Lizzy grew up in Indiana and lives in Encinitas. She owns and operates Tailored Hair for Men, a no-girls-allowed boys club of cosmetology in Mission Valley, with a second location opening in La Jolla in August.
Ryan was raised in Del Mar and lives in North PB. He operates two of his family’s restaurants in Old Town, Casa de Reyes and Barra Barra Saloon, and co-owns Pacific Beach-based Beach Bum Blazers, a men’s apparel company.
The two met for the first time about half-an-hour ago, and are now riding in an Epic Limo to an airfield in Jamul for an action-packed blind date. Before they arrive to get high, really high, let’s review the pre-date interviews.
PacificSD: Why are you going on a blind date in a magazine?
I have been working nonstop, building up Tailored since December, so I haven’t had much time to date. I see up to 10 men a day but can’t date any of them, because they’re my clients.
It’s a better option than Match.com.
What do you do for fun?LIZZY:
I love discovering new places to eat. Music is always top on the list as well.
I like skinny skiing and going to bull fights on acid.
Describe your special brand of sex appeal in five words or less.LIZZY:
Quirky, independent, confident, passionate, happy.
Sexy and I know it.
Rate yourself on a scale from one to 10 for looks.LIZZY:
If I’m at Walmart, probably a two. If I’m at work or with friends, I’d like to think I’m pushing a 10.
I’m an obvious 6.5.
How about for personality?LIZZY:
I feel like I am pretty consistently happy and fun to be around. Let’s say a 10.
Is 10 really as high as it goes?
What are you looking for in a date?LIZZY:
I’m attracted to a person who appreciates ideas and brainstorming but has the follow through behind them. I like someone that keeps me wondering just a bit - I don’t need to hear the whole life story in the first 24 hours. Physically, I like a man that looks like he could change my oil, but at night could clean up well in a sexy suit.
Someone who likes long walks on the beach. Seriously.
Fill in the blanks: I want my blind date to be “blank” and “blank.”LIZZY:
Adventurous and sexy.
Sexy and sincere.
What traits could your date exhibit that would be deal-breakers?LIZZY:
Taking himself too seriously, talking about himself the whole time, bad breath, closed-minded. Or if he’s a cop. I break the law too much; he may lose his job.
Eating with her mouth open or having an annoying ring-back tone.
What’s the most important thing in the world?LIZZY:
My Mom. Duh
During the pre-date screening, both Lizzy and Ryan said they would go skydiving, but neither knew that would be today’s actual activity until this moment. Whether it’s a pre-flight adrenaline rush or the drinks they may have had in the limo, they seem giddy as they arrive at Skydiving San Diego. Blake, the friendly ruler of the roost, greets them and lets them know they’ll need to watch a safety video and sign waivers before leaving the ground.
The couple appears to be getting along well, laughing and being somewhat touchy/feely while practicing the body positions they’ll assume when exiting the plane: face down, back arched, legs in the air (which we can only hope is foreshadowing for later this evening).
After watching two groups of jumpers emerge from planes as tiny specks and land larger-than-life eight minutes later, Lizzy and Ryan are ready to rock. Fitted with harnesses and paired with dive instructors, they march to the dirt airstrip and into to the open doors of Skydive San Diego’s bush plane. The dual-prop Twin Otter takes off fast and maintains an aggressive sprint to jump height.
At 13,000 feet, the plane levels off. Right before the doors open, the daters answer one (final?) question:
PacificSD: You’re about to jump out of a plane at 13,000 feet. What’s going through your head right now?LIZZY:
If I were to die, what portion of my company goes to whom?
I really hope I get to backflip out of this plane. This is mental, completely mental!
Ladies and gentlemen, please follow the illuminated pathway to the nearest emergency exit, where no inflatable slide awaits you.
The door opens.
The date comes back to Earth
Ryan’s out first. He backflips out of the plane with a full-grown man on his back and another guy with a camera tagging along to document the jump. A few seconds later, Lizzy, her tandem instructor and their photographer enter the sky.
