eHarmonize This…

 I call 2008 “The Year I Dated.”  I’d dated before, but in 2008, I dated a lot.  I lost track of how many dates I had and how many guys I went out with.  I dated so much, I got tired of dating.  You married people out there who think it might be better to be single and going out with different people and trying new things, please keep reading… 

In 2008, I also taught a class called Chase the Lion, which teaches that taking risks, trying new things, and not fearing failure are important to our faith.  Many of our Biblical heroes were risk-takers, including Ruth who threw herself at Boaz’ feet and wound up with a rich husband and a famous descendant…  I liked the curriculum (by Mark Batterson) so much that I taught the class about six times over the next two years. 

Around that time I also picked up a book on dating by one of my favorite authors, Henry Cloud.  The basic principle of How to Get a Date Worth Keeping is that singles are afraid to take risks.  We should do everything we can to meet new people and get dates with them, dating basically anyone who asks at least once, and getting out of our comfort zones.  He says it’s a fun social experiment, allows us to gain new experiences, and challenges our preconceived notions of people.  This very godly man challenged singles to go on dating websites, give our numbers to people we meet at social functions, and stop sitting alone at home on Saturday nights crying into our pillows. 

Well, I didn’t often find myself sitting at home alone on Saturday nights (unless I was tired and wanted a break), but I was still single, dateless, and ready to take a risk.  I decided to give his method a try.  I joined eHarmony and and told my friends that I was going to make dating a part-time job.  I asked them to set me up on dates with anyone they knew.  And I got bold about giving my contact information out to anyone who might be a possibility. 

My efforts worked and I soon started dating.  A few of the guys I dated that year stand out to me.  The first one was a really nice, Christian guy who took me out on some amazing dates.  He was a perfect gentleman and I enjoyed his company.  But he didn’t seem to know what he wanted.  At times he’d be very attentive and seem totally interested.  At other times, he pushed me away and acted like a jerk.  Yet he kept asking me out on amazing dates, so I kept going, at one point making a kind of game of it in my mind.  Who would I get that night?  After a couple months of his craziness, I decided I’d had enough.  I missed the fabulous dates, but not the emotional roller coaster! 

Another guy I dated was wealthy and fun, going to great lengths to plan dates around things he knew I would like.  What girl doesn’t like that?  But after going out for a few weeks, he started complaining when I went out with friends instead of seeing him, then told me to change my hairstyle…  He eventually told me I should just quit my job so I could go with him wherever he wanted.  Oh, and I found out he had a bookie and only met when one owed the other a large amount of money.  I decided he wasn’t for me! 

Probably the most memorable date I had that year was with a guy I’ll call “Steve”.  His pictures showed a professional, clean-cut, attractive man.  But right before we met, he texted me to say he was afraid I was better-looking than him and other really insecure things.  Huh?  One of my only requirements during this dating experiment was that a man be reasonably attractive.  He didn’t have to be McDreamy.  My only expectation of him was that he looked like the man in the pictures. 

I drove up to Starbucks and parked next to his car.  I got out of my car and then he got out of his.  As he stood up, I looked down at just the right moment to see him nearly lose his pants.  And he wasn’t wearing anything under them!  Trying not to show my shock and horror, I looked up to see his face.  He was in bad need of a haircut and had a beard.  He walked around his car to greet me and was wearing old jeans and a ratty shirt.  I wasn’t sure if I was meeting the same man I’d met online, pictured in suits and ties. 

We went inside and talked for a few minutes.  His voice was the same and I could see some similarities, but the pictures he posted must have been several years old.  Unable to get the image of his butt from my mind, I was grateful when the barista came over and told us they were closing just 20 minutes after we walked in the door.  He invited me to get a drink at a nearby restaurant and I made up some excuse and got out of there.  I probably would’ve met him anyway if he’d put up accurate pictures, but the fact that he so blatantly misrepresented himself bothered me almost as much as seeing his butt.

