Four Queens and a Funeral Director?
After last week’s fiasco at Starbucks with the married man I decided that I would not focus on dating and channel all my energy on my work and my body. Having stepped up my workout regime in an effort to not only feel good but also look good for this week’s fundraiser. I have been doing everything in my power to avoid the naughty foods.
The fundraiser in mention is one I wrote about in last week’s entry; it is for the Freedom To Get Married. Again, if you haven’t bought your tickets yet, there is still time. It is this Thursday at the new XL bar on 42nd Street. The turn out is going to be a fabulous one indeed with Broadway stars, Chopin cocktails (yum) and killer music spun by DJ Vito Fun. Please take a moment to go visit the link and get a damn ticket:
I am actually looking forward to this fundraiser for a few reasons. One. It is for a great cause and given this past week’s progression with Prop 8; I predict it really will have everyone in good sprits. Second. This event is for all the single hopefuls, myself included, in which we will hopefully meet someone amazing. And at least we will already know that we have one thing in common and that being the right for marriage equality.
Having not had an actual Valentine in more years than I care to admit, I began to think of where my life was this time last year. It wasn’t all that different to where I am right now with regards to my dating life. While I am still not sure if that is a good thing or a bad thing, I do know that I did the right thing.
You see…around this time last year I gathered three of my friends on a Saturday night to go out get drunk and celebrate absolutely nothing. We went to a bar in Hells Kitchen called, Industry, and there we proceeded to get pretty damn tipsy. After living in New York for a number of years and being fortunate to have an amazing set of friends who also love to go out; the chances of running into one of them when we go out is very likely. And this particular Saturday night was no exception. As it was my turn to get the next round of drinks, by the time I came back one of my friends had seen another one of their friends. Now the party was beginning to expand and for me, that is never a problem, the more the merrier as far as I was concerned that night.
Once everyone went around the table with introductions. I noticed that there was someone that I actually found…well…handsome. He fit the bill. He was tall, handsome and as soon as he shook my hand quickly asked if I wanted a drink. Seeing that I just bought a round for my friends I didn’t need a drink but it was a good way to begin the pre-dating game questions. This game can be rather tricky and you have to play it correctly. It is a game where you have to ask a minimum of five questions that you want to know right away and those questions usually consist of the following:
- Name (first and last…for research purposes)
- What area do they live
- Single, Attached or are they in a relationship that is open and they have their own set of rules
- And if you are still interested after hearing the above questions; there is the exchange of information, i.e. phone, email or the ever so romantic…Facebook
With this pre-dating game, the key is to never stay too long at the fair. Leave them wanting to find out more about you. It is a proven fact that men are hunters. If there is no chasing/hunting occurring, especially in the beginning, they will lose interest and move on.
As I played the game with this new man and found out all I needed to know, I quickly discovered that he was interested in me. I gave my friend who introduced us all, the look that we either need to change location within the bar or leave all together. We decided it was late, we were already drunk and that we should call it a night. I took my time to get my coat so that the new man could see that we were leaving and that would give him enough time to get the balls to ask for my number. Turns out, I played my cards just right and as I was zipping up my coat, he asked me for my number and said he would call me the next day to find out a time when we could go to dinner. In the dating world, a Saturday night like that is what we call a major success.
The next day, nursing yet another hangover, I waited all afternoon to get “the call” and it never happened. I was in disbelief, we had a great first conversation, the flirting was there and he even asked for my number, how could this dude not call? Finally, around 7pm that evening, the phone rang and I gave it till three rings so that I didn’t answer on the first ring, I mean, he doesn’t need to know that I was waiting by the phone all day long. I answered the phone very casually and there we had a rather pleasant chat and as it was winding down, I kept thinking in the back of my head, “is this guy going to ask me out?” He asked what kind of food I liked and said if my schedule allowed that he would like to take me out to dinner that Wednesday. Success! I was quite excited to see how this date was going to pan out.
Wednesday. The day of the date came and I was all ready to go out with the new man. I knew from our pre-dating game that he lived in the Bronx and he isn’t that much of a drinker so he would be driving into the city and would only allow himself one cocktail since he was driving. After he found a parking space he picked me up at my apartment and from there we walked down 9th Avenue to find a restaurant that we both agreed upon. It was actually snowing pretty heavily that night so we pretty much ran into the first spot that we both liked. As we got settled, I ordered a red wine and he ordered an orange juice and vodka. As we toasted to our first date it was time to start getting to know this guy. I discovered that he was born and raised in the Bronx. He was an only child and had two serious relationships under his belt. The last relationship was one where him and his partner got two dogs; he got the dogs in the custody battle. He went on about his dogs as if they were his children. Showing me pictures of them on his phone and telling me how long it took to house train them. While I am all for people loving their pets, it does tend to concern me when they treat them like humans. So, I had to change the topic from wee-wee pads to what he actually did for a living for that was one question I didn’t get answered when we first met.
