I’ve been reading the New York Times Magazine lately, and I’m particularly impressed with their one-sentence book reviews.
As a writer, I know how challenging it is to condense everything down to one sentence, and I read it in awe every week.
(One sentence review of the one-sentence reviews: Commas are your friend.) Ha.
I even gave it a shot and tweeted a one-sentence review of the movie The American with George Clooney: “In an otherwise boring character study, you almost see George Clooney’s bare ass.”
I was reminded of these one-sentence reviews when I was given my OWN one-sentence review by a guy I went on a blind date with last month.
It was an UNWARRANTED one-sentence review, mind you. NOBODY ASKED HIM.
And…it wasn’t flattering.
SO F him.
And here I thought compliments were pretty easy.
HELLO?? LET ME COUNT THE WAYS???
Apparently not. Looking back, I don’t know why I was expecting anything more from George, since nothing he had done all evening was smooth.
(George: The star of the upcoming How To Lose a Girl in 30 Seconds.)
The obnoxious date started out at literally one of the biggest shithole dive bars in New Orleans (his suggestion) where two beers and a shot cost $3. No joke.
Normally this would be a fun place to pre-game before a music show, but it wasn’t ideal on a Tuesday at 9 p.m. with no post-bar plans.
But I’m a team player, so I met him there. He wasn’t ugly, but I wasn’t exactly head over heels on the offset.
He bought us cheap beers and we started talking about our jobs (he works at the zoo!! Everyone I know has been working at the zoo lately!) and I told him about my job as a newspaper editor and also my side job hosting bar trivia, which he found endlessly more fascinating.
I then remembered that one of the trivia questions for that week asked how many teeth a snail can have. So I quizzed George, the ZOO guy.
He failed miserably.
“No, like THOUSANDS,” I said in response to his “none” answer.
“IT’S NOT THOUSANDS!” he insisted. “I WORK with them, they don’t HAVE teeth, they have radials, it’s like a bone.”
He then pulled out his smartphone and began googling the “correct” answer.
“I’m sorry, I just don’t like to be wrong,” George said sliding his fingers over the screen.
(I ordered another shot.)
After the snail fiasco (stalemate because they have teeth on top of radials…but really I win)…and we actually started talking about our lives and interests and he redeemed himself by being smart and talkative.
We were talking for a good 45 minutes about a number of things – Work! Travel! Music! – when I suggested we leave the shithole bar because a man who looked homeless kept interrupting us to flirt with me. (Side note: Happy Birthday New Orleans!!)
“Well, where do you want to go?” George asked. We both tried to think of a place in between where we each lived.
“What about Lucky’s?” I asked. “That’s kind of in the middle.”
“No, I can’t go there,” George said. “I have an ex-girlfriend who practically LIVES there, and I don’t want to show up with someone else.”
Uh, fair enough, I thought.
As I was racking my brain for another bar, he continued on about his ex-girlfriend.
“Do you know her? You’d actually get along with her,” George said.
Yea? How’s that??
And then my one sentence review:
“Because you’re short with a raspy voice and super intense.”
I just stood there, frozen, not daring to say anything more with my horrible, no good raspy voice. I was so insulted I wanted to cry.
Forty-five minutes of talking to me and that’s all he could come up with?? Forget smart or funny or even blonde.
NO!!! I’M SHORT AND INTENSE AND SOUND LIKE KIRSTE ALLEY!!!!
It was legit depressing.
I then focused on the last part of my review.
WHO ARE YOU CALLING INTENSE, BUDDY??? YOU’RE THE ONE WHO FREAKED OUT ABOUT THE SNAIL’S TEETH!!!
All this was happening in my head, yet I had not yet responded.
“What’s wrong?” George asked me a few seconds later.
“Um, well, none of that is really a compliment,” I said in a whisper to hide my horrible, no good, raspy voice. Then I stood on my tip toes.
“SURE IT IS!” he said. “THAT’S MY TYPE!”
(Apparently I should have been flattered.)
“Well, nobody wants to be told that they’re intense,” I said, looking down. “Or have a terrible voice,” I choked.
“Sorry,” George said and I almost said “thanks” until he added, “I mean, I’m not sorry I said it, I’m sorry you took it the wrong way.”
TOOK IT THE WRONG WAY!?!!?!?!
Um…how many other ways are there to take it?? (That’s what she said) (See, I’m FUNNY)
I mean, sorry, George. My bad. You make me feel like a princess.
“You know,” I said. “Maybe we shouldn’t go to another bar. I’m…tired all of a sudden.”
And then I bolted.
One sentence review: A snail would have been a better date.