23 Things To Do Instead Of Getting Engaged Before You’re 23

23 Things To Do Instead Of Getting Engaged Before You’re 23.


I think I can get behind this…


The Accidental Date

Even though I have a boyfriend now, I’m still not quite used to it. I’ve never been the type of girl that boys line up to date, but I’ve always had a good number of guy friends. So if a guy is nice to me, I may get an instant crush, but I assume that he’s just being my friend. And, as far as I know, that’s the case 99% of the time.

During the training for my new tourguiding job, I met my fellow tourguides, one of whom is a guy named Sam. He was very friendly and talkative to everyone the first day we all met, but by the second time we went on a group training tour, he was paying much more attention to me- walking with me, chatting almost exclusively with me, and being more physical than most people are in general. I didn’t chalk it up to anything, really. Again, it had been over four years since I was even asked out. He found out I was an actor and told me that he worked in the offices at the biggest theatre in the city.

Over the past few weeks, we’ve met up to work on the tour and rehearsed over the phone a million times. We never did anything outside of the tour; as soon as we were done doing the tour in person, we parted ways, and it was only very recently that Sam followed up socially after we rehearsed over the phone. I did notice that this was more interest than a guy usually showed me, but at that point, I was single and probably desperate, so I figured I was just being hypersensitive. It was during these conversations that Sam told me that he could get me comps to the current show at the theatre. I said that I’d love to see it. We at first decided to see it in April, but since I’m assistant stage managing a show that has the same run time, when he invited me to see it on Friday, I said yes.

Perhaps it should have occurred to me that this was more than a friend thing, and it did, a little. I made sure that the dress I wore wasn’t too date-y, but that was hard because I ALWAYS dress up to go to the theatre, especially evening shows. I did also mention to my boyfriend what was going on, and he was suspicious of Sam’s motives, much more than I.

It didn’t take long for me to get just as suspicious, though. Sam and I met up an hour before the show, and when he saw me, instead of giving me his usual hug, I got a kiss on the cheek. Since we had time to kill, we went to a bar so he could see the basketball game. There, he paid for my drink (and by drink, I mean I got a soda and so did he.) While he is, as I mentioned, a very touchy-feely person, he was touching me more than usual- the hand, the waist, etc. When we went into the theatre to take our seats, he practically guided me into my seat by my waist, calling me “sweetie”, and though I pulled away, I felt like the damage was already done. During the first act, I was terrified  he was going to try and hold my hand, so I kept my program in the hand closest to him and kept my hands on the other side of my body, leaning away from him. He didn’t try, as it happened, but better safe than sorry.

But even though he didn’t try to hold my hand, he was still very… date-y towards me, and I decided during the first act that when intermission came, I would subtley let him know that I was taken. When the lights came up, I escaped to the bathroom, figuring the mile-long line would allow me enough time away from him. But I went too fast and there was no line and before I knew it, we were standing around in the hallway and he was way too close. So I’m standing there thinking, ‘How can I hint to him that this can’t be a date?’ Finally, we ended up talking about Philadelphia theatre and I saw my chance. “I saw Seminar last week with my boyfriend,” I said,  then mentioned how much said boyfriend enjoyed the show, as did I.

He got the hint. In fact, he reacted to it so abruptly, moving away from me to look at a display case, that I thought perhaps I had been rude about it. But he recovered within seconds and was friendly, but not so touchy, with me. He did still touch my hand as we sat down for the second act, but in general, it felt less like a date… though I still sat the same way I had during the first act, even though it got uncomfortable after awhile.

We ended up taking the same train home, though my stop was a good half hour before his. Thankfully, he kept his hands to himself and didn’t use any terms of endearment, and we arrived at my stop without incident. And while I’d like to think that he understands my relationship status, I’m not positive. So while I’d certainly like some more comps, I’ll have to make sure he knows what the deal is before I accept anymore.