Monday, December 04, 2006

Not a good dating weekend

I don't always drink on a date, but last night I needed two glasses of wine to survive dinner .

First of all, the 34yo isn't 34. He saw somebody he knew at the restaurant -- actually a guy I went out with years ago, who was there with his wife and newborn (she's already back in her skinny jeans; I think I have to hate her).

"How do you know Jeff?" I asked my date.

"Oh, we both worked at [big sweatshop law firm] back in the day. I was assigned to be his mentor when he was a summer associate," he said blandly.

"Isn't he... older than you?" I asked.

"Oh. My age is wrong on my profile. I'm not really 34, I'm 41." he said, just as blandly, and laughed.

I don't like being lied to. Especially by men who lie about their age. Apparently he felt justified in lying about his age because a lot of people tell him he looks much younger than he is.

"They do? Really?" I said. "I don't see that."

Unfortunately, that was just his first lie of the evening. His profile neglects to mention that he was married before, has a child in college, and smokes. So this guy is a Big Fat Liar (BFL). And liars who laugh about their lies bear a striking resemblance to psychopaths.

BFL could tell I was annoyed, because I didn't say much and smiled tightly. He launched into an explanation of the way friends of his used to lie to women in order to get them into bed -- allegedly because he never approved, was in fact embarrassed, and did not indulge in the same kind of behavior -- and how now most of them are married to women whom they did and do not lie to. Apparently it's okay to lie to people some of the time, especially if they're really beautiful and you want to sleep with them. And women who disapprove of this kind of behavior are apparently very harsh, which is evidently not a good way to be.

Call me harsh, but I found all of this appalling. I don't know why I ever thought getting involved with this creep was worth my while; he told me during our first phone conversation that when he's bored, he likes to go to strip clubs and get strippers' phone numbers, allegedly because he's going to call them for a date. That should have tipped me off right away.

Moreover, BFL ostentatiously left his cell phone on the table. I just think that's rude. I had my cell phone in my purse, and it was on, but I didn't anticipate getting any calls; I left it on so that if BFL were delayed, he could let me know. (He was at the restaurant bar when I arrived, though, downing a Scotch. Apparently there are some family/sibling problems he's experiencing, and that was the reason for his somewhat distant and downcast mood during our date.)

So I was pretty annoyed at BFL. (Understatement.) So annoyed that I thought about leaving. But I was hungry -- and thirsty; the wait staff was ignoring us; apparently they mistook tense conversation for romance. I mentioned my thirst to him and he did nothing to summon help, so I started making a little flag from my knife and a napkin and told him I'd flag someone down. He got up quickly and went to ask the wait staff for some water. I grabbed my cell phone and dialed Little Marty; of course, I had to hang up because BFL was heading back to the table, but Marty called me back.

"I'm so sorry," I said to BFL, "it's important, I have to take this call."

"Help me!" I said to LM. "I'm on a horrible date. Make up a cover story to get me out of it."

"This is what you say," said LM. "You know, I've realized that we are really not compatible. I don't think this is going to go anywhere, so we probably should just call it a night."

Then I had a brainstorm. "No. I'm going to stay and order the most expensive thing on the menu. He says he has all this money -- he can afford it."

"Don't be passive-aggressive! Just get out of there!"

"No, no, it's fine, I'm fine. Thanks for listening. I'll talk to you later, goodbye," I sang, hung up, and headed back to the table.

"Sorry about that," I said, and quickly made up a cover story: my friend's father is dying of cancer in hospice, and I thought this was THE CALL, but it turned out just to be an update. If he could lie, so would I. It was kind of an evil lie, because Adir's chevruta's father had just passed away from cancer; I babysat for his daughter earlier on Sunday while he went to the funeral because Alona's on a business trip. The best lies contain a grain of truth.

The waitress had given us some water, and returned to the table to take our orders. I asked for a moderately priced glass of wine and the most expensive entree on the menu.

"Oh, I'm so sorry, we're all out of that," she said. So I chose the third-most-expensive item, which happens to be my favorite, the BBQ ribs. Normally I wouldn't get ribs on a date; they're messy and unladylike. But obviously I didn't care what he thought about me at this point, and was determined to cut my losses as much as possible.

The wine came, I drank it quickly and went from judgmental to giggly very soon. Then LM started sending me text messages on my phone, which rang each time:

Repeat after me... I changed my mind. I'm just not interested and would rather just leave. Have a good night.

You're not gonna do it, are ya?

All right. Stay. But my way's better!

Maybe we'll just annoy him with messages all night

You sure I can't keep annoying him?

Finally I turned off my phone (even though BFL didn't) and invented another lie: the friend calling me with an update on our friend's father's condition had just broken up with her boyfriend and was trying to get me to comfort her, even though I'd spent a good chunk of the day comforting her already. I don't know if he bought it, and again, don't care. I had a great dinner and enjoyed the wine, we talked about lighter matters -- Carlos Mencia, The Family Guy, etc. Apparently we have a few tastes in common.

When he dropped me off in front of my apartment, he said, "I had a good time tonight, but I have to think about it." As if!

"Think all you want," I chirped. "Take a few days." And I floated upstairs, filled with red meat, red wine, and jollity. Today I emailed the website where we met with a complaint:

BFL lies several times on his profile. He is not 34, he is 41. He is not single and never married; he is divorced. He has a child, who is not mentioned on his profile. He claims to be a non-smoker and he smokes. I found all of this out on our first date. He told me I was very "harsh" for being bothered by his lies.

Of course, they haven't always been responsive to complaints before, but maybe this time they'll make an exception.

It's funny -- I really enjoy drinking, and I hardly ever do it. I get so happy when I'm drunk. I mean, really happy. And I think, "Wow, I'm so happy. I should do this more often." Then I wake up the next morning with drinking amnesia -- I forget how happy it makes me, and months go by without me touching a drop.

I guess I'm lucky that way. I don't have to worry about developing a comorbid substance disorder, as many people with bipolar disorder do. The only thing I've ever gotten addicted to was Entenmann's, and I kicked that monkey off my back long ago.
Copyright (c) 2006 "Ayelet Survivor"


  1. Well! It sounds like you found a way to have fun and enjoy the evening in spite of youself.

    That's the way to do it... if you leave, you get no dinner. If you stay, he still carries the risk, you get a meal, and a good story. Hats off.

    Fudging 41 down to 34 is a wee bit ambitious, in my humble opinion. I could see a two or three year fudge-- though I still condemn it in principle. I didn't think men do it, though.

    I just accepted a SYAS match last night, and it's someone whose profile I'd viewed on Frumster before. It's amusing to me to see that the person who was 33 on Frumster is now magically 36. Not that I don't automatically tack on a few years to the age of any girl over 32 0r 33 already. (There's this one girl I went out with once who has stayed listed at 32 for like, four years already.. I happened to be at a friend's house once and his wife's High School alumni directory was lying around, and thumbing through it I saw her graduating year.... she's more like 38. You just gotta feel sorry for people like that.) So already I feel a little unsure about this match. I want someone who is secure in themselves, who feels that they're sexy and young no matter their age. I've been tempted to fudge my own age down too-- the odometer rolls over again soon-- but I've resisted it. I already look a few years younger, and I'd like to think I'll age in that graceful, George Clooney-like way that will make me more attractive as it happens.

    All right, a guy can dream.

  2. Uch, BFL sounds like a jerk. 41 to 34! He smokes, has a kid in college, etc? Sheesh.

    At least you got a good meal out of it. :)