Wednesday, August 6, 2008

The Date From Hell

Dating blogs are a dime a dozen and are mostly if not wholly pedestrian at best. But I think I have enough angle on this yarn to warrant a post.

(All pseudonyms, obviously)

There’s this chick called Spinach who we met at band gigs – she was one of our most dedicated fans. Over the years we became quite friendly with her, so much so that these days she’s considered a ‘fifth Beatle’ of the band. She organises our myspaz site, does our merchandising, is our photographer and so on. She’s the nearest thing we have to a manager. Through Spinach we met her little brother Biff, who is now actually in our band. Then, being that our manager and a band member are of the same family, we got to know their extended family quite well, including their parents and their rather beautiful older sister Artemis, who is 25 years old.

When I first met Artemis more than a year ago I was smitten, but she had a boyfriend so, you know, whatever. That, and I’m too old for her anyway, but I can always fantasise. When she became single, the most handsome member of my band, Scrapper, made a move on her but failed and I thought at the time, “Well if Scrapper can’t pick her up, I’ve definitely got no hope.” She got a new boyfriend anyway. Girls like her don;t have to wait long.

But about three months ago she became single again and I spoke to Spinach and I said, “I’m thinking of asking your older sister Artemis out. What’s your advice?” and she said, “Absolutely not, no way, you have no chance.”

I let it go.

But then two days ago I came into possession of a spare ticket to The Breeders concert. I thought, “Right, I’m going to put this ‘man the fuck’ up business into action. I’m 14 years older than her, she’s stunningly beautiful, her little sister said I had no chance but I’m going to be a man and ask her anyway.”

The phone conversation went like this (edited, but facts true):

Me: “What are you doing tomorrow night?”
Artemis: “Going to a MIFF film with a friend.”
Me: “Oh, I was going to ask you on a date to The Breeders concert.”
Artemis: “I’ve never heard of them.”
Me: “90’s rock band, spinoff of Pixies. They’re good, but oh well.”
Artemis: “I’m so flattered you asked though so I’m going to say yes. What I’ll do is, go out for dinner with my friend anyway, and then go to the concert with you. Wow, I’m really flattered.”
Me: “Are you kidding? I’m more flattered that you said yes!”

I was ecstatic. Oh I had manned the fuck up alright. Straight after, I chopped wood, ate my steak rare and then looked for broken down cars to fix.

Last night, I met up with Artemis at the pub where she was having dinner with the friend that she had dumped. The friend was nice, and laughed saying, “Oh, so you’re the guy she’s dumped me for.”

Then they said, “We were talking, and we’re thinking that if it’s okay with you, we’d like to come down and stay at your seaside cottage for a weekend at the end of the month. Care for some visitors?”

“Sure!” I said, now totally pumped because not only did I get the date, she had now booked in a weekend visit to my house!

“I have a good feeling about this,” I thought, and I was as happy as I’ve been in ages.

But ten minutes later, this happened (unedited):

Artemis: “Oh by the way, when we come down, we’re both vegetarians, is that okay?”
Me: “Of course. I used to be a vegetarian myself so I’m all cool with vegetarian cuisine. Vegans are harder to deal with.”
Artemis: “Oh I know, Josh is a vegan and it’s really difficult at times.”
Me: “Who’s Josh?”
Artemis: “My boyfriend.”
Me: “..............”
Artemis: “Yeah, he’s only been vegan for a short while. He’s seeing how it goes.”
Me: “.............”
Artemis: “I hope he gives up, personally. How can anyone live without cheese?”
Me: “..............”
Artemis: “Are you okay Perseus? You look suddenly pale.”
Me: “................”
Artemis: “Perseus?”
Me: “................”
Artemis: “Perseus?
Me: “..................”
Artemis: “Perseus?”
Me: “..................”

68 comments:

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Oh, Perseus I am sorry.

Really.

So.

Are they still coming down to sat with you?

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Um.

I mean "stay".

squib said...

Maybe she saw you as an uncle figure, Persey?

heehee

Perseus said...

Ramon - at this stage, yes, but my evil plan is to wait until the day before and then pretend the house has burnt down or something.

Squib - Get fucked. I love you, but get fucked. But I still love you.

Trinity is not my name said...

ya poor cookie
surely actual revenge is called for though? lure them there and then ... i don't know ... give them a lice infested towel or something on their last day

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Scene: Perseus' sea-side cottage.

