Key Takeaways: If you drive a 2002 Kia Spectra, you need to take your car into the shop immediately… you know who you are.
Name: John, which is not his real name but he did standup and I love John Mullaney… so, John.
Length of date: 4.5 hours
How the date was obtained: Filling out a “contact” form on dateaweekla.com
Where: Summer Canteen for dinner and an open mic at Haha Comedy Club in North Hollywood
She said: (that's right, you're also going to hear from my date.) To start, John and I have known each other for the past 4 years. He and I worked on various projects together at the college we attended. I’ve always admired his creativity and wit. So, when he reached out on the “contact” page of this blog to inquire about going on a date, I assumed it was a joke. But nonetheless, he’s a friend of mine and I like spending time with him so I agreed.
I consider myself more of a type-A personality with some B tendencies, while John is more of a type B personality with some F tendencies. He’s a guy that thrives on jumping off roofs into pools and rapping to ripped beats, and again, I like knitting on Fridays. But, there’s something charming about him. He has loads of charisma and his self-deprecating humor makes everyone laugh and feel bad for him at the same time.
So, when John asked me on a date, it was easy for me to say “yes.” It was even easier to say “yes,” when he suggested that we go to an open mic at a comedy club, where he would perform.
When we met at the club for the supposed 6:00PM open mic, we were informed by a disgruntled box office attendee: “on Saturdays, the open mic is at 8:30.” So, we switched gears and went to dinner.
The night took an adventurous turn when we had to walk under an overpass and through a particularly well-established homeless camp. John reassured me not to worry because these were “his people.” Side note - John was technically homeless for a semester of college, which is a completely different story.
There, I really went out of my comfort zone and got the Pad Thai, which is one of the best I’ve had in LA. After dinner we still had an hour to kill so we walked back to the club. Then, we had 50 minutes to kill. I wanted to get a “sweet treat,” so we looked around for a dessert spot, but all that we saw was a CVS. So, we headed for the candy aisle. I perused the large assortment of circus peanuts and dinner mints, but I couldn’t find anything that floated my boat. Still, we had 40 minutes to kill. We wandered around, tried some lotion samples, stood on that machine that tells you which insoles to buy and then I finally settled on Mini Reece’s Peanut Butter Cups.
With minutes to spare, we went to the club and were directed to the open mic area, which was outside. I zipped up my jacket and got ready to brave the frigid, LA winter conditions. Luckily there was a heater, so I planted myself there and did not move for the next 2 hours.
Most of the comedians were wretched. I occasionally let out a few pity chuckles. Yet, when John’s name was finally called (1.5 hours in) I was excited to see him in his element. His set was tight, smart, and entertaining. Although, I was slightly embarrassed when John announced he was on a first date and then asked everyone to laugh more so he could impress me.
At the end of the date, I allowed John to drive me home. And before you start getting worried, John attended my birthday party, so I am confident that if he was a stalker, he would have already been creeping outside my window by now. But I really shouldn’t have felt so comfortable because his car is… no bueno. Although he insists that his 2002 Kia Spectra is fine, I can assure you that it’s not. John, if you are reading this, you must get your engine checked. This is not a joke. Something is very wrong with your vehicle. I am not a mechanic or a person who can speak with any authority about cars, but I am convinced that your air-vents are attached to your tank and you are inhaling gasoline.
After the frightening, 20 minute drive to my house, I hugged John. And when he joked about a second date, I said “I think we are better off as friends.” He joked and said something sarcastic like “Whaaaaaaaaaatttttt???” But, we are friends and good ones at that. And I am genuinely grateful for his presence in my life.
The Future for us… friends. I can say with a certain amount of certainty, that John will be a friend of mine for a long time.
Ever wonder what the guys think about me?
Well, I asked John to write a review of our date. So, here it is:
He said: She got to the open mic before me. Thirteen minutes to be exact. Classic Isabel. However, I (a normal person) arrived at the agreed upon time of 6:00pm. I drove past her on my way to finding parking. She was standing alone outside of the comedy-club in North Hollywood. Part of me was worried that she would have to fend off one of LA’s emboldened crack-heads or something like that. But luckily when I arrived, she was chilling.
