Lord of the Flies

Posted on July 23, 2012


That’s not distracting at all.

Tyler’s OkCupid profile was funny, and ended with “*Also available in sober.” I should have taken that as a sign. Instead, I thought it was clever and sent him a message.

He responded, one thing led to another, and he asked me out. We decided to meet the next Saturday afternoon for coffee.

I’d been out late the night before, and getting my act together took more time and effort than usual. But the excitement for meeting the funny stranger I’d met online carried me through. Plus, I could really use a big cup of coffee.

About a half hour before our meeting time, Tyler texted me: “Let’s do cocktails instead. There’s a cool spot on Irving Place next to Friend of a Farmer.”

So much for my caffeine fix… but I always try to be agreeable on a first date, so I went along with it.

Not surprisingly, I was running late. I texted him on my way to say I’d be about ten minutes behind. “No problem,” he said. “Do you want red or white wine?”

When I showed up, Tyler was sitting in a corner table—in what was clearly a coffee shop. He held out my white wine. “Isn’t it cool that they serve wine here?” he asked. I eyed the steaming cappuccino on the table next to us.

Then, a fly landed on the rim of my glass. When I looked up, I saw that they were everywhere. One was even on Tyler’s head. Yup, this was not my favorite place.

I could tell I was being boring, plus the wine was making me even sleepier, but he wasn’t doing much to help the situation. I used awkward pauses to track the flies that were circling his head. When we’d exhausted the topics of where we went to school and what we did for a living, plus detailed every member of each other’s families, I was ready to head home.

Instead, he said, “I’ll get us another round,” and stood up to go to the counter. A fly landed on my hand, and I watched it rub its little hands together.

When Tyler returned, he was sporting more white wine for me, and what looked like the most delicious latté in the world for him. “Had to lay off the wine,” he said. “I had a late night last night.”

I wanted that coffee so badly! “Me too,” I mumbled, taking a big swig. We were officially out of things to talk about. There were now two flies on his head.

When my glass was half empty, one of those flies made a beeline for it. His bath did not end well, and I was left with a dead fly in my unwanted wine. Awesome—even the flies were so bored they were taking their own lives. That’s when I decided to leave before there were any more casualties.

I stopped at Starbucks on the way home. No Tyler, no flies, lots of caffeine… much better.

 —Raz, 25, NYC

Posted in: My Stories