Imagine This Guy Building a Bridge

Story Sent in by Carolyn:

I met Dean off of Craigslist (I know, I know, I know) and he showed up to our restaurant date wearing a macaroni necklace. I was in my early 40s, he was in his mid-40s. When I asked him about the necklace, he said, "I made it earlier today."

I asked, "At work?" He had told me, via email, that he was a structural engineer.

He nodded. "I made them with my second graders."

"There are a lot of second graders in structural engineering?"

He replied, "I substitute-taught today."

Just to make sure I had things straight, I said, "So you're an engineer and you sub? That must keep you pretty busy."

He looked away, like he was trying to figure something out, then said, "Yeah, I substitute... I substitute teach...? Wait, I... hmmm."

He put his hands palm-down on the table, then pressed down hard on them.

"Structural coefficients faulty," he muttered, "Table not sound. Energy down. Energy down. Energy... energy... energy..."

He trailed off and stared into space. I leaned in, a bit frightened, and asked, "Dean? You okay?"

At that moment, the waitress came by to ask for our drink orders. I ordered a Pepsi. When she turned to Dean, she asked him, "And you, sir?"

He exploded at her, "Energy!"

She cried out and cringed back. He then stood up and said to me, in an apologetic tone, "I should go," and then he left, squeezing my shoulder as he passed, on his way out.

The waitress and I exchanged confused looks. I apologized to her, explained the situation, told her I'd still take the Pepsi, and ended up leaving her a colossal tip.

Never any further word from Dean the "engineer."


  1. Possibly the best first line I've read in a while. Thanks.

  2. See, that's why Ripley never dated Ash.

  3. Carolyn, are you a cougar? I like cougars...


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.

Content Policy

A Bad Case of the Dates reserves the right to publish or not publish any submitted content at any time, and by submitting content to A Bad Case of the Dates, you retain original copyright, but are granting us the right to post, edit, and/or republish your content forever and in any media throughout the universe. If Zeta Reticulans come down from their home planet to harvest bad dating stories, you could become an intergalactic megastar. Go you!

A Bad Case of the Dates is not responsible for user comments. We also reserve the right to delete any comments at any time and for any reason. We're hoping to not have to, though.

Aching to reach us? abadcaseofthedates at gmail dot com.