About the daters ...
John: To be able to run super fast.
Lizard: The ability to float above the ground, because then I would never trip. Don’t believe the myth — dancers are not graceful.
John: Check in on the orphan I adopted in Africa on Skype via the laptop I bought him.
Lizard: Take my dog out and get coffee.
John: I’ve been called a tall drink of water by more than a few people. I’m a really good dancer, and I’m in a band called Sextillion. I’m an amateur arborist. I’m a world traveler — and I’m not talking Cancun.
Lizard: Smart, attractive, great dancer, extremely loyal, deep thinker. And I make killer sweet potato maple syrup biscuits.
John: Active, brilliant, quick on her feet, total babe.
Lizard: Not too tall, fit, dark hair, serious with a sense of humor, thinker, world-changer, obviously unique.
John: Urban forestry, biking, seeing live music, traveling and cooking.
Lizard: Going out dancing, music … must like dogs.
About the date ...
7:30 p.m., Coppi’s, U Street
Lizard: I got there first. Right at 7:30, John showed up. He’s cute with a really nice smile.
John: She’s really cute. She’s petite and has a really pretty face. We shook hands and sat down. We ordered a bottle of wine and started talking. I was surprised to hear she had driven in from near Harpers Ferry. It sounds like she’s got a great place out in the woods.
Lizard: Where I live is pretty rural, so anywhere I go is a bit of a drive. It might seem like more of a drive to someone that’s in an urban area. It does [make it harder to meet people] in a certain way. I’m not going to meet someone walking down the street, but because of what I do, I’m out a lot. I meet people through work.
John: She and her mom are part of a small aerial dancing troupe. They use trapezes and fabric as props to be higher off the ground than a traditional dancer on the floor. I was impressed and really curious.
Lizard: A lot of people aren’t quite sure what it is. He asked a lot of questions and he seemed really interested in it. We decided we should order some food. He offered me some of his, but I’m a vegetarian, so I passed. We didn’t dwell on [my being a vegetarian]. I really appreciated that, because sometimes people can be defensive about it. They want to know why, or they talk about why they eat meat.
John: We talked about travel. She spent some time in Ireland and Bulgaria. I was in India and Pakistan and Turkey last year. A good friend and I just picked India as a starting point and went from there. Travel is important. It says a lot about someone and whether they’re comfortable being outside of their environment.
Lizard: He spent about seven months traveling. It’s unusual that someone gets to take that much time and just wander. He became an extra in a Bollywood movie when he was [in India], which was just really different.
John: In Mumbai, the Bollywood people troll through the hostels for white people. My friend and I were recruited to play colonists for one episode of this TV show.
Lizard: He asked me if I had a dog. I do. His roommate has one. Apparently, ferrets are a deal breaker for him. I told him I have donkeys. He wanted to know how I acquired them and what they eat.
John: It’s intriguing. It’s a stark contrast from my day-to-day life. Apparently, you can’t really ride them, but they are friendly and you can touch them.
Lizard: We ordered a dessert to share and kept talking. I don’t think there was a ton of flirting, but I was more reserved than I would have been in another situation. I was aware of the fact that this was very public.
John: She didn’t really seem nervous or reserved. She seemed quite calm and interested in talking. That helped me. It was kind of hard to tell [if there was chemistry]. It wasn’t, like, fireworks or lightning bolts. But considering that we had just met, I felt very comfortable around her.
Lizard: After we finished dessert, we realized that we hadn’t gotten the cameras. We joked about how we should do the pictures. After that, we called it a night. It was almost 10:30.
John: She had to drive all the way back, so I walked her to her car.
Lizard: As we were walking out, he asked if I wanted to hang out again. I said yes and gave him my number. He put it into his phone and we parted ways.
John: After I walked off, I realized I completely forgot to ask her about her name and its origins. I texted her about it. I’m kind of curious.
Lizard: It was kind of refreshing that he didn’t ask. Rebecca [is my] legal name. My middle name is Elizabeth and it grew out of that. It’s what I’ve been called by everyone, including my parents, since I was 9. I didn’t tell him that. I texted him back and told him it was a story for next time.
John: I would give the date a 4 [out of 5]. I think it would be fun to go out dancing with her. I think the missing component was interacting, not just sitting across the table from each other. [The distance] doesn’t concern me. It’s exciting that she lives out in the woods. I’ll have to talk her into letting me check out the donkeys.
Lizard: I’d give it a 4. There weren’t fireworks, but I know those things develop. I’m not necessarily looking for someone who has donkeys or does aerial dancing but for someone with a few unusual traits. I feel like I’ll be better understood. There were a few things about him that stuck out, like being an extra in a Bollywood film and his travels. I want to get to know him a little more.
UPDATE: John took a trip out to Lizard’s neck of the woods. He didn’t meet the donkeys; instead, they spent the day wandering along the Potomac River and grabbing a bite to eat. Alas, despite a good time, Lizard reports that no romantic spark materialized.
Nominate a friend for Date Lab! Reach us at email@example.com or on Twitter @datelab or Facebook and tell us why he or she is a great catch.