Wednesday, February 15, 2012

First is the Worst (and Last)

Alternate title - I made a bunch of crappy animated gifs.  Emphasis on crappy.
Alternate alternate title - That one time I went on a date with Peter Griffin

We went out to dinner Saturday night with C and Y.  It was kind of a double date.  We had a blast.  More to the point though, is that the couple at the table next to us were CLEARLY bumbling through a first date, and most of our "blast" was due to us mocking them.  You know, up until Fiance pointed out that the guy was still nursing his first glass of wine, and was more than encouraging his lady-friend to polish off the rest of the bottle.  C & Y seemed pretty non-plussed that yes, this dude was totally trying to liquor this gal up to take her home.  It kinda stopped being funny to me at that point.  Cause yeah,  Creeper Alert, code red.

Also, his eyes were actually this huge and buggy, which made it all the 
easier to notice just how often he was eye-groping her.  Gross.

This lead us to a discussion on our first dates as respective couples.  Which in turn lead me to reflect on my WORST FIRST DATE EVER IN THE HISTORY OF THINGS.  Having lived through it, I can now laugh haughtily at it, and so I figured why not take this opportunity to regale it all here on this little blog.  If you've met me in person in the last couple years, you've probably already heard this story, but I think you'll agree even then it's worth pulling up a chair to read again.

And if you were single on this last valentine's day... well, take solace in the fact that you weren't with this guy.

I had met... well let's call him Steve becausethat's his name.  There are enough Steves in the world that I think I can safely assume that he'll still keep some anonymity.  

Anyway, I met Steve through OkCupid*the cheesy dating site I had signed up for, in order to try and meet some guys who were not 18-22 year old college students and therefore dateable (I like to keep high standards)

He was a sweet guy, very good at telling me how pretty I was and how honored he'd be if I let him take me to dinner somewhere nice to celebrate the end of the school year and the brief reprieve summer offered from students. 

We seemed to have enough in common, both loved to read and watch movies, and both looking for a friend before a relationship budded. So a week prior I had finally agreed to his standing offer for a date, and we set a time and date to meet up in Kalamazoo (he was from about an hour away) for dinner. It would certainly be a memorable evening.

Steve called me at 3PM on the idle Wednesday of our planned date.  "Hey, I got to Kalamazoo early, thought maybe we could start this thing up now."  To which I replied; "Well, I'm you know, at work.  Which is why we planned to meet at 6."  A little weird, but I reasoned that he was just excited to finally meet me.  Since my boss at the time filled a secondary role as my love-life cheerleader, she enthusiastically shooed me out the door of the office - "go get dolled up and have fun!"  She ordered.  Sweet, thought I.

I ran down to my apartment, fluffed my hair and put on a fresh coat of mascara.  Then I grabbed Mac and started back to the quad.  I may have agreed to meet a random stranger from the internet, but I wasn't stupid -  he had directions to meet me in the middle of the very crowded campus with my large, menacing looking dog.  Safety first.  

Reaching the quad, two things immediately happened. First, I see a man who was probably still the same dude in all his pictures posted online, but at least 5-7 years older, and without any modicum of the attractiveness I had expected. I don't count myself as a really superficial person, but folks, I was looking at the real life version of Peter Griffin.
it wasn't this guy, but we're pretty close.

The second thing that immediately happened, was that Steve looked at me... and started to cry.
Um, are you... what's wrong?” I said, worried that maybe my picture was as misleading as his was, and that he was disappointed enough in my looks to be driven to tears.

No, nothing. It's just – your dog.   My parent's dog just died a few weeks ago, and your dog reminded me of her so much and...” And he sniffled that kind of sniffle that a guy does because he fails to recognize that the snarf sound created when they hork back the snot from his throat is about the most gag-inducing sound known to humans.

I dug some kleenex out of my purse and handed them over, hoping he could compose himself quickly before any more people that I worked with every day saw that I had reduced my date to a sniffling mess of a person within the first three seconds of meeting. “I'm so sorry to hear that. What kind of dog was she?

Sweetie Pie was a shitzu. The best little shitzu ever born.”
Oh.” I replied, trying really hard not to laugh. “Mac's a doberman. Pretty big guy.

I walked him to one of the halls I oversaw so he could use the restroom and try and compose himself. A few moments later Steve pulled himself back together, changed the subject to work and we walked off campus toward downtown (we dropped Mac off first).  As he asked me about my job, he reached over and grabbed my hand. 
Personal space bubble? Totally invaded. 

