Tuesday, June 29, 2010

My Very First Date (Continued...)

This is a continuation of a previous post.  Please read Disaster Date #6: My Very First Date; The Dating Disasters Commence first.

Several weeks later I came home from school and found Kyle's hot little red car parked in my driveway. He had stopped by to ask me to be his date to the Homecoming dance. I accepted his invitation, shocked that I had not completly sabotaged myself on our first date as I had thought. The plan was to go out to dinner before the dance with a group of my friends and their dates. We thought it would be hilarious to get all gussied up and go to eat at Wendy's in our gowns and suits. However, the evening of Homecoming threw a curveball when several of my friends decided at the last minute that they'd rather eat somewhere nicer than Wendy's. I felt badly about changing plans on Kyle at the last minute, but alas, we had been outvoted.

My first inclination that things might not be going well came when Kyle's dad showed up at the restaurant to bring him more money. Since we had intended to eat at Wendy's, he hadn't bothered to put more than $20 in his wallet, and why should he have? It really wasn't a big deal, but I could sense his embarrassment and wished we could both crawl under the table to hide. The rest of the meal, however, went on without a hitch and I'm fairly certain we all had a good time. I don't remember specifics from the dance itself, but I know it was so nice to have someone to join me for every dance and a gentleman's arm to hold onto for the night.

Kyle invited me over after the dance to watch movies with him and another couple, but again, my anxiety won over and I declined in favor of a sleepover with a group of my girlfriends. That served as Kyle's cue to give up, and I certainly don't blame him. I had provided him with every signal that I was absolutely not interested and though I was interested, I was scared to death. I wanted the excitement of first love, but having experienced nothing remotely close to it in the past, the idea of it was completely overwhelming. For most people, perhaps it is an innate sense that tells them what to do and say in the presence of someone they are intersted in, but I did not have that instinct. I fear I might still lack it. And so, while I believe Kyle would have been a wonderful, fun, sweet, attentive high school boyfriend, I missed my chance. I have only myself to blame.

That was years ago and of course I am over it, but that doesn't mean I don't still have regrets. I later learned that on the night of Homecoming, the trunk of his hot little red car held a fancy tablecloth, silverware and candlesticks. Kyle intended to set a romantic table for me at Wendy's! That is one of he sweetest things I have ever heard, let alone experienced. I still cringe when I think about his disappointment when his plans were thwarted and he was unable to follow through with his romantic scheme. I also very much regret that I was not able to experience that sweet gesture.

As this site only proves, my romantic encounters have very much gone downhill throughout the past ten years. Perhaps I cursed myself. I didn't appreciate the charming man I had at 16; am I now doomed to experience the worst men in the universe for the rest of my life? Probably not. But I haven't yet been convinced otherwise.

Monday, June 28, 2010

My Very First Date; The Dating Disasters Commence

Every girl has a special fondness in her heart for the first boy she dated.  For me, that lucky bastard was Kyle.  Though we went to the same high school, Kyle was a year ahead of me and we never had any classes together.  Therefore, we did not become properly acquainted until summer camp.  Yes, I am among the millions who found love (or at least flirtation galore) at summer camp.  I spent the week swooning over Kyle and his neon green electric guitar.  I giggled when he tried to teach me to play some chords.  My heart went pitter-pat when he sat down next to me at the dinner table and during games of keep-away in the pool. 

So after that week of camp I did what any self-respecting 16 year-old girl both obsessed with and terrified by the opposite sex would do: I emailed Kyle.  Luckily, there was an inside-joke from camp about asking someone out via email, providing me with the perfect opportunity to appear adorably ironic.  The email in question looked something like this:

Hi Kyle,
I had a lot of fun getting to know you at camp.  Would you like to go on a date with me?

Check: [yes]   [no]      or          [never email me again]

Corny as hell?  You betcha!  But I knew my audience and held fast to the possibility that it just might work.  A few hours later my Juno account was hit with a reply from Kyle:

Check: [ X ]    [no]     or           [never email me again]

Score one for little ole me!  My first attempt at asking out a boy since the 5th grade was met with success!  The next day Kyle called to plan our date.  A date!  A real date!  I thought that was something only DJ Tanner had the luxury to experience.  In keeping with the feeling that I was suddenly living a sitcom, my 7 year-old brother found it necessary to pick up the phone receiver in a different room of the house and chant “She loves you, Kyle!  She loves you, Kyle!”  Kyle, being the gentleman that I am sure he still is, took my pesky little brother’s teasing rather well, laughing it off and agreeing to pick me up on Friday.  And ladies and gentlemen, let me assure you that Kyle had a hot little red car.  I was beyond ecstatic.  And scared to death. 

The plan was for Kyle to pick me up and we would then decide where to go for dinner before hitting the movies.  Assuming he would ask me where I'd like to eat, I made sure to have several options in mind for him to choose from.  My older sister even gave me the list of what one should and should not eat on a date (to account for as little as possible chance of embarrassing spills, food stuck in teeth or bad breath).  One of the number one no-nos was pizza, for while it may seem simple enough, pizza can quickly become disasterous! Tomato sauce stains, oregano in your teeth, garlic breath... But alas, Kyle was hungry for pizza, so pizza it was.  I am happy to say that I believe I performed well and escaped unscathed by food-induced embarrassment.

There was, however, an awkward moment at dinner when Kyle remarked that he had not been on a date in a while.  Seeing this as my opportunity to provide an excuse for my nerves, I replied by saying, "Don't worry about it!  This is my first date ever!"  And while Kyle seemed flattered that he was the subject of my very first date, that comment set the tone for what was to come: As a newbie to the world of dating, I just didn't know how I was supposed to act.

