Thursday, January 18, 2007

He's "The Olive Garden", she's "Bombay Palace"

Ok, people, I need your help here. What would you do in the following situation:

You've been on two dates with a really nice person. He/she is sweet, nice, athletic, good-looking, has a good job, owns a home, treats you well, calls when he/she says he/she will, and says he/she likes you. Basically, the typical "good on paper" person.

The problem is, you don't find him/her intellectually stimulating. Your conversations are superficial, and he/she doesn't seem to share your passion for different cultures. It's obvious he/she hasn't done much research in the subjects that you feel strongly about, and you feel like there's an intellectual void. Putting it in food terms (because I'm hungry), he/she is an all-american "The Olive Garden" while you are a globe-trotting "Bombay Palace".

You're going on a third date, but you're almost certain this person - albeit good on paper - isn't right for you. How do you let him/her down easy without saying something like: "You're not my intellectual equal?" Or do you just say it and hope for the best?


Blogger TexInTheCity said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

12:16 PM  
Blogger TexInTheCity said...

If you were to tell me that I am not your intellectual equal I would either burst into tears (because I am emotional like that) or verbally bitchslap you (because I'm eeeevil like that!)

How about, "As much as I enjoy spending time with you, I don't think we have that indescrible (ok, I think I spelled that wrong, maybe I really NOT your intellectual equal)'it' quality that would warrant a fourth date. Thanks for the crab cakes. Toodles!"

12:20 PM  
Blogger Leigh said...

Personally, I'm all for little white lies.

I know that trite line--"It's not you, it's me..." is so overused that it should be buried six feet under, but there must be something akin to it--a nice way of letting someone down without calling them the equivalent of narrow-minded idiot.

I try to remember that just because someone isn't my intellectual equal, that doesn't mean that they're any less of a nice person. (This is occasionally impossible and I am forced to out a manwhore with the IQ of a rock, embarrassing him in front of all his friends as lagniappe...What can I say? It's fun!)

Keep us posted on what you end up doing and good luck dumping the Olive Garden!

xo, L

1:27 PM  
Blogger Maya said...

A-hem. I've dated both kinds...and I *strongly* believe that the biggest/best bit of attraction is between the ears, not found on the Checklist (attractive, 'good on paper', whatever).

There were a couple of guys I went out with that were (really) models...guess what? I dumped them both (nicely and we're still friends) within a week or two. What started as 'ohmygod soo hot!' went to lukewarm really quickly when I figured out that they really were as dumb as I'd feared.

On the flip side...I'm married to the guy who got my artistic reference to the Creation of Man via: One outstretched finger reaching up to him on the escalator in the Venetian.

Smart is *way* sexy...and as someone (I think it might have been Katherine Zeta-Jones?) said, "Interesting conversation is what you're left with when the sex bit goes out the find someone to stimulate your mind." Or something.

In conclusion, I'd just go with something along the lines of, "You're a nice/sweet guy, but I don't see this going anywhere" - you know, direct but not TOO direct.

3:29 PM  
Blogger EmmaK said...

I don't think you should tell him he's not your intellectual equal, he might end up bawling like a baby. Just make up something like your ex boyfriend recently contacted you and you feel like you want to give it another shot. I've tried that one before and it works a charm.

3:36 PM  
Blogger TexInTheCity said...

"On the flip side...I'm married to the guy who got my artistic reference to the Creation of Man via: One outstretched finger reaching up to him on the escalator in the Venetian."

Aaaaawwwwwwwwww, I so TOTALLY dig that!

6:05 PM  
Blogger Baja Babe said...

Thanks, everyone! I'm sure the person I'm writing about, the one who's wrestling with this decision, will appreciate your input!! I feel bad for the guy getting dumped, but better now than six months down the road when he gets his heart broken!

tex-"Thanks for the crabcakes!" Priceless, girl!! :)

leigh-I totally agree, I'm sure this guy is nice and all. I'm all for little white lies, too. Thanks for the input!

maya-Yes, intellect is WAY WAY sexy! How awesome that your man *gets* you!

emma-That suggestion's not bad at all! Although he might become a stalker (happened to me once, the whole jealousy, we'll see who's the better man deal...).

6:16 PM  
Blogger twobuyfour said...

What's wrong with telling somebody that they're not your intellectual equal? I do it all the time. You'd be surprised just how many people I run across in a typical day who fit that description.

My former spouse was "good on paper". We had almost everything in common. Almost all the boxes were checked on the wish list. But she was the type to take on whatever my intellectual stance was on any given topic. That made any conversation deeper than "What's for dinner?" into an awful chore. Needless to say it didn't work out.

Personally I'd endorse the honest straight forward approach. "I like you, but I'm not interested in dating you. If you want to remain friends and go places and do things platonically I'd enjoy that, but that's all I'm prepared to offer you."

Or, "You're hot, but stupid. Wanna have sex? You'll have to get out afterwards."

3:06 AM  
Blogger Stacy The Peanut Queen said...

I'm with Leigh on this one...a little white lie isn't such a bad thing!

Of course, I haven't been on a date in about 100 years (or it FEELS that way anyway), so what the heck do I know??? ;)

4:52 AM  
Blogger Baja Babe said...

2x4-Thanks for making me laugh! :)

stacey-But I'm sure the PK stimulates your intellect just fine! ;)

10:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My sister has a masters degree, yet married a truck driver with barely a H.S. education and is as happy as can be. She says something like this: "the virtue in men lie in his heart not in his head". Upon thinking about this myself I have found that from my own experience a man can reason out, justify, rationalize, less moral behaviors. But a man who is true to his heart first will not falter, will be more truthful, and have greater inner strength as he does not carry all the baggage his head can create. I also find more often then not people are usually intellectually stimulated plenty in what they do for a living. Ask yourself how often do you come home from work, and just want to veg out and do something simple.

However, as with all things in life, moderation is wise. So there does have to be a point when you say when.

9:48 PM  

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