By an overwhelming majority, most of you agreed with me that meeting Bachelor Number 3 at a high school baseball game (that he was coaching) would be weird. As it turned out, I already had a hair appointment for Saturday that would have prevented me from attending the afternoon game though I know that it may see like a lame excuse, I stick to keeping my hair blonde, else I’d have to change the name of this blog.
Anyway, I told Bachelor Number 3 the unfortunate news, hoping he’d ask me to meet him at another time, at another location–one more appropriate for meeting someone from a dating website for the first time; preferably one without a multitude of boys under 18 and their proud parents.
But he did not. His suggestion was that I come to the next game, Wednesday afternoon, my day off. Stunned at his persistence that I come to a baseball game, I relented, and thus began the weirdest date of my short career.
I woke up around 7:30 Wednesday morning, feeling good for having slept in a bit. I decided to go through my normal routine of Wednesday cardio and yoga, and then substantial housecleaning chores. I mopped the kitchen floor and did my grocery shopping and set to change out my wardrobe from winter to spring. And of course I wasted most of my time on Facebook. Before I realized it, it was after 2:00 and I’d have to hurry to ready myself and drive the 40 minutes or so to the game.
The drive was uneventful, but despite having been to the field before (once, in high school), I of course got lost. Still, I was persistent and arrived by what looked to be the second inning (and they only play 7 in high school; less if they call a ‘slaughter rule’). Anyway, I approached the field and wish I had brought my own chair, you know, the type in the bag? It would have saved me having to navigate my way to the bleachers and decide where to sit. But I didn’t bring my own chair and was forced to perch myself precariously on a metal (COLD!) bench about two rows up, in the middle of some parents. I decided to text Bachelor Number 3 and let him know I made it, so he’d see it after the game and realize I was there, hanging around. “I made it! Sitting in the stands, sorry I was late”.
Almost immediately a figure poked out of the dug out and started searching for me. Eye contact was made and I waved a tiny, tiny wave so as to be pretty inconspicuous. Why I bothered, I’m not sure, because Bachelor Number 3 returned an overenthusiastic waving of both arms that attracted several eyes. Oh well, he’s excited. that’s a good thing, I’m sure.
Time passed and I wished I’d brought a book. High school baseball is less than thrilling; not excruciating, but certainly not a sport I ever thought I’d return to watch. I suppose it’s more captivating if you have a vested interest of a son or husband involved. I remember few details of the game other than Bachelor Number 3’s team lost. Parents grumbled away, the opposing teams formed two lines and did the sportsman like hand shake. I remained on my perch. It looked like it was about to storm, but that’s not what was making me nervous.
“Here we go,” I thought to myself. I was sure he’d be coming my way soon to meet-and-greet for the first time. But oddly enough, he didn’t. Instead, an impromptu after-game run was implemented. The team started trotting toward the outfield, making their way around once, and then twice. Bachelor Number 3 watched them.
And I watched this whole scene. “Is he coming to talk to me? I knew this awkward shit would happen after a game,” I thought to myself. This little display of discipline or whatever you might call it continued for the next twenty minutes, before a quite team huddle was called and then a 1-2-3-BREAK! signaled that it was over.
The boys collected their things from the dugout, and met up with the parents who had stayed behind. As they filtered back to the parking lot, Bachelor Number 3 made his way toward me. It was a warm day, but much warmer on the field, I am sure, because he was sweating profusely in his baseball uniform as he walked toward me.
Keep in mind, this was our first ever meeting in person. I extended my hand and he shifted his weight so that a bat-bag would go over his shoulder. At the same time as I let out a loud “Nice to meet you!” Bachelor Number 3 simply said “How was your day?” Confused, I simply said it was a good day, and that the weather looked like it was turning now. “Yeah, glad we got the game in,” he replied.
I stood there in my wedge-heels feeling very out-of-place, but unsure what to do about it. Just about the time I was realizing that wedges were probably the worst choice of all time, Bachelor Number 3 shifted again with the bat bag and said he had to get them to the car.
