Happy 100 posts, people! The past 99 posts have been very enlightening. I had absolutely no idea what I was getting myself into when I started. Now I’m hooked. You hear that, readers? You’re like crack. I don’t even know what crack is like. But I know that you are like it.
The time is finally here– the time for me to tell you the greatest of my stories. You’ve heard several of my terrible date stories. There are others but none quite so robust as those that I have told. Except this one.
I was asked out to dinner by a friend of a friend of a friend during my last spring break of college. To say that I was in a desperate place would probably be an understatement. It was bad, guys. We only speak of that time in hushed tones. So I had the chance to go out on a date, and it was slated to be a major confidence booster. (Are you noticing a trend? That only when I really feel like I need a date does it end in disaster? Yeah, me neither…)
On paper, this guy was perfect. He was several years older than me. (And still is, unless there’s some freaky time warp thing going on.) He was good-looking, had a college degree, and was working in stocks for an up-and-coming company/firm/thing. He also had a sick car. I’m not one to turn down a free dinner, especially one in the super-schwanky part of town. Never in my life have I seen a check that big at the end of a date. (Plus, remember that one time I tried to have the perfect date on almost no budget? Yeah, that didn’t work out.) I had no idea what I was getting myself into, but if I added it all up in my head, it sure looked like an equation for happiness.
Here’s the thing. That’s a short list of his attributes. It’s short because that’s all I knew about him at the time. It’s still short because that’s all that’s worth telling about him. There was not an interesting thing in the bunch. (Except the car. The car was amazing. I still have dreams about the car.)
Maybe it wasn’t actually that he’s a boring person. Maybe it was his three glasses of scotch that he had before and during dinner, while I was stone-cold sober the whole time. Maybe it was his “I’m too cool for you” attitude. He was leaning so far back in his chair with one foot propped on his knee that I was secretly hoping that he’d fall over and cause a commotion so I could make my getaway. Being boring didn’t warrant me to cut and run without an arguable excuse. I should have seen it coming.
It started with our inability to keep a conversation going. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a talker. I can talk to a brick wall for days, especially when there’s a television mounted to that brick wall. Then I talk to the television and the brick wall. So we talked, but we talked at each other. No topic lasted more than five minutes before we faded off and stared bleakly around the gastro-pub, hoping for the appearance of some D-list celebrity or a street robbery or a parade of dancing lemurs. Dancing lemurs are not a substitute for a date. (If you took me on a date to see dancing lemurs, we could talk…)
Every other sentence he said used the word “asshole” or “jackass.” I have my choice expletives, but they don’t make an appearance during a first date at a fancy restaurant. But not even this was a deal-breaker.
After verbal ping-pong for over two hours, he signed his name at the bottom of the receipt and we picked up our coats to go. I was mentally biting my fingernails, contemplating how to end the date gracefully. A goodnight kiss seemed to be pushing it at this point, and frankly, I wasn’t sure that a “Call me!” was even in order. That’s when he leaned over the table and said in a voice not even close to a whisper,
“I have to pee. Do you have to pee?”
Urination. That’s how we were ending the date. Nervousness over. No way was there going to be a second date.
But sure, I’ll use the restroom before leaving the restaurant. There’s nothing socially inappropriate about that, even though the way he asked was off-putting and actually quite weird. In an odd turn of events, there was a line for the men’s room but not the women’s. When he exited the restroom, I was waiting in the hallway for him. That’s when I got the grande finale.
“My, you’re quite efficient, aren’t you?”
Efficient peeing. That was his compliment. This guy with a fabulous car and a successful career and very shiny shoes was complimenting me on how quickly I could void my bladder.
It still gives me shivers. I may have even just shed a single tear.
I had to get out of there. He wanted to walk me to my car, but I only let him get as far as the elevator to the parking garage. He got a hug, but it was quick, and my phone was stashed as far down in my purse as possible in a subconscious attempt to prevent him from ever calling me again.
And that, my friends, is why neither I nor my best friends can hear the word “efficient” without giggling uncontrollably.
I am telling this story now, as my 100th blog post, because it actually has a moral. (Unlike any of my other stories. They teach you not to go to the gym ever and not to take me to the grocery store.) This moral is so poignant because it epitomizes the theme of my blog. And yes, it has taken me 99 posts to figure out that theme, and I am totally ok with it.
This blog, like so many other blogs out there, is about perfection. It is about finding the perfect moment, the perfect words, the perfect story. But most of all, it is about working towards my own perfection. It is my odd-ball way of processing my personal struggles to become the person that I believe I am capable of being. Through hundreds of hours of reading many of your blogs, too, I think that you all feel something similar.
We’re super screwed up, you guys. Like, all of us. Here, there’s no hiding that fact. Instead, we celebrate our “diversity,” and it has nothing to do with our ethnicity or religion or political views. It has everything to do with the demons we fight every day– food, drugs, abusive relationships, careers, children, money, the ways you are choosing to give back to the world, or the Martians which are coming to get you. This isn’t the movies. (Damn it…) Those struggles never actually end. They become a part of your soul, a part of your identity, a part of your future, too.
Here’s the kicker: If you think that you’re not battling one or more of these things, you’re an idiot. Here’s the second kicker: If you are seeking out people who are not battling one or more of these things, you’re a double idiot. Because you won’t find them.
And if you do, they are the most boring people in the world.
They look perfect on paper, but they have the personalities of cows. Now, cows are noble beasts. They do good things for this world. (Except I’m lactose intolerant, so I’m a little bitter.) But do you want to be friends with one of them? They just…stand there. And stare at you. And chew. Sometimes they frolic, but even that looks super awkward– utters flopping, and such.
I never want to be like that. I never want people in my life like that– people who have so few flaws that they also have so few successes. I am fully prepared to disappoint anyone who is looking for such a perfect person, because it sure as hell isn’t me. Friends don’t make friends with cows. Friends sympathize when friends work with cows. Friends definitely don’t let friends date cows.
Cows don’t make good dates, especially when they compliment you on your peeing abilities.