Once upon a time, I met a boy who was nice. He was a great texter, he replied in a timely manner and had more than a few puns up his sleeve. That doesn’t seem like an important quality but the ability to hold a solid texting conversation goes a long way especially for someone with a busy schedule. He quoted "The Office" a few times and offered to watch the entirety of "Star Wars" with me. My expectations were high so when we finally decided to meet for coffee I was pretty excited if not for the fact that the place we chose had a Butterbeer Latte.
Now there were many seemingly red flags on this date. He showed up late, he wanted to sit outside in the sweltering heat, he didn’t offer to pay, and the majority of our conversation was taken up by him recounting how he has a “different personality” when he parties. But I’m a profound believer in giving people multiple chances so after we got coffee I asked him to go to Hobby Lobby with me because I had to pick up a few things.
Anyone who has ever been to Hobby Lobby knows that the Christmas section is magic. Year round you get the warm fuzzy feeling that Christmas brings - trees, ornaments, lights, and pure joy surround the store. Only a sociopath could walk through those aisles and not feel just a bit of happiness. But alas my date, who for the duration of this narrative I will call The Grinch, did not find any of it amusing. In fact, he refused to even walk through the section despite how much I talked it up before arriving. Now the previous red flags could be ignored but for some reason, this particular act was inexcusable in my mind. I likened it to committing treason.
Granted this might not have been the best story to choose to make my point. He wasn’t a perfect gentleman prior to the Hobby Lobby Incident of 2017. Maybe I was pushed over the edge beforehand when he saw a mug at the entrance that said “daddy” and laughed for five minutes, or perhaps I’m just that passionate about the Hobby Lobby Christmas section. But the point that I’m so desperately trying to reach is that Christmas isn’t my favorite holiday. It wasn’t so much the fact that he didn’t care about Hobby Lobby that didn’t make him a viable candidate, it was that he didn’t enjoy the little things. He didn’t walk into that store and feel that childlike sense of wonderment.
Deal breakers are different for everybody. They come in the form of having a sense of humor, good music taste, being nice to waiters, etc. These seem simple and obvious but the older you get the more you realize how easy it is to find someone who meets your most basic of standards. There are plenty of nice people in the world and they will show interest.
The hard part comes in finding someone who you can spend your time with and not be bored. Whether it’s casual or serious, you slowly begin to realize the tiny little deal breakers that make all the difference such as finding someone who gets your Spongebob references, is down to get a milkshake at 1 a.m., or who gets excited walking down the aisle of a store you think is fun. The Grinch wasn’t a bad guy. I’m sure he didn’t think very highly of me either with my endless ranting about the power of Christmas. But I have no doubt that he’ll meet someone who makes his heart grow three sizes, and hopefully his holiday spirit.