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Dating hell: The world's worst first dates


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A man in Arkansas recently made a bizarre attempt to impress his date by asking a friend to attack them with a knife.

The couple were taking a romantic stroll in an Arkansas park when they were attacked by a man carrying a large knife. Whilst Tyler Siegel’s date did the sensible thing and ran the heck away, Siegel bravely remained to fight the assailant, suffering some (self-inflicted) cuts to his wrists and arms in the process.

Surprise, surprise, Siegel’s date wasn’t exactly overflowing with love and affection after the strange stunt. She told local media that the attack seemed ‘very real’ – but Siegel didn’t come out as the heroic hunk he’d hoped. Siegel’s date confirmed that she was no longer in contact with her wannabe rescuer.

The news got us thinking. It got us thinking about how great the internet is. Because whilst you might think you’ve been on your share of terrible dates (at TNS we certainly have) you’re really always just a quick Google away from realising just how many massive weirdos live in our world, and how many weird, terrifying and downright awful dates they have subjected other people to.

In fact – just in case you’re too depressed after all your amateur awful dates – we did that Google search for you. So next time you crawl home weeping after dinner with nose-picking, racist-joke-cracking, dirty, smelly Mr. or Mrs. Wrong... just be glad you’re not on any of these dates:

1)      The one where they get a machine to make a fake excuse to leave you

The dating site recently stuck a knife in the slowly dying corpse of good manners everywhere. What these clever folks have done is create an iPhone app called Bad Date Rescue. With the free app, you can arrange for your date from hell to be conveniently interrupted by a machine pretending to be your ‘mom’ with the wonderful news that your sister just gave birth, a neighbour letting you know that your apartment is flooded, or a whole host of other bad excuses. It doesn’t stop there – if you get flustered under pressure, the machine gives you a repeat-after-me script (with advice on appropriate facial expressions) to make your dirty lies convincing enough. In the age of the iPhone, it seems honesty is dead.

2)      The 61 year old wife going for dinner at her eight-year-old husband’s parent’s house  

Actually, maybe date escape technology isn’t such a bad idea. Especially if you find yourselves, age 61, on a dinner date... with an eight-year-old. Your eight-year-old husband, to be specific. And his family. That’s where 61-year-old Helen Shabangu sometimes finds herself  – the South African doesn’t live with her diminutive husband, but she is sometimes invited to have dinner with the boy and his family. The young husband recently told Yahoo! that, two weeks after marriage, he now ‘feels like a husband’. Aw.

3)      The awful date which follows up with a 1,600 word email

Some bad dates seem never-ending. Even worse is when a really awful date doesn’t get the picture and keeps trying to contact you. This happened on a grand scale to one truly awful date who, realising his dinner partner was less than interested, sent her a massive, cringey 1,600 word email, analysing the date and ultimately failing to persuade her what a good catch he is. She (probably not the best date ever, either) posted the email on Reddit for your amusement. Below are some of our favourite bits:

"I'm not trying to be harsh, patronizing, or insulting in this email. I'm honest and direct by nature, and I'm going to be that way in this email. By the way, I did a Google search, so that's how I came across your email.

"I suggest that you make a sincere apology to me for giving me mixed signals. I feel led on by you.

"Things that happened during our date include, but are not limited to, the following:- You played with your hair a lot. A woman playing with her hair is a common sign of flirtation. You can even do a Google search on it. When a woman plays with her hair, she is preening. I've never had a date where a woman played with her hair as much as you did. In addition, it didn't look like you were playing with your hair out of nervousness.

"We had lots of eye contact during our date. On a per-minute basis, I've never had as much eye contact during a date as I did with you.

"You said, 'It was nice to meet you' at the end of our date. A woman could say this statement as a way to show that she isn't interested in seeing a man again or she could mean what she said-that it was nice to meet you. The statement, by itself, is inconclusive. 

"According to the internet, you're 33 or 32, so, at least from my point of view, we're a good match in terms of age... I don't understand why you apparently don't want to go out with me again... I'm both a right-brain and left-brain man, given that I'm both an investment manager and a philosopher/writer. That's a unique characteristic; most people aren't like that."  

Right.  And it carries on for another 1400 words. Read the full email here.

4) Or the date that sends you a gazillion text messages when you don't reply. Literally.

Even worse than email-guy might be this crazy lady... "I'm outside your house, Kevin."


5)      The guy who thinks a good date is going to hunt middle eastern zombies 

If dinner with guy no. 3 sounds like the most boring thing that could happen to anyone ever, perhaps you would like to meet this guy, who, convinced that the dead of America’s wars past were crawling his local woods as zombies, took his lucky date zombie hunting.  There are probably worse ways to spend a Friday night.

Think these dates got off lightly? Let us know about your worst dates, below.

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