He is a nice guy.

I never date nice guys. I’m a work in progress.

Although I could easily find an irrational excuse not to like him (he doesn’t have facial hair; his house is too clean; he shows up early to everything)… I do.

Incidentally, his schedule is as crazy as mine. Late nights, always working on a project – only a guy with his own packed agenda can seem to truly understand my lifestyle.

He tells me his past relationships haven’t worked out because women said he was too busy. I promised that wouldn’t be an issue for me. Despite our loaded daily agendas, we’ve been able to see each other four times in the past month.

He shoots me an email on Monday asking if I’m free to join him and a few friends for casual dinner at his house that Friday. Within minutes, I regrettably decline – I’ve had plans for weeks to meet up with a girlfriend from university that evening.

“:) No worries”, he replies, and I get back to my work.

It’s Wednesday, and I’m meeting with a friend for one of those trendy Barre fitness classes. As I park carefully in the snow-covered lot, he texts me.

“So, what are you and your friend doing on Friday?”

“Not sure yet,” I reply, dashing from the car and into the warmth of the studio.

An hour later, I return to a batch of text messages.

Nice Guy: “I’m disappointed you’re not coming over on Friday since it’s clear your plans aren’t solid. I would cancel my plans for you if the roles were reversed – no questions asked.”

Me: “Umm…you said ‘no worries’ with a smiley on Monday when I said I couldn’t make it.”

Nice Guy: “I was expecting you to have some grand plans since you said you can’t come over, but you can’t be doing anything that important with your friend since it’s Wednesday and you don’t know what you’re doing.”

I’m confused, and I don’t like that it seems he’s trying to guilt me into changing my plans.

  • If he really wanted me to be there, why did he send an email (inviting me to a dinner that would be occurring whether I was there or not), rather than calling?
  • Why did he wait two days to text me that he’s “disappointed” that I have a conflicting calendar appointment?
  • Why doesn’t he just ask me if I can see him another time/day, or if my friend would like to come to dinner, too?
  • Why did he have to tell me my undefined plans with a good friend were less important than showing up to hang at his house?

This is a pivotal moment. I’m either going to say how I really feel – or I’m going to pretend like everything’s okay so I can continue seeing Mr. Nice Guy.

Me: “Methinks you are a tad passive-aggressive.”

– Elle La Belle DC




ulah bistro – u street

Location: Ulah Bistro Bar & Lounge

Parking: Street parking, or valet

Metro access: U Street/Cardozo

Tasted: Mediterranean Omelet, home fries, and (unlimited) mimosa brunch

Observed: Women catching up over mimosas, a group of guys hanging out for breakfast, and the usual trendy U street crowd.

Pondered: The Mediterranean omelet was tasty, but contained a lot of red onions (not mentioned on the menu description), which I really could have done without. The mimosas were delicious and we never had to beckon the server for a refill. Easy, quick service and flavorful food.

Recommended for: Those seeking a cozier brunch location, upscale classic breakfasts, and a reasonable price.

Overall rating (out of 5): elle-logoelle-logoelle-logoelle-logo


– Elle La Belle DC

altar boy

It is a crowded gathering at one of my favorite restaurant-turned-lounges. Too crowded, in fact. My friends decide we’d rather relocate to another, less-popular venue tonight, but not before I’m handed a business card from a man who smiles kindly.

I guess I am having a good day, because I don’t toss the card into the first wastebasket in sight.

The next day, I fiddle with the card and wonder how I want to play this. I don’t like to make the first move, but I don’t have much of a choice; after all, he doesn’t have my number. Should I text him? No, I hate text messages. I need to lead by example, and show him that I appreciate a phone call.

I ring him, wondering what I will say. I pray for his voicemail. Success! I leave a succinct but flirty message, suggesting he call me back at his convenience. There. Now the ball is in his court.

He calls me back about an hour later. We chat for an hour, too. The conversation is easy, and he seems to have a good sense of humor. We make plans to go out for dinner the next evening.

Today is the day. We’re having dinner. Where? I don’t know.

He suggests meeting in the Pentagon area, and we can stroll and figure out where to eat. We gaze at a sign that lists all of the restaurants within walking distance.

He stares in silence for a full minute.

Guy: “I don’t like any of these restaurants.”

Me: “…um… you picked this location.”

He settles for Asian cuisine, and we are seated in an empty restaurant. After all, this is a commercial district on a weeknight. We order and our food arrives in six minutes, tops. The entire waitstaff is standing circled around us, filling our glasses of water after nearly each sip.

He tells me that he’s ready to get married. His mom wants him to hurry up and have children. He loves his job and has received a few awards. He also has a couple of ongoing ailments that require prescription medication, I’m told. He has a big house in Maryland. He tells me that he’s ready to get married (yes, he said this multiple times).

I’m feeling a bit like Oprah; he’s being interviewed and I’m nodding inquisitively. He’s sharing his life story, yet asks nothing about little ol’ me. I wonder if he’s just on a mission to get married. To anyone.

After a solid 45 minutes, I chalk the date up to informal news media experience.

Tonight at 11, one woman is happily single eating leftover beef with mixed vegetables.

– Elle La Belle DC