I’ve been thinking more and more about my deep fear of dating.
It makes no sense.
I’m an extrovert, love to make new friends, enjoy other people’s life stories, and like talking about myself (clearly.) I should LOVE dating!
As I’ve said in previous entries, this is not a new thing. Whether I was going out with a stranger or someone I had a friendly relationship with, I’ve freaked out before dates as long as I can remember.
Thinking back, I have had some dating horror stories that may contribute to the loathing.
When I was 23 (15 years ago) my friend Sue Hahn set me up with a friend of her then boyfriend now husband.
She showed me a pic and he was cute enough so I agreed. Back then that was all I cared about. Was he cute and did he have nice arms? Most important characteristics to me. Very important to my young, shallow old self, who had pretty much zero hard knocks and zero humility.
So this guy, we’ll call Deeb (short for D-bag,) comes to pick me up and conveniently leaves his jacket on my couch. After the date, which was actually pretty fun, he insisted he come into my apartment to get said jacket. He proceeded to make his way to my kitchen and asked me if I wanted a glass of wine because he did. I told him to please refrain from drinking my wine because he had to drive himself home like NOW and I don’t condone drunk driving. He literally poured a glass, CHUGGED IT, and said, “Guess I’m not leaving then.” Direct quote. I was appalled, kicked him out, wished him luck getting home, and prayed he wasn’t going to get into an accident and hurt an innocent bystander because that would really suck ass. I obviously never saw him again but several years later learned that he did win the lottery. I swear he really did. Damn it! I definitely could’ve learned to love Deeb. Kidding. Sort of…
There were also some dates where I was actually the Deeb.
So, I used to roll deep in the LA karaoke circuit. Haha I even made myself laugh with that one.
Every night a different bar in Hollywood would host a karaoke night and my friends and I were regulars at all of them. We’d sing our hearts out, meet new people, and drink. Lava Lounge on Sundays, Barney’s Beanery on Mondays, Brass Monkey any day, etc. I love to sing and used to be pretty good at it so this was my jam. Karaoke at Hollywood bars was also the jam of a certain Oscar nominated actor whose name rhymes with Beremy Lenner. Oh man, I hate name dropping, but you guessed it. Jeremy Renner. Ugh, you found me out. So embarrassing, I hate name droppers. Any-who, I’d see “Remy” at all of these different bars. He had the singing voice of an angel and I found him quite intriguing. He wasn’t a star back then, he was just a dude in a bunch of commercials, one of those commercials co-starred my girl Laura Katz. Ooooh small world, Jeremy, let’s hang out sometime. So we hung out a few times and would talk on the phone. He would play his guitar over the phone and I would listen. It was boring as hell but I pretended to think it was awesome because that’s what you do when you like someone and you’re young and dumb. After maybe two or three hang sesh’s we made a plan to have his friends and my friends all meet at Barney’s for a night of belting and boozing. I showed up with my peeps and got really nervous. I started taking shots with my friend Keri Lynn. Bad idea. Baaaad idea. We got drunk quick and early. I remember seeing the actor (prepare for name drop) Jonathan Silverman (Weekend at Bernie’s, duh,) at the bar and my friend Keri approached him to say, “SilverSTONE! I need a chicken finguh!” She has a thick Rhode Island accent, hence “finguh”, not “finger.” He actually dipped it in honey mustard and gave her a bite of his chicken finger. Cool dude for realz! I began to fret when I realized I hadn’t signed up for a song yet so I decided to skip the singing for one night because I was really in no shape to take the stage.
Keri convinced me otherwise.
Keri: “Alison, we need to sing togethah!”
1. She always calls me Alison instead of Ali.
2. Keri is NOT a singer.
Me: “Not tonight.”
Keri: “Yes! We’re gonna sing “Dude Looks Like a Lady. Arrowsmith!”
I thought about this. Great song but…
Me: “I only know the chorus, not the verses.”
Keri: “It doesn’t mattah, I’ll take the versus.”
So we signed up.
Cut to us on stage. I grabbed the mic and saw Remy and his friends sauntering in. The music starts:
Keri and Ali: “Dun, Dun, DUDE LOOKS LIKE A LADY! Dun, dun, DUDE LOOKS LIKE A LADY!”
We were taking charge of the stage, dancing, and singing the chorus. Then the verse started. I looked to Keri to “take the verse,” and she stared at me blankly then said into the mic, “I don’t know how the f*ck it goes?” I laughed so hard. We laughed so hard. We were literally laying on the floor of the stage rolling around laughing our asses off into the microphones. ON THE FLOOR. Rolling and laughing. Classy!
Jeremy Renner never called me again and I can’t say I blame him.
The only times I wasn’t nervous on dates was when I would go out with someone just to get the person I was really in love with out of my mind.
For a few years I dated my across the street neighbor on and off. I DO NOT RECOMMEND THIS. I would torture myself and wake up at 3am to see if a girl’s car was in his driveway or not. Many times there was. During this time I went on several dates with different people and was totes mellow and confident about it. One of the guys was this super cute and hysterical dude named Dave Giuntoli. He’s a successful actor now, still as sweet and cute as he was back then and I couldn’t be happier for all of his well deserved success. I digress. Dave and I went out a few times, he took me to lovely places, wined and dined me, great convo, total connection, etc. Oh snap, I dropped a name and didn’t acknowledge it! Boom! Hear the beat drrrrrropppp!? The problem with dating Dave was that I was stuck on my neighbor! I’d come home from hanging with Dave and hang with the neighbor. Not cool. Not cool at all. Dave lost interest, obvi, and I wasted quite a bit of time with this neighbor until he started spending time with a new girl. A lot of time. So much time we stopped talking and her car in his driveway was just a fixture. They ended up getting married and have two kids. I’m actually genuinely happy for him and wish him nothing but the best. He smelled strange…
The times I wasn’t nervous dating were few and far between. Mostly I was terrified.
I met Ian because he was a client of another trainer at the gym.
We had both just gotten out of relationships so we’d chat and laugh the several times a week I’d see him at my work. He was so cool. One of the coolest. Total bud. He unexpectedly asked me to hang out. I agreed, but only on the terms that it WAS NOT A DATE. I hate dates, I told him, and refuse to put myself through this torture. He said no prob and we made a plan. I dreaded this meeting for the days leading up to it. And this is a guy who is my friend and I love talking to! I wanted to cancel. I wanted to vomit. But alas, the day came and we went out. I reminded him it was a “fake date,” and had a lovely time. We went on quite a few “fake dates,” until one night he tried to kiss me in my garage. I literally exclaimed, “NO!” It was awkward as hell. Horrible. He text me that he was done fake dating me and if I changed my mind and wanted to “real date” to give him a call. I did change my mind and we ended up having a wonderful relationship and Ian became one of the great loves of my life. We broke up because we were in very different places in our lives and wanted different things. I wanted a husband and baby, and my next relationship brought me just that. Now I’m here, with no husband, one almost toddler, and still the same fear of dating. So crazy, I really thought I’d never have to date again.
I think I’ll end here. Thank you for reading! Picture is during one of my birthday parties. Keri presented me with a giant microphone.
I’ve been thinking more and more about my deep fear of dating.