Most of the guys I met during my dating experiment were nice, good guys who wanted to get married and have a family.  I was surprised by the number of times they brought up marriage.  But none of them were right for me.  After all that dating, all I felt was tired.  I didn’t feel like I could go out with one more random guy.  I got off the dating websites and started working on become the best person I could be.  I hired a personal trainer and started spending a lot more time on my relationship with God. 

I learned a lot that year.  I got to go to some amazing places I never would’ve gone to any other way.  I met some really interesting people.  I’m glad I did it.  And I’m also glad I didn’t marry any of the guys I dated that year. 

Have any of your dates made the Hall of Fame for worst dates ever?


Filed under Just Goofing Around

17 responses to “eHarmonize This…

  1. Amanda

    Ohhhh, those stories are all too familiar! Worst Date #1: Guy wants me to pick him up at “his house.” His car is “in the shop”. Against my better judgment, I did. He failed to mention he lived with his mother. Not in her basement…in the bedroom beside hers. FAIL.
    Worst Date #2: Guy shows up in a Hawaiian shirt with airplanes all over it, shorts and black shoes with white, calf-length tube socks. Because I like to think I’m a person who values people’s hearts and not their wardrobe, I tried very hard to ignore that. Him spending 2 hours talking about himself without a pause: much harder to ignore. His live-in girlfriend calling me the next day? FAIL.
    Worst Date #3: Guy asks me to dinner, then when the check comes says “Do you mind splitting the tab, I don’t want to break a $50.” EPIC FAIL.

    I enjoy my singledom most days. But the things people say to single gals when they swear they “mean well” is what kills me. This summer while visiting my grandfather, his wife asked if I was dating anyone. I said I wasn’t. She looked at me with deep pity and said, “Well there’s still hope. A girl in our church just got married and (she whispered) she’s THIRTY FIVE!” LOL Apparently, I have 6 more years left before I have a geriatric wedding. 🙂

    • Well, crap! I only have one more year left then… I think I like the socks the best. I don’t think I could’ve ignored that. Katie would’ve told him he had to change his socks before she’d be seen in public with him. 🙂

  2. Renee

    I laughed so hard reading this, mainly beacuse I remember all of the guys you are talking about. I too am thankful that you did not marry any of them!! Loved this post..

  3. One of the worst dates I went on was with a guy from the church I went to at the time… one of those “I’ll date anyone once” kind of dates… when he picked me up, there was enough room for me to sit in the passenger seat… the rest of the car was FULL of posters and who know what kind of movie memorabilia. The date? Was to drive to Hendersonville to see Chuck Norris who was there to promote his new movie, but we got there too late – guess he had the wrong time. We did see the movie, and then I had him take me home… I had to work the next day, I think. I know I didn’t want to spend any more time with him.

    • Don’t you just love those dates that are all about the guy? Did you care anything about Chuck Norris? The gambler might not have been the best guy, but he bought me Amy Grant concert tickets within 15 minutes of hearing that I’d love to see her in concert. What ever happened to chivalry?

  4. Pedro

    Great blog Kimberly. Gives us guys an insight from the “other side”. I would love to hear what went right during dates and what makes ladies accept the invitation to a date. To us that’s perhaps the most difficult step due to the possibility of rejection.

    • Well, Pedro, what went right with many of those dates was that I got to go to some great places I never would’ve gone by myself. The guy who found out what I liked and made a way for us to do it was my favorite when it came to actual date activities. Get to know a girl, find out what she likes, and then tell her you’ve found the next thing she might like and want to take her. The guy who does that isn’t likely to be rejected because the girl is flattered that he’d take the time to figure her out and delight her. Go all out. A girl is thinking if the first date isn’t good, why believe that the 100th date will be good? We tend to think it’s all downhill from the first big date. This isn’t to say there can’t be an initial get-to-know-you coffee date first to feel out the situation, but if you know you like her, make it impossible for her to refuse. Once you’re on the date, it’s all up to you to get a second date. That’s where that guy I went out with failed…

      Dr. Cloud’s book said that rejection is just part of the deal. Some people like bananas, other people don’t. Don’t take it personally if someone isn’t interested. That’s hard to do at times, but when someone doesn’t like me I just think “bananas!” I don’t need the whole world to love me – just that one person God has for me. Everyone else is obviously not him.

