About the daters ...
Matt: Experiencing a pleasant dose of randomness in my life ... while having a few other stable things. When I am watching live, swingin’ jazz. When I am walking outside under huge oak trees. When I am with someone I really care about, outside.
Katie: When I am outside near trees, or teaching in my classroom, or cooking for my friends, or petting a dog, or singing and playing guitar. ... It’s hard to say, I find a lot of joy in a lot of places.
Matt: Anne Hathaway look-alike . . . Tall, in shape, fair skin, long-haired brunettes. Kinda dorky in a sense that they like talking about things other than purses and shoes. Pleasantly sexy and graceful in the way they hold themselves.
Katie: Loves the outdoors and dogs, really smart, liberal, confident, enjoys traveling and good food. Not someone who craves attention and is a drama queen. A kind person. Someone who wears old jeans and no gel in his hair.
Matt: Why does it really matter? You look great in either!
Katie: Phew. That means he might have a hoodie I could borrow one day if I’m cold when we’re hanging out.
About the date ...
7:30 p.m., Rosemary’s Thyme Bistro, Dupont Circle
Katie: My grandma, who’s 93, is a huge fan of Date Lab. [It’s] very important to her that I meet someone and settle down. She’s always keeping her eyes open — I was in a wedding a couple weeks ago, and she was there keeping an eye on the groomsmen. Her and my mother!
Matt: I had a good day at work, and afterward I went and bought myself a new sweater. Girls like soft sweaters. [I] got there right at 7:30. They gave us a nice window seat, and I ordered a Manhattan — thought it would be a good way to loosen up.
Katie: The manager took me over. I seated myself, and we started talking right away, really friendly. My drink is a dirty vodka martini with olives, so I was really glad to see that he was starting with a cocktail. He’s cute. I’m not into super-metro guys with gel in their hair, and he didn’t look like that at all. He was comfortable.
Matt: She was very calm and confident. She’s definitely attractive, I love brunettes, and she’s tall. [But] I didn’t feel initial romantic attraction. I guess she wasn’t as petite as I like. We just started talking right off the bat, and she asked me, “So, what do you like to do?” Which is cool, because a lot of people first ask you, “What’s your job?”
Katie: D.C. people are so focused about what you do for work, [but] for me it’s really important to find out what someone’s passionate about. I was so glad I [asked], because he’s really into jazz, and it was so cool to hear him talk about it. We’ve both been playing piano since we were little, so it was cool to get to talk about music.
Matt: We went pretty well back and forth asking questions. I was really impressed by her description of her teaching. A lot of the kids ask questions like, “Why do we revolve around the sun?” or “What is gravity?” They think she knows all the answers. So that was pretty funny to hear about. We talked about how important it is to really find what you want to do, and not just sit around and let 30 years go by.
Katie: I [was having] a really good time, but I don’t feel like there was a spark. He didn’t really make any moves, so I think he was just having a good time, too.
Matt: One of our desserts had a bourbon whipped cream on it, and I said, “I want to put whipped cream on your nose.” So I took the whipped cream, put it on her nose, and the server took a picture of it. She’s very open to just about everything.
Katie: I was like, “Go for it.” [But] I don’t think I even would want whipped cream, or cake, put on my face, like, at my wedding. [The goofy pictures are] fine, but that’s not something that I would normally want to do on a date. I feel like we’re in two different places.
Matt: By the time we left the restaurant, it was probably 11:30. Earlier we’d talked about Occupy D.C. I said, “You should see this.” We actually walked all the way from Rosemary’s Thyme to [McPherson Square]. I was very impressed that she could walk that far [over a mile] in high heels.
Katie: I found him pretty similar politically; he was open-minded. I’m interested in politics and activism and protests, so I was really interested to go see it.
Matt: We talked to a couple of the people there. One of the girls talked about education reform and told Katie that she should walk out, tell her students to walk out and not take those tests the government administers. I don’t know if that’s the best way to handle it, but it was interesting.
Katie: They were extremely willing to talk to us. They were really happy to share what they were doing and wanted people to be aware and come visit and camp out and be part of it.
Matt: From there, we walked all the way back to Rosemary’s Thyme, because she’d parked about a block away. She offered me a ride home [and] drove me back to Capitol Hill. It was close to 1. We exchanged information, and I gave her a hug. We left it at: Maybe we should get together again sometime, I think just in the capacity of friends.
Katie: I hadn’t been looking at my phone. When I got back in, I saw there were eight text messages [from my mother]. I called her and let her know I had a good time. [I’d give the date] a 3.5 [out of 5]. I think he would be a really good friend to have, but people who go on Date Lab are probably looking for more than a friend.
Matt: I would give it a 4. I think we were a really good match, as far as our interests were concerned. [But] a 5 for me would have been something like: Wow. I didn’t feel like that.
UPDATE: They exchanged texts the day after, but that was it. “I don’t see us going out again, to be honest,” Matt said. Katie agreed that the spark wasn’t there. Sorry, Grandma, we tried.
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