It's a long story, but the fun is in the details. If you don't get a giggle, I'll send you a full refund of the purchase price.
So it's a few weeks into my freshman year of college. Because I'm so lovely and charming (or maybe because a) I'm fresh meat and b) it's early in the semester and the boys still have some of Daddy's money to spend) I'm getting more attention from cute and/or sweet (sometimes both) guys than ever before in my life. Being the big ol' flirt I was in my teens, I'm making the most of it--I believe my record was 5 dates in 3 days. That number might have been equal to all the dates I'd had in my life up to that point, so I'm loving college. Life is good. Until one fateful evening. (Dut duh dunnnn!) I'm eating dinner in the cafeteria with a bunch of my new friends, when along comes Goob...
Give me a minute to describe Darling Goob...On a coolness scale of 1 to 10 (1 being the kid who wore his britches to his armpits and ate his boogers, 10 being The Beatles) this guy is a negative 14. He's so pale, skinny, and hunched over that he looks like an obtuse angle drawn on a chalkboard. But that wasn't the problem--I've crushed on many an ugly guy if the personality was right. With Goob, his looks were the best thing he had going for him. He's dull, awkward, cranky, clingy, clueless, negative, and generally the kind of guy that even the school saint tries to ditch. Even so, I'm an ultra-nice to everyone kind of girl, so I'm polite to him whenever our paths cross, but that's the extent of our acquaintance.
Okay, back to the cafeteria. Darling Goob walks up to my table and asks me out on a double date in front of at least a dozen of my new friends. Having little dating experience and no Letting Him Down Easy training, I'm too tenderhearted to turn him down in front of an audience, so I reluctantly agree. The next day he corners me in the student center and tells me that this is going to be his first date since his divorce, and whips out a photo of his toddler! I'm so stunned by the evidence that this King of the Losers has even had physical contact with a female, let alone married and reproduced with one, that I'm incapable of gathering my wits about me to tell him that I'm uncomfortable with the pressure of being his starting gate date and I therefore miss my chance to bow out gracefully. UGH! I am the official definition of Too Nice, and I spend the rest of the week lamenting that fact.
Friday night arrives, as does Goob. With a carnation. (Now getting flowers from a guy I'm into is a good thing; getting flowers from a loooooooooooser who's already too attached is a weird thing. I take it to my room to "put it in water" and throw it on the floor, much to my roommate's amusement.) On the way to the car, Darling Goob informs me that the girl half of the other couple had to work, so this date is going to be a threesome, because Goob doesn't drive. The driver? The school horndog who was later expelled for sexual misconduct. Perfect. After insisting that I ride shotgun, Darling Goob spends the entire trip to the movie theater leaning over my shoulder from the back seat like a human backpack and awkwardly trying to make conversation. Longest. Mile. Ever.
We finally arrive at the theater to discover that we'd be attending a movie I'd already seen three times on dates I'd actually wanted to be on. Good thing I didn't need to pay attention to the plot, because I needed all of my mental faculties to avoid Goob McGrope the Octopus Boy. I spend at least two hours scramling away from Goob and end up leaning over so far that 80% of my body was in the empty seat next to mine. (And 90% of Goob was in mine.) To make things even better, 3 of my friends are sitting two rows back, having followed us to enjoy the freak show. (I don't have much room to complain, since I totally would have done that to them...if only it HAD been one of them!) I hear them laughing every time Darling Goob made a move.
So after the show, I'm hoping my ordeal is over, but nooooooo. We need to go to Wendy's. Where I have to split a Frosty with Goob, because he can't afford to get me one of my own and won't let me pay for one of my very own. Yeah, I wasn't eating much Frosty that night. So the three of us are sitting in a booth at Wendy's listening to Goob complain about his remarkably poor health and brag about how he's going to college on federal funds because he's some miniscule fraction Native American. Seriously, like, 1/64th. (I thought those funds were some sort of reparations for people who lived on reservations or might face discrimination because of their ethnicity--this guy's whiter than notebook paper, he doesn't have to worry about racial discrimination. Discrimination against the socially inept, yes. Racial discrimination? Not so much. Needless to say, I'm not impressed with the way he's working the system.) Meanwhile, our chauffer, Horndog, is trying to play footsie with me under the table--and I've got issues with a) him, b) other people's feet, and c) people touching my feet. Good thing we weren't at Sizzler, because I would have been putting a dull steak knife to good use on my wrists. Or one of my dates' necks. Either option was more attractive than my reality that night.
I've already taken up too much space, so I won't describe the ride home, but rest assured it was more of the same, culminating with Horndog asking me out as soon as Goob, his friend and roommate, left the premises. It's a good thing my sense of humor and appreciation for the absurd are more powerful than my temper. I'm actually glad I went on that date. It taught me that it's better to go through the discomfort of rejection (giving or receiving) than to suffer through the indignity of a night like that. I'd like to be able to claim that it was the only time I had to learn that lesson, but I had two dud-date refresher courses before the school year ended. Third time's the charm--I finally figured out how to say no gracefully. (Most of the time.) But those fiascos are stories for another day.