If you’ve been following this blog for a while, or if you know anything about me at all, you know that I have a great track record of dates that went horribly awry, dates that didn’t happen, dates that went down a path of mental instability, and dates that were just downright shitty (literally). So, despite my absolute failure of a dating history, I do enjoy going out on dates because my only 2 options for it are that it goes well and something comes of it, or it does not go well and I manage to have another ridiculous story to share with my (probably) adoring fan base; it’s a win-win for me.
This particular dating experience actually happened pretty recently. As you may recall, I thought it would be hilarious if I were to decorate a shoebox for Valentine’s Day like many of us did back in grade school. Not to brag, but it turned out great because apparently my shoebox wrapping skills are fantastic even after all of these years of disuse (clearly, I’m a natural). So, when I was invited to a friend’s Valentine’s Day party the night before Valentine’s Day, it was a total no-brainer for me to bring both the shoebox and the Star Wars Valentine’s with me, because I know how to get a party started like nobody’s business.
The Ryan Rick Party Starter Pack 3000
The shoebox went over exactly as you would expect: amazingly. Turns out, drunk people love writing ridiculous shit on cards and stuffing them in a box for some unassuming asshole to read later. At one point, there was basically a production line of people filling out cards to put in the box. Interestingly so (or maybe not, whatever), that production line was led by a girl who I’ve known for several years (I’m not going to name names because I’m respectful of peoples’ privacy and shit). Now, I wouldn’t exactly say that this girl and I were great friends, we are really just two people who see each other a couple of times a year at parties like this, get along decently and then part ways until the next party comes up; we really just kind of run in the same circle of people. During the course of the night, this girl had made several offhand remarks about being single, not having Valentine’s plans, having some guy talking to her but how she was really interested in someone else, and how she was getting out of her comfort zone and taking a leap of faith that night (I didn’t really know what that meant at the time, thought maybe somebody was going bungee jumping after the party). Now, I didn’t really pick up on any of this stuff because I’m not a great detective so I don’t follow clues and also because, in my opinion, she’s always been kind of an open book with her life/emotions and whatnot (even on Facebook), so I thought that was just her doing her normal thing (if that is, in fact, her normal thing she may want to look into blogging. I hear everyone is doing it these days).
Fast forward to after the party, I’m in my kitchen about 2:30 in the morning and, just like a kid on Christmas, I can’t wait to open up the shoebox and see all the ridiculous shit people put in there (times like these I start to wonder if my life even has any meaning). Because I’m a grown up and I don’t have to wait for mom and dad to say it’s okay, I enthusiastically opened the box to examine the contents.
Whoever left Goldfish Crackers is my hero.
Because of how many times I’ve already compared this shoebox to Christmas, I expected this whole thing to continue to be like Christmas: a painful, disappointing experience that makes me realize nobody likes me and I should probably drink more (just kidding, mostly). To my delight, I found that I apparently had a not so secret admirer, as the aforementioned girl had filled the shoebox with countless Valentine’s cards all saying some variation of “I’m seriously into you” and “you need to ask me out” and “This isn’t a fucking joke, ask me out asshole.” When I say there were countless cards, what I really mean is that I counted them all and there were 32 cards in there all basically “I don’t care if this comes off as slightly insane, I want to go out with you and you clearly need some help getting the hint, moron.” 32 fucking cards. Now, it wasn’t exactly her running me over with a truck that had a license plate saying “DATE ME,” but I started to get a gut feeling that maybe, just maybe I should see if she wanted to go out sometime.
