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Sometimes you don’t need to be a gentleman

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 6:57 pm - March 22, 2012.
Filed under: Dating,Integrity,LA Stories

The other day, I had this bizarre first (and last) date.  After becoming acquainted in an online dating forum, we agreed to meet at his place for a drink.  When I arrived, he asked me what I wanted; I requested a water.  As soon as he filled my glass, he pulled out a plate, a lighter, a spoon and some other drug paraphernalia.

“That’s an odd way to fix a drink,” I quipped.  He asked me if I wanted to join him.

Guess he interpreted my support for drug legalization to indicate that I was not averse to dating a man who did drugs — and that I used them myself.

Realizing then how uninterested I was dating that man, I debated how best to handle the situation.  Should I just tell him as much and leave or be a gentleman and stay?  I decided to split the difference, be gentleman, but make clear that I couldn’t date a guy who did drugs.  He insisted I stay, so I obliged him.  We chatted for maybe an hour and I took my leave, saying I needed to finish some things up before bed.

As I drove home, relieved that I was free, I recalled a similar date with a man I had met online.  Wisely, he and I got together at a coffee shop.  As the conversation began, I realized we had little in common and pondered how long I should stay before taking my leave.  All of a sudden, he said something like, “Look, Dan, I’m just not feeling it, so let’s not waste each other’s time.”  I smiled internally, shook his hand and returned home, relieved as I had been recently, but having lost far less time with an incompatible date.

Gentleman he may not have been, but honest he was.  The other night, I should have followed his lead.

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15 Comments

  1. Well, I would have bolted as soon as I saw the drugs. And then I would have called the police. Perhaps that would be an overreaction, but I definately would have been afraid for my safety had I been in a similar situation. And I don’t think anyone that knows me would consider me a gentleman anyway.

    Comment by Rattlesnake — March 22, 2012 @ 7:46 pm - March 22, 2012

  2. I’ve actually had a date similar to that. Oddly, the guy was a real gentleman, so I didn’t have to be. Was a real eye-opening experience. It gave me more of a glimpse than I wanted into WeHo’s meth problem. And it taught me never to go on Adam4Adam again.

    Comment by Cinesnatch — March 22, 2012 @ 7:47 pm - March 22, 2012

  3. I should have known what was up when the guy kept asking me if I was a cop. Sad situation, really. He insisted he didn’t have a problem. And, well, that’s usually the first sign you do.

    I never felt my life was threatened though, even though I was in his (well, his friend’s actually, as I later found out) apartment. I’m not sure what calling the police would have done. No one wonder he was so nice to me when he realized I wasn’t a cop. Too bad I didn’t have a fake badge and a gun at the time, that might have made for a good/better story.

    Comment by Cinesnatch — March 22, 2012 @ 7:50 pm - March 22, 2012

  4. What exactly does your dating profile say? LOL

    Comment by Nathan — March 22, 2012 @ 7:51 pm - March 22, 2012

  5. I’m not sure what calling the police would have done.

    I’m from a small town… and the drugs are about the worst crime there is around here. That probably has something to do with wanting to call the police, or something.

    Anyway, I’m now thinking a church might be a good place to look for dates.

    Comment by Rattlesnake — March 22, 2012 @ 8:24 pm - March 22, 2012

  6. Anyway, I’m now thinking a church might be a good place to look for dates.

    I’m from a small town too and have a father who loves rifles. But, I’ve always been a bit oblivious, so there you go.

    Comment by Cinesnatch — March 22, 2012 @ 9:13 pm - March 22, 2012

  7. I’ll spare you my many unsuccessful dating stories except to say that I have more respect for guys like the coffee shop guy you describe, provided they are honest in expressing their feelings and can do it in a tactful manner. In other words, I’d prefer to have someone say what coffee shop guy said to you then someone who said after five minutes, “I’m only interested in being friends” when that was, in fact, a lie. But even someone who lies and says “I’m only interested in being friends” is preferable to the guy who says he wants to see you again, only to ignore you and stop responding.

    Comment by Kurt — March 23, 2012 @ 1:13 am - March 23, 2012

  8. A gentleman is not afraid to tell the truth, and diplomatically. A gentleman does bot waste a person’s time. So, it would have been gentlemanly to politely speak your mind and then goodnight. :-)

    Comment by AZ Mo in NYC — March 23, 2012 @ 1:55 am - March 23, 2012

  9. I can recall a coffee date I had from a dating service about eight years ago. The guy was very liberal and probably worked in downtown DC. Anyway, all conversations went back to politics and his liberal views. I talked about weather, and he mentioned he was for global warming. I mentioned travel to New Mexico (where I now reside), and he chatted about how the American Indians were mistreated. I mentioned sports, and he somehow got in a political viewpoint. He was clueless that you normally don’t talk about these things on first “dates.” I was so pissed off that I mentioned my support for the Iraq war just to anger him.

    Comment by davinci — March 23, 2012 @ 10:20 am - March 23, 2012

  10. The only mistake I saw was in your agreeing to meet a strange person, about whom you only knew what he’d put online, on his turf. A public venue would have been safer.

    As to your short date with the coffee shop person, like other commenters, I saw nothing ungentlemanly in what you described. He was straightforward and to the point.

    Eric Hines

    Comment by E Hines — March 23, 2012 @ 10:30 am - March 23, 2012

  11. Jeeeeez. That’s pretty much a nightmare date scenario for me. I think my worst one was where this guy started screaming and throwing books and food he was cooking at his roommate for some reason.

    Comment by Johnny Barnstorm — March 23, 2012 @ 3:31 pm - March 23, 2012

  12. Eric in #10, good insight and advice.

    Nathan, perhaps it was my “defensiveness” when he learned my politics as I had told him that I favored freedom in all endeavors, including drug legalization.

    Comment by B. Daniel Blatt — March 23, 2012 @ 3:48 pm - March 23, 2012

  13. I would have bolted the minute he started using drugs; I would have told him to his face I don’t date drug addicts. There would have been no date.

    Comment by Sebastian Shaw — March 23, 2012 @ 7:12 pm - March 23, 2012

  14. Drug addicts tend to date other drug addicts. It’s how they remain connected through their haze.

    Comment by Sebastian Shaw — March 23, 2012 @ 7:13 pm - March 23, 2012

  15. Stimulant abusers often seem to be pushed by their drug of choice to be sexual and to socialize, which can push them out into the general dating pool. The gay male community certainly has its share of them.

    I’m now living in a “big city”, so being a little “urban” and blunt with people is more accepted here than it might be elsewhere. Both I and guys I’ve been interested in have at times been pretty straightforward in situations where it wasn’t working out. It seems to me that when one guy “breaks the news” to the other in an unpleasant way, he’s intentionally being unpleasant, or that’s been my experience, anyway.

    Comment by Donny D. — March 24, 2012 @ 4:41 pm - March 24, 2012

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