I found Dane on Tinder. His photos were cute: Brown hair, scruffy hipster beard and mustache, piercing blue eyes. Several of his photos showed him at Burning Man, so I knew we had that in common. There was at least a little bit of humor or goofiness in all of his photos, which made his blurb – “I think it’s pretty clear that I’m a button down straight shoot” – simply adorable.
Our conversation was easy and lighthearted, with a little bit of silliness thrown in, which is a great sign. I brought up meeting first, which isn’t unusual, but I do wish the other people I meet online would initiate the offline meeting a little more often. It took a little back and forth, but we finally settled on meeting up late one Monday evening, after I’d finished a meeting for work. I try not to always choose the same meeting place in my own neighborhood, but since my foot is currently strapped into an orthopedic boot due to a really dumb injury, I went with the easy travel option and chose a bar just a few blocks from my house.
I was delighted to see that he was just as attractive offline as his photos suggested. Our greeting had just a smidge of awkwardness, as he went for a hug and I extended my hand for a shake. Not a big deal, though. We chose a table, hung our coats, then walked (or hobbled, in my case) over to the bar. We chatted easily while waiting in line, and continued our conversation back at our table. We mostly talked about our home towns (he’s from Salt Lake City, and yes, he grew up Mormon), work, and Burning Man. There were a couple of moments where I thought we were about to slip into an awkward silence, but we managed to keep the conversation flowing nicely. It’s good to have a few open-ended questions in your back pocked (not literally…or maybe, if you think you might need that) for those lulls in conversation.
At the end of the date we walked out to the sidewalk together and exchanged a friendly hug goodbye. I enjoyed the date, but didn’t yet feel any real chemistry. But I did find him attractive and fun to talk to, so I think there’s potential. Maybe, for our next date, I’ll choose something that encourages a little more physical contact (anything that doesn’t include sitting across from each other at a table) and see if that stirs anything up.