His occupation is one that I was not at all prepared for. He told me that he is a funeral director. I am very fortunate in my life to be one of these people that do not have much experience with funerals and the idea of death freaks me out. So when I found this out, I decided to not be a big baby and learn more. It is a family business and he was next in line to be the director and so he took the opportunity. The more I observed from F.D. aka Funeral Director; I noticed his lack of sensitivity when he talked about anything, except of course when he was talking about his dogs. It occurred to me that one would need to not be a sensitive person if your daily job was handling grief; I took this new learning with a grain of salt and to not be so sensitive when it came to F.D.
As the dinner was winding down and the weather was getting worse, he said that he was rather smitten with me and would like to see me again. So we decided to see each other that Saturday night. I wasn’t sure how I felt about him based on the first date but most first dates are awkward anyhow, so, I told myself to be open-minded and see him again for a second date. He walked me home, gave me a nice polite kiss on the lips and off into the snowstorm he went.
Saturday presented itself and we were off to dinner and drinks. He drove into the city and again we were walking down 9th Avenue where we decided to try out this Turkish restaurant. As we ordered our kabobs, he asked some of my lofty future goals when it came to relationships. At this stage in my life, I no longer fear of telling a potential future partner what it is that I am looking for in a relationship, especially if they are the ones that asked the question. So I told him what I was looking for. I told him I was looking for monogamy, marriage and eventually a child. As soon as the word, “child”, left my mouth, his fork literally left his hand and hit his plate. It was as if I told him that one of his precious dogs had become terminally ill. He became rather unglued, and he actually started to embarrass me for he got loud and began to tell me how much he hates children how he would rather travel the world than have a child and how disappointed he was in me for wanting to have one. It was right than and there I told myself to not back down from his erratic behavior and to change the subject; I mean it is not like this baby that I want was on it’s way being delivered. After calming him down and explaining to him that yes, I do want a child but not anytime soon and to please drop the topic; he was back to being normal.
Doing my best to get this date back on track, after dinner I suggested we walk a little and eventually we ended up in a local pub called, Ninth Avenue Saloon. We both ordered beers and he wasn’t talking, in fact, he was actually acting like a child himself by pouting. I told him, for the last time that his reaction to what I said was rather immature especially since this is literally only our second date and to please just relax and enjoy the moment. He eventually agreed with me and there he kissed me. I was happy to have gotten back on track and began to enjoy myself again with hearing about his travels all over the world, his dogs (sigh) and the kissing. It was getting late and he actually had a funeral the next day that he needed to direct so we called it a night. He walked me to my door, we kissed for several minutes and he said, “While I am severely upset at the fact that you want a child, I do like you and would like to see you again.” It was a backwards compliment but I agreed to see him again. I went upstairs to my apartment and thought that after his reaction, it made me want a child even more. Not to be spiteful but simply because it is something I have always wanted and no one is going to make me feel bad about it.
A week had gone by and we kept in touch via phone calls and texting and eventually we both settled on seeing each other on Friday night. The idea for this date was that I was going to go to his apartment and he was going to cook us dinner. Now we all know what this date usually means. When someone invites you to their home and is going to cook you dinner, food is not the only thing that will be on the menu. This encounter is also known as, The Sex Date. I wasn’t sure about whether or not I wanted to have sex with F.D. but I wanted to give this guy one more chance.
That Friday turned out to be a rather hectic day at work. F.D. called and told me that he would be driving in from Brooklyn and could pick me up when I was ready. From there we would go up to where he lived, for I really had no idea how to get there. I did my best to get out on time from work so I could run home, shower and be ready to be picked up. My plan didn’t turn out entirely how I wanted to because I was running late. He called to ask how much time I would need before he could pick me up. I told him about an hour and again, he flipped out on me. He said that it is not normal to need that much time to get ready. I got defensive and told him that I need an hour and if that wasn’t good enough that I could take the train or we could cancel all together but I needed that hour. Period. He continued to get pissy with me and told me that he was going to get a massage by his masseur who happens to also give him “happy endings” at the end of his massage, while he waited for me to get ready. I wasn’t sure if he was joking or not but I told him, either he can pick me up in an hour or not because I really didn’t care for his jokes or attitude. He told me to just be ready in an hour and hung up. I don’t know if he ever got his “massage” or not.
