Thursday, July 21, 2005
Mortifying Romantic Moments
This week’s topic for the Dainty, Delectable, Demystifying Divas (plus one) and those Intriguing, Dangerous, and Sexy Gentlemen is a discussion of one’s most embarrassing dating moments. Technically, I'm not supposed to bat today, but do you think that's going to stop me? No way!

I know what you are thinking. This must be all about spinach in the teeth, coming back from the ladies room dragging a toilet paper trail, stories about slips showing, or being sick in his car. Not so, at least, not from me. Au contraire. My two little stories for you involve embarrassment that was handed to me by my dates.

Both of these stories come from the same year in college. I was a junior and living in my sorority house. My boyfriend at the time, the Texas rodeo cowboy/navy firefighter was never able to attend any sorority functions, so my friends set me up. For Barn Dance, they found me a “nice” boy from a “good” frat. Suuuure.

What they neglected to mention was that he had a drinking problem. Either that, or he had recently grown gills and swimming in alcohol was the only way for him to survive. He was so drunk, in fact, that his frat brothers finally dragged him to our house 2 hours late, after we had missed dinner. He puked in my sorority house’s bushes. When the bus driver saw him (the guy who was supposed to drive us to the dance) he refused to let him board. So all of that patience expended for a puking date and then he couldn’t even attend the dance. Lovely. I left the slobbering drunk in the quite capable hands of his slightly less drunken frat brothers and went to the party by myself.

I can’t tell you how much this embarrassed me. Too many people assumed that this was the boyfriend instead of some random fix-up. I was tarred and feathered with the puke and piss of his public humiliation. I had no feelings for this person except an initially open mind that was quickly replaced by revulsion. I wish, in fact, that he had canceled on me instead of attempting to meet his obligations.

Now, that was bad. But it was nothing compared to this:

Early in the Spring semester of my junior year, my sorority was holding it’s formal. This was a ritzy shindig where all the girls are in black dresses. It was a catered affair and I really didn’t want to miss it, but once again the cowboy couldn’t make it. So a different friend set me up with a “really nice guy” who she also billed as a “singing cowboy.”

He called me on the phone to arrange things (a vast improvement over Mr. Pukey Pants from the Fall) and everything looked to work out just fine. That was, until he called me back with a conflict. The Singing Cowboy performed with a singing group on campus. Unfortunately, the manager had accepted a last-minute gig at a local coffee shop/open ministry. However, he assured me that it was only a five-minute performance and that we would still make it to the formal.

So, the night of the big do, he comes to pick me up. My hair is up, I’m wearing heels and nylons, and this beautiful black dress with black lace. Very elegant. Very chic. My good friend and her date decided to accompany us to his gig so that I wouldn’t be alone. I should say that the Singing Cowboy showed up in jeans and tennis shoes for our date. He then explained that he would change after the gig. Ooookay.

So we go to this gig and wait. Then, my friend, her date, and I discover that the gig is for the Gay and Lesbian Foundation’s get-together. So there we are, standing in the back of the room wondering why everybody is staring at us. Granted, the rest of the attendees were in jeans and looked like typical college grunge and we were dressed like “the Young Republicans Go To The Plaza”, but whatever. We also apparently looked very hetero: college girls in makeup and heels and a guy with his arm around a girl. Dead giveaways!

But it turned out that we had to wait nearly 2 hours before the Singing Cowboy and his troupe had had their moment in the spotlight. It then took him another 20 minutes to change clothes and get back to where we were waiting. To cut to the chase, we only just barely made it back to the house in time to catch the bus to the venue. Dinner was long over when we arrived, so I had the distinct pleasure of knowing I’d paid for two meals I would never even see, let alone taste and enjoy.

We danced. Or, I should say that I danced and he did an imitation of Elaine’s dancing on Seinfeld. Scary. An hour and a half later I was ready to call it quits and we boarded a bus to depart. The bus was delayed a bit in leaving, so I was treated to a serenade. Yes. That’s right. This really annoying, grabby-handed, singing cowboy decided to serenade me on a bus in front of several of my sisters and their dates. He made an ass of himself, embarrassed the hell out of me, and I just wanted to disappear. The serenade was some song from a commercial (at the time), but it was so off-key that I’ve obliterated the details of the memory from my mind. Particularly since the rest of the yahoos on the bus were trying so hard to keep it in the forefront of all discussions on all possible topics.

Post-World War II Poland: Did you hear what Phoenix’s date did at formal?
Benzene: Did you hear about Phoenix's Formal date?

I vowed to never see him again.

But two days later he called and apologized for everything and suggested we go see a movie. I agreed. (I should have listened to my first instincts.)

Singing cowboy didn’t have a car, so I drove to his place to pick him up. The movie was supposed to start in 20 minutes, but when I got to his door he didn’t even have socks or pants on. He was in his boxers! It took him 10 minutes to finish dressing. I couldn’t believe it. What takes so long? Well, it turns out that he couldn’t find his wallet.

He informed me of this when we arrived at the ticket counter. So, I drove and paid for a date that had been his idea. It really pissed me off. To add insult to injury, the only movie he would agree to see was “Naked Gun 33 1/3.” You know, the one with Anna Nicole’s big bouncing….

Mortified. Embarrassed. Humiliated. Wish I could disappear into the upholstery chagrin. Those were my worst dates ever.
posted by Phoenix | 10:21 AM


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