Issue February 7, 2006

Bad dates, indeed

Winner 1:
Payback’s a bitch
By Kim Woodring
         It all began when my sister, Diane, decided she would fix me up with this guy, “Joe.” She worked with him at General Electric for more than nine years and knew him pretty well. “Everyone wants to go out with Joe,” she would tell me every chance she could. “He’s cute, he’s about 28 and he’s this and he’s that …” Against my better judgment, I broke down and reluctantly agreed. She wrote my number down and gave it to him on her lunch break, beaming and giddy, like she’d just sold someone the winning lottery ticket at Super America. Needless to say, he called. We made the date.

        The night of our date he called to say his car wasn’t running and asked if I could pick him up at his house. (First red flag.) OK, I thought, I’ll not postpone for another time … let’s get this over with quick and everyone will be happy … I trust my sister. She would not put me in harm’s way. DAMN YOU, DIANE! Joe gave me good directions and I drove to his house, go to the door, and he answers. Cute! Dresses nice, nice smile. I enter to find he has three kids, ages 3, 5 and an infant. The baby is lying on the floor in the middle of being changed. A major changing, I might add. The other two kids are crying to be fed. “I’m sorry, he said, “but my ex just dropped the kids into my lap about 15 minutes ago, do you mind going into the kitchen and fixing the kids some dinner? I guess you’ve figured out by now, we’ll be staying in tonight for our date, or you can go.”

         Well, I couldn’t just leave! What kind of person would I be if I just ran out, I thought. I WAS given that option to go, but no. I’d HAVE to reschedule the date, right? God forbid! Would I be obligated to do so? What about my sister? I’d never hear the end of it. What am I doing? OK, this isn’t really all that bad. I trust Diane. My mind was racing. I’ll do the right thing. So I stayed. Big mistake. 

         The kids were horrible little brats, spitting, screaming and kicking me. I was gracious and smiled as the 5-year-old handed me the dirty diaper that had been laying on the floor, long forgotten. “They’re just hungry,” Joe whined. I sat on the couch postponing my destiny in the kitchen. Joe sat next to me, grabbed the remote and turned on the TV. Well, I thought to myself, a new twist on dinner and a movie. My sense of humor always seems to kick in during uncomfortable and awkward moments. Great defense mechanism. I cook, God knows what, in a stranger’s house for his two destructive, vociferous kids while we watch a rerun of “Walker, Texas Ranger.” Perfect.

         Was my sister at home secretly laughing? She knew the deal. I knew it! Was I being punk’d? As we sat on the couch, his hands started to run up my shirt and mechanically, clumsily, he tried to cop a feel. “Hey, slow down … What the hell are you doing, Joe?!” “I’m sorry, it’s just been so long since I was with a real woman,” he said. Second red flag. He apologized over and over again. I began to feel sorry for him. God, 28 years old, three kids, responsibilities, so much and so young! I decided to stay. After all, he was cute and I really didn’t have anything else to do. I had hopes it might get better. After all, I WAS given the option to leave earlier. It didn’t get better. We talked for awhile, mostly about him and his cynical view of the world and women. How many red flags do I need?

         He then decided to tell me that something on him wasn’t real and he felt compelled to tell me before the night would continue. You know that feeling you get just before you catch yourself falling back in your chair? Man, oh man … deep breath … here we go … “Ok, but first,” I said, “do you have a beer or something I could drink down with this confession?” My curiosity WAS a little piqued. “Yeah, in the fridge, next to the …” his words were muffled by the screaming kids from hell. When I opened the fridge, I found that he kept his jeans in there! All nicely folded and stacked like you’d find at The Gap. I got my beer and slowly closed the door. I stood there for a second — were my eyes blinded by the fumes from the dirty forgotten diaper? I opened the door again. Yep, I could see just fine … stacks of jeans on the shelf right next to the Miller Lite and numerous mystery dishes covered with aluminum foil.

