I’ve been on my share of bad dates. One date so boring the woman next to me tried to save me. Then there was the guy who took me ice skating at Rockefeller Center to tell me he was seeing someone else. Most recently, a wine snob who was so pretentious it made my eyebrows ache from so many “you can’t be serious” facial expressions.
But after last night, all those shitty dates suddenly seem just fine. Goddamn hunky dory. The bar has fallen so low, friends, it’s slipped through the cracks of a subway grate.
I feel shaken, like I witnessed a trauma. The proverbial car crash and I could not look away. I was not a participating member of this date. That would be a completely different story. No, I was a voyeur of the awful, an eavesdropper on the excruciating, a rubbernecker of such rotten romance I felt like I had food poisoning. It was that shitty (pun intended).
How shitty? Well I took notes, even transcribed dialogue. Behold:
The Worst Date Ever Witnessed by Yours Truly
I was on my laptop, sitting in a cafe in Soho trying to finish my Gramercy Park story. I was struggling to get in “the zone” and easily distracted. They have gelato here, maybe I should get a cup. The ceilings are really high, like, strangely high for a cafe. What is up with the vibe of the couple sitting next to me?
Uncomfortable tension billowed from their table like a thick smog of awkwardness. The negative energy cause my attention, it drew me in like a black hole. I consider myself pretty great at reading and situations, but this was cloudy. Were they on an awful first date? Or maybe they were a couple on vacation- they kinda looked like tourists- who were starting to realize they kinda hate each other. I was convinced it was one or the other, nothing in between. I smirked, wondering if I’d solve this mystery by the time they left, and returned to my blog post.
That’s when he said something that made my jaw drop.
“How do you feel about Chinese people?”
Ladies and gentlemen, that is a direct quote. He literally asked that. That’s when it became obvious this was a first date. Hey, if you’re racist, you outta let a gal know upfront! I ripped the headphones out of my ears- how the fuck was she going to respond to this?
She was soft-spoken with a thick European accent. I couldn’t hear her response. As disappointing as this was, it wasn’t hard to piece together the conversation, just from hearing his side.
“What don’t you like about them?” was the next thing he said. WHAT!? She had responded to his decidedly inappropriate question with an even worse response!? SERIOUSLY?! Wow. Maybe they were perfect for each other!
Again, I couldn’t hear her response, but from his response, it was obvious she said something the size of “Chinese people”. Ugh. Racist clichés!
“Everyone is small to me,” was his reply.
I couldn’t believe what I was hearing, everything he said was so appalling, it could have been lines from a “bad date” scene in a movie. He was pudgy, in a way you wouldn’t mention or care if he was a nice person, but combined with his personality make me itch to dub him FAT DOUCHEBAG. With thinning hair, beady eyes and glasses with transition lenses, he couldn’t have been better cast by Central Casting. Here’s the scene as it actually unfolded, word for word.
BAD DATE SCENE
FAT DOUCHBAG: Well, you could be my daughter.
RACIST WOMAN (utters something inaudible)
FD: You’re not wearing high heels.
RW (again, her words are inaudible)
FD: If you’re gonna put on high heels, I’m gonna put on high heels.
RW (giggles in a scornful manner, again says something we cannot hear.)
FD: I have a pair of platforms I bought from Goodwill.
FD: I’ve only worn them maybe twice. I got them for a costume.”
FD: Do you like me yet? Should I wait until tomorrow.
At this point, I almost interrupted them, “You don’t have to stay and listen to this!” I wanted to say, “Leave! Get away from him!” But it’s not like she was a young, naive 21 year old. She looked to be in her mid-30s. Still, I had sympathy for her, until I remembered she didn’t like ‘Chinese people’. Let her suffer this goon. While I watch.
The “bad date” script continued, I’ll only include the highlights.
FAT DOUCHEBAG: 100% of Latvian women I’ve met are mean to me.
Ah ha, I thought, so she’s Latvian, I thought, that’s where this accent comes from.
FAT DOUCHE: Let me take you home. To a hotel. You look like you’re falling apart.
WHAT! WHAT!? WHO SAYS THAT!? And who HEARS that and DOESN’T say, “FUCK YOU, GOOD BYE!”
She didn’t say fuck you good-bye, but she did seem completely over the date. The black hole of negative energy grew angrier and more antagonistic. He put on an impressive showing of mansplaining.
BAD DATE continued: MANSPLAINING SCENE
FAT DOUCHEBAG: Don’t say “the Germany”. Say “Germany”. Trust me.
RACIST WOMAN (inaudible but clearly annoyed)
FD: I’m just trying to help.
FD: You don’t want the help.
RW (still annoyed, still inaudible)
FD: You’re critical.
RW (scoffs, says something inaudible)
FD: I was not criticizing you!
TEXT BOOK MANSPLAINING. Ugh, it made me feel gross overhearing it.
At this point, she finally said she wanted to leave. They left together, but not before she complained about how long it had taken him to find the coffee shop. “I’m sorry for the wasted 2 minutes of your life. I owe you two minutes,” he sneered in response. As they walked out the door, he insulted her umbrella.
And then they, the douchebag and the racist, walked out of the cafe, into the night, and were gone.
The air sucked out by the black hole began to return, positivity creeped back to my section of the cafe.
A group at the table next to me winced, “Yikes, that was a bad date,” they said to each other.
I butted in, “IT WAS SO BAD! I WROTE IT ALL DOWN! I’M GOING TO BLOG ABOUT IT!”
Not only did I eavesdrop, I even snapped this picture. Ya know, for prosperity and perspective.
And an offering to the Dating Gods: PLEASE LET ME NEVER GO ON A DATE THIS BAD!