After 60 seconds of free fall at speeds approaching 120 miles an hour, the daters’ chutes open for the seven-minute descent back to the airfield. Once safely on the ground, Lizzy and Ryan rush to each other for a big embrace. High with excitement, they gather their wits and belongings before jumping into the limo for the ride to Wonderland Ocean Pub, Ocean Beach’s new waterfront bar/restaurant with 180-degree ocean views.
When the couple arrives at Wonderland, they take a seat by the window. Once they’ve had a chance to talk over drinks and appetizers, they’re split for mid-date debriefings.
PacificSD: How’s it going so far?LIZZY
: It’s going awesome. We’ve had a ton of fun so far, all the way from skydiving to our shrimp ceviche.
I think it’s going swimmingly. She has extremely dreamy eyes, a sensational laugh and is just a vivacious, fun señorita.
What were your first impressions?LIZZY:
I walked out, and Ryan was holding this red rose. It was kinda sweet; he picked it up from his family’s restaurant. I was excited.
Holy smokes! She’s got fantastic hair and unreal eyes.
Is this the type of person you’d normally date?LIZZY:
Yeah, he’s motivated, he’s educated, open-minded. He seems like he’s definitely forward-focused, moving forward and growing.
Absolutely - dark hair, bright eyes and a nice smile.
What do you think about the way your date is dressed?LIZZY:
I wasn’t surprised with the way he was at first - I was expecting some plaid-shirt California guy. What really got me was his gold, paisley blazer at the end. That was pretty cool.
Like a rock star; I love it. You can’t compete. And how creative were her glasses she threw on with the little mustache underneath? She’s a ton of fun.
How was the limo ride to the restaurant?LIZZY:
I think both of us were on a high, because we’d just jumped out of a plane from 13,000 feet up, and we were talking about how we wanted to do it again. We were taking a few shots of tequila on the way, as well.
It felt like we were both on Cloud Nine, experiencing one of the greatest thrills in life. I think we both felt even closer and more connected, like we’d known each other for so long, after going through an experience like that. Plus, the Milagro shots loosened us up a little bit.
How was skydiving?LIZZY:
I know hair, and I’m figuring out business and marketing, but to go out of my comfort zone and to jump out of a plane was interesting. It brought me back down to everything, I guess you could say.
It was insane. There was about an hour-and-a-half build-up, and then, all of a sudden, you’re hopping on somebody’s lap and cannonballing out of the side of an airplane. It was a blast.
What’s the most attractive thing your date has done so far?LIZZY:
Like food. He was as excited about the food as I was, and I’m a huge foodie.
I’d have to say the massive smile she had when she came out of her apartment. The next best thing was hopping into a full-body jumpsuit.
What’s the least attractive thing?LIZZY:
Not put on the jumpsuit. I was real excited about the skydive jumpsuit, and I thought he was going to put one on, too. He was going to be my Superman jumpsuit hero and skydive partner. It didn’t happen. He decided not to.
She asked for a half-shot of tequila instead of a full one.
What would your parents say if you brought him/her home?LIZZY:
I’ve only brought home one guy, actually. I think my dad would say he’s a nice guy.
“What’s she doing with you?”
Rate your date on a scale from one to 10 for looks.LIZZY:
How about for personality?LIZZY:
Do you want to kiss your date now?LIZZY:
I would like to keep eating with him.
Does your date want to kiss you?LIZZY:
What are the odds this date will end more exciting than it began?LIZZY:
Skydive San Diego
13531 Otay Lakes Rd., Jamul
Cheers For Fears
A toast to safe landings
Despite having been open for only a week or so, Wonderland has already established a tradition: the Sunset Toast. After the couple returns from the middate interviews, and a few minutes before sunset, the general manager asks the couple if they’d like to have the honor of making tonight’s toast. They accept.
Then, as the bottom edge of the sun touches the ocean beyond OB Pier, the music is lowered, a bell rings, and Lizzy jumps up on a bench.
“Everybody, raise your glasses,” she yells. “Here’s to drinkin’ tequila, effin’ bitches and lovin’ life!”