I don't quite remember my answers to his small talk questions, I was too busy trying not to be rude and yank my hand back out of his. Fifteen very long minutes later, we arrived at a newer little Italian place I had been excited to try. He held the door open for me, and as we were lead to our table, he informed the waiter: “We will have a bottle of your finest Chardonnay, and two orders of the Eggplant Parmesan.

Wait. Did he just order for me?

I decided to let it go – maybe this was his shoddy way of trying to save face and get back some man points following his earlier display of emotions.

After we had been seated, and I had tried out my glass of fifty-four dollar a bottle Chardonnay (I'm sure it was fine, but I am really more of a beer gal), Steve leaned across the table and launched into what I could only describe as a “dating resume.”

So, I'm 32 years old, I'm a graduate of [insert a university name here], I have a degree in music and now I'm a phone consultant at Sprint...” 

You know what, there was a pretty long spiel, but to sum up the highlights, actual quotes included; 

  • I got a twenty-seven on my ACT in high school.
  •  I'm a hopeless romantic who really does like long walks on the beach

and my personal favorite was: 

  • I'm a level six dungeon master**.

I fought the urge to both laugh in his face, and to leave.  In the back of my head I knew.  I knew that I couldn't leave now because this was shaping up to be a fantastic story to tell later.  I have foresight like woah.

So.” Said Steve, grabbing my hand to hold once again, this time under the table. “Tell me about yourself.”

Well, I...” I also knew this wasn't going to go anywhere past a first date, so I was trying to formulate an answer that would be as opposed to his speech as possible, “I don't really remember or care what I got on my ACT. I generally dislike the beach, and I'd classify myself as a cynic way before I'd say I was romantic. Um, and I'm not much of a gamer.”

Perfect!” He almost shouted. “Opposites attract! I feel such a connection with you!” Well, sh*t.
Day and night he spoke.  Each word more useless than the next.

The evening of awkward continued, with Steve asking such forward questions as “Can you tell me about your faith?”, “How many children do you plan on having?”, and the coup de grace: “Who was the last person you were in love with, and how did that relationship end?

I was totally taken aback. “I don't think I can answer that for you Steve.”
Well, let me answer it for you from my end then, maybe it'll spark something in you to share.” he replied.

I dated a gal all through college named Andrea. She was the love of my life. On the eve of our graduation, I proposed to her with a fourteen carat gold, diamond ring with “Love you always and forever, Steve” engraved on the inside. And as I was kneeling, she dumped me.

He was rubbing the top of my hand with his thumb.

I was looking around the restaurant, noticing that the other patrons of the restaurant had clearly noted how poorly the date was going, some of them openly pointing and laughing at our table.

Have you ever been to Europe?” Steve asked me, as I feigned an itch on my neck so as to pull my hand away from his.

Hmm? No. Never been.” I had completely lost interest in this man, and wanted nothing more than for the date to be over, so I could go home and tell the story to my friends over a drink while we all laughed at how bat-sh*t crazy this guy was.

We should go. Maybe this fall. It would be great to show someone around my favorite haunts.

I really only half heard any of that, I had waved down the waiter and given him pleading eyes as I asked for the check. He seemed to understand I was enduring some cruel and unusual punishment, and brought it back pretty quickly.

Steve immediately grabbed for it whipping out a credit card, as if I might have tried to pay for a dinner I didn't order. I made sure that there were leftovers that I could bring home, carrying it in the hand closest to Steve so I didn't have to hold his hand again.  On our walk, Steve continued regaling me about that one time he was in Europe, and how he just knew I'd love it.

When we reached the corner of campus,  I politely asked Steve where he had parked his car.  Homeboy needed to LEAVE already.  He looked at me very confused and then winked and said "Don't I get to come in for a few minutes?"

I... what?!

"um, well I'm leaving to visit Wisconsin in a few days and I really need to clean and pack, so..."  Okay, I didn't outright say "dude you creep me out," but if you're a guy, you tell me, you could have read into this, right?  Instead of picking up what I was laying down, Steve gave me wiggly eyebrows (gross) and said "I could come in and watch."

In future re-tellings of this story, I have had it pointed out to me that maybe Steve thought I was some kind of pervert and that "clean and pack" was some kind of kinky code for some voyeuristic fetish I harbored.  For the record, no I have not googled what "clean and pack" might be sex code for.  I DO NOT WANT TO KNOW.

Getting back on track.  So I walk Steve to his car, and I shrug and go "Welp, it was nice meeting you..."  

