22 October 2008

Bachelor #3: This Is What I Expected

Last night I had dinner with a guy to whom I shall grant the name Mr. Nice Guy.

He was, as the name would imply, a nice guy. We had plenty to talk about. He loves eating out and cooking, he's traveled a lot, and he's articulate and well read. He's had a variety of interesting jobs. We have some similar TV and movie tastes. He's close to his family. He's 40, never been married, and works as a computer programmer. He's good looking.

It was a pleasant evening but wow, it was dull. Sparkless. A little flat. And it was exactly the kind of date I expected from my Internet dating experience.

I'm forever trying to not have expectations, but I find it to be nigh impossible not to get sucked in. When I decided to dip my toes into the Internet dating pool, I figured that I'd experience a Dating Bell Curve: a few awful guys, a number of totally fine but not right for me guys, and a few great guys. The law of averages at work, right? So far, I have a very small sample size, but my curve is a flat line: awful (Mr. Tango), fine (Mr. Nice Guy), and great (Mr. Coffee).

To be fair, I suppose it's harsh to rule after one meeting that Mr. Nice Guy is not right for me. And it's not like there was something negative about our evening. It was just boring. After an hour and a half, I was ready to go home and get some sleep.

I try not to do is make comparisons. I've struggled with this a lot since John died. It's so easy for me to start feeling sorry for myself, feel like my life is the hardest life, my situation is the worst situation, woe is me and all that. The truth is that someone always has it better and someone always has it worse. All that matters is that you play the hand you're dealt the best you can.

When I got home last night and was talking about my evening with the friends who watched the twins for me, it was so hard not to compare Mr. Nice Guy to Mr. Coffee even though that's not really fair to do. I've spent more time with Mr. Coffee, I know him better. For all I know, Mr. Nice Guy just needs a few dates to get comfortable and let his guard down (although I didn't get the impression that his guard was up). I tend to give people the benefit of the doubt, and for that reason alone, I feel like I should go out with the guy again to see if I'm still bored or more interested.

But the bottom line is that I don't really want to. I was bored! I could go on a date with Mr. Coffee instead! It didn't help Mr. Nice Guy's situation that I got a lovely e-mail from Mr. Coffee today telling me about his week so far and checking about making weekend plans. I get that flip-flop feeing in my stomach when I see Mr. Coffee's name in my Inbox. When I wake up in the middle of the night, I think about him. I have a voice mail from him saved on my phone so that I can indulge in the Sexy Accent whenever I want. I eagerly anticipate our time together. And I've felt this was since our first coffee meeting.

My first meeting with Mr. Nice Guy didn't give me any of that buzz. The bottom line is that there's no reason not to go on another date with the guy, but there's no compelling reason to go, either. Huh. Mr. Nice Guy did leave the ball in my court with the parting words, "I had a really good time and I'd like to see you again. Let me know what you want to do."

*******************************
Beyond the lack of a spark, two things struck me during my evening with Mr. Nice Guy. First, he was clearly uncomfortable the couple of times the phrase "my late husband" came up. Frankly, who can blame him? My profile states that I'm a widow, but I'm the first to admit that it's an uncomfortable topic even if you know it to be the situation. But Mr. Nice Guy was completely unable to find a way to handle it. It's not that I was testing him; as it would happen, a couple of stories came up during which I, on the fly, couldn't figure out how not to mention John, and so there you go. Not to compare again, but to compare again, Mr. Coffee handled that situation with grace and maturity, which really impressed me.

It was similar when Maddie and Riley came up. Mr. Nice Guy is childless and has never been married. While he was not disinterested in the twins, exactly, he just had no frame of reference for what kids are like. Kids are not his world. They're a huge part of mine. Not sure how that would reconcile.

I don't really like the way this post sounds. I feel like I sound really judgmental. The bottom line is that Mr. Nice Guy really does seem to fit the deep part of the Dating Bell Curve: a fine guy who is not the one for me. Why do I feel a little guilty for saying that?

*******************************
Question for you all: Mr. Nice Guy and I split the check for dinner, which was totally fine with me. I did find it odd, however, that he did not even offer to pay. In my experience, guys on first dates offer to pay, and then argue to varying degrees when I offer to split the tab. There was no offer last night, just a clear expectation that we'd be going Dutch. Again, while the end result is totally fine, does anyone else find it a little ungentlemanly that there was no offer on his part to cover it? Do I just need to get over myself?

82 comments:

Anonymous said...

So he's boring, doesn't know what to do about children, doesn't know how to handle deep things like grief, and he's cheap. Computer programming must really suck the life out of him. He sounds a little like a pair of Payless shoes. Mr. Coffee sounds more fun. I'd stick with him, and keep your eyes open for nice guys with depth, generosity, and a genuine interest in others that leads them to compassionate conversation.

Jul said...

Re: "I sound really judgmental". Aw, babe... YOU TOTALLY SHOULD BE. It's not your job to cut slack or do favors. You deserve to be dazzled, and I don't say this in a rah-rah, you-go-girl, let's-swill-another-pomegranatini way.

Life is meant to be lived with gusto. Romance should be romantic. There's a common belief nowadays (I've labored under it myself - hell, I MARRIED under it myself!) that it's unfair to a "nice guy" to cut him loose solely due to lack of spark. That is as much of a deal-breaker as, oh, I don't know, voting Republican. Flaws beyond someone's control are still flaws.

