Only one picture should have been my first clue that something wasn’t quite right. Let me describe the lone picture of my potential Plentyoffish.com blind date. It was barely large enough to fit his whole head. It showed him from the bottom of his neck to the top of his head and from ear to ear. It was so closely cropped that I couldn’t even see the background. Add in mediocre lighting, a bad scan job, a slight haze and that’s what I saw. He resembled the wrestler, Chris Jericho. Now, I don’t usually date blondes, not being particularly fond of looking like the perfect Arian Nation couple but as far as Chris Jericho was concerned, I’d hit that.
Jericho mentioned that he was from a small town and had finally moved to the city. I thought he was cute and I liked the idea of a guy with Midwestern values. My only hang up was that he only had the one picture. I would also come to find out that when he said he was from a small town, he was referring to Seattle. When I hear “small town” I generally think of Bum Fuck Egypt, Missouri. Not the grunge rock band and coffee hub of Washington State. This diamond in the rough was definitely no rocket scientist but for what I had planned his brains wouldn’t be needed.
Considering as much experience as I’ve had, I really should have known better but his one picture was so cute that when I received the quick note from him asking to chat I gave him my Yahoo screen name and told him to hit me up. He didn’t waste much time. Within minutes we were chatting. Right off the bat, I noticed his excessive use of emoticons. I’m not sure why he insisted on following up each sentence with a smiley face but he did. Every. Single. Sentence. As irritated as I can get with the over usage of “LOL” you can only imagine my contempt for the over abundance of the little yellow smiley face.
He lived and worked within minutes of me and had mentioned in his profile that he worked at Universal Studios. It would be a lie if I told you that the idea of free admission to the overly priced park didn’t cross my mind. I was hoping he was one of the higher ups or something awesome like a zombie that scares the shit out of little kids during Halloween. However, it turned out to be nothing exciting like that. Just a “manager”. Of what, I never found out. In a sense, I was actually glad he didn’t turn out to be the campus Clark Gable or alligator tamer. It was just refreshing to be talking to somebody without a headshot. Which, in my neck of the woods is very hard to find.
Right away, he thought I was funny. As alluded to by his 987 smiley face emoticons. He also mentioned it half a dozen times. Just in case the little smiling balls of yellow hadn’t given it away. He wanted to meet for dinner…like yesterday. Said tonight would be a “perfect Blockbuster night .” Nothing gets into my pants faster than an overeager nut job and an awkwardly timed cliché.
I broached the subject of pictures with him. Or rather, the lack of. I asked if he had a Facebook or Myspace page. He said that due to his job he didn’t post pictures of himself online. I felt it absolutely necessary to point out that he didn’t work for the CIA and therefore the secrecy was probably a moot point. I’m pretty certain that Universal STUDIOS, located in the ENTERTAINMENT capital of the world wouldn’t have any problem with people marketing themselves with pictures online. There was clearly something wrong with this guy (i.e. ugly or fake picture or both).
He again pushed to meet. I told him flat out that unless I got another picture I would not be meeting him. He asked for my phone number. I again told him no. So, he agreed to send me a picture providing I would agree to meet him for coffee. Reluctantly I did, knowing fully well that I had no intention of getting out of my pj’s unless he really did look like Chris Jericho. I also had to promise “not to plaster his pic all over the internet! ” Paranoid much?
In his initial picture, he had a slight shag haircut that wasn’t quite below his jaw line. I’m not a huge fan of long hair on men but he was definitely still do-able. He warned me that his hair was a little longer now. I assured him I was ok with that and had dated men in the past with long hair so that wasn’t a deal breaker. It’s like having a bald head. Some men can pull it off. Most can’t, but some can. Hoping that was the only difference I waited with baited breath.
After much begging, bargaining and promising not to flake (apparently this wasn’t his first rodeo) I received the blurry web cam photo. Once the picture of Jericho showed itself, all bets were off. This one was as closely cropped as his profile picture. At this point, I was seriously beginning to wonder if he even had legs. It also appeared as though he had actually turned off the light to take the picture (or rather his roommate must have taken the picture as I wasn’t 100% sure he had arms either). Also, his hair was long indeed. Well, almost to his shoulders from what I could actually tell. He had put on weight, a LOT, aged and developed a serious case of Rosacea. Now let me be clear about something. I myself am overweight and sometimes break out like a 13 year old boy. Some men like it, some don’t (not the acne, but the booty). I don’t much care. However, I post recent pictures because what’s the point of selling me 30 lbs ago? I’m not looking for a fucking pen pal. I’m looking for a date. So the idea of meeting and being outed should my pictures not be recent is not only unfair to my date but also just setting myself up for rejection. Not to mention a huge waste of everybody’s time.
Jericho fired off a list of questions in quick succession. “Did I pass the test? ”, “Where can we meet? ”, “What time? ” Did I want to meet him somewhere or have him pick me up because I would “love his car. ” Or better yet, he could grab dinner and a movie and just bring them to my place. Oh sure, like that was going to happen. I avoided answering if he had “passed the test” and told him I would meet him somewhere and that I really hoped he didn’t use that line about a girl “loving his car” a lot. I may be alone on this but the first thing I think of when a guy begins to brag about his car is that he’s trying to overcompensate for what’s lacking in the trouser department. Not that I now had any desire to be picturing ugly Jericho Gemini twins little unit.
I was now in a pickle. In order to get the picture I had agreed to meet this fool. But I believe that somewhere in the small print of a verbal confirmation, once a lie has been perpetrated, said contract is no longer viable and therefore null and void. This being said, I was too much of a pussy to let this guy know that our verbal agreement was no longer binding. So, I did the next best thing. I also lied. I asked for his number and said that I would call him in 30 minutes to set things up. Dick move? Absolutely. But no more so than him making me regurgitate my lunch.
Forty five minutes later I emailed him using Plentyoffish.com’s anonymous system saying that “a friend of mine had car trouble and I had to give him a lift. But, rain check?” He responded with a “Sounds Good! ” and I felt safe for the moment thinking that I had just dodged a bullet. He didn’t have my address, phone number or even email. Just my Yahoo screen name which he could easily be blocked from had he begun to get crazy(er). This man had creepy stalker guy written all over him.