         I go back to the couch. Secure in the knowledge that I was now grabbing that option to leave this house of terrors. “There’s this one thing I want to show you! “Joe said anxiously as he turned his head away from me. He then pulled his dentures out of his mouth! Joe, 28, is now slowly handing his teeth to me, sadly whining, “Can you see? See?” What the F?!? Startled beyond words, my hands covered my mouth as I gasped, “You freak … GOD, and what’s with your pants in the fridge? YOU WEIRDO!” With his teeth cupped in his hands, as he’s sliding off the couch in agony, he says in this muffled voice and flapping gums, “I like to put ’em on cold!”

         I literally flew to the door … But just as my hand reached the knob, there’s a loud pounding on the door. IT’S HIS EX-WIFE, screaming, “I WANT TO SEE WHAT SHE LOOKS LIKE! I WANT TO SEE HER, JOE! LET ME IN, you @#$%&*!!!” I opened the door frantically. She fell in on the floor. I blurted out, “I don’t know what you want to see, psycho, but this is what ‘freaked out’ looks like! You can have him, I’m outta here!” I ran to my car, but I was blocked in by her car behind me. Luckily there was this kid in the car on the passenger’s side. He looked about 16 and I asked him if he could move his mom’s car so that I could get out. He said, ”That’s my GIRLFRIEND, not my mom!, you #$%&*.” I hopped into my car and drove through the front yard, doughnut style, and fled the house of Barnum & Bailey … knowing in my heart no one’s going to believe this.

         You know what they say about paybacks, Sis?

