(This was originally published in Missbehave Issue #3 Spring 2007, but we’re short on content this week because Jane and I are tired ok? Let us fucking live).

Note to self: Anytime someone says, “You go girl!” without a hint of irony, remember to flee the premises.

Let me tell you the gleeful tale behind this hard won advice. Here are some clues: pleated khakis, lonely secretaries, eau de desperation, small talk, and Apple-fucking-tinis. That’s right. I went speed dating.

I know. I really do. I know this is the last resort for lonely singles, regularly mocked on television and in film, a popular activity for those on social life support. And listen, while I may not have a brimming dance card, I have a host of other preferred pursuits – like flossing with guitar strings, or perhaps cutting my thigh with a rusty house key to feel the sweet, albeit temporary, release from inescapable hopelessness. You know, constructive things. I did protest but when pressed, my editor does this dead-on impression of an unmoving bitch. It’s really quite something. Therefore I find myself perusing a website entitled Hurrydate.com, whose pithy tag line reads “Cut to the Chase.” Sigh. I sign-up and do the same for my friend Robin whose wrath I will deal with later.

Wednesday rolls around and despite nightmares about hair-challenged mouth-breathers pawing at me over Pina Coladas (and worse, rejection by said baldies) I put on a push-up bra, throw back a vodka, and head over to Eat restaurant on Sunset. Robin, however, has mysteriously fallen ill. Although at press time she is much better. Karma, I’m sure, will issue an appropriate retort.

Upon arrival, I see a perky woman who I can only assume is our intrepid hostess holding a clipboard. I check in and she hands me a name tag and scorecard then rallies me with the cry mentioned at the beginning of this article. There may have been a fist pump. Then the bartender informs me that here are $5 appletinis for the “hurry daters.” I don’t do “tini” so I request a Jameson on the rocks, then make it a double. As my nausea subsides, I am jarred by the shrill squawk of a whistle. Clipboard lady is now soundly 35% more irritating. I am corralled, ice cubes clinking, to some tables, each distinguished by a letter of the alphabet. I take a seat and am joined by a guy (#33) who is actually kind of cute. Cute! Skies part. A hologram of my smiling mother descends to fare me well. I’m flooded with relief.

180 seconds of wretchedly inane chatter later, the whistle is blown, and #33 is replaced by #30, who has a perspiration problem. #34 has such a severe lazy eye that I stare squarely in the middle of both, #37 has written an online self-help book, #27 actually asks me what my “turn-ons” and “turn-offs” are, #21 is easily 48, and #40 passes our time foppishly complaining about the pressing need for heat lamps out here.

Exhausted and drunk, I await the last suitor. #38 sits, looking as horrified as I feel. Despite the shell shock, he is really hot. Fine, so he’s “in the Navy” and “can’t talk about his job,” and maybe he’s wearing Seven jeans but he is sorta charming. As he leaves, he slaps his name tag onto my sheet and says “Put me as your number one.” Seriously. So I do. And I ended up giving him the reverse cowgirl that night. Not really. But you totally would have. Skank.

Yasi Salek

About Yasi Salek

likes parentheses.