Dar Caldwell, 28
Shaker LaunchHouse co-founder
How he caught our eye: This Valentine's Day baby has a sweet side, but it got a little lost amid his entrepreneurial activities. He's finding a new life-work balance in 2011, and that includes time for a girlfriend.
The perfect date: Something fun and adventurous, not your typical dinner and a movie. Hopefully a little flair of spontaneity in there. Maybe we're outside doing something active, grab a bite to eat and a drink, check out a new part of Cleveland, new show or act or something like that.
Something most people don't know about me: The crazy extremes, suffering and excitement that I have experienced with some of Cleveland's best young entrepreneurs.
My passion: My work — to the extreme. ... What I'm most passionate about is young entrepreneurs and how they can change and impact the city and the future of it. All day every day is spent with the best up-and-coming new talent here in town that are starting new companies. I have the absolute dream job.
Biggest turn-on: Ambition, or drive. Someone with big goals, go-getter, definitely not someone that just sits around or just goes with the flow.
Biggest turnoff: Pretentious, or maybe rude. Someone that's obviously caught up in themselves, and that's what they're thinking of more than other people around them or just having fun.
I own too many: I'm very nonmaterialistic. I try to have as few possessions as possible. ... I might have too many awesome friends, crazy stories. That, I think, would be the only thing I have too much of. I have too many cups of coffee every day.
My favorite ...
... place in Cleveland: When I'm happiest and what I love the most is when I'm at the incubator and surrounded by all these unbelievable entrepreneurs. It's just electric. When everyone's jamming and starting new companies. Otherwise, if I'm not at work, I love being in the metroparks or on the lake. University Circle is wonderful with all the museums.
... book: I'm a glutton for knowledge. Right now I'm reading Upstarts, Atlas Shrugged and the 2010 Economic Report on Africa.
... musician/band: A local guy, Tommy Johnson. It's kind of R&B almost. And whoever we pick to headline the 2011 Ohio Homecoming Concert
... sports team: I have to say I'm still a sucker for the Browns. I love the experience of tailgating. I think they're a good representation of the city.
... TV show: I don't watch any TV. The last thing I could ever really think of is sitting down in front of the TV. I'll throw on Hulu from time to time, and maybe I'm watching Community or 30 Rock, zone out for a quick second. I'd much rather spend my time outdoors or doing something active.
... vacation destination: I love going to Europe, to Ireland especially. I've got a lot of family out there. California is great as well and lots of family there, so we're always shown a good time.
... dessert: Something with Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, a Hurricane or Blizzards
... blog: techcrunch.com, which deals with startup companies. I read Paul Graham (paulgraham.com), who is an unbelievable entrepreneur and talks about business startup stuff.
My usual hangout: If we're not having beers here at the incubator, I like making it out to Ohio City: ABC or the Garage Bar. I love the West Side Market, I think that's probably one of my favorite places in town, walking through the market, checking out all the food.
In high school I was ... not a class clown, but a studious, party animal athlete.
And now I'm ... surrounded by amazing people and working on really exciting projects in Cleveland and around the world.
My best feature: My dimples as far as a physical thing. But I think the best thing about me would be my caring nature.
My bad habit: Working way too much
My first kiss: It was back in middle school; it was a game of truth or dare, some girl I had a big crush on at the time, so that was good.
My guilty pleasure: Wrapping up a hard day of work with a beer with some cool friends. Is that so wrong?
How my ex would describe me: Good intentions, funny, but completely lacking a work-relationship balance
Going out or staying in: Going out
Early, late or right on time: Usually just a little bit late because I tend to get caught up in the previous meeting. I start talking and talking.
Dogs or cats: Dogs
Dancing ... yes or no?: Yes, but very crappily
Twitter ... yes or no?: Yeah, just a little bit
Beer, wine or martinis: Beer. You've got to go Christmas Ale.
Roses or chocolates: It wouldn't be roses. It would be some wacky other plant, a stargazer lily.
My longest relationship: About seven years. Basically, I put my heart in a box the past two years as we started up this company. That's not very fun! I'm glad to have that portion of my life over and start thinking about myself again.
My No. 1 dating rule: Honesty is the best policy. Don't be wasting people's time, you know?
My deal-breaker: Lack of ambition, smoking. That sucks.
I hate when a date ... is afraid to try new things whether it's food or doing something and going somewhere.
But I love when a date ... does something spontaneous.
Worst pickup line: So many people are afraid to just go up and talk to someone that looks fun or interesting. So anyone that uses a horrible pickup line is awesome in my book. The cheesier the better, of course.
If I could date anyone: It would probably be some girl that volunteers at hospitals in Haiti or runs ultra-marathons, or maybe an awesome teacher who is innovating our boring educational system.
On a first date I never ... show up late.
Best place to meet someone: through doing something that you like whether that's community service, or you're out running in the park, shared interests.
Most unusual place I've met someone: On a plane to Europe, actually. Had a great time while we were overseas there, and we still stay in touch, but it never turned into anything official.
My take on Cleveland's single scene: Mentally, I'm so out of it, but my impression is it's definitely not as active as it is in other cities that I'm in, whether it's Chicago or New York. It seems like there's less people and a little bit less going on, so sometimes you have to make your own fun.