In Honor of Date Night Magazine’s Worst Date Ever Contest

The contest is going on now through September.  Check it out at:

Meanwhile, it’s a mixed blessing that I haven’t dated much.  On the one hand, since I haven’t gone on many dates, I don’t really have any horrific stories to tell.  On the other, I haven’t gone on many dates.  Sigh.  So my worst date ever story is pretty tame.  The fact that it was the FIRST date I ever went on though, sort of raises its “worst date ever” status as far as I’m concerned.

Anyway, here goes.  I was just shy of my 16th birthday.  The magical birthday my mom had told me I had to reach before I would be allowed into the dating arena.  I had waited with bated breath in anticipation of passing that particular milestone, believing that as soon as I did, the boys would flock to my door, each one of them with the promise of a movie (going to movies on dates was big for us back then).  It just so happened that a couple weeks before the big day, my boyfriend asked me to go to the movies.  It was to be a real date, just the two of us, in a car he would be driving (another big deal for us back then).  I asked my mom and after some good natured, yet torturous teasing, she said I could go.

The big night arrived.  My date, it felt so good to be able to say that, pulled up to the curb in his car.  I watched anxiously as he got out and walked toward the house.  He never looked as good to me as he did at that moment.  The doorbell rang and I rushed to open it.  He came in, paid his respects to my mom; answering all of her questions and taking very seriously her threat to do him bodily harm should he do anything to me that might compromise my virtue and my safety.  She then slipped me $10.  It was mom’s belief that a woman should never go on a date without enough money to cover her expenses.  That way, the woman would not feel indebted to the man, and there-by feel no obligation to give in to his advances.

The car ride was wonderful.  We talked and laughed, even held hands.  When we got to the movies, he held the car door open for me.  We walked arm-in-arm across the parking lot toward the ticket booth, my sneakers floating just inches above the pavement with joy.  We got to the ticket booth and I stood just to the side waiting to hear the words that would make this date official, “I’d like two tickets to Superman, please.”  Instead, my fantasy was shattered, my sneakers hitting the pavement with an almost audible thump – his voice, seemingly loud enough for the world to hear, as he said, “One for the 7:30 Superman.”

“That’ll be $4.75”

He paid for his ticket, then walked around me to the theater door, looking impatient as he waited for me to purchase my own ticket.  I hung my head in embarrassment, grateful beyond belief, that mom had slipped me the ten.  Once inside, I didn’t even slow as we walked past the concession stand.  I didn’t feel much like pop corn anyway.  Especially since I knew I’d have to buy it myself.  I don’t remember the rest of the night.

Talk about anti-climatic.  As I wrote earlier, I haven’t been on many dates, but that one certainly set the tone and taught me a very valuable lesson – never go out on a date without money of your own.

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