Writing left handed

Date #13

It’s 5:00 and I’m back at Café Fulya, killing time before Date #13’s arrival.  I’m wearing flats because the last time I saw Date #13 (yes, we’ve met before), he was sitting in the front row of the Freehold Borough Little League team photo.  Even though I was just six years old then, I was already standing in the back row with the tall kids.  I find it hard to believe that there was a time when I preferred baseball cleats to heels (especially since it seems I’ve been strutting around Philadelphia in stilettos for years now) but evidently, there was.

It was during this period that I met Date #13.  He was shorter than me then, as he had been in first grade and as he would be all through elementary school (after which I started homeschooling; I don’t think I would’ve ever seen Date #13 again if not for the fact that he and my younger brother were in Boy Scouts together).

I know that most guys experience their growth spurts at a later age than their female counterparts, and that Date #13 might have passed me by now, but since he doesn’t come with benefit of a Match.com profile, I’m not taking any chances.  And since he’s nice enough to drive to Philly all the way from New Jersey just to take me out, I figure the least I can do is forego the high heels for tonight.

(This is strictly for Date #13’s benefit and not because the past week has afforded me nine blisters.  Nine! I gave up on dancing en pointe for less.)

Strictly speaking, tonight’s date is for “old time’s sake” although it’s been in the works for over a year now.  It all started when I was living in London.  I was in my dorm one night, cruising Facebook, when a message popped up.

“You’re in London!”  It was my old Little League teammate, aka Date #13.

“Yeah,” I typed back, “grad school.”

After a few minutes of small talk (during which I established that Date #13 was still living in New Jersey in the very same town in which we’d grown up), he lowered the boom: So you know how your brother and I were in the same Boy Scout Troop?

Yes, Date #13.  How could I forget?  As the eldest Richter child and the first to obtain a driver’s license, I waited in the parking lot for my brother after many a Boy Scout meeting.  It was cool the first time— you mean I get to take the car, drive across town and just sit there amongst dozens of Freehold’s finest Eagle Scout candidates?  Yes please!— but it quickly got old.  There’s a reason the boys in my brother’s troop never made it onto the cover of Boy Scout Magazine.  They were (with the possible exceptions of my brother, Date #13 and a reasonably good looking high school senior) all either ugly, overweight, immature, or all of the above.

Well, Date #13 continued typing, your brother told me you used to have a crush on me.

Did he now?

I made a mental note to clobber him (my brother, not Date #13) the next time we were actually in the same country because as far as I can recall, I never said this.  I might have said that Date #13 was funny, or a nice guy (both of which are true) but I really don’t think I liked him like that.  (Did I?)

Unfortunately, my little brother did have a growth spurt during his Boy Scout years; when he left for two weeks of Philmont backpacking, he was shorter than me.  When he came back, he wasn’t, and just like that, I lost the ability to clobber him.

Long story short, Date #13 has been angling to meet me for a drink “for old time’s sake” (never mind that we lived in the same town all through high school and never once got together).  I’ve been told by date #13 and by others from my New Jersey days that the years have treated me well, and I suppose they have.  Thanks to Baltimore, Boston, London, Oxford and finally Philadelphia, I’m no longer the awkward girl I was in sixth grade (I wear jeans now, for example).  And since I’m in need of men to date, I finally said yes.

I did warn him (“You know I’m going out with like a hundred guys right now, right?”  He replied, “Yeah, I’m reading your blog.  So when you gonna squeeze me in?”)

At seven o’clock on Monday night, Date #13, that’s when.

At 6:30, however, I get a text.  He’s arrived, which makes him half an hour early!  This is a nice surprise, especially after Date #9 kept me waiting for 20 twenty minutes and I’m absolutely thrilled by the thought of getting to bed at a decent hour.  We decide on Jon’s for dinner and as we make our way up South Street, I realize that not much has changed about Date #13.  He’s still a nice guy, he still cracks me up and he’s still, well… it’s a good thing I wore flats.