Of course, I’m a grown up (arguably) with every intention of not looking like a desperate creep so I decided that 2:30 in the morning was probably not the best time to be following up on this, so I went to bed and texted her about it after a good night’s sleep. She told me I was an idiot for not noticing that she was into me sooner. I pointed out that, yes, I am an idiot but that basically every other time that we’ve run into each other she’d been dating someone else and I’m totally not known for assuming that someone else’s girlfriend is into me and she accepted that as a sensible answer (because, try as I might to prove otherwise with the stories on this blog, I’m actually not an enormous piece of shit). Here is the first of two spots where I will legitimately brag on myself in this post: the date set up. I asked her if she had any food preferences, to which she responded that she was big on Mexican food. I suggested a little Mexican cantina place in downtown St. Louis that was right in the middle of a bunch of other cool things to do so that, after dinner, we’d have options for anything ranging from dancing, to drinking at a bar, to bowling to hanging out at a couple of local landmarks, etc. I thought this would be an awesome way to basically choose our own adventure for the night rather than having something set in stone; because Ryan Rick does cool shit. Unfortunately for me (and her), she shot this idea down for a variety of reasons that included her not wanting to spend the gas to get there, not wanting me to pick her up in case I actually was a huge creepy douche (legitimate concern), and getting out of class immediately prior to the date and not wanting to rush downtown. This is not a problem at all for me because I’m a pretty easy going guy (but she totally missed out on what would have been a pretty friggin’ awesome night and if there are any ladies reading this that would be interested in a great time like that, you should hit me up but also be prepared for me to be a complete disappointment as a human being), so I picked a different place closer to home and the plans were set.
From my own perspective, I thought the date itself went pretty well. Obviously, I would not be writing a blog post about this situation right now if I were actually correct in that assertion, though, so fuck me and my opinion. We had dinner and margaritas at the Mexican restaurant while chatting it up. One thing in particular that I recall us talking about is how she was disappointed that there weren’t prickly pear flavored margaritas on the menu because she had visited Phoenix and there was prickly pear flavored everything down there, but there was none near us and that sucked because she liked prickly pear flavored things (I know, this sounds like a totally mundane thing for me to be bringing up here, but just remember that point and trust me because it will be on the test later). There was also a point where she said she had some concern going into the date that I might not be able to turn off my “funny” and have real conversation, which, I will say is a legitimate concern with comedic minded people, but I reassured her that after my last workplace burned down because I wouldn’t stop making jokes about how hot I was long enough to get an extinguisher, I really changed my tune and realized it was actually harmful to be funny all the time (but I am positive the firefighter who carried me out of the inferno got a kick out of my jokes about airline food. I couldn’t really tell if he was laughing under his oxygen mask, though).
We actually stayed there talking and having (what I assumed was) a great time until the restaurant closed. After a few stares from the staff that basically translated to “Estos gringos necesitan que salir de aqui,” we decided to head out of there and down the road to a local bar at her suggestion (also, really hoping I didn’t disappoint my high school Spanish teacher with my impromptu and rusty use of Spanish there). And since it was chilly out, I even let her wear my jacket along the way because I’m a manly man with rippling muscles that retain all of my body heat and an overactive imagination that made about half of this sentence absolutely false. Realistically, nothing important happened at the bar. We stayed there talking and joking until well after my bedtime (responsibilities, yo) which I didn’t even mind because I was out connecting with another human being who, for whatever reason, had taken a shine to me. Regardless, the night had to come to an end at some point (because death is inevitable or something). As we were parting ways, 2 interesting things happened: first, she asked me when we were going on another date and second, she spritzed my jacket with some of her perfume. As I’ve said countless times already, I’m horrible at signals but I thought her asking about the second date before the first one was even officially over was a pretty solid sign that I had succeeded in not fucking this whole thing up. And I’m also no psychologist but I’ve watched a lot of Discovery Channel and I felt like the perfume thing was something akin to marking her territory, which is both strange and flattering at the same time. We picked a night that worked for both of us, decided for the second date we would go out dancing somewhere (because I have some sweet moves), and I walked away smelling fucking gorgeous.
