It’s been a while but it’s summer in the city and I’m back! If you’re new here, welcome! Get your bearings here or just dive straight in.
I hope you’re all real well.
It’s good to be back.
Yesterday’s dates began with riding my bike in the heat around the corner to a date at The Great Northern hotel with a man I met on OKCupid. We had a 94% match and had hiking profile pictures. Similar level of education. Looks good on paper.
The thing with chemistry is you know of its existence or lack thereof within 3 seconds of meeting someone face to face, in real life, in the flesh. I’m sure it’s a chemical thing. If it ain’t there then the banter had better be good and the moves had better be smooth. Confidence and quick wit can go a long way.
So as I walk into the pub and scan the faces, looking for someone who also looks like they’re looking for someone, my heart drops a little when a bearded man waves. It only drops a little though, and looks forward to lifting. For the next hour and a half it will try its damnedest to looks for reasons to lift.
He bakes: lift! He’s a playwright: lift! He WAS a playwright and then gave up ‘the arts thing’ for a job at the immigration department that he ‘just fell into with a whole lot of other smart but lazy people who couldn’t be bothered to find something else’…. sink.
I use my latest line: ‘I’m just going to check the time because I said I’d meet some friends of mine… oh crikey in half an hour! I’d better head off but thanks for the soda!’
I ride home and check my phone. A babin’ carpenter on the soon-to-be-deleted Plenty of Fish app has invited me to the night markets. POF has no percentage match function and I have little in common with this bloke but he has a winning grin in his pictures and I want company at this gig. So I convince him to come to a storytelling gig instead at Buck Mulligans, an Irish Whiskey bar in Northcote.
A dear friend introduced me to Mulligans in winter when the fireplace was roaring and cosy nooks were aplenty. It’s a different vibe tonight, with a PA set up and everyone respectfully listening to cute anecdotes about Christmas. This ain’t no Moth, but there’s nice lighting.
I’m standing near a bookcase scanning the crowd when in from the beer garden wanders a man with a winning grin. I use another new line that seems to work when I can’t remember the name of who I’m meeting or if I can’t match their face to their photos, ‘Are you who I’m looking for?’
He’s a babe.
The heart soars.
We sit close.
It’s there. The easy laughs. The conversation that flows effortlessly without the need for questions about our jobs or families or Christmas plans. The strong desire to reach out and touch his face. The feeling when our hands brush as we share a whiskey, or when my his knee touches my thigh under the table.
At about 11 I tell him I’m going to see Star Wars at midnight with my housemate (who is now really my friend). I offer him a lift to North Melbourne, or halfway there, and we start wandering to my car. I really want to pash this guy. When I’m about ten metres from my car I check my phone. It’s 11.27! I told my housemate I’d pick her up at 11.30! I panic. I rescind my offer to give him a lift, give him a quick hug and a kiss on the cheek and race to my car, firing off an apologetic ‘I’m on my way’ message to my friend.
When I get to my house I send him an apologetic message, “Things I should have done: 1/ given you a lift halfway and 2/ kissed you goodbye properly.” As we drive to the movies my mate wonders if it’s like Murphy’s Law. Maybe the best way to get a hot date who you want to pash is to organise an activity afterwards that could prevent you from pashing on.
By the time we get to the cinema he hasn’t replied to my text. Did I screw this up? These doubts fade as Star Wars excitement build. Popcorn! Peanut M&Ms! Being at the mall at midnight! Reclining cinema seats! Adam from girls! Carrie Fisher! Intergalactic shoot em ups! Light sabre fights!
As the credits roll I check my phone. “Enjoy the movie. We’ll kiss properly next time.”