When Susan arranges her first meetings with men, she is sometimes a bit too intentional about making sure she meets the right person. This is because she once went to the infamous bagel place and immediately saw a good looking man sitting at one of the tables. As he fit the description of who she was supposed to meet, she picked up her coffee, marched over to his table and sat down across from him. She never said, “I think I’m supposed to be meeting you here today.” Instead, she simply launched into conversation with him for a good ten minutes before she realized that he had absolutely no clue who she was.
Before Susan had a chance to tell him about the mix up, her real date came over, and, using Susan’s own word, he was HORRIBLE (her use of caps, not mine). He didn’t look a thing like his photo, but he loudly announced to her that he would have “known her anywhere.” Susan got up and followed him from the first table to an empty table, only to begin a tedious conversation about why people post 15 year old photos. I have no idea what the poor man seated at the first table must have thought about all this.
Susan’s way of making sure that this situation would never occur again was to become very creative. For her next date, she asked the man to wear something distinctive so that she would recognize him. He did. When she entered the restaurant, he was wearing a pair of antlers. He wore them throughout the meal. As this was not during hunting season, and, as the restaurant was not located in Disney World, Susan was a bit embarrassed. (Reader note: Susan did not ask him to remove the antlers, nor did she use the “I’m going to the ladies room” ploy to leave.) Antler Man spent most of the evening assuring Susan that although he was “way over the hill,” his parts were all in working order. (I will not make an obvious joke, here). After dinner, Susan didn’t want him to walk her to her car, so she told him she had shopping to do, at which point he decided to accompany her to the local bookstore. Once in the store, he proceeded to pop out of the aisles to surprise her, antlers still intact.
This experience taught Susan that asking for something “distinctive,” might not be a good idea, at least in a public place. So, for her next encounter, she and her date agreed to each wear paper bags over their heads. He came to her condo complex and stood outside her garage. She entered the garage through the building, opened the door, and, at the count of three, each of them ceremoniously lifted the bags over their head. The fact that Susan wanted him to immediately put his bag back on was a minor issue. The major issue was why the two of them would have wanted to do the bag thing in the first place.
To be fair to Susan, some of her dates wore interesting items even when she didn’t require them. One of them wore bedroom slippers to a fairly nice restaurant, telling her he liked to be comfortable. I guess she should have been happy that he didn’t wear his pajamas. On the other hand, some men presented a problem by what they didn’t wear. We will not discuss that in this column at this time.
Most of the above scenarios occurred in restaurants. But Susan has also arranged to meet men on park benches, and in bookstores, bars, parks, public bathrooms, and outpatient surgery waiting rooms. We will explore some of these in Part 5.