Pizza was followed by a venture to The Perfect Storm.  I harbored a secret wish that Kyle would put his arm around me or hold my hand, but was equally relieved when he failed to do so.  He then drove me home and walked me to the door, at which point I invited him inside.  After all, that's exactly what DJ Tanner would have done.  We chatted with my parents in the living room for a while before moving into the family room to watch tv.  Just Kyle and me.  The two of us.  ALONE.  In my house the family room was cut off from the rest of the house, so we had total privacy.  Given this fact, I did not want to appear as though I was throwing myself at Kyle or coming on too strong.  So while he made himself comfortable on the sofa, I chose a seat on the other side of the room.

I'm an idiot, I know.

We watched an episode of Alf I had on VHS (because I am just that awesome) and then Kyle prepared to leave.  I walked him to the front door, thanked him for a lovely evening, he told me I looked pretty and then he left and I closed the door behind him.  My parents were watching from the living room: "Why didn't you walk him to his car?" and "Maybe you can still catch him!  He won't kiss you with us sitting here!  Go!"  But I didn't.  I had made my umpteenth mistake of the evening and chasing Kyle out to his hot little red car would only make things worse.  In trying to appear interested while maintaining my distance, I had ruined the perfect opportunity for a first kiss or second date.

Or so I thought.

Several weeks later I came home from school and found Kyle's hot little red car parked in my driveway.  

(To Be Continued... I'm afraid you won't finish reading if this post gets any longer.  Tune in next time for another installment of "My Very First Date")

Monday, June 14, 2010

The Diesel Date

Through my various encounters I’ve formed the unfortunate opinion that short men feel the need to compensate.  I really wish my experience proved otherwise, and I am quite sure there are plenty of truly wonderful short men out there, but so far that is not what I have observed.  Tyler was no exception.

Tyler took me on a date to Diesel.  Yes, Diesel.  As in the clothing retailer.  I waited for an hour while he tried on various pairs of jeans (ranging $400-$700) and grossly overpriced t-shirts.  As with previous dating disasters, I said nothing because I did not know what to say (although “I’m getting the hell out of here” would have been a good place to start).  Tyler felt the need to show off that yes, he had money.  This could be because men think that women are impressed by money, which is sometimes true, but I think it had more to do with the fact that Tyler is 5’5” and incredibly conceited.

After the Diesel debacle, I tried to weasel my way out of Tyler’s clutches.  Unfortunately, due to prior poor judgment on my part, I had already told Tyler that I was free all day, so he would hear nothing of my excuses.  He suggested we get pizza and gelato to take back to his apartment to hang out and I begrudgingly complied, promising myself to escape as soon as I had finished eating (it would also buy me time to come up with a better excuse).

Back at Tyler’s apartment we ate our food (which was the only good part of the date) and I attempted to make my great escape.  I was thwarted by Tyler pushing me up against the wall and kissing me, while looking at me with the creepiest expression I’ve ever seen and I am positive he thought was incredibly sexy.  He was slobbery and disgusting and it was the absolute worst kiss I’ve ever experienced.  I may be insecure in many ways, but I know that I am a good kisser.  I have been told so on quite a number of occasions.  Tyler, however, did not think so.  In fact, he told me that I was the one who was a horrible kisser and tried to coach me on how to better satisfy his salivatory needs.

But oh, it gets better.  Tyler then told me that I wasn’t his type, he felt no romantic connection, and did I have any friends I would mind setting him up with?  I said, “no.”  Of course, he wanted to know why.  Instead of sugar-coating my response by saying something along the lines of, “I don’t generally set my friends up with guys I’ve gone out with,” I said, “because I think you are extremely full of yourself and I wouldn’t subject any of my friends to your company.”

Tyler promptly responded, “You should leave now.”

And so I did.  Happily.

I like to think my judgment has improved in recent years and though I’m still no good at lying, I think I’ve at least become better at not being a fucking doormat.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

It's a very fine line between sweet and scary

My best friend from high school went to college about two hours from my own institution of higher education.  She thought that Tom, a new friend she’d met at Penn State, would be perfect for me.  I listened intently while she gushed about all the reasons Tom and I would make a perfect couple.  Of course, I excitedly gave her permission to give Tom my screen name, as living two hours apart didn’t make it very easy to simply meet for a drink to dip our toes in romantic waters.   Besides, she knew me better than almost anyone, right?

And I liked Tom enough.  It’s hard to say through AIM and phone conversations alone whether or not you’re truly compatible with someone, but it seemed as though there could be potential.  We had only been talking for two or three weeks, tops, when the IM chat one day turned to my hunger.  I mentioned a craving that could only be satiated by Diet Coke and Peanut m&ms.  Tom replied by saying he’d be right over, but living two hours apart, I assumed he was kidding and promptly returned to studying.

Two hours later my phone rang.  It was Tom, downstairs, asking me to let him in my dorm.  I was beyond shocked.  Flabbergasted.  When I went down to meet Tom (for the first time, mind you), he stood before me proudly bearing my sought after Diet Coke and  Peanut m&ms.  Under normal circumstances, this gesture would have been perceived as incredibly sweet and romantic.  IF Tom had been my boyfriend or even just a friend I had known for a long time.  BUT he was neither, so instead of feeling giddy, I was freaked out.

It didn’t take me long to realize that Tom also expected to spend the night.  I know this because he said, “I brought things to stay overnight.”  When I told him I didn’t think that would be appropriate (though I probably cited my roommates as excuses, not the fact that WE’D NEVER MET BEFORE), he said, “So I’m just supposed to drive two more hours back?”

Umm… yep.  Precisely!

Tom and I never talked again after that night.  And though I’m sure he meant well, it was just too much.  I’ve been told once or twice that I come on too strong, but Tom wins the blue ribbon in that category.  There’s sweet, and then there’s scary.  Unfortunately, Tom landed on the wrong side of that fine line.