*This is a work of nonfiction based on actual events as told to me by a friend who experienced them firsthand; used with permission.
My friend Angela had been talking to this guy Mark online for quite a while before she decided to meet him in person. They spent weeks talking every day on the dating app where they met and were enjoying getting to know each other. She even said at one point shortly before they met that he might be ‘the one.’
That’s saying a lot for my friend Angela, who has definitely been on more dates than anyone I’ve ever met. She’s also been engaged more times than anyone I’ve known personally, but that’s another story or four.
Mark seemed perfect on the surface. He had a great job and worked remotely at home for a tech company doing things Angela didn’t care to understand. He had a nice house, drove a nice car, he was definitely a few levels up from Angela at the time and she was keenly aware of that and it made him even more attractive to her.
Mark was very attractive, too. He was tall and had dark hair that swooped perfectly over his forehead, a cute nose, a perfect, white toothed smile. He looked the part of a perfect husband, in Angela’s mind, so finally she was ready to meet him.
They decided that their first date would be at a local casino. They would go to dinner first and then dancing at the nightclub, so Angela wore a cute little black dress and expected he’d be well dressed in a nice shirt and tie or even a suit. She was so excited to meet him.
But, things don’t usually go right for Angela, they just don’t.
When she started relaying to me the story of her first date with Mark, it sounded like it went great at first. They enjoyed their conversation at dinner, they definitely had an attraction to each other, and Angela felt even more by the end of dinner that she wanted date Mark seriously and maybe even marry him.
Then they went to the nightclub.
That’s where Angela saw that a number of Mark’s teeth were glowing green in the dark, clearly false teeth that he didn’t tell her about.
All Angela could think of was what Mark would look like when he took those teeth out at night and put them in a little container before bed. Every night. For the rest of her life.
Angela excused herself to use the bathroom and fled from the nightclub, through the casino, and out to her car in the parking garage. She had a moment of doubt that she was making a rash, wrong choice but that moment was fleeting and she turned on her car and sped away.
She never talked to Mark again. He never texted her to see what had happened to her, he never messaged her again on the dating app they both continued to use.
Maybe he knew why she ran out on him, maybe he didn’t, but running out was rude and inexcusable and if I were him I wouldn’t have gotten back in touch with Angela, either.
But I probably also wouldn’t have run from Mark.
What would you have done?