(Photograph courtesy daters)

Hail to the Date Lab! We reached out to former Washington Redskin and current ESPN 980 radio host Chris Cooley. We sent him Tyler’s application, along with the applications of four women, and asked him to make a match. So how did Cooley decide on Rachel? “She said she’d drink any beer on tap, and she said she was comfortable wearing a T-shirt and jeans anywhere,” Cooley says. “I think the coolest girls are ones that can just hang out wearing a T-shirt and jeans. Also, he seems like he’s a funny dude, and she has a sarcastic sense of humor, so I thought that would help them get along.”

We know Cooley was a playmaker, but is he a matchmaker? We sent Tyler and Rachel to Alexandria’s Bistro at Restaurant Eve to find out.

Tyler: I was pretty calm going into [the date]. I’m just a pretty carefree person; I knew that the situation was potentially super awkward, so might as well just embrace it, have fun. [Knowing Chris Cooley was our matchmaker] gave me a little extra vote of confidence. Captain Chaos wouldn’t do me wrong!

(Photographs of Chris Cooley by John McDonnell; Michael Jackson, left, by JoerG Sarbach/Associated Press; Eric Church Courtesy of the artist; eagle by Ricky Carioti; elephant by Bigstock; George Washington, left, by National Portrait Gallery via Associated Press; Nelson Mandela by Michael Hutchins/Reuters; Donald Trump by Ali Goldstein/NBC Universal; Jennifer Lawrence by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images)

Rachel: We did a weird, awkward hug in the entryway, and then we went to our table. It was a relief; he was cute, so that was good. Tall, dark hair, definitely my type. He was very relaxed, so that helped. He had heard that this restaurant was pretty well known for their cocktails, so we ordered drinks right away. They both were lit on fire, so that was a nice icebreaker.

Tyler: She was attractive, great smile, very well-put-together. I’d say that she’s right in line with my type. She looked friendly, and after talking to her she had the exact same mind-set: [that] she was just gonna have a good time. We had a lot of things in common, it turned out.

Rachel: We just talked about the usual stuff: work, family. We both, it seems, are really big into family, like I’m close with my siblings, and he was talking a lot about his niece, so we had that common thread. And his mom’s a teacher, and I’m a teacher, so we both understood a little bit of that. And he has a really good sense of humor. I definitely was [attracted to him]. For sure. He’s tall, my type, with a good personality to match, definitely very laid-back, which made the evening easy and comfortable.

Tyler: As we talked I felt more at ease; it was more of a connection established the more we talked and figured out what each of us were into. We’re both from the area, so we talked about our families, what we’ve been up to this summer. We didn’t get hung up on anything like politics, didn’t even come up, which was great. We were just talking about fun things.

She has an identical twin, and at one point I was asking her if she’d ever made a switch or was planning on making some sort of switch in the bathroom, which would have been entertaining. It could have happened, and I don’t even know!

Rachel: Halfway through dinner, he was like, “So, you want to go somewhere else after this? Should we make that decision?” And I said, “Yeah, sure, that would be great.” We ended up grabbing beers at two other bars [after dinner].


Tyler:I got her number, and she gave me a little kiss goodnight. I had an excellent time, fun evening, so I’m going to give [the date] a 5 [out of 5].

Rachel: There was a kiss. So that was good! I guess [we have] tentative plans for a second date now. Nothing certain, just plans to make plans. I’m going to go ahead and give [the date]
a 5! Hopefully that will be a good omen for [the Redskins’ season].
Chris Cooley, good job.

Chris Cooley: I would’ve been really surprised if they didn’t end up going on a second date. She was by far the most compatible with him of the applicants you guys sent me. She seemed like a really cool girl.

E-mail us at wpmagazine@washpost.com

UPDATE: Well, Chris Cooley was right. Rachel and Tyler did end up going out on a second date, meeting up for dinner about a week after their first date. They both said they enjoyed it, but as of press time didn’t have any plans to see each other again. Apparently, Captain Chaos can work only so much magic.