Posted on 11-03-2016
Going on a date seems like such an old-fashioned thing to do in this day and age, but I still love them. The anticipation, meeting for the first time, the initial awkward conversation – it never seems to get old. But every so often, I’m gently reminded that dates can turn into horrible things and that I’m better off locking myself in my apartment and watching reruns of Will and Grace.
To put things into perspective, the person who asked me out was no stranger – I knew him in a professional capacity, and every so often over email we’d flirt back and forth, or coyly chat each other up at events. He worked in PR, something I have a love/hate relationship with on a daily basis. It was a fun cat and mouse game – neither of us really making the first move to see if things would go anywhere, and to be honest I was quite happy with that. So it was actually a surprise when I got an email out of the blue from him, point-blank asking me out to dinner. Apparently our incessant flirting was fun, but he felt ‘there was more to me that needed exploring’. The restaurant he had chosen was fairly new, and it seemed innocent enough, so I accepted his invite graciously.
Date night rolls around and I meet him at the restaurant a few minutes behind schedule. The venue is nice – a bit garishly decorated for my tastes, but still cozy. I sit down and attempt to flag down a waiter so I can place a drinks order, but he shoos my hand away. “Don’t worry – I’ve already ordered our drinks and food…you’re going to love it”. I shoot him a puzzled and slightly annoyed look, but he doesn’t seem to pick up on it. I decide to let it slide and we carry on our conversation, pausing only when the drinks and food arrive at our table. I gawk slightly at the amount of food he’s ordered for just the two of us, but he doesn’t seem to be concerned. “Don’t forget to Instagram everything!” he adds with a laugh. Hilarious.
For the most part, dinner itself is an amicable affair, and just when I think that perhaps this dinner date wasn’t so bad after all, the shit hits the fan. The bill arrives and I promptly reach for my wallet to split the bill, but he happily adds “Oh don’t worry about that – your food is free tonight!” I expect he means that he’s paying with an Entertainer voucher or something, and by my puzzled look he works out that I don’t quite understand. “This is a new client I’m taking on board, so I wanted to bring you down to review it and let me know what you think. Did you like it?”
So my much-looked forward-to date night turned out to be none other than a sham for more stupid PR drivel. Yes ladies and gentlemen, it appears that even in my dating life, I can’t escape the clutches of PR.