Monday, August 02, 2004

On Relationships: The Dating Scene of 2004

As a 30-something-year-old woman, I must say that the dating scene of 2004 is getting more and more dismal by the day. This past weekend offers two perfect examples, since I had dates scheduled that never came through for reasons that have literally blown my mind. Here’s the short and skinny on each of these fools:

Date #1 – Daddy Warbucks

Daddy Warbucks, as we’ll call him, is a very rich dude thanks to the fact that he once was an NBA player and has since assumed a healthy-paying corporate job for one of our nation’s top household goods manufacturers. So far, I’ve seen him driving a Hummer, a Corvette and a Lexus—all gadgets which appear to be status symbols for this otherwise unfulfilled ex-athlete.

This guy is in his late 30s, has no children and no prior marriages. He recently bought his mother a home, and has at least two of his own. He made a startling confession on our first date, however. He said that, in his family, he’s never seen any examples of a quality relationship, and his father was notorious for sleeping around on his mother. A true player, indeed. But, based on the fact that my own family is so sound, he thought he could learn a thing or two from me about what a real relationship was supposed to be like.

Woo-hoo! Finally, a dude that knows his faults and is willing to correct them. What a breath of fresh air, or so I thought. But I could never get over this nagging feeling he gave me that seemed like he felt some sense of entitlement to everything…especially the ladies! His request for a kiss goodnight seemed more like a demand. And instead of a second date, he made at least two requests to “come over and spend some time with me.” That might be cool during the relationship phase, but when it’s time for courting, he doesn’t have any business trying to move so quickly toward a night-cap during the booty call hours. It’s just simply unacceptable.

For one thing, he never earned the right to come inside my walls—household or otherwise. I thought he might have gotten the hint when he called one day to ask me out to lunch. I didn’t have any plans, so I accepted. We had a nice lunch that gave us a chance to talk about these things. I told him my concerns, and he did a good job of navigating me through them to a point where I felt comfortable enough to give him another shot. So, we made plans to go out this past Friday night.

He called me while I was at work on Friday.

“Did you decide what you wanted to do this evening,” he asks?

“No, but I promise to have the whole schedule worked out before I leave work this evening.”

“Well, what are you going to cook me?”

Now, this was a Friday. One thing I don’t do on ANY Friday is cook. The last thing I’m thinking about after a hard week at work is slaving over a hot stove for some man I hardly know. It just ain’t gonna happen!

So, I said, “I don’t cook on Fridays. What happened to us going out?”

“You know, you seem to have a lot of rules I don’t like,” he says with what sounds dangerously close to an attitude.

“Well, it sounds like you’ve got a lot of things you’re just going to have to get over,” I say with equal attitude just as we’re interrupted by a business call I have to take.

“Can I call you back?”

“Sure,” he says, “call me back when you get finished.”

I called him, and he never returned my call. I haven’t heard from him since.

Date #2 – The Surprise

I recently connected with someone I dated a few months ago, but just didn’t connect with at the time. This guy was also great on paper. He had his own real estate venture going, where he was buying up old properties, fixing them up and then either renting them out or selling them for profit. At present, he has at least twelve properties in his arsenal.

So, thanks to the fact that my prospects were drying up lately and because there was never any real reason behind the fact that we didn’t connect, I decided to give him a call. I live in a two-family house that he said he was interested in buying if it ever went on the market. It did…so that was my excuse to call.

We went out last Friday to dinner and a movie. The date was nice and uneventful. Nice conversation…good chemistry…the whole nine. We ended the date around 1am, and I said goodnight to him at my door.

This past Saturday, he called to see if we could go out again. He was in Knoxville at the time on what he said was business. He lives there part time, so I didn’t think anything of it. He was coming back Saturday afternoon, and wanted us to hook up that night. It sounded good to me especially since my date the night before bombed so pathetically.

His call came about 9am Saturday morning. That’s no problem for me, because I’m always up by 7am on Saturdays.

“What’s up, girl?”

“Nothing…what’s up with you?”

“Nothing. What are you doing today?”

“I actually don’t have anything scheduled.”

“I was hoping we could hook up tonight, if you’re not busy.”

“That sounds like a plan.”

We get off the phone, and I call my girlfriend, who is the person who introduced us in the first place.

“What-up, girl! You know I’m going out with your boy tonight.”

“What?! When did ya’ll start hooking up again? I thought you said you didn’t like him.”

“I know…I did say that. But there really wasn’t any particular reason why. We went out last week and had a good time, so I thought we should try it again. Girl, he said he was looking to start something serious, and you know that sounds good to me!”

Something in her voice sounded suspect. She seemed more concerned than happy, which was odd to me because she hooked us up.

“Oh…well there is something I think I should tell you about him that I just found out. Now girl, you cannot say a word, because I was sworn to secrecy. And I was told NOT to tell you in particular.”

“Okay…now you know you had better spit it out, Chickie! Is he in Knoxville visiting his wife or something?” I knew whatever it was had to be serious.

“No girl, it’s nothing like that. It doesn’t have anything to do with another woman.”

“Well, what is it. You have to tell me before I go out with him again. What if we come back here and do the do?”

“You had better slow your roll on that one, Sista. He just got sentenced to one year in prison yesterday. That’s what he was in Knoxville for.”

There must have been about two minutes of silence while I marinated on what she just told me.

“Damn. Are you for real? Prison? For what?”

“Girl, he’s going up on some Martha Stewart-type shit. He and his boy were involved in some white-collar bullshit and got nabbed by the FBI.”

“But I thought he was doing all his stuff legitimately! I thought you said this boy had his shit together! He’s going to jail!”

“I thought he had his stuff together, too. I can’t believe he even thought about pulling this. It’s really not like him, but he’s on his way to the joint nonetheless.”

Needless to say, I called Ole Boy right after I hung up from my girl to cancel our date. There just was no point to the whole thing. I can buy my own food, pay for my own movies and do whatever else I want on my own. But I wasn’t trying to hook up with somebody who was acting like he wanted to get close to me just so that he could have somebody write to his ass while he was locked away. I am not a prison groupie. I’m not down with the visits through the glass windows and phone receivers. I’m not trying to see him all dressed in orange or stripes or whatever they have to wear in the prison he’s on his way to.

It just ain’t me.

So, it’s Monday, and I face the week with no dates in site. Daddy Warbucks has officially been written off as an asshole who thinks every woman should sweat him. And The Surprise was just way too surprising for me. He’s looking at 365 days of pure testosterone! And no straight man would be happy about that.

So that, my friends, is dating in 2004 for those of you who didn’t know. It sucks. It sucks. It sucks. And that’s about the only way to sum it up.

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