Let me set the scene. I was early 20’s. I’d just finished a longish relationship with an older guy. I wasn’t fresh off the boat green but I was still young and quite sheltered and naive in my ways.
This is not my funniest relationship story but was undoubtedly the strangest and definitely falls into the third rate romance category.
I was working in a small shop in North London. It was a typical 9-5 job and we had an hour off for lunch. My female boss and I got on fairly well and enjoyed a few laughs. She was totally different to me, was into riding motorbikes and leathers and all that. Quite often her friends would call into the shop to visit with her and pass their time away.
One such time my eyes were drawn to her male friend. He was quite cute and seemed agreeable enough. We got talking and he invited me out for lunch at the local pub. For some reason this date was delayed for a week or so.
During this delay my boss/friend took me to one side and expressed slight concern over our coming date. It’s a long time ago so I don’t remember her exact words but I believe they ran along the lines of “My friend has been ill, he has some problems, be careful”.
Well I thought the date is arranged now so in for a penny in for a pound so to speak…
The day came. My date arrived. We sat down and ordered our food and drinks. We’d both made an effort to dress up. He looked and smelt good. So far so good.
While we waited for our lunch we made small talk. I think we started off on music and then our mutual friend and so on. Given how excruciatingly awful these things can be it was going OK.
And then he dropped his bombshell and opened his mouth and told me he was the Antichrist. I really don’t recall if my boss had used the exact word schizophrenia in regards to her friend but I was obviously taken aback and nonplussed.
I ran the gamut of the possibility of him joking but actually something quite creepy in his voice and eyes told me he was deadly serious.
Well what would you say in response to that?
I probably in retrospect could have done better than telling him I was a committed Christian who believed in Jesus Christ and I didn’t believe he was the Antichrist.
With that he ran out of the pub leaving me on my own and with 2 lunches that had just arrived. I gave it 5 minutes to see if he would return but he didn’t not even to grab his forgotten jacket. Feeling relieved I’d had a lucky escape I ate my lunch, paid for both meals to the bar man’s amusement and made my way back to work at my usual time.
I don’t remember if I ever saw him again after that. I must have discussed it with my friend.
It wasn’t the fact he was schizophrenic that put me off him. He could not help that just as I could not help falling into depression years later. It was just so strange the way he ran out of that bar as if his heels were on fire! I have had several dates and a long marriage since then so I don’t think it was me. He obviously had issues and my remarks unfortunately touched a further nerve.
Must be the most surreal date I’ve ever had though.