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Date Zero With Dirty Rotten Cat Lover, Also Known As The Man Who Would Become Mr. Right-Click: Part Two

Date Zero With Dirty Rotten Cat Lover, Also Known As The Man Who Would Become Mr. Right-Click: Part Two

When we left off, the Dirty Rotten Cat Lover had just invited me to join him for dinner at the Polo Lounge. Though I teased him about his supposedly cancelled “dinner meeting” and the initial invitation for “drinks only,” I was not truly offended by the Cat Lover’s excuses. Quickly upon sitting down, he revealed that he too had been burned–as I had suspected–by the online dating industrial complex.

“I just say that,” the Cat Lover explained, “Because so many times you end up meeting someone and there’s not much chemistry, and then you have to wait through the whole dinner, and I guess I’m just tired of it now.”

“Yes, I know what you’re talking about,” I said.

“One time, I met a woman for a date, and she had brought a friend with her.”
“She brought a friend on her online date?”
“Yes. She brought her friend, and then I had to buy them both dinner.”
“Both of them?! In what universe is this a common practice?”
“–But that wasn’t as bad as when I took a woman out and after dinner the waiter came by and said, ‘Will there be anything else?’ and she said, ‘Yes, I’ll have a lobster bisque to go.'”
“She didn’t eat anything at dinner?” I asked.
“Oh, she ate dinner. She just wanted an extra lobster bisque. To take home.”
“Wow. That’s ballsy.”
“I thought so.”

I took a drink of my club soda and thought about how I hate club soda, and how I should have ordered a Diet Coke. But it was easier to deflect questions about why I wasn’t drinking alcohol if I drank something that looked like it could have alcohol in it. And who drinks club soda without there being alcohol in it? Not that the Cat Lover had even noticed my drink.

“I think we should get Kobe beef hamburgers,” the Cat Lover said, gesturing toward the menu. I thought, OK, and wondered if he had seen how much they cost.
“What about dessert?” He went on. “They have a chocolate souffle, and you have to order it before dinner. I think we should get two of those.”
“OK,” I said.

I wasn’t quite sure what this was going to be. But it was turning out to look like quite something.

And then something strange happened, the kind of thing that when it happens in a novel you think, “Well that must be an event that I’m supposed to remember.” Because otherwise, there would be no narrative purpose to this kind of thing happening. It just wouldn’t make sense, from a narratological point of view, to drop something like this into the plot unless it was to mark something as Significant . . . to make it clear to the audience that this was an Important Meeting that changed the trajectory of the rest of the story.

Because, as I sat in a booth facing the door and the bar of the Polo Lounge at the Beverly Hills Hotel, a man walked into the room, and I thought, “Wow, that guy looks A LOT like Brad Pitt,” the way you do sometimes. Except this time it wasn’t just a passing resemblance. He looked identical to Brad Pitt, but he was so small. Still, the resemblance was uncanny. Uncanny. But it couldn’t be him, could it? He was wearing a motorcycle helmet, and though he looked muscular and was probably just above average height, he just seemed . . . too damn small to be Brad Pitt.

While I was busy running these hypotheticals in my head, my face apparently looked a little something like this:

Because the Cat Lover said, “What happened? Oh my god! What’s wrong?”

“I think Brad Pitt just walked in,” I whispered. The Cat Lover turned around.
“Yeah, that’s him.”
“But he’s so small.”
“People always think celebrities look small because they’re so big on the screen,” he said.
“Where’s he going?”
“He’s sitting at the bar.”
“Who is he with? His wife?” the Cat Lover asked. This was back in the days of the Brad & Jen TruLuv4Evah publicity scheme.
“Ummm. No.”
“I dunno. Nobody.”
“Nobody recognizable. A guy and a girl.”
“You want me to go get his autograph for you?”
“Look, you’re obviously a huge fan . . . your jaw dropped like ten feet when he walked in.”
“No, I’m really not.”
“Oh, come on.”
“No, I’m really not. It’s just . . . you don’t expect to see Brad Pitt walk in somewhere.”
“Well, he’s got to eat.”

