Once swept away in a twister, Dorothy was no longer in Kansas anymore* and once crossing into New Hampshire, it was clear that I was no longer in the Midwest anymore. How? Manners. (Hold that thought.)
Dana, my NH date, was the first admitted single dad I dated on this adventure. For understandable reasons, single dads have qualms about dating in general, let alone agreeing to be filmed. I was appreciative when he said yes to the date. So off to a small park we went for a short walk in threatening-to-rain weather where I learned Dana has a four-year-old daughter and one closer to me in age, coming in at twenty-two. As Dana is forty-four, I realized I’m closer to her age than his, and my mind spun into an alternate universe where Dana was the love of my life and I wound up having a twenty-two-year-old stepdaughter. I shook my head to erase the thought (apparently thoughts disappear when you treat your brain like an Etch a Sketch) and tried chatting with Dana about other things instead.
Tried being the operative word. Remember that manners topic from paragraph one? Yeah…Dana reminded me of one of my favorite dorky jokes:
Me: Who’s there?
Him: Interrupting cow.
Me: Interrupting cow w-
Every time I tried to speak for more than two seconds, Dana cut me off to keep talking. At first I let him, attributing it to my being softly spoken so perhaps he wasn’t able to hear me. Then I tried speaking up with no improvement. The guy definitely just wanted me to listen to him.
He prattled on about softball leagues, his daughters, his exes, the fact that he hates bars but goes to them, the fact that he hasn’t had much luck dating online except he’s actually been on two other dates this week and has a second date planned next week. Smiling politely I wondered why I couldn’t get Meg’s attention to come save me. At one point I even said we needed to leave and he said, “Oh, I have twenty more minutes before I have to pick up my princess,” and remained seated.
Add on top of that Miss Manners face-in-palm, the fact that Dana pushed into every door we went through first without even attempting to hold them for Megan or me and voila — I realized that over the past week or so I’d become accustomed to a slightly different attitude when out. Yes, I was in a different region that surely had different societal norms — not sure if that was to blame, or Dana himself was the issue.
Regardless, we parted ways amicably and I was more than happy to be moving on and having normal conversation styling with Megan. Except Megs wasn’t speaking to me.
*I kind of wonder if Dorothy managed to return to the same Kansas when she came back on the hot air balloon (spoiler alert). Just seems that the likelihood of her not hopping into a different reality is slim to none. This concludes my Wizard of Oz criticism of the day.
**For a good time, check out this. For an extra good time, add on to the end of the joke:
Me: Who’s there?
Him: Interrupting pig.
Me: Interrupting pig w–
Him: License and registration, ma’am.