IT HAPPENED TO ME: My Craigslist Date Surprised Me With a Threesome

I remember actually saying “What could go wrong?” out loud with my actual mouth, and boy howdy did I learn my lesson.
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Publish date:
June 9, 2015
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Tags:
Dating, Queer Dating, Surprise Threesome, Only In Texas

When I was in my mid-20s either Craigslist dating was a significantly less terrifying place or I was too naïve to know better.

Whatever the case, I occasionally resorted to posting ads in the w4w section looking for women who wanted to date a fat, pasty, ginger-haired nerd in the Houston area. It was a big city with a surprisingly large queer population, but I couldn’t quite figure out how to meet women.

Predictably the majority of the responses I got were horrifying in a variety of creative ways, ranging from nearly incoherent offers of sexual favors to actual messages from men to the dreaded threesome offer.

Any queer woman on a dating site has probably gotten an invitation into a threesome by someone who clearly has no idea that being a lesbian, bisexual or pansexual woman is not synonymous with “I want to be your husband’s birthday present.”

So I was surprised when I got a decent response. She wasn’t a huge nerd like I was but seemed to appreciate and enjoy my nerdery and even expressed an interest in watching some of my shows with me. She had two kids, a boy and a girl, and spent most of her free time carting them back and forth between different events and work.

When she did have down time she loved to cook and garden, two things we had in common. We swapped emails for a couple of weeks before we finally exchanged phone numbers. Our phone calls went as well as our emails did; we seemed to really hit it off.

Finally we decided to take that last step and agreed on a time and place to meet up in person. We lived decently far apart so we picked a restaurant between the both of us and I nervously set about trying to figure out what someone wore on a promising date.

Flash forward to the day of our date. Helen* gives me a call early afternoon, tone entirely apologetic as she tells me that her sitter had canceled. She said she knew her place was really far for me, but she really wanted to meet me and if I made it up there I’d have a homemade dinner with my name on it when I arrived.

We could do dinner and a movie and she’d just put her kids down a little early so we’d still have some private get to know you time. I’m always impressed by adults that put their kids first, folks who are good parents, so this was an easy sell. I readily agreed and told her to surprise me on the dinner. I remember actually saying “What could go wrong?” out loud with my actual mouth, and boy howdy did I learn my lesson.

When she said she lived far from where I did, she wasn’t kidding. She lived off a gravel road somewhere between New Caney and Splendora, something my Corolla didn’t entirely appreciate, and the only light in the area by the time I arrived came from the occasional porch lights left lit on the double wide trailers in the neighborhood. There was a small set of stairs that led to her porch, left open with just a screen door closed. The inside of her apartment looked like a southern craft faire threw up cow print on every available surface. The couch had a cow throw rug, the cushions were covered in actual cow hide, and I distinctly remember a wood carved hand painted cow hanging on the wall assuring me that “Jesus Moooves This House.”

But hey, it was Texas. And I’d certainly seen people with stranger tastes in decoration. I shrugged it off as she welcomed me inside, beckoning me towards the kitchen.

As it turned out my homemade dinner was some microwaved trays from Walmart. I was a little disappointed, but she was a single mom, I thought. She had a job and kids to look after. No big deal.

We all ate, and the kids were delightful. She put them down early as promised, though, and motioned towards her movie tower so we could pick something out. Figuring she didn’t get to watch movies that didn’t feature dancing dinosaurs or animated monkeys very often I told her to pick out whatever she liked. With a short laugh, she pulled out the Hannah Montana movie.

“Ha, yeah, I bet you have to watch that stuff a lot,” I joked.

“No, but really, it’s my favorite movie. Let’s watch it.” It took me about 30 seconds to realize Helen was completely serious.

While I learned all about the trials and tribulations of being a famous singer while simultaneously trying to stay true to your country roots, I tried to make small talk. The point of this date was to get to know each other, after all.

But each time I tried she shushed me, frowning a little in annoyance and curtly informing me that I was missing an important part of the film. I started to formulate an escape plan for the night. Helen could like whatever she wanted, but it was clear that we weren’t exactly meshing.

The movie ended at about 11 at night and I stood and thanked for a good time, but I had a long drive home ahead of me so I’d better hit the road. It was then she looked anxiously to the door, still wide open with just the screen door closed, and I turned to glance behind me to see what was going on.

Off in the distance I saw this small light. A motorcycle, or a car with a broken headlight I assumed. I turned back to her, trying to tie up our small talk as she didn’t seem too keen on letting me leave just yet. I backed my way towards the door with stealth and grace worthy of its own dedicated X-Box achievement and was about to make my final goodbye when I heard it.

I turned around again, and that light was closer. And it was rumbling. I stared at it incredulously as it pulled up into her yard, sure I was seeing things, but sure enough parked in Helen’s front yard was now a green John Deere tractor.

The man driving it was wearing a white undershirt and a pair of jeans that had both seen better days along with a dark red baseball cap. He was grinning as he hopped off and bounded up the stairs. He opened it without invitation, and Helen rushed up to give him a kiss and wrap her arm around his waist.

“Natalie, I’d like you to meet my husband.”

It took years of southern indoctrination to keep my face to be as still and expressionless as it must’ve been in that very moment, because my mind went completely silent. There had never been any mention of a husband. Never any mention of a boyfriend, nothing of the kind. There weren’t even any photos around to indicate that this man was a part of her family’s life.

Before I could figure out how to respond to this sudden assault on my perception of reality it became very quickly apparent by the way they’d positioned themselves between me and the door, the looks they were giving me and the tone of the conversation that they were expecting me to stay the night. With both of them.

It took all my Texan training to manage to politely and calmly ask her why she never mentioned having a husband before, and she just shrugged and went “Does it really matter? We’re just girls. Girls don’t count.”

She said this with such self-assurance that I honestly didn’t even know how to respond. I just knew I needed to talk myself out of the room.

Neither of them picked up on my unease, apparently, because the man then attempted what I have to assume are his best wooing maneuvers on me. He started by setting the stage to impress me with how badass he was by letting me know that he screamed and cussed at children as often as he screamed and cussed at adults.

“If they’re acting like jackasses I’m gonna treat ‘em like jackasses. They gotta grow up sometime.”

I didn’t think I’d gain much ground by pointing out that screaming and cussing at kids wasn’t the best motivation to get them to stop being jackasses, so I let it go.

His second maneuver was supposed to convince me of how smart he was, I have to assume, because he was really proud of the story. This was back when Netflix just mailed you DVDs, no streaming options existed. What he would do is take the DVDs, copy them onto another DVD, and send the disc back. Well, one time he put the burned DVD in the return envelope as well and unsurprisingly Netflix banned him for life. He was actually annoyed by this, talking about how it was just one slip-up and Netflix hadn’t warned him or anything.

“This is what this country’s turning into. We’re all a bunch of socialists now.” I’m pretty sure he had no idea what a socialist actually is.

Thankfully by this story he’d taken his seat in the cow print arm chair and his wife had dutifully brought him a beer, meaning the path between me and the door was clear. I reiterated that I had to go, and he frowned, but acknowledged that it was late and I lived far away. Needless to say, there was no second date.

About a month later a couple new feed items popped up on my Facebook wall. I’d completely forgotten that during the weeks we spoke before we met up Helen and I had added each other.

The first mentioned that she’d just found out that her husband had been cheating on her with three other women, and the second was that she’d updated her status from “single” to “divorced.”

To this day, I’m not sure which of us dodged a bullet.