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“Hey,” I texted him at 6:30pm. “I think I’m going to be a little bit late tonight. Can we push it back to 8:15?”
This is the standard line I use before every single date, because A) I probably will be late and B) “Are we still on for later?” sounds so desperate. Nothing had changed in the past 18 hours since we’d set the date, so there’s no logical reason we wouldn’t still be on, but before I put in the effort to shave my legs, I had to confirm.
“8:15 sounds good. See you there ;)”
Ugh. A winky face. I hated this guy already. Though I suppose this is what I get for continuing to chase after guys who are old enough to not quite be my dad, but perhaps a young, spritely uncle. I got to business on my makeup in an effort to transform from the gargoyle I saw before me to the something that sort of matched what I looked like in my pictures, while my roommate sat on my bed and asked what I was going to wear.
“Do you think I should take an Uber?”
“Where are you guys going again?”
“Some new restaurant downtown. It just opened this week.”
“I just don’t want him to think I’m, like, assuming I’m going to get really drunk on this date. He’s like a hundred, and I don’t want to seem like this young party girl who’s not to be taken seriously. I don’t really plan to drink a lot, anyway, ya know? I just always end up drinking just a little bit too much to drive. Like the kind of drunk where, ya know, I can get home if I have to, but I probably shouldn’t, and I’d definitely get a DUI if I get caught.”
“Ugh. Yeah. The worst. You should just call a ride then. Parking down there is a bitch anyway. Besides, he won’t know you called an Uber unless you tell him.”
Under my roommate’s advisement, I wore a green dress, a denim jacket, and booties, then I called a ride. I arrived at 8:30. As we pulled up, I saw him, standing outside the restaurant in a sport coat waiting for me.
I’m underdressed. This place is swanky as hell. And I can’t fucking get out of the backseat of this Mazda right now where he can see me. What kind of fucking gentleman waits outside the restaurant for his date anyway?! Get with the times, Fancy Man, and sit at the bar staring at your phone until I arrive like some douchebag who started college post-T9 Word would.
“Hey, sorry to ask this, but can you pull up and drop me off around the corner?” I begged my driver.
“But this is the address you put in.”
“I know, I know. But that guy right there is my date tonight, and I want him to think I drove here.”
“What difference does it make?”
“Can you just pull up and pretend like you’re my mother on the first day of middle school? Jesus.”
There goes my Uber rating. I walked up to Fancy Man and apologized for my lateness, but explained I’d had trouble finding fictional parking. He opened the door for me and we walked in.
It wasn’t long before the server took our drink orders. Fancy Man asked for a wine recommendation. Normally I just order the second cheapest wine on the menu, because I don’t want to look like a cheap piece of shit, but mama’s not trying to break the bank. This was uncharted territory.
Ten minutes later, the server came out with a bottle of Merlot that was well down the wine list, and poured Fancy Man a taste, because it was that kind of place. I watched in awe, as he actually tasted it. I’m accustomed to awkwardly making eye contact with the schmuck who got stuck tasting the wine, as they gulp it down, unsure what they’re looking for, and quickly tell the waiter “Yeah, it’s fine.” What is this guy, a prince? Good lord.
We downed our first bottle quickly. And then a second. And I felt myself becoming more and more grateful I hadn’t driven as I started blurting out facts about myself that no man needs to know.
“Well, yeah. Sorry for being late again. I’m Italian, so it just takes a long time to shave.” You fucking stop that right now.
“Yeah, my parents are great, but my mom called me a cunt once, and I never quite got over it.” Girl, no.
“My ex-boyfriend was terrible. I think it’s because he had a tiny penis. Nothing worse than a tiny penis, ya know?” SHUT THE FUCK UP.
Then we ordered another bottle of wine.
The rest of the night is something of a blur. I remember migrating to a bar down the street and possibly taking shots? I asked the bartender how long he thought Fancy Man and I had been together, because I thought it would be so cute if he thought we were already a couple, and I loudly pouted about how empty the bar was. I called a girlfriend from the bathroom, and started divulging the deets of the night until I remember her saying, “Wait. You’re still there? We’ve been on the phone for a long time, you need to get back to him. He’s one hundred percent going to think you’re puking. Or worse. Shitting.”
And of course, I remember confessing to him, that I was, in fact, a piece of shit who expected to get too drunk to drive, as he waited with me for an Uber to arrive and take me home.
I’m now sitting here at my desk typing this, battling a hangover that will absolutely last through Saturday, possibly Sunday. My false lashes are sitting on a Post-It because I didn’t even pretend to shower before coming into work this morning. And a quick peek at my camera roll reveals that I spent at least fifteen minutes in the bar bathroom taking no fewer than 52 selfies at every different angle of my face imaginable, because — if memory serves me right — I wondered if I was still pretty from above, below, or beside myself. I don’t remember whether or not I had a good time, and I’m not sure if we kissed, but I do know that any hopes of convincing this guy I was a person with my shit together went straight down the toilet at 1:30am, along with the calamari we’d ordered.
Yet somehow by the grace of God, Buddha, Allah, or whatever deity you pray to, Fancy Man just texted me to see if I’d like to go out again sometime. Psycho..