Winner 2:
Pubelicly humiliating
By Jessica Francis
         My worst, weirdest date began to unfold about two months ago. In all my 23 years, never, have I ever, encountered such an experience. I met “Jim” in a bar (first red flag) and proceeded to give him my number. He seemed a little introverted, but I was intrigued by this. 
         A couple days later, Jim calls and suggests that we hang out later that evening. I agree, on account that he show up NO SOONER than an hour (I had things to do — my hair). So no sooner than 6:00. Low and behold, at promptly 6:03, there is a knock on my door. Jim. I open the door. 
         “Hey, how’s it going?” He steps forward to embrace me in a life-threatening squeeze. “It’s sooo good to see you,” he says breathlessly.
         “Yeah, you too.”
         We go have a seat, me in a chair, and he on the edge of the couch by me. After no more than 30 seconds of small talk, he gets up and STRADDLES me in the chair.
         “Bet you’ve never had a guy you didn’t even know come into your house and straddle you, huh?”
         “You’ve got me there,” I said, nervously straining over my shoulder out of fear he was about to kiss me already. I thought to myself, “OK, I’ve got an eccentric character here. He’s just trying to make an impression.” I quickly suggested that we go pick up some drinks for a little pre-drinking before making our way out (falsely being under the impression that we were actually going to go somewhere and do something.)
         So I drive us to Old Town Liquors, at this point realizing he did not have a car. We’re checking out the beers and decide on a case of Newcastle — $14. I politely offer to pay half, fully expecting him to pull out the old, “No, no, I’ve got it,” but to my surprise and faint dismay, he accepts my 10-dollar bill and goes to the counter.
         It was at this point I noticed a talented local musician and friendly acquaintance in the store. I go to chat with him, only to be so rudely interrupted by Jim, claiming that he has accidentally “left his wallet at home.” At least be creative, Jim. Don’t mock me. Upon this news, I hand him a twenty, say my goodbyes and we leave the store, so much for actually going out. I’m not picking up this guy’s tab all night.
         As we are getting in the car, Jim begins what will become a long barrage of questions about the acquaintance I was talking with in the store.
         “So, who was that guy?”
         “Just this guy I know.”
         “How do you know him?”
         “I’ve just been to a lot of his shows.”
         “What does he play?”
         “Guitar, mostly”
         “Hmm. Well, I bet he’s not as good of a musician as me.”
         “Umm, I don’t know, he’s pretty good.”
         “So, do you have another cigarette?”
         “You don’t have cigarettes, either? You’re pretty unprepared for this. Can I get my change back now so I can go get more cigarettes?”
         “Oh! Oh yeah, here.”
         This ship is quickly sinking, and it’s only been 15 minutes. So we arrive back at my house, and start drinking some beer. After looking around my home, we are standing in my room and Jim is looking at my books. He falls upon a book he apparently lives for, and his response went as follows:
         “You like this book?! Oh … oh my God. This … this could really be something big. You are it, girl. I … I think you’re the one for me.” He stares intently.
         “Ummm, ya think?” I respond, a little nervous for my life.
         After a while more of him smoking my cigs and drinking my beer, he proceeds to inform me that he is homeless as well. He quickly tries to save face by telling me that he used to live/play with the members of Slint (by this he likely meant, “slept on their couch for a couple weeks”). He gets up and goes to the kitchen to get more beer. He returns to the living room and sketchily asks, “Sooo, I see you have some chili in your freezer?” What is he doing looking in the freezer?
         “Uh, yeah,” I respond, “Are you hungry?”
         “A little,” he says.
         “Well, the chili is my roommate’s, but everything in the cabinet is mine. Have at it.” Mind you, I don’t care about the fact that he is eating my food (and apparently plundering through my kitchen). I just think it’s a little odd, being as I haven’t known him more than an hour.
          So I wait around a little, and he returns to the living room with an extra large bowl of shells and cheese, with tuna. Apparently the shells and cheese alone wouldn’t have cut it. HE ADDED THE CAN OF TUNA. Both of which items were the only two in the cabinet that were my roommate’s, who I will have to give $4 to cover. After some quick math, I conceded that I had so far slid $21 in the whole due to this date.
          I pretend not to be repulsed by his quick consumption. After a few more beers, he starts staring at my feet.
         “You have really nice feet. Can I see them?”
         He takes my bare foot and begins inspecting it. CLOSELY. He’s going on and on with my foot in his lap. He looks up at me. I look at him. He slowly starts lowering his head down … “Do you mind?” he says sickeningly.
         “YES! You cannot suck my foot!” (especially after that little meal he just ate).
         People always ask at this point in the story why I had not thrown him out yet. The truth is he just kept topping himself in weirdness. I wanted to see what he’d possibly do next. It was fascinating, like someone was playing a prank on me. I was truly expecting Ashton Kutcher to burst through the door and give me an awkward hug. Later, I unfortunately mention the fact that one of my two roommates is moving out one month early.
         “I have an idea,” says Jim. “Why don’t you let me move in? I mean, I’d pay rent and everything.”
         “Yeah, I don’t think that’s too good of an idea. Bridget wouldn’t be too pleased if a stranger was living here.”
          After a couple more beers, Jim excuses himself to the bathroom. Keep in mind we have been the only people in the house for the past three hours, also that I have been to the bathroom multiple times due to multiple beers. Jim exits the bathroom, which I then enter. I walk into the bathroom, look into the toilet, and to my shock and horror … PUBES. Lots of pubes. Big, satisfying chunks of trimmed pubes. I turn around to the sink. MORE PUBES. The toilet I can almost understand, but the sink? How did that happen? It has been suggested that perhaps he needed to prop his leg up there to get to those hard-to-reach areas. OK, firstly, this guy plundered around in my bathroom until he found a pair of scissors to cut his pubes with. THEN, hacked off some more in the sink? Worst of all, HE LEFT THE EVIDENCE! Why? It was at this point I realized I was going to have to get rid of the pubes. My roommates were coming home soon and were unlikely to point this guy as the culprit. So I did it.
         Upon exiting the bathroom, at a total loss for words, I inform Jim I am supposed to hang out with a friend at 10:00.
         “Does she have any beer?” he asks.
         “No. She doesn’t even drink beer.”
         I sit back and wait for him to take the initiative to get out. I’m doing anything to avoid conversation with him, searching for new ring tones, making phone calls. An hour passes and he’s still there.
         “Listen, I’m an hour late.”
         “Does this mean I’m getting the old heave ho?”
         “Yes, yes it does.”
         So he goes for the door, conveniently forgetting his watch and CD, which I run out after him with. And so concluded the worst date ever. Don’t think it ends there, the weirdness continued with later run-ins. (Hell no I didn’t go on another date!) But that’s another story …

