Sara anticipated with great excitement Tom’s arrival for Valentine’s Day dinner. The meal was delicious. They exchanged Valentine’s Day cards. These two were connecting. But when Sara leaned in for the big kiss, Tom didn’t lean forward. Things plummeted from there. Sara went into the bathroom, sat down on the floor and cried herself to sleep. She woke 20 minutes later to the sound of Tom knocking on the door.
Their evening didn’t end well, but how many Valentine’s Day dates do? Valentine’s Day is a day of mixed emotions, regardless of one’s Facebook relationship status. If you’re single, the day is nothing more than a cruel reminder from Hallmark that your college roommate married before you did.
The event can meet, exceed or obliterate expectations. I wondered how many people experienced the same blunders as poor, aforementioned Sara. I asked politely, and when that didn’t work, I prodded people into sharing Valentine’s Day boo-boos.
Many were in denial. Clearly, they’ve blocked the horror stories from memory. But some talked. If you recognize the victims, keep it to yourselves. The following scenarios are true. We used initials to protect the innocen—or those too sheepish to admit their names.
“I went on a Valentine’s date with a guy who flirted with the hostess at the restaurant. This was supposed to be a special dinner. Later, I caught him asking the hostess for her number.” —R.K., Newark
Flirting with the hostess is one thing. I flirt with many a waiter, especially if they look like Blaine from “Glee.” But to ask for a number? Loser. That’s the last date for this guy.
“In sixth grade, I liked this girl and I made a huge production of it. I saved my money and got her this artsy necklace with her name on it. I had to ride my bike for seven miles to pick it up, showed up at her house with flowers, and she told me she didn’t like me anymore. I’ve hated this holiday ever since.” —Paul Pomeroy, former Newark city councilman.
I feel your pain. This sounds like an episode of “The Wonder Years.” Pomeroy sounds like a good egg, so I would urge any reader to take him out for ice cream.
“Last year on Valentine’s Day, this guy, a Phillies fan, walked into our store to find a nice bottle of wine for his sweetheart. My sales guy, Scott, and I greeted him and watched as he strolled into the wine room like countless others that day. Usually we’ll give folks a few minutes to browse before we ask if they need help, but this classy wine aficionado had already picked out a bottle and then proceeded to the counter. Scott and I were both occupied with other customers at the time, and we weren’t near the checkout counter. The guy waited impatiently for about 20 seconds, decided that was too long, and left the store with the wine. How romantic. He didn’t even stick around for his free Valentine’s Day giftwrap. Scott followed him out only to see him pulling out of the lot in his shiny white Volvo SUV. We reviewed the surveillance video and posted a picture of him on Facebook. The picture went viral.” —Frank Pagliaro, owner of Frank’s Wine, Wilmington
Never accept wine from a thief. Imagine how this blissfully unaware woman felt when she accepted the vino then discovered it had been both stolen, and the theft was caught on tape. I hope her gift to him was a good, swift kick in the pants.
“We decided to go away for Valentine’s Day and got stuck in a snowstorm. Instead of staying in our cabin, I panicked about whether my cat would be OK. I made my boyfriend drive me home in the storm. It was a nightmare. Cars were strewn all over I-95, and the threehour trip ended up taking seven hours. The cat was fine. She couldn’t have given a hoot whether I was home or not.” —Lisa Norris, radio personality, 99.5 WJBR
I hope this feline-fanatical female married this princely and patient guy, then hired a cat-sitter. Meow.
“A few years ago I was dating this girl and she really wanted to go to a Broadway show. So for Valentine’s Day, I made plans for us in New York—a show, dinner at Carmine’s Italian restaurant, a nice hotel— everything. At dinner, she gets a text and tells me she won’t be able to go to the show and has to get back to Delaware. She left dinner and went to the train station. Later I found out she had a husband in Iraq who surprised her by coming home. ” —Spencer Graves, radio personality, 93.7 WSTW
Graves is a fine-looking chap who doesn’t have trouble getting dates. However, I suggest he develop a dating surveillance system. Stay fabulous, Mr. Graves. But make sure your future dates provide proper documentation.