last week, i went on a date.

hands down, the fellow will make a great exercise partner, caring friend, and committed boyfriend.  it was a wonderful date, one that i shall remember fondly.

but there won’t be a second helping.

five years ago, this sort of date would have knocked my kate spades off.  he’s the john galt of the chiropractic community.  in his late 40s, regularly competing in triathlons, he’s smart, handsome, and paid for drinks.  what more could a girl want?

welcome to my life.

pre-date photos with gwendolyn!

before the date, i established a formal hypothesis, in that seventh grade honours biology class sort of way.  “if i go on a date, then i can be the real me.”  and because, in the last two years, i’ve canceled more dates than i’ve kept, including one to St. Bart’s, i challenged myself to actually keep this commitment, in honour of healthy progress.  i wanted to prove to myself that i could keep a social obligation outside of my strict calendar and food rules.  i was anxious all day, saving calories for the date, just in case; and a pre-date glass of wine convinced me to fulfill the obligation.

i was, indeed, the real me.


dressed in a cute audrey hepburn little black dress, i enjoyed my pinot noir (which he researched beforehand, learning that it’s my favourite of wines, bravo, doctor); and we talked about ayn rand, yoga, and leaving pittsburgh.  he honoured my pre-established date-end-time of 9:17pm, and he walked me to the car, sending a follow-up text message during the very next morning.  he’s a catch.  a good find.  a hidden treasure in the sea of pittsburgh pollution.

but something wasn’t right.  i felt off.  and i felt badly for the next 12 hours, trying to pinpoint exactly where it went wrong.  why didn’t i want an encore experience?

and then it struck me.

we didn’t talk about dogs.

since joining, almost 11 years ago, i’ve gone from pretentious housewife wannabe to outdoorsy cottage girl wearing side ponytails.  i’ve changed a lot, and dogs were instrumental in that change.  i love dogs, and gwendolyn is my world.  i want the perfect man who i can trust to walk her without my supervision.  i’ve been the serial dater.  but i’m looking for something more, a life that includes my dog.  the doctor and i will be friends, especially during election years.  but romance won’t bloom.

yes, i’m weird.  and one day, a guy might love my weirdness.  so, until then, i’ll just continue being the real me.  gwendolyn will be the real puggle.  and we’ll wait, happily, for our special mate.

so, who’s next?  🙂

© nicole marie story and, 2011.