Ok, so I know that a lot of you really only care about my book/movie reviews, but there are some of you who like to know you’re not alone in the (mis)adventures of growing up.
Congratulations, I have a short play for you. I call it “Adventures in Dating”. All of it is real (besides the names), though it has been condensed.
Scene 1: “Tinder”
[Enter stage left, a petite brunette, mid-twenties. She’s clutching a novel to her chest, sighing longingly. Gently puts the book aside and picks up her phone. No missed texts or calls. Sighs again, this time sadly.]
[Bored, she begins skimming apps on her phone, stopping when she spies Tinder. Curious, she downloads it. Can’t hurt anything, right?]
Belle: Eww. You really make that you’re profile pic? […] Oh, he’s cute. […] Hey, look! A match! I’ll send him a quick message. Something simple…”Hey, what’s up?” ….Nope… Oh, he’s cute too! I’ll send him a message too.
[An hour passes. A message pops up on Belle’s phone.]
George: Hi! I’m fine. You?
Belle: I’m great. Tell me about yourself.
George: Well, I’m a Marine.
Belle: Oh my gosh, that’s so cool! What made you become a Marine?
George: I wasn’t a great student in school. I didn’t apply myself. So when a recruiter asked me if I wanted to join up, I decided that I did. What do you do?
Belle: I’m an English teacher, though lately I feel a little more like a history teacher, since my students are reading Holocaust novels right now. But I love history, so it’s not a problem.
George: Any particular era you like best?
Belle: I LOVE the Revolutionary War. George Washington is totally on my list of “People I’d Love To Have Dinner With”. But really, I love any war where they still use bayonets. It’s a different style of warfare.
George: You know, Marines still train with bayonets.
Belle: Shut. Up. Are you serious? I think this just made my week.
[Messaging continues in this manner for days to come.]
Scene 2: “Bowling”
[About a week after first talking to George, Belle prepares to leave for a bowling date to meet George. Mom calls, Belle answers.]
Mom: Are you sure he’s not a serial killer? I saw on the news that there are serial killers on Tinder.
Belle: Mom, I’m pretty sure he’s not a serial killer. But if it makes you happy, I’ll send you his phone number and all pertinent information to help the police find him if I turn up missing tomorrow, ok?
Mom: I’ll be checking!
[At the bowling alley. Belle and George have a lovely time. Two and a half hours go by. By the time they leave, Belle’s face is hurting from smiling so much.]
Belle: You know, I think this was the most fun I’ve had in a while. Thank you.
George: I really enjoyed myself too. It was really nice to meet you.
Belle: You too. Even if you beat me in every game, you cheater.
George: [feigns astonishment] A cheater! I even had a handicap that last game and I still beat you!
Belle: [rolls her eyes, but she’s smiling] Whatever helps you sleep at night.
[George smiles and Belle and George hug, a little awkwardly.]
George: [as he walks away] At least you’re not boring!
Scene 3: “The Weekend”
[Three days pass. Belle and George text daily. Then, Friday night, George’s texts abruptly stop in the middle of a conversation.]
[The weekend passes. Belle frequently checks her phone, even though she knows it hasn’t gone off. She frowns at the lit screen, wondering what happened. Did something happen to George? Was there a family emergency? Did he drop his phone in the toilet and can’t contact her?
[Slowly, Belle becomes angry. What’s his problem? Why isn’t he saying anything? If he’s trying to end things, he could at least say something. It would be the polite thing to do.]
Belle: [to her coworker, Sallie, on Monday] I don’t understand. If he falls asleep while we’re texting, he’s usually right on it the next day, apologizing profusely! Do you think something happened?
Sallie: Could be. Have you tried texting him back?
Belle: I sent something Saturday, just a quick, “Hey, how’s your day going?” but he didn’t respond. I didn’t want to respond more and sound clingy.
Sallie: Maybe you could try texting him again later? You deserve an explanation.
[That evening, Belle texts George. She asks if everything is ok or if he’s ignoring her and if he is, can he explain why?]
George: Hey, I’ve been really busy and I’m just not sure if I can find time to be able to hangout or go do anything anytime soon. I really don’t want to lead you on because you’re so nice and polite.
Belle: [to herself] When did he suddenly get so busy? He’s been texting me all day every day for two weeks! It didn’t occur to him a week ago that he’d have a full calendar coming up? Right.
Belle: [to George] Well, at least it’s an explanation. I was starting to think I’d done something to offend you.
George: No, no, nothing like that. I just didn’t know how to tell you.
Belle: Pro tip? Girls appreciate honesty. Start with that.
George: You’re right. I’m sorry.
[Belle turns off her phone’s screen and contemplates this latest whirlwind. She’s sad because she’s really connected with him, but if this is how he’s going to bail on her? Then he’s not worth missing.]
Hey, that was actually a lot of fun! I needed that creative outlet. Like I mentioned above, this is all true (especially George’s lines. We really did spend our first night talking about bayonets, he really did say “At least you’re not boring”, and his ‘explanation’ is nearly verbatim from his text.).
I realize that it’s probably not going to be a piece of cake to find Mr. Right (I’ve definitely tried), but I have to laugh about the Mr. Wrongs.
I mean seriously? This is how this guy ends things with me? I’ve heard better excuses out of my students as to why they don’t have their homework done. Yes, perhaps there is some truth to it, but I smell something fishy here. And where there’s fish…there’s a salesman hoping you don’t notice how bad it actually smells. I don’t know where I’m going with that.