My Date With A Guy I Met Off Of Craigslist

I browse Craigslist for the usual stuff: bikes, cats, roommates, missed connections, butcher table. Never dates. I have friends who browse Casual Encounters and that’s cool, but guys, we’re young and attractive — go to a bar and meet someone who’s less likely to kill you. But I digress. I was in the market for a boy’s road bike, something lightweight that I could lug up three flights of stairs, and nothing overtly feminine that I’d be embarrassed to ride around. And in early fall, I found it: a small, black bike owned by a guy in Greenpoint.

So I did the whole charade: email the guy, assent to the price, tell him the times I’m free, leave my phone number after my signature so he knows I’m serious business. We arranged a time when we could meet, which was a few days later. At that point, I was doing a billion things a day every day and my free time permitted only showering and sleeping. I packed snacks in my bag so I could eat. But I could only think about the benefits of riding home after a show and feeling the breeze on my scalp through the helmet holes. I Facebooked the guy beforehand and the only Brooklyn, NY result was a thirty-something guy wearing glasses.

On the day of our appointment, I walked to his apartment and texted him when I got there. (Incidentally, he lives two blocks away from my best friends.) The Facebook nerd, wearing an orange windbreaker and Grateful Dead shirt, rode up on his bike. There were weird vibes from the start: he invited me inside, which I declined. This was a Craigslist transaction: Hey, I’m Grace, is this the bike, can I ride it first, cool, it’s great, here’s the money, bye. I rode to my friend’s show feeling strange. Then a text affirmed my suspicions:

Hey, I thought you were cute, let me know if you ever wanna get ice cream or go for a bike ride.

Hm. I mean, he wasn’t ugly (I know). I was going through a dry spell and although I wasn’t rabid yet, I was reaching the I-need-it threshold. So I told him, after consulting my iCal, that I was free Tuesday or Wednesday the following week.

We made a plan: he invited me over for a ‘snack’ Tuesday night. Everyday prior, he texted me, How are you doing? Have you been riding that bike? What do you do? What are you studying? I entertained his questions and read our conversations out loud to my friends. When I said that his enthusiasm reeked of desperation and that his constant texting was symptomatic of a clinger, they said I was being too harsh. Although I was wary of meeting someone off the Internet for something other than buying a chair, I had nothing else going on.

On the night of our date, I brought a bottle of wine and quickly surveyed the place for guns, knives, and S&M gear, but it was a normal 30-something guy apartment: bikes, antiques, speakers. He didn’t drink (migraines) but there was no way that I was not going to (normalcy.) The ‘snack’ could be best described as pizza mush. Since I was polite and tipsy, I ate it. He asked me more inane questions, If you could follow any band in any era, who would it be? When you’re in the office, how do you decide what music to play? When I said I was crazy busy and wouldn’t have a day off until the next month, he responded, I work a ton everyday and into most evenings, with several days out of town, and I hardly see anyone unless it’s work-related or I force myself to make time. I was enraged.  The implication that this joker was making was that I was exaggerating or complaining about my busy schedule. I did not have a second to fart around. While I ate almonds out of a baggie on the train and frenetically tried to schedule hour-long hangouts, I daydreamed about waking up without an alarm and figuring out the perfect ketchup: Sriracha ratio. (I’m pretty simple.)

When he asked if he could kiss me, the answer was an eye-roll. He tried to hold my hand; I jerked my hand away. Although my dry spell had spawned over months of no-nothing, thinking about touching him gave me the creeps. I had drunk all the wine and alcohol had cemented my ass on his couch, yet I was sober enough to know that I didn’t like him. I was under a drunk delusion that since my friends lived close by, I was safe. His frames didn’t suit his turnip face and he didn’t have books. He fixed bikes and he and his parents ran a museum where they archived non-astronaut’s attempts to go to space (I wish this was a fictional detail.) He was totally harmless and I could’ve thugged him / effed him / loved him / left him (because I don’t effing need him.) However, when guys say they dislike animals because they are dirty or don’t want tattoos because they are too permanent, these qualify as dealbreakers for friends.

I was trapped, not only because I was drunk but he was baking an apple crisp. Evidently he had a sweet tooth and I do not unless it’s gummy and/or sour. But he was intent on me eating it, so I ate a sliver and inhaled a gallon of water. I hastily hugged him goodbye and when I got home, my friend, who was staying with me, was already asleep in my bed. It was 1 AM. I had been at this guy’s apartment for five hours.

Summarily, he wanted a girlfriend to fawn over his bad cooking and mediocre haircut. As far as seduction methods go, forcing your interests down someone’s throat when they adamantly say that they are NOT a dessert person, pants will not drop. I’d rather have a second entree than eat dessert. He wasn’t going to ensnare me with cutesy Brooklyn romance, with its crafternoon bike rides and vegan cookies in the park. The way to my heart is garlicky, spicy foods and letting me breathe, like wine.

A couple of days later, when he told me that his friend just joined a [blog-rock band] and asked if I wanted to ride bikes if it wasn’t raining, I didn’t respond. No, thank you. TC mark

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  • Fender_

    ….

  • GrandVizier

    I feel a wave of very negative comments coming on…to be frank, this sucked. No moral or real point that I could see. 

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=13003781 Jacqueline Rae Shuman

       I found it entertaining.  Who needs a moral resolution to every story?

