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Date Lab
Take two cooks. Add a dash of surprise. Let it simmer.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

7:30 P.M., Nooshi, Downtown

Brandi: I got there a couple of minutes before [Gordon] because I work in the area. The hostess showed me to the table. I was sending text messages to my friend [Angela Perry] who did Date Lab [last November].

Gordon: I told the hostess I was there for The Washington Post, and she showed me to the table. When I turned the corner and saw her, I immediately thought, That's not the type of girl I usually date. I usually date girls [who] are more athletic. There was nothing wrong with her, just not too much of an attraction.

Brandi: I saw him and thought, Thank God. I'm tall, and I had on really high heels. I don't need to date anyone who is 7 feet, but it's nice that he was tall. He had a nice complexion and smile. He was an attractive guy. He said hello with a handshake, and then we sat down.

Gordon: We started talking about Date Lab. I told her I talked to some friends about it and that when I told them my date's name was Brandi, we tried to predict what she looked like. One of my friends jumped to the conclusion about what type of name it is. She said Brandi is a white trash name. I said The Post wouldn't do that. Brandi just laughed when I told her that.

Brandi: I think Brandi is a totally normal name. I wasn't offended, just shocked that they didn't think it was a normal name.

Gordon: She told me she went to culinary school. That was an immediate connection. I told her I went to culinary school, too, and that I work as an assistant manager at a restaurant. But food-wise we're on different levels. I went to the Culinary Institute of America, which is the best school in the country. She went to Stratford, which is more localized. I work in the industry full time. She works for the government and bakes cakes on the side.

Brandi: It was good that we shared that interest. I was impressed that he went to the Culinary Institute. I graduated from culinary school in January. I'm baking cakes with my own business, Cake Anyone?. I told him I had a cake with me. I meant a picture on my phone. I was reaching into my purse, and he said, "Wait, you have a cake in your purse?" He said he was going to be impressed if I had brought one. I explained I meant a picture of one. We laughed about it, and he said the cake looked good. We talked about [my business] a lot, and he seemed interested.

Gordon: There was conversation the whole time, but it was mostly chitchat. It felt more like a friend vibe, maybe because I wasn't physically attracted to her or maybe because we weren't talking about anything too personal.

Brandi: The restaurant was closing. They kept asking if they could take the check, and he kept saying, no, we were going to stay. It was a little after 10, and I finally moved us toward leaving. I think if it was a place that [was] open later, and they were a bit more accommodating, we would have stayed. He walked me to my car and gave me a nice, big hug. We both said we had a good time. We didn't exchange information.

Gordon: I didn't ask for her number, and she didn't ask for mine. I wasn't looking to take it any further. I've found myself in situations before where I wasn't 100 percent into someone but just going with the flow. I'm trying to get out of that bad habit.

Brandi: I never, ever ask for the information. I leave that to the guy. You don't want to come off as too strong. But I didn't take it personally that he hadn't asked for mine because we had had a good night. I wasn't disappointed. I'm the kind of person who lets things happen as they may. There are no regrets.

Gordon: I'd give the date a 4 [out of 5]. There was plenty of conversation. We got along. She wasn't butt ugly. I would recommend her to a friend [if I thought] she might be more their type.

Brandi: I would give the date a 4. He was a gentleman. We had a lot in common, but it felt more friend-like. There was no flirting, and we didn't ask any personal questions.

Interviews by Kelly DiNardo

UPDATE: Nothing cookin'. Gordon and Brandi haven't had any contact since their date.

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