Honorable Mentions:
The terrible, horrible, no-good, very-bad date
BY Kevin Gibson
(disclaimer: Kevin is a frequent contributor to LEO and was not eligible to enter this contest. But he does have a great story, and here it is …)
         What you are about to read is true. Only the names have been changed, to protect the innocent and the unimaginable.
         Having divorced a year before, I had been interested in getting to know my co-worker, “Renee,” for several months; we’d gone to lunch once and spoken on the phone a few times, and we had exchanged countless e-mails. But I hadn’t yet procured an official “date,” due in no small part to the fact she had recently separated and had filed for divorce.
         When she mentioned attending a University of Louisville basketball game with me, I was giddy. We made plans for that Saturday, a late afternoon game. I was to pick her up at her father’s house in the Highlands because, well, her dad wanted to meet me. (Yes!) I arrived and had a pleasant enough conversation with Dad before whisking his daughter away to the game. She made a point of telling me she had bought a new outfit for our date (Yes!), and she looked wonderful in her new red sweater. Her long, chestnut hair resting on her shoulders, pink lips moist and her beautiful skin aglow. We arrived at the game early and decided to get a beer before we found our seats. We sat talking and we soon got to the subject of her recent divorce and mine. Strangely, she mentioned in passing that she’d been keeping company she probably shouldn’t have been keeping since her husband moved out; she said — in a tone one might employ to say “I’ve got an itch I can’t seem to reach” — that she had been “snorting too much of that white stuff.” What? “But you probably don’t do that, do you?” she said, and laughed. Uh, no. She changed the subject.
         It didn’t take long for her to drink her beer, and I was right behind her. Before the game got started, we went down to the concession stand and got two more, along with some snacks. I couldn’t stop wondering if she’d been joking about the white stuff. She had been joking, right? On the way back up to our seats, the game having started, we paused to briefly watch the action. The security guard told us we had to keep moving. As we started up to our seats, Renee said, sarcastically I assumed, “Keep moving, a**hole!” The guard, thinking she was talking to him, responded with a threat to keep it down or be ejected from the game. I pulled Renee away and convinced the guard she’d been talking to me.
         When we got back to our seats, Renee, still inexplicably annoyed with the guard, accidentally spilled a few drops of beer on the gentleman in front of us. He didn’t say anything, so she decided to pretend it never happened. A few minutes later, his wife sat down next to him. Moments afterward, the woman said loudly, “How rude. What kind of person doesn’t apologize for spilling beer on you?” To which Renee responded, “You want some of this, b*tch?” What the? I pulled her away (there were empty seats near us, luckily), and we soon decided to go back downstairs — she suddenly had to use the restroom. Once downstairs, she handed me her beer and headed for the women’s room, but the line was already out the door. She paced and mumbled, and after a few minutes ducked into the men’s room. Yes, the men’s room. Uh, OK.
         Moments later, two guys walked out. One said to the other, “Now THERE’S something you don’t see every day.” A few minutes after that, Renee emerged, smiling. I didn’t want to know what happened in there, so I didn’t ask. We got two more beers. This was perhaps not the best move, when I think about it in retrospect.
         When we walked back up toward our seats, she spotted the security guard and immediately walked up to him and said, “We just reported your ass to the management. If you mess with us again, your ass is going to be fired.” The man, startled, looked very close to giving us both the boot, but once again I intervened. I apologized to him and pulled Renee back toward our seats. My head spun; I wondered what in the hell I had gotten myself into.
         Back to our seats we went, but we’d been sitting no more than two or three minutes when Renee announced she had to use the bathroom again. She said, “You don’t have to go — I’ll be right back.” I said OK. There were about six and a half minutes left in the first half, as I recall. I didn’t see Renee again. Halftime over, I went down to look for her. Nothing. I checked the restrooms. Nothing. I circled the arena. Nothing. I went to the security station to see if perhaps they had thrown out or arrested a beautiful, chestnut-haired girl in a red sweater with a filthy mouth. Still nothing. I called a friend and said, “Do you want to hear a story that could only happen to me?” I drove home alone.
          I awoke at about 4 in the morning to the ringing of my cell phone. It was Renee. “I am so sorry,” she said, then claimed she’d had too much beer and forgotten where the seats were. She said she ran into a girl she formerly worked with and got a ride home. She also said she wanted to make it up to me. “Can I take you out to dinner this week?” she said. Luckily, I had plans.

