"Janet" is a handsome woman. Pleasant looking, she has a little bit of "extra" here and there, but it is mostly in all the right places. Sandy-colored hair (natural, she assures me), not a speck of grey. She is 44, and is a Nurse-Practitioner. She wears a bit too much makeup for my tastes. Her most outstanding feature (apart from an ample rack) is her eyes; Janet has hazel eyes that seem to change color, blue or green, with her moods. Really unusual.
Anyways, the date had been arranged for us. Janet and I are both sports fans (me, hockey, she baseball), so the "service" arranged tickets to a Staten Island Yankees game (that is the New York Yankee's A-ball affiliate. See tomorrow's Stars Today!). We met at the Ticket Window for an afternoon game. Janet arrived in full S-I-Yanks regalia.
That should have been my first clue.
Janet is a rabid baseball fan. "Rabid" might be too tame a word. From the second she arrives at the ball park she's into every pitch, every crotch grab, every call of ball-and-strike. She calls the pitches before they're thrown (and often, she's right!), and will tell you all you need to know about which strategy the coach should use in this situation, does The Wave at every opportunity, leads the cheers in your seating section. explains the nuances inherent in the way a particular player spits his sunflower seeds out. It's like watching a game with Tim McCarver off his meds...only with bigger tits.
Okay, that's a little intense, but it's not catastrophic. It just means she has a passion for something, and it may be off-puttin, but now that the game is over and dinner is on the horizon, perhaps things will take a different tack, right? That optimistic thought was nearly annhillated when she started dressing for dinner....in the stadium parking lot. I was asked to "stand guard...and try not to peek" while she changed clothes for dinner in the back seat of her SUV. Okay, kinda strange, but not terrible.
Dinner, however, revolved around three subjects; her ex-husband (a.k.a. the Fuckin' Bastid!), her job (all you ever wanted to know about vile bodily fluids, but were afraid to ask), and....baseball. In fact, she asked the waiter it if would be possible for the television over the bar to tune into the Mets game.
I figured I must have been pretty boring company, or that she just wasn't interested. The ballgame on TV, and all the talk about puke and enemas were designed to make me lose interest, so that she wouldn't have to tell the truth when the dreaded"Shall we do this again?" question was asked later on in the evening. Apparently, this is not the case at all -- I'm "a blast" --and a gentleman -- she says, and would go out with me again. However, "Janet" is a bit too much of a tomboy for my tastes. I'm thinking "no".
Date #2 was "Tara". Tara is a brunette, a hairdresser (although she kept correcting me; the proper term nowadays is Professional Stylist). She is 41 years old. She's not unattractive, but for someone who is a"professional stylist" she seems to have none. Her hair reminded me of those curly up-do's you often see on girls attending the Junior Prom. Her makeup is slathered on with a trowel. it's far too obvious which parts have been surgically altered. She has a voice that makes you wonder "whatever happened to Fran Drescher ("The Nanny")?"
Tara is dumber than a sack of hammers once you get past the surface chit-chat...and the second Margarita. I should have known when the date she had arranged involved a noted meat market for the over-35 set that this was not going to go very well. Tara, you see, is still single, always has been, and it's because she's a barfly. Not an alcoholic, mind you, just someone who never outgrew the 80's, when all the happenin' young folks in Brooklyn were out in the bars, or"down the Shore". Mentally, as far as her social life is concerned, this is where she still is. It's like having your own personal version of the "Jersey Shore", only with more fake tans, more fake nails, and more nasally conversation.
She's a nice woman, though, seems very decent underneath it all, and I'd decided to give the evening one more chance, nonetheless.I might have missed something in a rush to judgement. I shouldn't have bothered.
"Tara" chose this particular bar because that's where all her girlfriends hang out(also all single Professional Stylists with too much makeup and terrible haircuts...go figure) and she wanted to be seen with someone. Presumably so that they would have something to talk about in the salon for the next six months. While I was flattered that they all loved my hair (Oh my gawwwd! It's so thick and sawwwft! What do you do to it?) and couldn't stop running their hands through it, and the compliment that they would all "kill to have eyelashes" like mine was, to say the least, a new one on me, I don't think I could take this sort of mentality for anextended period of time without reaching for a pistol.
I grew up with "Tara", in a manner of speaking, in that she is the Prototypical Brooklyn Club Girl, but whereas most of the ones I knew grew out of that Club-and-Bar-hot-makeout-session-in-the-parking-lot lifestyle, she most certainly did not. Viewed in that light, all the makeup, the plastic surgery, the sparkly spandex catsuit with the oversized rhinestone-studded leather belt and four-inch stilettos, suddenly made sense: this is someone who wants to stay 21 forever.
Date #3 went surprisingly well, however.
"Kim" is a VERY well-preserved 43 year-old librarian. She's a bike rider and swims. A natural redhead (so she says!), with a wonderful sense of humor. She is delightful, intelligent, extremely well-read, but not nerdy. She has two children (one about to start architectural school, the other joined the Air Force after graduating from high school), who apparently have never given her any grief in their entire lives, which probably accounts for why she didn't say a word about them after acknowledging that they exist. She seems extremely well-adjusted and happy...which scares the shit out of me.
Kim and I met at the Rambles in Central Park, where she suggested a picnic. I'm not one for picnicking, but I figured "what the hell?". She said not to bring anything, and she would handle it all. And she did!
Kim apparently likes to cook, and does it well. Somehow, she managed to cram quite the spread into that little cooler of hers. It was like a walk down memory lane for me; Bocconchino with the REAL Mozzarella -- not that plastic supermarket crap -- roasted red peppers, fresh olives, Sotto Aceti (an Italian pickled vegetable salad), Parma ham, three kinds of salami, fresh bread...and two bottles of the Orvietto region's finest. She made it all, she said, THAT morning. This is how my Grandmother used to cook. As soon as she had discovered that I am Italian, she decided that this was THE way to meet. We spread a blanket out under a tree on the edge of the Sheep Meadow (it was "only" in the low-90's that day; the week before had seen 100+ temps in New York City), and feasted and had a blast.
And then the cop caught sight of the wine bottle, and gave us a choice: pack it up and leave in the next five minutes, or take the summons -- and possible arrest --for drinking in public. So, we left.
We found a coffee shop, and had a couple of cups each, and had a wonderful time. It turned out that six hours had passed since we had first entered the coffee shop until someone checked a watch. "Kim" has already gotten a call for a second date, and has accepted.