We're sitting in a Des Moines diner called Louie's and talking about our families. He seems tolerant of my ignorance, though, and we eventually make it out for coffee. I purposely steer us away from politics, and instead ask about his hobbies.
A sweet smile dominates his face as he recalls traveling to neighboring farms with his father when he was younger. Then he asks, "Do you want to know why I'm voting for Trump? Political Dabbler is into basketball, and if his March Madness knowledge is any indication, the passion is less dabble, more dunk. There are a few more coffee outings during that month of dating across the aisle. One guy finds me on Facebook and knows everything about me by the time we arrive at the cafe.
He argued, "It's people, not guns," and I countered, "It's guns that make it easier for people to kill." It was easily the 28th time we'd argued about gun control, with no foreseeable end in sight. We small-talked about football and basketball, our favorite bands, and our families, and then he asked for my number. The thought crossed my mind (and his, I later learned) more than I like to admit.
The whole date I kept thinking, Until, of course, I asked him about politics.
Despite our differences, we love and respect each other because I value my partner's opinion and he values mine, even, and especially, when we don't agree.