Freeway of Love
Well that’s it. I give up. I really don’t know what the women are thinking. I’ve talked with them. I’ve studied them. I’ve asked them to study me. And I have to admit I am still at square one. Not that I really object to square one. It is the only numbered square in the game. At least you know your position.
Nobody ever screws up and goes, “Well, back to oval seven.”
I believe we’re all secretly happy we can’t figure our relationships out. It keeps our minds working. I think we have to be grateful for the one thing in our lives that keeps us from being totally focused on eating.The Date
Dating is pressure and tension. What is a date really, but a job interview that lasts all night? The only difference between a date and a job interview is that in not many job interviews is there a chance you’ll wind up naked at the end of it.
“Well Bill, the boss thinks you’re the man for the position. Why don’t you strip down and meet some of the people you’ll be working with?”
Maybe we need some kind of pre-date ritual. Maybe first meet up in one of those rooms where you visit prisoners. You have that glass between you. You talk on the phones. See how that goes before you attempt an actual date. This way the only sexual tension would be deciding if you should put your hand on the glass or not. And if you’re not comfortable at any point, you just signal to the guard and they take the other person away.
It’s hard to have fun when you’re feeling evaluated. We should say, “You seem nice. Why don’t we get together sometime for some serious scrutiny?”
Because that’s the thing that happens. Whenever you think about this person in terms of maybe spending your future with them, you have to magnify every little thing about them.
The guy will be like, “I don’t think her eyebrows are even. I can’t believe it. Her eyebrows are
uneven. Could I look at uneven eyebrows for the rest of my life?” And of course, the woman’s thinking, “What is he looking at? Do I want someone looking at me like this for the rest of my life?”
Women, of course, have powers far beyond those of mortal men.
A woman left a message on my phone machine the other day, with kind of a breathy voice. And no matter what a woman says, if it’s in that breathy voice, it sounds so appealing. A stewardess could lean over, whisper in my ear, “Would you put on your seatbelt? We’re about to crash into a mountain.” And I wanna go, “Really? So what are you doing later by the ruptured fuselage? What do you say we meet for some peanuts over by the black box? I’ll bring the cushions.”
Women need to like the job of the guy they’re dating. If they don’t like the job, they don’t like the guy. Men know this–which is why we make up the phony, bogus names for the jobs that we have. “Well right now, I’m the regional management supervisor. I’m in development, production, consulting . . .”
Men, on the other hand, if they are physically attracted to a woman, are not that concerned with her job.
We’ll just go, “Really? Slaughterhouse? Is that where you work? That sounds interesting. So, what do you have, a big cleaver and you just lop their heads off? That sounds great. Listen, why don’t you shower up and we’ll get some burgers and catch a movie.”
And why is it always dinner? You pick your teeth, I’ll wipe my chin, we’ll find out what we’re really about here. He’s thinking, “Boy, nice hair.” She’s thinking, “I can’t believe the size of the piece of bread he just put in his mouth.” That always happens to me. Why is it when I reach for the bread I suddenly forget I’m on a date? I have this split second mental lapse and think I’m alone in a hotel room in Milwaukee. And there’s nothing you can do once that bread is in there. You just get it down and hope she likes your car.
What would the world be like if people said whatever they were thinking, all the time, whenever it came to them? How long would a blind date last? About thirteen seconds, I think. “Oh sorry, your rear end is too big.” “That’s ok, your breath stinks anyway. See you later.” “No problem.” “Goodbye.” “Okay.” “Thank you very much.”
Dating in modern times is actually a big improvement on past civilizations. You know that in ancient tribal cultures, they would sacrifice a virgin. This is true. They thought that would accomplish something. They would find some girl that had never been out with anybody and they would throw her into a volcano. Now there’s
a first date she’ll never forget. She winds up in Heaven, talking with Chuck Woolery. “So, tell me, Lisa, how did the date end?”
“Not well, Chuck. Not well.”
“Well, if you’d like to be thrown into a volcano again, we’ll pay for it. . . .”
The worst dates are often the result of the fix-up. Why do we fix people up? Because you
think they’ll have a good time? Who the hell are you? It’s a little power trip isn’t it? You’re playing God.
Of course God was the first person to fix people up. Fixed up Adam and Eve, you know. I’m sure he said to Adam, “No, she’s nice, she’s very free about her body, doesn’t really wear much. She was going out with a snake–I think that’s over though.”
To me, the fix-up just doesn’t work. You cannot fix people up. It doesn’t work because nobody wants to think that they need to be fixed up. You cannot get that out of your mind; it affects your attitude when you meet the person that you’re fixed up with. You go, “Well, I guess everybody thinks I should be with you.”
I was fixed up one time. Couldn’t deal with it. The whole time we were out, I could feel the puppet strings of the fixer-uppers on me. I couldn’t even operate my body. I go to put my arm around her . . .
“Sorry, I can’t control my arms. This whole evening wasn’t my idea. I’m just a puppet.”
Has it ever occurred to you that the ventriloquist dummy always seems to have a very active, sexual, social life? He’s always talking about dates and women that he knows and bringing them back to the suitcase at night. There’s always a sawdust joke in there somewhere, kinky sexual references to being made out of wood or spinning his head around. We’re somehow expected to accept this. I guess because the face is so animated, they think we’re not noticing, for example, that the feet are just kind of swinging there. Dummy feet never look really right, do they? Plastic shoes just kind of dangling there. Always kind of askew. You always just see a little ankle, those little thin white fabric ankles that they have. And the thought creeps in: “You know, I think they’re trying to put something over on me here.”
I’ve always wanted to invite a woman up to my apartment for a nightcap then just give her one of those little hats that flops over on the side. “That’s all. I just wanted to give you that. You can go now. If you want to go out next week, I’ll give you a short robe that matches.”
Now if you do spend the night at somebody else’s house . . . Which happens. It could happen. It’s happened to a lot of people. . . . You always think to yourself, “I can handle this. It’s no big deal.” But your hair the next morning is the true reflection of how you really feel inside. Your hair freaks out when it wakes up at somebody else’s house. You go in the bathroom, it’s like, “This is not our sink, this is not our brush, this is not our mirror–Aaah!”
You have to keep it from panicking. “Would you just calm down! We’ll be home in a minute.”
What can you do at the end of a date when you know you don’t want to see this person ever again, for the rest of your life? What do you say? No matter what you say, it’s a lie. “I’ll see you around?” See you around? Where is that? “If you’re around, and I’m around, I’ll see you around that area. You’ll be around other people, though. You won’t be around me. But you will be around.”
“Take care now.” Did you ever say that to somebody? “Take care now. Take care, now
. Because I’m not going to be taking care of you. So you should take care of yourself now.”
“Take care, take care.” What does this mean, “Take care?”
“Take off.” Isn’t that what you really want to say? “Take off now. Get out of here.”
Excerpted from Seinlanguage by Jerry Seinfeld. Copyright © 2008 by Jerry Seinfeld. Excerpted by permission of Bantam, a division of Random House, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.