If love is the answer, can you please rephrase the question? – Lily Tomlin
Nobody wants that nickname. But if every one of your texts ends either with an exclamation mark or an emoticon (or both) and you happen to slap my butt not once but twice on our first date, you’re gonna get dubbed. You should also probably be slapped, but I’m nice, so I’ll refrain.
I met Mr. EB in, ironically, a leadership class at work. He was the only guy in the room even close my age and happened to have very sweet-looking eyes. As luck would have it, I got teamed up with him for our small group and I thought he was nice, well dressed, well mannered and very professional. I learned he was in grad school and was wanting to continue on to law school. Sweet! I like guys with ambition. I did my best to flirt and get his attention, which apparently worked because I had an email from him the next morning.
Eventually he asked me out and we exchanged numbers. And that’s where it started…
The first text was ok.
Ok, Hi! You’re excited to talk to me. Great, I like the enthusiasm.
How are you! :)
Wait…was that a question? Why are you smiling? Did the misuse of punctuation make you happy?
Do you want to go out this Friday night?!! :)
Ok, either you are REALLY excited, or you’re yelling at me. And smiling about it.
This trend continued for every text he sent me. ! :) I eventually just started reading them with this happy, shouting voice in my head.
Despite these odd texts and against my better judgement, I agreed to go out with him. We were set to meet at a local bar to grab a drink and get to know each other better. I got to the bar a little early and got my own drink (as is my preference so that if the date heads south early then I can bail without feeling guilty). After 20 minutes and there was still no sign of him I was a getting a bit concerned. Then I received a text.
Are you here!? :)
Yes… where are you?
Listening to the band at the outside bar! :)
Considering there was no band playing at the bar I was sitting at, I had the funny feeling I was in the wrong place. So, I proceeded to chug my 9.0% ABV craft brew and feeling fuzzy, I made my way across the parking lot to the OTHER bar where he sat.
Upon my arrival he promptly orders me a beer and tells me I need to catch up as he’s on his third. He seems to have certainly taken a load off with his untucked polo shirt and jeans, a far cry from professional shirt and tie I was used to seeing him in. He proceeded to tell me that he was a former marine and how he had experienced seeing four of his friends die before his eyes and was the pallbearer for one of them. After that uplifting tale I was ready for my third beer but I was starting to get pretty hungry.
Some of his friends were part of the band and he insisted that we stay and listen to their second set. While talking to the band during their break, he introduced me and gave me a quick slap on the butt. I shot him a look after which he apologized and blamed the beer. I wouldn’t have minded quite so much except I was wearing a flouncy dress that he happened to catch the underside of and literally slapped my butt. I should have left then and there but Mr. EB had promised me dinner which I desperately needed after three beers.
By 9:30 p.m. we still had not eaten, I had drank my weight in water to fill my empty stomach, he had slapped my butt “accidentally” yet again and the band had still not played the song he was waiting to hear. Also, I had learned he was about a decade older than I had originally thought, had been married, divorced and had two girls, ages 9 and 12, at home. If there had ever been an iceberg’s chance in Hell of a second date, that just melted it.
The night concluded by me following him 20 mins down the road to a restaurant that had to reopen its kitchen to feed us. Apparently Mr. EB had formally worked there so they were willing to go through some inconvenience but I felt bad. We parted ways and on the following day he sent me the following:
Hi!! :) I had a great time with you last night! You looked awesome! Hope you had a great time too and that we can go out again soon!!! :)
I told him that I just didn’t think I could date a guy with kids, but I appreciated him taking me out. (Although, in reality, I probably would have had a better time alone in my apartment eating at a reasonable hour, enjoying a glass of wine and keeping my tushy slap-free. Oh well.)
Until next time, smile on,