Dinner with Cupid

Blind date: ‘She had a cool aesthetic and a nose ring just like me’

Will their compatibility run deeper than tattoos?

Caroline Conley and Ben Gadwah.
Caroline Conley and Ben Gadwah.

CAROLINE CONLEY: 24 / salon receptionist

Her interests: Photography, mid-’90s sitcoms, and applying queer theory to pop culture

Her perfect mate: Tattoos a plus, and does anything in a creative field they are passionate about

BEN GADWAH: 26 / UX designer

On a desert island, he’d bring: Memes, vape, and a candle

What makes him a catch: Green eyes, a nice edgy style, and quick wit



Caroline I barely slept the night before because, y’know, anxiety. I tried to be productive [and] get everything done on my to-do list.

Ben I drank some chamomile and walked outside to get fresh air.


Caroline I was actually early, which might’ve been the first time in my life.

Ben She was already there having a glass of wine at the bar.

Caroline Cute, taller than me but not so tall that it’s going to hurt my neck. Tattoos, well dressed, had a really cute nose ring, which so do I, that was funny.

Ben She had a cool aesthetic and a nose ring just like me. I was hoping it was a signifier we’d have things in common.


Caroline We acknowledged the awkwardness of the situation.

Ben We talked about video games, movies, and music. I discovered that she’s connected with the local music scene.

Caroline He had a good knowledge of local bands. We talked about politics, important novels, and social justice work.

Ben I tried not to get too political, since it was the first date, but she was definitely on the same page.

Caroline We went to school for art, and while neither of us works in the field, we could talk about the ideas that got us into art. We also ended up counting how many tattoos each of us had.

Ben We ordered hummus and split salmon and Brussels sprouts.


Caroline He doesn’t like pita chips so I was secretly psyched, because I got to have all those by myself. It was so dark in this restaurant I felt as though I was trapped in a 2007 time loop of the Hollister clothing store.

Ben What stood out was how small the portions were. I don’t understand fancy restaurants.

Caroline [I’ve been] a vegetarian for 10 years and he ordered Brussels sprouts because it was a vegetable. It tastes familiar but odd. I asked, “Wait — is there meat in this?” and he answers, “Yeah, there’s bacon mixed in.” So I’m trying to figure out if I will get sick from what I’ve eaten, and how do I get this out of my mouth in a classy way? I spit it out in the bathroom downstairs. He was really sweet and understanding about the whole thing. We had fun together, despite being out of our element in a nice restaurant.

Ben The conversation never hit a lull. The connection was great.


Caroline Big for me is someone understanding when I need a smoke break, even though it’s a gross habit. Outside smoking, we were able to make jokes and laugh.

Ben I bummed a cigarette off of her. I think we knew we would both want to see each other again, so there wasn’t pressure to stay out super late. I walked her to the T and we exchanged numbers.


Caroline We’re going to Tasty Burger. I think we’d have more fun going to a cheap food place and seeing a band.


Ben I’m willing to spend more time with her soon.


Ben / A

Caroline / B+

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