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A Bad Date

Ice Skating with Tiff

By Kenny PennPublished 10 months ago 5 min read
Midjourney Bot + Kenny Penn

In hindsight, I should have expected the date to end in disaster.

The day started off wrong. That was the first clue. We planned to go hiking a local trail, a hobby we both enjoyed according to our profiles on eHarmony. What better way to get to know someone than to go on a nature walk together?

People say plans sometimes go awry. Well, my plans never seem to go right. That Saturday wasn't any different. I had just finished showering and started shaving when my cell rang.

"Hey mom. You on the way?"

"Hey, Michael." Something was off. Mom always calls me, 'hunny', or 'baby boy', unless she has something serious to talk about.

"What's wrong?"

"I'm sorry, Michael. Daddy's sick, so we can't take care of Tiff today."

Well shit. So much for the nature walk. I hung up with mom and sat down on my bed to text Amanda.

'Hey, beautiful.'

I get an almost immediate response. Normally I'd consider that a good thing, but now I'm only disappointed.

'Hey back! I just stopped at Target to grab a water bottle. Need anything?'

Man, this really sucks. I shut my eyes and squeeze the bridge of my nose. 'Actually, my babysitter just bailed on me. Really sorry, can I give you a rain check?'

A full minute passes before she responds. Long enough for me to think I've blown it, but then I see she's writing a response and I allow myself to hope.

'You have a kid? Your profile didn't mention that.'

Shit. Well, I see where this is going.

'Yeah, she's 18 months old. I don't usually throw out the baby thing until the second date.'

Another pause. This one shorter. 'I think that's cute. How would you feel about ice skating tonight instead? Bring the baby and I can meet you both?'

Sweet! Not the answer I expected, but hey. I guess it's lucky I'm a guy. I know, ladies, if it was the other way around, the dude probably would have said sayonara and been back on the dating site within the hour. Don't blame me, though, blame society.

Anyway I reply hell yeah with a new pep in my step, and finish shaving before Tiff wakes up and leaves me with half my face unfinished.

A few hours later I take Tiff out for some Chinese, and a couple hours after that we're at Frosty's Ice Skating and Hockey Palace, waiting on the lady of the hour.

She arrives, and I got to say she is the whole package. Beautiful in all the right places, looks exactly like her profile pic (in your face, Nev Schulman), and we click immediately.

First thing Amanda does after shaking my hand is to kneel in front of Tiff and exclaim about how beautiful she is, how cute her little pink jacket looks and all that jazz. Tiff grins when Amanda gives her a little tickle under the chin, and that's how we start the night.

Finally, something going my way! It's been a while since I've had a reason to feel hopeful. Maybe this one will stick around for more than a couple dates. Her smile makes my heart want to skip a beat plus she's an easy talker. I'm a natural listener, so it works well for both of us.

After a while she asks if I'd like to go out on the ice. I say yeah but ask her if she'd watch Tiff for a minute while I warm up a bit. It's been a few months since I went skating last and I want to make sure I haven't forgotten how before I carry my baby girl out there.

No hesitation, Amanda just lifts Tiff from her carrier and starts making baby noises at her as if the two of them were born friends. I really think I've hit the jackpot at this point.

Before long she's skating next to me. We move along the outside edge of the rink and keep it slow. Tiff loves it, alternating between drooly grins and boring her head in my chest.

Amanda and I chit chat about all the usual nonsense that people talk about on first dates. How do you like your job and family and by the way are you a dead beat or do you have real life goals? She asks about my divorce but mostly we're just feeling each other out.

It's all going great until I hear a commotion behind me. I turn to look and see several teenagers with faces looking like they had either just eaten the world's most sour lemons, or someone had let a good one rip.

It turns out to be the latter.

They were saying something I couldn't make out and pointing at a brown trail on the ice behind me. I follow the trail with my eyes, feeling an awful sensation of dread begin to settle in my stomach. The trail leads right to my skate, continues up my pant leg and the bottom of my shirt, to Tiff.

I hold her away from me, realizing much too late my poor baby had a blowout. A really bad one. Perhaps Chinese hadn't been such a good idea after all. The mess had leaked out of her diaper, onto her clothes and onto my arm.

Amanda sees what happened and turns quite a few shades paler before color returns. Only it isn't a healthy color, more like pea soup. The next thing I know, she loses her dinner on the ice.

I won't gross you out with descriptions of look and smell. Let it be enough to say that she causes a chain reaction, starting with two of the teenagers who'd been skating behind us.

It's been two weeks since that night, and she hasn't called me back or texted. Not even to acknowledge my apologies. I can't say I blame her.

#Author's Note: Thank your for reading. This story is a short piece i wrote for the NYC Midninght "Flash Fiction" Competition. I hope you enjoyed reading it as much as I enjoyed writing.


About the Creator

Kenny Penn

Thanks for reading! I enjoy writing in various genres, my favorites being horror/thriller and dark/epic fantasies. I'll also occasionally drop a poem or two.

For a list of all my work, and to connect with me, go to

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Comments (5)

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  • Hannah Moore2 months ago

    Ouch. Onr of my babies once did something similar down a very fashion conscious friend's very expensive jeans. Fortunately we had 15 years of friendship backing us up.

  • Rowan Finley 7 months ago

    Oh my goodness, I’m sorry that she didn’t text you back for another date as you seem like a great person. Her loss! Kids have accidents and that’s just life.

  • Jazzy 8 months ago

    This was horrendously funny and tragic all in one! 🥲 a really good read regardless I liked the flow a lot

  • Jay Kantor8 months ago

    Hi Kenny - So glad that I've discovered you as I bopped over to the 'Humor' category; that's my favorite Schtick-Slot. *As I scroll through your incredibly eclectic offerings as an original StoryTeller; a novelty of late. *I've subscribed to you with pleasure. Jay Jay Kantor, Chatsworth, California 'Senior' Vocal Author - Vocal Author Community -

  • Kendall Defoe 10 months ago

    I have had worse, actually... ha, ha, ha. Thank you for this one! ;)

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