The strange things people have done on dates.

Loving the Strange
Loving the Strange
The strange things people have done on dates.

Hey! Welcome to episode 18 of LOVING THE STRANGE where we talk about the strange, adorable things people do on dates!

Dates. What are those long lost things?

Thank you all so much for listening! This wouldn’t be fun if you weren’t here.

So here are a few stories.

I was set up by a coworker with his wife’s cousin. I worked in a deli at a grocery store. So our first meeting I was in a hair net and apron and no make up. I barely remembered what he looked like but we must have hit it off because the next day my coworker said the guy wanted to swap phone numbers. I wasn’t from this area so i was nervous when he invited me to a town I never heard of April fool’s for a bonfire. I took a chance and found my way there. When I arrived it was only me and him at his friends farm, no one had arrived yet. I was nervous. Once others arrived we went muddin in his truck amd danced under the stars in the light of the fire. His friend’s truck got stuck in the mud so my date went to help pull him out and his truck got stuck. They ended up dragging it out with a tractor but the truck wasnt in neutral so the tie rod end snapped. My date was upset so someone handed him a bottle of homemade wine. He got drunk but we still had a good time. At the end of the date he walked me to my car and said he was gonna go sleep on top of a silo. I was nervous he was gonna roll off and fall to his death…. So that was an awkward but memorable first date…. We have been together for a total of 10 yrs , 8.5 of those years we have been married. Still going strong

Amanda Courtney

Sad I missed this. My hubby and I connected online and our first date was in a nature park. I took us on a short cut off the trail to visit some horses that live on the backside of the park and we ended up lost in the woods for three hours

Autumn Gin

First one: I rode with a friend to her mom’s for the weekend (so I didn’t have a car) and they left to go somewhere on that Saturday. I had a friend (he was a guy) come pick me up to get Steak ‘n Shake. While we were eating my female friend came to get me to take me to her place. She comes in and goes “is this a date?” While I was saying “no” he was saying “yes”. Needless to say it was very awkward after that. 😂


Second one: I left an event early to meet up with this guy. He had an hour to travel to my two hours. When I got to the place we were supposed to meet I waited for like 15 mins before I found out he left. He told me he liked for people to be on time. For the record he never told me he was mad or that he was about to leave. He just left. side note: I ended up getting lost along the way so it took longer than two hours to get there Bonus story! It’s not a date but it is kinda strange and had to share (if it doesn’t fit though it’s okay ☺️) my friend at the time called me up one night. I answered and said “hello”. He proceeded to play Collied by Howie Day and sang the entire song to me. When it ended he just acted like nothing happened. To this day I have no idea what it was about but it’s the only time I’ve been serenaded 😂😂

Anonymous again. Also, um, the song was COLLIDE. 🙂

An all day date. Back when I was in high school I had a crush on this guy for a few months, and he FINALLY asked me out. Texted me the night before and was like “hey, I have rowing later in the day. Can we do a movie at like 10am?” I was totally fine with it, so that was our plan. He came, picked me up, and we saw the movie —- after the fact he looked at me and told me that he wanted to blow off the rest of his plans for the day and spend it with me. The second activity was bowling, which I’m atrocious at. I told him this, and he said that he was super good at bowling and maybe it would rub off on me, which I said maybe I’d be lucky this time. So every time we would take our turns, after his he would make a BIG show of “wiping off” his body and “rolling” all of his luck into a ball and throwing it to me (it was actually the best I’ve ever bowled). From there we went to dinner, and then went to every dock around the lake that we live on. On the final dock, we were skipping rocks and he kissed me — it was my first kiss and I was literally shaking excited and nervous. It wasn’t anything SUPER special, but I’ll always remember it.


It was my second date with this guy, and he said the exact same things that he said on the first date. Word for word. The same stories, the same “random thoughts,” the same questions… It freaked me out so much that at first I played along and answered in the exact same way, as though we were both following some weird script. Eventually I tried to break the mold and ask him new things, but he would just bring it back around to the same topics as last time. It was like I was in a computer program and there was a glitch. Still freaks me out to think of it.

Reddit User IHaveTheMustacheNow – THE GLITCHING MATRIX

I had just moved to London, and met this guy on a dating website, he was generally not my type. Still, I was fresh out of a long term damaging relationship and trying to meet new people yada, yada.