As the crowd screams “Cheers!” the magazine crew finally leaves Lizzy and Ryan alone to enjoy the rest of their date away from the cameras. The next morning, we call to find out what we missed.
What did you think of Wonderland?LIZZY:
Wonderland was amazing. The food was insane. We had the mussels with green curry. It was awesome.
Wonderland was killer. They treated us like royalty and saved us the best table in the house. They have one of the best views of any waterfront restaurant in San Diego. Really fun staff, as well.
What did you have to eat and drink?LIZZY:
I had some kind of blueberry margarita, and he had a margarita as well, so we were kind of splitting them back and forth.
Their craft cocktails were amazing. We had a jalapeño-infused top-shelf margarita that was great, and three different kinds of ceviche, which were amazing. And mussels and really crispy chicken fingers with jalapeño jelly/jam dipping sauce. It was some good food.
How did the Sunset Toast go?
I think I might’ve been quoting The Hangover at one point, and my love for tequila. It was invigorating. I love moving crowds of people and I don’t know how I came up with what I came up with, but it worked, and everybody seemed happy.
I rattled off two or three little toasts she could do - talking about our date, what we were doing, we had just jumped out of a plane - and all of a sudden she goes on a rant about loving life, sipping tequila and effin’ bitches, right in front of the whole family crowd. Nobody saw that coming. I don’t even think she saw that coming.
What happened after the magazine crew left?LIZZY:
We finished up
, had our driver come, and we went home. I had to work in the morning.
The anticipation and all the excitement and the anxiety pumping through our veins for two hours leading up to the free fall took a lot out of us. At dinner, when we finally got to wind down and relax a little bit with a couple cocktails, we were exhausted after that. We actually asked our driver to drop us off.
Was there a kiss or romantic exchange?LIZZY:
I think we just hugged at the end. I think it’s more of a buddy relationship. I had a ton of fun, but I feel like it’s probably a ‘friend’ status.
As romantic as an exchange of telephone numbers goes. I would call that romantic.
What two things would you change about your date to make him/her a better fit for you?LIZZY:
Maybe be a little bit more of a rebel. Or maybe it’s there, and I just haven’t seen it yet.
Larger intake on tequila. I don’t even know another one. I think I’m speechless.
What was the funniest part of the date?LIZZY:
It was on the way down to skydiving. Ryan had to go to the bathroom, so we pulled over to Jack in the Box, and I got a hamburger.
When she went up in a huge jumpsuit and threw her hair in pigtails. She looked like Sporty Spice about to jump out of an airplane.
What was the best part of the date?LIZZY:
It would either be the drive down to skydive, because we were having a really awesome conversation and just enjoying the spontaneity of everything, or actually flying up to jump out of the plane. We were both at a cool spot, excited and happy.
Giving each other huge high-fives when we landed from our crazy free fall.
Will there be a second date?LIZZY:
I think that we’ll definitely see each other again, as friends. But as far as a date goes, I’m not sure. I think I’m just really busy with work right now. I’m not sure I’m ready to pursue anything yet, with anyone.
I would say there’d be a second date, I hope. We’re planning on seeing each other at Opening Day at the races with all of our friends.
What could have made the date better?LIZZY:
If he would’ve brought me one of his cool blazers. His brother designs these crazy-cool, curtain-looking blazers that I would’ve enjoyed wearing as well.
Probably, if we were both wearing Beach Bum Blazers when we jumped out of the plane.
AFTERMATCH: After jumping out of the plane, Lizzy said there was a 50/50 chance the date would end as exciting as it began. Ryan thought the odds of continuing action were more like 80 percent. But despite their hitting the landing zone after skydiving, the couple seems to have landed in the “friend” zone after dinner.
Romance, like skydiving, has its ups and downs. Even when dating excitement reaches the family-friendly height of “drinkin’ tequila, effin’ bitches and lovin’ life,” it’s still possible for a date to crash and burn. At least, in this case, it went down in a blazer of glory.
Wonderland Ocean Pub
5083 Santa Monica Ave., Ocean Beach