So, there was the date who showed up an hour late, and then there was the date who, more than 45 minutes in, after they finished their shrimp and grits, admitted he didn't know her name. But Daviece Clement remains upbeat.
You may recall Clement as the ad executive turned hairstylist who began the year with a campaign to find a marriage-worthy partner within 54 dates. She's six dates into her quest. And she now has help from a team of six interns.
Clement launched the campaign last month with a media blitz, including a signature cocktail and a billboard, which she's updating for Valentine's Day. (No date scheduled.)
Clement keeps a blog on the experience at 54dates.com. It reads as part diary, part fashion magazine, part self-help guide. She frequently asks her readers about their dating experiences.
"The feedback I'm hearing is, 'Take your time,'" she says. "It's really become an adventure. At first I thought, 'Maybe I'm going to meet the guy on date one, date two.' But this has really helped me relax."
Clement, who insists she's an introvert at heart, says her campaign relies on the support of her friends and an intern team — all students at Virginia Commonwealth University. She gathers the group once a week to develop content for the website and plan for a springtime push. The season of love.
"What I saw in my mind was this great campaign — I'm going to go on dates, inspiring women," she says. "All of that has happened, but I didn't realize how many people I would need to make that happen."
Two recent dates were with a teacher 12 years her senior, introduced to her by a friend. Clement says it's too early to tell if there's long-term potential, but she has high praise. "He's a great man," she says. "He's a beautiful person; he has a youthful energy. We sang songs for an hour in my car."