Fine. I’m lying. It was more like three… almost. The reason for such outlandish exaggeration, however, is that three dates in one week is only one less than the total amount of dates I’ve been on this year. This was mostly because, after I failed… ahem… excuse me; I mean “did not pass” my graduate portfolio back in November, I went full-on Miss Havisham and sequestered myself until May.
I set the goals of passing my portfolio, getting my degree, and accepting a Librarian postion. Then… I would date. So, despite my online presence in profile format, it was not until June, that I actually met anyone… after I had been offered a job. Even then, I wasn’t super eager to take on the dating world, since the free dating sites involve far too much weeding and, frankly, I kind of hate dating. I already told you about how shocked my GP was at my startling lack of a sex life and how that led to my match.com membership, but I must give credit where credit is due when it comes to my sudden motivation, to, you know… try.
While there are some outstanding disaster stories in the world of online dating, and really just dating in general, there are success stories. I haven’t actually had any and the bad stories are just so funny that I can’t keep them to myself, but make no mistake; I don’t specifically hate online dating. Actually, I think it’s awesome to be able to let someone know, upfront, that I’m a divorced, practicing Catholic Librarian with somewhat conservative political views and a love for dogs that jeopardizes my own safety.
“It’s a PUPPY!!!!!!”
I love the reverse, too. I enjoy knowing before I spend time with a guy, that he’s single, has a career, his own place, and a functioning relationship with his family. When you meet a nice guy in a bar, it could take up to a half hour of pleasantries to find out he’s not quite divorced. Hell, it could take a few dates, as it did with Gail and the guy who lied about his name. Torturing herself after receiving a call from his crying wife, she called me, knowing I’d tell her what she needed to hear and then make her laugh with offensive jokes.
Me: “Please. You had no idea and you only made-out with him a little. It’s not like you fucked him… surprisingly.”
Gail: “Bitch…. Ugh!!!! I just feel so awful… motherfucker!!!!”
Me: “I think the word you’re looking for is ‘husband.'”
See. Crazy people exist in the real world. The difference is, that guy’s dating profile/Craigslist ad, might be completely open about the fact that he’s married, because someone might just take him up on it and save him the trouble of lying. That’s the real perk of online dating for me. The facts are listed and no one has to talk about it.
Maybe that’s the reason for all of the success stories I’ve read on blogs and received in the comments from people who understood that my Freshly Pressed post … and then I died alone: My latest online dating pet peeves was not a spew of hatred for men online or online dating, but humorous venting. One success story in particular struck a cord, though. For awhile now, I’ve been reading the blog of a 28-year-old Canadian woman who’s really just thrown herself into the dating world. She’s had bad dates, good dates, hilarious dates, and heartbreak, but she’s kept at it. Just last week she announced that she met a guy she really liked. They may not get married and have lots of babies or anything, but it is a success story and her determination was inspiring. I started to think about how I’m going to be 26 in a little over a week. I’m okay with being single right now, but at 28 (in the Midwest that’s every one else’s 31), I think I’d be pretty disappointed. So why wait? Why not throw myself into the dating world right now and see what happens? This led to… The Week of 1004 (::cough:: three… almost… :::cough:::) Dates. I’ll remind you that I call all men by their job title, not because I’m a gold digger, but because I like knowing they have one.
Date 1 – Saturday – Insurance Salesman
Encouraged by the aforementioned Jane at Single, Not Hopeless, I decided to be a little less picky about height. Sure, I’d love a towering guy with broad shoulders…
… oh let’s not bother with the description. Him. I’d love him, but that’s not realistic and it’s a little unreasonable since I’m a whopping 5’5.5″/5’6″, myself. My profile hadn’t been too unfair, listing 5’10” as a minimum height, but we are talking minimum here. So, I changed it to 5’8″, which means I can still wear heels without dwarfing him and I’m a girl who likes her heels. So, when Insurance Salesman messaged me, I was cool with the 5’8″ height. He looked pretty cute in his photos and he was personable in his e-mails and texts. We arranged to have coffee after I got off work on Saturday.
Oh. Em. Jingles. This was the bad date from sitcoms, y’all. For starters, I had texted Insurance Salesman about going to Starbuck’s, after he e-mailed “So when do you want to get coffee?”, though we hadn’t even mentioned meeting. He said he wanted “real coffee.” I said Starbuck’s was fine with me, but we could go somewhere different instead. He responded with…
… and gave me an intersection. Well, there is a coffee shop called Cool Beans on one of the streets he mentioned, but it was on a different cross street. I texted and told him I was on my way, but was confused by the address and he said we’d agreed to Starbuck’s. He had been using the expression “cool beans,” not naming a coffee shop. I was a little irked, because I’d told him I was on my way to Cool Beans, which was probably less than a few miles away and he’d previously said he didn’t mind driving any distance, so I could choose where I liked. I felt like he should’ve offered to do Cool Beans instead, since he wanted “real coffee” anyway, because that would’ve been the chivalrous thing to do. I let it go, though, because it was a small thing and he thought we’d agreed to Starbuck’s. Then I couldn’t find the Starbuck’s, because I’m a ‘burbs girl and we were meeting in the city. I got there about five minutes late and, though he’d been texting me with directions, he wasn’t even there yet. He said he had been waiting in a parking lot nearby… weird and probably a lie, since he was just late and totally could’ve gone to Cool Beans. Again, though, whatever. These would be stupid reasons not to give him a chance.
