Juan Pablo Syndrome

Named after the man himself.  Who, you ask?  Well, in case you didn’t devote two hours every single Monday during the first few months of 2014 watching ABC’s The Bachelor, then here’s a quick clip which sums up why Juan Pablo embodies one of the most common problem I see guys exhibiting on dates:

To be clear, I obvi don’t expect my date to be asking me serious questions about topics like my political views or how I want to raise my kids someday – dear Lord, that would be an entirely different problem of its own.  But Andi hits in on the head when she says “I just never honestly feel like you were trying to get to know me” and at another point she says “I’ve never been with someone who has asked me so little about myself and when I try and tell you stories it’s like you have another story; immediately you have another story.” Unfortunately, by the time Andi came to these realizations, she was already far into the relationship (and by far, I mean a few weeks… which in the anomalous world of the Bachelor is practically an eternity).  As an avid watcher of that season, though, I’ll tell you that it was clear very early on that Juan Pablo didn’t seem to ask any of the girls many questions at all.  If he wasn’t making out with a girl, then he was talking about himself or his daughter.

Fortunately, we can all learn from this showing of self-absorption and realize it in our own dating experiences.  To be honest, I am shocked that it is such a common problem because I thought it was simple Dating 101 knowledge that you want to get the other person talking – more specifically, the girl.  You don’t even have to take my word for it.  Take the word of every girl’s man crush Ryan Gosling; his character in Crazy Stupid Love preaches the importance of not talking all about yourself:

Now, I’m not trying to say that every guy that talks about himself all the time is completely self-absorbed.  Perhaps he is nervous.  Or wants to impress me.  Or something.  But let’s be real, it isn’t hard to take a breather after talking about yourself and ask the person you are on a date with, “And how about you?”  The other person might be boring as hell, but it’s just courteous to act like you care about getting to know them.  (Plus, I’m willing to bet that you aren’t actually as incredibly interesting as you think you are.)  This also does not only apply to first dates.  Like in Andi’s case, it might take some time to suddenly realize that you know a whole lot more about them than they know (or have ever cared to try to know) about you.

So daters…if you realize halfway through the date that you are out of breath and know very little about the person next to/across from you, then you have the Juan Pablo Syndrome.

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Dating Déjà Vu

(For this to really make sense, you probably need to read about my first OKCupid date.)

Of course this would only happen to me.  I mean what are the chances?  I’m out on a date with one guy and at the same time, this is the text exchange I have with another OKCupid guy I was scheduled to go out with the next week:

Him: If you don’t think I’m gonna comment on this, you’re mistaken.
Me: Haha so is that your comment? Or do you have more up your sleeve?
Him: I mean, aside from that being a lovely leopard print shirt, I may just leave it at that.

Completely caught red-handed.  I never saw this coming either because the guys were from completely different areas of the city.  Since I still really wanted to go out with this guy, I tried to reconcile things the next morning.  Thankfully, he thought all of it was pretty funny.

Me: So since that text I’ve been contemplating a suitable response.  But I must say… I’m speechless haha.  That’s what I get for wearing animal print.
Me: Sooo… same place next week?  Let’s just sit at the same table this time.
Him: Hahahaha animal print’s always a good choice! But come on, it’s super easy to make fun of “loud guy watching sports game.” (And yes, I did mention in my previous post how I noticed some guy making a ruckus when a certain college basketball team won a game at the last second.)
Him: And haha sure, sounds good to me!

So the date was set, and we were meeting at the same exact place I had gone the week before.  From the Uber ride (same exact driver as the week before – and yes, he remembered me) to the bartenders (same exact bartender – and yes, he remembered me too), this date had a lot of repeats.  Fortunately, there weren’t as many problematic repeats as the previous week, but there were still enough…

Problem #1: Kinda Catfish
Part of the reason I noticed the “loud guy watching sports game” but never even somewhat recognized him was because his profile didn’t provide a very clear picture of what he looked like present day.  It’s not like he was pulling a stunt like so many people on the show Catfish, but there was enough ambiguity to make me unsure of whether or not I’d easily spot him upon arriving for the date. It was not like other guys whose height was the only thing that was deceiving; his pictures all actually looked quite different. Basically, he had some pictures with a full head of hair and looking great, while others were of a balding guy who barely resembled the other pictures. In photos of more than one person, it was a guessing game for which guy he was. Let’s be honest, if he looked like the better looking guy with lots of hair, I wouldn’t have considered this to be a problem. But he didn’t, and that’s why it is.

catfish

Problem #2: Juan Pablo Syndrome
It’s funny…because of all of the guys I have gone out with, this guy is the most I had in common with. So you would think that it would be a good back-and-forth two-way conversation, right? WRONG. He talked so loud and so fast and so much that I never had a chance to fit in a word. After a while I started to just cut him off to get my two cents in.

stop stop

Problem #3: Chronic Swearer
Plain and simple – he swore too often, and the F-bomb was easily his favorite word. To make matters worse, he was REALLY loud, so I wasn’t the only one who had to endure his language.

shhhh

Despite all of this, it wasn’t thaaaat bad of a date. He was funny, which did (almost) make up for (some of) his downfalls. I had intended to give him a second shot, but the next date we could work out was almost two weeks out, and by then I was over it. On to the next one.

