It Just Sucks


To be perfectly honest, I reveled in a personal era of good feelings after I sealed the deal with It’s Just Lunch. I was really thinking outside the box this time. My coping mechanisms in the face of desolate dateless-ness usually involves contacting ex-boyfriends, so the futility of that habit more than justified spending $1,800 on a service that might actually lead to something promising.

My office phone rang first thing on the Monday morning after my interview with Lizzie.

“Your first date is slated for Wednesday night!!!” Jenny, my newly assigned IJL rep, squealed through the phone in a voice that you only encounter in Chicago—rough, scratchy, and unequivocally indicative of the fact that she: (i) grew up on the South side; (ii) went to Mother McAuley High School; and (iii) spent the last night drinking Miller Light, chain smoking, and making out with a stranger, pinned against a Golden Tee machine somewhere on Lincoln Ave.

My first potential mate, Jeffrey, was described as “handsome.” In addition to the expected roster of impressive-sounding characteristics, Jenny referred to Jeffrey as a “really sincere, genuine guy.”

I arrived early in hopes that it would spare me the painfully self-conscious sensation of walking into the restaurant after Jeffrey and allowing him a glimpse of me nervously approaching the hostess.  And my strategy appeared to be successful.  There was no one within distance of the hostess stand except for a small, gay man in cowboy boots, tight jeans, and an embroidered Ted Baker dress shirt.  So imagine my surprise when the hostess said, “The other person in your party is already here,” and extended her hand towards him.

I recognize that there are multitudes of shades of gay on the spectrum, so let me be very clear: When I say that Jeffrey was gay, I don’t mean metrosexual—nor do I mean slightly effeminate or even ambiguous.  Jeffrey could only be described as a bitchy queen.  (Think Charlie from Shear Genius.) The last time I’d been in the presence of a guy as gay as Jeffrey, it was Wet Boxer Night at Roscoe’s.  I even caught myself copycatting his lisp when we discussed our favorite boutiques in Bucktown.  My signal to leave was when he asked the waiter if the bartender could perhaps prepare him a kumquat mojito.

Didn’t Lizzie or Jenny notice that Jeffrey wasn’t exactly the guy who straight girls fork over tons of money to meet?  The IJL team was presumably aiming to please with their first match-up, so was this the best they could come up with?  Wanting to remain optimistic, I accepted that cocktails with a gay man still beat a dinner date with a psychopath from my past—or the humiliation of sending around (yet another) mass email to my friends seeking set-up options.

I was brutally honest during my feedback call with Jenny. I cited Jeffrey as “too effeminate” and “too short,” to which she immediately replied:

“I have just the guy in mind. Brian.”

I immediately recognized Brian’s statistics as that of the accountant whose profile Lizzie read to me during my interview. How was it possible that I was already going on a date with the guy whose profile had been read as just a sample of the countless enticing options IJL supposedly provided? In any event, Jenny emphatically underscored Brian’s masculinity.

“He is really adventurous,” she assured. “In fact, he has even tried skydiving.”

Christ. Based on my experience with Jeffrey, if “sincere and genuine” was sales-speak for “flaming homosexual,” what the hell could “has tried skydiving” mean?

Nevertheless, I prettied myself up the following Monday and met Brian for drinks at Jenny’s suggested meeting place—Primehouse. (It’s hard not to feel ridiculous simply ordering a Ketel and soda from a waiter who just described the different marblings in multiple cuts of dry-aged beef.) Six minutes in, it became clear that “has tried skydiving” was pretext for “27 and recently divorced.” The only thing Jenny was right about was his “adventurous nature,” which he demonstrated during his creepy post-date hug at the valet stand and subsequent e-stalking.

I was pissed. Was I to believe that the only people desperate enough to spend $1,800 on IJL were the mothers of gay sons and divorced men? I can meet a divorced man any given weekend in Chicago for free. The whole point of this was to tap into some heretofore-unknown vein of interesting, fantastic guys who don’t pay alimony. I was drowning in a rising tide of hopelessness. And I wanted out.

I reviewed the disclaimers in the three-page IJL contract, and my professional opinion was that I completely signed away any legal claim for a refund. Those bastards had foreclosed every theoretical route to rescission with their countless disclaimers. I even tried researching common law, but unfortunately not even the Illinois Dating Referral Services Act—yes, there is such a thing—could provide me with any recourse.  An irate demand of Jenny to let me talk to her supervisor was a surefire way to end up stuck in another full-court press with Lizzie, so I just decided to suck it up and be patient.

