Monitor readers share their dating sagas
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They thought I was too young to meet a "strange boy" in the city. We saw "Terminator 2" - an appropriate title for our relationship: I was so embarrassed I never saw him again. - Julia BennetSkip to next paragraph
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Is this seat taken? I had been after Robert for months. But he always said he wouldn't date a co-worker.
I had season tickets for the ballet and even showed them to him. He mentioned that his mother had taught classical ballet during summer park programs for inner-city youths. And she made sure her children developed an appreciation for dance, particularly ballet.
Delighted, I mentioned that I had a ticket for Monday's performance and that the seat next to mine was always empty. We could get something to eat after work and take in the performance. I got the same old brush-off: "No, Phyllis, I don't think it's wise for co-workers to date."
That afternoon on the drive home, I told myself to give up on Robert. He wasn't interested.
The next Monday I ate a lonely fast-food meal and walked to the theater. The lights went down and the performance began. I was completely enthralled and barely noticed when someone sat down in the seat on my right.
A few seconds later I felt my hand being grabbed and gently squeezed. Startled, I turned an indignant gaze to my right and found myself staring into Robert's amused face. I gasped and he started chuckling. We couldn't talk at that point, but we continued to hold hands. I was so overwhelmed I blocked out everything that was happening on the stage. During intermission I asked how he had found me in that huge theater. He said he had sneaked a peek at the ticket I had shown him earlier.
We dated for two more years. We have now been happily married for eight years. Understandably for me, that "first date" was the best ever! - Phyllis Duffin Pennamon
A "Titanic" elbow Running late, we raced to the warmth of the Centennial Lakes Cinema, where the air was already heavy with the scent of fake butter. I reached for my wallet.
"I've got it," he said. "My dad gave me some free movie passes. Besides, I want to pay for you."
"Wow," I thought, "what a gentleman." This first date was going much better than I had expected. Settling in our seats, he whispered, "You are going to love this movie."
"We'll see," I murmured. I had avoided seeing "Titanic" for almost two months for expressly the same reason most giggling teenage girls gave as the explanation for their eighth viewing: Leonardo DiCaprio. I did not want to spend three hours gazing at America's newest teen idol but, always up for a hopelessly romantic love story, I was willing to give the film a chance.
I was enjoying the movie up until the scene in which Kate Winslet poses nude for the "artist." Embarrassed, I glanced at my date's face. There was a small smile twitching at the comers of his mouth.
My effort at enjoying the rest of the movie fizzled with the words "Iceberg, right ahead!" Unable to stomach even the slightest bit of violence or suspense, I cowered in my chair, hands over my eyes, barely breathing.
My date, taking inventory of the scene, attempted to put his arm around my shoulders. Clunk. His right elbow connected squarely with my left temple. For a moment I saw stars, and I'm not talking about Leo and Kate.
"Oooohhhhh," I moaned, the screen swimming before my eyes. By that time, his arm was confidently encircling my shoulders and he was just bursting with manliness, I was sure.
Why isn't he apologizing for his clumsiness? It soon became obvious to me that Mr. Smooth was completely unaware of the hit-and-run incident, so I let it drop. Feeling a bit woozy, however, I had a hard time enjoying the end of the movie.
All too soon, we were pulling into my driveway. With the exception of a brief moment of clumsiness, I was pleasantly surprised by the way our first date had gone. We sat in silence for a few moments.
"Well..." I said. "I had a nice time. Thanks for taking me."
"Me too. I can't wait 'till we can go out again," he replied, suddenly shy. Then, as I turned to go, he said, "Wait, um... Gimme five!"
Perhaps I'm still groggy from the blow to the head. No. I turned and realized he was serious. "Gimme five!"
I reluctantly reached over and slapped his upturned palm and watched his expression change from happy to reverent.
What a way to end the evening. I couldn't help but wonder why on earth this first date was so incredibly ... odd. Jenny Sawyer