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Dinner with Cupid

Blind date: ‘I remembered two years ago this really charming driver who was a stand up’

Will she get a second chance at romance with her onetime Lyft driver?

Emily Kanzer and Jack Burke.

EMILY KANZER: 26 / cinema staffer / aspiring filmmaker

What makes her a catch: She works at a yoga studio and a theater, so if you date her, you get free yoga and movies

Her hobbies: Making a documentary film about resettled remote outposts in Newfoundland

JACK BURKE: 27 / youth worker / comedian

First thing people notice in his home: His book collection on historical atrocities

What makes him a catch: His sense of humor



Emily I spent the day with my mom making Titanic jokes (because his name is Jack). I paradoxically had no stake in this date whatsoever, but also felt like I was going to throw up.


Jack I was early, she was late. My sisters informed me that’s the way it should be. The waitress brought her over and we shook hands.

Emily Really? We’re doing a handshake? He was cute in an approachable way. I was honestly relieved he wasn’t ugly.

Jack She was cute with artsy curly hair.


Emily We started off with the dreaded “What do you do?” I said I went to film school so he asked me what my favorite film was. He studied genocide, so I asked him what his favorite genocide was. When that went over well, I knew that things were going to work out.

Jack I don’t drink and Emily decided not to get one, either. Which was a sweet gesture.

Emily He looked familiar. When he was describing that he drives for Lyft on the side, I remembered two years ago this really charming driver who was a standup. Naturally, I asked him to tell me a joke. It was really bad, and therefore memorable. I wrote in the comments, “If I was single, I would totally have left you my number.” It was such a weird coincidence that it automatically made it feel like the date was going to work.


Jack It was really wild. Any nerves before were gone now.

Emily We went hard on charcuterie, but I pulled a rookie move and ordered only soft cheeses. It was fun to watch Jack struggle.

Jack If it smells like mold, I’m not that interested.

Emily Things got heavy when we talked about Jack’s job as a [youth] worker with at-risk men and my volunteer work as a hot-line counselor at a rape crisis center. We shared dark jokes not appropriate for the paper.

Jack We had odd convos about genocide and cheese, but the convo flowed. We laughed a fair amount, a good sign.


Emily Jack was in a comedy show that night, and invited me to come along. He seemed nervous on the way back, asking if going ruined our perfectly good dinner. Vulnerability is an attractive quality, so I found it charming. He kissed me goodnight.

Jack We hugged.


Emily He said he was interested, so unless he’s a liar, we will.

Jack I don’t know. Why? Because I am uncertain about what I want.


Emily / A

Jack / B+

Go on a blind date. We’ll pick up the tab. Fill out an application at Follow us on Twitter @dinnerwithcupid.