Monday, June 22, 2009

A long blog post about dating

I have some dating rules, as you know. One I don't think I've mentioned before is "no arguing on the first date, unless absolutely necessary." I recently went on a first date where this rule was tested. The guy I was out with made some statements of his opinions that I found more than just a little shocking. Now, I should be clear that I don't think he was trying to argue with me. In fact, I think he just assumed I would agree with what he said.

Instead of arguing with him, I just changed the subject as delicately as I could. The next week, I reported to Ann and Kathy about the date. When I told them some of the things he said, their jaws dropped and they said, "What did you say to that!?" When I told them about my rule, they looked at me like I was crazy. But my theory is that it there's no point arguing on a first date unless, as previously stated, it is absolutely necessary. For example, if the guy says something that insults your core beliefs. In this case, his statements were politically based. And while I strongly disagreed with him, I knew that there was no point getting into it and that neither of us would change our opinion.

There was a time though, years ago, when I got into quite a fight on a first date. Do you want to hear about it? If you do, read on. If not, boooring! Here we go.

Now, this wasn't a typical first date. I don't even know if this could technically be considered a date, but I'm going to tell the story anyway. This story is about a guy named..let's say... Rob (changing his name for obvious reasons). Rob moved to the area for a summer job and we casually got to know each other. He flirted with me, I thought he was attractive, and after talking several times, he asked me if I'd like to meet up with some of his friends and go camping.

I thought it sounded like fun and I wanted to get to know him better so I agreed. So the next weekend we headed off for what would be one of the worst weekends of my life.

We had a nice enough drive to where we were camping (three hours away), and when we pulled up to the campsite, a whole bunch of people came up to meet us. It was dark so I couldn't see them at first, but as my eyes focused and I heard the giggles, I realized they were all girls, and they were all thrilled to see Rob. And less than thrilled to see me. They put their flashlights in my faces and asked in unfriendly tones, "who are you?" Then crowded around Rob and pretended I wasn't there.

We put our stuff down and went to the campfire, where the girls rushed to sit on either side of him. I should mention, there were guys there too but Rob didn't know any of them.

I introduced myself to some of the people and tried to make the best of the situation, but the whole time I was thinking, "why did he invite me here if he was coming to see these girls?" As the night went on, my rage increased. I eventually went off to my tent and tried to get some sleep. The next morning he greeted me as if nothing weird had happened and I decided
to just power through - we were going home later that day and I hoped today would go better than the night before. We ate breakfast, then we all headed off to go canoeing.

When we got to the canoes and were choosing partners, a couple of the more carnivorous girls from the night before grabbed Rob and took him to their canoe. I could not believe that he would make me go in a canoe with strangers, but that's exactly what happened. You can imagine my fury at this point but I was too shocked to say anything to him at the time. Plus, I knew that considering how mad I was, there would most definitely be a scene.

When the canoeing excursion was over, Rob and I went back to his car. Once in his car, I let him have it. The funny thing is, he was totally caught off guard. He had no idea that I would be mad that he had invited me on a camping trip filled with women who loved him and hated me. We got in a huge fight, then had the most awkward three-hour drive home of my life.

And I never spoke to him again.

Anyone got a better story? Anyone gotten into a fight on a first date?


Kathy said...

I think you may have a little more self control than me. I probably would have found the keys to "Rob's" car and left him to enjoy his weekend with the ladies. OR, I would have found a way to tip the canoe he was in. But that could just be the Korean temper I inherited from my mom. :)-

Sarah said...

Well, I voted "no," but only because if I find myself wanting to really argue with someone (not just a friendly spat, I'm talking huge disagreement), then I figure it's not going to go beyond a first date anyhow, so no sense getting all riled up over it.

And, you've heard some of my dating stories, so I'll just review my worst first date of the past few years. It was with the volunteer fire-fighter who had invited me to dinner, then I showed up to find out he already ate dinner. Uh, ok, so during our conversation, we agreed on nothing (but I didn't argue with his point of view...I knew this wasn't going anywhere). We started a movie to dial-down the awkwardness, but then he ordered himself a pizza (yep, that really happened), and then quickly abandoned it and me to go fight a fire without any explanation or good-bye. I stood there in total disbelief!! Wish I had the thought to at least take something memorable from his house after he left me there alone!! :) Like the movie...I really liked it and still never saw the rest of it!

Dallan said...

That is a delightful story, on several levels. "Carnivorous" - HA!

Christi said...

Do I know who Rob is? And I love the phrase 'carnivorous girls'!
Anyway, as far as arguing on a first date, playful arguing is fine, but if you really have that big of a problem with someone that early on, what's the point in arguing? You'll most likely never see them again. I am interested to hear about what this guy said...

Chris Willie said...

I voted "depends." I say yes to arguing, but only if you have the means of making an appropriately dramatic exit if it should become necessary. Tossing a glass of water in his face, violently spiking your wadded-up napkin on the table, and storming out of the restaurant loses some of its victoriousness if you then have to wait out at his car for him to come drive you home.

Katherine said...

Ahhhh, I remember that date. Good times! Kidding, kidding. I agree with what Chris and others have said. If nothing's gonna happen and you know it, I say let things drop. Unless you can make a triumphant exit, of course. As far as bad date stories, I just avoid dating in general, so I don't have much to share. Or maybe I'd just rather not remember.

opticwalrus said...

That reminds me of the Chinese film "Raise the Red Lantern," where a rich man brings home a fourth wife and the other three wives despise and shun her, and they all compete for his attention and play mind games with each other.

Angela Annjilla Ferny Fern said...

So much anxiety welled up within me while reading this. Would I remember 'rob'? I don't capitalize his name since he doesn't deserve it. I may have better stories somwhere in the recesses of my mind. And Yes I've been on several first dates that ended in fights.

Emily said...

How have I never heard this story before? Rob sounds like a total lame-o. I'm glad you let him have it.

Jess said...

I can't top it but I am sure Dave Pate could:)