Friday, March 19, 2010

In which Primo and I have our first date, only he doesn't think it's a date so he doesn't pay

Y'all, I am running out of Sly and Doris stories and I am not particularly eager to accompany Primo on his forced march to their place in April just to get new material, although I will if he really wants me to go. He did promise I would not have to visit them in all of 2010, but I love him and he is kind of miserable when he goes there, so despite the promise, if he wants me to go, I will. Anyhow, I am resorting to plain Primo and moi stories because I like writing here. I hope they don't bore anyone.

November 2005 It's been a few weeks since Primo and I met. I always say we met on November 11, which is the day I blew him off at the party where the hosts had photos of chairman Mao hanging on the wall and the one host said that he didn't understand why his Chinese co-worker got upset about the Mao poster hanging in his office and I wanted to say, "I guess it couldn't be that Mao caused the death of like 30 million people and maybe some of them were her family," but I was being polite so I kept my mouth shut. Sometimes maybe I shouldn't be so polite.

Primo likes to say we met on November 12 because November 11 is the anniversary of his wedding to Isabel. And because we didn't really talk on November 11, I guess I can go with November 12.

We have been emailing like crazy people since we met. Primo asks Sam for my email that reunion weekend and writes to me. I answer his email promptly because I am no good at The Rules and then Primo does not write back for THREE DAYS.


I think he has blown me off and I'm mad at myself for responding to his email at all and I spend THREE DAYS being really, really stressed. Stupid, stupid, stupid. I should not have answered his email or at least not answered it right away. Have I learned nothing in my 20+ years of dating?

Apparently not.

Then he answers. Oh, he is busy working.

Uh huh. Like he couldn't write a simple email?

Actually, he can't. Write a simple email, that is.

He writes again and keeps writing and he writes so well. His emails are long and chatty and well written, as they should be, what with Sly being an English prof and all. I discover the Dark Side of Primo's punctiliousness later, when I will ask him to email someone to ask a quick question and he doesn't want to. "Just send an email!" I will say. "How hard can it be?"

Oh, if you have to have a salutation and a little small talk on every note, which means it takes you 15 minutes to compose an email to ask someone, "What time does the party start?" then it can be pretty hard.

But while we are email dating, it is nice to get long emails.

Then he tells me that he is going to be in my city on a layover on the way to his mom and dad's house. Would I like to have lunch?

Well OK. I've just been laid off from my job, although I am still working until the end of the year. I don't really care if I take an afternoon off. What are they going to do? Fire me?

I pick him up at the airport. I take him to one of my favorite restaurants. We talk. Oh, he's cute and sexy.

The check arrives.

He does not pay!

I am shocked. After six years of living in The South, I know the rules. Even on a blind date (of which I had several, thanks to my fairy godmothers), the man pays. I gave up trying to pay my own share because the men were so insulted.

Does he not know the rules? Why doesn't he pay?

He tells me later that he didn't think it was a date because you know I was still involved with Gomez, the Moroccan millionaire.

Oh please. Like I would have picked Primo up at the airport and spent all afternoon with him just to be nice?

This was about S-E-X, baby.

I take him back to the airport and he hugs me.


I do not do hugs with people I barely know, especially people who do not buy me lunch when it's a date. No pay, no play.


  1. Men, huh? I totally would have expected him to pay, date or not. He asked you and you went out of your way. Obviously he 's redeemed himself...

  2. I am a friend of yours who also enjoys writing (hint), a Southerner (hint), and a male (hint), and right now I want to gently thump the very nice Primo on the head for not paying. Even if you all were just friends he could have treated you to lunch. Good that it all worked out in the end.

  3. I can see how Primo thought you should pay since he was the out of town guest, but I think he should've offered to go dutch at the very least. On dates, I always offer to pay but if the guy's a gentleman I shouldn't end up paying the bill.

    Sly or no Sly, your blog is still entertaining. Keep the stories coming!

  4. It has all worked out just fine. Primo paid for everything after that, but I do retain the rights to tease him about it even now.

    Hi Anon. I know who you are. :)

  5. I have been married so long and back when I was dating we were both broke college students, so I don't know any of the pay/ no pay rules. I would be so lost if I was dating now.

  6. AKJ, it wasn't so much that I didn't want to hug him because he hadn't bought lunch, it was that I didn't want to hug him because I barely knew him. Remember, I am the person who looks for the empty row at church so I won't be subject to the Tyranny of the Hand Holding during the Our Father.