Worst Date Ever

KINGSTON, R.I. – I have sworn off blind dates before, but have always relented after a suitable string of unsuccessful “regular” dates. What’s wrong with a blind date anyway?

You have to meet people somehow. And this really wasn’t a blind date.

This was someone I had talked to, first on the Internet, and then on the phone. We chatted for a few hours online. We had a few brief, but good, conversations.

She sounded nice enough. So I figured, what the hell, I’ll meet her blind.

I should have known better. I should have asked for a picture.

Actually, I think I did ask, but she said she didn’t have one that she could send me online.

I should have insisted.

We shared some interests. She sounded O.K.

You have to meet people somehow. We had met through the free AOL personals, back when they were free. She was a student at the University of Rhode Island, studying oceanography. She was a senior, which put her into my age range.

I was on the five-year plan at the local two-year community college, CCRI, studying slacking (which is probably why I am a writer today). So anybody with a little motivation, a little scientific interest, sounded pretty neat to me.

She liked movies, Depeche Mode, politics, and the ocean.

Good enough.

We arranged to meet at a pizza place near the URI campus. We both liked pizza. There’s nothing like a low-key first date, in a fairly non-threatening environment, I thought. We were both just college students meeting to talk over a pie at the local pizza shack.

I got there early.

She waddled in a few minutes later. I think. I am not sure that I noticed her right away. I mean, sure I noticed her, I heard her come in and looked up, and not seeing anyone, looked down.

And there she was: One of the seven dwarves. She couldn’t be my date. Snow White must be lurking somewhere nearby. The thought that Disney On Ice must be in town flashed briefly in my mind.

She had to be one of the seven dwarves because she had a beard like one of them, and was only about yea high.

Not that I have anything against little people, but shouldn’t she have warned me?
I mean, I probably still would have gone out with her if she had told me she was a midget. Probably, I would have, I just wouldn’t have expected anything to come of it. I was a shallow, but courteous youth.

But shouldn’t she have shaved?

Scraggly hairs bobbed up and down as she introduced herself to me. I can honestly say that I have no idea what we talked about because I couldn’t help but watch the rough, black wires of her chinny-chin-chin the entire time.

The one thing I do remember is trying to order pizza slices, instead of a fresh pie, because that meant I wouldn’t have to sit and talk with her any longer than would be polite. But wouldn’t it have been polite to shave?

Anyway, they were fresh out of slices, so we had to wait. We must have talked about something, but I was just too appalled (and trying to be courteous about it) to have been able to focus on both making conversation and remembering it.

That was six years ago. I wish I could say that I’ve sworn off blind dates, but at least I learned my lesson: Always order the pie in advance.

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