Saturday, May 29, 2010

Sleeping With the Fishes

Dating is hard. Dating as an intern riding on a year’s worth of insufficient sleep and little-to-no free time and it is a near impossible task.

Exhibit A: Over the last week, I’ve been emailing with this charming guy from Boston. He is smart, witty, loves music, and is passionate about the work he does. Perfect, right? He asks to set up a phone date. “Sure,” I write back, smiling to myself about how well this is going. We set up a phone date for Wednesday night at nine pm. Wednesday rolls around and by the end of the day I am exhausted. I had just transitioned from working nights to days again and my sleep schedule is just whacked. By the time 8:15pm rolls around, it is all I can do to keep my eyes open. I debate whether or not I should reschedule. Ultimately, I figure that my first impression will probably be less than stellar if I’m tired so we reschedule for the next day, same time. Thursday rolls around. I get home from work at the reasonable hour of 6pm. I sit on the couch to do some reading about Thyroid Disease in pregnancy. Fascinating, I know. Where do I find myself next? Face down in a puddle of drool on the sofa. I sit up with the start. It’s 10pm! Shit! I call him back and get voicemail. Damn. Damn. Damn. Thank goodness he’s been forgiving. We’re re-rescheduled for Sunday now. Third time better be the charm.

You mean, this bitch found her Prince Charming whilst she slept?
Lies, I tell you, lies!

Exhibit B: Date #2 with a lovely gentleman who works in the field of biotech. He lives in Cambridge and drives the 45 minutes to have dinner with me. Upon seeing me, he pulls out a small pink rose he cut from his yard. He is tall and handsome and goofy-awkward in the most adorable way. We sit down to dinner. He is clearly nervous. As he scans the menu, he fidgets in his seat and keeps looking around for the waiter. I try to lighten the mood and start talking. I crack a joke about the Italian restaurant we are at being straight out of the movie Goodfellas, gangster accents and all. “You want some wine? I’ll getchoo some wine. Tell me whatchoo want ‘n I’ll get it for ya!” I get a couple of chuckles out of him. A glass of wine later and we are both much more relaxed. Conversation flows easily. We laugh. We eat. We drink more wine. He becomes much more chatty.

Now, a bit of wine is great to take the edge off. However there is a fine tipping point between social and comatose in a person who has the baseline somnolence of a bear in the dead of winter. Unfortunately, halfway into my second glass of wine, I found myself the latter.

The more he spoke, the heavier my eyelids became. I began fidgeting in my seat, hoping the stretching would keep me awake. I had a couple of subtle hypnic jerks (the jumping phenomenon that happens as you fall asleep). There is such a thing as falling asleep with your eyes open (any overworked resident will tell you) and I felt my eyes going crossed every time I started to drift off. He HAD to have noticed. But if he did, he was damn good at hiding it. Did I mention that I accidentally dropped and stepped on the rose he gave me as I hugged him goodbye? I’ll be surprised if there is a date #3.

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