I've loved the posts about dating again... they've been brave and funny and wickedly honest. Dang it, I am feeling a mite protective. I wouldn't want anyone in your life (or bed... hee!) who didn't make you grin goofily every time you heard their name.

- Jul (who still grins goofily every time {@Boyfriend} walks into the room, even if he happens to be burping "CAN I HAVE A BLOWJOB?" while doing so, as he did five minutes ago.)

Sally said...

Judging is at least half the point of dates. You're supposed to judge him and then act accordingly. If he's not for you, he's not for you. Don't feel obligated to put either of you through another potentially dull date out of guilt. (This is totally selfish, I just really like reading the Mr. Coffee posts!)

Anonymous said...

I really thinks its impossible to be objective in the situation you're in. You've had seven great dates, so it's only natural that you're going to compare/contrast, and frankly, I think it gives you good perspective. Until you (and Mr. Coffee) decide to make this an exclusive relationship, I say keep getting out there, meet new people, and don't feel guilty about your first impressions. Have fun! You deserve it!

ejh345 said...

With a long history of internet dating, I think it's impossible not to be judgemental..that's the whole point, really. I've also been in an ongoing debate w/ one of my girlfriends - she says that you have to give them a few dates to see if it might work, where I'm quite certain that you can tell in the first 10 minutes...chemistry is chemistry, undefinable and unmistakable. I do think it unimpressive that he didn't offer to pay - it's not a RULE, but seriously....on a first date, I really do think they should offer (as should us girls! they should just be more insistent....so un-feminist of me but it's just the way I feel! so there. ;)).

Yankee, Transferred said...

Hey, Snick-I don't think you need to get over yourself, but I also don't think it would be automatically assumed he would pay. But to me, who cares, because if he's like plain white bread, don't waste your time. Sparks are sparks, and I say we all need 'em. Go for Mr. Coffee.

chicklet said...

Most of it I think is "gut" - all "gut". When I met my husband I knew I'd married him (I then questioned how I'd know that and thought I was a freak) but yes, I thought I'd marry him. So I don't think you're judgemental at all. However, on him not offering to pay, that used to piss me off. While I don't think they HAVE to pay, I find it more gentlemanly when they at least offer and let you argue for it. You can still go dutch but they should offer - at least on the first date.

Kerry Lynn said...

*I* think he should have paid.

Anonymous said...

That he didn't offer to pay doesn't mean he's a bad guy. But generally, whoever does the asking usually pays, though it's always nice for the "guest" to *offer* to split it or buy coffee/dessert or whatever. That's how it worked in my internet dating days, anyway.

keen said...

Yeah, I don't like him. See? Now I'm the one being judgmental. And as far as I'm concerned, being bored while on your date is a perfectly legitimate reason to stop at one date.

amber said...

when dating you kind of have to be judgemental. i think first impressions can say a lot about a person and if you're not feeling like you "click" with him, move on. i was actually introduced to two guys right before i started dating the guy who would become my husband -- him and one of his roommates. i felt an automatic connection with my husband, but with the other guy, while he was nice, that was really it. trust your gut, m'dear. :)

as for guys paying on the first date, call me old fashioned, but yeah, i think they should *at least* offer. my CWs and i have discussed this ad nauseum and we all feel the same way. while it wouldn't be a deal breaker in and of itself for me, that coupled with the "meh" first date would be it. but hey, that's just me ;)

Paula said...

If he asked YOU out thenin my book HE should have paid. I don't think you should bother with a second date. Chemistry is either there...or it isn't. Keep enjoying Mr. Coffee!

Anonymous said...

I wasted a lot of time on Mr. Nice Guys...but when I met THE guy, Oooo La La ... don't waste your time. Go for the Gusto Snick.

mlg said...

Clearly the purpose of Mr. Nice Guy is to give you clarity about your feelings/relationship with Mr. Coffee. Give yourself a break. Somewhere, out there, this is a woman who would be over th emoon with Mr. Nice Guy and think that Mr. Coffee was not her cup of tea. That is what this crazy dating thing is all about. No more and no less. We are out there to find the right person for ourselves. Period. Deciding that mr. nice guy isn't right for you doesn't make him bad. It doesn't mark him for life. It just makes him not right for you.

Besides.. how do you know he didn't go home and think, "not bad, but I really don't want to see her again." : )

And, p.s. as someone who has worked with dozens of computer programmers over the span of 15 years, you pretty much hit the nail on the head. Yes, that is a stereotype and there are ones that don't fall into that stereotype, but it does describe the vast majority of the ones I have met. The good news is that there are a lot of women out there who think that that kind of guy (or gal) is the bee's knees and the perfect person to live happily ever after with. Just not you. Move on.

Mr. Coffee 7
everyone else so far 0

Anonymous said...

Men don't pay anymore? When did that happen?

Single Parent Dad said...

I understand the comparison bit, when I think about, or just imagine certain people as girlfriends, I find it hard not to compare them with Sam, my base if you like. People are different and will have strengths/weaknesses etc, but I don't suppose that means you will only 'click' with one, or type of, person. By the sounds of it you're just being polite to Mr Nice Guy, but I wouldn't waste anymore time on him.

And as for paying, the whole dating etiquette scares the **** out of me. In my younger days I definitely would have offered, virtually insisted, but now I don't know.

Diane said...

