About a year ago, my friend Amy fired off a mass email to everyone she knew asking us about the worst dates we’d ever had.
I sheepishly wrote back that I didn't have anything juicy to confess. It’s hard to have bad date stories when you hardly ever date. Besides, I’ve never had a truly bad date -- the worst were mostly just boring and tedious.
But hundreds of other women told Amy stories so funny, so awful and so outlandish that she wrote a book about it.
I had a chance to catch up with her this week when she flew into Vancouver on a whirlwind publicity tour. Ironically, Amy and I once dated the same guy. Not at the same time, of course. That would be pornography, not literature.
So here’s one dating story that didn’t make it into the book:
Amy and I worked in New Brunswick together in the 1990s at the country’s most incestuous newsroom. I worked in the Saint John bureau. Amy worked in the Moncton bureau along with one of the most eligible bachelors in the province.
They dated for several months until she was transferred to Fredericton. A few weeks after they broke up, I started dating him. It sounds bad, I know, but we were all in our early 20s and there weren’t many young, single guys to go around.
Besides, I didn’t actually know Amy -- we were working in different cities -- so it wasn’t like I was stealing her man or stabbing her in the back. Of course, our coworkers twisted the truth to make it sound like I was some kind of home wrecker. Damned journalists.
A few months later, still dating Amy’s ex-boyfriend, I was transferred to the tiny Fredericton office. I was terrified of working in such close quarters with Amy. I was worried she’d hate me and be mean to me.
Quite the opposite. We got along fabulously and ended up becoming friends. I’ve long since broken up with the guy. I haven’t talked to him in years, but I still keep in touch with Amy.
She even set me up on a blind date with a good friend of hers who moved to Vancouver. It didn’t really go anywhere. He was way too into hockey and beer. But it wasn’t a bad date. See? My life is way too boring to end up as a chapter in her book.
Anyway, I’ve put Amy Cameron’s book on my reading list. I expect it will reinforce my belief that it’s better to be alone than on a bad date.