In the past month, I’ve gone on dates with a yogi from Connecticut who showed up in an Indian kurta (despite never having been to India); an Israeli diplomat stationed in Mumbai; a charming and handsome newspaper journalist who, after two dates, told me there wasn’t chemistry between us; and have been stood up for first dates twice by two different people.
It is amazing I had any stamina left to arrange a date with yet another guy last weekend. We met for a hike in the canyon and ended up spending the day together. He was easy to talk to, laid back, and handsome in a Jude-Law-embracing-baldness way. He described himself on his profile as “writer, actor, deadbeat” which sounded vaguely romantic and bohemian, and the reality was that he was a mid-30s floundering actor slash personal assistant slash potentially transitioning into a nursing career. Fine. All the same, I knew he liked me, which felt good as I was reeling from the rejection of the newspaper journalist. A week went by with intermittent textual exchanges and I invited him over again to spend the day by the pool on Saturday.
I’ll put aside that I think it’s slightly bad form to show up to someone’s home, especially on a second date empty handed. I like to host people so I am more than happy to get supply you with food, drink, and weed, but it would have been nice for him to come with a bottle of wine or six-pack since he depleted my stock last weekend.
Much like our first date, we spent the day together, mostly hanging out in my home and doing things couples generally do as opposed to people who just met each other last week, like laying naked together while watching Girls. As we showered together that day, I realized that this domesticity and closeness is what I have been starved for. I drove him back to his apartment that night because his motorcycle had recently been totaled and he had run the 2.5 miles from his home to mine. When we reached his block, we kissed goodbye and he said “See you whenever.” I could call him and he’d probably come as he had accepted my invitation that day, but he would likely not make plans to see me. I suspect he has no money to take me out and therefore feels he has nothing to offer me.
While I am attracted to him physically and feel at ease around him, I’m not sure I want to date someone who is a self-described deadbeat and has twice shown up in cut off jean shorts. If I were in a different financial position and could bankroll someone, I might, but as it is I can barely take care of myself and a dog, let alone another man 10 years older than me. He doesn’t have to be a millionaire, but he should at least be able to pick up the tab every now and again.
Then there’s the successful film director that I’ve been seeing infrequently over the past four months. We had our first date shortly after I moved to Los Angeles but he waited two years to ask me out again, after running into me at the gym. He’s been working non-stop on a movie that’s due out this month and rarely has time to get together, which was consequently his excuse for why he fell off the face of the earth last time.
He is significantly older and a malcontent, beleaguered by the pressures of his work. No matter how many times I have reminded him how lucky he is to be successful at his art, he just huffs and complains about something else. If it’s not the movie studio, it’s the Chinese food delivery guy who didn’t come up the right elevator. I was willing to overlook his constant negativity in favor of his other positive attributes, and felt a genuine attraction to him (success is a powerful aphrodisiac).
The substantial interest I had in him abated when I called him one evening to ascertain where we stood, and he told me that he sensed things wouldn’t work out between us because he likes to have open relationships, especially ones in which strangers come into bed for group fun, and assumed correctly that I wasn’t into that. Also that he is HIV positive. Well, slap me silly and call me Susan.
I have frequent anxiety about dating. I fear that once I begin to wrinkle and my hairline recedes dating will become impossible. While I’m young with a taut body and good complexion, I enjoy a relatively advantageous position. I am turning 25 in a month’s time and worry that I have only five years left to find someone. I can’t lower my standards any lower. If things don’t improve soon, I’m going back on Propecia to forestall hair loss and kill my libido so that I can be both youthful and asexual forever.