Tuesday, December 16, 2014
The Treadmill Date
Despite my love and passion for the sport, it may come as a surprise that I’d never really want to mix running with dating. Maybe later on in a relationship where talking isn’t essential and we can just run. But running is my escape, and I’d rather not be under the crunch to be witty and conversational with an attractive woman while I’m trying to escape.
Nonetheless, I found myself having a running date early in my tenure on Match. I had been chatting with a doctor who prided herself on multitasking. We agreed to move from messaging to a phone conversation. She gave me her number and I called it at the agreed upon time.
Turns out she was multi-tasking again.
This time she was running on a treadmill.
Better yet, the treadmill was so loud that she couldn’t hear me talk.
Meanwhile, I'm on a business trip in North Carolina, holed up in a hotel room due to a blizzard.
"Hi, this is Lex."
"Yes, Lex from Match."
"Sorry, I can't hear you very well. I'm running."
"At a gym?"
"OK, well, I'll try to speak up."
So for the next 20 minutes I kept repeating what I said in a louder and louder voice, and by the end of the conversation, my voice hurt. I'm not sure it's possible for someone's voice to hurt. But mine did.
This was a Monday. I didn't learn much about the doctor during our conversation, but we did agree to a second date the following Saturday. I waited until Saturday morning to touch base with the doctor, mostly because I didn't feel like yelling into a phone anymore. So I emailed her.
"Are we still on for tonight?"
"I don't think so."
"No, I didn't like how you treated me."
"I felt like I was in front of the Spanish Inquisition. You kept yelling at me."
"Oh, I didn't realize that. I thought you asked me to speak up because you were on a treadmill."
"And I couldn't shake the feeling that by yelling you were trying to put me in my place."
The doctor not only was female, she was African American. Since I dated three different African Americans in college and a fourth in law school, my conscience was clear.
"OK, well, I'm sorry. Good luck in your search."
And that was that.
Dating, like life, is a box of chocolates.