85 \ Bats in the Cave.

March 2016
I set a date with 85 for a sunny spring Friday afternoon on the East Side. It was post SXSW, which had been busy with kids and travel and friends and a bit of rock and roll. I met her via OKC, and we had messaged back and forth a bit, and finally got schedules to align. Online, she appeared to be attractive, professional, traveled, and she had a child.

When she arrived she was probably about a decade older than advertised, which would have put her older than me.

(Someone recently asked if I usually date younger women. And the answer was ‘yes’. Not with intent however. By nature of online dating, an age – whether it be real or not – is disclosed. I’ve been on first dates with women close to my age. And long-distance-dated someone just about a year older for a short time – her story is yet to come. My date range for searches goes up to my age. But in general, yes, I date younger women.)

85 sat and I had already started a drink – she was a bit late – and I was feeling a bit feisty. In truth I’ve spent much of this year on first dates that should not have ever have happened. Lack of time to meet people in public has driven me to the apps. And there I’ve been, not so much as open, as has been my modus operandi since I’ve been single, but more along the lines of less selective. Which has been a mistake. And has led to a pretty jaded attitude when meeting some of these people. Not the best way to meet the next love of my life.

From the moment she sat down, she started talking. A good five minutes passed before I could ask a question, comment, say ‘uh-huh’, whatever. A non-stop barrage, about her, her ex-husband, who was a super talented artist and world traveler, and her child. I have two kids, who are super cool, but rarely are they the topic of talk, unless asked, on a first date. 85 talked and talked about how amazing her son was, and special, and talented, and was so far advanced, and I was kind of just sitting with morbid fascination at how self-involved this person was, and completely uninterested in the person opposite her.

I ordered another drink and just let her talk. The sun was shining, the drinks were doing what they needed to, and frankly, this was a shit show that I needed to sit through. And the whole time, an hour or so, as she talked and talked, there was a little booger hanging just inside her flared-with-pride nostril, like a bat in a cave.

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