Alex and Mark met on Friday at 4:30 p.m. and went to The Virginian on the Corner. Alex: I signed up for Love Connection because my friend is the editor of [the Life section] and she’s always teased me to do it. I’ve been reading the articles for a long time so I decided to try it. Mark: I’m friends with someone on Cav Daily and thought it would be fun. There wasn’t a great deal of thought that went into it, but I thought hey, why not try it? Alex: I have never been on a blind date, and I guess I don’t really know what I was expecting. I was excited to meet a new person at U.Va. Mark: It was the first blind date I had been on. I realistically figured it might be a one time thing and slightly awkward. I had tempered expectations and thought it would be a fun way to meet someone new. Alex: I saw someone from far away who was sitting on the steps of the Rotunda, and I thought it was him. We were both on time, and it was obvious that we were both waiting for someone. He seemed really nice and outgoing and was pretty relaxed about the whole thing. Mark: I missed the part of the text that said to meet at the steps with the Z symbol, so I was waiting up on the actual Rotunda steps for five minutes before I realized where I was supposed to be. We greeted each other and decided to go to The Virginian. She seemed nice and started asking me questions right from the start — there were no awkward gaps. Alex: I’d say the conversation was pretty balanced. We had the classic small talk conversation and talked a fair amount about our family life and what we’re involved in on Grounds. We also played a fun game of “Would you rather?” Mark: It was pretty balanced — I think we both got to talk equally. There were like one or two gaps but overall I think it was a mix of both of us talking. Alex: He made me laugh a lot, which I thought was great because I always like to have a good time. I thought the conversation was pretty light, which stood out to me. Mark: In terms of personality, we’re pretty similar, but we didn’t have much overlap in friend groups. It was cool because I was meeting someone I never would have met otherwise. Alex: I felt that it was more of a friend vibe. It’s really hard because we didn’t know each other before. He seemed like a really great guy, and I hope to see him around Grounds. Mark: I think there was a little bit of both friendly conversation and flirting. I’m pretty bad at reading it, but I felt for the most part it was more of a friend vibe. Alex: He offered to pay, which I really appreciated because it was a really sweet gesture. We walked back home in the direction of where I lived and then split off. Mark: I paid — common courtesy. We ended up staying at the Virginian a good bit after we finished eating. We walked back, I hugged her goodbye, and that was it. Alex: I would give it a 7. Mark: I’d give it a 7. It was solid, a lot of fun, and I enjoyed meeting her.