Date Lab: Some tables for two are better than others
7:30 p.m., La Frontera Cantina, Dupont Circle
Scott: I got there first and sat at a table outside. She walked in, and I heard her say she was with The Washington Post. I thought she was cute. She was blond with a nice smile. Nice smiles go a long way.
Jilian: I got there, and the host said, "I think he's over there." I walked over to this blond guy who was way better looking than I expected. I don't like guys who are too skinny. He has a nice, athletic build. I could tell right away that he was confident, and for me that's a huge plus.
Scott: I got up to give her a hug. I was hoping she would do the same. A handshake for a date is kind of awkward. It's just formal. A hug is more relaxed. She went for it, so that was cool.
Jilian: Right away, we talked about how we both grew up in the area. We found out we have friends in common. We were sitting outside having drinks and talking, and this woman came up to us. She said, "I think you are the cutest couple I've ever seen." I said thanks, and he said, "Thank you; that's such a compliment."
Scott: We just laughed it off and joked about whether it was [someone from] The Post or not. [Editor's note: Nope!]
Jilian: He asked me what I wanted to eat. I threw out a few ideas. He was really easygoing. We shared everything. We were sitting outside for maybe a half-hour when it started raining. We were moving inside [and] sat at this table right by the window. The chairs were on the same side, and we were staring out at the rain.
Scott: When we were outside, we were sitting across from each other. When we went inside, we were sitting at a circular table and were closer. Psychologically, it just helped change the dynamics. It was more flirtatious. It was comfortable, smooth, natural.
Jilian: There weren't any awkward silences. We talked about a broad spectrum of things. We talked about our families. We talked a lot about college. We talked about studying abroad and traveling, being in a sorority and fraternity, and football games.
Scott: We talked about what we would have done if the other person was weird on the date. She said she would just talk nonstop and not let the other person talk. I said I would make full use of the $125 tab. We had a few margaritas with dinner. I found out she likes tequila. So I got us each a tequila shot. It was dessert for the meal.
Jilian: We were there until 9:30 or so. He said, "Do you want to grab another drink?" I said, "Sure, why not?" We went to Cleveland Park, because we both have friends who live there and we know the area. I called my friend. He called one of his friends, but they weren't going out for the night. When we were on our way to Cleveland Park, he asked me for my number. He asked me if we would like to go out again, and I said yes.
Scott: Our friends had each said [before the date that] if it goes well, we'll meet up. We met up with her friends at Cleveland Park Bar & Grill. We had a drink and talked about Maryland and crab cakes and football. It was nice. It didn't really change things. We left the bar around midnight.
Jilian: He helped me hail a cab home. We hugged goodnight, and then he kissed me on the cheek. He texted me to make sure I had gotten home. It was really nice.
Scott: It was a very good date. I'd give it the date a 5 [out of 5]. There was chemistry. It was easygoing and casual. I texted her the next morning and said I hope she didn't have a hangover. I'm sure we'll go out again.
Jilian: I would give the date a 5. He was someone I was comfortable with in terms of friendship, but there was attraction and a spark. Our personalities clicked, and I found him attractive. We laughed a lot. It didn't feel like a first date. It felt like someone I had been hanging out with for a while.
Interviews by Kelly DiNardo
UPDATE: Scott and Jilian have talked since the date but haven't gotten together again ... because she's now in the process of moving to Texas for work. Say it ain't so! Here's hoping their paths cross again someday for a second date.