Here is the second time where I will go out of my way to brag about myself during this post. Because I’m not a total dipshit (not that I’m not a dipshit, just not a total one), I know that sometimes it’s cute, polite, and appreciated to bring flowers or candy to dates. But I also hate being cliché and, as already mentioned, I do cool shit, so I got online and ordered some prickly pear candy for her (I told you we were coming back to that prickly pear), and because the estimated ship time for it had the purchase arriving after the planned second date, I signed up for the free trial of Amazon Prime to get free 2-day shipping on the order (and subsequently cancelled my membership afterwards because I’m not paying for Amazon Prime). I do not tell her at all about this prickly pear candy because I know how to keep my damn mouth shut and I’m good at fun surprises. In fact, if she is reading this post now, it would be the first time she found out anything about this candy.
Surprise! I hope you like it!
See, she never got the candy because a few days before the date, I asked her if she had any ideas in mind for where she wanted to go out dancing and she took this as an opportunity to cancel on me. Here, I’ll just go ahead and post the texts.
LOOK AT HOW WELL I HANDLED THAT
So, she cancelled on the date and used a sad face, which I was pretty sure indicated sincerity on her part. I't seemed like a totally understandable situation. And as for me, well, I handled it the same way I handle everything (most things….eh, some things), by not getting upset and just cracking a joke about it. Not just any joke, but a joke referencing Billy Idol. I mean, obviously, since her and I weren’t going out dancing, the song Dancing With Myself was the perfect musical reference there (side note: if you weren’t already aware, that song is actually about masturbation. *ahem*). And, I put the ball back in her court just in case she actually wasn’t interested in rescheduling because deep down she actually thought I was an insufferable douche, it gave her an easy opt-out for saying “Thanks, but no thanks. I’d rather get hit by a bus than schedule another date with you” (which would have been hurtful, but fair). Instead of doing any of the things that I expected might come of this, she actually just never responded. That text of mine was sent February 23th. Still waiting for a response (you should imagine me impatiently glancing at a calendar right now).
Okay, so I’m actually not really waiting for a response (I swear, I’m not that pathetic). While it’s true that, as of this posting, I still haven’t gotten a response from her, I’m honestly not hung up on it because I’m a reasonable human being who both does not get too attached after one date and is kind of just used to ridiculous shit like this happening to him. In fact, thanks to the wonders of social media, I recently saw a notification that she is now in a relationship with some guy (maybe that dude already had prickly pear candies and didn’t have to wait for two day shipping). And because I’m not a scumbag, kudos to her! Lady in question, if you’re reading this, I’m not mad. I'm not bitter either (at least not any more so than usual). Realistically, I had my own reservations about going out with her (beggars CAN be choosers, just you watch me), but I figured it was at least worth going on a date or two to see if anything clicked. I’m sure that since we’re in the same social circles we’ll probably run into each other again and I don’t intend on making things weird aside from the fact that she has a pretty chill blog post written about her that actually doesn’t out her identity at all. I am, however, confused as all hell. Mostly confused about why I didn't even get the decency of a response rejecting me. Somehow, I managed to go from getting 32 Valentines, having her ask me for the 2nd date and then (presumably) her marking her territory on my jacket to suddenly just deciding “Yeah, that dude is totes not even worth talking to. I'm out.” It makes no sense to me. Did it just take her a few days to realize that she thinks I’m a garbage human being, and once that realization hit she had to just cut ties immediately? Is she that opposed to Billy Idol that even referencing him caused any good will I had built up to come crumbling to the ground? Was she intimidated by the looming success and fame that my blog will inevitably bring me? Was she on a plane that crashed on an island where some inexplicable yet convenient combination of time travel, smoke monsters, and magnetic fields prevented her from texting me back but still allowed her the use of Facebook (this whole date situation makes just as little sense to me as the events of Lost)? I’ll probably never know but I will speculate wildly about it.
So, for any lady fans reading this, you can rest easy knowing that I'm still on the market and you've still got your own chance to turn me down. But really, the two most important things that you, as my audience, should take away from this is: I have some prickly pear candies available if anyone wants them, and if you have a problem with Billy Idol, you better tell me from the get-go because that is a deal breaker.
Billy Idol gets it.