The day I met my husband, I was really tired of dating.
See, my first husband walked out on me when I was, oh, I think about 10 weeks pregnant or so with the twins. That was in November, 1997. I didn’t date anyone until September, 1999. The primary reason for this wait was because I was still married to my first husband until then. Did you know you can’t get a divorce when you are pregnant in some states? Well, I didn’t either until then! (I mean, unless you are an attorney or know someone who is as unlucky as I felt I probably was at that time then you would probably have no reason to know that). But yeah. I just happened to live in one of those states. Then, even though I gave birth in March of 1998 (really early, yes, I know), my ex-husband continued to drag his feet on the divorce. Do you know why? He’s the laziest person ALIVE. I’m not kidding. He was too lazy to divorce me, when he’d been pushing for it the whole freaking time. Also, I moved out and took the kids and his girlfriend still hadn’t divorced her husband I suppose, and he didn’t have to pay child support and could do things like take Miss-I-have-a-huge-tattoo-on-my-inner-thigh-and-a-2-4-7-haircut-wanna-see to the beach without any fear of me or his BIOLOGICAL CHILDREN needing money for formula. I didn’t even WANT to get divorced and I had to call HIS attorney and ask them to move it along. I didn’t want to be stuck in a state of limbo either. It just wasn’t fair.
So anyway, I started dating. Okay, I fudged just a bit and went out on ONE date with ONE guy before my divorce was final on September 3rd, 1999. He took me out to eat at a Mexican restaurant. I had met this guy on the internet. He posted a picture on his website (this was before anyone had a blog) that was from when he was in high school. He was 34. He had gained well over 100lbs and lost pretty much all of his hair. No truth in advertising!
After that, I started dating another guy. He lived in a different city. We sent long steamy emails back and forth every day, several times a day. When we would meet, it would always be in my city or in the city in which he worked (but did not live). Anyone want to guess why?
Well, if you guessed he was married, you are clearly smarter than I was at that time because he was! Additionally, his wife was pregnant! Fantastic! I immediately kicked him to the curb and have never heard from him again. Okay, that’s a lie, this one time? A girl I was administering credit counseling to told me where she was from and since that was where he was from and since I’m a, you know, glutton for punishment or whatever, I asked if she knew him (it was one of those small North Carolina towns where if you fart with some velocity everyone in the town knows about it in a minute and a half). She told me he and his wife had THREE babies and seemed happy. Or whatever. Then, after that I never thought about him again. Not ever. Until today.
I then went out with a guy who was in the Army. He was a huge tool. Oh, sweet Lord. He was SUCH a HUGE tool. Good thing my self-esteem was so low or I would have never got to meet him. He was madly in love with a girl named Jennifer. Completely obsessed with her. She couldn’t stand him. Clearly, she was intelligent. He was dating lots of women, including me, because Jennifer rejected him. He made it quite clear that he was not looking for a serious relationship, only biding his time until Jennifer fell in love with him. Among his other more charming attributes:
1) He told my dad, who he had just met because my dad happened to be helping me work on my car that day, that he really needed to get him a job at his (my dad’s) company once he got out of the military and he would expect a starting salary of no less than $75,000 annually. This is a guy with a high school education and a couple of years of military experience living in a town where the average annual salary at the time was $28500. And he honest to God expected my dad, a man he had ONLY JUST MET, to come through with a job for him. Plus, he was a tool.
2) On our very first date he said, “Would you like to know how I rate you?” I said, “Um, okay.” He then told me he would place me at “average to slightly above average”. I then asked if he would like to know how I rated him. Surprisingly, he was not interested in my assessment. Plus, you know, he was a tool.
3) He would take me out to eat at really cheap places like Taco Bell or McDonalds when it was his turn to buy and then when it was my turn to buy he’d want to go to really expensive places. Even at reasonably priced places like Applebees or whatever, he’d order the most expensive item on the menu and a margarita the size of my head. He was completely aware that I was a single mother of two children. Plus, did I mention he was an enormous tool?
4) He told me he didn’t want to date me anymore via an instant message. The reason he didn’t want to date me was because he didn’t like the way I kept house. I asked him if he was aware of the fact that I had two children who were just under the age of two. He said he was. I asked him if he thought he could do any better with two children under the age of two, a full-time job, and two part-time jobs. He said he thought he could. He was a huge tool.
5) Immediately after telling me he didn’t want to date me anymore, he asked if we could move in together. I told him no that the places I was looking at were only 2 bedrooms. He said that he and I could share a bedroom and a bed, but there would be no sex involved. Damn skippy. I told him no and to leave me alone. God, he was such a huge tool.
6) One week later he showed up on my doorstep with a diamond ring and asked me to marry him. I said, “Why would I marry you? You don’t love me. And also, I hate you.”
He said he didn’t love me and he knew I didn’t love him, but I had these childbearing hips. He might have said something else, but I slammed the door in his face. Tool.
7) About nine months after that I got a wedding invitation from him. He was marrying a girl named Jennifer. Not THE Jennifer, another girl he had met and gotten pregnant. The invitation included a detailed registry as well as directions for this shindig which was being held several states away. I took the reply card and wrote a long, detailed message on the back about how I wanted him to leave me (the blank) alone and stop emailing me and stop sending me crap in the mail and how I couldn’t STAND him and he was SUCH A TOOL. I said something like, “WE ARE NOT FRIENDS. DO NOT SEND THIS CRAP TO ME.” Lord, have MERCY, he was a tool!
I never heard from him again. And I also grew a pair and stopped dating people like that. Well, okay, maybe I went out with this once. But if they showed any signs of toolishness, they were out the door immediately.
There were several more that I will save for another time, including a guy who had a large framed photograph of George Bush (the first one, not W) on the wall of his trailer and the guy who took me out for drinks the night before Hurricane Floyd. But suffice to say, I’m really happy I met Jason.
He’s totally not a tool.