I don't believe in having the guy pay for the first date, especially with internet dating. It can get expensive fast! Split the check the first time, then whomever asks pays. Besides, if you split the bill, then you don't have to deal with expectations on anyone's part.

My husband and I met through match.com seven and a half years ago. We went on a "drive by" date at Starbucks. We both called them that, interestingly enough. Most people can tell if someone clicks within the first 15 minutes. Don't waste your time on an excruciating dinner date.

He's not the one. Move on to the guy in line behind him. Next!

Roads said...

If the guy asked you out, then agreed - he should pay. But if it's internet dating, then aren't you're both on the hook equally?

If he asks to see you again, then he pays next time, sure.

Why should the guy pay the first time, exactly? What is this - 1854? Don't you hate all that implication of 'money traded for expectation' kind of stuff?

Sheesh. It's hard to be a new man sometimes, Snick.

But all that safely said, I'd still have offered. *Sigh"

Rosepetal said...

It's possible that he picked up on the vibe and figure's he's unlikely to see you again. So didn't offer to pay? I guess I would have reacted the same way as you - I would have noted that he had not offered, but would not have felt like it was my right or anything.

Kim said...

If it were me I wouldn't put myself through that again. I agree that there's got to be some chemistry at the beginning. I had a thought about Mr coffee. You said that none of his serious relationships ever met his daughters. Well, seeing as he has a bedroom and bathroom at his house done up especially for them, I assume they stay there - therefore, it would suggest that he never lived with his serious partners. Is that not a tad unusual?

Anonymous said...

Hmmm... he should have offered to pick up the tab. yeah, not sure that it's a reason not to see him again, but maybe it's the final straw...

Anonymous said...

Hmmmmmm, I think he should have offered to pay. Of course, I have not dated in 14 years, but...he should have offered.
I also think you shouldn't be so hard on yourself. You didn't really feel anything for him so don't go out with him again. When I was dating, I went of with a Mr. Nice Guy (except he paid for dinner ha ha) and while he was very, very nice-there was no spark for me. I saw him a few more times and finally had to let go. I feel bad that I strung him along because he really liked me, but to me he was nice, but not for me. So move on and don't feel guilty.

Pam

Yummy Mummy said...

He totally should have offered to pay. There is nothing worse than being boring and cheap. I don't think you are judgmental after all you have been through you deserve to have your time spent with people you absolutely enjoy. The fact that he is somewhat uncomfortable with A. your kids, B. your late husband; that's the deal breaker. Aren't these the two most important things in your life? Besides the fact that in the end you had to pay to be subjected to that kind of evening. i say ciao.

Tiffi33 said...

I am w/ Diane, paying for every first date would get pricey, and fast.
I think I'd be more offended if he didn't offer to pay on the second date..of course, I haven't dated since I was 17..lmao...so I know nothing...

I say great that he was 'nice' and you had a decent time..but no need for a second if it is going nowhere..KWIM?

Mr Coffee is the bomb chickie!
(and an accent?? how did I miss that he had an accent..oh lord..I am a sucker for an accent...*sigh*)

Donn24g said...

I absolutely agree with most of the other commenter's I skimmed over-- you ABSOLUTELY should be judgmental. This is the one area of your life that judgment is a good thing (and necessary). There are too many stigmas around it and there shouldn't be. (There is a Sex and the City episode about this) too often we come up with excused to get out of second dates-- sometime firsts dates, even casual encounters-- because we feel too bad just saying " I don't like you, I am not interested." We shouldn't be made to feel bad about this, the truth is a good thing. It's when the uninterested party comes up with the transparent excuse and gives us a reason to give the uninterested party a bad name. It is necessary?

Anyway, to go dutch or not? I think it depends on the circumstances. I have no idea how internet dating works; I;ve heard that with some of the match maker networks it is expected to go dutch just to make it easy. I have the mentality that if he asks, he pays. Maybe im old fashion.

Keep us posted about you weekend date with Mr. Coffee!

Arwen said...

Snick, he's 40, good-looking and never been married. (I'm not sure whether he had any LT relationships but it doesn't sound like it.) There is probably a reason for that. I hate to be judgemental too... just trying to be realistic.

As for paying for the first date, he is of the generation that should still feel obligated to pay. I've been on lots of dates and internet dates (albeit 10 years ago) and although I didn't allow them all to pay for the first date, EVERYONE I ever dated OFFERED to pay for the first date. It just confirms to me that there is a reason he is unmarried at 40. (As for the paying for first dates is expensive issue, he's a computer programmer, unmarried and 40... expense should be no problem. My brother is 27, a computer programmer and unmarried... and he is very well off AND he ALWAYS pays for the first date.) Paying for the first date isn't a "me Tarzan, you Jane" issue, it is a matter of respect. If you ask someone out, you pay.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Arwin - 40 years old, never married, no experience with children. There's a reason for that.

... leslie

Nancy said...

I only skimmed the comments - sorry if I'm repeating others words. Don't bother with a second date...you'll only waste his time - and yours! Stick with Mr. Coffee and perhaps some others you've found.

As for paying...it's seriously different in the internet world. You may have been the 50th first date he's been on - without ever having a second one - which gets expensive fast. I'd like to think if you have a second one, he'd pay - but he's also put you in a sticky situation...sounds like YOU'D have to contact HIM for a second date - so would that mean you'd have to pay? Don't bother.

