Back from Cali and The Last Date

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Guess who’s back?

The California trip went great, got some good rest. Had a blast in San Francisco, I still hate LA and San Diego was mainly taken up with the convention which was fun but painfully tiring. Got to hang out with plenty of cool cats behind the booth on both Friday and Saturday, we had an impressive signing line-up. It was inspiring talking to some of these guys and just seeing them do their thing. I got to watch Phil Hester sketch, talk to Stuart Moore about working on Firestorm, hear Scott Mills tell me about what he’s lining up and stare in awe while Juan Ferreyra drew heavily detailed drawings for people and that was just four of the guys we had behind the booth.

Hopefully I’ll have some good stuff to talk about in the coming weeks. I will quickly direct you to the column on Kids and Comics I contributed to over at Buzzscope. And for everyone waiting on an email from me, it’s coming, I promise.

I want to thank everyone who took time from their day and wrote some of the great stories that graced the site over the past two weeks. I enjoyed them, I hope all of you did as well and it gave me the chance to get my own shit together. I made a list of over a hundred stories I want to tell and I’ll start today’s with a nice follow-up to Robin’s story on Friday. It’s been talked about twice already so I should probably get down to it and tell you all about my blind-date that took place after Robin and I hooked up for the first time…


…my first and only blind-date, I should add. It was a nightmare and I probably deserved it. In my defense, I didn’t really want to go after hooking up with Robin but I already made plans and thought I’d be an asshole if I cancelled them.

Let’s get this out of the way right now, I met her online. I know, I know, all of the cool points I’ve been racking up have just been halved. Everyone told me not to do it but I didn’t care. Me and this girl, whose name I’ve forgotten, we had a connection, you see? I don’t remember what message board we met on, but I’m sure I was passionate about it and I don’t remember what our IM (and subsequent phone) conversations where about but they must have been substantial. This one night, we talked on the phone for three hours. Three whole hours! About…stuff.

We made plans to go to a Red Sox game which is a horrible idea for a pseudo-blind date. The next day I get a call from the girl and she asks if I ordered the tickets yet. After I tell her that I have not, she asks if two of her friends can come along, some chick whose name I forget and the chick’s boyfriend. I completely understand that she may feel a bit uneasy about meeting a stranger and I agree to order two extra tickets.

I never asked to see a picture of her. If she offered one up, I would have gladly looked at it. I didn’t want to seem shallow, though, because as I said, we had this connection that transcended physical attraction. So when I was waiting for her in front of the Pizzeria Uno in Kenmore Square, I had no idea what she looked like. Despite not caring what she looked like, every threesome that consisted of two hot girls with one guy had my praying that it was the party I was waiting on.

And then I heard my name.

And despite not caring about what she looked like, I was very disappointed.

She was just sort of frumpy and not very attractive. And she was wearing this hideous t-shirt with a bear on it, something someone’s mom would wear. Her friend looked like she fell out of the ugly tree and hit every branch on the way down. And her friend’s boyfriend looks like he was just smuggled across the Mexican border…and he got hit by the ugly truck while trying to cross a highway in Yuma.

But, this was about more than physical appearance and possible INS violations. This was a once-in-a-lifetime connection. And, besides, a bear shirt is better than a unicorn shirt. I get introduced to everyone and they thank me for the tickets.

All three of them thank me for the tickets.

And not with money, for the tickets, but with a thank you.

I was standing there, wondering if I should ask for the money for the tickets. I was a poor college student working in a pool-hall for the summer. Poor college students that work in pool halls can’t afford four Red Sox tickets. But I let it go and I ate the cost of the tickets and I started the date very pissed off.

We get to the game and I’m my usual self, telling jokes and telling stories. But I’m getting no reaction, no laughs. And I’m using my A-material. Not even a courtesy chuckle. And I’m becoming very, very pissed off.

Somehow we ended up sitting: Mexican, me, date and the girl that was boiled in the ugly pot. And my “date” spent the entire game talking to her friend that got her faced slammed-in by the ugly book bag. Her back turned towards me, I was forced to talk to the guy that will eventually be “stealing” jobs from Americans that actually want to work in meat packaging plants. And he was one hell of a conversationalist – all he talked about was cars. I didn’t even have my fucking license. And I’m now very, very, very pissed off.

I figure that after being ignored for three hours, they would pick-up and go home after the game.

No. No, not at all.

They invite themselves back to my apartment since I live within a few blocks of Fenway and I think I was just so fucking shocked I couldn’t say no. When we walked in the door, frumpy, ugly, illegal and pissed, my roommate looked at us and briskly walked into his room while trying not to laugh – knowing full well I was on one shitty date.

They sat in my living room and ate all of my Cracker Jacks and Funions for an hour while I checked my watch and stared at them, the kind of stare you give someone when you’re a moment away from killing them. And they talked and they laughed and ate my food and left.

The next day I called Robin and we went out for ice-cream.

The girl tried calling and emailing a few times after that but I never responded. At one point she IMed me and I pretended to be Robin. I wrote, “Oh, this is Jason’s girlfriend, Robin. He’s letting me use his computer while he’s in the shower.”

Like I said, I deserved the shitty date, and in retrospect it was pretty funny. Everyone has at least one bad date, this was mine. And since it looks like Robin and I are in this for good, my last non-Robin date was one that will forever remind me why dating sucks. Maybe that's the real key to a six-year long relationship.


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