The Bro in Denial :: Prettyman’s General

Sometimes jumping in the deep end is not the best way to enter the water. After a multi-month hiatus from Tinder, I let myself wade back into the dating pool in the easiest way possible: a bro in denial. These type of men have the best of both worlds – the good looks, effortless style, and charisma of a bro… but also the intelligence and compassion of someone who likes Harry Potter.

From the beginning, the signs of his duality were present. Simply put, his photos were stunning. A strong, masculine jawline and sparkling eyes? Yes, please. Exchanging intelligent conversation for FIVE DAYS before asking for my number? A hesitant but enthusiastic YES, PLEASE! For your ease, here is a great chart I generated with what little HTML knowledge I still retain from coding MySpace layouts…

Bro Qualities Harry Potter Qualities
Wore a V-neck, khakis, and rolex on date Wore it because I mentioned it was my favorite male outfit
Arrived in a Uber Willingly suggested SE Portland instead of Downtown
Ordered “whiskey, neat” when I said “Surprise me!” Revealed that he showed up to the date sober
Has 40,000 points on SnapChat Hasn’t logged into Tinder since our date?!

Now that I have lived in Portland for almost 2 years, it is a struggle to find a new bar. Wait, no, let me rephrase. It is a struggle to find a new bar that I wouldn’t be ashamed to bring a date to. There are so many dive bars filled with crusty old men and a lack of any atmosphere. I want unique, trendy cocktail bars! After many hours of deliberation, I decided on Prettyman’s General. It is an old-era general shop that poses as a pretentious bar. I’ve driven by it several times and it looks so clean, but I never saw anyone inside. What’s more awkward than being on a Tinder date? Being on a Tinder date while also being the only people in a bar.

I took a leap of faith and prayed we wouldn’t be alone there on a Tuesday night. He arrived first (while I was chugging wine outside of my Car2Go) and taunted me via text about my tardiness (I WAS STILL EARLY!) We immediately hit it off – absolutely no awkward silences. He was much cuter in person, if possible, and we stayed there talking through two rounds from 7:30 to 11pm.

The Bar Pros
The small space is decorated like a Portland Paradise: cacti!
Ample seating and cozy alcoves to have a bit of privacy
The coffee tables are actual logs!
Perfect noise level to have a conversation but not feel like you’re in a library
Menus on clipboards!

The Bar Cons
They can’t make cocktails? They only serve the 3 on the menu…
Everyone was well over 30.
One woman sat next to us and read the menu alone for 45 mins.
They noticeably dimmed the lights every 30 minutes *distracting*
In a pretty isolated location, not many other bars nearby
The name is way too pretentious. Who is the Pretty Man?

After we were sufficiently drunk (I shared my purse wine), we decided to walk down the street to Likewise and grab a couple more. Along our route was a Safeway and I expressed my deep love for drunk grocery shopping. We took a stroll through the store and continued on our journey.

We arrived at Likewise and it was CLOSED! Instead, we grabbed an unremarkable drink at Sweet Hereafter until they kicked us out at 2:30am. He offered to walk me to my apartment (Bro intentions?) but was really excited when I suggested we look at the geocache along the way (total HP). I was pretty intoxicated at this point and don’t quite remember the dialogue that was exchanged immediately before, but we kissed. On the street. And during the walk into my neighborhood. And on my porch. I told him goodbye as I unlocked my door and he said “Wait, I forgot to tell you something…” I asked, “what?” and he kissed me again. Pretty romantic stuff.

He texted me from his Uber home and again the next day. I was looking like a hungover WRECK all day at work, so when he asked me to meet up after I got off, I declined. I needed a nap. He didn’t try to reschedule. The next day at noon, he tried to ask me to dinner but I already had work-out commitments. Doesn’t this Bro plan ahead?! Our current status: a massive scheduling conflict.

On top of my irritation with his lack of foresight, I discovered that his new job includes a mandatory 5 month training period in Wisconsin and a possible subsequent permanent relocation. He failed to mention these details, but confirmed they were true when I asked.

The form of this blog has transpired much like my feelings toward my Bro in Denial – initial infatuation followed by unrestrained annoyance. I keep trying to tell myself to keep an open mind and enjoy the chaos of youth! But until then….

Update: We ended up hanging out again! Not an official date, but he came to my Rosh Hashanah party. It felt weird to invite him to meet my friends after only one date, but it ended up being a great time. The crew went to Chopsticks for some karaoke and he offered to walk me back to my apartment. We couldn’t go more than 5 steps without him stopping to pull me in for a kiss. Sounds cute, right? No. I was tired. I wanted to go home and this walk was going to take 3 hours at this rate. Finally we made it to my doorstep after I had to scold him for being so frisky. I obviously didn’t invite him up and I never saw him again. Sometimes you’ve gotta play it cool to make it hot.

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