It was the Roadhouse Tea talking
By Rebecca Dentinger
         Several months after the end of a five-year relationship, I decided it was time to start dating again. I was having trouble meeting people, so a friend at work decided to play cupid. A guy had moved into her apartment complex from Atlanta who was “very cute.” One day, she decided to approach him, and long story short, we were soon after talking on the phone. He asked me out on a date, and not being from this area, wanted some suggestions on where we should go to eat. I made several suggestions like Ramsi’s, Baxter Station, Come Back Inn — unique to Louisville, casual and not too expensive. When he picked me up he informed me that we would be going to Logan’s Roadhouse. Upon arrival, he asked for a table in the bar so he could watch the NBA game. He then ordered the “Roadhouse Tea,” which is the 22-ounce Long Island Iced Tea. It was all down hill from there.
          He spent most of the dinner ignoring me and watching the game. When he did talk, I knew we didn’t have anything in common. He informed me he ate the same thing every day. Cereal for breakfast, ham sandwich and chips for lunch, and steak for dinner. OK, so not great, but I had to stick around to see how this ended. We left there and drove to O’Shea’s. On the way there he said that his previous girlfriend had accused him of getting her pregnant and now had a kid, but it wasn’t his. He asked me about my previous relationships and I told him I had been with my last boyfriend for five years. He proceeded to tell me that I must have a major personality flaw if we dated that long and he did not ask me to marry him. He then asked how old I was (30), and if I had ever been engaged. When I said no, he said, “There must really be something wrong with you. At this point you are probably desperate to marry the first person you go out with. You are probably harboring all sorts of anger. You know you would go back to your boyfriend if he asked you back. Don’t act like you wouldn’t. Can you hear your biological clock ticking? Because you don’t have long. You better hurry up and find someone.” At this point I should have just left, but I was in shock. I asked him to take me home and I never heard from him again. THANK GOD!

