Wait. Was That A Date?

I’m awkward.

I have no problem admitting that. I’ve even spoken about it on this blog before when I admitted I don’t like to compliment people because they may – somehow in my crazy mind – take it the wrong way.

I don’t know why this is a thing but it is.

It has always caused issues is my dating life because asking someone on a date is the ultimate compliment – I think you can see the flaw in my irrational behavior. When you ask someone out you’re essentially saying, “everything I know about you to this point makes me believe that we should stare at each other awkwardly while trying to search for topics to talk about that will eventually lead to marriage and, possibly, procreation.”

At least that’s my interpretation.

There are many times in my life, that I’m currently going through in my mind, that I’m still not sure if it was a date or not. Sometimes it was a movie, sometimes it was a group thing, sometimes it was just driving around in a car, sometimes it was just going for a walk and talking, but I still no idea what was going through their heads.

If I suddenly realized it was a date it would go south immediately. I feel like I was wired like an old wooden cabin with shoddy electricity that would burn to flames any time there was even a hint of me being in a situation that may involve some kind of romantic intention.

There were a few moments in college where events like the above took place.

1. Once a girl came to my dorm room window where my friend and I were watching TV in the common room and said “you’re hot.” Since things like this LITERALLY NEVER happen to me, I said to my friend, “it’s for you.” The girl – who was VERY intoxicated at the time – assured me I was the one she was talking about. About two minutes later there was a knock at my door and it was “window girl” or, as she was known in my head, “hot guitar girl.” I’m not one to kiss and tell about what happened when she entered my bedroom which is exactly why I can tell you what happened. We talked for a little bit and we both expressed a mutual attraction that may, eventually, lead to spending some time together when she was not so inebriated. We continued corresponding for some time but it eventually fizzled out when I came back to an instant message that read, “hey, what’s Steve’s number?”

2. There was a girl I was interested in for quite some time and I couldn’t find the courage to make a move or formally ask her out. I wasn’t sure if I was reading the signals correct or not, which has always been a problem. To me wanting to hang out one-on-one all the time, constantly texting and discussing feelings wasn’t enough of a clue that maybe this girl felt the same way as I did. We would spend countless hours with each other walking around campus, drinking coffee, watching movies, doing that weird cuddling where you’re both laying in bed but not trying to touch one another, it was essentially torture for me – and possibly her. One night we left my dorm room, which I shared with five other guys, to the sounds of childlike giggling mixed in with some “ooohhhsss” and “aaahhhsss.” As we walked up the hill toward her dorm room I wanted to make a move. Hold her hand. Move in for the kiss. But I just stood there awkwardly for a moment until she said, “well, good night.” And then we hugged and that was it. I walked away from that interaction like a heartbroken man in a movie from the 50’s, I even leaned on a lamppost for full effect. I arrived back at my dorm room to the inquisitive looks of my roommates only to leave them deflated when I admitted nothing had transpired. Their reaction was a clear indication they they, too, felt that I should’ve made a move. A few days later I came back from class to an instant message that read, “hey, is John dating anyone?”

3. I had a good relationship with a girl for a good amount of time. The first time we met we danced all night at a house party and left it at that. We crossed paths many times after that night and started to develop a friendship that continued to solidify itself in our daily lives through talks, walks, and dorm room visits – it’s like my calling card apparently. We would spend a lot of time with one another, bonding over our favorite bands, foods, and parties we would attend in Oneonta, New York. One night we decided to go to a movie together, alone. I had a car so the likelihood of us running into anyone on public transportation and having them tag along was low. We arrived at the theater early and took our seats. We sat close sending – possibly – flirtatious vibes between us and once the movie started we would whisper insights that would make us giggle – we had our own inside jokes. The film plowed on and was uneventful, I wasn’t properly trained on how to make a move at a movie theater, plus I ran the risk that she was enjoying the movie and didn’t want my face blocking the screen. The movie ended and we made the long walk to my car, drove back to campus, while still having a warm feeling in my body that this was going great. We got back to my room and continued talking. Eventually she decided it was time for her to go back to her room so I walked her to the door. “Well, good night,” she said with a smile and we hugged. As she walked through the door frame and entered the hallway she turned around and stood there for a moment and I can’t help but think she wanted something more, maybe this was my opportunity to make a move and I did finally make a definitive move…I closed the door in her face and any possibility of a romantic relationship. She didn’t contact any of my friends but I can’t help but think she thought what I have for so many years.

“Wait. Was that a date?”

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