You know a date has gone wrong when you’re apologizing in the first five minutes.
“I’m sorry,” I tell her.
She frowns, she even looks pretty when she frowns. Idiot, I think, berating myself.
“Well you shouldn’t say things like that,” she says, angrier still.
“I, uh, I’m sorry?”
“You know, women can do anything. I bet I could kick your ass if I wanted.”
“Doubtful,” I mutter.
Before I can take a sip of my drink she reaches out and smacks me across the face.
“Ah!” I push back. People in the restaurant look, then look away. Lovers quarrel, they think, I think. If only they knew how sexist that was, apparently.
“I’m sorry, I just said I like when a woman looks good in a dress.” I cringe and keep myself at a distance from the table. She looks murderous.
“Well why can’t I look good in anything? Why does it have to be about a dress? Why couldn’t you tell me about my eyes or my ears or my little toes, why do you find the one thing, that does not identify me, so attractive?”
She crosses her arms. I shrug.
“Crap shoot? I was just trying to pay you a compliment. No reason to go all PMS on–ah, shit”
Her fury beats my shame to the punch. And it is a solid punch. Maybe she could kick my ass, I think, holding my face.
She stands up.
“Look, can’t people just be idiots sometimes?” I whimper.
She laughs, “idiots have had their time.”
She walks toward the door.
“Wait!” I get up and run after her. She’s outside when I catch up.
“Don’t you dare touch me,” she says, stopping, hand in her purse.
I hold up my arms.
“Look,” I try, “why do you have to be so damn aggressive?”
She crosses her arms, “some of us have to be the stone in the pond so that others might learn from the ripples,” she says.
I open my mouth, I close it.
“I’m sorry,” I try.
She laughs. My confusion and shame tap dance to the tune.
She walks off, giving me the finger.