Recently a few people I know have asked me for dating advice. I’m not the greatest person to ask these days because I’m fairly particular. Part of its age, part of its bad experiences- whatever the case I have little tolerance for drama or bad behavior. I haven’t told this story in a while but it will forever haunt me and I still find it funny so here you go…

Last spring I was in the local grocery store picking out some green beans for my bird, Lola. It was a Sunday and I was just being leisurely, taking my time, when all of a sudden someone taps me on the shoulder.

“Hi. I don’t normally do this, but I was just wondering if you are single?” he said, nervously.
“Oh, hi. Yes, I am,” I replied, clearly caught off guard.
“Could I get your number? I’d love to have coffee sometime,” shy guy asked as he dug out his phone.
“Sure,” I answered as I gave him a once over. He looked normal enough and seemed to be my age. He was wearing sandals and his feet looked groomed so I took that as a good sign. I hate gross feet.

I walked away after shaking hands and introducing myself. I didn’t really find Green Bean guy particularly attractive or intriguing but I decided to at least have coffee since he was courageous enough to approach me in the produce aisle. On some level I think I felt like I should reward his bravery and throw him a bone (don’t worry, I later discussed this character flaw with my analyst!)

Green bean guy called me a whole three minutes and two aisles later. I was in the spaghetti sauce section.
“Hi, Sparrow?”
“Yes?”
“It’s me. From the green bean section. Hey, I’m going to a concert with my friend right now. You wanna join us?”
“No thank you, I’m busy today.”
“Oh, ok, just thought I’d ask.”
“No worries. Have fun!”

Green bean guy called again the next day and we made plans to go to lunch. We met at a tavern across the street from my apartment complex. It was a nice day so we sat outside. He ordered a beer and I had a glass of champagne.

It didn’t take long to realize that Green Bean was a talker, and as you might suspect his favorite topic was himself. In the span of twenty minutes or so he told me that he had just gotten his second DUI and had to blow into a tube to start his car. He had also just gotten out of jail for stalking his ex-girlfriend, a woman named Donna who had “big, fake titties” and “the best p*ssy he had ever laid eyes on.”

“Do you wanna see a picture of her?” he asked as he started scrolling through his phone. The truth was I did want to see her. I figured she must look like some human Barbie doll since he had risked going to jail for her and my curiosity got me.

“Wow,” was all I could say when he showed me his precious Donna. I wasn’t prepared for what I was looking at. She was old. Like, old. I could tell she was definitely pretty in her day, when Love Boat and Fantasy Island were the hottest shows on TV. I could also tell she had a pretty awful facelift- poor Donna looked like a blond version of the crypt keeper.

“Isn’t she a beauty?” Green Bean said as a tear rolled down his cheek. Clearly he had forgotten he was on a date, which was fine with me because he had totally lost me after second DUI.
“She sure is something,” I replied, trying to be honest yet supportive. I had gone into full blown therapist mode now, just sitting back and taking it all in. I wanted to be able to diagnose him by the end of lunch.
“Yeah, well she’s a f*cking whore!” Green Bean screamed out of nowhere. His face contorted and in an instant he went from maudlin to murderous.
“What? I thought you cared about her?” I asked, doing everything to get him to talk more.
“That bitch won’t take my calls! F*ck her! That’s why I’m here with you. By the way, how much do you weigh? I like my women petite.”
“I don’t know if you noticed, but you aren’t all that fit,” I replied, stunned that he would be so brazen.
“Yeah, I know I could lose a few,” Green Bean answered as he hit his belly a few times.
“Ya think?” I said, sarcastically. At this point I was done with my salad and with Green Bean. I had formulated my diagnosis and had other things to do with the rest of my day, like wash my hair and watch paint dry.

We split the check and headed toward the parking lot. Green Bean approached me and pinched my side.
“Hey, what was that for?” I snapped as I pulled away.
“What?” he answered innocently.
“You were seeing how much fat I have, weren’t you?” I followed up, really annoyed now.
“Haha, yeah you caught me,” Green Bean replied as he leaned in for a kiss. I instinctively turned my head because there was NO way I was kissing this numb nuts.

When he didn’t get what he wanted he did what any chivalrous guy would do: he bit my ear.
“Hey! What the hell?” I yelled as I pulled my head back and grabbed my ear. “Has anyone ever called you a caveman?” I asked.
“No. Just a Neanderthal,” he replied, laughing hysterically.
“Hmmm, that fits too.”

That was the last time I saw Green Bean. He did have the nerve to text me the next day to see if I wanted to play tennis. I politely declined.

He never called after that. I often wondered what happened to him. Did he get a third DUI? Did he get to see dear Donna’s tatas one last time? Did he go to jail for murder???

I’ve tried to figure out what I learned from that experience. I am pretty anti dating websites but I met this guy in the green bean section of my local grocery store for f*ck’s sake. How much more benign does it get?

I guess I still need to screen better. That worked with Dan who stalked me on Facebook for months until I would Skype with him. He seemed nice and all until three minutes into the conversation when he asked,
“So, what are you?”
“Ummm, a Homo Sapien.”
“No, I mean what are you? Are you bi? Poly?”
“Come again?” I asked, thoroughly confused.
“Are you polyamorous?” he persisted, laughing.
“No, no, one dick is plenty, thank you.”

I was wise enough to end our conversation after that, especially when Dan (who was a total 6 at best) told me he liked to occasionally “partake” in group sex. Clearly one woman wasn’t enough for him and I was glad I found out so soon. Thanks but no thanks, Dan.

As you can see, my dating advice may not be the best. But if you’re still reading this here are my heart felt beliefs about dating:
1. Get off Tinder. One should never swipe a human being.
2. While you’re at it get off ALL dating sites. They are full of wounded people who just broke up with someone six hours ago.
3. Meet people while doing something productive, like volunteering or being part of a benevolent organization.
4. Hang out with friends so you don’t get lonely and decide after two glasses of wine to join a dating site.
5. Fill the hole in your soul with something fulfilling like a music lesson, art class, salsa lesson- you get the point.
6. Plan a solo trip- you never know who you might meet.
7. Don’t give second chances early on.
8. Make a list of your must haves and stick to it at all costs.
9. If you need someone to take care of get a shelter pet or support a kid from Uganda
10. Know your worth and don’t settle for less! xxxooo