me with it....funny, considerate AND a gentlemen!

We eat dinner, conversation is fine but I'm looking at him thinking: do I want to kiss this guy at the end of the evening? Hmm....err, I....dont....think I do. Dinner ends and he asks what I'm doing, he's having a good time, do I want to get a drink? At this point I could have taken or left the drink, but because I have a difficult time saying no, I say yes. We head over to a pub I frequent after work.

We get some beers, continue our conversation. Drink our beers, I say it's time to head out. As we walk to Grand Central he tries to set up plans to see me again this week before I leave for vacation but I felt like two dates in one week was too much, so I make excuses. We walk down to the subway...and this next part happens so quickly.....

I'm pointing to the entrance to the 7 Train saying, "well, that's me...."
He's saying, "please let's do this again", and then his face is coming towards mine....and I'm thinking, okay, a kiss is fine....and then his tongue is in my mouth....!!
I pull back and he says, "please...?" and again I don't know how to say no, so then I'm letting him kiss me. In public. In Grand Central Station. For an extended period of time. And it's not good.

He's jabbing my mouth with his tongue and then the internal monologue starts; "oh my god! I am making out in Grand Central Station! In the subway! Where everyone can see me! OH MY GOD I am THAT girl!! ....jesus, this dude is going to kiss me for as long as I let him."

So I pull back and he says, "let's do this again, please...."
I say good-night and scurry away....then I wipe my chin three times because there is slobber on it.

Now what do I do?? The date was fine except for the last 10 minutes....I would definitely had said yes to a second date but now wasn't so sure....what happened in the subway was, for me, on the aggressive side and the desperation on his face when he said please was.....kinda concerning.

Plus side: sweet, funny, considerate, gentlemen (strike that, after the tongue-rape, not so much). Con side: potentially too horny for his own good, lack of chemistry.

And so ends my first date with B#1.

Recipe: Beef Tongue
It's expensive, but there are no bones - it's all meat.

1 (2-3 lb) beef tongue
1/4 tsp. oregano
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. marjoram
1/4. tsp summer savory

Rinse tongue. Place in pressure cooker. Add water to cover. Add the remaining ingredients. Pressure cook 1 hour at 10 or 15 pounds. Remove from pan and allow to cool enough to handle. Remove connective tissues and skin. The skin should come off easily. Cut into 1/4 inch slices across it's length. At this point, the meat can be used as you desire.