Isabel and I have a history. We actually used to live together a few years back. Well - she lived above me. But still, there’s a certain bond that occurs when you sleep ten feet below someone.
I don’t know what you know about Isabel. But the girl is funny. She’s like Tina Fey meets Anna Kendrick. I was struck by her marvelous wit when I first met her so, being a curious man, I sought her courtship.
The first time we hung out was in Santa Monica. I had taken the bus there earlier to go to this comedy open-mic where I bombed. I told her about it, but I intentionally told her too late so she wouldn’t be able to see me. But she was nice enough to pick me up afterwards. We walked down the pier, joked around and had a solid heart-to-heart. Then we drove back, got some Jack-in-the Box, and went back to our dorm.
I would ask Isabel to hang out a lot after that, but she said she was “busy.” Yeah right. But it’s whatever, I’m not resentful at all. Something you gotta know about Isabel, especially if you seek her hand in matrimony, is that she has little to no tolerance for bullshit. Which, at the time, eliminated me from consideration due to the fact that I was suffering from late-on-set teen angst. But things have changed. I’ve been behaving a lot better lately. I graduated college, I have two jobs and I’m one of the most fledgling comedians in the LA open mic scene. This was my chance to redeem myself after completely blowing it last time. A chance at her heart…
So, I invited her to watch me do an open mic. I figured, what better way to demonstrate my manhood than getting on stage and telling the story of how I got robbed on New Year’s. I was ready to wow her with my chops right at the start of the date, then enjoy a dinner celebrating my imminent rise to a Netflix special. But unfortunately, I got the time wrong and the mic actually started at 8:30, not 6:00. Whoops.
We adjusted plans accordingly, finding this exquisite Thai place. We caught up talking about work, aspirations and what the Clintons had to do with Jeffrey Epstein’s death… She wasn’t so into that last one, but the din-din went well. I thought, surely, it’s 8:30 by now. Wrong. It was only 7:30, so we had an hour to kill. So naturally we went to CVS, walked around for forty minutes and tried various lotions. As we waited in line with the “sweet treat” that Isabel was so insistent on acquiring, she asked me if I was nervous for the open mic. I responded, “Waaaaaaa? Na.” maintaining my cool.
When we got to the show it was a while before I went up. We watched some very bad comedians. Some good ones. But mostly very bad ones. Isabel couldn’t conceal her repugnance to the cringe-worthy comedians and I was beginning to worry she might feel the same about my set. Gulp.
Eventually, my name got called out of the bucket for the on deck circle. But before getting up I peed, wash my hands then pepped myself, in that order. Then I got onstage and started with, “Hey. I’m on a first date right now, so if you guys could really do it up with the applause that’d be great. Because if this doesn’t go well, I don’t think there’s gonna be a second date.” The crowd burst into laughter, I got a standing ovation, and totally impressed Isabel… Something like that.
I drove her home in my totally safe and functional 2002 Kia Spectra. When we got to her place, I was shocked to not be invited inside, but I suppose she just wanted to take it slow. Then I asked her, “So. Date two? Will you email me?”
And then she said something like, “I think we’re just friends.” What!? Are you kidding me? I waited three years for a second shot for “Just friends”?! Unbelievable. But, I guess it is what it is… Maybe we’re not cut out for each other. Sure, she’s hilarious, smart and pretty. But if she doesn’t believe that the Clinton family is part of an evil international cabal that kills anyone who knows too much, then I guess it’s not meant to be.
In all seriousness, Isabel is a one-of-a-kind young woman. I’ve been lucky enough to work with her, creating some stuff that I think we’re both proud of. She’s incredibly talented, driven and thoughtful. She’s challenged me to grow-up and inspired me to go-for-it just by being her bad-ass self. Truly, any guy would be so lucky to snag a date alone with this gem.
She said (again):
Next Week: A midday coffee date... how risqué!