Blind dates are never easy. But not many live up to their name and make you wish you were blind. However, soon after my divorce, I had a blind date with a toothless, redneck, wifebeater that made me swear off blind dating forever.
I had been married for twenty years, and had recently gone through a very bad divorce. My husband’s last words to me still rang in my ears, “No one will ever have you. You got your divorce and now you’ll end up alone.” A large part of me believed that, with my self esteem at an all-time low and feeling like a failure. Add to that having the body of a forty year old mother of three, and a lot of years as a couch potato on the weekends. So when a co-worker mentioned her cousin was also divorced and was so lonely, I sympathized. Could she give him my number? Sure. Why not? Misery loves company.
He called and said very little. He seemed quiet and reserved. He must be shy, I thought. He asked if I would meet him a local Shoney’s for dinner. I thought maybe Shoney’s isn’t exactly a rich man’s date restaurant, but figured he must be reeling financially from his divorce, too. I agreed to meet him.
I splurged the last of my week’s free money to have my hair done, my nails done, and buy a new dress. After all, my first date after twenty years, I wanted to look damn good! I spent hours getting ready, and went in there thinking I did a pretty good job of making myself presentable. I told the hostess I was meeting someone, and the look of pity she gave me should have made me realize something was not right. However, when she motioned toward the man in the back booth, and I looked at him, I thought he didn’t look that bad, at least at first glance.
However, approaching the table, I immediately knew where the look of pity came from. He smelled of a lot of neglected showers, and when he smiled, he showed a full mouth of gums. No teeth. None. I think I almost passed out at that point, but I didn’t want to hurt his feelings, so I sat down as far away from him as possible and was determined to make it through the evening somehow. After all, I had manners, right?
He told me I looked “PURTY” and all I could manage was a quiet “Thanks” before immersing myself in my menu. The waitress took our orders and he started asking me about myself. I explained that I was working full-time while going to school at night to finish my degree in mathematics. He smiled and said, “Well..I guess that’s ok. I mean, I’ve found that generally education and women just don’t mix, but you seem ok.” I laughed, thinking he can’t be that much of a pig, can he? He must be joking. I said, “You mean as long as I know my place, it’s ok?” He said, “Yep.”
I began to pray. Dear God, please make this date go fast or help me think of a way to get out of here without making a scene. I’m a fairly passive person, and making a scene is just not something I’m very good at. But I was beginning to think it might be time to actually become more assertive. He continued, “My wife left me. She was a good cook, too. Had me four kids in eight years. And I don’t understand why she left. I mean, I was a good husband. I only hit her twice the whole time I knew her.”
The waitress sat our food down, and I immediately looked at my watch. “Oh, is it that late? I’m sorry. I have to go. My kids are home alone, and I promised them I wouldn’t be gone long.” Ok, so it was a flimsy excuse, but at this point, I couldn’t waste any time thinking of a better one. I offered to pay for dinner (He let me.) and I ran out of there. I drove home frantically thinking of how quickly I could get my number changed and kill my co-worker without going to prison.