Alcohol

the worst type of first date.

Why coffee dates are terrible plus an inadvertent ode to brunch (and wine).

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It could be love… (Photo taken at Kava Cafe.)

Q: “Hey. Well, if Wednesday night doesn’t suit you we could just go for coffee?”
A: “Hmm. Let me take a moment to think about this… Umm. No. HELL NO!!!!”

I’m sorry to say it, but the thought of going for coffee on a first date makes me feel mildly nauseated. I would go so far as to say that it would be my least favourite first date activity imaginable. Coffee date first dates are The. Worst.

Am I over-reacting? Definitely. But let me explain why, my caffeine loving friend.

Now, those of you who know me In Real Life will probably already be looking a bit confused. Perhaps those of you who don’t know me In Real Life should be looking confused too. See, there are some things you should know about me:

  1. I love coffee (I think it’s in my veins.)
  2. I love cafés.
  3. I love going to new, interesting cafés.
  4. I love spending lots of time in said cafés.
  5. I can’t whistle for sh!t.

So, you’d forgive any gent for thinking, “Great! Let’s go get coffee!”
But to which I’ll be thinking, “No! Please, no!”
(Cue: that confused face I was talking about.)

Here’s the issue with going for coffee on a first date:

1. The intensity!
Not of the coffee, per se, but that there is nothing to hide any awkward, nervous silence with. Picture this: you and I go out for coffee. We meet at a café at 11am. A waiter takes our order at 11.05am and we have our coffees by 11.15am. So far, so good. However! I like to drink my coffee whilst it’s hot – tepid just won’t cut it. Thus, by 11.18am my coffee’s gone and if our coffee date lasts for an average of 1.5 hours then I have… 72 minutes by myself! 72 minutes!! I may be lucky and have a glass of water to occupy me, but there is really nothing to use as a prop or filler for those inevitable first date awkward moments. Look, basically I’m nervous and I want something to (literally) hold on to that isn’t an empty latte glass.

It’s different if it’s not the first date because you already know the other person a bit and there are generally fewer nerves involved seeing as you’ve already been able to ascertain that they are not a serial killer and that they do, indeed, like cheese. All of the essentials. 

2. The blatant lack of alcohol.
I enjoy alcohol (especially if it’s in the form of a whisky sour or glass of cab sav) and coffee dates don’t typically involve alcohol. Here’s why that’s a problem: I can guarantee that our date will be more enjoyable if there is alcohol involved because alcohol makes me happy and calms my first date nerves. (Ok, at least I’ll find it more enjoyable!) And yes, I know that I am sounding like a self-centred alcoholic in the making, but just trust me: on a first date with a girl named Alex beverages of the alcoholic variety are a very wise idea.

3. The lack of originality.
I apologise if I sound like I’m high maintenance, but, seeing as it’s our first date, aren’t we trying to impress each other a little? Well, if so then, quite frankly, a latte isn’t probably the best way to going about doing so. Unless we went on some amazing little cafe scavenger hunt – that would be fun! Except…

4 …I’m only going to drink one coffee.
Therefore, the dilemma is not going to be solved by just ordering another coffee every ten minutes. Whereas, if we were getting (alcoholic) beverages then I wouldn’t have any qualms about ordering another glass of wine… (See: Point 2 and Alex’s Appreciation of Alcohol, 2014).

Thankfully, there is a very simple solution to this conundrum: Food. And not just any food:

Brunch. Brunch is the answer, bunnies.

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I’m pretty sure that no date has ever suffered from the addition of French toast… Just saying.
(Photo taken at the Belaroma Coffee Centre.)

Why? Well, not only do have some time fillers with menu deliberation and chewing, but you also get to devour something which is hopefully delicious. Because frankly, if the date isn’t that great at least you can come away with a happy stomach. Priorities, people. Which is why I would like to suggest that brunch is the answer to our collective quandary. Poached eggs with smoked salmon and avocado on toast to fill those conversation gaps? Hey – why not turn that into conversation itself! You could, for example, discuss whether you’re a classicist (bacon and eggs) or an avant-garde (quinoa porridge) bruncher.

Now, those of you who are rational and measured may be thinking, ”But brunch costs more than just coffee. What if I’m not rolling in it? What if I don’t want to potentially pay for my date too?” Good questions, buddy. This is one of the reasons why brunch is good! Yes, it will cost more than a $3.5* flat white, but brunch is generally quite a bit cheaper than going out for lunch or dinner, with plenty of options between $7.5-15. I’d suggest viewing it, regardless of the date, as an investment in your own happiness.