Fast forward to the date, and he takes a call from a girl and he says to her – ‘oh i’m just in the pub with (male roommates name)’ I can hear her on the other end getting worked up about something and him telling her to calm down. Alarm bells already ringing.

He hangs up the phone and says ‘that was my fiance, but not a real one, just one i’m with for her visa’ At this point I’m already thinking ‘bloody hell’. He continued on with his excuse ‘She also lives with me’ (in his 2 bed apartment with this other roommate – cosy). ‘Oh yeah, I should probably tell you i’m getting married in three weeks’

At this exact point, I just said ‘well, I’m going home’ and start pulling on my coat.

His reply was even more classic, ‘do you want to help me buy groceries first?’

Reddit User Clarieinthesnow

We had been talking on the phone for about a month already. He tells me his car is booted – outside of his house. He had a long drawn out story about how he could not get the boot removed. His dad was staying with him and he thought would be able to use his dad’s car but now he can’t. So I go to get him to go somewhere to eat. He starts panicking saying, “oh great, now I’m in the car with you and I’m going to get accused of rape or something.” I asked him what the hell he was talking about. He just kept rocking in his seat anxiously, worried that he would be accused of rape. I drove to the nearest area with food and asked him where he wanted to go. He said he had no money and wanted to go home. So I took him home. Then he asked me if he could borrow $20. I don’t know why, but I gave it to him. After this, he called me repeatedly and I ignored his calls. He texted me asking why he was “not good enough for me to date.” I kept ignoring him.

Fast forward 3 years. He is on a dating site I am on. He messages me but does not remember who I am. He tells me that a year ago his long time girlfriend passed away – the one he had lived with for 10 years. So, he was not staying with his dad, and he was freaking out because he lived with his girlfriend when he met me, right outside of his house. I called him out on it and he tried to pretend I had the wrong guy. But he had the same name and worked at the same place, and looked like the same guy. Very bizarre.

Reddit User Elleseven

Cool dating ideas from (Direct quote)

1. Play in the snow, build a snow man, then drink cocoa

2. Go to a community play, a dress rehearsal, high school or college play

3. Do an inside or outside picnic 

4. Work out together

5. Go roller skating or ice-skating

6. Movie marathon with ice cream sundaes

7. Play hide and seek in a corn field (or the woods)

8. Go on a very long walk around your neighborhood at night

9. Go to a real- live movie store, pick out a movie together then pop homemade popcorn at home 

10. Go to estate sales together

11. Spa night together

From PSILOVEYOU – How not to be a dick on a date.


Show up.

TALK THE WHOLE TIME – just you. Only you. Monloguer.

The good morning text.

Have some swagger but not too much swagger

Don’t go somewhere creepy unless you know the other person is into creepy.

Thank you all so much for listening! The extra shout-outs go to our high level patrons who also read Carrie’s books in progress and get some art in the mail sometimes.

Autumn Gin

Claire De Brey

Jenn Duffield

Pam Leffler

Joan Stradling

Nancy Stone

Sam Spellacy

Toni Floback

Shay Altair

Rachael Azbill


Five Things That Make Me Go “Ick” – My Biggest Book Turnoffs and People Turnoffs

So one day I was driving Em to school and Bob and Sheri, this talk show, was on the radio and the hosts were having callers tell them about what was a huge turn-off. You know, what is it that happens when you are on a date that makes a great big red light flash in your head and you go: WHOA! THIS DUDE/DUDETTE IS NOT FOR ME!

I’ve had a lot of these moments. *Cough. Cough* However, I’ve decided to make a top five list. Yes, I am limiting myself to five.


*Note: All of these have actually happened to me before.

1. A CRIMINALLY Abusive Past

Finding a restraining order under the front seat of his car on your first date when he is out of the car pumping gas.

Actually, my dog found this and I had to take it out of his doggy mouth. Let’s just say protection orders are never good to find under the seat on a first date.

He ended up stalking me for awhile.

2. General Freakyness

He has an apartment with absolutely no pictures on the walls, no knickknacks, no litter, no nothing.

Nothing says serial killer like this. Honestly, I was looking for big, blue tarps and duct tape.

3. MESSY and/or Loud Eating

They possess the inability to get food in their mouth and instead gets it in their hair, my hair, their chin, the table, the floor, etc….

It’s just gross. Plus, it’s a waste of food.

4.Putting on the Passive-Aggressive Compliments.

Telling me I look like a bag lady. Not charming. Even if you add in ‘cute,” as in…. Hey, you look like a bag lady if bag ladies were cute.