  5. Hey Kimberly,

    Saw that you’ve taught Chase the Lion several times. I work with Threads- the team that produced Mark Batterson’s Bible study Chase the Lion- you can find it here Mark also released the study Chase the Goose from Threads. Just thought you might want to check it out. Thanks!- Jenny

  6. Kimberly,

    This blog is HILARIOUS! I can assure you, even 27 years of marriage can’t dim the memory of some of the “interesting” dates I had. There was the guitar player I dated when I was a teenager. During one of our make-out fests I asked him what those spastic hand movements on my back were about. His response, “I’m working out some cool new guitar licks in my head.” Um WOW, how romantic. But then again, he was only 19.

    I’m thankful my dating career is OVER! I’ve often told Michael if anything happens to him it’ll just be me and the dogs! No more dating for me.

  7. Let’s see… there was the guy I call The Wal-Mart groper. On our first (and only) date we had dinner and I honestly have NO idea how we ended up walking around Wal-Mart. However, we did. In one of the toy aisles we start talking and he starts to get in my “personal space”, trying to basically make out! In Wal-Mart! On our first date!
    There was also the obnoxious co-worker. We had talked on the phone several times. It was always about him. And he was sarcastic to the point of being annoying. I decided I had nothing better to do one night, so I met him for dinner at O’Charleys. I kept looking at my watch wondering how long I must endure his incessant ramblings about his sarcastic self. Luckily, some of my friends ended up coming in to the restaurant. About 15 minutes pass and he decides it is time to leave the restaurant. He asks if I want to take our date somewhere else…. I respond that no, I believe I am just going to go hang out with my friends. It was a lot worse than it sounds, trust me.
    I am so happy to be happily married!

    • Thanks for sharing your experiences, Jenny. Wal-Mart is certainly a romantic first date! LOL. I think I went out with your co-worker once too. He was so sarcastic that I couldn’t take any more than one hour with him. Hot, but intolerable… And thanks for adding me to your blog roll!

  8. reflectionsbypj

    OH.MY.WORD!!! I am cracking up! I so remember these guys – butt-man was unforgettable indeed! I’ve got so many of those “funnies” – what girl doesn’t. Ha! I guess a good one would be this… A guy drives 45mins to pick me up at my house from his house to go on a date which consisted of driving 45mins back to his house for me to sit on his parents living-room couch watching tv with one of his younger siblings while he goes to another room to play the piano while the rest of his family gathers around him to sing – for 3 hours – and then drives me 45mins back to my house… good times – I can’t even begin to explain the level of F-U-N in that evening – sadly, it was an often occurrence and I was extremely naive!

    • Oh my goodness, Penny… I think you win the award for the most awkward date! Perhaps you should’ve gone in the other room and laid across the piano to admire him while he played? Ha!

      • Johnny Thompson

        OK Kim, Guys have stories also.
        Met a nice girl(so I thought) at a News Years Eve party. I asked her out the next weekend. We went to a nice restaurant where she proceeded to order the Steak and Whole Lobster. I was impressed. I like women who aren’t afraid to eat in front of men. After the salad came she suddenly got a bad migraine. We decided to pack the food to go and I took her home. 2 weeks and a few unanswered phone calls later, I got the message that she wasn’t interested. No big deal, other fish in the sea and all that. But I found out later that this is SOP for this girl and her roommate. Go out with a “NICE” guy, order a big meal, get sick and go home to share with the roommate.

        Oh…Penny, I promise not to make you sit on my Parents couch while I play the Piano. Mainly because I can’t play the piano..;-)

      • Well, Johnny, that just sucks. What a horrible girl!

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