We were then interrupted by the waiter, and so the Cat Lover ordered for us. Some people don’t like that, when the man orders for the woman. Me, I love it. Any time I can avoid talking to people because my date is a gentleman, I’m all for it. Of course, the waiter still had to ask me how I would like my meat cooked, and when I answered “rare,” this apparently made quite an impression on the Dirty Rotten Cat Lover. At the time, he said, “Wow, I’ve never met a girl who likes to order their meat cooked rare.”

I began to think that anything I said or did would be A-OK with the Cat Lover, and perhaps that’s why I then told him, “Oh yeah, I used to eat handfuls of raw hamburger meat when I was a kid. My mom would always get mad at me,” which was–admittedly–both a very strange thing to do and a very strange thing to share. What I didn’t know is that in that moment the Cat Lover would decide that I was definitely the girl for him, maybe forever, all because I liked to order Kobe beef cooked rare. Yeah. Hey, people have made decisions based on less. Try not to hate.

But we should not dwell too long on the odd mating rituals of postmodern carnivores, because Brad Pitt is still seated at the bar of the Polo Lounge with two unknowns, the female of which is–WAIT, HOLD THE PHONE–IS THAT WOMAN CARESSING BRAD PITT’S THIGH?!

“What?” the Cat Lover turned around. “I think she might be caressing more than his thigh,” he decided.
“But. But.”
“Yep. And that’s definitely not Jennifer Aniston.”
“But–wait, what? Well, I always heard their marriage was just an arrangement,” I said knowingly.
“I never heard that,” he argued.
“Well, how do you explain that,” I said, gesturing to the display at the bar like it was so much trash.
“That’s Hollywood,” the Cat Lover said.

Strictly speaking, it was Beverly Hills. Still, we ate our Kobe cheeseburgers and made small talk on a variety of subjects. I don’t remember them all now, but I remember walking away from the evening thinking that it had gone much better than I had thought it would, and was impressed that the Cat Lover not only picked up the tab for the whole evening but also went the extra mile by taking my ticket, paying the valet, waiting with me for the car to show up, and opening the door to see me off. It might not seem like a huge gesture to you, but this is a Los Angeles love story, and the gestures a suitor makes in the service of making the driving experience of a Los Angeles woman easier or more comfortable translate the same way as might walking a girlfriend’s dog in Manhattan or shoveling snow in Minnesota. After he closed the door to my car, it would only take about fifteen minutes for the Cat Lover to call again–I didn’t even make it past Hollywood and Highland before my cell phone rang.

And I remember worrying that there was no way I would ever live up to be the woman that this Dirty Rotten Cat Lover seemed to think I was based on his first impression. But as it turned out, we had the rest of our lives for him to prove me wrong.

Comments (21)

  1. Feb 11, 2009

    Did you ever find out who the leg-caresser was? And you didn’t mention how the souffles were.

    But seriously, you should document Mr. RC’s date zeros here, too. He could either write them himself as guest posts, or you could interview him and then recount for us. Sort of a Date Zero Oral History project. Because it sounds like his online-dating past is as rich as yours.

    eliz´s last blog post..17 ways in which I hated “He’s Just Not That Into You”

  2. weezy
    Feb 11, 2009

    love it! even though I already know the story

  3. Feb 11, 2009

    This made me feel warm & fuzzy in the best kind of way. What a great first meeting story… Thanks for the smiles today!

    bessie.viola´s last blog post..Madeline’s Birth Story: Part One

  4. I was going to say you had me at Brad Pitt, but seriously, you had me at the Kobe hamburgers. Totally rare and happily ever after.

    foradifferentkindofgirl (fadkog)´s last blog post..‘and when I fall asleep, i don’t think i’ll survive the night (the night)’

  5. Feb 11, 2009

    That is an awesome story! thanks for sharing.

    Amy´s last blog post..GUESS WHAT?????

  6. Feb 11, 2009

    Yay!! I will say that seeing Brad Pitt on a first date does seem rather portentous, and I too LOVE my beef rare, so much so that it makes the hubby a trifle squeamish. I think I get it from my mom, who would make her own, decidedly low-rent, version of steak tartare.

    J.´s last blog post..Complaint # 37,184

  7. Feb 11, 2009

    love the inappropriate hamburger meat comment and also that it made mr. right click fall for you.

  8. Feb 11, 2009

    What a great first date story! I’d have to agree, it did make me feel all warm and fuzzy inside and I love that he was such a gentleman, I refuse to believe that chivalry is dead. I hope he still is a gentleman! I cannot wait for his guest post, I’m looking forward to it.

