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September 18, 2006

Dates from Hell

I didn't really get into the dating scene much when I was younger. In one of those strange miracles, I went from being socially retarded to meeting the woman of my dreams virtually overnight. (I remain socially retarded in the larger sense, although that's another story.) But I do have enough empathy to appreciate the difficulties of dating, especially when the other person is not just a pathetic loser but an aggressively obnoxious pathetic loser.

The Washington Post solicited stories from readers about particularly bad dates and discovered that these stories were submitted, overwhelmingly, by women. The article speculates that when men have bad dates, they don't remember them or don't want to tell about them. This is elementary. Men don't remember anything -- except, maybe, football scores and who won the American League home run title in 1982. Women remember everything. If your marriage is going to work, you've got to deal with this.

Anyway, the reports from the distaff side were pretty alarming. Can there really be so much male dreck out there? Don't answer that!

My favorite story is this:

Slap Happy

His name was David, a nominal detail for some, but an appropriate omen for me -- he was the 13th David I've dated. The first few minutes of our dinner date were fine -- good conversation, which he started to punctuate with pinky slaps, the sad little stepchild of the full-on high five. The first time he pulled the pinky slap, I thought, well, this is kind of cute. The third? Quirky. But by the seventh, it was reaching the realm of a tick, maybe Tourettes?

We pinky-slapped our way through dinner (what a great sauce on those beans -- pinky-slap; I totally see what you mean -- pinky-slap). When he finished with his meal, he was still hungry, and he noticed that the table next to us had just been vacated. Rather than order something else from the menu, he chose to finish the remnants on their plates -- chips, dip and all.

Horrified, and pinky-slapped out, I made for the door, to which he asked "Can you give me a ride home?" Needless to say, that would be a no (lack of pinky-slap noted).
-- Catherine B., Washington
You should definitely check them out and vote for your favorite in the comments. Or -- if you dare -- tell your own story.