“The Rock Disaster Movie”

A while back, I went on two Tinder dates on one day. I have only posted about the second one so far. The first one was a little more mundane, at least on the first date.

This guy, we will call…. Badminton guy. Because he told me on our second date that he used to be a high level collegiate badminton player in India and almost went pro. Because I guess that’s a thing in India. And a friend of mine who has her own badminton net and no one to play with her always says she should go out with him so he will play badminton with her. But she doesn’t really want to go out with him, for reasons that will be explained shortly.

One funny thing that happened on my first date with Badminton guy is that we ran into the very same badminton-loving friend of mine, who lived in Baker at the time, on the street while we were going to Sweet Action to get some hipster ice cream. She was carrying a stack of books, one with the title “Teen Relationship Violence” or something dramatic like that and a picture of a girl with a black eye on the cover. It was for her thesis for her Ph.D., but she joked that it was her way of setting boundaries with random passersby in the street. Which cracked us up because we work in mental health. Badminton guy was not a therapist and not a native English speaker, so he did not get the joke and just said something about how people will think she is so studious with those books.

Anyway, date one was normal. Especially in contrast to the fact that immediately afterwards, I went on a date with that guy who showed up like 2 hours late and did a tongue-filled attack-makeout in the Lyft I begrudgingly shared with him.

The part where it stopped being normal is that after our first date, he wanted to text me and call me all the time. I think it was the day after our first date, I was grilling with some friends at my house and he sent me a bunch of texts, starting out normal with “how r u” (he had a good mastery of text speak for not being a 12-year-old from the U.S.) and gradually devolving into “I guess u just don’t want to talk to me :(” after a series of unrequited texts. My roommate told me that she wondered how many more non-response texts it would take for him to show up at my house and break down the door. Luckily, he didn’t know where my house was.

And he started calling me “baby” constantly, which I promptly had a talk with him about, but he kept doing it. But despite all this, I decided to give him another chance in the form of a second date because I tell myself that being overzealous is better than being underzealous (definitely not a word but I’m going with it).

So our second date started off when he picked me up at a friend’s birthday party picnic at City Park. Because he very specifically wanted to pick me up rather than meeting somewhere. This was complicated because of his lack of familiarity with Denver (like many bros I meet on Tinder, he had lived in Denver for less than three months at the time of this story) and communication barriers due to his less-than-perfect command of the English language and perhaps mine as well! After several complicated and annoying phone conversations, he finally found the spot in City Park where we were having the picnic. He then decided we should go somewhere with the best “American chicken wings” in town. I like the wings at Jake’s, so I decided to take him there. Where we awkwardly ran into one of the students I work with and his parents. Which is par for the course when I go to that place so I should have known better, and they are a really nice family, but still awkward.

Over the best “American chicken wings” ever, we talked about his badminton career, and how much money he makes. He was trying to impress me, I guess. He was a computer engineer for a diamond mining company. I guess that sort of thing exists other than just in the movies. He was also trying to convince me to go to Orlando with him because he had to go there for a month for work. I have a job, you see. Two of them. Also, it was summer, and Orlando is one of my least favorite places even in the winter, despite the fact that my heart is with all the victims in the recent Orlando tragedy and their families. Also, we are not there yet, at all.

But I decide to humor him and not just cut the date short right then and there. He wants to go to a movie. I remember there was some sort of halfway decent movie that was supposed to be playing at the Denver Pavillions downtown. We showed up, and any movie that would have been tolerable was sold out or playing in 2 hours. But he seems really committed to this movie plan, for reasons that I will discover later, and insists that we watch that terrible disaster movie with the Rock in a helicopter… San Andreas. I had to Google that, but it was the first thing that popped up when I entered “the rock disaster movie.” That might as well have been the title. But, as a consolation prize, it was in the theater there with the nice leather seats where you can recline a lot.

However, a little ways into the movie, I discover this is not a consolation prize, this just means that it is super annoying and cramp-tackular when he wants to hold my hand during the entire movie. I periodically shift around to get his claw-like grip off of me for brief intervals. Eventually, he gets bold and moves to full-on boob groping. Because that is the next step after hand-holding? Ugh. “The Rock Disaster Movie” as I will now call it, is also really long for a movie so lacking in plot, so this dance of periodically squirming out of his grasp and/or removing his hand from my breast goes on for much longer than I would like.

After the movie, I just feel grossed out and want to leave. Also, during all this physical contact, I determine that Badminton guy’s general scent is a lot of B.O. mixed with a lot of man perfume. Why do I always find the ones that bathe in cologne? Anyway, this wanting to leave is complicated by my stupid decision to let him pick me up and leave my car in City Park. But after minimal complaining, he agrees to drive me to my car. I tell him goodbye and that I don’t really think I want to do this again. He seems very sad and asks me what he did wrong. I can’t quite manage to put my finger on a kind way to say it at the time, so I just say that I don’t think we’re on the same page or something vague like that. And I drive off into City Park, where he will never find me. The end.