The last day

Artemis: "Perseus, have you seen Josh, I can't find him anywhere?'

Perseus: "Um, yes. He said he hated you and then he left."

Artemis: "My God! I can't believe it! Any why were you using the chainsaw so late last night?"

Perseus: "Oh, just getting rid of some old rubbish.

"So.

"Fancy a beer?"

Perseus said...

I'm too flabbergasted to consider any real revenge. I mean, this shit should only happen in movies.

In the interests of accurate blogging, I should point out that later in the night she did refer to him as the guy she was 'sort of seeing' - so he was linguistically demoted in the space of a couple of hours, and then even later, drunk, she told me that it wasn't 'going too well' with him and she doesn't think it will last.

But that's not the point. It was a date, she knew it was a date, and should not have said yes.

squib said...

Later

Artemis: What are these bits in the soup? It's not meat is it?

Perseus: Just burnt split peas

Perseus said...

Ramon - it's not Josh she's bringing with her, it's her best friend Apple. If she was suggesting bringing Josh I would tell her to get fucked.

Or yes, chainsaw him into little pieces. Bloody vegans. Who needs 'em anyway?

Puss In Boots said...

I'm with you on this one, Perseus. It was very rude of her to accept what she knew you thought was a date when she had a boyfriend. At the very least, she should have told you on the phone so you could retract your invitation.

But if she's told you she's only sort of seeing him and doesn't think it's going well, she might also have thought enough of you to go on this date and see if you were worth leaving Josh for. Which could be a good thing!

catlick said...

Perseus she has what I call "young" manners. The bf sounds transitional/trial. It is possible she is using him as a "safety" to visit you (use your house) and check things/you out. However, that's what girlfriends used to be for. It could be a chance for you to show her what she's missing. I'd get some great vegan busting food in. I'd be yourself. Nothing else is sustainable. Nothing else is real. How many beds? Invite cool friends. Show her what she's missing.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Or get catlick to come down on the same day.

She can get all smoochy, lovey-dovey with you, thus making Artemis mad with envy and desire.

Well, it worked in late 1970s sit-coms.

Melba said...

i wouldn't let that put you off (her not mentioning "bf"). but learn the chainsaw. opportunity to impress, it's very manly to use a chainsaw. very.

Boogeyman said...

OTOH, perhaps she is planning on bringing 5 of her really hott girlfriends to your house, with lots of wine and fondue, to get over her soon-to-be recent breakup with Josh.

Chainsaws can be manly or creepy. I'd lean towards keeping it hidden.

patchouligirl said...

I agree totally with catlick. And looking at the facts: 1 she said yes to go out with you and 2 she wants to check out your place I reckon she's interested for sure. Mentioning veg b/f? Tactless but maybe she wanted to guage your reaction. Maybe she isn't sure where you are coming from. I'm a bit old I suppose to give advice on how to clarify that but a bunch of flowers always worked for me.

Perseus said...

Or maybe Squib's half right, and she considers me 'family' and therefore it's perfectly acceptable in her mind to agree to go out to a rock concert with me.

But I did say the word 'date'.

Still, I'll take your advice and see what happens on that weekend.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

And if it all goes pear-shaped, you've still got Imaginary Julia Gillard to fall back on.

Perseus said...

No, Imaginary Julia Gillard isn't talking to me right now because I went on the date with Artemis.

When I got home she was standing on the balustrade, sneering.

I'm on the couch tonight.

Boogeyman said...

Imaginary Julia needs to woman the fuck up and realise that Perseus is too much man for one woman to handle.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Imaginary girlfriends, eh!

catlick said...

Oh! Oh, maybe she was all PM, (post mod, not pre men,) with "so, that's a date, (not a "date") I agree with patchouligirl, because she agrees with me.
About flowers, recently I arrived at the 'intended's' house, (second interview); good red, and very good half bottle of sticky in hand, and also bearing a spray of yellow iris, beautifully wrapped. I was relieved of my grog, and, told "I don't do flowers". (she is so dropped)

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

I don't understand why nobody is going with my brilliant strategy.

Boogeyman said...

So Perseus, how does Artemis feel about you giving her the name of an eternally chaste virgin goddess?

Way to jinx your chances there, big time.

catlick said...

