Story Submitted by Stella:
I had recently moved cross-country to Miami for grad school and met James through an online dating service. He was good-looking in a suntanned surfer way, witty, and a great date. He was also a California transplant like me. He worked as a boat captain for a charter company, and lived on the boat in a marina.
On our second date, he took me to the marina to see the boat. He showed great pride in how he maintained it and talked enthusiastically about his job. He also mentioned he had a difficult time dating women from Miami because he didn't make much money or own the boat.
I didn't care how much money he made or that he was "just" the captain, I thought he was a pretty sweet, laid-back kind of guy. So, after our third date, when he asked "Would you be interested in having me cook dinner for you tomorrow and spend the night with me on the boat?" I didn't hesitate. Oh yeah buddy, I'm there.
The next day arrived and I was a little nervous, but looking forward to the evening. I arrived at the marina, and James came out to the security booth to get a pass so I could park in the private lot.
As we walked to the boat, I could tell something was off. He was jittery and distracted. I figured he was just nervous, too.
He poured me some wine, but I could see that nothing was cooking in the galley. I was a little hungry at this point, but no big deal. He kept jumping up to go "do stuff" like cleaning up magazines and papers. Our usual banter wasn't flowing, and he was obviously on edge.
After about an hour, I asked if he'd like some help to get dinner started. He said no, poured more wine and led me to the deck, which had a beautiful view of the marina. No complaints, but he kept jumping up, rushing around and doing little odd jobs.
After another hour or so, I started to really get hungry and said, "Hey, how about we start dinner?"
"No!" he shouted, "I'm not hungry! How many times do I have to tell you?" He went back below deck, and I followed him.
I said, "It doesn't seem like you're feeling it right now, so I can head home if you want."
He flopped down into a chair and spoke in a rush. "I ate before you got here. A friend came by this afternoon and we did a few lines and ate pizza."
"Lines? Of coke? How often do you do that?"
"Hardly ever. Just a few times a week. I'm not hungry. For dinner, at least," and he massaged his crotch to clarify his point.
I excused myself and went topside to think. Was I being too judgmental or was this an absolutely ridiculous situation? When did I time travel back to the 1980s? What should I do? Should I leave? What the hell? And how did I get myself into this?
I decided to go, called down to say goodbye, and headed for my car.
As I got to my car, I heard him running to catch up. I turned, thinking I was about to get an apology or an explanation. But it turned out he just wanted to make sure I returned the parking pass to the security guard.
And, no, I never saw him again after that.
Story Submitted by Stella: