Monday, March 22, 2010

Matchmaking 101: Bachelor #2

To better understand the project, it should probably be noted that I have never actually been on a "real" first date.  To be honest, I have a tendency to fall in love with my friends, boys that I've had in my life for years who have slowly become irresistible to me.  This type of situation often lends itself to an incredible build up to the start of a relationship, complete with years of missed opportunities and underlying attraction, but it doesn't often lend itself to dating in the traditional sense.  Perhaps this is one of the reasons I have slight anxiety over the idea of dating someone brand spanking new.

Bachelor #2 was really my premiere first date experience for this project.  Yes, there were drinks with Bachelor #1, but the general feel of the meeting was more that of an interview than an actual date.  Bachelor #2 went a more traditional route: drinks and a show.

For an actress, I have been woefully neglectful when it comes to taking advantage of the Chicago theatre scene.  Therefore, when Bachelor #2 suggested we meet up to see the longest running show in Chicago, I was more than happy to agree.  The great thing about a show date is that it can be a bit of a first date cop-out: if there's no dinner or drinks beforehand, the pressure to interact with one another is limited only to the hour or less between meeting up in line and the show's start.  At first, I was more than willing to use this situation to my advantage and avoid as much awkward chit chat as possible. However, my financial backer and Miss X would have none of my avoidance tactics.  If the point of this project was to meet new people, I would have to carry on an actual in-person conversation with every date.  So I agreed to meet Bachelor #2 for drinks beforehand.

Much like the date with Bachelor #1, there was little difficulty in making conversation with Bachelor #2.  Ironically, having plenty to talk about seems to be one of the benefits of dating strangers.  Questions about family, work, and educational background are all on the agenda, leaving no shortage of conversational material.  I may now know more about Bachelor #2's childhood than that of some of my college friends. After all, I've never thought to ask someone I've known for years how many siblings they have or what their parents are like, but these are perfectly appropriate questions to ask during a date with a stranger.  Bachelor #2 and I even got around to discussing the traditional conversational taboos: politics and religion.  Why? Because we had nothing to lose in doing so.  Had we become repulsed by each other's viewpoints, we could have simply parted ways.  That's another benefit of the date with a stranger: there's very little investment at risk; should things turn sour with disagreement, just walk away.  Thankfully, there was no such conflict that night.

The final verdict on Bachelor #2:  Easy conversation and mutual interests made for a very entertaining evening.
We have tentative plans to see another show mid-week
...take from that what you will.
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