A mouthful of hair

She was blond, cute, smart and interested. So what went wrong?

Published May 21, 2003 5:44PM (EDT)

Trauma in Tampa

I was in Tampa on business and decided to look up an old flame to see if he wanted to go out to dinner. We met up on a Thursday afternoon and hung out for a few hours. Things were clicking great: teasing each other, making lewd suggestions as to what we could do after our night out -- and I was looking forward to our Saturday night date -- for which I, of course, bought a fabulously expensive outfit to match the fabulously expensive restaurant I was taking him to.

On Saturday night, as we were nestled into a booth eating fondue, he started to tell me about his day -- and how great it was to spend some time that afternoon with the girl he's seeing.


Apparently, sometime between Thursday afternoon and Saturday night, he picked up a girlfriend. Not just a girlfriend, but a girlfriend who was rail thin, brunette and younger. I'm older, blond and a ripe Size 6.

By the time I had dropped my first piece of chocolate-covered banana on my new skirt, he was telling me about how she was going to fly out to see him when he was in Europe that fall.

And I paid for dinner.

We ended the date with him dropping me off at a party where my friends were, and he promptly zipped back to be with his new girl. The next night, I saw them both leaving for dinner while I was saying goodbye to my friends.


-- Jen Miller

The slob and the spit gob

I swear this was not an episode of "Seinfeld."

I met this pretty blonde at a party -- a slightly less glamorous Gwen Stefani look-alike. I asked her out, and we decided on an afternoon movie followed by dinner at her apartment that coming Saturday.

I arrived at her door and immediately noticed a thunderous, full-bodied stench that had so many components to it, the very air around me seemed to carry slight discolorations. Looking down, I saw I was standing in a grayish, viscous puddle that was hosting a fly rave. About a minute after my second knock, I was beginning to think I'd been stood up when she dashed around the far corner yelling, "Sorry! I had to put the garbage out!" Puddle mystery solved.

She was wearing a cute red top, very sporty, and flattering jeans. When she went into her apartment to grab her coat, I happily noted that she was as cute and svelte as I remembered her. Caveat: Walking to the car, I noticed she had those little dried white spit globs at both corners of her mouth, the ones we all sometimes get. I'm not a fussy guy, so I mentally shrugged it off. We're all human and sometimes flaws are cute.

At the movie, she was charming, intelligent and funny. Secretly I was thrilled at my luck as the movie started. We shared a tub of buttered popcorn and a Coke. When the movie ended, as we got ready to leave, I noticed that the spit globs were still hanging on! The grease from the butter was shining all the way around her mouth, and you'd think that the popcorn would have dragged the globs into oblivion. Still, no big deal. I would just have to think of a way to have them exorcised by the time the goodnight kiss arrived, which I suspected it would, given that the date was going well so far.

We got back to her place, she got me a beer, and told me to sit on the couch while she made dinner, turning down my offers to help. While she cooked, I took in the apartment, which was like a shoe box, taller than it was wide, and it had two lofts: On one I could see a gray futon with stained sheets. The other was piled approximately six feet high with dirty clothes, including undies. There's something a little too intimate about seeing someone's soiled underwear before you've even kissed them, so I looked away and did my best to ignore it.

She also had two enormous gray cats who stirred only to growl at each other occasionally. I'm cool with pets, and they didn't seem to be annoyed at me, so I took the place in. Beer helps with denial, so I reached for mine. My hand had an odd nimbus around it. The beer was strong, but I hadn't had that much yet, so I took a closer look. It was covered with a thick mat of gray cat hair. Glancing around I saw the whole place was coated. Even the carpet, which was probably some form of beige, had a gray cast to it.

That was when she had put the pizza in the oven, sat down next to me, and told me how good her Bisquick pizzas were. According to her friends, they were renowned, she said. One of the interesting facts I learned about Bisquick pizzas is they take only minutes to cook from scratch (or from box, at least), so we would be eating soon.

During our conversation, I licked the corners of my mouth a few times in hope she would unconsciously mimic me.

We had just opened our second beers when the pizza was done. It looked marvelous. She'd put the ingredients on rather artistically; an aesthetic culinary event appeared imminent. I took a big bite, carefully holding the cheese so my chin wouldn't get a molten cheesy hug, and the odd sensation of many tiny things dragging across my tongue and out of my mouth almost made me drop the piece. The whole edge of the bite mark was lousy with threads of baked-in cat hair. Since there was so much, I thought it had to be a fluke, so I pulled off that part of the crust, explaining that though the pizza was good (not that I could tell, my mouth had shut down from shock), I liked a little less crust. The next bite was the same. As was the third. I nearly gagged on the third bite, managed not to, but my eyes watered up quite a bit. I can only guess she mistook that for newfound affection brimming up within me.

I gave up. By now, I was thoroughly, irrevocably grossed out. Critical mass had been achieved. I did not want another date with her, no matter how cute or smart or sexy. I went to the bathroom, rolled the cat hair off my hands, washed, and then looked into the mirror to prep for a breezy, promiseless exit.

The first words out of her mouth when I emerged were, "We have to do this again! I've had a great time! Are you busy tomorrow?" The globs were still in place, and I probably imagined this, but they were bigger. I have no excuses for what happened next.

I immediately abandoned all intentions of honesty, smiled brightly and said, "Sure! I'd love to. However, tomorrow I'm meeting some buddies, uh, out of town, and I won't be back till late, but how about sometime later this week?"

"Great!" she said. And stood there waiting for a kiss. So I kissed her. The globs were gone after that.

She waved to me from her door as I got in my car. "Call me!" she hollered. "You bet!" I hollered back. She closed the door before I was stricken with a full-body shudder. And, of course, I didn't call her.

I'm such a schmuck.

-- Name withheld

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By Salon Staff

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