And when it comes to who pays? Personally, I’m more than happy to pay for myself and I’ll always offer to do so. If any of you darlings encounter someone who assumes that you’re going to pay for them then perhaps you should send them my way and I’ll be happy to inform them that he or she is being a bit of a twat.

And, on that note, I am going to go and indulge my love of wild mushroom bruschetta.

Happy brunching.

Alex x

* All prices in AUD, lovers.

An editorial aside: Please note that this is most definitely a sponsored post because I am a Really Big Deal who is being showered in endorsement opportunities. Duh.

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prosecco.

An open letter.
From: my feeling-sorry-for-myself-this-morning self.
To: my beverage-consuming self last night.

Good morning, peach.

Hey. 

So. Let’s chat.

Must we?

Yes. Definitely.

Wait. Which Alex is which? 

I’m not sure. I guess it feels like I’m going to be the school principal and you’re going to be the recalcitrant, rebellious student. Is that ok?

Yeah, whatever. Let’s just get this over with.

Now, Alex –

My brain hurts.

I was talking. Do you mind not interrupting?

(Glares.)

And there’s no need to glare at me, thanks.

(Continues glaring.) 

Yeah, so about your brain hurting. Perhaps, just perhaps, you need to rethink your approach to house parties.

Uhh. Why??

Well, we could start with that ‘brain-hurting’ thing you mentioned. The one where it feels like you’re slowly spinning in dizzy circles.

(Raises eyebrow haughtily) Mmmhmm? Well, perhaps it was worth it, thank you very much, you killjoy.

Note your use of the word ‘perhaps’. Ok, if not the head, how about the nauseated stomach?

Nothing that Vita-Weats and green tea couldn’t fix.* 

Or you could have had something a bit more interesting for breakfast.

Whatever.

Ok. How about the fact that your clothes are covered in dog hair?

I love that gorgeous canine, ok? And he’s old and he isn’t going to be around forever, so I think that he and I have established that it’s ok for me to use him as a pillow when I stumble in at 3am. The clothes? Yeah, I’ll have to pick each hair out one by one, but that dog pillow is worth it.

You don’t have anything better to do with your time than to pick each individual dog hair off your clothes? Wow. You’re fun.

Shut up, you. You evidently have nothing better to do with your time than to berate me.

Touché… but how about your suede heels?

Ok. I do concede that I will, from now on, avoid wearing suede heels to house parties. Thankfully, they are black and thus, they shall be relatively easy to clean.

You don’t say. They’d be beyond help if they were beige.

God forbid. I’m not that much of an idiot, thanks.

Good luck with the green stain on them, by the way.

I have no idea what this is. Actually, I think it could be an avocado dip… which I didn’t even eat. Let’s move on. Anything else you want to add from up there on your high horse?

Oh, yes, actually.

FFS.

Shame about your gorgeous bracelet smashing.

Yeah, actually it is. Do you have to remind me of the fact that I’m going to have to get it repaired RIGHT now?

Did you find all of the beads?

I think so. It wasn’t even my fault. Well, ok. I kind of tripped. Well, I thought that I could steady myself on the (closed) door behind me. But, as it turns out, it was open. And then my poor bracelet took the impact. I think I may have landed on it. 

(Raises eyebrow) Not your fault? Right. Yeah. Totally.

(Crosses arms across her chest.) Well, it wasn’t deliberate.

Ok. And how about have to pay for a taxi ALLL the way home because catching a bus was going to be too much like hard work for your non-sober self?

Yes, not ideal considering my current financial state. Thanks for the reminder, you cow. But it’s just $50. Not ideal, but not the end of the world either. It’s better to get home safely and to hurt the bank account than to not get home safely in the name of saving some money.

Oh, aren’t you virtuous. Well, look out world: Alex is the fountain of all wisdom.

At least I’m not as infuriating as you.

At least I’m not a bad friend.

Ouch.

But it’s true, isn’t it?

This is really unnecessary.

Oh, but I think it is, in fact, very necessary.

(Silence.)

You really hurt her, you know. She may not be one to wear her emotions on her sleeve (or her face like you do), but that doesn’t mean that what you did didn’t hurt her. Because it did. And you really went too far.
Poor form, Alex. Poor form.

(No rebuttal.)

What the hell were you thinking, Alex? Sometimes you act like your relationship means so little to you.

That is not true. I love her to pieces.

Well, act like it, dammit!

I’m really sorry.

Don’t say that to me. Say it to her.

Ok.

One last thing.

Oh, shut up.

I promise it’ll be the last thing I say.

(Sighs with exasperation.) What? What now??

See you next weekend?

(Raises her hand, clenching the first, second, fourth and fifth digits.)

Alex x

* As an aside: I do wish that my anti-nausea remedy was more interesting, but Vita-Weats it is.