The Dating Project: A Beginning and Some Ground Rules

Dudes. Dating is weird.

It’s like interviewing people for a super personal job. 

Sort of.

Writing about it in a place where anyone could look at it is also weird. But, alas, writing is how I think, and I’ve decided that I want to document my experiences.

Now, first things first, I fully intend to protect the identities of the innocent (and even the not so innocent). See, the thing is, if your name is like my name, even cursory Googling will get you to one of my blogs.  Good thing, though, is if a guy would object to dating the kind of person who would turn the whole thing into a project, and is also the sort of guy to do his homework, he knows that I’m not for him. And with that knowledge, we both win!

My other starting ground rule is that I’m going to allow some time to pass between what has happened and when I post about it. The last thing I want is to feel like someone has enough accurate data points to figure out just where I’ve been and with whom. I don’t think anyone really cares, but it feels gross to just have that info just hanging out there.

I’m going to go ahead and admit to something that is probably a problem. My main vice is curiosity. I stay in all sorts of places too long because I’m curious about them. I talk to people too long due to curiosity. Curiosity is the birthplace of all of my worst ideas…but, also, my good ones. 

Dating is almost like consensual eavesdropping. In that way, it is very alluring to the curious.

You get invited into a sliver of someone’s life, and you can take it all in and turn it into short stories…if that’s your thing.

If you know anything at all about me, you know that working on projects and setting goals are central to the way that I see myself. Here, the project is to document these dates, and more importantly, what I learn from them. The goals are manifold. I tend to be someone who sort of falls into relationships, a serial monogamist, if you will. Here, I’m aiming to push against that habit a bit. I’m also trying to take the time to really think about what’s important to me and why, what I like and why, and what I’m looking for and why.

I might as well get a project out of it, no?

Whole 30: Day 25

Today's #salad. #saladaday #365salads #365daysofsalad

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I thought that I would be writing about the Whole 30 experience more frequently. (Then again, I often think that I will write about something that I don’t wind up writing about). But, I have to say that this time has flown by.

It is is an interesting thing to adhere to a plan that is unfamiliar to the people who surround you. When I said Whole30 to one person and described it a little bit, that person said, “Oh! Like the Atkins Diet.” I never know what to say to something like that because I am not familiar with all of the details of the various diets that have been popular over time, plus, it feels rude to respond to a statement where the speaker’s intent is to relate to you with a bold and flat, “I have no idea.”

This will surprise no one who knows me. I read as much as I could about people’s experiences following the Whole30 diet before I began this experiment, and through the beginning of it. It turned out that the Whole30 website had a what-to-expect area on the website.

I didn’t experience a number of these things. However, I did have a very weird dream about eating pizza. I described it to someone like this, “Have you ever had a dream where you had an affair even though you know that you would never do that? But you wake up FEELING like you had an affair and you’re all like ‘What have I done? How could I have done that?'” That dream was a little stressful.

Today's #salad. #365daysofsalad #365salads #saladlove #salad #saladbar

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I also noticed a strange change to my sleep and my energy. I normally sleep like the dead, and sleep for around 7.5 hours per night. Some of these days, I haven’t been able to get to sleep right away because I’ve just felt too awake. Also, there have been times where I feel like a fully-wound wind-up toy. I’ve felt on several days like I needed to just go and expend a lot of physical energy. There have been days where I feel tired in my mind, but my body felt very charged. This type of energy, if that’s even what it should be called, did not feel good at all.

The energy thing made me feel like a dog that’s been in its kennel for too long, like I needed to just get out on a field and chase some frisbees or something. If I hadn’t been so active over the last several weeks, I wouldn’t have minded. But over the course of my Whole30, I’ve stayed on the move. For example, there are only 5 days of the last 25 where I took under 14,000 steps. Some of the exercise that I’ve done has been relatively intense, like the studio cycling class I’ve been taking, yet still, afterwards I might feel like I need to blow off more steam. 

There are several foods that I’ve leaned on pretty hard over the last couple weeks. I’ve eaten a questionable amount of apples, almond butter, salmon, and beef. I’ve also acquired a taste for kombucha.

I had tried kombucha in the past and thought it was disgusting. I didn’t understand the appeal of it at all. During this time, though, I gave it another shot and found it enjoyable. Maybe this is because I wasn’t drinking anything else other than tap water, coffee, and the occasional La Croix. Maybe this is because I tried enough of them that I started to enjoy it. I like kombucha enough now that I am attempting to brew a batch right now. And yes, the scoby is every bit as alarming as I thought it would be.

While I am looking forward to completing the Whole30, I am nervous about the reintroduction period. The idea is that at the end of the Whole30 your deliberately reintroduce that food groups that you eliminated during the 30 days. I know that my stomach and company have been happier over the last few weeks. This makes me a little gun shy about reintroducing things. I’m excited to put beans back into my diet. I hadn’t realized just how often I eat them. I don’t really miss grains. I’ve never been a big rice eater, and I haven’t specifically wanted pasta. Bread, of course, is delicious. Your girl loves tortillas. I’m nervous about cheese in particular. I love cheese. Sometimes when I am stressed out, I like to visualize myself sitting in a hot tub of queso dip. I am serious. I’ve suspected, however, that my mouth is the only part of my body that likes cheese. I’m worried about other dairy as well. I don’t like milk, so that’s not a biggie. However, I do enjoy the occasional ice cream cone. Eating one of those strikes fear in my heart. I’ve gotten used to black coffee, so I’m not even worried about cream in my coffee because I don’t think that I’ll really go back to drinking it that way.

Night #salad. #saladaday #365salads #365daysofsalad

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Finally, I notice that I haven’t been as hungry on Whole30 as usual. This is a tricky assertion because sometimes I’m simply not good at listening to my body’s signals. There are times when I might have thought I wasn’t hungry, but really, when I reflect, that was happening during times I was just ignoring my body’s signals. During this Whole30 so far, this body has not been shy about letting me know when it’s time to eat. In fact, upon waiting too long, I’ve done some disgusting things like eat a mouthful of Whole30 compliant saurkraut right out of the jar or eat beef of questionable doneness, slicing off a piece from the piece I was eating as soon as I could tell myself it was done enough to eat

So far, so good.

Now it’s time to wrap this whole thing up.