Friday, March 13, 2009

worst first date ever

So after being asked out a few times by an acquaintance, I agreed to accompany him tonight to dinner and a Nashville Predators professional hockey game. I really enjoy watching the Preds, and--although I didn't really think it would go anywhere--the guy seemed nice, so I thought I should give him a shot. We'll just call him He.

He showed up promptly at 5:30 and we set out to grab a bite to eat before the game. Upon reaching the stop sign at the exit of my apartment complex, He says, "I shouldn't turn left out of here." (It's a two-way, four-lane, busy road.) I reply: "Oh, hmm, I always turn left out of here. Maybe I just always get lucky, but the traffic usually comes in waves, so it should be clear in just a minute or two." Apparently, a minute or two was too long to wait, because after about 20 seconds he pulls out. We are nearly missed by two oncoming SUVs flying down the hill towards us and then we swerve dangerously into our destination lane, cutting off another SUV right behind us. A chorus of horns erupts from all directions. I'm definitely having second thoughts by now, but try to suppress my fears and put on a smile.

100 feet down the road we stop at a red light. The guy behind us throws his driver door open and storms up, in the middle of traffic, to our driver side window, where he proceeds to tap fiercely on the window and yell (in a slightly funky accent), "You're a moron! What, are you blind? You're crazy...you shouldn't be on the road" while waving his hands wildly. At first I don't connect the two events and giggle at him....then I realize just how dangerous that last move was, and am a little appalled as He makes a derogatory comment about the guy as the guy storms back to his car. He didn't apologize for nearly killing me.

Minutes later, we arrive at the "restaurant"....Qdoba, a slightly healthier version of Taco Bell. I'm thinking, okay, the guy's on a budget. I'm a broke college student; I can understand that. We go in. I order. He orders. It's a Subway-style deal where we go down the line and pick out the toppings. We get to the checkout. The very friendly cashier greets us, "Hey folks, how ar'ya doin' tonight. Are these going to be together or seperate?" I decided not to answer and let Him take the initiative. He looks over at me and I kind of half-smile with a little shrug. He says, "Oh...we'll be separate."

I'm in shock. Somehow, I find my credit card and hand it over to the cashier. The cashier likes the cute little sunflower picture on my card. So does He. I show it to Him, thinking, "Would you like me to use it to buy your dinner too?!" My salad was $6.43. That's less than the $10 it costs to park downtown. For someone who persisted in asking me for a date, I was bewildered as to why he didn't see fit to buy me dinner.

We gather our food and drinks and find a booth. For the next hour I politely ask him about how he came to be in Nashville, where he went to school, where he works, about his family, etc. I make an effort to show genuine interest because that's what tactfulness and appropriate date conduct is all about. Apparently, however, He missed the memo, because he didn't ask me one question about myself, my school, or my family the entire night....NOT EVEN ONE.

It's 6:47 pm. We've made it into the arena and found our seats. I'm initiating conversation--as usual--while we wait for the other fans in our row to show up and scoot past us. The first guy comes over, "Excuse me, I think my seat's just on the other side of you." I look up at the guy...."Hey! How are you!" (We'll call him Guy #2.) Guy #2 stares at me for 2 seconds before recognizing me. It's a guy I went on a first date with a few months ago. There was no second date.

By some freak alignment of the universe, I find myself sitting between these two. What are the chances that Guy #2 would be assigned to a seat right next to me?? None of our seats were bought; they are owned by separate companies who hold the season passes for those seats and give them sporadically to customers.

Guy #2 leans over and whispers in my ear, "This your new BF?" "No," I answer, "not at all." Guy #2 makes a point of calling me 'sweetheart' and asking me to hold his beer while he runs to the restroom. I'm trying to keep Him involved in the conversation and feel bad about Guy #2 moving in and trying to take over His date. He doesn't do anything at all to try to keep my attention. No clever jokes, no interesting stories, no informative comments on the game. Meanwhile, Guy #2 seems to be full of stories, jokes, and commentary galore. Guy #2 sustains a permanent lean towards me the entire game, supported by the flimsy arm rest that separates our seats. He, on the other hand, seems to be indifferent, positioned perfectly in the middle of his seat with his arms folded across his chest. I sit awkwardly between them, trying to keep from brushing either of their shoulders or sending any kind of message that would imply interest on my part.

Halfway through the game, a mutual friend of Guy #2 and I is spotted across the arena. I say, "Why don't we text him and then stand up and wave?" Guy #2 says, "Okay." He pulls out his spiffy blackberry and sends off a text that says, "Shirah is stupid!!!!" Great. Just great. What, is this 7th grade? A reply comes back. "No, Shirah is a genius. You, on the other hand...."
Thank you! Finally, someone stuck up for me.

All in all, it truly was an uncomfortable night. The worst part is, when He and I returned to the apartment, He chatted with my roommate for a few minutes before leaving. From the impression that his conduct gave her, everything had gone great. He really thought that the date had gone well. Can you believe that?

Needless to say, there will not be a second date.

5 comments:

  1. oh.my.goodness. this is like a dating nightmare!! i'm pretty sure you could submit that story to 17 magazine or something, ahaha. but the good news is, you have a sense of humor;).

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  2. if the dating scene continues in this fashion my sense of humor won't last long, haha, but all is not lost...yet. ;)

    Needless to say, HE won't be accompanying me to the par-tay tomorrow night!!
    Can't wait girl...see ya soon!

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  3. "...(in a slightly funky accent)..."
    Shirah: your way with words will one day become a landmark... mark my words: you will be known.
    BTW: this is about the funniest thing I've read in the past ten years or so. ROFL

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  4. Well honey, it's nice to know things haven't changed much since I was dating about 56 years ago. (...except for the paying for the dinner thing because back then even the dullest of clods knew better than to stick his date for the dough.) Anyway, I dated a boy for my Junior Prom who kept propelling us into other couples on the dance floor and after each collision always followed with the comment, "Geeze, some people's children!" He walked all over my feet while dancing and, true to bad form, never apologized but blamed it on the other dance couples. Then there was a guy that took me to an after-game sock dance, danced the first dance with me, disappeared for the rest of the night, then reappeared just in time to dance the last dance. That went over well.

    In college there was a one time date with an octopus that was all over me the whole evening and after jumping out of his car and sprinting up the stairs of the dorm shouting "thank you for the date...but I don't do "those things"...(and certainly not with strangers) he spread it all over campus that I got "way too serious on the first date."

    But don't worry, hon. The bad ones just make you appreciate the good ones more and give you something to laugh about on "girls night out."

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  5. so we miss your blog...just so you know;)

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