I'm a strong believer that you learn a lot on the first date, and that first impressions are crucial. I was recently hooked up with a nice girl named Karla by my friend Tarik who knew her from school, and knew that she was single. Being the good friend that he is, he wanted to set us up. I told him I thought it would be a little awkward to go out on a date with her when I hardly knew her. I figured we'd have nothing to talk about and it would be a high pressure situation leading to an embarrassing bust. We decided that a double date was the solution to our problem. He'd take out his girlfriend Ariel (who I've known for several years and am totally comfortable around) along with Karla and I, we'd get dinner together in the city, and then head out for some drinks if everyone was feeling up to it.
I was skeptical of the whole blind date idea, but figured there was nothing to lose (but my pride) by giving it a shot. I'm really glad I did. We all had a great time at the Crows Nest, a nice restaurant. By the end of dinner there was no question that we'd all be heading out for some late night drinks at a few pubs, and we did just that. We had a blast, and basically just partied together until about one in the morning.
Karla and I hit it off, and having both Tarik and Ariel there made it seem less like a date and more like a group outing, so there was really no pressure. At the end of the night I told Karla I'd love to take her out on a second "date" with just the two of us, if she was up for it. She replied "I thought you'd never ask." Man was I happy. I got her number, from her, not Tarik, and next time we'll be ready to go out on our own and I'm sure we'll have a good time. It won't be awkward and it won't feel like a typical set up, because we've already hung out together and know that we can have fun with each other. I'm definitely looking forward to taking her out again—in fact, even though it's only Tuesday (we're going out on Saturday), I've got the whole evening completely planned out.