Date Reporters

Rachel’s First Date Report: Meet Matt … and James!

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This is the latest post from our Los Angeles-based Date Reporter Rachel Nina Schwartz. She’ll be documenting her experience dating in LA. Catch up on her story — including her thoughts on filling out a profile and sending messages here. And now, meet her dates.

Date #1:

After what was an initial pace of fits and starts, the browsing and messaging finally paid of this week.
Wednesday night I met Matt* for a drink at a nice spot that was near both of us and had good parking options (I’m learning that in LA that’s a huge issue). Obviously, I was running a few minutes late due to a pesky phone call interruption whilst in the middle of flat-ironing my hair. Matt was super chill about it and texted that he was sending me “good traffic vibes” to expedite my drive over. Shockingly, I got to the spot about two minutes before he did, so I sat at the bar and perused the drink menu while waiting for him.

To my horror a super creepy/tragic man materialized at my side and had just gotten a “Hey there, can I buy you a drink?” out of his mouth when Matt walked up to save the day. Not only did he rescue me from creepy guy, but it was a great opening conversation starter that gave us both a good laugh.

When we sat down, we oriented ourselves to sit facing each other, his feet propped on the rungs of my bar stool.

I’m so accustomed to men lying about their height online that it’s always pleasing when someone is as tall as they say they are. Not only was Matt of the height his profile indicated, he was better looking in person than he was in his photos (get some better photos up there, Matt!). Conversation was easy, we laughed, we asked each other questions, and there were no awkward pauses. While I didn’t feel an irresistible urge to make out with him or rip-off his plaid button down shirt, I will say that we almost immediately oriented ourselves to sit facing each other, his feet propped on the rungs of my bar stool (if you know what I mean). [Editor’s Note: Yep, we so do.]

During the date I had told him about being a HowAboutWe Date Reporter, and about State of Date and he was super cool about it, interested, and not put-off. When we left the bar (he sorted the check in the most gentlemanly fashion possible — while I was in the Ladies Room) we said our goodbyes on the sidewalk and he asked to me to dinner next week — I accepted. An appropriate thanks/goodnight follow-up text was received just as I got home. [Editor’s note: See what HowAboutWe members said when we asked if it’s ok to send a text after a great first date.]

Bottom line: the location he chose was great, we got along well, we liked each other and we’d both like to go out again.

Date #2:

As a freelancer, I can indulge in dates at all hours of the day, so when James* asked me to meet for coffee Thursday afternoon, it was a go. I suggested the location because I love the coffee at this spot and I’m not taking chances going in blind on both the guy and my iced americano with whole milk (unheard of in LA). Since it was a day-date I went for spiffy with a short skirt and flats; he wore jeans and a white button down. He was also very tall! I’ve seem to have won the height jackpot in LA! We got our coffees, compared notes on milk/sugar preferences, and sat ourselves on a nice shady bench.

At a certain point he literally got up and helped an extremely old, frail lady out of her car . This was impressive, yet also made me wonder if he did it because I was sitting there or if he’s really that gallant and respectful (also maybe I am a very cynical person). James and I got on well enough, had some interesting exchanges re: travel and work, but I left feeling as if I didn’t know much about him. Except that he surfs and has extra boards! Which is great because I’ve been looking to get back into my whole having guys take me surfing this summer thing. We could have chatted for longer, but my parking meter was about to expire. He walked me to my car, we wished each other a nice afternoon, and said we’d be in touch.

Bottom line: He’s smart and good-looking, but I felt more of a friendical vibe with James. While I would love to hang out again, I’d probably recommend him to a friend as dating material.

*Actual names have been replaced with these silly substitutes. Check out my date reviews on State of Date if you’re curious about their usernames!

Rachel Nina Schwartz is a designer based in New York who is currently in LA for the summer, where she will be writing about her dating experiences. She looks forward to learning how to surf and reveling in a climate conducive to good hair days. Check out her other project,