Also, I just have to mention this. I was in the grocery store yesterday and heard "Mr. Coffee to the ice cream department" on the loud speaker...totally thought of you and came THIS close to running over to catch a glimpse LOL

Gillian said...

I feel like, as women in our 30s, we can tell in three minutes if it's going anywhere or not. So . . . I'm on Team No-Second-Date.

As for the paying thing - I agree that it probably could get expensive for an internet dating man if he paid for every first date (internet dating usually means some big #s of first dates.) I also agree that "drive by" dating is probably more in order for these type things - again, you'll know in 3 minutes whether chemistry is there, and you can either let a drive by coffee date linger, or cut it off short and not waste time! Have you seen Sleepless in Seattle lately? How about The Big Chill? I am stealing lines from both of those, by the way. Don't want to plagiarize!

Have I mentioned - this is really fun. Thanks for taking us along for the ride!

Me said...

You know, maybe he wasn't feeling it.....I kind of look at it this way:

Well. First of all. I don't do dinner dates as first dates because I don't want to be stuck over dinner with someone boring..so the first date I usually do drinks..and if it goes well, it morphs into dinner anyway...but aside from that, I have been on a few first dates for dinner and honestly, I do expect the guy to offer...I always let the guy pick the restaurant and make it clear that I can go anywhere, doesn't matter to me...so hell, if he picks Grill 23, he better not expect me to pay half! LOL
However...if the date is crap and I am not interested, I actually offer to pay half. 9 out of 10 times the guy says "no way", but at least I am clear in my mind and don't feel awkward when I don't go out with him again.

So bottom line: YES. I do get your point about the gentleman, but maybe he was applying MY rule to himself...he wasn't as much into it himself....*shrug?*

Anonymous said...

If you feel it wasn't there, don't waste your time on a second date. And you don't "need to get over your self" but I don't think that he can be expected to pay. Nice to offer, yes but I think that in 2008 with internet dating, it should always be dutch for the first date.

Mama Mama Quite Contrary said...

First of all, I think you should trust your instincts. If you found him boring on the first date, he probably is!

Secondly, to all the people who seem to think that there must be something wrong with this guy because he is 40 and never married, I'd like to share my experience. My husband was 47 and never married when we met. I kept an open mind and found out that medical school, residency, and a fellowship made dating virtually impossible for him. An early career in Vermont (where I am from and where I know there to be a total lack of suitable single people) exacerbated his problem of finding someone. He finally moved and had some serious relationships but nothing that ever worked out. Ultimately, he was given my number by a friend of a friend, we went out, and by the third date, we knew we would marry (which we did one year later.) He had resigned himself to never having children and we will welcome our second in the spring. Our lesson: don't rule someone out because of age alone.

Now, to going dutch, some of my female friends who have done internet dating believe that the bill should be split evenly to keep everyone on an "equal footing" so to speak. Maybe Mr. Nice Guy falls into this category too.

s_ivan said...

I wouldn't spend too much time thinking about whether you owe it to the cosmos to plan a second encounter with Nice. I was in a similar situation once - had a nice but sparkless date with a woman who was great on paper, friendly, good conversationalist, even funny!, but couldn't relate to my impending urge to have kids - so she fell a little flat of my expectations.

I spent a lot of time thinking about whether I wanted a second date, on the grounds that there wasn't a compelling reason NOT to. And then she beat me to the punch and said, "Look, you're really interested in having a family with kids. I don't think I can relate to that. Good luck." And that was that...
I appreciated her honesty and I was glad she took the initiative to call a spade a spade. I vowed to be able to do the same in the future.

Nice should be spending his time continuing to search for someone who inspires him to be uber-engaging. So should you.

Sandi said...

I think a man who does not offer to pay for the first date is cheap. Period, end of story. He should have paid or offered.

Anonymous said...

Hello - geez, I will say there certainly doesn't have to be something wrong with him just because he is 40 and not married. Not everyone is destined for marriage or children for that matter. However, go with your vibes. No sparkle, no nothing....wouldn't continue it. As far as paying...I don't know....I'm thinking maybe as some have said that internet dating could get expensive if he had to pay for all first dates but I'm old fashion and I would think he would have offered....I would also be hesitant with how he reacted to you mentioning John and your twins. Not a positive for sure.

Have fun w/plan with Mr. Coffee this weekend.

SEC

katia / crazy for trying said...

I did the internet dating thing and I was definitely "old fashioned" when it came to the dinner bill: if the guy didn't pay for the first date then ... buh-bye.
But, that's just me.

Laura c. said...

Personally, Dutch is cool with me. But it sounds like there's no chemistry.

moo said...

I hope you slept with him ;)

Go back to Mr. Coffee. Heck, *I* want to date Mr. Coffee and I'm happily married!

Arwen said...

Mama Mama Quite Contrary... if this guy was a doctor or a lawyer, I would agree with you about the age thing. But he has a job that, at his age, didn't even require him to have a degree when he "should" have started it, now most programmers have at the MOST a 4 year degree. He's a good-looking guy. He didn't go to university for 10 years or have a residency. He has no "too busy to date" excuse. He doesn't have to have something wrong with him... it is just more likely. If he had kept his head stuck in his career until recently, he would have plenty of money so he wouldn't want to be seen as a cheapskate... and I don't care if he's been on 100 first dates this year, not offering to pay makes him a cheapskate. I've been on at least 50 internet dates in my life and ALL of them offered to pay. In return, proper etiquette is for ME to pay for my own food if I'm not going to date him again. The wishy washy "Let me know what you want to do" is either that he's not really that into Snick but figures he'll be "courteous", he's got a serious self-confidence problem OR he's a cheapskate who wants to make sure he isn't stuck with the next bill. I'm voting 2 or 3.

