About halfway through dinner, Rhett's demeanor suddenly changed. As if on cue, his puppy-like exuberance vanished. His voice grew louder, his speech less precise. Most striking, however, was the sudden darkness of his mood. Clearly, he was troubled by the realization that our first date was likely to be our last. He turned nasty.
Soon, Rhett began hurling insults at me. He criticized my haircut and my clothes. He said that I lacked passion. When I tried to comfort him by putting my arm on his shoulder, he reacted violently, shouting "Oh, now you touch me! I've been trying to get you to touch me all night!"
Oy vey! as my grandmother used to say.
Of course, I wasn't the least bit offended by Rhett's tirade. I knew that Jekyll was now Hyde and, as I watched his meltdown, I felt sad that this decent guy who had simply had too much to drink would eventually suffer the humiliation of having to watch this scene along with a few million other people around the world.
Not satisfied with hurling insults, Rhett ended the date with a flourish by hurling the contents of his water glass in my face. I had thought to respond, "Honey, perhaps we should try seeing other people," but instead hastily took my leave. Rhett was too trashed to appreciate the humor and, besides, I knew that the next thing he was likely to hurl in my direction was a slightly used gourmet dinner.