Steve turned and grabbed me into a hug, simultaneously saying "so when's date number twooooo?" and coming in with lips puckered for what I only assume was to suck on my face.

I stepped backward out of his grip.  And when I say I stepped out of it, I can tell you with 100% certainty that my brain did not do that.  My body did.  On it's own, with no mental coercion.  My body went "uh no bad idea."

And I went "Oh, there isn't going to be a date number two."
Wanna guess what happened next?
Go on, guess.

That's right.

"But I thought we had SUCH a connection!" He whimpered through round number two of tears.  I consoled him as best I could without giving way to another date, and without touching him.  Eventually he got back in his car and drove away.  Thirty seconds later I had deleted his phone number from my cell, and was on a call with Kate, a conversation that roughly started "You are not going to believe... get out a bottle of wine, I'm on my way over."

Which was reasonable, as by then it was a little after 5PM.  A rational time for dinner and drinks.

*A year later I met Fiance on that same web-space, so it's not all bad.
**let me be real:  if you play Dungeons and Dragons, more power to you.  It's not my bag, and I even had something to that effect in my online profile.  And THAT's why I'm digging on his comment, not because he's a super nerd.  Let your freak flag fly and all that.

Please, someone top this story.  
What was your worst dating experience?  
Share in the comments!

Random Section Time!

1.  Dreaded 29 Update:  Still at -6, 23 to go.  Kind of a bummer, but I noted this morning that my engagement ring is loose.  After conferring with BFFJ over the internets, it was determined that I need to start keeping track of my measurements too, because maybe I might be exercising enough for muscle to be forming.  Which we all know is heavier than fat.  So there's that.

2.  Fiance made up for all the bad dates in the world by being awesome on Valentine's day even though he wasn't home.  He left me a scavenger hunt of notes, which ended in a new bottle of perfume.  And flowers.  He's awesome like that, and I have my very own blog, so I'm allowed to gush on him a bit.

3.  On the note of the Dreaded 29 - I need new music to keep me entertained while I work out.  Tell me what your #1 workout jam is.  Just the one.  That way I figure I'll get everyone's best music choices, and a pretty good range.  It's exciting really.


AJ Hauser said...

This is... hilarious. Sorry Steve, but hopefully this was a learning experience. I feel bad for the guy but seriously... who does this?

Rob Oh said...

This reminds me, I too dated a crier last May... and the best part was, I had no idea what started the crying (not even a language barrier thing).

So I live in a relatively rural town in a very conservative country. I can't just go out and be like "Hey, wanna go on a date?" I put up an ad on an online site geared towards guys clearly stating that I am not Japanese and am not fluent, but I don't want to date someone who is interested in me solely for these reasons (free English lesson?).
I got a number of replies, and finally settled on one guy in his late 20s who seemed nice. We met in front of the community center and from there went to "Restaurant City (Yes, the facebook game is in real time here...)"
It started to get weird when he began to tell me about all of his love failures (1 sided love, red flag?) and how he got tricked out of money (another red flag). Meanwhile he was eating way more than his share at the Baby Face Planet restaurant.
I shrugged it off as nervousness and suggested we go to Karaoke, so we didn't have to talk anymore and I could see what kind of music he likes.
Here's where it got weird... He only chose songs with soprano singers, and sung them in that voice. Meanwhile I'm in the corner singing 90s music cuz it's what I grew up with and have the best chance of knowing the lyrics.
On his last song, He started weeping and dropped the mic in the middle of the booth, then tried to rest his head on my shoulder, so I panicked and went to the restroom. When I got back he had collected himself and suggested we head back as it was getting late. as we were walking along the riverbank (which was the fastest path) he suddenly sat down and looked at me as if he expected me to sit next to him... I did at a respectful distance away, and he started to confess his love for me in the formal Japanese way, while trying to lean in and kiss me... I got up, and was just flooding my mouth with any excuse I could translate on the spot(It probably sounded like the scene from Christmas Vacation when Rusty doesn't want to untangle the christmas lights and says he must feed the reindeer) Then I just started walking towards my bike at the community center.
I have seen him around town a bit since then, but always try to duck away (which is hard given my height and blondness)
He kept sending me mails to my cellphone email address for about 2 months asking when we would meet again, and when replying never didn't cut it, I finally just ignored them...

I guess some guys just don't read the air... In Japanese it's called KY (kuuki yomenai)... though maybe it was a culture thing in my case?

Rikki said...