As an aside, my very best friend (other than my DH) who I love lots and lots is 38. Hasn't really dated more than a couple times in his life except one girl at the age of 27. I think he is one of the sweetest, nicest guys in the world. I truly LOVE him. It would take a very special person though to overcome some of his problems though. A woman with two small children shouldn't date someone with these kinds of problems because it isn't fair to them to possibly grow attached to someone who may or may not become attached to them/stick around. I love my friend but he seriously lacks the self-confidence to talk to someone he's interested in, he mostly lives separate from his parents but since his father owns lots of rental property, he lives in one of his father's houses, he's afraid to get close to anyone and is very aloof and can sometimes be perceived as rude. He still hasn't found his groove. He has several different degrees in various (and wildly different) fields yet has yet to get a job in any of those fields. In fact, until recently, he worked for his father as an office manager. It is possible that he will find the right woman for him and settle down happy as a clam. TOTALLY, I agree. I love him and I can see other people could easily love him. He's a GREAT guy BUT he's DEFINITELY NOT the right kind of guy for a woman with two children. Children can be in his future, yes, but I don't see him doing well with step-children. JMHO

DEBRA said...

I have not read all the other comments but my first thought was "NO" you are not being judgemental. Long long ago in a galaxy far far away I did "ad" dating before there was "internet" dating and all the things you mentioned I encountered. I am sorry but I do find it a bit on the cheap side for him not to offer to pick up the complete tab. Single, no children, I mean c'mon....but that's just my opinion, and Snick you didn't sound judgemental at all. In fact I thought you were giving him the biggest benefit of the doubt.

Giovanna Diaries said...

Yeah, I wouldn't bother w/a second date. Save your $! If he can't even compare w/Mr. Coffee...what's the point? Mr. Coffee treats you much better anyways!

Karen said...

I would assume that a first date - especially a first date from a dating site - would be dutch automatically. Sure it would be nice for him to offer, but I don't think he should have to offer

spoiledonlychild said...

If everything else was great, and then he didn't offer to pay, I might overlook it. But to me, that was the final straw. Move on.

Katie said...

The not-offering-to-pay would be a killer for me, unless the rest of the date had just been so completely fabulous that I was willing to overlook it. But I can't even imagine how fabulous it would have to be for me to be willing to overlook it. But I'm Southern that way.

Kerrie said...

If there's no spark, there's no spark...it can't be manufactured or faked. In my early internet dating days I had a date with a particular man and the greatest compliment I could give him was that he was "nice"...how wishy washy was that..??

Agreed with Mama Mama Quite Contrary on those who feel that there may be something "wrong" with this man because he is 40, attractive and never been married...I was in a very similar situation, reasonably well put together, intelligent, good conversationalist, well travelled...all in all, on paper a pretty good offer. I had never been married either but there was nothing "wrong" with me. For most of that time I had raised a child alone and chose not to date as I found it too complicated to be a parent and a partner to someone who was not my child's father. Most people in this situation have a reason...for some, things just don't work out.

As for him paying, I always went on first dates prepared to pay, as someone mentioned, there are no expectations then. However, I always accepted graciously when the man offered, sometimes (depending on how the date had gone) I made the comment that the next time the treat would be on me.

After one disastrous break up with a man I had been seeing for 11 months I decided not to date men who did not have children...it is so hard for them to understand the commitment needed. This man used to get obviously pissed of when I wouldn't drop everything to see him. He became very envious of the time I spent with my daughter but would not include her in our time spent together. The demise of the relationship was triggered when I mentioned that my daughter and I have a girls weekend date to see Cirque du Soleil whenever they were in town (we made a weekend of it, staying in a city hotel etc). He booked two tickets to the show, for him and me, deliberately excluding her. They just (usually) don't get it.

Mr. C. sounds so perfect in comparison...stick with him, see where he takes you...the chemistry is obviously there and so far it's been a damned fine ride. At least from where we sit it has.

Steph said...

Beyond dull, he sounds kind of immature for his age. I mean, not being able to handle when you talk about your late husband, not offering to pay the bill like a gentleman.
There should be a spark right away. You shouldn't have to try to light that fire - it's there or it isn't. Forget Mr. Nice Guy!

Becky said...

Don't bother going out with Mr. Nice Guy again. If there isn't a spark and you thought he was boring, that's not going to change. I think it's a little odd that he didn't offer to pay, yeah. If he was 25, it might be normal, but older guys seem to usually try to pay.

kindsfather said...

Life is too short to spend time trying to like someone. Listen to your heart. Also - although guys shouldn't have to pay, it would have been sweet...just points against him.

Anonymous said...

I know this is going to sound critical of you but you ask for comments, so...it is interesting to me that you raise an eyebrow that he didn't offer to pay (something old-fashioned) yet you slept with Mr. Coffee on your second date (something not old-fashioned). I find that a real contrast to some of your other ideas that you post about yourself. Also, when you are sexually active with one man, how can someone else even stand a chance at a fair shot? Let the arrow shots begin....you ask, I replied.

