No prizes there for guessing how it went!
#9 was a product of Tinder again. I wasn’t getting a strong vibe one way or another from him. He seemed like he was in his mid-twenties, maybe 27 at most. (I forget details like age until we meet in person. Sue me.) His English was patchy, which I generally find will indicate some dischord between us. But I’m trying to be less judgy, and he seemed quite chatty, and chat is not the best medium to understand how someone expresses themself, so I said ok, let’s do this.
We plan to meet on Saturday morning for coffee (which I found strange but well to each their own. Later he told me meets girls from the internet in the daytime so they feel safe.) and I pick Hauz Khas Social. What an excellent thing I did, because it was so wonderful that it made up for the date ugh. I got there first, and wandered down the gloomy passageway and stepped into the dark lobby space and was very disappointed. Because hello, all the photos are full of light and air and what is this cave. Only, once I walked further in, I saw how gorgeous the space actually is. As my flatmate puts it, we’re just whores for exposed brick. The wall of windows overlooking the lake, the lovely mismatched furniture, the loft-like ceiling! All wonderful.
One of the waiters came running up to me and I realised that he used to work at 4S Punjabi, my beloved favourite place in the world, so I got the lowdown on what happened there. I chose a central table with 4 big leather wing chairs and sank in happily. Gosh I want those chairs. About 2 minutes after I sat down, someone brought me a glass of water. One hundred points for that! It’s ridiculous how much you have to ask for drinking water these days, and then they bring a glass only for the asker unless you tell them, again, to bring for the table. I looked at the newspaper style menu and took photos while I waited for him to show up, and then just began reading my book. Some time later a guy sits down and I realise it’s my date. Only he looks nothing like his photo. He also looks much older than I expected.
We start chatting and he opens with how he’s walked down from Green Park because he’s a big believer in conservation. He launches into a spiel about how restaurants should not use paper napkins because it damages the environment. I interjected that actually for the restaurant biz washing and sterilising cloth is a greater cost because of water and energy use and the toxic cleaning chemicals they release into the water table. No, no, he insists. It’s easier to wash your napkins. I try to get him to listen but he clearly doesn’t want to, so I sit back and say, ‘Have you worked in the restaurant biz?’ ‘No,’ he replies. ‘Then how do you know this?’ I ask. ‘Oh I was talking about washing my napkins at home, and bringing a napkin to the restaurant.’
I knew right then that this date was doomed. Perhaps it is my own intolerance, but I simply cannot talk to people who must broadcast their beliefs and aren’t really interested in listening to the other person. I proceeded to adopt this behaviour myself, so yeah it wasn’t exactly fun conversation.
This theme of conservation came up often and self-righteously. ‘I walk wherever I can.’ ‘I don’t have a vehicle because it’s bad for the environment.’ And then, I give him a ride to the metro so he can go to Saket. ‘I’m going to book my Bullet,’ he says. By this point I knew better than to engage so I just nodded.
I ordered the Big Apple Breakfast, which was utterly divine and kept me full the rest of the day. I cannot emphasize how awesome it was to me that I ate a diner breakfast in Delhi! Blueberry pancakes included! Social is a great space, really. The music was varied–they actually have a musical menu they put up. The staff were super attentive and friendly. The portions were good, the food was superlative and the prices were normal! Totes. Amaze.
‘It’s very nice that you agreed to give me your number,’ he says. ‘Er.. thanks?’ ‘No actually girls don’t give their numbers. It’s so easy for them to find dates no.’
I must go on a little rant here. I am SO VERY TIRED OF THIS IDIOTIC ATTITUDE THAT MEN SPOUT!!! It’s the same kind of ‘I’ll pretend I have no responsibility here; women are evil’ attitude that created the Friend Zone. The hard, cold facts are that the top 10% (in terms of conventional attractiveness) of both men and women will get nearly any date they want. I find it hard to believe when wildly attractive men are into me, but it hasn’t happened in a long time. The next 40% of men are MUCH more likely to find dates than the next 40% of women. And then it’s back to equal footing for the rest. So stop with this ridiculous narrative about how life is so very hard for you. No, just because you like a girl and she doesn’t want to have sex with you doesn’t make her some manipulative bitch who wants to put you in the friend zone. Just because you ask girls out who are out of your league doesn’t mean that girls have it easy when it comes to finding dates. Okay, okay, I was being mean. Just because girls don’t say yes when you ask them out doesn’t mean they have it easier than you.
He also babbled on about how it’s not fair that guys have to do the asking. I agree. This is unfair. But then, as a girl who often asks guys out, believe me it’s not like you are all going to come running and say yes either. So can we all just accept that life is shitty and sometimes–okay very often–we like people who don’t like us back, and it feels crappy to be rejected but that is not just cause to make a whole hullabaloo about how we are so wronged on either size of the gender divide?
As you can see, the date just made me ranty and cranky and desperate to leave. Which we did, eventually. Damn you full plate…