That might be the worst first date I have ever heard about. I went on a terrible first date right after I moved here to Kentucky and as you might expect, he made it very clear that he had no idea how bad of a date it really was.

Suffice it to say that I added multiple criteria to my "What I am Looking For in a Man" list after that date, including:
-Cannot be on a liquid diet
-Must wear a helmet if riding a motorcycle
-Does not think it's acceptable to buy presents for other girls while on the first date
-Does not check himself out in every mirror / window / slightly reflective surface we pass, especially if he's over weight and not attractive in the least
-No talking through highly intense movies

Kp said...

Oh my gosh, I am so amused by all the commentary this has gotten. Also these two dates Rob and Rikki talked about made me laugh out loud. I think, what we've learned here, is that 1. Crying is a bad idea on a first date, and 2. You should probably not buy gifts for other girls on your date (what!? what did he buy?)

Sullykins said...

Last year, after many exchanged emails, I agreed to go out on a date with Jim from Okcupid. He was 29...a little older than I usually date, but I thought, "Hey! He might be more mature than these college assholes!" Turns out he was more 'mature' than I thought.
I met him at The Strutt, because there was no way I was going to show him my apartment in Hoben. His profile pic was definitely taken on a better day and from a arms up, side angle. But anyway, he gave me a big hug, which lasted a little too long and said he was so happy that we were finally going out. We got in his car and started driving to Putters, during which time, he grabbed my hand and held it the entire drive. At Putters, he tried to show me how to putt better, and mind you, I was wearing a skirt. I moved away and said that I knew what I was doing. He just started telling me his life story...and why he needed to find love soon. I was already getting the awkward vibe. After our round ended, he took me to Carrabba's, where he ordered for me. I hated the dish he chose. During dinner, he kept using his foot to rub my leg, and kept reaching for my hands.
I was pretty much ready to send my stress code to my friend halfway through dinner. After we finished out meal, he started asking very forward questions for a first date. When did I want to get married, and have kids? When was my longest relationship? Did I believe in love at first sight? Argh. So I told him that I didn't really believe marriage, didn't like children, and was skeptical and cynical about love. Then I told him that my longest relationship was a year and 6 months, at which point he says, I would probably PROPOSE TO YOU AFTER ABOUT 8 MONTHS. That was my que to leave. I told him that I had a important meeting to go to. He said to me, why don't you skip your meeting and we head back to my place. Ew. I told him no, and to take me back to the Strutt. After we got back to the Strutt, he pulled me in for a very awkward hug and looked down at me. He said, "I had a great time with you honey" and proceeded to lean down to kiss me. I promptly put my head down and back away. He asked me when I would be free to see him again and I shook my head, told him that we were at completely different stages in our lives and that it wasn't going to work out. He looked like he was about to cry, but I didn't stay long enough to find out. Worst first date EVER.
But okcupid isn't that bad, I'm currently seeing a guy who is pretty much awesome.
I'm glad things are working out for you and Chris!

Kate Y said...

Oh... I remember this fondly! :)

Nicole said...

Man, it doesn't matter how many times I hear/read that story. It is guaranteed to make me laugh out loud.

Sunny said...


This post and the comments make me feel much better about my own "worst date."

Before I forget, I am loving "Moves like jagger" to work out to.

I'll give you the highlights of some of my worst dates...

#1: Started out great... brought me hot chocolate when we met up since it was a cold night. Wants to take me to a great restaurant in down town Chicago. After walking around IN THE COLD for a good 45 minutes, he finally askes for directions, only to learn the restaurant is now closed. End up at a bar, drinking on an empty stomach. Guy tells me about how his wife left him after he was diagnosed with testicular cancer. Could I love him through that?

#2: The dude didn't talk AT ALL, ALL NIGHT. Walked about 2 FEET in front of me. I spent several hours sitting at the desk of his residence hall with him while he checked id's. Best conversation of the night was with his roommate, who was dating a girl from my hometown. I went home in tears and was startled when he called for Date #2. And when he found out I wasn't a virgin (he was a God freak), he claimed that God loved me despite of my mistakes and so did he.

#3: Guy calls on the phone and is a total dud. Says he'll call the next night and I'm dreading it. He calls and invites me to dinner, but I'd already eaten, but since I got the feeling he wouldn't go away until I went out with him, I said yes. He suggested Taco Bell and then didn't even pay.

I married one of them.

Kp said...

Sunny, I laughed so hard at your closing remark ("I married one of them"), I cried.