Snickollet said...

Anon @ 11:21--

Ah, see, if you'll recall, I slept with Mr. Coffee on our THIRD date. I'm quite old-fashioned after all ;).

-snick

Ashley said...

Truth be told, your time is precious. Why waste it going out with Nice Guy again if it makes you wish you were home snuggled up on the couch with a glass of wine instead?? The whole point of the internet/blind date thing is to see who is out there and what works for you. I'm sure you didn't continue to go out with guys who didn't "do it" for you before Jon, so why try that now just so you don't get the guilts?? Silly. Life is short, have fun!

Jenny said...

I have to agree with those that said, He's 40 and not married there is a reason for it. I say don't waste time on Mr. NiceGuy. Rely on your instincts and first impressions!

carosgram said...

The whole point of dating is to make judgements about who you want to spend time with, so don't feel guilty about that. However, yes, you need to get over yourself about splitting the bill. You advertised yourself on the net to meet people. He agreed he wanted to meet you. Mutual date, mutual pay. You don't owe him anything and he doesn't owe you anything. That's the way you want a 'meet date' with someone on the net to be. Good luck and have fun!

Anonymous said...

Just go with what your gut instinct tells you Snick.

I did the internet dating pool thing a few years back and with the third guy I met - - - KABOOM! I knew HE was the one for me and nearly three and a half years later - my Texas Sweetheart still is =)

Monica said...

Couple of things.

I met my guy on match.com (though he lived less than a mile away) about 2 years ago, after many years of match.com dates. In the beginning I was looking for that instant chemistry (a la Mr. Coffee), which had always worked for me in the past - meaning that when I met the men who became my long term relationships, I felt instant chemistry with them. Well, even though I found a few of them (the instant chemistry) on match, they never lasted. When I met Mr. Right, I was not really impressed or excited after the first date, but right at that moment in time, I had decided to try a different approach, and I kept going out with him. It took 3-4 dates before I really got to know him enough to realize that he was not as plain as he seemed - that inside that Mr. Nice Guy exterior, there was a Mr. Coffee. And now we are blending families and living happily. I get a bit scared when I think that I almost did not give him a chance.

Second. I know that I am in the minority and always have been, but I just can not understand why women EXPECT men to pay for them! Especially if we had never met and might never meet again! Really - how weird is that? Especially dinner. For me it was always a negative if they insisted. I am capable, independent and want to pay for myself.

Finally. I was 45 and not married (though I had kids on my own) when I met Mr Right. Please, don't judge him because he is not married, especially if you don't know his relationship history. Though I was never married, I had had 2 relationships that lasted 8-9 years (longer than many marriages), and another two that were 4-5 years. Really, just because someone is not married does not prove them damaged goods.

Phew - after all that - I do want to say, good luck with Mr. Coffee and/or Mr. Next on the List! I would make sure you talk with MR. C aobut what he is really looking for before you get too attached....

Anonymous said...

Am I the only woman who has paid on the first date? I don't mean dutch- I paid the whole dinner tab. He offered to split it, but I didn't want there to be any of the "I paid for dinner, now you have to put out" subtext floating around.
Which in retrospect was kind of silly, as not too long after dinner was our first kiss and WOW! The sparks were flying. By the end of the night we knew our next date would be of the horizontal kind :)
Still and all, I am definitely more comfortable going dutch or paying it all myself than I am having the guy pay.

Crash Course Widow said...

I understand the lack of a spark. I went out on 3 internet dates last year, and there was no spark whatsoever. Aside from one guy who was a bit of an ass--I don't know if he freaked out that I was a widow (I didn't tell him until I was on the date) or more because I'm not working right now at a paying job--and knocked his way through 5 or 6 drinks, the other two were just ho-hum. Not boring exactly, but no spark, no fun zest to make me want to meet them again. It was unfortunate, because I had great fun emailing one of them and he was wonderfully empathetic to my widowhood (and he brought a coloring book for Anna on our "drive-by date"--how sweet!). Great on paper and email, but I think he was quite shy. I knew that he'd probably loosen up after a few dates, but I just wasn't attracted to him...and from a prior relationship I had where I dated a wonderful guy for 8 months but when there was less than zero physical chemistry (although I cared for and love him very much), I've learned that--for me--physical attraction is absolutely a must.

I felt a little weird and guilty last year too, when I was dating my friend (post-widowhood) for about 6 months. Totally nice guy, good sex, fun to hang out with, but I felt bad because simply being a "nice guy" wasn't really enough for me. I needed more than that. Charley had the whole package, and while I don't compare men to him qualitatively, I do compare how **I** felt with him (or to other men I dated in the best phases of the relationships), and all the things that made it work, that made it click. And no, it won't be the same laundry list next successful relationship around, but the sum total has to add up to the same.

Ultimately I want a nice guy to marry. I have no interest in a jerk or a bad boy, so I feel compelled to give the nice guys a longer/better shot...but dang, it sure doesn't make the chemistry come any easier.

Best of luck to you! Hope you get a few more guys who fall on the Mr. Coffee end of the spectrum!

~Candice

Anonymous said...

Ah, but there are reasons not to see him again. Most importantly, you don't want to see him again. Think of the other things you could do with that time! You've given him more than a fair amount of consideration.