I was ready within the hour but I purposely did not pack a toothbrush, change of clothes or any of my nightly potions. I wasn’t even sure I was going to spend the night given how this evening was already turning out. He called to tell me he is downstairs, I took a deep breath and headed down. As I walked off my stoop, there he was…in a silver hearse!!!! I felt my knees instantly lock. I didn’t want to get in, I was scared, I was nervous and he was honking his horn aggressively to basically say, “Get your ass in the damn car already.”
This was a rather fancy hearse. It had all these computer monitors on the dashboard and it even talked to you. However, these things did not impress me whatsoever. I asked F.D. as we drove along the Westside Highway why he was driving this and not his regular car. My biggest fear was that there was a body in the back. Turns out…my biggest fear became a reality; there was a body in the back! He picked the body up in Brooklyn and in front with us were the clothes that this person was to be buried in the next day. He told me to take a peak at the clothes. So I opened the bag and inside was a sequence denim jacket and matching jeans. The dead person in question was a gay man that loved sparkles and apparently his partner made him the outfit with his Bedazzler to be buried in, per the deceased request.
I didn’t say much else in the car for I was still in disbelief that I am being driven down the Westside Highway in a hearse with a corpse in the back. We finally get to his apartment and this is where things get even more bizarre for me. F.D. actually lives in the funeral home. As we backed the hearse into a garage I learned that this home consisted of three floors. Bottom floor was the garage and where the bodies are kept. Second floor was where the funeral’s where actually held and the top floor was where he lived. I never climbed flights of stairs so fast in my life. I practically flew to the top floor for I didn’t want to see one thing that resembled a funeral or a dead body.
Once inside the top floor it was huge and of course there were the dogs that greeted us both. As I began to get the tour of the home I noticed there were phones everywhere, there was even a phone inside the shower. I asked him why there were so many phones and he explained that he could get a call at anytime of the day. He must take the call no matter what he is doing because it is a business and people pass away at all hours of the day and needs to be there for them for they could take their business elsewhere.
After getting the tour and just feeling terribly uncomfortable. I decided that I would not be having sex with F.D. and also I would no longer want to see him. In fact, I wanted to go home. This lifestyle was just not for me. As he got settled, he completely ignored me and only focused on the dogs. By the time he had walked the dogs and even given them a bath, it was rather late and the chances of me getting on a train from the Bronx to home didn’t seem like a smart idea. So, I made the best of my situation and asked if he wanted help with cooking dinner. He told me he is too tired to cook and we are going to order Chinese food instead. We sat in silence as we ate the take-out and he watched Star Trek.
Once we were done eating and the show was over, he told me he was tired and we should go to bed for he has a funeral the next day and is also going to be hanging out with a friend. I had no problems with going to bed for I knew the faster I went to bed the next day would arrive and I could get the hell out of the funeral home and back to my world.
As we got in bed I had a sneaking suspicion that it would not be just the two of us in the bed. In the bed were F.D., the two dogs and I. The dogs were very protective over him so the dogs slept in between us. I turned my back to him and the dogs and the lights went off. I was also relieved that there was no pressure of sex because it simply was not going to happen. Ever.
The next morning the phone rang at 6:30. I thought it was someone calling for a funeral. No. Turns out, it was his best friend calling to confirm their plans to hang out. I asked why this person was calling so damn early on a Saturday morning. He explained that his best friend is a 75-year-old woman named Mildred and that she was on her way in a half hour and that I should get my stuff ready to go. He got up and walked the dogs. While he walked the dogs, I got up, splashed some cold water on my face and got my shit together.
After he got back from walking the dogs he asked me to sit down and said, “I don’t think this is going to work out. You are great, cute, and funny but you want children. I don’t. And I don’t think we have a future here. However, we do have a few minutes before Mildred arrives if you want to have sex.” I finally hit my limit with this guy and told him that regardless of the fact that I want a child there was no future here period and sex is not even an option.
As he showed me down onto the street, there was Mildred pushing her walker and getting ready to go grocery shopping. It was rather awkward. There we all were standing on the street was me, F.D. and good old Mildred. I had nothing left to say to him, so I shook Mildred’s hand and asked her where the nearest train station was. She pointed out that it was literally a block away. I thanked her for the directions, turned around and kept walking and not looking back.
I never heard from F.D. again and I was grateful for that. Which brings me to where I am today. Clearly, I dodged a bullet with the funeral director and am glad that I didn’t change what I want out of life just to date someone. In any relationship there are those moments of learning to pick your battles and it is an art form in itself.
This is the week where Hallmark tells you to buy the flowers; the candy and pay extra for those fancy restaurants. So I would like to dedicate this to all hopefuls and may cupid’s arrow find it’s way to all those believers in true love. However, a word to the wise…if a date picks you up and the car happens to be a hearse. Please don’t get in.
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