Pittsburgh native Natalie Adams is a 22-year-old media assistant at a public relations and lobbying firm who moved to the area in July. This “open-minded” gal digs Bruce Springsteen, Brussels sprouts, recreational ballet and the Pittsburgh Penguins. David Myers, 27, is a business analyst who moved from New York to Washington in September. This “playful” guy digs boxing, baking, biking and a “girl-next-door” who can keep pace with this “aggressive urbanite” (translation: very fast walker).
While David and Natalie have dabbled in online dating, they’ve mostly been in longer-term relationships. Natalie ended a five-plus-year relationship in 2016. David ended a two-year relationship in May.
His penchant for long-term dating might be explained by the zodiac. “I’m a Cancer,” he told me, tongue-in-cheek. “They are very emotional and passionate about who they are involved with. Once I fall for someone, I really fall for them.” As for Natalie, who is Catholic, she said “nice Jewish boys” are her type. But she adds, “I’m absolutely open-minded” about dating outside of that box.
We sent Natalie and David to Penn Commons, a trendy American tavern in Penn Quarter. While sipping cocktails (an Old Fashioned for her, a Manhattan for him), they got over their initial awkwardness and had a conversation that went beyond the basics. Natalie told me: “We talked about why we loved our home towns. I think you can tell a lot about a person by how they talk about their home town.” David felt the same way: “She went into an eloquent explanation of all the unique sights, foods and things to do in Pittsburgh. She did a really good job of drawing me in.” He told me he found her enthusiasm and way with words “very attractive.”
While noshing on fried risotto fritters and a trio of dips, they discovered that they were both political junkies who had interned on the Hill, enjoy cooking and like exploring cities — though their approaches differ. David loves creating “elaborate Google maps” that feature his rigorous research of unique things to see, eat and drink. Natalie, on the other hand, likes to “live in the moment rather than thinking seven steps ahead” and enjoys “finding a good off-the-beaten-path restaurant that not a lot of people know about.” They also talked about their families. Natalie told me, “I’m not the type of person who wants to reveal very personal information about my family on a first date, but I felt comfortable telling him about my mom’s death [four years ago] and that my dad was getting remarried.”
David had a lot of admiration for her. “It takes a lot of strength when you lose a parent at an early age,” he said, adding, “She’s very mature, more so than most people my age.” While they shared their main courses of a bison burger and scallops, the talk turned to football. Natalie is a diehard Steelers fan, and David couldn’t resist a little flirtatious smack talk against her favorite team, Natalie said with a laugh. “I was surprised that he would say a team that I really liked was going to lose on a first date — but the conversation was fun.”
They finished dinner at 10 and decided to continue the date at Rocket Bar on Seventh Street NW because David had a hankering for a little competitive Skee-Ball. Over the next hour, they sipped beer, she beat him, 2-1, and they shared a kiss — well, several kisses. Natalie said that she knew she wanted to kiss him “somewhere in the middle of the date.” David was glad that he made the move because “a kiss is the universal sign that the date is going better than I expect it’s going.”
He got her number as he walked her to her Uber ride and said good night.
After I told David when Natalie’s birthday is, he said: “Ooooh, she’s an Aries. That is a bad match.” With a laugh, he continued: “I feel like that’s my type though. The addendum to ‘the girl-next-door’ is that she’s also cosmically not the best match, but it seems like what I’m drawn to.”
David: 4 [out of 5]. “I definitely want to see her again — in a non-Date Lab setting.”
Natalie: 4.5. “We both had fun, got along well, had good food and great conversation — what more can you ask for?”
Natalie said that they went on a second date but that she doubts there will be another one.