And Ramon, thank you for sketching out yet another fanciful wasted weekend for me. I'm managing to do that well enough myself.

Perseus said...

I chose Artemis because of the story of Actaeon, the hunter who saw her naked and then got turned into a wolf as punishment and was eaten by his own hounds. Which is the sort of thing that happens to me.

Catlick - you're dumping her because she doesn't do flowers? I don't think that's grounds enough.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Actaeon was turned into a deer.

catlick said...

Perseus, I'm dumping her because in the face of flowers, you say "thankyou" or, if you're an ex diplomat's wife, "how lovely". Then, at a later stage, you shape up the behaviour. Oh, there were other "issues". In addition to the poor manners, she was the worst cook I have ever encountered. She made a cardboard omelette that I had to surreptitiously feed to the dogs,she liked French House music, and sexually, she was the proverbial one trick pony. I deserve better I tells ya!

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

she was the worst cook I have ever encountered

See, this is why I made my recipe for chicken stuffing available to the world - to prevent this sort of cuisine-related breakup.

I can't do anything about the French house music. Nobody can.

catlick said...

On an unrelated matter, I predict the 08 games will be a shemozzle. I apologise for the hijacking. Just want to be on the record.

patchouligirl said...

Anyway, just because a woman says something off putting doesnt mean its over. The first time I met my husband I told him I liked tall men (he's 5'6" and I'm 5'7"). I really didn't think he would be interested in me anyway, I thought he'd want some petite little thing. Fortunately he ignored what I said and sent me flowers anyway. Later he said "we're the same height in bed" and I never really thought about it again.

wari lasi said...

Perseus mate. Women and trains as they say, "There'll be another one along soon"

I'd been in intense counselling after a lady I'd hankered after for years finally broke up with her guy. It was last October, so it wasn't like I just moved in on the rebound. Anyway, I got with her at Easter, we had a brief intense affair, and then she got back with her ex. Broke my heart.

At least she didn't sleep with you, so then you fall tragically in love with her, and then she dropped you on your head.

The only upside for me is that I saw her on the weekend at a wedding and she was on her own. Seems the reconciliation with the ex didn't work out. And she stayed with me on Saturday night.

It's a mess. God help us all in the field of romance.

Cranky Frank said...

Perseus, go with plan B. Impress the hell out of her while she's at your place, shove Josh to one side and re-introduce her to a meat diet before the weekend is out.

Perseus said...

Floppy vegan Josh isn't coming down to my house. It's Artemis and her friend Apple that are coming down. I have to hope she's dumped him by then.

Or I should just get rid of her and date someone else.

I wish I was a eunuch.

Wari - I disagree. "Better to have shagged and lost than etc. etc."

Melba said...

i've been thinking about this tonight and now i think that she was quite rude to invite herself and her friend down to your place.

i know you said she had young manners but i don't think that's on.

Perseus said...

I have no issue with that Melba. I'm a friend of the family.

And she's a nice chick, and she did everything else right, including texting me last night to say thank you and then emailing again this morning to thank me again and all of that.

Leilani said...

Sorry Perseus, let me the girl-whisperer here - she's just not that into you.

Mentioning the semi-boyfriend is the dating exit-strategy.

catlick said...

"Perseus mate. Women and trains as they say, "There'll be another one along soon"

Wari lasi, would you please shoot me a copy of the timetable?

Cranky Frank said...

Sorry, P. I meant push Josh aside metaphorically.

wari lasi said...

Wari lasi, would you please shoot me a copy of the timetable?

Alas Catlick, you will have noticed that I then went on to contradict myself entirely. It's just tough talk. I remain completely under this lady's spell and am not really interested in anyone else at this stage. But then again, I have a mind-blowingly complicated personal life.

Speaking of which, Perseus, do you have any children? Doing the math seems to put you at late 30's.

And as for "Better to have shagged and lost etc". I have to disagree. I've now got all the weird jealousy stuff happening. I wonder who she's with right now. Every time my phone makes the message sound I want it to be her. I'm disappointed when "send/receive complete" doesn't include an email from her. Assuming she really doesn't want anything long term with me, she did me more emotional damage by sleeping with me.

