Not to completely gross you out with sentimentality, but nine years ago today, my husband, Brian, and I went on our third date in two days. It’s a significant date to remember, because it’s the one where I almost completely blew it, when things were going so well.
I wasn’t used to going out with nice guys, nor guys who were direct about being interested. In most of my past experiences, the guys were kind of passive, and afraid of commitment, or maybe they just weren’t that into me. But in any case, there was a great deal of mental gymnastics required in order to figure out whether the dude of the moment wanted to see me, a lot of “I’m doing X tonight…you’re welcome to join me…if you want,” rather than what I was getting from Brian: “I know we had two dates yesterday, but I really want to see you again, so are you free for dinner tonight?”
We went out to dinner that night. We sat at the bar at some cute place on Avenue B that no longer exists, and after our knees accidentally rubbed together, we made them do that on purpose.
Afterward, he invited me up to his place on the corner Avenue B and 8th Street ostensibly so he could loan me a particular tape he’d mentioned over dinner. When we got upstairs, I couldn’t believe what I saw. It was this cavernous, if run-down, loft with these beautiful archways and other old architectural details. It was a duplex with three bedrooms, right on Tompkins Square Park.
Nice guy. Smart. Funny. Cute. Into me. Great real estate. This is too good to be true, I thought, and started to panic.
When Brian offered to take my coat, I thought better of it. I did not trust that this could possibly work out for me. “Thanks for the tape,” I said, grabbing it. Then I turned and, in an attempt to do some kind of Rules thing, left, kind of abruptly.
When he didn’t call for two days after that, I was sure my instincts had been right - things never would have worked out. But then he did call. And he asked if he’d done something wrong. And he said he’d been wondering for 72 hours, when he hadn’t heard from me either, whether I was giving him the signal that he should just leave me alone.
Fortunately, I’d had it - and Brian - all wrong. I am really lucky he gave me another try! I moved into that apartment with him a few short months later, and it was really neat living in a huge, bohemian loft for a couple of years. And then we got kicked out of it, but that’s a whole other story.