Overbooked and Caught Red-Handed with OKCupid

February: the worst month of the year.  Seeing as this was the month I decided to join OKCupid, I was basically just setting myself up for a month of dating failures.

In the first week, I scheduled three different OKCupid dates:
1) Wednesday with one of those guys whose profile picture is him with a dead fish he just caught (that should have been the first red flag)
2) Monday with someone who was completely not my type but played at my weakness for food by offering to take me out for food on the first date. (I ended up cancelling this and never rescheduling.)
3) Wednesday with a guy who looked really attractive in some pictures but balding and only semi-attractive in other pictures – but still really funny nonetheless.

For the first date, I hopped in an Uber and met up at the same place I had gone on a second date with the anesthesiologist.   The bar wasn’t that crowded except for a few couples and some guy that went nuts when his college basketball team won at the buzzer.  Here is how it went down…

Problem #1: Juan Pablo Syndrome

You know when you are talking to someone and the entire time you can just see them waiting to start talking again?  Well, not like this guy gave me many chances to talk in the first place, but when I did, he was practically jumping out of his chair ready to start talking again.  I could physically see himself trying to stop himself from cutting me off (which he still did quite a few times).  And when he was talking, I honestly can’t even remember what he was talking about.  All I can tell you is that when he did go silent, he wasn’t listening – he was just waiting to talk.

interrupted

Problem #2: Total Bro

Again, there isn’t much to really say about this except that when you see/hear/talk to a Total Bro, it is obvious.  To add to his bro-ness, he continually kept referring to his friends as “my frat brothers.”  I’m cool with the fact that you were in a fraternity in college, but kiddo, you have been graduated for at least 5 years now.  It’s time that you just call them your friends now…or at least when talking about them to someone you just met.

bro dance

Problem #3: Dull

When a guy has JP Syndrome, he typically isn’t dull at the same time.  Well apparently it is possible because boyyyy was he boring.  No joke, my brain went into sleep mode the same way a computer does.  I completely stopped listening to what he was saying and just smiled, nodded, drank my beer, and thought of other things while he went on and on about absolutely nothing interesting.  I got away with this because – in true JP Syndrome fashion – he never asked me about what was on my mind.

fake smile

About halfway through the date, I checked my phone and had a text from upcoming Date #3.  It read: If you don’t think I’m gonna comment on this, you’re mistaken.  Assuming he must have been talking about a text I had sent earlier, I asked him what he meant.  Then I went back to my date…

Problem #4: Inconvenience

Usually when someone wants to meet up anytime after 8pm, I find it to be pretty inconvenient because I usually have to go way out of my way to meet him.  But this first OKCupid guy lived not too far from me, and so I didn’t mind going out with him later in the evening.  The inconvenience factor kicked in around 11:15.  Both of us had finished our drinks and not only was I bored and hungry, but I was also just plain exhausted.  I told him that I wasn’t trying to cut the date short (even though we’d already been out for about 3 hours) but that I had to get into work early the next day and would need to head home soon.  He said, “Well, I was going to have another drink, soooo are you just going to make me drink it alone? You can just have a water or something.” Ummm, seriously?  I said, “It’s not that I can’t handle another drink, I’m just really tired and need to get some sleep.”  His response? “Well I’m going to have another one sooooo I guess I’ll have it by myself.”  Honestly, I should have just left.  But I asked for a water and stuck it out a bit longer until he finished his beer.

fucking kidding me

When he went to the bathroom again, I whipped out my phone to see the following response from upcoming Date #3: I mean, aside from that being a lovely leopard print shirt, I may just leave it at that.  Oh fuck.  Caught red-handed.  It was time to get out of there.

Problem #5: First Date Check

Call me old fashioned, but I do expect a guy to foot the bill on the first date.  Now, to clarify, if we happened to have a massive dinner or racked up a gigantic tab, then of course there are times when the girl should help out.  Similarly, if it’s a second date, then who pays the bill is not a huge deal anymore.  Despite this expectation, I will still make a quick I’m-expecting-you-to-say-no offer to pay, and many guys know the drill and tell me that they’ve got it covered.  OKCupid Date #1 was not one of those guys.  I made my fake offer and without hesitation he said “sure, let’s split it.”  I typically won’t get too overworked about this, but I was tired and felt forced there longer than I wanted to be…and I had less to drink than him.

you are really serious

I am sure it comes as no shock that I never saw OKCupid Date #1 again.  But now I was super bummed about Date #3 seeing me with Date #1 because I legitimately was excited to go out with Date #3.  I didn’t know how to respond, and so I waited until morning to address it…