June 3, 2004, 8:00 p.m., The Urth Caffe, West Hollywood.
Let me tell you about a dating experience that goes well beyond the usual DZasters to which I have submitted myself of late.
First of all, planning anything with ShortAsshole is extremely difficult because he is very busy, you see, “building [his] practice” and doesn’t have time for dinner or any of the other pedestrian pursuits of mere mortals not working in the entertainment law practice. He could only commit to coffee, and though I never consider it a good sign when a guy suggests a coffee date, I agreed to go and was there on time and properly coiffed. ShortAsshole might be attractive, but I would have had to bend down to confirm this since he was at least two inches shorter than his profile indicated. Let’s put it this way–if he is 5’8, then I must be 5’9, since with 1″ heels on I had a clear view of the top of his head.
Like ShortAsshole himself, the Urth Caffe is all caught up with itself and The Scene. Upon arrival there, I immediately I discern that ShortAsshole is in a bad mood. For the rest of the god awful 1 hour I am with him, I feel an immense pressure to keep the conversation on light and enjoyable topics.
Me! Light and enjoyable topics?!?!
Oh yes, ShortAsshole is distracted and self-obsessed. So much so that I found myself feeding into his whole aura–I even went so far as to ask him if he had a bad day (mistake), as if I care. I then had to hear about it for a while, and I indulge him for inexplicable reasons. But he does not lighten up.
He will not lighten up.
Now, we all know that I am a cynic, and even I was overwhelmed by the negative energy coming off this guy. I mean, it was unbelievable. I felt worse about life just from being around him.
During the course of the conversation, he managed to insult me (albeit somewhat indirectly) at least three times:
- he said that I looked like I belonged in a different geographical area, so I’m thinking, probably he means scandanavia? or Holland?–he says, SANTA CRUZ. SANTA CRUZ!!!;
- when I asked him about his being a law professor, he said, “oh no, luh-oozer,”–because of course, all professors are losers (granted, I don’t aspire to be a law professor, but this is hair-splitting, really); and
- he asked what kind of law my parents practice, and I answer “family law.” His response? “How glamorous.”
So, at about 10 pm, I had had enough. I am not the best at transitions, but I felt it was time to go. So I say, “Well, I should go home. I have to get up early.” He looks outraged, although he is out of his seat in about 1/2 second. I said, “I’m sorry, that wasn’t a good transition, was it?” and he says, “uh, no.” I say, “I’m sorry,” he cuts me off, saying “Thanks, it was memorable,” we start to walk out and he keeps walking faster, so that he is now a block ahead of me, doesn’t even say goodbye or any bullshit niceties, leaves me to walk to my car alone, which isn’t a big deal but NO GOODBYE?! Does Berkeley not teach its graduates basic etiquette?
Having freed myself from the death grip of ShortAsshole, I am thrilled to see a dog on the sidewalk leading to my car. I reach down to pet it, and it growls and snarls, and then tries to bite me. What the fuck.
To sum up, ShortAsshole is not merely the bore I had worried he might be, he is also negative, and MEAN. Like scary short man big truck lawyer angry MEAN. I felt I needed to go home and wash his influence off of me.
At one point during the evening, I felt like saying, “Am I being punk’d?” But alas, the date was real, though it didn’t last long, and I will live to date another day.
Epilogue: Unsurprisingly, ShortAsshole and I were never to meet again. Years later, the Urth Caffe was featured in an episode of “Entourage,” which prompted a mild episode of PTSD for me. Online dating lesson learned: to be safe, always plan for the worst case scenario (i.e. subtract two inches off a man’s height as reported on dating profiles, and be very, very wary of the coffee date).