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Sunday, July 20, 2008

7:30 P.M., MORTON'S THE STEAKHOUSE, DOWNTOWN

Chris: It was the hottest day you could ever choose for Date Lab, but we were going to Morton's, so I put on a suit and tie. In the car, my thermometer said 99. I found a parking spot right around the corner and went in.

Stephanie: The host told me he was waiting in the lounge area. We shook hands and introduced ourselves. I thought he was attractive and well put together, but you always have to end it with "for an Asian guy." I don't usually date Asian guys.

Chris: I've really only dated white girls. But I don't exclude based on race. She looked really good -- cute, short, nice outfit, nice smile. They put us in this booth and had us sitting next to each other.

Stephanie: We ordered and started the getting-to-know-you questions. We thought maybe it was one of those things like, "Neither of them really dates Asians, but let's see how it works out." You know, the lab part of Date Lab. We were like, "Okay, we'll just roll with it."

Chris: I mentioned that my type is the short, athletic girl next door, and she said, "That's actually how I describe myself." I was like, "There you go."

Stephanie: We had a lot in common. We're not the same ethnic background, but in our group of friends we're both like the token Asian. We talked about great bars and music -- he likes to listen to punk, and we both went to the Virgin Festival last year. I noticed that he didn't really ask me as many questions, but I'm really talkative.

Chris: I love talking about myself, and I'm one of those people who if I have a tangent to go off on, I totally will. [But] I'd like to learn more about her.

Stephanie: He kept saying, "You're kind of mean," which I take as a compliment. Nice is boring. The conversation was going well, and I was willing to give it a chance, but then I found that he's going to Albany in August to get his PhD. It was a little bit of a bomb.

Chris: I just decided to go to school in New York recently. But I still felt like there would be the possibility [of a match through Date Lab]. I was like, Who knows, maybe she'll be going to the same school. But I don't know if there is any real romantic chemistry. Part of me thinks it was the atmosphere: It was very proper. Subconsciously, it also could have been me not trying to pursue anything because I'm leaving.

Stephanie: We stayed pretty late. I think it was 11:30 when we decided to call it a night. He walked me to my car, and we hugged after exchanging phone numbers. We got along really well, so I would rate the date a 3.75 [out of 5], just because he's moving away.

Chris: I'd give it a 4. I don't know if there's a romantic spark, but it was a good time.

Interviews by Christina Breda Antoniades

UPDATE: The two talked about getting together for happy hour. But "I don't think either of us was pursuing it too heavily," says Stephanie.

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