Just say no to the sympathy date
BY Lori Turner
         I was a student teacher in my early 30s, rarely seeing or talking to an adult male in UofL’s Elementary Teacher program, and being a single mom, I didn’t have much of a dating life. My mentor teacher knew I didn’t have a social life, so she suggested that I go out for New Year’s with the school janitor, who was always nice and trying to make small talk with me, but was quite a few years older than myself. It “just so happened” that he comes into the room during the discussion and Mrs. Anderson basically arranges the New Year’s date between us. I’m like, “OK, what the hell! How bad could it be?” BIG mistake!
         So we exchanged phone numbers and he called me to brainstorm some ideas. We agreed to go to Jillian’s, which had a package deal that included some drinks, dinner and a breakfast, plus live swing music, because I was thinking the fact that he is “mature” probably meant that he knows how to partner dance. I gave him directions to pick me up for the date.
          I decided that he should pick me up at my father’s house so that 1) my family can meet him and if anything happens they can describe him to the police, and 2) so he doesn’t know exactly where I live, which is just a normal precaution in case he’s not “normal.”
         So off went in his huge, boat-shaped hunk of junk Caddy (I think) to Jillian’s. It was bitter cold and rumored to have freezing rain later that night, and he never did turn on the heat in the car, so I froze the whole way. Since we didn’t have anything in common, we focused our conversation on the cold weather. When we left it was still daylight, so I gave him directions that he easily followed to Jillian’s because he wasn’t familiar at all with the East End or the location of the restaurant.
         Once there, he immediately ordered Heinekens; he had a “fresh” beer in his hand every time I turned around, which alarmed me, and I spoke to him about it. He quickly dismissed my concerns about his drinking, and we just kind of walked around, trying to make small talk in which I find out that he has three sons, which are all around my age. This freaked me out a bit because I knew how old this guy was now! I tried to distract myself from this feeling of dread that came over me by asking if he partner dances, and he informed me that he doesn’t dance at all! I thought to myself, “Great, the only black man in the world that doesn’t dance is my New Year’s Eve date!”
         As the boring night continued with appetizers and dinner, I watched my geriatric date continue to down his favorite beer in the little green bottle and watched for signs of intoxication, but there didn’t seem to be any signs that he was drunk at all. As the clock got closer to midnight, he started giving me “looks” and got a little “touchy feely.” I started to worry about “The Kiss.” I mean, SURELY he didn’t expect to kiss me on the lips, right? I spent the rest of the time trying to think up creative ways of “blocking” that will allow me to avoid my lips from ever touching his, but all I came up with was to make sure that I turned my head so that the smooch landed on my cheek. I then began to silently pray that he wasn’t a “wet kisser.” Eek!
         The clock struck 12 and it turned out that God did answer my prayer, he just said NO! This guy gave me a big, wet “Labrador lick” of a kiss on my sacrificial right cheek, but better my cheek than my lips! (I just threw up a little in my mouth thinking about it.) OK, so we had breakfast, and his beverage of choice was STILL beer, but I watched him eat, and just like dinner he was eating a lot of food. My guess was that he was trying to get all the “bang for his buck” that he could because I sure wasn’t going to “bang” him!
         Anyway, we agreed it was time to leave, and we got our coats and went out to his car. The passenger’s side door was frozen shut, so I had to avoid pressing up against him because he was not getting out of the way to let me in. I squeezed into his driver’s side and slid over into the front passenger seat. I asked him one last time if he’s OK to drive, and of course he said yes and started the car. He followed my directions toward home, and as we got to Grinstead and Lexington Road, just past Jim Porter’s, I warned him that we are going straight and to not attempt to turn left like those drivers who are on our left side. He said OK, and then when the light turned green he started turning left! I yelled that he is supposed to go straight, at which by the time he straightened the wheel we were on the WRONG side of the road facing on coming traffic! I screamed, “You’re on the wrong side of the road!” And he calmly drove over the concrete median and back onto the right side of the road with the comment, “You need to settle down, gal!” hanging in the air in his frozen tank of a car.
         Again I began to pray, but this time that I would make it home alive. Meanwhile, he was irritated with me and told me how I was overreacting to his little mistake. We got to the stoplight at Shelbyville Road and Lexington when I looked over at him and noticed that he was drinking a Heineken that he must have taken from the restaurant, and that two police cars had just passed us! I prayed that I won’t die and that I won’t go to jail, either! I really started to yell at him for literally drinking and driving, and he told me to calm down because I was confusing him. At the next stoplight I tried to open my car door, but it was not budging. I wanted to get out of the car so badly that I decided to give him directions to my real home in St. Matthews because we were very close to it.
         He pulled in the driveway and said that he didn’t know why I was so upset, because he’s not drunk or anything. I just wanted to get out of the car, so I didn’t argue. He got out and walked me to my door. I got into my house, and as I locked the door I heard a knock. It was him saying that he thinks I’m right, he’s had too much to drink and he wants to come in and spend the night. I told him that it’s not going to happen, but that I’d call a cab for him and he could wait in his car until it comes. He got into his car and left. He later called my cell phone and left a message that I was the most selfish, uncaring person he had ever met and that he made it home safe. And, oh yeah, would I like to go out again sometime? True story.

How I met my ex
BY Maria Evans
            It was the fall of 1980, and I was 20 years old. I had just started college at a new school. Several young men had asked me on dates, and I was playing the field. There was a concert in town on Saturday night and “Greg” asked me to go with him. I had also been spending some time with Sam, as well as a couple of others.
            Greg comes to the dorm to pick me up. We are using my car, as Greg does not have a car with him at school. As we are walking away from the dorm door, Sam appears and states he is here to pick me up for the concert. I replied that he had not invited me to the concert with him and that I was going with Greg. Sam proceeded to cause what was an uproariously funny scene, proclaiming I needed to go to the concert with a “real man.” A crowd formed as we bantered back and forth, and when I finally left with Greg, the crowd cheered and applauded.
            I arrived at the concert with Greg, but the night deteriorated. Sam showed up alone. He and Greg were at odds. I was frustrated and ended up sitting with girlfriends and returning to the dorm with them. Greg used my car to go eat afterwards with “guys.” He ended up having a flat tire in my car and had to call for help from someone back at the dorm. Sam showed up to help him with the car. Eventually I got my car back. Greg bought me a new tire. We all turned out to be good friends, and I ended up marrying Sam one year later. We have since divorced; Sam was always showing up at females’ doors to take them places … even when we were married.