I have never met anyone online who did not look like his picture. This guy had either Photoshopped his pictures or he was the most photogenic person alive. Honestly, it’s likely the pictures were from several years ago. I think he was honest about his age (28) and just didn’t realize that he no longer looked like that. For one, he was not 5’8″. I’m starting to think that 5’8″ doesn’t exist, because no one who says they’re 5’8″ is ever actually 5’8″. He also had about 30 more pounds on him and far less hair than his pictures showed… and he was sweating… a lot. It’s August and I understand that. The guy was nervous. Okay. But his clothes were also visibly dirty, sort of like they’d been worn the previous day. I stood, shook his hand and introduced myself. In closer proximity, I realized he also kind of smelled. He introduced himself and then dropped my hand and turned around and walked away.
I wasn’t even sure what he was doing at first, because he hadn’t commented. When I realized he was walking across the store to the counter, I followed. He ordered and just waited.
Okaaaay. Am I ordering or is he done and going to pay for only his order?
IS: “You want anything?”
After we sat down and started talking, he told me that he’d spent the day recovering from his hangover after staying up drinking with his friends all Friday night. He had some kind of nervous tick and kept squinting… constantly. However, that didn’t hide his painfully obvious physical assessment of me as he looked me up and down.
I asked what Insurance Salesman thought of his job and he told me it was boring and he talks to assholes all day. My profile specifically says I want to be with someone who enjoys their career. He doesn’t even like his and went on to talk about how it didn’t matter, because he makes so much money. Then… he started swearing. You read my blogs. You know I swear. I’m not particularly offended by it… when I’m familiar with someone. I didn’t even know this guy and he kept saying “shit” and “fuck” loudly in a Starbuck’s. It was awkward and embarrassing, but I kept trying to talk to him. Soon, the topic of T.V. shows came up.
Okay, okay. I know that “Team Shane” is not a popular Walking Dead standpoint. I’m not saying it is. I have such a strong tendency to sympathize with villains that I once told Gaily she’d love Game of Thrones, because the Kaleesi is a badass heroine. Her response was to ask if I was sure she was a heroine, because I don’t have a strong history of siding with the intended protagonist, bringing up the time I defended Cruella DeVille for doing her part to combat over-breeding. So… when I expressed my viewpoint that Shane was the stronger character in Walking Dead, I didn’t really expect agreement. I also didn’t expect downright anger.
Me: “I just felt like they sort of had him go bad overnight. It seemed like they just got tired of the love triangle and decided to make him the villain.”
IS: “NO. It was obvious that he was the bad guy when he was looking through the scope at his friend!”
Me: “Um… not really. He was upset that his new family was being taken from him. He didn’t kill him.”
IS: “NO.You knew he was thinking it! You knew he wanted to!”
Duuuude, it’s fiction and this is a date. Are you seriously getting pissed at me over my defense of a fictional character in a show about the fucking zombie apocalypse?!?! You don’t know anything about these people, because they aren’t real! Also, I’m sorry, but the world is overrun with folks who are eating each other. It’s survival of the fittest, yo, and I would’ve let that guy get eaten so I could save the kid, too. Hell, I would’ve left the little girl behind after two friggin’ days. Ain’t no place for bleeding hearts.
When we’d brought up The Walking Dead, I’d told Insurance Salesman how frustrated I was when one of my students told me about a character dying in the season I hadn’t seen.
IS: “Well, next season…”
Me: “Well, don’t tell me.”
IS: “No, but it hasn’t even happened yet.”
Then he went on to ruin The Walking Dead for me, because he read about a main actor leaving. Double ewe tea eff, dude?!?! I just told you not to tell me! After that, he’d bring up movies and I’d tell him I hadn’t seen them, like with This Is 40 and he would ruin the entire fucking story for me! I’d tell him not to and he’d just say…
IS: “No, but…”
Stop talking! By this point, I was more or less done and trying to figure out a polite way to leave. Then, Insurance Salesman mentioned Firefly and I told him it was a shame it got canceled. Then, he started getting pissed again.
IS: “Well, Fox fucking ruined Firefly. It was all their fucking fault!”
::The lunatic shouted in a Starbuck’s”
Me: ::confused by and totally over his rage:: “How’s that?”
IS: “They aired it during fucking football season and it kept getting rescheduled. People were like ‘There’s this awesome fucking show on… sometimes’, so no one watched it and they had to fucking cancel it.”
It was not long before I declared that I had to get home to my dog. We’d been talking for less than 30 minutes and I assumed it was obvious that I was uninterested as Insurance Salesman walked me to the car.
IS: “So, um… I’d like to… I’d like to um.. I’d like to… you know… take you out to dinner sometime… or like… maybe watch a show together.”
Yeah. I totally want you to scream at me over another T.V. show. My panties are already wet.
Me: “Yeah. Sure. Text me.”
What the fuck?!? Don’t encourage him if you’ve no intention of seeing him again, Belle!!!!
I called Gail and my Gramma after the date and declared…
“I’m going to die alone!”
Gail’s response was to give him a second date, because she got a much abridged version. Gramma’s response was…
“Well, you don’t need to be goin’ out with a man with a dirty mouth like that!”
Insurance Salesman never did text me. It appears his only redeeming quality was the ability to take the hint.
I initially planned to write this as one blog, but I’m seeing two more dates is going to be a novel. This has just been upgraded to a series. Stay tuned.