Scott

After my last date had ended up with a guy naked on my bed with absolutely no encouragement on my end, I was more than ready for a fellow that was a just a tad less eager to accelerate the dating process. My next date, Scott, though, could barely summon up the motivation to lift his hand up to shake mine when we met. I would say that he maybe smiled twice during our conversation but that would probably be overstating things. How exciting! A guy that had chosen to have a drink with me instead of jumping off the top of a building! Fantastic.

In our first couple of emails, I did not become aware of Scott’s wish for his own early demise. He was actually extremely smart and witty and he had me laughing out loud several times.  Scott was different than the average Match.com guy and I was getting excited. There was someone out in the dating universe that could hold a decent conversation, seemed very cute and used words that I had to look up in the dictionary? It was looking promising…

It was June and it turned out that Scott had just moved to Seattle from San Diego in March for a job. On our third email, he asked, “Is it always so cloudy and rainy here? Do you have sun in this city? Ever? I mean, really. If it is like this for much longer I am going to kill myself.” Uh, oh. I asked if he had been on an exploratory trip to Seattle before he moved and, if so, what had the weather been like? Even though I asked the question, I already knew the answer. “Yes, I did come for a weekend but it was back in July. It was beautiful. When does it get like that again?” I had to break the news to Scott that Seattle had about five nice weekends a year, and well, trying to be optimistic, those were just around the corner! It wasn’t long! The sun would come out in…late July!

I didn’t hear from Scott after that email for three days. I thought maybe the Seasonal Affective Disorder had gotten him but I finally got an email. He wanted to meet for a drink but he needed to wait for a week or so because he needed to buy a car. Apparently he had broken down and, even though he was dying inside, he realized he couldn’t have a motorcycle in Seattle. It killed him but he just had to face the truth. Hmmm…maybe the SAD was still lurking around after all but we did agree to meet for a drink the following week. I wasn’t confident that Scott wouldn’t drive his car off a bridge on the way to meet me but, again, I was trying to be optimistic.

I walked into the bar and there was a white blob of a guy in the back corner that perhaps, if I squinted, looked like the photos I had seen of Scott. The blob saw me and made an attempt at standing up and half-heartedly waving at me. Seriously???? Nothing like his pictures, he looked nothing like his pictures, but I couldn’t turn around and walk out even though it was very, very, very tempting.

“Hey, Kate, nice to meet you. Did you find somewhere close to park or did you get f*cking soaked on your way in here? Because I am f*cking soaked.” This was the first sentence that the ball-of-joy that was my date uttered to me. Charming, really, charming. I am no fan of the weather in Seattle, don’t get me wrong, but his opening salvo just seemed like the wrong way to start a date. Shouldn’t some note of positivity be maintained? Really?

It didn’t get better from there. Hating the weather in Seattle was only item #1 on the reasons why Scott wanted to end it all. The rain sucked, his job was a waste of his time, his hometown team the Celtics made him feel like a ‘Masshole’, he missed San Diego something fierce and he had hurt has back. Scott had gained 50 pounds and, even though he used to be a ‘bodybuilder’ (he had pictures!), he could now barely get off the couch. “I don’t know why I get out of bed, I mean, really, why bother?”

My feelings of empathy and sympathy were quickly outweighed by my overwhelming irritation at this guy for even dragging me out on a date. Ok, fine, I understood that sometimes there is a perfect storm of awfulness in one’s life but it was really not fair to load all of that on me, within the first 15 minutes!, and not pay me an hourly rate to be his psychiatrist. I was only one girl. We finished our drinks and I made up some reason on the fly that I just couldn’t stick around for another round. Scott told me that I was really ‘harshing his buzz’ but, really, at that point, I didn’t think that there was much that didn’t. I paid for my drink and made for the exit. I moved toward Scott to at least give him a hug goodbye but he didn’t even get out of his chair.

I got an email from Scott two days later asking me to go to a movie and dinner. “I was going to ask you to go on a ride on the ferry but, well, I think the rain and clouds might make me jump off of the side of the boat.” As tempting as that offer sounded, I couldn’t take another downer of a date with Scott. I wrote him back that, I was sorry, but I just didn’t feel a connection. I never heard from him again after that. I am hoping that he made it out of Seattle and didn’t stick around to keep going on therapy dates. A guy should pay an hourly rate for that, I mean, really.

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Published in: Uncategorized on March 23, 2011 at 3:43 am  Comments (10)  

Chuck

After the soul-crushing disaster that was Marcus, my psyche needed a month or so to repair itself. When I decided that my skin was thick enough to again dip my feet into the online dating pool, I went out of my way to make sure that my first candidate was going to be nice and safe with only a slight chance of being a total jerk. Chuck, a single dad that was a little older than me and from the Midwest, seemed like the type of guy who wouldn’t do mean things like surprise me with emails itemizing everything that was wrong with me. Chuck did end up giving me what is perhaps the biggest surprise in my online dating career but he was really, really nice about it.

