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Sunday, October 28, 2007

7:30 p.m., Carlyle, Shirlington

Douglas: I was a little early, and as I was walking in the front door, by golly, she walked up to me and introduced herself. Maybe I looked like I was in need of a date!

Libby: I saw an older man in a jacket standing outside on the sidewalk and went out to get him. He greeted me with a kiss on the cheek and told me I was beautiful. That set the tone of the evening -- old-fashioned and gentlemanly.

Douglas: She's drop-dead gorgeous. Very slim and trim, wearing a tasteful, conservative pantsuit and nice jewelry. I would've guessed her [to be] 45; when she told me her age later, I just about fell over!

Libby: I knew right away that I wasn't attracted to him. He's small in stature and slight -- I like men who are taller and more robust. It was a chemistry thing.

Douglas: We went upstairs to a small booth. I got an Old-Fashioned; she had a chardonnay. We split a crab-puff appetizer. The talk just seemed to pour out of both of us. She's been divorced a number of years and has had a couple of long relationships. She also talked about her travels; she'd lived overseas in Egypt and done a lot of traveling by herself, which I thought was wonderful.

Libby: He'd traveled to the Middle East for business -- not many men I date have been to that part of the world. So it was nice to have someone to talk to about the Middle East. He told me about his late wife, how they'd been married for 45 years. He also told me about his daughter who lives in Texas and runs a llama farm. He's dated some of his wife's single friends -- with his children's blessing -- and said that he'd like to find somebody serious.

Douglas: She made a couple of cautionary comments like, "Well, we're strangers, and we don't know what may turn up." I took that to mean she'll be very cautious, and that's okay.

Libby: To be honest, I'm sort of seeing someone now. I don't know if we're serious, but he saw me in my bathing suit, with my wrinkles and everything, and he's still around.

Douglas: [At the end of the meal,] she told me that she was going on vacation, and I asked if I could call her when she got back. She said, "Oh, yes." We exchanged numbers.

Libby: What I said was, "I really don't think this will work out, but if you want, you can call me." [After dinner,] Douglas walked me to my car, told me how to get back onto the highway to get home and then tried to kiss me. He was going for the mouth. He was a little assertive, but I would be that way if I were attracted to someone. The date was a 4 [out of 5]. He was a genuinely nice man: honest, charming, engaging, a risk-taker. There was just not chemistry there.

Douglas: I'd hoped she'd say: "I've fallen madly in love; let's go home and go to bed." But I didn't get an overwhelming sense that she has to see me again. [Still,] I'd give the date a 5. I fully intend to call her.

Interviews by Jill Hudson Neal

UPDATE: Douglas called, as promised. Libby "said we had no chemistry," he reports. "But she gave me her friend's name and phone number. So maybe I'll call her!"

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