If you are a single girl in the city (and by 'city' I mean Crown Heights) there are three things you ought to look out for. Yourself, oncoming traffic, and…well, Dov.
On paper, Dov was everything a girl could ever want. Sweet. Funny. Intelligent. Easy going. And at twenty three, three years Naomi's senior- he was juuust about ready for marriage.
He requested her on Facebook one night and they started up a casual flirtation via Facebook messaging. Since neither was terribly conventional they opted to skip the traditional shandchan process and go ahead on a date.
She heard that piing sound saw his message. 'Pick you up on Sunday at two,' it said, and it filled her stomach with jitters and butterflies and all kinds of wonderful pre-date creatures.
The night before their date she gets a call from Dov. They had a great conversation and just as they are about to hang up he says, "My brother won't let me borrow his car, so can we take yours…?"
Now, the whole shidduch thing was still unprecedented territory for her but she was still pretty damn sure this behavior was tacky and inappropriate first date etiquette. Regardless, she wasn't about to throw a hissy fit over the phone with a guy she hadn't even met yet. So even though she was inclined to get on the floor and kick her feet in a rapid motion, instead, she graciously agreed.
Eager, but kind of bummed, she got up at ten o'clock the next morning, in her dress and heels to clean out her car. The thing was, she'd been really antsy all morning and in the time it took her to clear all of her crap from her car, she'd polished off three Red Bulls and really needed to use the bathroom.
He invited her inside. When she emerged from the bathroom, he was sprawled out on his ratty leather couch. He looked at her with a grave expression and said, "Wanna just stay here and play video games?"
Now there were two possibilities. Either this guy was drop dead hilarious. Or he was total moron. She tried tried coax herself into the first option. It had to be a joke.
"See, that’s just the type of guy I am," he continued.
'This can't be happening,' she whined in her head.
Oh, but it was.
"I'm chilled," he carried on. "I like to just kick back and take it easy…."
The truth was, if she knew what was good for her, or had looked out for any signs of male pattern infancy, whatsoever, she would have grabbed her heels and ran far, far away from a guy whose idea of a grand first date was video games in his parents' basement.
But she didn't know what was good for her, or let's just call her optimistic. Instead she said, through gritted teeth. "I think we should go out."
See, Naomi was ordinarily a pretty laid back girl. Flexible. Low maintenance. But when they got back in the car and he asked her where she wanted to go, suddenly she wasn't feeling so "flexible" anymore. Disheartened, and annoyed that he hadn't planned a proper date, she sighed, "I donno, how about the Tea Lounge or Starbucks."
"The Tea Lounge is stupid," he huffed, shaking his head. He was loads classier than that. Obviously.
They drove aimlessly for about twenty five minutes and when they passed the same corner for the fourth time, she knew she had to take action.
"How about we get something to eat?"
This seemed to excite him a great deal. He claimed he knew of this great place with fantastic burgers. "You a burger fan?" He asked her.
"Sure, why not." She was pretty much a fan of anything that wasn't on wheels, 5x5 and making her want to hurl.
But just when she thought the date couldn't possibly get any worse, he told her to park.
It was Schnitzy's. A greasy little schnitzel joint off of Ave J in Brooklyn.
This was worse. Much worse.
It occurred to her as she forced one embellished foot in front of the other that this might very well be what hell was like.
The entire restaurant, including the orange clad employees, turned to stare at her as they walked through the belled doors. Silently, she cursed her roommate for coercing her into get dolled up, and the douchebag who had taken her to the kosher equivalent of McDonalds.
He ordered a super-sized burger, complete with rainbow colored sauces oozing out and about five pickles too many. She ordered fries.
After over an hour of strained conversation, complete disdain on her face and sauce on his, he shoved his tray on top of the garbage and grabbed some toothpicks for the ride home.
The fifteen minutes it took to drive from Flatbush to
Aww, how adorable. He thought there were be a next date.
"We'll be in touch," she told him and sped away.
Far, far away.
And they never FB chatted again.