Date Lab

By Nina Patel
Sunday, November 22, 2009

7:30 p.m., Guajillo, Arlington

Dana: I was there 15 minutes early. I went to [the] bar to wait and got a drink.

Sangeeta: I walked in right at 7:30. When I first saw him I knew he was not my type, but I didn't want to be so quick to judge, because in the past, I dated someone who wasn't exactly my type and we ended up falling in love. I don't like facial hair. [And] I've usually gone out with someone who is older than me.

Dana: I introduced myself. She's attractive [and] had a really great smile. After I was a little more comfortable, I used my teensy little bit of Hindi, but apparently the way I say "How are you?" is completely different than the way she said it. I thought, Wow, I've been saying it wrong all these years. She made me feel better -- she was like, "It's not too bad." We ordered maybe 15 minutes in. I told her point-blank that I am not Latino. I wanted to clarify that because I did not want to look like an idiot that is Latino but does not speak Spanish to the server.

Sangeeta: I don't speak Hindi fluently, but I know how to say "hello, how are you, my name is ..." I asked what his ethnicity was, and he said "a little bit of everything."

Dana: We talked about where we were from. She asked me where I went to school.

Sangeeta: He told me he didn't finish college. I don't think I'm that person to judge, but we live in a society today where you need a degree. It's a preference of mine. He did wear an Obama "Hope" pin, which is fine because I am an Obama supporter, but I thought it was ballsy of him to display that on a first date. For all he knew, I could have been a staunch Republican.

Dana: It was on my suit coat, on my lapel like an American flag pin. I was like, I might as well throw it out there.

Sangeeta: He talked a lot. His voice is very deep, and he kind of mumbles. I had a hard time understanding him at times. I think there were some things he said that he probably shouldn't have said or maybe thought twice about.

Dana: I know I said things that took her aback. I don't have much of a switch.

Sangeeta: When I moved back to D.C., I lived with my sister and her husband, and they ended up splitting up. Later on, [Dana and I] were talking about which parent we resemble, and I said, "I am just like my mom." He asked me if I had a picture and I pulled up [one on] my cellphone. He said something like the expression on her face looked like she just found out about my sister getting a divorce. I thought, Where did that come from? And why was that necessary?

Dana: I did have a couple of times you could say I put my foot in my mouth, [but] I don't think I'm a bumbling oaf who walks around having no sensitivities. The conversation was seamless, but I didn't sense a spark. I definitely flirted. I'm a flirter by nature. She has this little curl right above her upper lip [and] when she starts to smile it's more pronounced. It was something I thought was very attractive. She said no one had noticed that before. I said, "Really? Because it's very cute."

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