I get asked about this a lot – My worst date ever. It’s kind of funny, because until I started writing this blog, I’d never really thought about it. I’ve had so many bad dates in my life that it never really occured to me to compare the bad against the bad and come up with the winner of the worst date contest.
Maybe it’s not supposed to work that way? Maybe the “worst date ever” is supposed to be so bad that the second it’s over you know – that was it, no date could ever be worse? Who knows…
Well, here it is, My Worst Date Ever story:
A friend of mine had mentioned that she thought I might like this guy she worked with. Honestly, she didn’t tell me anything about him other than that she thought he was cute and that he was a friend of hers from work. And I figured that if she liked him enough to call him a friend then he must be a good guy. I told her that I’d be interested in meeting him, so she suggested that I meet them out at happy hour one night. Which I did. The bar was insanely crowded and loud (happy hour!) and he and I could barely hear each other talk. But I guess he thought I was cute because later that night I got a call from my friend telling me that he’d asked her for my number and to expect a call (I’d given her the go ahead to give it to him).
Now, before I get into the date, I should mention that this was a few years ago. For the last few years I’ve stuck to some pretty strict rules about first dates. Rule #1 is never, ever, commit to a meal with a guy you don’t know. If I meet someone for a drink and it turns out I like them and I want to get dinner from there, fine. But I never commit to dinner up front.
This is the date that caused me to set that rule.
Fast forward a week. We met for dinner at a restaurant of his choosing (He’d called and asked me out to dinner, I said yes. The call was quick and to the point.). I didn’t know the place, but I knew the ‘hood and was cautious as it’s not an area I usually hang out in (full of pricey, showy places with blah food). Anyway, I knew I was in for a long night when the waiter came to take our order. My date ordered several courses of food and a bottle of wine.
It was a long night. A very long night. I could tell before the first course arrived that he and I were ill-suited for each other. He was an ex-frat boy who still hung out with his college buddies and drank to excess on the weekends (I’m not judging). I didn’t go for that type of guy in college and I wasn’t going to start in my thirties. But I had a little problem on my hands. He thought he was charming. And funny. And smart. And he was a friend of a friend. And while I had decided that I’d had enough of his company about 15 minutes into the date, I had several hours to go before our meal would be finished. I felt I had no choice but to humor him, completely.
Was he a complete nightmare who made me cry in the ladies room? No. He was a jerk who became more of a jerk as the night wore on and as he had more to drink. I tried as hard as I could to stay unfailingly upbeat and friendly no matter how tedious the conversation got (the phrase “I was so wasted” featured prominently in most of his stories). And eventually the night did end. We split the check (I insisted on spiltting the check) and went our seperate ways.
As horrible as some of my dates from online dating have been, and sure, some have been pretty horrible, I think it’s kinda funny that my worst date ever was a friend of a friend. I mean, people are always complaining about online dating and how it’s such a bad way to meet quality people and I’d do better with recommendations from friends. But I think there’s something to be said for going into a dating situation with a complete stranger. If worst date guy were just some random guy I met in a bar or online I would’ve made a polite excuse early in the evening and left early (leaving my share of the bill, of course). But I didn’t do that because I felt obligated to pretend I was having fun. Or try to.
So I guess there are a couple of things to be learned here:
- There are no good or bad ways to meet a person, What matters is what happens after you meet (online or in the flesh).
- Dinner really is a bad idea for a first date.
Or maybe there’s some bigger, more profound lesson that I’m missing? It wouldn’t surprise me one bit.
Tags: first date, Online dating, set up