Big News… of the first date sort

Ok, y’all. I have a date on Thursday and I’m trying hard not to talk myself out of it. I mean, I want to go. Of course I do. Right? I put an ad out there (on okcupid), he responded, I responded to his response, we’ve been making witty repartee for a couple weeks (too long! I know, but I’m such a nervous twit, I kept putting off the whole meeting-in-person thing), things are going well.

But in addition to my general level of… oh, what should I call it? Panic? … relating to dating, I have a legitimate problem: I have nothing to wear.

Or, alternatively, I have everything to wear.

The argument for the “nothing to wear” camp is strong. I packed weirdly, in moving to this intentional community. I dedicated my closet to comfort and thought not too much about little things like “cuteness” or “seductiveness”. You think I’m kidding? Here’s a complete list of the pants and skirts I brought with me:

  1. Five pairs of Old Navy’s Smoked Jersey Gauchos. These look surprisingly good, for pants that have the mother of all elastic waists and cost $9.99. If it were warm out, I’d throw on this t-shirt and call it a day.
  2. Four pairs of jeans. Two are so old they have holes in them. One is the notoriously stinky Right Fit jeans from Lane Bryant. One is lovely, Calvin Klein, but they need hemming (seriously? I’m nearly six feet tall and they need hemming?) and, um, yeah, I’ve been here for two months and I haven’t gotten around to that yet.
  3. A floaty, cotton, hugely seasonally inappropriate skirt from The Gap.
  4. No more. That’s all.

I also have an overabundance of dresses. Just where, exactly, did I think I was going to wear dresses? Here’s what I do every day: I eat breakfast. I clean up after breakfast (clean up after 60 people, that is – this is a messy thing, not just wiping the Cheerios I spilled on the counter into the trash can). I go to community meeting. I nap. I eat lunch. I rake leaves. I sit around and think about God. I email people about what I’m thinking about God. I talk with other people about God. I cook. I eat dinner. I go to bed. On Fridays, I take a class.

I could wear a dress. (If I found acceptable tights, sometime before Thursday. Tights have been my pre-date nemesis before and, no, I didn’t adequately solve the problem last time.) But, thing is, these days at least, I’m not much of a dress-wearing type. Don’t get me wrong. I love dresses, I love dressing up, but fact is I’m living at a retreat center and the fanciest I get is throwing on a necklace with my ripped jeans.

The other day, another woman here – a staff person, who lived here as a student thirty years ago – told a story about a date she went on while she was a student here. She said she got herself all worked up over what she was going to wear and rushed out to buy something new, only to realize that if the woman she was seeing didn’t like how she dressed normally the relationship probably didn’t have a lot of staying power. It’s an obvious point, but it’s stuck in my mind this time.

So, the argument for everything to wear? I have all my clothes here. Nine pairs of pants. A skirt. Several dresses. All sorts of shirts – mostly fitted t-shirts and sweaters – that I haven’t discussed at all. Maybe I should stop worrying so much and just pull something out of the closet. Like this (scroll down). That looks pretty good, right? I have both those items of clothing with me here, although they’ve seen some wear and tear since then (and those are, after all, the smelly jeans. But then he’s not going to be getting up close and personal with my pants. Not on the first date! Heavens, I’m not that kind of girl.)

Pep talks would be deeply appreciated. Wish me luck!

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12 responses to “Big News… of the first date sort

  1. Good luck on your date; may you have good conversation and no awkward pauses :) My opinion on your outfit? Don’t wear the stinky jeans. Even though you don’t plan on getting that physically close, some people have an acute sense of smell and can detect the subtlest of scents; you don’t want him to wonder “what is that smell?” all night, if he’s one of those people! lol Wear something that makes you feel confident and comforable.

  2. Hon’, don’t stress out too much. As my sister says, guys only see shapes and colors. The details are going to be lost on him anyway, so pick something you feel comfortable in, that’s not too shabby (or stinky!) and is in a flattering color for you. Done!

    And good luck on the date! :-)

  3. You’re going to do just fine! I agree, wear something that you feel comfortable in and don’t worry about anything. Just go and have fun.

