Nothing’s better than telling scary stories by the campfire during the last few weeks of summer. So gather ’round friends, and I’ll tell you some truly terrifying tales. That’s right, we’re talking about dating.
This first story is a favourite of mine, and can probably be credited for enough people saying, “You should be blogging,” that I finally did. Maybe one day I’ll thank that creepy guy for the inspiration (then again, maybe not).
It started out innocuously enough; we met online, he messaged me and both his note and profile were articulate. When he asked if I wanted to get coffee, I couldn’t think of a good reason not to, so we met at a nearby Starbucks.
I should have walked out the second he introduced himself to me, but I wanted to be polite (after a few truly awful dates, both my patience and politeness are wearing thin). He was wearing a Cosby sweater non-ironically, smelled like a cab, he was at least 45 (not the 38 he claimed), and his picture was clearly from his early 30s.
I told myself to just drink my tea and get out of there, and it is worth noting he paid for my drink (a whole $2). As soon as I told him where I worked, he began telling me about his time at swingers’ clubs (I was still at Ashely Madison at the time). I managed to steer the conversation to other, less creepy waters, although he was overly complimentary, tried to pull my hair back to see a tattoo, and refused to narrow down his age (after repeated exclamations of “You’re so young,” he asked my age again. When I asked his, he said “you know, 38, 40 something, 40ish.” I’m pretty sure age isn’t fluid and can in fact be narrowed down).
Not that his age mattered; I had no intention of seeing him again. He made that decision even easier when he asked about my work: “Do you advertise porn on Ashley Madison?” I didn’t see why it mattered, but I answered, “No, the site doesn’t have ads, but we do advertise on adult websites.” He looked me dead in the eye and smoothly asked, “Do you watch porn?” I must’ve looked at him like he murdered puppies, because he immediately backtracked and said I must not be the type to watch. I told him it’s not something I discuss with someone I’ve known for half an hour, and excused myself to the washroom where I actually had to give myself a pep talk in the mirror.
I returned and declined his offer of another drink, and he followed me out the door. He attempted a stumbling apology, but when I told him I found the conversation overly sexual for a first meeting, he said, “What do you expect? You talk about porn and you have tattoos.” Seriously. You can’t make this shit up. By the time I explained that I spoke about porn from a business perspective, I was at the intersection and more than ready to part ways, forever. I stuck out my hand for a goodbye shake, said nice to meet you, and thought that would be it. Nope.
He held onto my hand and asked when he could see me again. What?!? Were we on two very different dates? I reclaimed my limb and said I didn’t think that would be a good idea, and he proceeded to freak the fuck out. First, he asked why not with more than a little indignation, and when I told him there wasn’t a connection, he really lost it. “Who do you connect with then?!” “Well,” I replied, starting to get a bit upset myself, “if I knew that, I wouldn’t be online dating.” He didn’t like that answer, and asked, “Who do you connect with if not a nice, polite guy like me?” As I tried to come up with a response to that, he just yelled “FUCK!” at me and wallked away. Sorry, what? Is this real life?
As I walked home, checking over my shoulder and recounting my tale of woe to a friend, he sent me some lovely text messages. How dare I reject him or anybody for that matter? I brought shame upon all women by not paying for my drink (for the record, I feel owed money for the crazy I had to endure). By the time he sent one more, I had figured out how to block someone from sending me texts (thank you, Rogers).
And with that, campers, we come to the end of our first harrowing horror story. Scared yet? You should be, I’ve got lots more to share.