Brandon* was the second guy I dated. He was handsome with green eyes, brown skin and an easy smile. I liked him a lot, but our relationship was doomed from the beginning.
He met me on campus on a Friday afternoon by the Bruin Bear for our first date. We walked over to his green Ford Explorer. He unlocked the passenger side door for me and opened the door. I got in, smoothed out my skirt and sat down. He shut the door and walked behind the car.
I just sat there.
A moment later, Brandon unlocked his door, got in and started the car.
“Have you ever seen A Bronx Tale?”
“Well, there’s this thing called the door test and you just failed it.”
Brandon explained what I’d done wrong, or rather what I hadn’t done. While he was walking around the car, I should have unlocked and opened his door. Instead, I just waited and assumed the door would be unlocked as I was used to keyless entry and automatic locks.
“I should dump you right now,” he continued.
He didn’t dump me then. Instead, we had a great a dinner, had fun at a party and continued dating each other. A few weeks later the initial spark fizzled and we were through.
I lost contact with Brandon about 5 years ago**, but I still remember his lesson. It might not be the most significant thing I’ve learned from someone I’ve dated, but it’s definitely useful.
At least I don’t get dumped after the first date… it just comes a little later.
* Name changed to protect the innocent.
** Last time I saw him was outside of the Avalon in Hollywood in ’04. He looked good. Don’t you hate when that happens?.
*** Thanks to Joel for inspiring this piece with his own post on the topic and his reaction to my confession: “I am shocked, shocked that you of all people would fail the door test! I would never think that about you. I feel like I just found out you have a weekend coke habit or that you’re a closet republican… wow… just wow…”