Which is how I ended up trudging through the snow to meet Michael at an odd Greek restaurant just off of Michigan Avenue. Given the crap nature of the prior two dates, I decided not to risk hypothermia and changed out of my kitten heels and into my Uggs when I left the office. (Please note: In 2009—as in 2008—I only condone wearing Uggs while riding the bus to and from the office during inclement weather. No exceptions.) My suspicions about Michael arose as I approached him at the bar—his slight frame was ensconced in slim, Belgian-looking dress pants and a Prada cashmere v-neck layered over a Thomas Pink shirt. My suspicions were then confirmed when he took one look at me and quipped (archly), “Nice Ugg boots. However, your Rolex is beautiful.”

I sucked down Shiraz while Michael bragged about all the fabulous dinner parties he throws for his vast collection of friends—a group including several wealthy women in their late fifties. My cue to flee came right after he finished lecturing me about how the Japanese have a word, “umami,” to describe the overall flavor gestalt of a dish.

Which, again, brings me to the present. Still alone. Still $1,800 poorer. But now with absolutely no remaining faith in IJL or humanity. Any hope that fledgling domestic bliss is just around the corner is so dashed that I can’t even bear to fight for a refund. I guess I could continue to allow IJL to set me up. But it doesn’t take a statistician to figure out that an $1800 cover charge doesn’t weed out the bad umami.

As yet another (dateless) wedding season approaches, I guess the only consolation is that the Summer Associates arrive soon.  Maybe, just maybe, there’s a dark, dashing journalism-expat in the bunch that will sweep me off my feet. Although, thanks to the economy, the summer class has been whittled down from 85 to a more fiscally responsible 10, leaving me behind the eight ball yet again. Which, when it comes to dating, is a place I am growing accustomed to.

This post is a follow-up to “It’s Just (the Most Expensive) Lunch (Ever).

Law Firm 10 may lack the dazzling, magnetic charisma of a girl from the hottest sorority in school, but she (arguably) makes up for that with her wit, humor, and low-maintenance-ness. Read more from Law Firm 10.

37 Comments

  1. BL1Y

    April 2, 2009 at 7:13 am

    You weren’t “brutally honest” in your feedback about the first date.  Brutally honest would be “You set me up with a flaming homosexual.”

  2. Ace in the Hole

    April 2, 2009 at 7:16 am

    Jeez, if it weren’t for her unabashed gold-digging (“make me a millionaire stay at home mom”) and abject conceit (who refers to themselves as a 10?), you might even start to feel bad for this woman.  As it is though, she’s just one more bitching self-entitled whiner.  So, let’s get this straight, from your prior posts we can see that you’re a boring lawyer who hasn’t managed to hold on to a guy yet into your 30s and that you’re getting really desperate, enough to pay thousands of dollars for a dating service, but someone who’s divorced is just too much for you?  (Although yes, him having to pay alimony WOULD seem to interfere with your confessed plans to spend his money yourself…) Christ woman, your cluelessness is like a grain of sand on my eyeballs, it hurts like the dickens and even after you wash it out, it feels like it won’t go away…

  3. Anon

    April 2, 2009 at 7:50 am

    I dig this chick.

  4. Mr. Obvious

    April 2, 2009 at 8:14 am

    Hmmmm….  guys are “short,” no one is quite perfect enough for her ….. hmmmm…….
    I am suspecting the term “type A” may have entered the minds of some who have encountered this author.
    You know, some find that counseling is a much better approach than “it’s just lunch” or any other ‘dating’ or matchmaker-type services.
    Now she’s irate she cannot cancel a contract.  That she, a lawyer, signed.
    Why is this not surprising?
    : |

  5. @ Ace

    April 2, 2009 at 8:28 am

    She’s not saying she’s a 10 as in 10, she’s saying she’s an 8, but in BigLaw that is a 10.  Look around your own office or local bar.
    Great work again LF10! It really is a jungle out there. Trust me, I’m from a small town.  Chin up, even when you’re sporting the uggs (I totally support your inclimate weather/commuting rule).

  6. BL1Y

    April 2, 2009 at 8:55 am

    The $1800 would have been better spent getting bottle service for you and a couple friends a few times at a chic club.  It’s like IJL, but you’d actually meet some quality guys.