I walked with him, not at his invitation, but I walked. He asked how I enjoyed the game, and I answered honestly that it was nice to be outside and that watching baseball is something that was enjoyable, too. We reached his car, and it was nice, so I complimented it. It was a brand new Mustang. This should be something any man is proud to talk about–someone just complimented your spankin’ new sports car, dude! He thanked me but the conversation sort of ended there.
I got the vibe that he sort of felt weird–he had gotten me to come all this way finally, but didn’t know what to do now that the game was over and I was standing in front of him. I sympathize–that’s exactly why I didn’t want to do this in the first place.
He slammed the trunk down and turned to me, so I smiled and asked if he wanted to run over to the Sonic Drive-In and have a “drink”. I only had this idea in my head because as I passed it on the way in to the baseball field I was severely tempted to stop for a diet-cherry-limeade but knew I was already unforgivably late. So Bachelor Number 3 agreed and he suggested I drive to meet him there.
On the way over I strategized that sitting at the outdoor tables was much more preferable than sitting in either my car or his. So I pulled in to a parking spot and immediately got out of my car, walking toward the tables and hoped he’d follow suit. He sat in his car for a second before I waved him over. As much as our texting was like pulling teeth, directing this date was more so.
I would like to blog about how things really opened up at that point, but I can’t lie to you. Sonic is a terrible place to move a date, and I realize this now. But he was still wearing a baseball uniform and I couldn’t really see us going into a Ruby Tuesday (the other restaurant option in that town) bar like that. We ordered our drinks and chatted a bit, nothing funny and nothing natural. You know how some conversations wonder from topic to topic without real direction but it’s enjoyable? And then somehow you’re laughing about something and you have no idea how that subject even came to fruition? That is not Bachelor Number 3. Not at all. We talked about what we were each working on at work–me with a big recruitment mailing and he teaching the unit circle.
I thank God that a storm was brewing and eventually the sky lit up with a bolt of lightning. It was my cue to exit, stage left, with the excuse of getting on the interstate before the storm raged any harder.
He was seemed mopey that I was leaving so soon (we stayed at Sonic about 30 minutes), but I felt like we couldn’t sit outside much longer with the weather, but I wasn’t really wanting to go anywhere else with Mr. Baseball. And the conversation just wasn’t there. At all.
We stood up to leave and he went in for a hug. And I can’t say no when someone seems sad, so I let him. “I’ll call you tonight, okay babe?” That’s how he broke the hug. Uhh..
We’re not on the level of nicknames, calling every night, or even saying we had a successful date. Shit. Now what do I do?
At this point I feel like I should say that Bachelor Number 3 was pleasant but not friendly. What should have been a first meeting, I feel, wasn’t treated as such because it was on his turf (literal turf now that I think of it). He was familiar with the space and it was like I was any other person he’s always known, meeting up with him post-baseball game. And maybe he planned it that way. Bachelor Number 3, as you recall, was pretty serious from the get-go email and made it clear he was looking for a wife. I think, for at least 3 hours today, he got to see what it would be like to have a girlfriend/wife come to see him at a baseball game and head to Sonic for a drink before trotting home, happily ever after. I think he’s looking for a relationship to have immediate comfort before there’s really a connection. For him, I think it’s important to be serious. And for me, it’s important to really connect with someone before I am “that” comfortable.
I let my half of the hug go a-frame (arms patting the back, butt sticking out far, far away from the recipient.) and thanked him for the Sonic drink and scurried off under the guise of beating the rain.
I guess I’m not sorry I went to Bachelor Number 3’s baseball game because it at least let me see that I wasn’t mistaken…he was definitely looking for more than I can give right now. I want a serious relationship, eventually. But I can’t just jump in with both feet yet. This is all too new for me. I need the connection, the friendship, the awkward first few dates before I see you after work and you call me by any sort of nickname.
Call me crazy if you like, but this was too much for me.
This may be the end of Bachelor Number 3 dates.