I once had this friend who was into collecting gym memberships and bodybuilding competitions and flexing in front of mirrors. Actually, he was more like a friend of a friend. Individually, this guy’s arms were bigger than the width of my entire body. To be fair, this all went down when MTV’s Jersey Shore was pulling some of the highest ratings on television, so the over-sized veiny gorilla look was actually quite popular where I’m from.
Anyway, one summer night we were both at a party when the subject of horror movies was brought up. I, of course, went on a ten-minute rant, obsessing over a few eighties classics, making geeky comments about some of my favorites. Apparently, this guy was listening in, and when he texted me a few days later to see if I wanted to check out the latest horror flick to hit theaters, I thought it was more of a friendly night out between two genre-loving dorks hoping to catch some gore and overacted death scenes on the big screen.
So, I call this an accidental date because that’s precisely what it was. I wasn’t even positive I went on a date with this guy until after the fact when I heard through the grapevine how awful it was. Using the word “awful” to describe how that evening went was certainly putting it nicely, but if you’re going to ask someone on a date, call it a fucking date! Don’t ask them to “hang out” or to “do something” and then act all confused when they shoot you down if you try to take things out of the friendzone.
What made this accidental date worse than awful was that, for some reason, this guy never looked up movie times for the flick we planned to see. Maybe he thought I’d suddenly be into him if the night was more casual and spontaneous, but I wasn’t. Especially since we walked into the theater and saw that they weren’t even playing the damn movie I wanted to see. So, we ended up spending most of the night sitting in a parking lot trying to look up movie times on our not-so-smart smartphones. Well, I did at least. He, on the other hand, thought it would be best to drive from theater to theater in hope of finding one that was playing the movie. Talk about frustrating.
An hour and a half later, my POS phone informed me that this particular horror flick was only playing in select theatres and wouldn’t be showing in our area for another week. Fuck.
By the time we found a theater playing something we were both willing to sit through, we ended up at the shady theater in three towns over. The one that used to be where all of my friends went to make out with their boyfriends in high school but had since become known for being a spot where teens would either stab each other to death or screw on the mattress someone dragged into the woods nearby. Needless to say, the theater was shut down a few days later for those very reasons, and that shit evening was probably the most suitable farewell to the movie theater I grew up going to I could have ever orchestrated.
Since nothing that evening was planned properly, we had a ton of time to kill before the movie started. To avoid the awkwardness (and annoyance) of listening to him apologize over and over about how our night was going, I suggested a walk to the grocery store across the street to kill time before the flick started.
I don’t usually get snacks at the movies. They’re far too expensive and it’s not like you can exactly press pause when you need to take a piss and with my tiny bladder, even a sip of soda means I’ll either be missing a crucial part of the film’s conclusion or crossing my legs in unbearable pain trying to hold it in. Regardless, at this point of our date, I would have done just about anything to avoid sitting in another damn parking lot for another damn minute, including hiding a bottle of water and some Reese’s Pieces into my purse.
Of course, he didn’t get anything. Apparently consuming even a bit of sugar would ruin his perfect physique, but it was for the best. I had enough jammed in my purse as it was.
The downfall of the night occurred when we finally got into the theatre and he laid his massive arm on my shoulder halfway through the shit movie we ended up seeing. Not only did it reveal his intentions for that evening, intentions I had been unaware of until that moment, but his arm was so big I had to hunch over in my seat just so it could fit behind me. Not to mention the agonizing pain my neck and shoulders were in for days after.
In the end, we silently agreed not to see each other again. Our friendship was ultimately ruined, but we really weren’t all that close anyway. I actually don’t think I ever saw him again. Hopefully, he has found the woman of his dreams, likely one doesn’t mind sitting in parking lots for hours on end or the weight of his mammoth arms on her shoulders.
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