Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Which, of course, is tantamount to saying Al Gore introduced us

What many of you don't know is that I met Nick on the Internets.

And I realize this photo makes you want to rush out and sign up on one of those dating sites right now.

(Incidentally, we resisted the temptation to take photos of random Turkish tourists posing in the same inane way.)


By the time we met, as you do know, I'd been on approximately 794 gazillion dates. Some good, some bad, and until Nick all ultimately winding up with me girding myself for yet another first date.

So last week, we met at the Tabard to celebrate our anniversary.

When I arrived, he was sitting on the same couch as the year prior. This time he was holding a lovely pink and white bouquet of Stargazers; this time I was carrying my little black Dansko commuting clogs in a CVS bag.

After kissing me hello, the first thing he said was, "Don't look now, but the woman sitting at one o'clock has been waiting for her date for a while."

Don't look now? How can you ever not look when someone says that?

Because I have trouble translating a clock into a room, I went around the dial, woman by woman, annoying my husband, until finally arriving at the correct person.

It turned out that while Nick was waiting, this blonde kept looking at him like maybe she knew him. And then he started to wonder if she was an old girlfriend who he hadn't seen in years. She looked like she could be.

So he said, "Carrie?" at the same time she said, "Chris?"

She was waiting for a date. And apparently, instead of saying he mistook her for someone else, Nick got all flustered and was all, "Oh! No! Waiting! I'm waiting! For! My wife! I have a wife!" and flailed around with his flowers, brandishing his wedding band.

I'm sure this wasn't at all awkward.

So we sat on the couch, acutely aware that this woman 10 feet away was waiting for her date.

I am sure the fact that she knew we knew made it all the more awkward. And then Nick kept glancing over, and checking the door all, "Where is he?"

"Stop looking. You're just going to make her feel bad."

You know, it was so close to home for both of us. We had both been her. Although neither of us had been stood up, we'd both been that waiting person over and over and over. At some point in my dating career I decided that the men who were late to first dates were not actually worth waiting for. They always turned out to be rude about other things.

So we were chatting about her but trying not to look. Or anyway, trying not to be obvious.

She checked her phone, left the room - to make a call? to take a call? - then came back and sat down.

Nick whispered, "Where is he? What's wrong with that asshole?"

"I don't know. He's probably a douche anyway."

Nick and Lisa, spending a romantic evening maligning some probably perfectly nice man we'd never seen. Because of a woman we hadn't actually met.

She probably waited about 20 minutes from the time I got there. And then she gathered her things and left.

Did Chris stand her up? Did he cancel? Had she gotten a message when she checked her phone? Or did she just get tired of waiting?

It felt, in an odd little way, like a personal loss.


  1. From one of those waiting women, thank you. ;-)

  2. I hate Chris! What a shmuck.

  3. Stacy - You know, for me it's so recent I still feel it.

    lacochran - Of course, he might have gotten hit by a bus on the way there or something.

  4. Oh no! Certainly Chris sent a message. "Hit by bus, in ER and okay. Are you free next week?"

    Waiting on people is the worst, my mind races and I worry something bad has happened if someone is 5 seconds late.

    The photo of Nick is priceless.

  5. You're right. Or "dog chewed off one hand, will text more soon" - or something along those lines.

    I am not perfectly punctual, so I give people leeway, but I *hate* being the first person when meeting at a bar. I hate and waiting alone in a bar.

  6. It's so easy to say, if he's the kind of guy who would be late/stand a girl up, you didn't want to know him anyway...

    harder to believe when you're the one sitting there waiting.

  7. LiLu, not only is it easy to say that a date who stands you up isn't worth knowing, it has the added advantage of being true in my mind.

    Lisa, I had a similar experience at one of my locals once. A woman walked in and kept looking at me. Eventually she walked over and said "are you Chris (just using his name again because it is easier)?" Naturally I was not. Naturally Chris eventually showed. Naturally Chris was as charming as the kind of guy who puts his chewed gum under the bar - yes I saw him do that while she was in the washcloset. Thankfully for her, it ended before not too long. As she was finishing her drink, I made a joke about having "been there too." Thankfully for another regular who arrived not long after, the two of them hit it off and have been dating for about a year now.

  8. I can only hope Carrie reads this. Stranger things have happened....

  9. good to know there are people out there sympathizing when that happens, not pointing and laughing!

  10. A couple of weeks ago, I had a first date who was 45 (!!!) minutes late! When I got to the place, he hadn't even left his house yet, and decide to inform that to me then!

    At 8:30, I gave up on waiting, and was going to text him, then a friend called, and while chatting with her (it was a long conversation), he showed up.

    It was his first online date, he had said, and his opening line? "I bet you never had a first online date that was 45 minutes late"

    My reply? "I never had a date EVER that was 45 minutes late"

    Needless to say, our date lasted less than an hour and we never contacted each other again. The worst? He was VERY photogenic, so didn't look nearly as good in person...

  11. aww man, that's awful. you guys should have bought her a shot... i'll bet she needed one.

  12. 20 minutes? I would have been halfway into my second jack & coke, trying to drink away my nervousness.

    Chris is a douche.

  13. It is nice to know that there are people sympathizing...what a schmuck. I swear, like it's so freaking hard to place a phone call or send a text saying, 'sorry, can't make it'?

  14. LiLu - I know. Everything is easy to say when you're not the person in it.

    RestaurantRefugee - That's a good story with a happy ending. I like that. Gum under the bar, though, what an ass.

    FreckledK - That would be very strange, for sure.

    Beach Bum - That's so rude and irritating. And what a bummer he wasn't as cute in person either. I had a date with a guy who was probably about that late. He kept calling and texting checking in...left work late, stuck in traffic, etc. But he wasn't remotely apologetic. Rude!

    notsojenny - I thought about inviting her to join us, but assumed that would probably have just made her feel worse.

    saratogajean - And she'd been waiting before I got there...so probably at least 30 minutes. Grr.

    Ryane - This was our guess. She didn't look very happy.

  15. Wow, not to make you feel worse, but I'll bet she was disappointed. Here's this perfectly lovely man sitting there, with flowers even, and he's not waiting for her. Bummer.

  16. Jessica is brilliant when it comes to citing the great movie When Harry Met Sally.

    Not so much, though, when coding links.

  17. "the men who were late to first dates were not actually worth waiting for."

    I had a first date with someone who was 45 minutes late, and didn't bother to call. I felt like an ass standing outside of the restaurant, luckily I had a friend who stayed on the phone with me the entire time. I didn't realize how much time had gone by until she pointed it out and I left.

    He sent me an email the next day saying that his flight was delayed and 'I guess I missed you at the bar.' He wanted to re-schedule, too.

    Funny thing is, he didn't even tell me ahead of time that he would be in another city on business for most of the day and his flight was scheduled to land 20 minutes before our date-- who in their right mind would think that would turn out well?

    I might have agreed to re-schedule if the email had actually included an apology...

  18. I love that picture of Nick! There are precious few excuses for being late these days where one can't contact the person waiting to let them know why there is a delay.

  19. You'd be there! I have a horrific story of a very short man that told me he was 6'4" when he was talking to me online...but oh wait...he got the numbers mixed up...

    For those of us that are still there...thanks.

  20. Even though I have never been stood up either, I am a current dater in the internet world, and I can feel poor Carrie's pain!
    I hate the first dates, it is an interview...and who enjoys going on that many interviews!!???


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