Maybe there was chivalry once…

I feel sometimes like my blog is me bitching about how dumb your average bro is these days. In my list (yes, I had to write a list to remember all these things, as previously mentioned, judge me if you want) of stories I should remember to write about in my blog, there are actually a couple that are sort of sweet. Most of them, sadly, happened at least 6 years ago, but hey, they happened!

So, when I first moved to Denver, in addition to having a sort-of-real job to get experience as a social worker, I also worked at a classic Denver ice cream institution. And no, it wasn’t Sweet Action, there weren’t enough hipsters for that shit to exist when I first moved to Denver! So you basically have two remaining choices to guess at, and again, I am trying to protect the innocent here so I won’t tell you! Both of the most romantic things that have potentially ever happened to me happened in said ice cream store. Probably in the winter, because there were too many angry ice-cream-hungry people for me to do anything but scoop ice cream whenever it was even slightly warm. You would think people would feel happy whilst waiting for delicious ice cream, but I think they just get impatient and it all goes downhill from there. Also, there was no air conditioning in this ice cream store in those days, which also makes people angry. Jeez, I sound like an old woman! But I digress.

So, the first story is this. I met a guy through my old roommate, he went to her church, which was actually probably the coolest church ever. Have you heard of Unitarian Universalists, readers? If I was going to get into religion, I would probably get into that! The reason I even met this dude is because my friend invited me to her church service because it was a demonstration on the Capitol steps supporting marriage equality! Best church service ever! And these people were seriously ahead of the curve in terms of social justice issues, because this took place in 2008 or so… So anyway, as far as I can tell, Unitarian Universalists draw from all different religious philosophies, but mostly focus on the good things that are supposed to be important in religion, like love, and human rights. So I am down with that, because those are pretty much two of my favorite things. Anyway, after the awesome church gathering down at the Capitol, they had snacks (another one of my favorite things!) and my roommate and I sat there and shot the shit with some people around our age. Among them, this guy, who I will call Tastykake guy for reasons that will be explained shortly.

So I’m chatting with this guy, who seems really nice, but definitely has a ponytail, which is not one of my favorite things. He tells me he’s from New Jersey, which, although generally a characteristic that East Coast people make fun of each other for, is sort of a commonality for us transplants out in the Mile High. People sometimes think I’m from Jersey, anyway. Around that time, I remember being told that I seemed like I was from New Jersey because I was loud and said “word” a lot. If being loud and saying “word” means you’re from Jersey, then I don’t want to be right! I still say “word.” I said it to one of the high school students I work with the other day and he looked at me funny. And I felt old. Ok, the point here is we get onto the whole thing that he’s from Jersey and I’m from Maryland and the things we miss from the East Coast. Among them, Tastykakes. What are Tatsykakes, you say? Delicious snack cakes, made by a Pennsylvania-based company, similar to Hostess or some other thing like that but with way better products, such as Kandy Kakes and Butterscotch Krimpets, or the best ones, Jelly Krimpets. You can google them, I am too lazy to find a good link. Now, again, this story is old because around this time last year I discovered that Tastykakes have become available at your neighborhood King Soopers. M’erica! But at the time, there were no Tastykakes available West of the Mississippi. Tastykake guy tells me that his mom knows how much he loves Tastykakes and sends them to him in care packages every few months. His mom is brilliant, I don’t know what the hell my mom was doing with her time back then, but it wasn’t sending me Tastykakes! Oh yeah, it was working. She was working to help pay for my sister’s college education. That bitch!

All right, I really need to get it together with these tangents. Ok, so Tastykake guy tells me he will share some Tastykakes with me sometime and I’m like ok, I will probably never see you again, but sure, bro. I am apparently not necessarily picking up what’s he’s putting down because I don’t seem to gather that he’s hitting on me. At any rate, my roommate and I head out back to our lovely basement home (that was back when I pretty much exclusively lived in basements due to being broke) and I don’t think much more of it. But apparently I, or someone, had mentioned to Tastykake guy that I worked at the previously-mentioned anonymous ice cream store.

One or two days later, he shows up at my work with a freakin box of Jelly Krimpets! We chat a little bit and I repeatedly ask him if he’s ok with giving me all these Krimpets, because to me (and probably him) those are like the equivalent of valuable swiss chocolates, or diamonds or something… He says, here’s my card, it’s taped on the box, call me sometime if you want. Potentially the best game a person has ever spit to me in my life. Thinking back on this, he must have either been in love with me, or just a really nice person always to everyone. And what did my dumb, 23-year-old self do? Eat the Tastykakes and never call him. Because he had a ponytail. Maybe the universe has been paying me back all these years for being a terrible person in this instance. Jesus, Tastykake guy probably tells stories about me in his blog about what it’s like to be the nicest man in Denver. He probably refers to me as Ice Cream Store Girl or something, but nothing mean, because he’s the nicest person ever. And I blew it. Ponytails aren’t forever, but love is.

So let that be a warning to you young babies from an old woman… Don’t sleep on chivalry, if it still exists these days. And go get some Tastykakes.