  7. Bandit

    April 2, 2009 at 9:19 am

    Men are like wine. They ripen with age. The older men get, the more mature (and less childish) they are. The wiser they get. The more charismatic they are. The less shallow they become. The more money they have. And the more impotent they become. These are all the important qualities that younger women want in their older men for marriage. Thus, just like wine, they become more expensive with age. But of course, even for wine, there exists a point where it becomes too old and not drinkable, thus have to be cast aside before it poisons anyone.
    Women, on the other hand, are like bread. Breads are best eaten when they are just out of the baking oven, when they are still warm and soft. Think of how good freshly baked Krispy Kreme tastes (and even better when it is the free sample). But if you put them on the table for too long, they get cold and mold will start to grow. Suddenly no one wants to eat them anymore, and they have to suffer a massive pay cut just to be sold. When women are young, beautiful and healthy, they are very demanding and idealistic. They want the perfect men. Brilliant, handsome, caring, sensitive, nice, and loaded. Not willing to settle for less, they waited for the perfect men. No one came knocking. They waited some more. Still no one. They lower their standards, and still no one. Eventually, they became desperate. Their parents nag, nosy relatives keep asking questions. At this point, instead for the perfect men, they will settle for any guys who are currently employed.

  8. Bill Dugan

    April 2, 2009 at 9:29 am

    The awipes on this site deleted my earlier comment.  Now I see others have said the same thing.  This is a spoiled beeotch to whom no one is good enough.  She is already starting to “turn” and in a few years, will not only not be a law firm 10 (more like a law firm 6), but a real world 3, albeit with money.  She’ll be one of those dowagers who people look at and say–gee she must once have been something more palatable than she is now.  But by then, the only men that will put up with her are losers interested only in the fact that she has some money in the bank.  Who knows if she’ll be desperate enough at that point to hook up with these losers.

  9. Craig

    April 2, 2009 at 10:09 am

    This girl is just looking for a good looking self absorbed, asshole with money; the kind of guy that would never pay $1800 for a dating service. They can go out any night of the week and get a girl. They are also staying far away from girls who are openly looking to marry on date one.  By the time they are looking to settle down, LF10 will think they are the creepy old guy. I have no doubt that a countless number of guys probably hit on you when you go to bar. And if you were willing to approach guys, would have no trouble getting a guy. Imagine the girls who are not that attractive. Who can’t get any guys to really be attracted to them. Be happy that you have the options that you do have.

  10. Alex Hump

    April 2, 2009 at 11:54 am

    Craig, we have no proof that this woman doesn’t look like a water buffalo.  She says she’s a 10, but trust me, so did my cousin, and she was a moose.  She is self-absorbed, and even if she was attractive, it wouldn’t matter. Given how self-absorbed she is, men determine quickly that she is NOT marriage material.  Men look at her as an opportunity for a quick lay or two, not for anything long-term.  After all, this is not the wench you want to bring home to show your family.  Best to keep this one in the bedroom for a weekly romp, but that’s it.

  11. Anonymous

    April 2, 2009 at 1:19 pm

    Alex, I think you are telling us that with women like this, it is best to simply “HUMP ‘EM then DUMP ‘EM?”

  12. Anon Female

    April 2, 2009 at 4:40 pm

    Very Very Funny LF10 rocks!!!!

  13. Anonymous

    April 3, 2009 at 6:20 am

    This woman is wondering why she’s single, dateless and hopeless?  What bona fide male would want to put up with this witch?  Here’s my solution:  If she would just (i) keep her trap shut (except when instructed to do otherwise), and (ii) F*** on demand like a bunny, she would have plenty of male suitors.

  14. Anon Female

    April 3, 2009 at 7:55 am

    what a loser comment below! you would be lucky to date LF10. why would a law firm 10 ever date someone who says keep your trap shut!! like a cave man…..sounds like you have an intimidation issue with attractive strong smart females. it’s like you must feel if you say all sorts of annoying negative comments then you win because you know a girl like that would never go out with you in the first place and then you don’t have to face the rejection.

  15. manda

    April 3, 2009 at 11:46 am

    I simply cannot get over how shallow this woman is.

  16. Hmmmm

    April 4, 2009 at 4:21 am

    Anon Female 8:55, would your name happen to be Alma?

  17. Anonymous

    April 4, 2009 at 11:34 am

    Agree with Hmmmm. below.  The stench is unmistakeable!

  18. Anon Female

    April 5, 2009 at 9:58 am

    No cave man my name is not Alma!

  19. BL1Y

    April 5, 2009 at 10:48 am

    Anon Female: Shut your trap.  You’d attract more flies with honey than…actually, you couldn’t possibly attract more flies.

  20. Free advice

    April 5, 2009 at 11:33 am

    Maybe LF10’s catching on that any guy worth keeping is already married by age 23.  And not divorced at 27.

  21. Anonymous

    April 6, 2009 at 6:41 am

    Agree with BL1Y.  The Anon Female needs a double dosage of feminine hygene treatment…pronto!

