The year was 1996. The movie 'The Ghost and The Darkness' starring Val Kilmer and Michael Douglas was in theaters. It was to be the cap to a lovely date night for my girlfriend and me. It ended up turning into the worst date ever.

Before heading to a late showing of the movie, we had a lovely dinner at an Italian restaurant in Cedar Rapids. I'll never forget what I ordered. Seafood lasagna. I don't remember being worried when I ate it, but I should've been. We finished up dinner and headed to the theater.

For those of you not familiar with the plot of the movie, Val Kilmer and Michael Douglas hunt down man killing lions in South Africa. It's a suspenseful thriller with some pretty intense moments. My date and I went to a late showing which would normally mean a lower turnout. In this case, we were the only two in the theater. About halfway through the film, I felt ill. Not just a little sick, but as if something really bad was about to happen. I excused myself to head to the bathroom. I stayed there the rest of the movie. The lovely seafood lasagna I had wasn't exactly fresh and I paid the price for it. Meanwhile, my date sat it the theater ALONE. Watching lions tear apart people ALONE. She did get up to check on me once but I urged her to return and she did.

What was supposed to be a nice romantic night out with dinner and a movie turned into possibly my worst date ever. But sometimes things aren't as bad as they seem. My date that night must not have minded sitting in a theater all by herself too much. She married me.