Joshua Harmon’s Significant Other takes a look at single gay twentysomething Jordan Berman, whose best friends are all getting married like a row of toppling dominoes. In between weddings, Jordan (played by Gideon Glick) dates around in hopes of finding his partner, but hits all the possible pitfalls along the way.
On the first day of rehearsals for the Broadway bow of Significant Other, which opened to critical acclaim Off-Broadway in 2015, we ask the cast to share their own dating disasters.
“I think [the worst is] when signals are not being read—either from me to the guy or from the guy to me, where I think it’s going well, and he doesn’t or vice versa. Those are the saddest dates.”
“I definitely had a guy fall asleep on me during a date. Does that count? He was very drunk…and tired, I guess. I don’t know if I bored him or not. I went to the bathroom, and I came back, and he had fallen asleep after four whiskeys. Also, I [thought], “Why are you drinking that much?” Trust me, I ran.”
“I once had a date with a boy from The King Ranch. It’s the biggest family ranch in South Texas; it’s legendary. I was fixed up with him. He came in his cowboy boots and his hat. I was in high school, and there was a rule in Corpus Christi, Texas, [where] you never kissed a boy on the first date. Never. I kissed him on the first date, and I thought I was going to go straight to hell. I called up the girl who fixed me up, and her father, who was a judge, answered the phone. It was 11 o’clock at night. I said, ‘Judge Campbell.’ He said, ‘Barbara, it is 11 o’clock. What is the matter with you?!’ I can’t even remember [my date’s] name, [but I said], ‘I kissed him on the first date, and I think I’m doomed!’ That’s what I really thought—I had done such a terrible thing, and my life was over. You only kissed on the third date if you wanted to kiss in Texas, and you certainly never went to bed with anybody. Oh, never!”
Rebecca Naomi Jones
“A couple of years ago, I had gone through a really horrible breakup, and I decided to try OkCupid for the first time. I went on a couple of dates, and none of them were bad, but… This is a horrible thing to say: There was this guy, who was really cute in a hipster-y way in his photo—really tall and sort of scruffy, but handsome. When we met, and he smiled, I realized why he didn’t smile in his photos. [His teeth] were like… mangled. Mangled! It’s rough because then you [think], ‘Woah, hold it together! Don’t stare! Don’t make that person feel uncomfortable.’ I can find a lot of things sexy, but I think it was the surprise element that really threw me.”
“I’ve been dating my husband for ten years, but actually [we] started off really rocky. I was obsessed with him in college, and I do not say that lightly—like Swimfan stalker. He was not interested, let’s say, [but] I remember there was one time where I thought we finally broke through. I thought we were going to go on a date. We met at the University of Michigan, and I thought we were going to go to a burger spot [together]. I thought this was our date, and he showed up with his other friend, so I realized quickly it wasn’t a date. I always like to say our honeymoon period is now, after being together for like ten years and married.”
“I’ve done the online dating thing in New York, and there have been instances where you go, ‘You don’t look like that picture,’ and ‘You lied about your age.’ That’s a thing! I had one particularly bad one on a Sunday afternoon. The girl I met up with had a couple drinks and was just not in it. Thankfully, I’ve actually had a lot more positive [dates] than not. I like talking to people.”
“Any Tinder date! I feel like in those situations, I’m too nice. I try not to tell people I’m an actor because as soon as you do people just want to know, especially in those situations, what famous people you know or, ‘What TV show would I know you from?’ Then you spend your life talking like you would talk to your agent instead of your [date]. I’m too polite to cut it off, so then the date goes on for two hours, and you suddenly had three drinks, and I didn’t even want one!”