Saturday, March 10, 2012

Damaged Goods

I'm not sure why it has taken me so long to finally buckle down and write about the grand adventure that was speed dating - perhaps a desire to not relive it, though it's more likely that I've just been lazy busy. I mean busy.

A few weeks ago I agreed to buy a friend's ticket to speed dating. I assumed it would be horrendous, full of terrifying men, probably fairly embarrassing, and definitely hilarious. Speed dating did not fail to live up to my expectations.

Armed with the code name of "Batwoman", me & "Xena" headed to a wine bar in the city center and shuffled down the basement to meet the prospective suitors. There were 11 men and 12 women, so one of us lucky ladies always got to sit a round out. I ended up being the first one to do so, which gave me a nice four minutes to sip my wine while perusing the goods.

The event was set up for 25 - 45 y/o English speaking singles. Let it be known that some people took these rules as more of a suggestion. Or they were deluded. Either way.

Sadly, in the time since this escapade, I have lost the paper with my notes, so I cannot give you a play by play of every Superman, Thor, and Cyclops (what an awful codename!) that graced my table, but these are some of the gems I encountered...

  • two very tiny Latin men - one from Spain and one from Portugal. Trying very hard to embody the latin lover vibe, but failing somewhat spectacularly. It did  not help that one of them had a haircut that was something between Mary J. Blige and Moe from the 3 Stooges. Or possibly a medieval monk. Just not particularly attractive (though - big step up from the various mullets and rattails that have been gracing the streets of Prague recently). 
  • The aggressive New Yorker. Possibly the youngest man there, but our geographically similar roots did not help me get past the fact that this man was appallingly arrogant, and not for any particularly evident reason. 
  • Le Parisien. I hobbled together as much French as I could remember, but it's been a while and stimulating conversation was not to be had. Entirely my fault for not brushing up on my francais skills before an English speaking event. Whoops! 
  • The professor. Him: "Are you Czech?" Me: "Ne." Him: "Slovak? Hungarian? Russian?" Me: "Nie. Nincs.  нет." Him: "Are you sure? You look Russian. I've spent a lot of time there and I'm sure I've seen you." Me: "Welllllp, it's a big country, I'm pretty sure I'm not, and I've never been there. Sorry!" So then he explained why he has spent so much time in Russia, quizzed me on his nationality, and proceeded to interrupt me any time I tried to answer one of his questions with "Sopranos!" "Jersey Shore!" "Real Housewives of NJ!" Yes. We have a lot of crappy television based on NJ. I'm aware. I love it. 
  • The psychoanalyst. This Czech man was eassssssily way into his 60s, and looked a lot like Gollum. Things started out normally enough, and then we got to talking about people watching. People watching is a highly entertaining activity. There's not much that I like more than sitting somewhere, sipping coffee (or fine, wine) and scoping everyone around me out. It's fun. What is not fun? Asking these people to reveal their deepest, darkest secrets. This is what Gollum apparently likes to do for fun, and when I asked if anyone actually answered him or if they just ran away immediately (in slightly more polite terms), he said yes. Then asked me mine. I told him he'd been lied to, and that I had nothing to share. This was not an acceptable answer and he got very angry that I was not willing to tell him about the bodies stashed in my basement or my heroin addiction or my life as an underground exotic pet smuggler. It was a long four minutes.
  • The pilot. We all know I have a soft spot for pilots. Well, one particular pilot anyway. Not this pilot. This pilot was Czech (& I really do sincerely like Czech men... well, some Czech men), pushing 65, and missing an alarming number of teeth. He sat down and opened with this: "I purposely started at the table next to you so I could finish up here and be the last impression you have of speed dating." Ladies and gentlemen, there is the culprit for the reeeeeeally bitchy tone of this post. Blame Captain Cavity and his lasting impressions. 
I am truly sorry for the bitchy tone this post has taken. There were some two charming men there, but given the massive age difference in both cases, what is fine on a four minute date would probably not translate to an actual one. Because I picked no one to potentially be matched with, I get another chance for free. I think I am going to pass, and continue to find dates the old fashioned way --- drunk at a bar or hitting on my single students. Both methods have proved much more successful.  :) 

UPDATE: Perhaps this will help: Cannot determine if this is legitimate or a very elaborate internet hoax. Find Grandma's reference to her European lovers highly disturbing, and have to question who the man was who she cannot say by name but got a "little bit passionate there for a while" could possibly be.

Think instead I shall read Singled Out, which sounds like it will be a very empowering, but very sob-inducing, look into post-WWI British history & the bamf women who lived it. 

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