"Wow is right."
     "That thing you did with the ropes. How'd you know exactly how tight I wanted it? I've never met anyone who made such perfect knots."
     "I've been perfecting my rope technique for years but right now was the first time I felt completely fulfilled by tying someone up."
     "It's hard to find someone who shares my particular tastes."
     "When I saw your profile on Nerve I thought we'd be pretty compatible."
     "But this went way beyond that."
     "So, what next?"
     "I'm starved."
     "Me, too. What do you say we get dressed, hit the Brooklyn streets and find a restaurant?"
* * *
     "I've heard this new steak house is amazing. It's completely locavore."
     "That means the chef only cooks grass fed beef from growers in New York State."
     "I don't eat meat. That place across the street seems better to me."
     "Raw vegan?"
     "They don't even seem to have a bar. I could really use a Manhattan."
     "I don't drink alcohol."
     "I have an idea. Follow me."
*  * *
     "Uh, I don't know about this cafe."
     "What, you don't like German Swiss cuisine? It's the hottest trend among cutting-edge chefs!"
     "Yeah, but this is all vegan knockwurst and raw sauerkraut and non-alcoholic beer."
*  * *
     "I don't know how much longer I can walk around before we settle on a restaurant."
     "Maybe we should call it a night."
     "Well, it was great."
     "And I guess we're still on for tomorrow night."
     "All right, then."
*  * *
     "Mind if I sit at this bar next to you?"
     "Only if you don't mind me eating a big bloody steak right in front of you."
     "Actually that's why I picked this seat. I was drawn to your plate of beef. I am in such a carnivorous mood."
     "At 11 PM?"
     "Yeah, well, my date and I couldn't decide on a restaurant."
     "Too bad. But now you're at the best bistro in Williamsburg."
     "Everything on the menu looks incredible. I don't know what to pick."
     "Want to try a bite of mine?"
     "Oh my God, that's the best thing in the world. And are you drinking a Manhattan?"
     "Have a sip."
*  * *
     "Can it really be 4 AM? These last five hours just sped by."
     "Talking about restaurants we've been to."
     "When you were describing that meal you have in Lugano in 1994. I felt like I was there having foam seaweed with you."
     "And the way you relished every bit of your chocolate pudding. It's great to meet a woman who isn't afraid of a few calories."
    "You know … I don't meet many people I have this much in common with."
     "Yeah. Hey, I know it's short notice but I'd really like to take you to that restaurant I was talking about. It will convince you of the beauty of Nova Scotian cuisine. It's a two hour drive to get to it but completely worth it."
     "Well, I did have something tonight ... but I can get out of it."
     "Then we're on!"
     "I can't wait!"
     "Just one thing you should know. I'm a gay guy."
     "That's totally OK."
     "And you?"
     "I'm just a girl who's into being tied up with elaborate rope knots."
     "And I have linonophobia. I can't be near anything even remotely resembling string."
     "Not a problem. We're compatible in the most important way."


Polly Frost's new book, With One Eye Open, is a collection of 25 of her humor pieces. Her website is


July 28: Percy Bysshe Shelley and Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin eloped on this day in 1814.

Crime fiction legends Dennis Lehane and Michael Connelly discuss the new book that unites their beloved sleuths Patrick Kenzie and Harry Bosch.

Books, CDs, DVDs to know about now
Paradise and Elsewhere

Canadian short story marvel Kathy Page emerges as the Alice Munro of the supernatural from these heartfelt tales of shapeshifting swimmers, mild-mannered cannibals, and personality-shifting viruses transmitted through kisses.


When a persuasive pastor arrives in a sleepy farm town, his sage influence has otherworldly results (talking sheep, a mayor who walks on water). But can he pull off the miracle of finding kindly local Liz Denny the love of her life?  Small wonder looms large in this charmer from Andre Alexis.

The Hundred-Year House

When a poetry scholar goes digging through the decrepit estate of his wife's family to uncover a bygone arts colony's strange mysteries, he awakens a tenacious monster: his mother-in-law. A wickedly funny take on aging aristocracies from author Rebecca Makkai (The Borrower).