An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated who conducted the interviews. This version has been corrected.
Date Lab: Blind date novice meets blind date pro
7:30 p.m., Clyde's, Alexandria
Daniel: I've never been on a blind date. Throughout the day, like when I was at Starbucks, I'd look at different, random people and go, What if that was her? How funny would that be if that's her?
Katie: I've been on dates where other people set me up. It's kind of fun. I figure at the very worst, it's just a couple of hours. On Match.com, I definitely found some people that weren't very outgoing.
Daniel: I got [to the restaurant] about 10 minutes early, so I just went to the bar and grabbed a beer. I was fiddling around on my BlackBerry, and then I caught a glimpse out of the corner of my eye of the host walking down with a young woman.
Katie: I saw him and thought he was an average, attractive kind of fellow, but I wasn't, like, Oh, my God, he's gorgeous. He's not bad-looking by any stretch of the imagination. He was very outgoing right away, and his personality made him very fun to talk to.
Daniel: I thought she was very cute, blonde, nice smile, great eyes -- she was definitely my type. I asked her if she wanted to have a drink with me at the bar, so she ordered a glass of wine, and I ordered another beer.
Katie: At first we talked a little about work and kind of went from there. There was no lag in the conversation. I think we both like to talk a lot, so I was pleasantly surprised. I feel like a lot of times on blind dates I've been on, I've had to do most of the talking.
Daniel: I really feel like I was talking so much! When I get excited, I talk a lot. Then we were like, "Well, we should probably go eat," so we went to the table.
Katie: I had salmon, and he had a crab cake. He seemed to have a pretty good sense of humor. At one point, he joked that we should jump in the koi pond outside the restaurant and take a picture in there, so he's just kind of goofy.
Daniel: I wish there was a little more flirting. I probably could've tried more.
Katie: We didn't have any dessert. I had to be up at quarter of 5 [that morning], and he had a flight at 7 o'clock [the next] morning, so we decided since it was a "school night" maybe we'd better meet up another time. I think weeknights [are] good for a first date, 'cause if you're not having a good time, it's a better excuse to leave than on a Friday night. If there had been an immediate connection or chemistry, I could've stayed awake. I just thought for the first date, after a couple of hours, that was enough.
Daniel: It was a little awkward at the end. She was engaged through the whole conversation, then [she] was just, like, "I'm ready to go." She got very hard to read. So we exchanged numbers, and then we hugged, and that was it.
Katie: I want to hang out with him, not on this set-up blind date, on a normal Friday night or whatever, to see if there [would be] more of a romantic connection. I would [give the date] a 4 [out of 5]. As dates go, it was a really fun first date.
Daniel: I give it a 4.25. I actually had a really good time, and I was very, very pleasantly surprised by Katie. She was a great girl.
-- Interviews by Elizabeth Terry
Update: Daniel called Katie, and they met up the following Sunday to watch a football game. The Redskins didn't fare well that day, and neither did the date -- both say there's just no spark.