This story is evidence that money doesn’t buy manners.
I met this guy through a friend of mine. She assured me that he was “well-established” and “normal.” And the kiss of death, “You guys would be perfect for each other.” But hey, I’ll try anything once.
We were going to go for sushi. The idea of sushi grossed me out – I much preferred fish that had been cooked, but I since I hadn’t tried it before, I’d give it a go. He assured me he’d take care of ordering so that I would have a good experience. I should have recognized the egomania in his voice before I ever met him, but couldn’t pick up on it because I was busy getting his third degree questionnaire. I must have passed, because he came at the scheduled time and day.
I dressed really nice even though I hated doing it. My girlfriend told me how “classy” he was and how he dressed in the latest fashions, blah blah blah. I used it as an excuse to go shopping. Nothing feels better than a new little black dress and strappy black heels to boost the self-esteem. I was long overdue.
I dressed to the best that my purse could afford. I even bought new lipstick. I was totally ready to catch his eye and just felt pretty.
He came to the door and was dressed to impress. I was worried that I was overdressed, but after seeing his attire, I definitely did it right. Phew! He shook my hand, introduced himself, and then pulled me in for a closer hug and kiss on the cheek. Neat! I love confidence! It looked like it was going to be a great night out!
My apartments were fairly nice and well known, but nothing crazy nice. Most of us drove sedans, mini-vans and trucks. So his Porsche stood out like a sore thumb. I was kind of secretly impressed, not by his wallet, but by the car itself. What most guys didn’t know was that I’d take a nice car over their bankroll any day of the week. So, we’re three for three and I felt like I was on a hot streak! He was hot, he was confident, and he was probably pretty well off financially. I wasn’t rich, but definitely was pretty and confident – I knew he’d met his match. Oh and bonus, he was taller than me when I was in heels. Awesome.
We got into his car (he opened my car door, another bonus point) and as I got situated, he said, “Would you please take your shoes off?” God bless my facial expressions – they can never keep a secret. It must have been made clear that I had no idea why he’d ask me to take off my shoes? HELLLLLLLO? They were $110 black strappy heels – the first pair I’d ever owned that there that expensive and sexy. Why was I taking them off? He said, “I don’t like heels being on my carpet, they could tear the carpet up.” Okay dude, you just lost a couple of points for being seriously superficial…but it was excusable. I thought, if I owned that car, I probably wouldn’t let ANYONE get in without a complete inspection, so I cut him some slack. It still had the new car smell, so I tried to understand and complied.
We had a relatively pleasant ride, minus the radio blaring stock reports and financial news. I tried to start conversation, but was politely and firmly asked to “be quiet for minute.” Yep, he lost a few more points, but I again tried to comply. Maybe his family fortune was riding on a stock…you never know. There was no apology for rudely interrupting me.
We arrived at th sushi place, and it was very nice. I was nervous. I had never eaten raw fish before, but have cleaned hundreds in my life and knew what they looked like…not sure I wanted to eat it that way. This was before the movie, but even then my brain envisioned something like Smeigle chowing down on a gut filled raw fish.
I was pretty relieved to see what sushi actually looked like. I let him do all the ordering. This guy could have written a book on table ettiquet. Napkin in lap, elbows off the table, knew which silverware to use for which course…I knew the napkin and elbows things, but the rest I just watched and followed. I was in over my head with this guy and started feeling a little unworthy.
The food arrived, and wow, was it highly decorated and elaborate. I had no idea how to do this. Do I use my hands? I have been American my whole life and wasn’t raised in a home where chopsticks were the primary utensils, so that was certainly going to be another issue. And these weren’t wooden chopsticks, these were the real deal. Oh man…my lipstick would not survive this – I should have bought the $20 stuff that doesn’t smear…darn you, dollar store!
He prepared our food. For as much as he was paying for this meal, you’d think they would have arranged it on individual plates. But, I learned that sushi is typically served on one big platter. This way, when on a date with someone who has more experience at living the high life, you can look like a complete bumbling idiot when placing what you want onto your plate. Someone should seriously rethink the norm on that one. I was spared that minor humiliation. He put the food on my plate for me.
He handed it back to me with various pieces of shiny raw meet placed on a bed of rice that must have been glued together – I never knew rice could clump so well. Now what? These pieces aren’t bit sized like a chicken nugget, they are like 2 chicken nuggets. Do I pick it up with my fingers? Is ketchup out of order? Surely there’s a condiment? What’s the green stIsfahan, is it avacado? I would plan to sit back and wait to learn what to do next.
I suppose it would have been good to read an ettiquet book before going out with him. Apparently, it’s polite to let the lady take the first bite. He was going to be waiting a really long time. We continued to chat while our foot sat there. I was freakin’ starving! I scanned the room and saw how other women were handling this, so I just did what they were doing. It was that or start eating the Tic Tacs out of my purse. I was famished!
I picked a piece of it up and I thought he was going to have a stroke. “Oh no, no! Use your chopsticks please!” Alright dude, I don’t care how much you pull down after taxes, you are just rude. I caught the waiter and asked for a fork. Instead, he brought me kid chopsticks. They retract without effort – kind of like eating with miniature tongs. Thank heavens! “I cannot believe you are eating like a child.” That was it, the gloves were OFF.
I put the sticks down, picked it up with my hands, and put it in my mouth…that’ll show him. Foiled AGAIN! I gagged. Not quietly either. I was super embarrassed. He was mortified! I choked down that cold wet raw fish and vowed I’d never do it again. Gross! Why do we pay more for less fire? Anyway, I sucked down what I thought to be wine but was actually Saki…I equated it to battery acid!
Somehow, we survived dinner, but it was very unpleasant for both of us. I admitted defeat, no way could I hang with this crowd. I was way outside of my element. I got into his car, and was reminded to remove the shoes. So, I tossed them firmly into the backseat. As we neared my home, I asked him to take me to McDonald’s. He pointed out that we just had dinner. I reminded him that he had dinner, I had a piece of raw fish and battery acid and hadn’t eaten in hours. With tremendous reluctance, he did go to the drive thru. I ordered a happy meal and requested the July 4th bear (the toy my son was waiting to get). So relieved that they had it! Then, he lectured me about eating like a child. I said nothing, I was so freakin’ hungry.
I opened the burger in his precious Porsche and ignored his pleas to not do so. But we were only a few minutes from my house. I reached in the back, got my shoes, my happy meal box, and got out of that car as fast as I could. He offered to walk me to the door, but I said it wasn’t necessary. I carried my $110 heels, dug the $12 thong out of my crotch, and walked back to my apartment while nibbling at my cheeseburger.
Home sweet home. I am not sure who the worse date was, him or I – but for once I did not care. I learned that I was not cut out for that sort of crowd. I have a few wealthy people in my family, and though they still do things a little different than I do, they are kind and gentle. I think this guy just needed a labotomy. Maybe he should cash in some stock and invest in a personality.
Oh, side note: my husband took me out for my first fun sushi date. I was more reluctant that time than with this guy. The difference is, my would-be husband explained things, how to do it, what wasabi is, why they have those tiny square bowls, and chopsticks are optional while most people eat it with their fingers. I only gagged a couple of times, but was much quieter that time. I gave no idea why, but I developed a live for sushi…and saki bombs. Moral of the story? It’s not always what you know, or what you have; 90-95% is in the delivery. It’s what separates the men from the boys.