Man, oh man! You like me! Right now I can’t deny that you like me! After all these years, all the dates you must have gone on, happily married, with kids of your own, I thought you’d forgotten me. But here I am winning this, your worst date ever recognition; A lifetime achievement award, if you will!
I should have prepared a speech but, as you know, I never planned anything! Including our date! As I recall, you told me you hadn’t planned on saying ‘yes’ to the date, either, but we all do things we regret in our late teens.
I would not be standing here today without the lack of charm and insensitivity that stands out in the dating panoply. Also ignorance, narcissism and misogyny. Would any other guy have been right there, like a jackal on a lion’s fresh kill, after you and my best friend broke up? The idea of rebound sex never entered my mind.
Could I have made the easy choices? Sure. But I’m an artist, classically trained. By Neanderthals. I could have chosen to make dinner reservations. But then I would have missed the look of horror on your face when I sat down at the recently vacated table in the pizza joint and started eating their leftovers.
Thank you for believing in me when I told you I could get underage you into a dive bar by telling everyone you were the stripper for the bachelor party. I am grateful from the bottom of my heart which, according to you, is somewhere near my groin area.
Thank you for your encouragement. Without you muttering ‘please, please, don’t quit now…’ we wouldn’t have made it almost to the other side of the bridge before my car’s alternator failed. I also would not be standing here today, literally, if you hadn’t been nimble enough to push me out of the way just before two cars, trying to avoid us, hooked-up rather abruptly and caused a four-mile freeway back-up.
Just when you thought our date had reached its nihilistic existential boundaries, I stopped a car to arrange your ride home. I could have overlooked the empty beer cans that clattered onto the road when I opened the door. I also could have overlooked that the driver’s date had her face in the driver’s lap doing things to him that men only get on special occasions. You couldn’t, however. I can’t help but feel these put me over the top in deserving this award.
And thank you for deciding that swimming across the lake through a gaggle of aggressive geese while dragging a purse would be safer than waiting for me to take you home. I’m still awed by your method acting. And your swimming.
This award is not about how many times you get rejected; It’s about how many times I can talk a woman into going out with me! Life is unpredictable, just like me! What if I forget my wallet, forget to put gas in the car, or forget the date altogether? My craft is finding a woman who can remember everything except my failings.
This moment is so much bigger than me. I’d like to thank my fellow nominees: The guy who invited you on a date, ordered the most expensive food and wine, then sent everything back while berating the staff—classic move! The guy who came over to watch the Super Bowl, then got so drunk that he mistook your kitchen for the bathroom and peed on the oven door—you never cease to amaze me! Finally, the guy on that dating app who seemed like such a nice guy and then sent you a dick pic—I love you! We’re all winners, really and you continue to inspire me.
I’d like to dedicate this award to my parents, who thought they brought me up better, and to all those women who turned me down. See what you missed? This is a moment of pride and I want to kiss everyone, even though I understand I’m not supposed to do that anymore. I’m filled with gratitude. Also bullshit.
Thank you! I love you! And to all those out there still looking for that special someone, just know that you’re one date away from finding your soul mate. At least that’s what I keep telling myself.