September 03, 2005 by
Since airfares are what they are right now, Marci decided to go Greyhound to Pittsburgh. For $78 round trip, she couldn’t beat the price which was the equivalent of a round trip cab to deep Brooklyn.
Her return trip home made taking the bus an unbelievable yet worthwhile experience. In the depot she noticed a lot of men with the same style trunk all carrying Magnavox TVs. It was odd – as if they all hit a good sale at Big Lots. She noticed a little security reverse discrimination happening. All the white ticket holders were screened. The trunk-toting Magnavox guys didn’t have to open their belongings.
What was going on?
One of these guys was in front of her in line when she blurted out, “I just can’t believe this, he didn’t check your trunk – you could have a dead body in there.” He turned around, leaned over and whispered, “We were all just released from prison.”
This line man, Brian, asked Marci to sit beside her on the bus. She figured for seven hours, this was going to be a great story. She soon found out he had $200 in his pocket and he was on his way to a halfway house in Philly to live on a lo-jack until his full sentence was served. He was tall and good looking. “He had a body built like Adonis because, you know, he had time in prison to work out,” she said laughing as she retold the story to me.
Marci was the first woman Brian met since being released. By the time they passed Monroeville, he told her she was beautiful, he loved the scent of her hair, she had the soft skin of a goddess, and he had proposed to her and suggested she bear his child. During their rest stop meal break, he insisted on buying her lunch and promised to write her love letters since he couldn’t be on the internet or have a phone in the half-way house. At the Philly stop, he kissed her goodbye, professing his undying love and vowing to write. Marci waved goodbye to ExCon Brian, giggling to herself about her new friend.
On the same day as Marci’s wild ride, I had a date with Billy The Artist. He’s a corporate graphic designer by day and surrealism painter by night. He suggested we met at a restaurant near his house after he delivered one of his paintings to a gallery downtown. I made the trip over the hill and through Hollyweird to meet him.
He was better looking than his picture: eurotrash glasses, nice hair, no visible tats or freaky piercing. To break the ice I asked him to tell me about the painting he had just delivered. “Well, it is the last in a 4-series depicting a woman slowly getting mangled,” he explained.
Right about that time, the carafe of margaritas arrived. We actually had a great 2.5 hour dinner date. I thought he would be shy, but he talked nearly the whole time. I thanked him for the meal, and then we stood outside near the car talking more. I left with no hug, no kiss.
When I got home, I had a text message from him that said, “I wish I had it in me to ask you to help out with dinner. My car accident expenses have been bad.” (On Sunday, he woke up to find his parked car squished.) I thought the message was a little passive aggressive since he sent it right when I left the parking lot. He asked me out. He picked the restaurant. I drove to his side of town, and he had to text message me after the fact to let me know he was expecting me to contribute to dinner?
This is why dating really sucks and why unhappily married people stay together.
The following morning he had a yahoo instant message exchange with me:
Chump: cool. it was nice to meet
Chump: i shoulda asked for help on the bill. but had to be the nice guy that i am
Marna: perhaps it should of been coffee not dinner then
Chump: i learn hard lessons every date
Chump: i need to learn to stand up for myself more
Marna: i’ve never been on a date where a guy has made me pay
Chump: as always, gotta watch my own back.
Chump: i guess i didnt emphasize enough that big bill i just had from my car in a hit and run.
Marna: no need to emphasize. those are your problems, not mine
Chump: screw off
Marna: ? i’m sympathic to your situation, but if you are having financial problems, you shouldn’t be dating
Chump: creepy. my god. go away
Chump: you are another reason to stay off this online bullshit. you can fuck off.
Marna: Will do, but keep this in mind. Gentlemen pay. I’ve NEVER in my dating life been asked to make a monetary contribution to a meal on a date. You asked me out, I traveled to you.. good grief. I expected a guy from Texas to know how to treat a lady.
Marna: Nice meeting you. good bye.
Chump: GO FUCK OFF! YOU DUMB FUCK ASS. I HAD MY CAR HIT YOU DUMB ASS
Chump: DUMB FUCKING ASS
Chump: DO YOU KNOW WHAT A HIT AND RUN IS YOU DUMB FUCK?? DONT TELL ME ITS MY PROBLEM
Marna: All random acts. Like you asking me out and me driving to your neighborhood and you expecting me to pay. whatever. You’ve given me a wealth of material for my next piece. Ciao.
Chump: my god you are fucked up.
A guy that paints mangled women is telling me I’m fucked up over a $57 dinner bill and Marci gets a free meal, a kiss and a marriage proposal from an ex-con with only $200 to his name.
What is going on?