Have you ever tried talking to another human being? Really talking to them, not just sort of nodding to them at a bus stop or thanking them for handing over your change? Take it from me, it’s hard. Other human beings are weird and terrible and difficult things and they’re just as complex as you are (if not more). Lots of people get nervous before a date. I get nervous whenever I make a new friend.
What do you say to them? What if you say it wrong? What if I let my guard down and they run roughshod over it, uncaring? What if I’m too friendly, or not friendly enough? It’s dizzying. I’m the worst extrovert imaginable.
Of course, this is why we have cafés and pubs and restaurants and bars and cinemas and go-karting tracks and arcades and parks and all these shared spaces that build up the no-man’s-land between our houses. Because the concept of asking another human being to just talk to you for four hours is ridiculous and terrifying and weird, but doing it in a pub is fine. You need a pacing mechanic for the evening, carried out in pints and torn-open packets of salt and vinegar chips and cigarette breaks.