It was a chilly Thursday in the fall and, per usual, I was metroing to meet my date. My date was, according to his profile, a cute Jewish lawyer who enjoyed running marathons and wore thick-framed stylish glasses. He claimed to be 5’11″, so I assumed he was closer to 5’9″, which was fine with me. This is a slight departure from my usual type, but you have to branch out sometimes. We had agreed to meet at an Irish bar with a cozy dark wood vibe right in the middle of the trendiest area of town and I was running late (surprise), which I, as usual, blamed on the perennially fucked up Metro system.
When I walked in I spotted him almost immediately. Well… I spotted a guy that looked sort of like his profile. We all pick our most flattering photos for our dating profiles but this guy must have used the world’s best photographer and some light Photoshop. I’m garbage, but I’m not a horrible person, so I greeted him and sat down in hopes that he had a dazzling personality or interesting conversation. Sadly, as is the case with many online dates, there was zero chemistry from the start. For me. He, on the other hand, felt much differently.
I gave polite answers and tried to be pleasant company without seeming romantically interested. I kept slightly turned away from him, leaning back, legs and arms crossed when possible, kept a sizable distance between our barstools, and tried my best to give off “not interested” in every possible way. At least so I thought. He had just asked if I liked wine (duh) and if I had ever been to any of the area wineries (I hadn’t). That’s when shit got weird.
“You know,” he said, leaning in too close so that I could smell the shitty scotch on his breath, “my mom loves wine too. I think you guys would really get along! You should come with us to this winery next weekend!”
Mayday, red alert, abort, HELP. Clearly, we had very different ideas about how this date was going. We had only had two drinks and I was just on the verge of making my exit anyway, so I feigned a need to go to the bathroom. In the bathroom, I emergency dialed my bestie, Betty, for assistance. As luck would have it (as we had carefully planned it), she was with a group of her coworkers at an oyster bar two blocks away and told me to come immediately.
I left the bathroom and headed back to the bar where I began blinking in an exaggerated way and rubbing my right eye.
“Oh man,” I said apologetically, “My contact slipped out on the way to the bathroom and it’s really bothering me. I think I need to head home!”
I mean… this is a pretty clear “I’m trying to politely leave this interaction” signal, right? I think?
However, instead of taking the hint and letting me go, he proceeded to find any possible way to keep me around.
“Oh no! That sucks! Well, you don’t have to go home. There’s a CVS like a block away and we can go get you some contact solution or some eyedrops!”
“Um, no… no… it’s really starting to hurt… I think I just need to head home.”
“Did you try taking it out and putting it back in? Are you sure?” he tried again.
“Yeah, no, I really just need to head home I think,” I apologized again, putting down the cash for my drinks and giving thanks that FOR ONCE I had cash on me.
“Okay, well I drove here so I can just drive you home,” he offered.
JESUS. This guy was fucking relentless and I was starting to get creeped out at his insistence. I definitely did not want him to know where I lived. Also, I was obviously going to go meet Betty down the street to keep drinking and not to my house.
“No no, I live way out across the river, it’s fine, I’m just going to metro!” I insisted, putting on my coat and walking outside.
“Well, I’ll walk you to the metro,” he offered, following me out the door. Mercifully, the metro stop was just across the street.
Based on his previous behavior, I had a hunch that this would be an awkward goodbye. We stopped in front of the metro station and I tried to keep things quick, curt, and professional.
“Well, I had a nice time, thanks for meeting me!” I said, keeping about three feet of distance between us.
“I had a great time too! I can’t wait to see you again,” he said stepping forward.
I knew what he was going to do and I tried to dodge him by leaning my neck and face as far to the side as possible and raising my arms in an exaggerated way to clearly signal a hug.
Nope. He went for my lips like a heat seeking missile to a target or a basic white girl to a Michael Kors bag. Honestly, I feel bad for the people walking around us who had to watch this travesty of a kiss happen. In fact, if any of you in DC remember seeing a skinny balding man making out with a cringing blonde girl who was maneuvering her neck like an injured T-rex in a clear effort to extricate herself from the situation in front of a metro stop, I would like to personally apologize. It was as bad for me as it was for you.
Finally, I managed to free myself and arrange my face into some semblance of a smile that may have looked more like a grimace or gas. Unclear. I faked a look at my phone.
“Okay, well my train is coming in in two minutes so I better run! Thanks again!” I turned and ran-walked towards the metro escalators and down into my deliverance.
At the bottom of the escalator, I ran into another dilemma. How long should I wait to be sure that he was gone so that he wouldn’t see me emerging from the metro moments later and walking in the opposite direction? I had never been in the position of hiding from someone in a metro station before. Where had he parked? Was he a slow walker? Was he lingering outside the metro station to preserve the magic of our kiss and envisioning the wonderful time I would have with his mother at the vineyard?
As it turns out, five minutes was a sufficient wait time. I cautiously crept off the escalator, scanning for any sign of my date. Thankfully, he was nowhere to be seen. I made it unseen to the oyster bar where Betty was waiting for me with a round of shots.
I think there are several lessons to be learned from this unfortunate experience. 1) Don’t ask a girl to meet your mother on the first date, 2) pay attention to the body language and social cues she’s giving off, which will then save you from 3) the potential embarrassment of planting a clearly unwanted kiss on said girl in a very public place and causing her to hide from you in public transportation. And you thought I’d never give you any useful advice! You’re welcome. .