I ask about the kids thing because it helps keep me sane through this type of stuff. I can only indulge myself to the degree that it doesn't affect the 7 year old who lives with me. I have to "put on a happy face" as it were. And I'm in Brisbane to celebrate my eldest daughter's 16th on Friday. Distractions are nice at times like this.

I have to agree with the comments about how young Artemis is though. It has a lot to do with the way she's behaved. But you say she's texting and emailing you. She's maybe thinking, "I really like him, but he's sooo much older than me." Who the fuck knows?

wari lasi said...

Sorry about the long post.

Puss In Boots said...

Catlick - you're dumping her because she doesn't do flowers? I don't think that's grounds enough.

I don't know about that. I once dumped someone for the way they held their spoon (like a bloody 2 year old - in a fist!), and then another guy because he bought a greasy chicken to my house (his idea of a dinner date - I was vegetarian) and then proceeded to decline my offer of a plate, knife and fork and sat at my coffee table eating it with his fingers. I've also dumped a guy because he bought a 4wd.

All valid reasons, I thought!

wari lasi said...

I've also dumped a guy because he bought a 4wd.

Well that's us over with I'm afraid Puss. I drive a Land Cruiser. In fact even here I'm driving Mrs L's Murano. Hey, I paid for the bloody thing. I can't see that's valid grounds for dumping.

I'm with you on the spoon thing though, and the chook.

catlick said...

Artemis: "My God! I can't believe it! Any why were you using the chainsaw so late last night?"

I still don't think you can go past a wood chipper. a la 'Fargo'

Perseus said...

"She's maybe thinking, "I really like him, but he's sooo much older than me."

I believe that is exactly what is happening.

I don't think it's Leilani's 'she's just not into you' theory because I can just tell that's not the case. You know... you can tell these things.

And no, I don't have kids. I want kids though. I'm getting very clucky.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

I want kids though

Do you want mine?

Perseus said...

But haven't you already got the boy up for ALP pre-selection at the next state election?

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Oh yeah.

Good point.

Would you like my savage and not very friendly cat instead?

wari lasi said...

Ah Ramon. Me thinks The Boy is going nowhere.

They're expensive gadgets to run though.

And Perseus, just do it differently to me. Mine are 18, 16 (nearly!) and 7 (just). The 7 yr old girl I have sole custody of in PNG. I'll refrain from gushing, if you want that shit go to Essential Baby, but it's true that at times of emotional upheaval they limit the extent to which you can indulge in self pity. They keep you on track as it were.

I'd just keep waving yourself in front of Artemis (subtly) and she may come around. At least you don't have a semi trailer load of baggage like I do.

catlick said...

There is a clear rule in relation to this Perseus. Intergenerational paedophilia is by the numbers. If you are reasonably biologically able to have fathered a child of her age then it's creepy/wrong/bad/bad, and you will know it in your heart. Prima facie you're ok here.
However, at 14 years difference, her youth comes into play. The closer her age is to the difference between you, the dodgier it gets.
If she decides she wants you, she will hunt you down. If she's not sure the family friendships and history will give her the security to investigate. It's in the lap of the gods.

patchouligirl said...

I've also dumped a guy because he bought a 4wd You know, you can change some things about a person but not others. Their values. Whether they are a hard worker. Whether they are honest. Mr/Mrs Right may not come with the packaging you expect. When you find someone who loves you completely, with your faults, you have to accept theirs. I dont care if they eat chicken with their feet or shove a spoon up their nose as long as I know I am not being lied to or used.

Perseus said...

In some Islamic communities, when the male decides he is ready to marry, it is customary to seek a wife who is half his age plus seven. Apparently, this is the most successful formula.

On that rationale, I should be trying to pick up a 26 or 27 year old.

I don't know any, so 25 is close enough.

She just texted me to see if I slept well last night. This behaviour is keeping me strung along.

Ramon - no thanks, my cat is equally anti-social. It would be a bloodbath.

Has your boy met Lindsay Tanner yet?

patchouligirl said...

The closer her age is to the difference between you, the dodgier it gets sorry for the double post but bollocks. Age doesn't matter. My grandmother was 18 when she married my grandfather 39. They had a great marriage and lived happily ever after.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Has your boy met Lindsay Tanner yet?

No, but every time we walk past Martin Ferguson's office he points and says "That is Kevin07. He is our good friend".

wari lasi said...