  4. My now husband kept bugging me for three weeks to meet and I kept putting him off until he finally aggravated me so much that I said “Fine! I’ll meet you!” just to shut him up. We moved in together two months later and got married two years later to the day. Here’s hoping your date goes just as well!

    I’m no expert or hell, even competent at dating, so take my advice with a grain of salt. My husband and I first met at a local coffeehouse, and after some extreme obsessing about what to wear, I finally just dressed for the locale and not necessarily for the occasion. I wore a pair of nice jeans and a black t-shirt with a pretty scarf. I can’t even remember what he wore, but I think it was similar. Sans scarf, of course.

    I think both people are equally nervous about first dates and such, so chances are, he’s probably just as worried about the impression he will make on you and less likely to pay much attention to what it is you’re wearing. First dates are exciting (even as I don’t care to repeat them), so have fun on yours and good luck!

  5. Listen to that wise woman. Pick an outfit you feel comfortable and very *you* in. If he’s worth the trouble, he’ll be okay with what you choose, whether it’s a dress or pants or a skirt.

    You’re pretty and smart and thoughtful. What’s not to love about you?

    Now stop panicking (not that it’s unusual to panic slightly over these details when getting ready for a first date) and prepare to have a great time.

    Then share the story with us when you come back so we can live vicariously through your date. ; )

  6. I met my girlfriend of 2.5 years on okcupid. In checking back in with the site, I found it surprisingly fat friendly. Moreso that the fat-specific dating sites which can have the all-too-common habit of serving the fat community by NOT being fat friendly since most fat people aren’t.

    I think the idea of wearing something “normal” for you makes a lot of sense. I tend to feel the same way about cleaning up before a girlfriend comes to my place for the first time. I don’t want to look like a slob, but at the same time I don’t want to create some kind of unrealistic and unsustainable image of myself that would ultimately be deceptive. There is a thin window between impressing and being honest, but I’m sure you’ll find the sweet spot. Have fun!

  7. Do a quick and dirty hem job on the nice jeans, put on a shirt you like and any favorite accessories and you’re done.

    I agree, nix on the stinky jeans, people can be very sensitive to scent.

    Good luck!

  8. Good news about the stinky jeans: I bought some of the “right fit” jeans within the last couple of months and they do NOT stink! Maybe Lane Bryant finally caught a clue. :-)

    Oh, and some unsolicited jeans-hemming advice, though maybe everyone else is so cool that they knew this before I learned it from “Queer Eye”: Take up the length by making a tuck inside the jeans, with the seam hitting just above the original hem stitching. Trim the bulk of the tuck away, finish the edges, and blind stitch what’s left to the inside of the jeans to hold it up. Then you don’t end up with the too-sharp, unfaded “mom jeans” look that comes from hemming them just like slacks. Like I did for years. :-)

  9. I love dresses, I hate tights, and I hate thigh chafe, so I often do jeans under dresses (works in a bohemian sort of way under the right dress) or, my favorite, leggings and boots under the dress. But I’m terribly prone to sudden bursts of climbing and jumping and stuff and need something opaque under a dress.
    And seriously, primping for someone is a little compliment and statement of interest, but a date better be down with your normal mode of dress, too. Have fun!

  10. CK jeans + hem tape (like this) from any sewing/crafts supply store + top that is comfortable but has some shape (make sure it’s good for sitting too, not just standing) + a fun accessory if you have one=cute, comfortable, current “you”, with an easy visual focus if he’s nervous about that sort of thing (accessory)

    and have fun!

  11. OK. I thought I was crazy because it seems al 3 pairs of right fit jeans I own smell funny. Obviously I am not nuts! WHY do they smell weird? The dyes? The fabric? Why can they not get around this problem? They have other jeans that don’t smell.

    Have fun on your date. I agree with dressing “normal” for yourself. The outfit you linked to is nice but you look nice in color like the first photo (teal colored top). :) How bout that, some jeans, and some accessories!

  12. Pingback: pre-date jitters, part II: The Man « Fat Girl on a Date

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