  22. Anon Female

    April 6, 2009 at 7:00 am

    BL1Y, spare me – you can save your comments for the girls that are lucky enough to date you! all I have to say is you sound like a huge tool and your comments are so lame. it’s hard to believe you are really a lawyer.

  23. Anonymous

    April 6, 2009 at 8:54 am

    Bring back the “BFW” (We want the Big Firm Whore); this LF 10 just doesn’t cut it.  And as for BL1Y, I think he’s cool.  So stuff it, Anon Female!!!!

  24. Headhunter 10

    April 6, 2009 at 10:05 am

    Dating services suck. Time to go Old-school, and not your old school-flings. Go to a bar, meet someone hot, avoid discussion of briefs, get laid. To quote someone else because I am admittedly not this clever, “For a woman, if on any given night you are NOT getting laid, it’s because YOU choose not to.”

  25. Anonymous

    April 6, 2009 at 11:27 am

    Headhunter 10—she’s not just looking to get laid.  Any woman who doesn’t look like a pig can get laid any nite of the week.  This beeotch is looking for a 3 carat ring and a rich hubby. Only then will sex be in the picture, and probably not that often.  Once he says I do, she will say I won’t.  So don’t get worked up thinking this broad is going to spread on command for any dickweed, because she won’t.

  26. Headhunter 10

    April 6, 2009 at 12:30 pm

    Anon—You may be right, though the calling of ex-boyfriends to reignite is indicative of a strong desire to get some without the requisite vetting process of new lays.

  27. Lorraine

    April 6, 2009 at 5:48 pm

    Sounds like LF10 is too much fabulous woman for you boys…..

  28. Headhunter 10

    April 7, 2009 at 9:31 am

    You’re right Lorraine. Now where was I…. Oh yes. Back here in reality (if you can call online commenting reality), desperation is not attractive. Or fabulous. Career-driven, intelligent, witty and sarcastic is. At least to me. Keep up the good work LF10.

  29. Anon

    April 7, 2009 at 2:22 pm

    I dig LF 10.

  30. Wilbur Moore

    April 8, 2009 at 6:19 pm

    I think LF 10 should just hook up and bang Headhunter 10.  He’s been pining for her for months, and maybe if he’s good enough in the sack, she’ll take a sabbatical from writing to bang him, rest up, and bang some more.  In the meantime we can get someone much less annoying to whine and moan in this webspace.

  31. First Year

    April 9, 2009 at 4:51 am

    Don’t be afraid to tell your matchmaker “No.” After I IJL set me up with “Sanjeev,” a short, hairy Indian guy who had absolutely no hobbies other than watching ultimate fighting, I have listened VERY closely to the descriptions they give.  I had a bad feeling about Sanjeev’s description, and I was right. 
    They recently tried to set me up with a guy name “John” who is in “pharmaceutical sales” (i.e. he self-medicates) and who likes to do outdoorsy things like go to the lake with his friends (and get drunk), go tailgaiting (and get drunk), go waterskiing (and get drunk) and anything relating to college sports (because he’ll never realize he already graduated). 
    So, I told IJL “No, thanks.” This totally threw them for a loop.  They didn’t even call me back for 1 week, and when they did, they told me they were “working on” getting information on a new guy who they described as “tall, athletic and from New York.” I asked for more information, so now they’re flipping out and my matchmaker is going to “call me back.”
    I only paid $900, so I’m not in the hole that badly.  That being said, I would definitely raise my concerns if I were you!

  32. Sanjay Gupta

    April 9, 2009 at 7:59 am

    First Year, what kind of winner are you, anyway?  What’s wrong with a hairy Indian?  It can get pretty cold at night, and I would venture to state that being snuggled next to him is much preferable to having to get up and stoke the fire with more and more patties of dried cow-dung.  You would do well to date such a person.  He might show you that you have a lot to learn.  Beeotch!

  33. Headhunter 10

    April 9, 2009 at 12:37 pm

    I don’t know about months, Wilbur. Just the last two posts. But hey, I do appreciate the support. No need to be rude to my girl though….

  34. no it fucking isn't

    April 9, 2009 at 7:58 pm

    This blog is completely believable.

  35. SS

    April 11, 2009 at 10:50 am

    Enough with the classism. Maybe your contact did grow up drinking in cemeteries on the South Side and maybe she’s drinking High Life, but hey, at least she’s getting some action.

  36. Ashley

    April 18, 2009 at 5:45 pm

    Thank you thank you thank you for saving me the money I would have spent on IJL, I’ll just stick with my 5 at a time netflix and wait for an asteroid to hit the planet.

  37. Mildly Entertained

    June 11, 2009 at 4:21 pm

    LOL. At least Jenny spent her night with someone.

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