That is Kevin07. He is our good friend

I sincerely hope you're not brainwashing The Boy Ramon. But I suppose that's the Marxist/Leninist way.

I'm calling DOCS.

catlick said...

The closer her age is to the difference between you, the dodgier it gets sorry for the double post but bollocks. Age doesn't matter. My grandmother was 18 when she married my grandfather 39. They had a great marriage and lived happily ever after.

I should have said the dodgier it 'seems' with a nod to all the May December romances, (cue Julie London ) and the qualifier that I was talking of external judgements rather than the intrinsic worth and viability of the relationship.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

But I suppose that's the Marxist/Leninist way.

You know it, comrade.

Boogeyman said...

She just texted me to see if I slept well last night.

I think she's interested in you, but she mentioned the bf to slow you down a bit while she susses you out.

Anyway, half your luck to be dating anyone at all.

wari lasi said...

Ok Boogey. Now it's your turn to be pathetic.

Puss In Boots said...

You know, you can change some things about a person but not others. Their values. Whether they are a hard worker. Whether they are honest. Mr/Mrs Right may not come with the packaging you expect. When you find someone who loves you completely, with your faults, you have to accept theirs. I dont care if they eat chicken with their feet or shove a spoon up their nose as long as I know I am not being lied to or used.

Two things: I don't believe in changing anyone; I would prefer someone who didn't lie to me or use me AND didn't shove spoons up their nose or eat chicken with their feet. Call me fussy. If someone is not perfect for me exactly as they are, then I'm not interested. I'd rather die a spinster than settle for second best. That's just how I am. I am easily irritated, and if someone is irritating me on the first or second date, it's only going to compound from there. Better to fuck them off early so I don't waste my time, and so I can find someone more suitable. I made the choice about 4 years ago that if I didn't see a long term future with someone, there was no point dating them. If someone is irritating me that early on, there's not going to be a long term future. I must have dated hundreds of guys and dumped them all for what some would call superficial reasons, but my tactic paid off. My current partner is perfect for me and hasn't ever irritated me. Which, if you knew me in real life, is a very big call.

I don't think anyone should ever enter a relationship thinking, "Oh but they're so nice and they love me - now if I could just change those 12 things I don't like about them..." Doesn't work like that for me. I don't want to have to change someone.

Accepting someone despite their flaws is totally different. That means their flaws don't bother you to start with. I'm sure my partner has what other people would call flaws, but they're not to me, so that doesn't count. Clutching a spoon in your fist and eating like a 2 year old is a flaw. Eating a greasy chicken with your fingers in my lounge room is a flaw. Driving a 4wd in the city where you have no reason to be 4wd-ing is a flaw. To me, anyway. And I didn't want to date anyone with what I would consider flaws.

Boogeyman said...

Well, it depends on what flaws you see as significant and what minor. Clearly Puss sees improper use of cutlery and silverware, or eating chicken with fingers, as indicative of deep character flaws.


Ok Boogey. Now it's your turn to be pathetic.

Thanks for the offer, wari, but I think I'd bore you silly with my tale of love and loss.

Perseus said...

Tell it anyway Boogey because it may help me feel better about myself.

wari lasi said...

Bore away boogey. I'll feel less guilty about pouring my heart out. It's good therapy.

Nice day today here by the way. I've got to go to Kawana Waters (where the fuck is that?) on Saturday to see the girl row.

catlick said...

Puss has a point. And as well as the 'flaws' I find the 'quirks' eventually grate.

wari lasi said...

I was telling someone this at the wedding I went to on the weekend.

Men marry women thinking they won't change and they do. Women marry men thinking they will change and they don't.

I don't know where I heard that, but it's true. Puss' flaws may be another woman's foibles. Love conquers all, Puss' man is probabaly just as flaw ridden as the rest of us (well proably less than me), she just doesn't see them.

squib said...

My husband is 16 years older than me and this has never been an issue for me. I think the age difference would only be a problem if you started doing old-man stuff like golf and you stopped listening to new music

Perseus said...

No fear of that. Golf is a good walk ruined.

And I'm in punk band (though punk is arguably 'old' now).

squib said...

This happened to me last year. Someone was telling me they were in a punk band and I said oh were you the singer? And he said, no I was bass. And I said, oh like double bass?

catlick said...

'Cos he's got the nose and the TAC neck brace for it.