      • GrandVizier

        But it’s called Thought Catalog…so shouldn’t there be some kind reflection or thought provoking substance? The only thought I had upon finishing this was that she knew this probably wasn’t a good idea and, surprise, it wasn’t. But I’ll shut up now…

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=13003781 Jacqueline Rae Shuman

    YOU ARE A BRILLIANT SOUL GRACE. WRITE MORE.

    • Grace

      I LOVE YOU, JACKIE RAE SHU.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=612928768 Samie Rose

    You’re kinda douchey.

  • lululu

    Yeah. Grace is exemplary of why they call people in the city mean. Dude. You did not have to write a blog about this bullshit.

  • http://twitter.com/tannnyaya Tanya Salyers

    harsh.

  • http://twitter.com/faktorii Mike T.

    I never knew playing along would be *so* torturing- but it appears to be so when you’re thinking of the TC article you’re going to write once you’re done with it. 

    (Thanks for the enlightenment.)

  • Anonymous

    Aaaaand this is why guys don’t try to be nice anymore. Because after all that effort, they get mocked in a TC blog. Womp womp.

    • dunzZA

      serious victim complex

      • Anonymous

        Doesn’t really happen to me. I meant in general. But thank you for projecting.

  • biteme

    This was kind of disappointing. We get it. He’s beneath you because you met him on the internet and his admiration is unsolicited. He’s a pathetic creep. Okay. Not really anything new or interesting or particularly funny. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1363230138 Michael Koh

    i’m never taking you out to dinner ever again

  • http://www.facebook.com/t.jason.ham Jason Ham

    I find it fundamentally strange that you’re not a dessert person. That’s just weird, and it freaks me out. And I’m sorry I don’t talk like Murphy Brown. And I hate your pantsuit. I wish it had ribbons on it or something to make it just slightly cuter. And that doesn’t mean I’m not smart and tough and strong.

  • Seikel

    God I am Awesome. Women Recognize, Pronto Santos.

  • https://twitter.com/#!/emilyharent Emily Hanssen Arent

    That was thoroughly self-indulgent and better suited for your diary. As a fellow blogger and writer who also gets quite a bit of flack for being a sarcastic bitch, I completely understand where your head was when you thought it was a good idea to publish this. You should have slept on it and just…not published it. You come off arrogant and downright insensitive. 

    • Mathlvr

      Exactly my thoughts. This was better suited forr a personal blog. While the writing was fine, I wondered ‘what was the point of this?’

  • come on...

    i feel bad for the guy. you come off as mean-spirited. sounds like he just wanted to have a good time and didn’t do anything offensive at all, so why be so bitchy about it? 

  • http://fartsinlove.tumblr.com Ernest Fartingway

    If someone has to ask for permission to kiss you then they should know they can’t.

  • JessSaysHi

    This piece lacked in a lot of ways.  There was no theme besides this guy sucks. Ive been on enough shitty dates in this city to know that there are lots of  losers out there. No need to re-hash yours. 

  • Ahoyle

    Lol…my CL date story is way more atrocious. 

    • Melissa

      tell it. it’s probably better than this one.

    • Grace

      I earnestly hope it was a Casual Encounter.

  • http://www.facebook.com/donald.elder Donald Elder

    I don’t get it. Sure, this guy was wrong for you, but he tried his best. And for that, you bash him on the internet? That just sucks.

  • LaTourista

    Not liking dessert is an exit pass from the human race.

  • http://twitter.com/stefinmotion Stefanie J

    Aw on one hand I feel kind of bad for him that you wrote about him on the internet when he wasn’t even being a horrible person (seems kinda nice/harmless) but on the other hand FUCK forcing you to eat dessert. Second entree forever. 

  • Anonymous

    did you used to live in maryland? 

    • Grace

      Yes. How do you know that?

      • Anonymous

        i have really good memory & i remembered that i used to be friends with a girl that had the same name on livejournal when i was a teenager. i also remembered that she moved to new york. i’m really not a creeper though i probably sound like one. anyway, i’m from maryland, too (living in paris now), & i think we might have had some mutual friends even though we never met “in real life”. anyway, small world, or something…

  • Seriously

    YOU ARE SUCH A RAGING BITCH! Wow.

  • salt salt n pepa

    It kiiiiinda, just kiiiiinda seems like you wrote this so people can know how busy/important you are and how little you eat.  

    • http://twitter.com/kyleangeletti Kyle Angeletti

      Haha well said. 

  • fs

    Feedback is negative, overall, but I think this is because people who have have the misfortune to relate to this piece are afraid to speak up. I think we’ve all had this experience, this feeling of wasted time, of awkward incompatibility / trappedness, and it’s fair for someone to make it public. It’s not really about publicly humiliating this specific guy who was an awkward date — if that were the intent, names would have been mentioned. 

    • Leila

      I’ve attempted many dates with a similar result, I agree with you.

    • http://twitter.com/kyleangeletti Kyle Angeletti

      The trapped thing kills me.. Were you physically restrained? She drank a bottle of wine. Just get up and leave, like an adult. 

    • Blahblah

      Right, she was the one wasting HIS time. She got herself drunk and couldn’t leave, forcing herself on his hospitality, which she then pubicly mocks.
      I wish the author a long, lonely life.

  • Laura

    I was so disappointed by this story. What was that about? This guy is much more likable than you, and honestly, you come across as bitter and kind of a bitch. Fine, you don’t like sweets, but you must be one in a million. And honestly, how can we expect it not to be difficult to date in NY if we are behaving the same way.  The least this guy deserved was a reply text of some sort… a decent rejection text. At least a Thank You for the pie that you didn’t want, and for not killing you -considering you met him through Craigslist-. 

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