What’s the worst date you’ve ever been on? Emma Tonny is prepared to wager that it won’t top hers and, quite honestly, we’re inclined to agree. Most of have had a bad date or two but this really does take the prize…
I met a man at a friend’s party, he didn’t seem like an obvious sociopath, so we kept talking over the coming weeks. Turns out he’s the worst kind of sociopath: the kind that isn’t obvious.
I had a rare few days off from work and thought: spontaneity’s good right? You’re supposed to be impulsive in your early 20’s. Wrong. Wrong! WRONG! Well, not entirely wrong. The principle is actually fairly sound, but it is a risk and, in this instance, the pay out just wasn’t there. Hindsight is a wonderful thing, and at the time it felt like a boldly romantic gesture to plan a last-minute trip to go and visit him.
I felt like we’d completely clicked when we first met but in retrospect that was probably just the alcohol. To this day, I’m not sure if I caught him at a bad time, he just hated me on (second) sight or there is honestly such a thing is two people being fundamentally incompatible.
The first thing that happened was that he moved our meeting from lunch to dinner. When you’ve travelled to see someone that’s kind of a big deal and left me with a lot of time to kill. The second thing that happened was that he told me he’d already eaten as he’s had to work late. Erm right, so we’re not having lunch or dinner? I’m a massive foodie so this did not sit well with me.
I’m British, female and middle class, however, so obviously I didn’t have the guts to complain- I just agreed to drinks at a bar. He chose a busy chain and went on to complain about how over priced the place was. In fact, he complained about money a lot. It’s absolutely fine to not have money but do we really need to talk about it constantly? My initial suggestion had been strawberries and wine in the park: cheap, romantic and fun. He’d picked a pricey place so why keep grumbling?
The evening deteriorated rapidly from there. At one point he hinted that we wouldn’t be seeing each other again in the future. Now, if I’d thought about it rationally, that was probably true. But we’d been talking every day for two months and I was riding the high of my impulsive decision to go and visit him. I wasn’t expecting to date, but I was kinda thinking we might see one another again- you know? The hurt obviously showed in my face and at that point he switched. It was like he lost all sympathy for me and stopped any pretence of being nice.
Suddenly feeling very alone in an unknown city I considered the option that maybe a hotel was a better option than staying with him. The problem? My phone had died, and my credit card was only helpful in so far as reminding me how broke I was. Trying to calm myself, I reminded myself that he was close with some of my best friends- how bad could he be?
Turns out, pretty bad. On the way back to his, I stopped to stroke a kitten; only to look up and find him glaring down at me. You don’t like animals, I asked. His reply? I just don’t really understand why you’re touching a filthy stray. What. The. Actual. Fuck. Who knew there were men in this world who don’t like kittens?
Having endured a forty-five-minute walk filled with the most uncomfortable conversation you can imagine, he asked if he should buy condoms. I’m not kidding. This really happened. He specifically detailed to me the price of said condoms and the extra length of the walk to get to them- managing to make me feel like a prostitute he was having to pay for. In a shocking turn of events, I told him not to bother.
Don’t: travel to see someone you barely know; it’s almost definitely not worth it.
Do: remind yourself that however bad things get, at least you have girl friends you can call on.
What I learnt: that I can survive the worst date in the world.