Monday, August 29, 2005

Sub-Par

On the corner of the major crossroads by my house, sits a mini-golf course. I drive by it all the time. Many of those times, the sight of it reminds me distastefully of the WORST blind date I ever had.

I believe that people are set up on blind dates not because the setter-upper believes the two datees will really and truly get along. 99% of the time the only commonality they share is their singleness. Period.

I was set up with this twit (let's just go right ahead and get the aggression right out in the open, shall we?) by a woman who thought we would "really hit it off". I admit the word "hit" popped into my head M-A-N-Y times that night, but probably not in the manner she was hoping for.

I drive up to this guys apartment in North Scottsdale. It's in one of those gigantic ant colony complexes with like buildings A through ZZ or something equally ridiculous. Of course I was given shitty directions to lead me through this warren. FINALLY I find the damn place and I'm already feeling like "Bad Date" because I'm late.

He opens the door and even though he is probably four or five inches shorter than me (a negative, but since I think I have only ONCE dated a man TALLER than me, it's not exactly a deal breaker), he is nice looking and smiling and telling me not to worry about the tardiness (which I have apologized for with my first breath). I come in and we have a drink or two and talk about where we should go. We decide to go to the cool new miniature gold course that has recently opened up not to far away from him.

He offers to drive and, knowing that we really aren't going that far away, I acquiesce. So far so good. Not looking to bad.

We get to the miniature golf/bar/driving range/arcade place. We check in and pick up our balls and putters. As we reach the first tee, I decide to make the date a little more interesting and propose a wager. Whoever loses buys the winner a beer in the bar after the game. He happily agrees.

It quickly goes down hill from there.

First he insists, INSISTS!, on reading me all the rules. Um, hello?, it's miniature golf, not the PGA. I know/don't-give-a-rat's-ass-about the rules. He could not be swayed, and when I start cracking jokes about the rules he gives me the stink eye and shushes me. Oh boy. I'm still trying, so I politely turn away before rolling my eyes. He finally finishes, leans down, picks up my ball (where I have had it sitting on the tee spot waiting for him to finish droning on so I can play), hands it to me, puts HIS ball down, and gives me ANOTHER look until I back away from the green.

What the HELL has gotten into this guy? Was it the wager? Is he just THAT competitive? Or is he just a FREAK?

I have plenty of time to ponder these questions throughout the ENTIRE eighteen holes (you better BELIEVE I TRIED to quit after the first nine, but oh no no no). He set up like it was a million-a-hole skins game. He strutted like a bandy rooster after every hole he shot lower than me (which was about all of them). He heckled my shots. I finally started goofing around and hitting into the ponds and off the walls just to amuse myself. All the while he is chortling (literally) to himself because he is "winning". Beer schmeer, I just want this miniature hell to end.

Finally, FINALLY, we play the last hole. He smugly tallies up the score (yes, he had been keeping MY score too as I apparently seemed to incompetent to handle this task myself) and crows out "I WIN!!". Duh. If there had been some sort of giant stairway he could have danced Rocky-style on top of, I'm sure he would have.

We turn in our putters and head off to the bar. For me, the evening is looking up. Not only do I have alcohol coming quickly my way, I'm already thinking there may be someone else I can pick up in the bar and ditch this loser.

We sit down at the bar and Mr. Asshat asks the bartender if they have a beer list. They do, goodie, and the bartender gets it for him. When the bartender returns I tell him about the bet (with eye-rolling) while The Champion reads the list. After a minute he looks up at the bartender and asks, I swear to god,

"What's your most expensive beer?"

The bartender shoots a glance at me. I sit for probably an entire count up to five-mississippi with my mouth hanging open, gaping, before I bust up laughing. "Yeah right!", I say.

"No, really." he says.

The bartender looks at me again and says, "Er, it's blah blah beer imported from blah blah. It's $21.00"

"I'LL TAKE IT!", Uber-asshole cries.

I again turn to stare at him. "You're KIDDING!!".

"Nope", he gloats, "I won. You have to buy me a beer and I want THAT one."

I just shake my head as the bartender, after shooting me a pitying look, heads off to get the Holy Grail of Beer. I slam back as many Bud Lights as I can, while he nurses and strokes his prize lovingly, silently cursing myself for letting him drive. When we finally leave he actually TRIES to get me to come back in his apartment for "a bit". Ha! Not bloody likely you oblivious sphincter.

When the woman who set us up asked me how the date went I toned it down to about three sentences ending with an outraged complaint about the beer. She laughed and said he told her about it but said that HE also bought ME a beer so he didn't see what the big deal was. Yet again, this man STUNS me. "Um, right." I tell her, "It was a Bud Light. On Happy Hour. $1.50" She laughs again and I vow to NEVER let her set me up on a blind date again. EVER. In fact I don't think I had much to do with her period after that.

Fortunately I got over it, because the NEXT guy I went out on a blind date with was deliciously cute, fell madly in love with me, and took me to Las Vegas for my birthday.

They have free beer there.