The Story of Zoolander


When I was about eighteen, I met a Danish model named Lars at some weird hippie trade show at Javits center. We would spent long winter evenings circling Astor Place, philosophizing about life, until I would get so cold that I would hustle him into Starbucks and buy us venti Tazo teas to avoid catching pneumonia. This is when I learned an important lesson that every self-respecting female should keep close to her heart: never, ever date models.

Which is why I have nobody to blame but myself for the disaster that occurred to me this past Thursday, when I decided, in the name of exploratory research, to have drinks with a 33-year-old male model, a gem I discovered in the vast reserves of Tinder.

To my credit, I’ve been working lot. I’m always tired. I feel like I have no social life, let alone any admirers waiting on the back burner, eager to massage away my computer-induced back cramps. If I were a man, this would be the moment I would realistically consider calling an escort. Since I’m a woman, the only thing I can realistically consider is scouring Tinder while taking a break from humanity in the office bathroom.

Albeit attractive in a distinguished, Acqua di Gio sort of way, this guy seemed a bit too old to be a model. However, he affirmed that this was, indeed, his primary occupation, adding that he did not like people judging him for what he did for a living. It turned out that he preferred to “think more about passion, design, art, writing, and thoughts”. Curious, I inquired if he was a designer, or, perhaps, a writer. He wasn’t. My friends decided that he must be a thinker.

Yes, I know, I should have run. However, I figured that somebody with that chiseled of a jaw deserved a chance to prove himself in person. After all, he was French, which meant that he had to have some degree of depth and substance (they make your read enough depressing literature here to exercise even the most primitive of minds).

It turns out, I was wrong.

I arrived to my neighborhood brasserie around 11pm, exhausted after a work event, yet still energetic enough to muster up some small talk. Zoolander greeted me, looking like the picture of male perfection in his dark jeans and freshly-pressed light blue shirt.  However, I quickly realized that I had a problem on my hands when I began asking him basic questions about his life. Instead of answering, he would pause and give me a long, languid stares, as though I was Bruce Weber capturing him for the next Abercrombie underwear billboard.

Feeling my own eyes slowly glaze over, I attributed it to hunger and ordered myself a salade de chèvre chaud. My date started at me as though I had just asked for a rotisserie chicken to feast on. The salad arrived. I quickly scarfed it down, trying not too offend him for too long with the presence of delicious fried goat cheese and calorie-ladden pine nuts. He looked at me with pity. I thanked God that the weather was shit and I was wearing a long silk trench.

Still skeptical that a human being could be that dumb, I casually inquired about his life goals and ambitions. He stared at me, phased at all the complex words, and gave me another sexy stare. I reiterated. After straining his nonexistent brain cells for three seemingly endless minutes, he proclaimed that, if he had to choose, he would like to visit 120 countries in his lifetime. The reason? He had once met a guy who had done it, and it “seemed cool”.

The bill came, our joyride of a date amounting to 26 euros. I took out my carte bleu and handed it to the waiter, expecting to receive a five-euro bill to cover Zoolander’s beer. His hands never reached for his wallet. Instead, our green-eyed, 33-year-old boy wonder smiled  at me sweetly simply  said “merci”.

I felt eighteen again, standing in line a Starbucks while my date artfully stretched his long limbs, waiting for me to bring him his Tazo. Unfortunately, I was now almost a decade older, leaving me with little patience to tolerate this sort of nonsense. All the rosé I had consumed that night finally hit me, and I announced that I had to run, as I was running late for a Skype date. (There are only so many excuses you can think of after midnight.) Feeling slightly delirious, I explained that I had family in Russia, and America, and even Antarctica, and the only time my Eskimo uncle could Skype was late at night. I think that if this were a cartoon, Zoolander’s itsy bitsy brain would have popped out of his beautiful head then and there from all this information overload.

He may have processed all my bullshit at some point the next day, because, when I attempted to show his photo to my coworker over lunch, I discovered that he had blocked me on Tinder. Apparently, goat cheese salads and Eskimo uncles was way more than my Zoolander could handle.

As for me, I realized that beautiful boys with vapid minds was way more than what I can handle at the ripe age of twenty seven. And so, thanks to this pitiful story, I have only these words of wisdom for you: never, ever date models.


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