The first email that I got from Chuck was very funny, harmless and kind. He worked in a management position for the largest technology company in Seattle and lived in one of the outlying suburbs. He had a 9 year-old son from a previous marriage that had ended over five years ago. He was tall, fairly cute and could put together complete and pretty entertaining emails. And he seemed really nice. I didn’t sense one bit of sarcasm or mean-spiritedness, which, after the caustic Marcus, seemed like a pleasant change of pace. Safe, I was going to be safe, so I agreed to a meeting at a local wine bar with Chuck for the following week.

Chuck was waiting at the bar when I arrived and my first impression was that he was really, really not my idea of handsome. He was…pleasant looking but just pretty much the opposite of what I normally found attractive. My judgment had proved to be lacking, though, recently so I sat down and decided to give Chuck a fair shake.

He was pleasant, really pleasant and kind of really, really boring. The conversation struggled pretty badly at first but, if there is one thing that internet dating has given me, it is the skill to be able to talk to people that bear striking resemblances to rocks. Chuck did open up and, as he let loose and started to joke around, I found myself liking him more. It could have had something to do with the wine we were consuming but, when Chuck asked if he could pick me up that weekend and take me to dinner, I didn’t find myself thinking it was such a horrible idea. I can’t say that he was wowing me exactly but I didn’t think seeing him again would be torture, either. With that ringing endorsement, the date was set.

Chuck looked pretty nice when he arrived at the front door of my condo but, in a once again sober state, I was now really quite confident that I did not find him attractive, not even the littlest bit. Crap, crap, crap. Was it too late to change our dinner plans? Yes, it was. I vowed I could make it through an Italian dinner with a nice guy even if it killed me. We had a pleasant dinner and the conversation was fine but it was like we were just friends or acquaintances – there seemed to be absolutely no spark between us and I kind of got the feeling that Chuck felt the exact same way. That is why I was surprised and shocked when, as he drove me home, he asked if he could come in my place for one more glass of wine. He had an extra bottle in his back seat and everything.

It says something about Chuck that I was absolutely not at all threatened or nervous about letting him into my condo. My fear was not that he was going to chop me into pieces but rather that he was going to try a romantic play which was absolutely not something I was interested in. I was truthfully kind of surprised that he was even interested in making a move. He seemed about as excited about me as I was about him. But what was I supposed to say? He had just bought me dinner, he was as scary as toast and one more glass of wine would be fine before I sent him on his way, this time for good.

We got into my condo and I pulled out some glasses and found the wine opener for Chuck. He started to open the bottle and I excused myself to use the restroom. When I returned, I headed into the kitchen and Chuck was gone. My place was tiny so, if he wasn’t there and he hadn’t just up and darted out of the condo altogether, the only other place he could be was in the bedroom. Oh, no. Oh, NO! I went into the bedroom and, yep, I had found him. Chuck was posed on my bed, completely buck naked, and holding his glass of Cabernet. “You told me to make myself comfortable, Kate, and well, I did.” It looked like I really was going to need another glass of wine.

I was so shocked that I had a hard time not showing it on my face and Chuck quickly realized the error of his ways. Even though this guy was quite possibly breaking all kinds of rules of dating etiquette – we had not even kissed! – I felt really, really bad for him. He had put himself out there, so to speak, and that took a lot of courage. But, sympathy aside, sharing a glass of wine with someone you are not interested in is one thing but it is *quite* another if they don’t have any clothes on, even if they are incredibly nice. It was time to put an end to this evening. I am a kind and polite girl but I am not that kind and polite.

Chuck recovered quite well, actually, and, after he put back on all of his clothes, we finished our glasses of wine, in the *kitchen*. I can’t say it was the most comfortable of times but it wasn’t awful, either. Chuck did have some skills and personality after all. He corked up his bottle, I walked him out to his car, he gave me an awkward hug and off he went. As he drove away I couldn’t help but laugh. Half an hour ago that guy had been naked on my BED! What the hell? How did this stuff happen to me? Even though things had ended a bit, uh, abruptly, Chuck had surprisingly restored my faith in online dating. Guys sending me rude and awful emails or lounging in their birthday suit in my condo? No problem. I could handle that. This was as bad as it could get, right? This had to be the bottom of the dating barrel, right? Right???

Published in: Uncategorized on March 11, 2011 at 3:43 am  Comments (16)