My mother helped me find an appropriate dress and I teased my hair up to make myself look "taller" and I waited nervously for my date to arrive. I had no idea what to expect on a date. I was shy and unsure of what to do when my date came to pick me up.
Joel came to pick me up and my mother made us pose for the obligatory "first date" picture. We tried to escape my parent's scrutinizing behavior but failed.
My father had a dry wit and it was impossible to tell how he would behave. When my date and I started to leave, my daddy called out to my mother to "get my coat" because he was "ready to go". As he said that he reached up to the shotgun hanging in the gun rack in the den. He took the gun off of the wall rack.
Before anybody could say anything, or react, Joel turned around, ran out of the den, through the living room and on out the front door. He was moving so fast you could almost see his hand on the door facing in the den while his feet went out the front door.
I was stunned. Daddy stood there, chagrined, and told me to go tell Joel he was just kidding with him. Joel had run to the house next door, where his brother was parked waiting for Joel and me to double date with him and his girlfriend. They had been visiting my cousin, Mike, who lived in the house next door while Joel came to pick me up for our date.
I went to tell Joel that Daddy was just trying to be funny and he wasn't really planning to go on our date with us. Joel tried to act like he wasn't really afraid but we rode to the banquet in total silence and barely talked the rest of the evening. We danced some and he tried to be polite but the date was ruined and Joel and I never had another date again. Too bad, Joel was a nice guy. Well, he was a nice guy after he met Daddy.