To quote Sex and the City: "If it is immediately clear that a[n] [insert job/ date/ potential friend etc.] is not for you . . . . [s]hould we be so quick to judge judgment?"

Jenn said...

Snick-
I maybe repeating the comments here, but my guess is he either picked up the vibe you were not interested, or maybe he mutually felt it, but that's why he split the date, I am almost positive.
As for why he's still single... I know lots of guys who are single until 40, mostly it seems to be the ones who have been so career focus they forget where the time went, or have had one or two bad relationships and shied away for awhile. Not all of them are just boring people. (Sorry, I took a little offense, my hubby is a techie and is the sweetest, most wonderful man I know.)
On the other hand, I agree. My hubby and I knew we were meant to be an were exclusive from date one, which was just supposed to be dinner and ended at 2am after dancing. We met on internet dating too.
In fact, my first hubby and I knew right away too. :)

Anonymous said...

There doesn't have to be anything wrong with him. He doesn't sound right for you. You do not have an obligation to have another date to prove anything. No is a perfectly ok word.

I think the paying thing is rankling 'cause you didn't like him. But I would suggest coffee dates for first dates over dinner - it lowers the obligation level all around.

Anonymous said...

Anon 11:21,
The comment I am about to make is not an arrow shot, I promise, just a sincere answer. In fact, have no problem with people who chose to date only one person at a time, and I even happen to be one of them. But you asked, "When [Snick is] sexually active with one man, how can anyone else expect a chance at a fair shot?"

I know many women, mostly in their late 30s and early 40s, who began dating their now husbands while still dating and having sex with other men. These are healthy, happily married women, and why not?. Bachelors have been meeting their future wives this way for years, and it works. As long as you are being safe and taking care of your own emotional needs of course, dating and having sex with multiple people is not only healthy in and of itself -- it is a healthy way to find someone with whom you might want to get married and have children.

I understnad some people, usually women, are not open to dating in this way. In my humble opinion, these women meet someone whose company they enjoy and with whom they like having sex, and shut themselves off to meeting other people; then, they get hurt. Or, they get married to the enjoyable relationship, when maybe it was never meant to go there. Or, they deny themselves the pleasure of the enjoyable person's company and sex, and the posibility of where that relationship might go given some time, so that they can meet, "the one." For me, even though I have found someone I want to see exclusively, this approach makes little sense.

You asked, and I assumed it was a sincere question :-) Best regards to you.

Anonymous said...

I agree -- Internet meet and greets should be dutch, no polite offers to pay required. If a meet and greet is obviously turning into a first date due to an unstoppable chemistry, ;-) then the offer to pay is nice although I still go dutch.

My bf still offers to pay, although I've never said yes. Maybe I should call his bluff sometime?!

happy4u said...

Don't feel guilty. At our age, we know what we want. I think with you being a parent and him not being a parent, it puts you on 2 different wave lengths, yes there is a reason he is still single at 40. I find the fact that he did not offer to pay a little ungentlemanly (if that is a word) but I think it speaks volumes as to how he handles money - cheap! Don't waste your time with Mr. Nice Guy, espeically if you have to pay a babysitter and for your own dinner - :-)

Lori said...

My 2 cents...life is too short to waste time on "fine" and "boring".

Pantheist Mom said...

Being judgemental implies being unfair and/or close-minded and I don't think you're even close to being either. You thought he was boring - sounds like you're being honest with yourself. You can't MAKE yourself be unbored with him.

Personally, I would not expect a guy to pick up the tab on a date, especially one that comes equally from both parties (i.e. internet dating). For grown ups who both have jobs, presumably, it doesn't seem fair to hang that on the guy just because he's a guy. Just my opinion, though.

Nancy said...

Boring, doesn't "get" what kids are about and doesn't pick up the check on the first date ...

NEXT!

=)

buttercup649 said...

When I did internet dating I liked when a guy would at least offer to pay. I always tried to pay the tip, or bought dessert or something, but I think that it's nice for him to at least make a stab at paying.

I also went on more dates than I should have with a "nice guy," but like you there were not sparks (it took him until the third date to kiss me! And that was only when I initiated it!). I think providing closure is nice though...something like "I had a really nice time meeting you, but I think we can both agree that there weren't really any sparks..."

Good luck with the decision!

Sarah said...

Trust your instincts!

Boring = not worth your time for a second date.

Blah first date never translate into great second ones.

And yes, he should at least have offered to pay.

From... a girl who's been there.

Rev Dr Mom said...

I don't think you sound judgmental. I think you sound realistic. So right now you really like Mr. Coffee, and it's hard NOT to compare. Impossible even. And life is too short to be unnecessarily bored.

Melissa said...

Snick, I once dated a reeeeeally nice guy too. And... I married him. Yawn.

Guess what? We got divorced.

Now I'm re-married, to a man who few would describe as a stereotypical "nice" guy. But he's the one who lifts my skirt, so to speak. ;-)

Nice is totally overrated.

Hugs,
Melissa

Watercolor said...

As a single person who has never been married, it has sometimes been odd when dates mentioned there ex's or late wives. I try never to mention my ex-boyfriends on early dates and some of them I dated longer than some of them were married. I guess with kids it is hard not to mention John, but I don't think it means something is wrong with this date because he was a little uncomfortable at the mention of him at your first meeting.

