The Washington Post

Date Lab: She can be ridiculous, but he’s not scared


About the daters:

Desert-island DVDs ...

Chris: “Office Space,” “Dumb & Dumber,” “Arlington Road.”

Katie: “Animal House,” “Caddyshack,” “Joe Versus the Volcano.”

Happiest when ...

Chris: Making others laugh or watching Redskins football.

Katie: Traveling.

Your type ...

Chris: Although I’m black, I tend to date white. I prefer someone with a religious background who doesn’t smoke, not a heavy drinker, someone who likes sports, likes to laugh, is smart and has a positive outlook on life.

Katie: Two types: 1) 6’+, blond, blue-eyed, athletic, conservative and dorky intellectual in the same way I am. 2) 5’10’’+, African American, very athletic, smart, funny, loves sports as much as I do.

Interests to share ...

Chris: Sports, political views, reading

Katie: Athletic pursuits, both doing and watching (running, swimming, hiking, biking, tennis, football, softball, golf), intellectual pursuits (Smithsonian Associates lectures, park ranger battlefield tours) and travel.

The date: Geppetto Restaurant, Bethesda, 7:30 p.m.

Katie: It was Mardi Gras, and I was kind of excited about that. I was in New Orleans last April for Jazzfest [and] have lots of beads hanging around, so I just tossed some in my purse. As I was walking up [to the restaurant], I could see one guy sitting by himself. I was like, “Oh, good! The Post paid attention to the kind of guy that I was interested in.”

Chris: I live in Germantown, but I work in Burke. With traffic, I thought I should just head right [to the restaurant], and I got there about an hour early. I wanted to be early — not that early, but I would have been anxious had I been late. I actually hadn’t noticed her walking in until she walked up to the table. I kind of half stood up and shook her hand. I thought she was cute, and I guess I was relieved that she seemed like my type. She said “Happy Mardi Gras” [and] gave me some beads. That was very cool.

Katie: I was just like, Yay, he’s cute! He has really pretty eyes. I was trying not to stare. He was totally friendly; he didn’t seem anxious at all. We immediately jumped into conversation.

Chris: I’m introverted, but I like to be with someone outgoing who can bring that out of me, and she seemed like that kind of person right off the bat. She was very, I don’t know if silly’s the right word, but she had a good sense of humor. It took the edge off. We just chitchatted about how our days had gone and what we both [do] for a living, initially. She was talking about her last Mardi Gras, how [her date] was 45 minutes late and she’d already had several beers before he got there, and I started thinking, Uh-oh, I’m not much of a drinker; I might not be her type. But then she was describing how she likes to go to lectures at the Smithsonian, she was a math nerd and she volunteered as a mentor for a junior high kid. Then in the next breath, [she told me] how she [joined] two touch-football leagues in Arlington because local leagues aren’t competitive enough for her. She’s a very multilayered person.

Katie: We talked about everything. I tend to talk a lot; there were a couple of points where he was like: “Okay, I feel like you’ve talked a lot. Ask me a question!” I was impressed and surprised [to learn] that he’s a director for a preschool, because he’s a guy, and because he’s young, too. Running, basically, an entire organization is very cool. I called him the King of the Toddlers. We talked about what makes us happy. He’s a huge Redskins fan, so I made fun of the Redskins, and he was like, “You know all about sports; you’re like a dude!” And I said, “FYI, calling your date a dude might not go over that well; keep that in mind!”

Chris: Not to sound sexist, but I was very surprised that she knew as much as she knew. Very cool. I had a coffee [with] Kahlua and Bailey’s, which I normally wouldn’t have, which was really, really good.

Katie: He was up for anything. I was like “Try the calamari,” and he was like, “Okay, let’s do that.” ... “Have a Bailey’s in your cappucino.” He was like, “Okay!” It’s one of those things where I tended to be a little ridiculous, and he wasn’t frightened by it like some people could be.

Chris: We had dessert and just got the check. She teaches an [exercise] class in the morning, and I have to be up really early for my job. We exchanged numbers, then we hugged, and we went our separate ways.

Katie: He texted me on his way home [and] said that he had a really wonderful time and wanted to see me again soon. I texted him back, “Me too,” and also that it was great meeting the King of the Toddlers. I’d give [the date] a 4.5 [out of 5]. I had so much fun. The only reason it’s not higher is because The Post couldn’t arrange a date between me and [NFL player] James Harrison.

Chris: I’d give it a 4.5 at least, maybe even a 5. She’s a really intelligent person, she’s pretty, we got along really well. Normally, I don’t go out on a weekday, but it just totally, completely worked.

UPDATE: A week later, Chris went over to Katie’s place for dinner and a movie. They’ve been texting ever since, and both say they’d like to find time in their hectic schedules to get together again. Is this the start of a romance? Says Katie: “I’m not sure yet, [but] I’m willing to give it a shot! We just really seem to have a good time.”

Jazz lovers wanted! Apply now at datelab.washpost.com. Find out what else we’re up to at facebook.com/datelab and follow us on Twitter: @datelab.

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