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Story Sent in by Kerry:

On my second date with David, we browsed a bookstore. As we strolled down an aisle, I noticed a large art book on a top shelf that was just out of my reach. He said, "Never fear," and he used a nearby ladder to climb up and retrieve it.

The ladder was really only meant for staff use, and a clerk swung by to say, "Sir, you can't be on there."

David had already grabbed the book by that point and as he descended, he told the clerk, "Well I got the book, so I win."

"It's not a question of winning, sir. It's a liability issue."

David said, "I don't really care. I won. I got the book. You can just shut up."

The clerk opened his mouth as if to say something, then left us there. I told David, "You didn't have to be that nasty."

David said, "I got you the book. Where's my thank-you?"

I wasn't about to push him further. I said, "Thank you," and flipped through the book.

He browsed around the area and I didn't pay him much mind until he grunted. I looked up. An older woman who I guessed to be a manager stormed down the aisle at us, with the clerk trailing behind. David grunted again, then grabbed a nearby shelf of books, ripped them all off the shelves so that they'd fly into the aisle, then turned to me, said, "Run!" and ran past me.

Instead of following him, I did hurry away, but to a cafe area where other patrons sat with books. The manager found me there and stuck a finger in my face, telling me I had to leave the store.

I yelled back at her that I had done nothing wrong and that she should ask her clerk if I had given anyone any trouble. The clerk was quick to pipe up that he only had the problem with David. The manager apologized, but I yelled back at her that she should have more respect for her patrons. Her nerve! Sticking a finger in my face like I'm some stupid delinquent.

The manager retreated and left me alone. I spent a little while longer browsing the art book then left.

David had waited for me outside. He asked, "Did they catch you?"

I said, "It was you they were after. Why'd you start with them in the first place?"

"Pardon me for doing something nice for you. And where is it?"

I explained to him that I hadn't bought the art book. I was only really interested in browsing it (it was $60!).

He said, "So I did all that for nothing? Whatever."

We had lunch at a nearby shopping center, but it was obvious he wasn't really into it. We said friendly goodbyes and never saw each other again.


Rear Admiral

Story Sent in by Mary:

Robert emailed me over OkCupid and I checked out his profile. It was nice and normal. Well, except that under "The most private thing I'm willing to admit," he wrote, "I LIKE LIKE LIKE IT IN THE BUTT."

But you see, the rest of his profile was pretty charming and humorous. It had to be some sort of dumb joke, a failed attempt at irony, or some other excuse I made for the poor guy. Anyway, we talked online, we spoke over the phone, and we finally met in person at a lounge in a bowling alley.

We sat down and the first five minutes were pretty close to ideal. We shared funny stories and kept each other laughing. He seemed like a sweet (if awkward) guy. Then he laced his fingers together and leaned forward.

"So, I'm a butt guy."

"Your profile said something about that. Good for you. A man should have a hobby."

"Mine's butts," he said. "They're sort of my thing."

"You're so lucky to have one."

"Want to see it?"

"No, thanks."

"Can I see yours?"

"Not right now."

"Want something to drink?"

"Yes, please."

He grabbed us beers and sat back down. We spoke for a bit longer and I asked him if he wanted to go bowl. He said, "Nah. Too much to do. Nice meeting you, though." He extended his hand and I shook it. He gave me a military salute and then marched away.

I honestly would've gone out with him again because he was just so endearingly bizarre. But I decided I'd wait to see if he called me, which he didn't. Likely for the best. I'm sure that any love he'd ever have for me wouldn't come close to his love for posteriors.


Great Scott

Story Sent in by Scott:

Janie showed up a half-hour late and already drunk. I couldn't believe she had driven over, in her state. But she had.

She gave me a sloppy hug then asked me, "What're we doing tonight?"

"Dinner. Maybe."

She paused in thought for far too long then asked, "What're we doing tonight?"

"Dinner. I think," I replied.

She looked up at a point in the sky and pointed. I looked where she was pointing and saw nothing. She said, "Then dinner it shall be!"

I asked, "Are you okay?"

After another several moments of deep thought, she said, "Yes!"

I was afraid that she'd make a loud, obnoxious fool of herself at dinner. Instead, she nodded off into her pasta. At one point she looked up at me and asked, "What're you up to?"

I said, "Having dinner. What are you up to?"

She replied, "Plotting."

"Plotting what?"

"To assassinate the last king of Scotland... WAIT!" she practically yelled.

"What? What?" I asked, expecting who-knows-what in response.

She laughed herself silly and said, "Oh my God. Your name is Scott..."


She pointed at me with the same finger she had previously used to point at sky-nothing and said, "GO BACK TO SCOTT-LAND!"

She leaned forward at that time and laughed again. Her hair grazed at her pasta sauce, but she didn't seem to care. I then excused myself to "go to the bathroom," but actually went to call her a taxi home. Granted, I didn't have her address, but I figured we'd cross that drunken bridge when we made it there.

When I made it back to the table, though, she was gone. Wandered off somewhere. Never saw her again. But I did pack up her mostly untouched dinner for myself. Even if it had touched her hair, we still need to eat back in Scott-land.


Run, Florist, Run

Story Sent in by Vicki:

Ralph gave me flowers on our first date. I was stunned, mostly because guys have almost never brought me flowers, much less on a very first time out together. I was very grateful.

We had a nice lunch. At the end of the date, Ralph held out his hand and I took it. He said, "No. The flowers."

I handed them to him, wondering what he was up to. As I did so, he looked overjoyed and said, "Flowers? For me? Thank you so much!"

He hugged them to himself and ran down the sidewalk and away from me without another word.

So I guess I only sort of got flowers on a first date.


Worm Your Way Out

Story Sent in by William:

I found Stacie on OKCupid. She was extremely attractive and her profile seemed sane. At dinner, she started out as bubbly and talkative and we had a good talk. I kinda liked her. But all of a sudden, in the middle of a conversation about something I can't remember, she clammed up. It was like she flipped a switch.

My first thought was that I offended her somehow. I asked her, "You okay?"

She said, "Yeah... just thinking about something."

"What are you thinking about?"

She said, "I'll tell you in a minute."

Five minutes of silence went by. The only sounds were our chewing. Finally, I couldn't take it anymore and I said, "What's up?"

She looked at me and asked, "Ever eaten live worms?"

I'm a vegetarian, but even if I wasn't I doubt I'd ever eat a live worm. I said, "No."

She said, "Because I know a place we can go. If you save room for after dinner, we can go there."

" eat live worms? No, thank you."

She looked down, as if I had really disappointed her. Then she looked up at me and asked again, "Ever eaten live worms?"

I reminded her, "We just talked about this. Remember? I said no. I don't think I'd be interested in trying them, either. I'm a vegetarian."

"So are worms," she said.

That's not really true, but I wanted to stop talking about worms. I said, "Have you ever tried the desserts here? They're all made in-house."

She asked, "Do they taste like live worms?" and she licked her lips.

I said, "I'm pretty sure the cheesecake tastes like cheesecake. But you can ask them if they have another flavor."

When the waiter asked us if we wanted dessert, Stacie indeed asked him if they had "anything that tasted like live worms." He gave me a look as if I had inadvertently brought a plague carrier into the restaurant.

I told the waiter, "Just the check, thanks."

Stacie and I split the meal and she asked me if I wanted to go with her to her "favorite dessert place." Again, she licked her lips. I shuddered and suddenly had someplace else to be. She seemed sad to hear it, but I felt worse for whatever worms she was to encounter. We didn't go out ever again.