Magazine

Dinner With Cupid

Costume drama

Will two steampunk fans spark a hot romance?

From left, Mark Landsberg and Anita Ballesteros.

From left, Mark Landsberg and Anita Ballesteros.

MARK LANDSBERG

60 / ARCHITECT

WHEN HE IS HAPPIEST

When I am 60 feet underwater, perfectly equalized and observing and photographing tropical fish

HIS INTERESTS AND HOBBIES

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I am currently renovating an 1860 house.

ANITA BALLESTEROS

50 / SCIENCE LICENSING OFFICER

THE LAST THING SHE READ

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I am a bit of a science geek, so I do a lot of reading there.

HER INTERESTS AND HOBBIES

I still love punk rock. I love to write, to sing, to go dancing. I even like football (to a point).

7:30 P.M. THE COTTAGE, WELLESLEY

> LACE UP

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MARK I decided to forgo the use of power tools to continue renovations on my house. I did not want a visit to the emergency room to make me late for the date.

ANITA I spent most of the day digging through paperwork for my taxes; it was a mellow home day. I had a cup of tea before heading out.

MARK Anita was nicely dressed. She had straight iridescent red hair, silver hoop earrings, designer black glasses, and a big smile.

ANITA He was nicely dressed; his choice of blazer was a little daring, but that’s cool. He had a nice smile.

> GOGGLES ON

MARK My date earned an advanced degree in molecular oncology after starting college in New York at the age of 16. She lived abroad in England, France, and Portugal from the age of 8 until high school. She now lives in Holliston, is the mother of two kids, and works at UMass hospital.

ANITA Mark told me a lot about his professional endeavors — he is an architect and has done some pretty interesting projects and does a lot of projects in the steampunk style, which I thought was fascinating. We talked a lot about our kids.

MARK We discovered that we both had a love of steampunk art and architecture and had both attended the steampunk weekend in Waltham. Each of us shared photos of our steampunk costumes.

ANITA I think we are both passionate about what we do with our time, both very involved parents and proud of our kids. Other than that, when I think back on our conversation, I am not sure that we share many interests.

MARK I found her smile and her enthusiasm about her work quite infectious.

ANITA I liked that he was enthusiastic about his professional endeavors and was finding ways to bring his personal interests and passions in line with his professional work. Being passionate about your life is an attractive trait.

> TIP OF THE HAT

ANITA We were at the restaurant for three hours, and by the time we left, Wellesley had gone to sleep. That’s the thing about a date in the suburbs.

MARK After assisting Anita with her coat and scarf, I walked her to her car. She gave me a hug and we parted company.

> ANOTHER DATE?

MARK I did leave her with my business card.

ANITA He is a really interesting person and I’m not sure I felt a connection on this first date, but I’m thinking about it!  

— Compiled by Alex Stills

> POST MORTEM

MARK A-

ANITA A-

GO ON A BLIND DATE. WE’LL PICK UP THE TAB. Fill out an application at boston.com/cupid.

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