Sunday, March 13, 2011


When the 11:40 local train to Stamford jerked forward, the inertia sent me stumbling into a seated young man.
“Long night?” he asked, sensing my frustration.
“Yeah, a bit,” I chuckled.  “You?”
“Very” He said.  “What brings you to New York City?”
“A second date” I sighed as I searched for my Metro-North ticket.  The boy laughed.
“Will there be a third?”

There will not be a third.  And I’m very disappointed. 

As you may remember, Marathon Man’s debut showed great promise.  Though he left his 'macho' at home, I was still very excited to see what would come of our next date.

This evening, we planned to grab sushi at Nobu and see a jazz show at the famous Village Vanguard.  He claimed to have the night timed to perfection!  In fact, he texted several times to stress the importance of my punctuality.  So, as to not jeopardize our reservations, I got ready early and hopped the 5:54.

He was late.

Our greeting was awkward:  He came in for the big kiss and I offered my cheek instead.   Embarrassed, I fumbled for a smooth recovery.

“So where are we headed?” I asked.

He didn’t know.

Several moments later, we were still waiting for his tele-nav to kick in.  In the interest of time however, we eventually decided to cab it. 

We were finally Nobu-bound!  I just knew this date would improve once all the transit nonsense was behind us.

“Welcome to Nobu, do you have a reservation?”

We didn’t.

Luckily, we were able to get a table relatively quickly.  Okay, so here we go… cue the chemistry, right?

“So, what do you think of Jersey City?” he asked.
“Um, oh… I’ve never been there.”
“Yeah, but what do you THINK of it?” he asked again.
“Uhh, I… I really don’t know.”
“Because you know, people have some pre-conceived notions about Jersey City” he said, his face begging for a response. 
“…Well, I don’t.  I’m sure it’s nice.” I said, smiling.

I felt terrible.  I mean, this race had just started and already Marathon Man was losing steam.  Was I making him nervous?  What was going on here?  Nice Alex quickly appeared over my right shoulder and told me to try harder.

So for the next hour, I ignored his frequent watch glancing, laughed at his jokes, and pretended not to notice that he was repeating all the questions from date number one.  By the time we left for the Vanguard, I was exhausted!
“Sir, why didn’t you just take 7th?” asked Marathon Man with a twinge of condescension.
“How could we have taken 7th when it’s a one way going the wrong way??” the cabby shot back.
“It’s not a one way going the wrong way” he whispered to me.

It was.

But it didn't matter, we had arrived!  I was finally going to see a show at the Vanguard---the place where over 100 live albums had been recorded by such artists as Wynton Marsalis, John Coltrane, Dexter Gordon, Barbra Streisand, Brad Mehldau…etc.  Surely nothing could go wrong here, the sacred home of a musical genre we both claimed to love!

 “I’m so bored” he said, leaning in half-way through The Paul Motian Trio’s first set.


 “Wow,” my train buddy interjected. “That’s a bad date.”
 “I know,” I wept.  “And I had such high hopes!”

It was just then that I noticed this boy’s broad shoulders, his deep voice, his blue eyes, his law books, his sense of humor, his straight teeth…

“I’m Alex by the way.”
“Devon” he replied, shaking my hand.

And just before I could inquire further, it was my stop.


  1. From Edel - Love it! Sunday morning,.read 1) my daily bible verse, read 2) this super awesome blog!

  2. Awwww - I told your mother that I didn't like Marathon Man after the first date. So sorry I was right!

  3. You could always have the guys submit a pre-date essay telling what their idea of a perfect date is and what topics they love discussing...AND eliminate anyone who answers "Jersey City"!!

  4. Well, you gave it a second shot. You owed it to yourself to give him another try at bat. DO you think you'll be up for a third turn at bat w/ marathon man? If not, then you've have two relatively nice evenings out.

  5. Wow, marathon man was definitely running out of steam.. Maybe you will run into that Devon guy again; he sounded more relaxed and sure of himself, which is a definite plus... But then again, you never know... ;)