This is another story from the book I’m working on and planning to publish this winter! Luther tells the story of a blind date that he went on in college. Joan & I are the audience for the evening.
A Blind Date
Luther sneaks up behind Joan while she stands over the kitchen stove. She is preparing fat hamburgers in a heavy cast iron skillet. He hugs her and says in a silly voice, “Mama, I looooveeeee you. Have I told you that today?”
Then, he plants six short, loud kisses on her neck. She giggles and shoos him away playfully.
“Have I told you about the time I stood your grandmother up?” Luther says while giving Joan a goofy, apologetic grin.
Luther begins eagerly, “You see, I was supposed to go on a blind date one afternoon. And, that was all I knew. I was excited to spend the afternoon sporting a pretty model at the University of Missouri football game. Later that evening, I was supposed to take Joan here out for supper.”
Luther’s military man look was earning him plenty of dates, but occasionally he still let a friend set him up on a blind date. Many months without women on the frozen tundra of Fire Island pushed Luther to a new level. Two dates in one day was only making up for lost opportunities.
“It was a beautiful, early September day.” He says, “It was about 90 degrees outside and the sun was shining. When it was time, I went to the house to pick up my date. I wasn’t sure how she would look, but I had high hopes. After all, she was a model! When she stepped out on the porch I knew right away she wasn’t the good-looking gal my friend had promised me. This gal was plain. In fact, it was worse than that, she was pretty hard looking. I’m not the cream of the crop either, but I don’t go around getting people’s hopes up telling them I’m a model. Boy, was I let down! On top of that, here we were in the middle of hot day and she was wearing an ankle length mink coat and white gloves. I was damn near embarrassed by her get up. And, if you know me at all, you know I don’t get embarrassed. This outfit was bad. It turned out this gal was a hand model.”
Luther pretends to pose, modeling his hands and arms for an invisible photographer. The burgers sizzle and pop while Joan slowly cooks them. The kitchen is designed so that the stovetop is located in the center island, next to the kitchen table. This way, Joan can stand – spatula in hand – preparing food and talking with Luther and I. Unlike most homes, standing over the stove doesn’t force her to look at a wall while everyone else talks around a table.
Above her stovetop, there is a pot and pan rack hanging from the ceiling. Twenty pots and pans, a variety of stainless steel, cast iron, and non-stick hang prepared for convenient access.
Luther says, “It was too late to avoid our date, sometimes when you’re in a situation like this, I learned that drinking a little will make things look better. I always took purple passion in gallon jugs to the Missouri football games. It is a mixture of grape juice and vodka with a little splash of lemon. I started drinking; hoping that a bit of Purple Passion would help her looks and make me feel better about my situation.”
I roll my eyes, hearing my grandfather talking about his tipsy football games is a bit ridiculous at times.
“Despite my enthusiastic attempt to make this gal more appealing, by half-time she still didn’t look pretty. So, I doubled up,” He says with a chuckle. “Damn it, this was the first gal I had ever been with that I couldn’t drink away the ugly! It wouldn’t have been so bad if she turned out to be nice. Instead, she was painfully vain. She told me, ‘I’ve got to protect my hands from the sun.’ She wouldn’t take those darn white gloves off the whole game. By the end of the game, my friends had to drive us both home and they put me right to bed. I had too much Purple Passion and I was feeling pretty bad. Now that night, I was supposed to have a date with Joan. The game was in the afternoon and I was going to take her to supper. By the time I woke up, it was too late for my second date. It was long, long passed when I was supposed to pick up Joan. I figured it was a lost cause, I didn’t even try to call her to apologize!”
Luther looks guiltily over at his wife, “That’s right isn’t it honey? You were pretty upset with me, weren’t you?”
Joan nods her head yes. Luther says, “Don’t worry sweetie, I ended up with you. Now I tell people about the night I accidentally stood my wife up for a model. Nobody has to know she was the sorriest looking model I ever saw!”