As for the paying thing, well, if he's doing internet dating, he may have a lot of first meetings and that gets expensive. I always offer to go dutch on the first meeting and rarely actually consider it a date. We are strangers meeting for the first time. It ain't a date. Most pick up the tab but a few agree to dutch. I don't think anything about it. Doesn't mean he's cheap necessarily. Just that he doesn't see the first meeting with a stranger as a date yet.

The boring part, well, follow your gut. I usually do. I had one guy tell me all about his peeing experiences in Iraq when he was deployed there. I wish it was as interestingly weird as that sounds. It was boring as hell. I didn't go out with him again. Then again, another date was very nice but kind of boring but for no real reason I could put my finger on. I went out with him again and we ended up dating about 6 weeks. It ended for other reasons.... So go with your gut.

Watercolor said...

And FYI to some of you, just because someone is 40 and still not married does not mean something is wrong with them! I am and there are lots of reasons for that so don't judge someone just because of that simple fact. Life is complicated and sometimes things and life happens and sometimes you just don't find the one in college like most everyone else does. There are lots of perfectly wonderful people out there who are older who have never been married. It isn't a disease. :)

j said...

I kind of can't believe that in this day and age, people are willing to say a man is a cheapskate if he doesn't pay for the first date, but of course the woman isn't if she doesn't. (I say this as a woman.) Where the heck did equal, non-sexist expectations about being gracious go? I agree that in general, if you ask then you should assume you will pay, but on a first internet date if there is no clear ask-er, I'd be surprised if the bill wasn't split.

Denise said...

Going Dutch is unromantic, but expecting the guy to pay always is a little outdated/sexist. My rule for dates was that SOMEONE should treat, namely the person doing the inviting. In case of an Internet date, I agree that it should be something low-cost--coffee, a drink--so one person could be the treat-er without blowing a whole bunch of cash on a stranger. If he doesn't offer to treat, then you should, just as a social grace.

I was out on a date once with a guy who accepted a DRINK COUPON from one of those college students on the street who drum up business for bars, and then USED IT to buy me a drink. Coupon = turnoff.

Rachel said...

I once went out on a date with a vegan knitter-boy who worked at the Library of Congress, which sounded like a DREAM to this vegan knitter-girl book-nerd.

Alas, I was bored out of my skull.

Some people just look good on paper. That doesn't make you a bad or overly judgemental person for not connecting.

Anonymous said...

Maybe he didn't offer to pay because he was bored, too??? It sounds like you didn't have much in common....maybe not a good fit. I'd move on and not think twice about it.

django's mommy said...

I was honestly shocked that all 3 of my internet first dates (so far) offered and then insisted on paying. Shocked! I thought for sure we would split it. I guess things have changed since I last dated in 1997!

Now, sparks. I have to admit that I had a first date in which I did not feel sparks. But- I was definitely not bored, and hence went out on a second date. And a third. And so on (we may be up to date #10 or so by now?). I could cry thinking about how many spark-filled moments I would have missed if I had not gone on date #2. Lots and lots and lots and lots of sparks. Okay, shutting up now.

But, I think considering that there ARE sparks with Mr. Coffee, why bother with Mr. Nice Guy? And I agree with others who have said it's okay to be judgemental. I mean, we're supposed to be, right?

You're doing great, Snick!

Fairlington Blade said...

I remember a couple of times dating "nice girls". The first was when living in England, fresh off the boat. I met the friend of a friend, liked her and asked her out. We had a great date in the West End of London (translates to Broadway). By the end of the date, we'd run out of things to say to each other. We had a second date which can be summarized as we hadn't figured out anything to say since the first date.

The second was sorta like long distance dating. It was a friend of my sister-in-law. Our first date was a Chiefs game (she's a big fan). The second was her favorite place on the Plaza. They didn't take reservations, so I went down and put our names in (loooong wait on Friday nights at Houstons), drove up and grabbed some flowers and picked up my date. I couldn't do better for romantic. A couple of further dates ensued (word to the wise: check out movies in advance. You do not want to take a good Catholic to a movie where an abortion is the critical plot twist [Cider Rules]). I never had a clue she liked me other than through intermediaries.

So, that's what I think you're facing with Mr. Nice Guy. It might be nice, but never anything more. Cut yourself and him some slack and cut him loose.

Fortunately for me, I met Keen about a year after Mrs. Nice Lady #2 and the rest was history.

BB

Ann said...

I would hope that anyone who would say a person was "cheap" for not offering to pay for a first date would expect the same to be said about them, regardless of their gender. If you "wouldn't go on a second date with a man who didn't offer to pay for the first," then I'm sure you wouldn't want a man to go on a second date with you if you didn't offer to pay for the first, right?

Anonymous said...

I think he should have paid. Forget about all of the rules of dating. His lack of offering to pay gives you a clue about his disposition. It foreshadows more to come in the way of not considering the other person's needs.

Jane said...

If there's no chemistry on the first date, it's hard to believe there'll be any on the second. I say forget it.

As for not offering to pick up the tab, if you'd been dazzled by him and the two of you were having a fabulous time, it might not have even bothered you, right?

Great to finally meet you and Maddie and Riley in the flesh today, BTW! Sorry if I seemed a bit out of it (not that you'd really have a point of reference) but I'm not quite myself at the moment. If you go back and read posts from around March in my blog, you'll get my drift.

Christine said...

Eh...nice guy can go take a hike!