But then we get to the restaurant, head out to table on the deck and Date #13 actually pulls out my chair!  I’m floored.  I don’t think Date #4 even pulled out my chair for me.

“I have 32 female cousins,” Date #13 informs me.  “I treat all women the way I want guys to treat them.”

Well now, there’s a nice boy.  Or a nice man, I should say; we’re not six year olds in t-ball uniforms any more.

16 Responses to “Date #13”

  1. kay

    hey – number 3 sounds like a keeper! enjoying the blog – please check out mine when you get 5 mins – i’m a london girl too – now living by the sea.keep typing!

  2. morgangreenster

    I’ve done some research and in the future women really will be more desperate for men. Birth rates are now in many places in the US three girls for every male. Also the male y chromosome is supposed to be mutating almost half of its genes which reduces the real men out there. Not only that but women are adapting much better to the modern world and succeeding much more often then men who often end up in jail or prison and have a criminal history. So if you find yourself a good man count yourself as very lucky and not the princess who should have the best in life.

  3. ragrobyn

    Great guys aren’t pirates or ballplayers, they are kind, empathetic and loyal. Does it worry you that your project might be jepardizing the possiblity of finding that fabulous guy so quickly? I think that if you are kind, empathetic and loyal, finding the right guy will happen. For selfish reasons, I don’t want this project to end. I’m having to much fun. AND from experience, marriage is over rated.

  4. sarahnsh

    I love when they get the door for you and the chair and stuff, but a part of me doesn’t want to let them get it for me. I’ve been known to race a date who always gets the door for me so I can grab it first and give them a taunting smile while I hold it for them. It sounds like this was a good time though and like it was probably nice catching up too.

  5. morgangreenster

    Great male stereotypes: Sex maniac perverts, anger is pretty much the only emotion, money is an obsession that he will do anything for, can’t cry, can’t express, feelings, can’t show feminine side, workalohic, likes bars, likes football and violent sports, secretly or not secretly into nasty porn, doesn’t know what love is, has a monstrous ego, votes republican, enjoys being a bully, doesn’t read much, has a terrible sense of fashion or no clue what fashion is, is clueless.

    It almost sounds like a racist profile doesn’t it.

    • Kat Richter

      Yes, it does. Which is why sterotypes and racism often go hand in hand. I wouldn’t say there was anything “great” about male stereotypes and I like to hope, that in a very small way, stories such as “Date#13 actually pulled out my chair” might help to dispel a few myths about the male sex…

  6. Dennis Hong

    Damn. I thought you were saying that he pulled out your chair from under you as you were trying to sit in it. THAT would’ve been funny. And THAT’s what friends of brothers are supposed to do, ya know….

    I’m cracking up just picturing it in my mind. :-p

  7. classiqur

    Oh my garsh what a cliffhanger to leave your blog on. How did it go??? What happened after, will there ba a Date #13 round 2??? So many questions arghhhh!

    I never watched the series, but this whole dating saga is very ‘sex and the city’ (angry satc mob please do not kill me, I’m young!!!) And I think that this experiment is intriguing, however I warn you, woman to woman, be careful. Although you’re blogging about everything its still the internet and a lot of weirdos go on those dating sites. And the very fact u are blogging may attract unsavoury attention.

    I am not putting a downer on you, but sometimes it just takes a message like this to nudge u to be that bit more precautious-not that you aren’t already.

    Anyways, can’t wait to hear your next blog!!!

    Check mine out if you can.

  8. Tech Support

    First off, I’m not sure I ever said that. I think he made it up to see what your reaction is. Go out with him again, he’s a nice guy.

  9. New Month, New Men, New Math | After I Quit My Day Job

    […] Date #13 (my old T-ball teammate) treated me to a lovely dinner on South Street, complete with copious gossip about former classmates, and even though we’re not destined to become Freehold Learning Center’s “it” couple, he’s been in touch a few times  and sends me funny text messages, mainly to point out Date #9’s shortcomings. […]


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