9781451625912Hello, XOXO-ers! In honor of Valentine’s Day, we sat down with Linda Yellin, author of THE LAST BLIND DATE. This memoir is Linda’s real life love story:

She is a Midwesterner hurt by marriage. He is a newly separated Manhattan dad. What did they have in common?  A guest bed in the home of a mutual friend…until she lets herself get charmed by him. Over the telephone. The old fashioned way.

In a sparkling, witty and moving memoir, Linda Yellin tells the story of falling in love long distance and staying in love up close.

We sat down and talked with Linda Yellin about the actual Last Blind Date for her, and also a few that were next-to-last and not-so-good. If you have any fun blind date stories, share in the comments!

I’m a romantic. In my head, I met the man of my dreams over and over again and it was always sexy and dramatic. My prototype was Rhett Butler carrying Scarlett O’Hara up that big red staircase. Not quite like what really happened when I did meet Mr.-Thank-God-You-Showed-Up. I lived in Chicago. He lived in New York. We were fixed up over the telephone by friends who lived in California. When Randy walked off the plane at O’Hare airport, he had a big smile on his face…and an unzipped fly.

But I was so ready to be in love. And so ready to stop dating. Like the name of my memoir, Randy’s my last blind date. But my second-to-last and third-to-last blind dates made me wonder: What do my friends think I’m like??

My friend Karen never knew how to break up with guys—she didn’t like to hurt their feelings—so she’d fix them up with her friends. Mainly me. Her sucker girlfriend. Things were going swell with the guy who cooked dinner. I don’t cook. I order in. So a man who knows his way around a kitchen gets brownie points. Until dessert when he said, “I have terrific hands. Would you like me to crack your neck?” I was looking for a boyfriend, not a chiropractor.

Of course, I wasn’t every man’s dream girl. I have one of those obnoxious metabolisms where I get away with murder. My cousin Dolores fixed me up with a businessman friend she knows. Older guy. Widow. In high demand on the dating circuit. He took me to an Italian restaurant that served family size portions. He ordered a thin slice of veal. I ordered spaghetti. This huge bowl shows up and I proceeded to polish off the contents as I watched Mr. Available Widow sit there looking appalled. He’d told me he attended a lot of charity dinners and I’m sure he was thinking how mortified he’d be to bring me to some good cause and have me plowing through the buffet table. But the spaghetti was much more appealing to me than he was.

Randy’s never carried me up a big staircase Rhett Butler style. If he tried, he’d probably throw out his back. I doubt he’d even sit and watch Gone With the Wind with me. But Saturday night I was signing books at a singles mixers party. A man came up to me and said: “My last blind date was named Mona. Now I want a moaner.”

Ewwwww.

Then I turned to my right and introduced the man to my wonderful husband.