As one of those girls who was pretty much a serial monogamist, many people were shocked to find out that I’d turned to online dating. After a long-term relationship that pretty much crashed and burned once we decided to move in together, I had pretty much forgotten how to date and my options in the “real world” were pretty slim. Since we had been together for so long, a lot of our friends had become mutual friends and dating one of them would’ve been ugly. I still lived in the neighborhood that I grew up and went to high school in and, ew, I was not dipping my foot back into that pool. And that left my brother’s friends. My brother and I are close in age, but no thanks. Eventually, my one coworker and my dad (yes, my overprotective dad) convinced me to try online dating.
I typed up my profile, posted a few pics and, BAM!, inbox with messages from a variety of guys. I’m not terribly judgmental, so I gave a few guys a chance and messaged them back. Just one small piece of information before I continue: I’m tall for a girl. I’m taller than the average guy. I can date guys shorter than I am, but 5’6” is essentially my limit since I don’t like to look like I’m my date’s babysitter. Due to my height, I often checked the guy’s height before I even gave the profile a chance. One of the messages I received was from a seemingly sweet guy who was kinda cute and our conversations seemed to be going well, so I agreed to meet up with him. This guy was a manager at a gym, loved animals, and said he was close with his family. He also claimed to be 5’6”.
We decided to meet up at the mall since I wanted someplace public in case this guy tried anything weird. He texted me that he was sitting outside right as I got into the parking lot. So, I drove by where he said he was sitting to see what I was getting into before I went to park. And he was little. I don’t mean little as in he had a form of dwarfism, I mean he was at least four inches shorter than he claimed. Realizing that my not-so-subtle drive-by probably meant he saw me, I sucked it up, parked, and introduced myself.
On a scale of 1-10, the awkward level was at a 2 at this point. He essentially shook my hand and never let go. And you would think he’d have small hands that would be easy enough to hold. Awkward, but still holdable. No! They had nails bitten down the the quick and they almost looked like he had rheumatoid arthritis so it was the most awkward hand-holding experience of my life. And, like I said, he just wouldn’t let go. Let’s push that awkward level up to a 4. With the 8 inch height difference, that forced me to lean to my left side just so my arm would reach low enough as he yanked on it. I caught a glimpse of the two of us in one of the department store mirrors and we couldn’t possibly have looked more awkward. It probably didn’t help that my extreme disappointment was written all over my face. Let’s skip to awkward level 6 here.
While our texting conversations had some flow to them, our verbal conversation was non-existent, which further increased the awkward level to about a 7. Finally, we agreed that we could grab some food at the TGIFridays. I mostly agreed because sitting down meant his eyes would be at my eye level instead of my navel. We had to stand and wait a couple minutes before a table was available and he felt that it would be appropriate to put his arm around my waist. Since his arm was so small, he couldn’t really reach around to my waist unless I pulled my shoulders in and looked like one of the Peanuts characters dancing. And since there was no room to move, I was essentially stuck like that. And still no conversation!
Finally, we got seated and I noticed the local baseball game was on. So I tried my hardest to start some sort of conversation by talking about the team and the game. He had pretty much nothing to contribute. I knew at this point, I just wanted to go home, but I didn’t know how to tell him, “Hey, you’re boring and short, can we just end my misery now?” in a nice way. After we split the bill we went outside to sit since the weather was nice. We sat in continued awkward silence and he attempted the whole arm-around-me thing again. *eye roll*
Finally, I got the balls to say that I thought it was time to head out, but he somehow read that as, “I want you to come home with me,” and asked if we should go in his car or mine. This is when panic set it. OMG, not only is the guy short and boring, but he’s also stupid and creepy. Normally, I have no problem being a straight-forward biznatch, but my panicked self apparently has too many manners and can’t tell a guy to eff off. I’m not sure how I pulled it off, but I was able to get a quick text out to my mom saying, “Call me!”
My mom and I are pretty close and we actually lived only a block away from each other at this time, so she was the first person I could think of who could give me an out. Finally, my mom called, freaking out a bit, and I told Mr. Shorty Pants that I had to take this call so if he is planning on going anywhere else together, he should get in his car and drive over to mine. I reassured my mom that I was fine, but I needed an out and fast. And, as any caring and loving mom would do, she started cracking up. I saw my date driving his car ever closer to mine and figured that the best story to tell him would be that my mom cut her finger with a knife while making dinner and needed someone to drive her to the ER. I came up with this brilliant story since my mom had legit cut her finger with a paper cutter that almost needed stitches a couple days before.
The following conversation happened after breaking the news (note: this was the most detailed convo we had all night):
Me: I really gotta go get my mom and drive her to the ER. She cut her finger and might need stitches. She said she’s feeling light headed so I need to go now.
Him: Oh that sucks. Want me to go with you?
Me: Um, not really. I don’t think you want to spend the rest of your night in an ER waiting room.
Him: Oh, well I can just wait for you at her house until you get back and then we can keep hanging out.
Me: Um, no. We’ll probably be there a while since they triage small cuts as low priority. I’ll just touch base with you later.
Him: Oh. Ok.
I opened my car door and sat down in the driver’s seat. As I went to reach for the door handle to close the door, he thought that was an opportune time to lean in for a kiss. Really, it was more like I was jumped actually because I obviously wasn’t expecting it and I definitely didn’t want it. Now we’re at awkward level 10 because he’s absolutely awful at kissing and was more or less trying to eat my face.
We both drove off and I kept my eye on my mirrors to make sure he wasn’t following me anywhere. Once I determined I was safe, I drove to my mom’s to vent to her about my terrible dating experience. As she’s laughing at me, I get a text from Mr. Shitty Kisser asking if we’re done at the ER yet and if we can keep hanging out. Finally, I grew some text balls and told him that hanging out again that night wasn’t going to happen and I didn’t see things between us going anywhere.
Most guys understand what that means and then back off, but not this one! He didn’t understand and thought we both had a great time. I then had to lay it all out and tell him that we had nothing in common and had nothing to talk about, so that was the end of anything going forward with us.
After a few choice words, he finally got the picture and left me alone. I caught him stalking my profile a couple more times after that, but at least he didn’t try to reach out to me again!
–The Serial Monogamist