Thursday, January 25, 2007


Given the current dating moritorium, I thought I'd share a story that makes me happy not to be dating. It's a terrible first date story! I wonder if I could make a series of these...lord knows I've had plenty. Regardless, I hope you enjoy this one.

Back in Seattle, about a year before I moved to Chapel Hill for grad school, I read about a band, IMIJ, that sounded interesting. They were playing at the Off-Ramp and I thought, "Hey, I have a car, it's easy to park around there. I'm going to the show." And I went, solo. As it turned out, I didn't love the band. I watched the show for a while and then moved to the bar.

A scrawny guy who reminded me of a miniature Pete Townshend, big nose and all, sat at the end of the bar, ordering Greyhounds. We made eye contact and he came and sat next to me. He asked where my boyfriend was, where my friends were. I said I was alone. He introduced himself as Otto. We had a long talk about my car. I was a little bit in love with my car, a 1970 Chevy Chevelle Malibu. We made a bet about how many seat belts the car had. He guessed there were a total of six male and six female components. I told him he was wrong, that there were eight of each. He bet me a drink that I was wrong. Of course, he was silly to make that bet since I only bet on a sure thing. We made our way out to the car and I showed him what he hadn't counted on--shoulder belts for the driver and one front-seat passenger (the shoulder belts were not connected to the lap belts). Otto was surprised and possibly irked that I won the bet. We sat in the front seat of the car and I showed him the seat belts. We kissed and then went back to the bar. I didn't let him buy me the drink since I had to drive home. But we made a date.

When Otto picked me up for our date, he was wearing a sports jacket over a sweater vest, but no shirt. No shirt, just a sweater vest. We drove to a Thai restaurant downtown and he proceeded to talk, uninterrupted, for almost the entire night. I'm a big talker and I've been known to dominate more than one conversation. In fact, I talk even more when I'm nervous, which happens on dates, so I could almost understand Otto's monologue. Almost. While we were at the restaurant the only time I spoke was too order my meal. I was fascinated. I couldn't quite believe it was happening. We went to a bar afterwards, he ordered a beer and I spoke again, ordering the same. He paused briefly and I said, "Isn't there anything you want to ask me?"

He looked at me blankly and said, "Like what?"

"I don't know. Maybe you want to know where I went to high school?" He'd been talking about his high school.

"Um, ok. Where did you go to high school?"

"I didn't go to high school. I went to college early."

"Oh, that's cool." And then he continued talking. That's my best stuff. I've never known someone who didn't have a follow up question to the "I didn't go to high school" line. (Except the one guy who thought I was joking. Even he repeatedly said, "That can't be true.") I smiled and listened. I thought, "I might as well learn my lesson. It had to happen sometime."

After the bar, we went to his house, which was an abandoned property just south of the Aurora bridge. I'm sure he was squatting. I sat on his lap and we kissed a little. The he drove me home.

I would have gone out with him again, but he didn't call. Maybe he preferred someone more assertive.

Grateful for: first date stories.

Drop me a line.

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