Beware of the LIT lolita
by Travis Wagoner
This story is not embellished or fabricated. All events that took place are true. The names have been changed to protect the identities of those parties involved. Note: Three close friends of mine saw the ad in the LEO and demanded that I submit this story.
In June 2002, not happy with the women I was meeting (and the women not happy meeting me), I decided to give Match.com a try. Overall, it was a good experience. I met some great people through Match, some of whom I’m still friends with. However, nothing really “clicked” romantically. But “Angela” was different.
I noticed that right away from the picture of herself she e-mailed to me, she was beautiful — blonde, blue eyes, dazzling smile. She had the rare ability to be hot and cute at the same time. Her voice carried the distinct accent of the mountain South. She spoke in a breathy way, cool and slow as an Appalachian stream. She laughed easily, but behind it there was also the sad realization that sometimes life can be hard.
We e-mailed back and forth for a few days before talking on the phone. It was time to meet in person, and I couldn’t wait. In our phone conversations, Angela said that she was originally from a small town in eastern Kentucky and that she had recently moved to Louisville to go to medical school. In addition to being beautiful, Angela had a brain. She had double-majored in biology and art history in college. Now, I’m an ass man, but an intelligent woman is a thing to be cherished.
We agreed to meet for dinner at a now-defunct restaurant on Frankfort Avenue. Even if I had never seen her picture, I would have noticed this girl when she walked into the restaurant. She lived up to her picture perfectly, rare in the world of online dating.
She was stunning — 5’4”, beautiful shoulder-length hair, dressed perfectly in a sun dress. She made her way across the restaurant to our table, and I noticed Angela had curves. Good ones in the right places — not that rail-thin look that makes me nervous about breaking a rib when I give a girl a hug. A little something to hold onto.
Dinner went wonderfully. We were both relaxed, happy and ready for a fun evening. It was one of those rare occasions when both people are honestly enjoying each other’s company after the initial nervousness wore off. We laughed, told stories about ourselves and forgot that anyone else was even in the restaurant. It was like catching up with an old friend. It felt right and comfortable — like there was potential.
In addition to learning more of how beautiful and bright she was, I saw that beneath it all was a kind sweetness. It wasn’t annoying over-enthusiasm or innocent dimwittedness. Angela was simply nice — no ego, no pretense, no bitchiness. Somehow we made dinner last two hours. After paying the check, I asked Angela if she’d like to go for a drink or a cup of coffee. She looked genuinely thrilled that I had asked.
Angela opted for a drink, so I suggested a little neighborhood bar just down the street from the restaurant. We walked in the direction of the bar and listened to a summer evening breeze around us on Frankfort Avenue.
After arriving at the bar, we sat at a table near the window so we could look out on the street. “What would you like to drink?” I asked Angela. “A Long Island iced tea,” she replied without hesitating. Alright, this girl likes to throw a few back, I thought as I walked to the bar to order. Things just kept getting better.
Thirty minutes and one LIT later: We were nearing the end of our LITs. “Do you want to call it a night?” I asked Angela. “No, let’s have another,” she said. And we’re off, I thought. One hour and two LITs later: Our great conversation continued. Although now sufficiently lubed with LITs, it came easier and we laughed more. We were having a blast. Nobody within 10 feet of us would have guessed that this was our first date. Then I felt a hand on my knee, and I smiled.
“I’m really having a good time,” Angela said, smiling sweetly at me. “I’m really glad we decided to go out after dinner.” She moved her hand slightly up my thigh — nothing too forward or slutty, but enough for me to know that she was genuinely happy to be having a drink with me.
One and a half hours and three LITs later: Angela was still going strong when I returned to the table with our latest round of LITs. Just as I sat down, Angela leaned over and kissed me lightly. Thrilled with this turn of events, I pulled her closer and returned the favor. Neither of us wanted the sloppy bar makeout session, so we kept it discreet. But, could she kiss.
We continued talking, laughing and drinking, and she handled the latter well. She certainly wasn’t driving that night, but she wasn’t an emotional, crying or annoying drunken mess. Two hours and four LITs later: “Would you excuse me while I go to the restroom?” Angela asked me. “Not at all,” I replied, standing up as she moved away from the table. She stumbled just a bit and giggled, but she didn’t lurch and stagger away. She was noticeably buzzed but not drunk and stumblebum.