To be fair, though, I was wearing a lot of clothes. Seriously. Maine is cold in winter. Sometimes you have to layer. A lot.

5. Being A Horrible Human Being

Telling me that I look like a good breeder because even though I don’t have hips, I’m pale and I have blue eyes? Sorry. Racists and guys who think of women as ‘breeders’ are not a turn on. Ever. Also, you don’t know what is hanging out in my DNA and heritage.

Hint: I’m not as white as I present, but man? Do I present as really white? I truly do. Is that my race? Yes, it is. Unless, you’re a eugenist and then… no.

So what about you? Have you ever been on a date where you were like: Nope. Nuh-uh. Never again.

Five things that make me go "ick" about books and life partners. Things that are super turnoffs

And as I was thinking about this, I realized that there are ways books do this to me, too. Everyone’s turn-offs are different, but here are my current top five.

The love interest is abusive and it’s supposed to be a romance. 

Yeah. No. Enough said.

Everyone is white and straight and rich and able bodied. 

Because… well, I don’t like books that are that kind of creepy.

Really, really bad grammar AND SPELLING.

Stuff like:

‘Your a villain’, he sayid.

‘No freakin’g, way, in a million years” ! she said,

Characters that don’t sound like people.

You know what I mean, right? There’s a super famous, multi-million dollar book that became a movie that’s a first person narrative and I swear the main character sounds like a pretentious 50-year-old man who wears a lot of tweed and only drinks craft scotch while sculling. To be fair, I think I’m the only person who feels this way because all my friends adore this book.

Or the books without contractions and everyone sounds like a computer-generated scam call. I’m totally not into that unless it’s on purpose for a specific character and they get called out on it.


Yeah. No. Again. It’s not something I can handle.


I don’t care about what the character looks like enough to read a paragraph about her looking in the mirror and talking about what she looks like AS IF SHE HAS NEVER SEEN HERSELF BEFORE!

I can about what the character does, thinks, says, feels, but her looks? His looks? Not so much.

Marsie only cares about whether or not people will feed her. And also if they pet her. Not how they look.

How about you? What are you biggest people turn-offs? Your biggest book turn-offs? Teach us all what not to do! And how does this have to do with my Monday Motivation theme? Knowing what we don’t like? It helps us to go after and experience what we love.

If you enjoyed this post, I’d be so super grateful if you’d help it spread by emailing it to a friend, or sharing it on Twitter or Facebook or Pinterest. Thank you! I know it’s a super small thing, but it means so much to me. Writing tips and help from NYT bestselling author Carrie Jones


Okay. I hope you don’t mind me sharing this, but I earned out my picture book biography of Sara Emma Edmonds!!!!

This is such a huge thing for me that I can’t begin to tell you how cool it feels especially since it’s with this picture book. Sara was this cool woman who dressed like a man so she could fight in the U.S. Civil War, but then her superiors asked her to dress like a woman and spy on the other side. So, she was a woman dressed like a man dressed like a woman and taking names the entire time. So amazing. Thank you so much to everyone who bought it!




The awesome 6-month-long Writing Barn classthat they’ve let me be in charge of!? It’s happening again in July. Write! Submit! Support!is a pretty awesome class. It’s a bit like a mini MFA but way more supportive and way less money.


“Carrie has the fantastic gift as a mentor to give you honest feedback on what needs work in your manuscript without making you question your ability as a writer. She goes through the strengths and weaknesses of your submissions with thought, care and encouragement.”

I swear, I did not pay anyone to say that. I didn’t even ask them to say it. The Writing Barn just told me that the feedback had intensely kind things like that.


These books are out there in the world thanks to Tor.

What books? Well, cross Buffy with Men in Black and you get… you get a friends-powered action adventure based in the real world, but with a science fiction twist. More about it is here. But these are fun, fast books that are about identity, being a hero, and saying to heck with being defined by other people’s expectations.

This quick, lighthearted romp is a perfect choice for readers who like their romance served with a side of alien butt-kicking actionSchool Library Journal


Time Stoppers’s third book comes out this summer. It’s been called a cross between Harry Potter and Percy Jackson, but with heart. It takes place in Acadia National Park in Bar Harbor, Maine. I need to think of awesome ways to promote it because this little book series is the book series of my own middle grade heart. Plus, I wrote it for the Emster. Plus, it is fun.

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