The last time I had a date, the kids of the dot com generation were just specks in their parents’ eyes. My love life resembled a dried out old man; cantankerous, crotchety and exuding an undefinable musty smell. People looked at me with condolement and tears brimming in their eyes. In an effort to stop the pity parties being thrown in my honor by well meaning acquaintances intent upon ignoring the disasters in their own lives, I agreed to go on some blind dates. Most, as you can imagine, would have gone better if I had poked my own eyes out. One date, though, stands out in my memory with fondness and not a little bit of stupefaction.
The meet time was set for six o’clock at night on the second concourse food court at the local mall. I dressed to impress in my pressed and creased, stove pipe, blue jeans, salmon orange golf shirt and boat shoes, sans socks. I looked hot, mostly because the air conditioning in the mall stopped working about four hours earlier and still hadn’t been fixed. While the sweat dripping from my gelled hair took away some of my swagger, I looked around with faked confidence for my date.
I spotted her easily; her eight feet, six inch height thrusting up through the after-work crowd. Her big round eyes, azure dyed hair, red beads, red shoes and strapless, lime green dress created a vision I never thought to behold in real life. I anticipated an interesting evening.
After sharing an ice cream sundae, we strolled through the stores on the first floor. She showed me her keen shoplifting techniques, introducing me to a few hand and wrist moves I hadn’t seen before. She bet me I couldn’t pocket some Twinkies™ while standing right next to a security guard. I showed her that challenge was a piece of cake. When we passed by a music and video store, she looked longingly at a picture of Ringo Starr hanging in the display case. While she tried to fend off a Hare Krishna, I snuck in the store and bought her the poster. Even though she used the rolled up poster to beat the religious devotee back to the airport, I think she appreciated my thoughtfulness.
We both enjoyed our evening together, but decided it was best not to move forward with a relationship. Even if we could have gotten past our reality differences (me being human, she being a cartoon character) she still wanted to try to make her marriage work.