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Tuesday, April 21, 2009

To Live and Date in LA

If you believe, "that which you mock you are destined to become," I am about to become a short, angry, Italian, guy. And a trashy blonde.

This is the story of my date from hell. Or at least from West Hollywood.

The night compares in awful-ness to being hog-tied and forced to eat live worms during a multiple-root canal procedure while listening to the Muzak version of the Brittney Spears catalog. Or any version of the Brittney Spears catalog.

It all started at Houston's, one of my favorite casual eateries in LA. Before I go any further, let me say that I recommend never ever going on a date with a waiter who works at a restaurant you like (and, do not,whatever you do, let your sister write your name and number and a smiley face on the check and hand it to the hot waiter from said restaurant's other location in Santa Monica two weeks later).


It's Thursday night and I'm having dinner with my friend, Amy. We start chatting with our waiter, who is pretty cute, very friendly and doesn't stab me in the heart with his pen when I ask him to repeat the specials three times. During dinner, he checks on us often, he tells us he's an actor (shocking spoiler), he gets in trouble for paying too much attention to us but we talk some more anyway and he's light and funny and recommends a delightful post-dinner herbal mango tea.

We finish our tea and "E" (name left out to puts my left-over salmon in a take-out box and says he's going to write the date on the box so I don't "eat a bad piece of fish next week." He puts the box in a paper Houston's bag, sets the bag on the table, and saunters off. grinning. She's sure he wrote his phone number on box. I'm sure she's high on mango tea. We wager a Vanilla Bakery Red Velvet Cupcake and open the bag. It's a win/win- Amy gets the best cupcake ever. I get a date with a cute waiter.

Jump to the weekend- E and I text and agree to meet at El Guapo Cantina, a casual indoor/outoor, bar/restaurant on Melrose. On my way, I call him to tell him I'm almost there. He answers and I can hear him screaming...not through the microphone on my cell...through my open car window...from 3 blocks away.

"What the BLEEP is wrong with you, you BLEEPING asshole? I'll BLEEPING kick your BLEEPING ass! You better move your BLEEPITY BLEEPING car right now or I'll BLEEPING kill you, you BLEEEPING jack-ass!" He speaks into the phone- "Hey! This BLEEP-hole took the space I was holding for you. I should kick her ass!" Yes...I said her.

I park, get out, pray his outburst was just a one-time attack of Turrets Syndrome and walk toward him. This is the part in the story where I also recommend never ever accepting a date from a waiter you've only seen from a seated a notoriously dimly lit restaurant.

He's short. I mean to say, he's very very not tall. And, he's sweating...a lot. And repeatedly pushing his sweaty bangs off his forehead in much the same way a serial killer might nervously paw at his grimy locks while burying the head of his latest victim.

Crap. I'm going to end up in this guy's trunk and I haven't won an Oscar yet. Or seen Cirque Du Soleil.

Over drinks I learn that he is Italian, from Long Island, has very strong opinions, has given up alcohol for Lent (this bodes well for a girl on a date with a psychopath), believes in hitting children, thinks he and I have an "amazing connection", has a mother who is a "renowned and widely-respected" child psychologist ( and that he is taking me to Jones' for apple pie after I finish my beer and isn't taking no for an answer.

Dear God, please forgive me for everything I have ever done wrong ever in my whole life and please let a rogue bolt of lightning hit Jones' tonight so this date can end while all of my body parts are still in tact. Amen.

4 hundred-million hours of inane conversation and greasy hair-swiping later...I finally get one piece. 4 seconds after that, I get a text message: "had a great time tonite. hope you got home safe pretty girl. can't wait to see you again." Shiver.

I text back the next night and let him down gently while holding garlic and a wooden stake and facing Mecca and googling myself to make sure my address is not listed. And, then I vow to never ever date anybody in LA ever again!!!

Unless my cute neighbor asks me out. Or...I run into Kris Allen from American Idol.

P.S. I have yet to return to either Houston's location which is a pity because their grilled chicken salad is to die for. Their waiters, however, are not ;)