The Wonders of Online Dating, Part Deux – The Dates
We decided to meet at Ruby Tuesdays since it was halfway for each of us. He was already there when I arrived, had procured a booth by the window and I spotted him right away as he looked much like his photo. He bore an uncanny resemblance to Owen Wilson in “Zoolander,” an aging surfer type with some latent hippie mixed in. Somewhat quirky, he spent the first 15 minutes of our date talking about his Smartwatch then moved on to regale me with the finer points of the musical he was writing about squirrels, aptly named “Squirrels! – The Musical,” acting out the scenes with the salt and pepper shakers. He told me that he owned his own business which sounded impressive, at first. He cleaned out dryer vents. Yes, it’s just what it sounds like. For a fee, he would come to your house, go to the laundry room and clean out your dryer vent. As you can imagine, business was not so good, therefore he lived with his mother. He was 45. When we left, he couldn’t seem to remember where he’d parked his car. I told him I really needed to get going, pulled out of the drive and headed towards the interstate all the while observing him in my rear view, still wandering around in the parking lot at Ruby Tuesdays.
Moving on to door number two…His name was Ed and we agreed to meet at a local restaurant. As the hostess ushered me in, I prayed that my date was not that guy dressed all in black who looked like a dust farting legend from the Grand Old Opry sitting in the booth against the back wall. My prayer went unanswered as Johnny Cash stood up to greet me. I was temporarily blinded by the light being reflected off the behemoth belt buckle attached to his pants. It was as big as a dinner plate. I don’t know how he could even sit down without it cutting into his thighs, which were, incidentally clad in the tightest pair of Wrangler’s I have ever seen on a human. I had initially thought his stiff gait was due to his cowboy boots, but later realized it was because he couldn’t bend his knees. His shirt was starched to the point where it could have stood up by itself. He removed his cowboy hat to say hello which revealed a full head of hair, obviously freshly dyed, jet black, Elvis style.
He really was a nice man. Not very interesting, but really nice. There was just no spark on my part what-so-ever. He was every bit the gentleman and insisted on paying. I felt so shallow, but I just could not get over the get up. He looked like a cartoon character and we had absolutely nothing in common. I received an e-mail from Mr. Cash later that evening telling me that I was lovely, but he could tell I was not all that smitten with him. He thanked me for an enjoyable evening and wished me luck in my search. It broke my heart a little. I hope he found love because he deserves it.
Then there was Bob. Bob lived in an abandoned missile silo somewhere out in Kansas, but he wouldn’t tell me where exactly because he couldn’t take the chance that the government might be listening. He was convinced that they were controlling all of our minds with electromagnetic waves. Apparently there is a whole community of people who have bought abandoned missile silos from the federal government and live in them preparing for Armageddon. I still refer to him as one of the potato people.
Dave was a very laid back kind of guy whom I suspected might be high. My suspicions were confirmed when he happened to mention halfway through lunch at Perkins that he had just recently been released from prison where he’d spent 18 months for selling pot. We were just finishing up our Reuben sandwiches when he got a call informing him that his pot dealer had been arrested. He handed me a ten-dollar bill and asked if I could get the check because he had to go. I never heard from him again. I have serious doubts as to whether he even remembered being there at all.
I met a guy who wore a fedora during our entire meal…at Red Lobster. I met a man who was 47 and had quit his job to go “find himself.” I didn’t have any advice on where to look. I met a man at a ‘Plenty of Fish’ mixer who for some reason faked an English accent while bedecked in a black leather corset and…eyeliner.
However, my date with Kevin was what convinced me to give up online dating altogether. He wore a suede jacket (collar popped) that he refused to take off, worked as a mechanic and chewed constantly on a toothpick. He talked with food in his mouth and told me he could use some “BJ action.” Suppressing my impending regurgitation, I excused myself to the Ladies room where I stood quietly with my forehead pressed against the back of the stall door concocting my escape plan. This is the one and only time I’ve ever used the, “I have to go to the bathroom” trick to cut and run on someone, but I did and he deserved it.
It was enough to put an end to my dating journey. I didn’t give up on the idea of love completely, but I definitely pulled over to the side of that road for a long nap. You never know, maybe ‘the one’ will sneak up on me and I won’t see him coming soon enough to jump out of the way.