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May 17, 2010 | by  | in Opinion | [ssba]

Salient Blind Date


Trying to morph my white-hot panic into a weird kind of misogynistic self-awareness, I approached the bartender and told him I was here for the Salient blind date. He pointed to a girl seated to my left, and poured me a gin and tonic. A good start. I turned to her and introduced myself, the threat of nervous suicide slowly subsiding as she turned out to be attractive, intelligent, personable, and probably as scared as me. We made small talk until we were comfortable enough that we weren’t going to stalk each other if things went south, and then started to get to know each other.

Turns out, her favourite book had been sitting on my bedside table for three months. This commonality out of the way, we swapped a top-five film list, and even touched on politics and religion without getting into a screaming match. She explained that she went on the date because she’d always wanted to write for Salient, but never had the courage to try to write something without a subject. I explained that I went on the date because I was desperate. She seemed to think that was a joke, and I pretended it was too as we both plowed through the bar tab.

After a few hours I called for a taxi to take her home. On the way there, she passed her phone to the front passenger seat for me to enter my number(!). When we got inside her flat, I was greeted with the worst Jim Morrison poster I’d seen in my entire life. That’s a pretty big call having worked in music stores for almost eight years. Luckily, it wasn’t hers. Neither was the picture of The Scream smoking a joint. I spent the next half-hour trying to decide whether or not to make a move, but luckily her flatmate arrived just in time to prevent me from embarrassing myself.

The date wasn’t as blind as we thought. Her flatmate mentioned someone I knew, and we began a social connect-the-dots. I got weirded out and excused myself for a minute, and came back to catch her and her flatmate saying something awkward. That sealed the deal for me, and she walked me to the door where we clumsily hugged. After a nearly sleepless night of Lynchian sex dreams, I managed to shake the hangover in time to meet up with her the next day—and if you’re reading, I’d really like to again.


Being the first “blind date” of the year, I was worried that nobody wrote in and that Sarah would have paid some crazy person to date me, just to make the article more interesting. That, or that she would have forced some poor guy at the Salient office to do it under threats and bribery. Hmmm.

My date was well dressed, friendly, and on time. He told me how much the bar tab was, and hearing this, I kind of wished I’d ordered something pricier instead of wine. We made up for it later with vodka and red bulls, gin and tonics (him) and I had the BEST COCKTAIL EVER. I don’t know what was in it but it was dessert in a cup.

My date and I talked about books, movies and our flatmates and we turned out to have a lot in common. He’s a self-proclaimed geek, and I earned his respect by liking DOS games, owning Arrested Development and by my favourite book being on his bedside table. He also said that he was going to decide 30 seconds in if I “was shit” and if I was shit, he would have been a horrible date to make the article more fun. I am always pleased to know I’m not shit. In fact he gave me some lovely compliments.

An hour or so in, he asked me to make the executive decision whether to get smashed or not. He having previously told me he had a test the next day, I decided not to get him in trouble. We didn’t finish the bar tab.

My date paid for the taxi back to my flat where he hung out with my flatmate and another friend, talked about Avatar being an abomination of a film, and what my date would do if the date symbol appeared in the sky and he had to run off and rescue some lonely women. He also almost stole my flatmate’s hat and Doors poster because they both sucked. We laughed lots and he got a second date. Whether there’s a spark, time will tell, but even if we just end up as friends it was worth going on the Salient blind date because I met an awesome person and had a really fun time. Bar tab doesn’t hurt either. Thanks Garden Bar!

Wanna go on a Salient blind date? Send some details about your ideal date, and a bit of info about yourself to

Remember to include your contact details (like your cellphone number!), so we can get in touch if you’re lucky enough to be going on a date. Oooh ah!


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