I sat back down, my back to the bar, took a sip of my drink and recounted my good fortune. Yes, this was the best date I’d ever had. Dinner was a ringing success, and my suggestion to go out after our meal had been met with enthusiasm. Furthermore, Angela enjoyed throwing one back. Better yet, she enjoyed being herself and being out with me. Yes, it had been an outstanding evening. My good humor slowly began to subside as the minutes ticked by. I became worried that perhaps Angela had gotten sick in the bathroom given all she’d had to drink. I looked at my watch. Fifteen minutes and no Angela. Curious as to the score of the Celtics’ playoff game, I turned around in my seat to check out the TV above the bar. That’s when I saw her.
After four LITs, it took a second or two longer than usual for my brain to process this information. Even then, it didn’t offer many good solutions.
There was Angela, standing at the bar, making out with some guy like she was going down with the ship. She was all over him. I stood up and walked the 50 or so feet to the bar. I stood behind bar, tapped her on the shoulder as she was in mid-kiss. She turned around, and had the nerve to look surprised. The guy disappeared, like a drain had opened up right beneath him and down he went.
“Oh my, God!” Angela exclaimed. “Oh my God! Wait. I’m so sorry.” “Thank you very much for ruining what had been a great evening,” I said to her. I then turned to the bartender, Gus, and said, “Gus, could you please call this lady a cab? She’s had too much to drive.”
With that I pulled up a stool at the bar and ordered a beer. Might as well watch the end of the game. “I’m so sorry,” Angela said as she sidled up next to me. “Please forgive me. I can’t control myself when I drink. I don’t know why, I just can’t.” “I’d prefer not to talk with you,” I replied, holding my temper and keeping it cool. “Gus, could you please ask her to sit somewhere else? I’ve asked her not to talk to me.” “Come along,” Gus said gently to Angela. “You heard him. Your cab will be here in a few minutes.” Gus took her by the arm and led her to a table at the other side of the bar. A few minutes later, her cab arrived and she was gone, and with it my last good bad date. Nothing else compares.
About three weeks later, after having told this story to several friends who enjoyed it more than they should have, I returned to this neighborhood tavern one evening with a buddy. Not long after arriving, a guy whom I’d never met walked up to me and said, “Excuse me, but were you up here a few weeks ago with a cute blonde? You sat right over at that table,” he said, gesturing in the direction of where Angela and I had sat that evening.
“Yeah, I was. Why?” I asked.
“Man, I’m really sorry,” he said. “Let me buy you a beer.”
“Wait a minute,” I said. “Let me guess: You were up here that night, minding your own business and having a few beers when this hot blonde comes walking up to you out of nowhere and starts kissing you?”
“Yeah! Exactly!” he said. “I’m so sorry.”
“Don’t be,” I said. “I figured that’s what had happened. I mean, you’re sitting here having a good time and a hot woman just walks up and starts kissing you. Hell, I’d kiss her to. You didn’t know she was with someone. And you’ve never seen her before?”
“Never,” he said. “Thanks for being so cool about this.”
“Like I said, you didn’t know,” I said. “I would have done the same thing.”
About three years later, I was having an after-work beer at a different bar with a few buddies, when in walks Gus, the bartender who witnessed that night’s sad events. “Gus!” I hollered, motioning for him to join us. “I haven’t seen you in forever. I was just telling these guys the story about the date I had who started making out with the other guy when she got back from the restroom.”
“That was hilarious,” Gus said. “But she never made it to the restroom.”      “What do you mean,” I asked. “She was gone for 15 minutes before I noticed her with that guy.”
“Well, I went to get a mop to clean up a broken beer bottle and I went to the broom closet,” he said. “You know that closet just before you get to the restrooms.”
“I think,” I said.
“I opened the door, and there she was — squatting down over a bucket in the middle of the closet, her skirt all hiked up.”
My buddies nearly fell out of their chairs from laughter. “She was taking a piss in the closet?!” I exclaimed.
“Yep,” Gus said, laughing. “I asked what she was doing and she said she thought it was the restroom. Then she stood up. She was a lot more drunk than she looked.”
“I reckon so,” I said. The laughter continued, and does to this day.