How I Learned to Stop Being Picky and Love the Ride
Written By Ciena Leshley
A brief introduction to my last few dates:
At my new job, everyone is Taken. Like are seriously dating someone and have been for a while, which is impressive given that I work with a bunch of Art Bros who are 25. At one of our first group lunches, they asked me if I have a boyfriend, to which I audibly laughed. They didn’t press the issue, which is probably good because recounting a slew of my disastrous dates to my new colleagues may be bad praxis. Putting all this bullshit on the internet, however, is the way to go. If ya’ll don’t want to read about my failed attempts at love, well too fucking bad, cause here it is.
There’s a well-known saying that goes something like “you don’t shit where you eat.” Being from the South, I’ve heard this quite a bit. Yet being a 20-something city gal, I believe in learning the hard lessons by living them. I also believe in following through. So when this specific date went sour the first time, I didn’t give up. Oh no, I kept fucking going. Some may say I did it for the story, some may say I did it cause I love alcohol. Neither opinion is wrong, but these three or so dates sure were.
Chapter 1: Another Bullshit Night in Suck City.
We meet outside of his job -- a Irish bar that I genuinely like and went to pretty regularly. Between their curry fries (fries with gravy on the side, aka yum) and craft beer, it was my go-to spot when I was in the city. It is 7:30pm on a Monday. He said this was his favorite night to get wasted. This should have been the first sign that maybe, this was a bad idea. But I kind of knew the guy. He had worked at my local Think Coffee my sophomore year of college. When I’d go in to get my caffeine fix, he’d always be there. He was just the right amount of cold New York barista meets good-looking dude who listens to indie music. I thought he was cute but never made a move cause 1) it’s creepy to hit on people at their workplace and 2) seriously don’t ask people out when they’re at work. It’s rude, it’s weird, don’t do it. But viola! Two years later, he started working at my go-to Irish pub and we both swiped right on Tinder. If that’s not a New York love story, well I just don’t know what is.
As I walk up to the patio area of his workplace, he walks out. First thing I notice, he’s wearing sweatpants. That means that he was wearing sweatpants not only at work (gross) but also on a first date (gross). That’s literally all of the red flags rolled into one sweat-absorbent fabric mess. Unlike most Tinder dates, which start with an awkward “hi” and a small wave of the hand while you both shift weirdly not knowing if you should hug or hand-shake, bar boy instantly started walking to the bar. He was on a mission. The only time he slowed in step was to ask me if I had chapstick, because he had left his at home.
Instead of boring you with the meticulous details, I’ll give you a list-style breakdown. We went to 4 bars. I drank 6 G&Ts, 2 beers, and 2 shots of Fernet. He looked at me all of 2 times, interrupted me 4, flirted with 2 bartenders, and was just a General Dick 100% of the time. Upon entering bar four I had successfully browned out*. I know from my text messages (checked the next morning) that I must have walked out of bar number 4 in some sort of huff (??). Still unclear on the details here.
Somehow I ended up in a cab with bar boy back to his apartment. We get upstairs and make out a little bit (cause I’m a mess). And then it happens. The wave washes over. I pull my head up, and just in time, my hand moves instinctively below my chin and catches my own bright green vomit. I run to the bathroom. I puke for what felt like ten years. Bar boy comes and stands in the doorway (gross, red flag). He looks down at my puke-splashed, bright-red, cold-sweaty face, and he says:
“I have some mouthwash, if you want to pop that in and then make out some more.”
*Brown Out: a light Black Out
Chapter 2: Penis Envy.
A week passes after the puke-in-hand incident. I’m sitting on my roof with a friend. It’s one of the first nice New York nights, you know, the kind where you look out onto the skyline with a beer in hand and genuinely believe that nothing can go wrong. Then bar boy texts me, asks me what I’m up to, and if I want to drink. “On my roof drinking with a pal,” I reply. He says he’s on his way (red flag, you weren’t invited bro). He shows up, again in Sweatpants (GROSS). He sits with me and my friend, Carmen for a while, chatting. Carmen and I are actively making fun of this guy, but he doesn’t notice so it’s all good. He stands up and declares he has to pee. I offer him my apartment key, but he declines, he’s fine with peeing on the roof. I ask him to go two roofs down, but he only moves over to the one next to ours.
Five minutes after he returns from relieving himself, a woman throws open the hatch of the roof next to mine. “Who the hell just peed on our roof?!” She screams into the night. Carmen immediately slouches behind the small roof-dividing wall. I can’t help but fucking laugh. This boy goes “not me!” (he was the only boy on this roof, btdubs). “My nine-year-old son just saw your fucking DICK man you nasty.”
Chapter 3: It’s your Birthday and I’ll Do Whatever the Fuck I Want To.
I get a text at 11:30pm on a Saturday. “Come Out,” it reads. Apparently bar boy’s friend was having a house party on Park Ave for his birthday. This was probably the only time I would ever get into a brownstone on Park Ave, so I jumped at the chance. I get there, and this “house party” is ten of the birthday boy’s (whom I have never met) closest friends playing Mario Kart in his parents’ basement.
After a small argument about what a house party is, bar boy, his friends, and I grab a cab back down to the Bowery to drink in a bar. One of bar boy’s friends looks like the Weeknd (pre-haircut). Like, has gotten harassed on the street for looking like the Weeknd. Silly story short -- I made out with the friend that looked like the Weeknd. In front of bar boy. He leans over and goes, “Well was it good?”
Chapter Four: The Final Frontier.
Let’s just say, I did not go gentle into that dark night. On our last little adventure, I left the cab at a random corner and walked about 30 blocks to my apartment. We haven’t talked since, nor have we seen each other. I managed to ruin that bar for myself, and also the coffee shop this boy still picks up shifts in.
Moral of the Story: Don’t date where you drink. And if he doesn’t look at you in the first ten minutes, just leave. The rest will be a waste of your time or an exhausting four dates with a dude who has a butt chin and wears sweatpants.