    Heather´s last blog post..Tea, Tarot…and Intimidation

  9. AKD
    Feb 11, 2009

    I must chime in to say that the Kobe beef moment in my relationship was almost as romantic. It happened at a baseball game, when my husband-to-be came out of the bathroom and went on a little tirade to the assembled group of co-workers about the inhumanity of peeing in a trough urinal. I laughed and seemed amused, so he thought “here’s the woman for me.” Oh, plus my big boobs, which he had noticed months before.

  10. Feb 11, 2009

    @AKD, I would have laughed at that too, but I don’t have your boobs, so your marriage is safe. 🙂

    @Heather, yes, he still is a gentleman and brings me flowers all the time, etc. But don’t tell him you’re waiting on his guest post, it will go to his head.

  11. Feb 11, 2009

    @J., I love steak tartare! There are a few places in LA that serve it, and I almost always order it when I can! I’m weird.

    @eliz, the souffles were excellent. We actually go back there periodically and always order the souffles. They have really good food actually. But no, I still don’t know who the thigh caresser was–it was not Angelina Jolie, if that’s what you’re wondering. I would have noticed her.

  12. Aimee
    Feb 12, 2009

    Ok, so my delurking brought out a story about Brad Pitt. You’ve been sitting on a story about Brad Pitt??? And not sharing??? It’s going to take a lot for me to forgive you, Anna. Like maybe the continuation of this story.

  13. Laurie
    Feb 12, 2009

    Delurking to say it was well worth the wait to read this final (?) entry in the online dating chronicles. And also, I knew it! My first impression of BP in Thelma and Louise was that he was too petite to warrant the hype.

  14. Feb 12, 2009

    @Aimee, for a while when Mr. Right-Click and I would go out, we would see some kind of celebrity every time. Of course, the last time it was the guy with the tall hair from Kid and Play, so I’m not sure a story about that run-in would be as amusing.

    A continuation of the story in the tradition of “Black Heels to Tractor Wheels”? Of course, in my case, it would be “Converse All Star low tops to . . . Converse All Star low tops.”

  15. Feb 12, 2009

    I loved reading about Date Zero with Dirty Rotten Cat Lover. I have to say, it makes the first date I had with my husband-to-be sound quite boring. To anyone else, that is!

    Ginny Marie´s last blog post..Book Nook: Rain Talk

  16. Feb 12, 2009

    What an LA story:-)

    The hotel does really great tea, too, by the way. They make a special one called Beverly Hills Blend that you can buy by the tin.

    Never been to the Polo Lounge but always wanted to go. After reading this blog entry I am going to have to definitely check it out.

    Juliet´s last blog post..Shut…and Shut…

  17. Feb 12, 2009

    Once I was with my husband (before he was my husband) and we saw Fonzi.

    So that’s not as good.

    becky´s last blog post..Neighbors at Dusk: A Play in One Act

  18. Aimee
    Feb 12, 2009

    I don’t need another 20 installments, just the next date when he went from Dirty Rotten Cat Lover to potential Mr. Right Click. But if you want to write about high-tops, that’s cool too.

  19. Feb 13, 2009

    What a great first date! You can tell it was meant to be.

    Becca´s last blog post..This is what we do for fun around here

  20. Feb 13, 2009

    Any man that will continue to be fascinated by you AFTER you have told him you eat handfuls of raw hamburger is a total keeper.

    I like my steak rare too. Anything else ruins a perfectly good piece of meat.

    Tracy Lynn´s last blog post..And Then He Fell Like A Flan In A Cupboard

  21. Jaxx
    Mar 5, 2010

    Loved the story. And the Brad Pitt part. I always thought he was at least 6 feet tall. I’ve seen a couple of stars and was shocked at how small they were. But Pitt? Really thought he was a big guy. Wow. Tom Cruise must be able to sleep in a thimble. Because he does seem small even on screen so in real life? Must be Scary Small. I once stood right next to Mikhail Baryshnikov and he was so teeny tiny I was shocked he could actually lift a grown woman into the air. They must have had him standing on three boxes to kiss SJP in Sex and the City.

    Mr. RC sounds adorable so be really good to him and vice versa so you guys can always live HEA.

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