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Dinner with Cupid

Blind date: ‘He told me he lived in a van’

Will one dater’s mobile home be a no go?

Will Martin and Kayla Mercuri.

KAYLA MERCURI: 23 / retail manager

Her hobbies: Singing/songwriting

What makes her a catch? She has a great sense of humor and loves to laugh

WILL MARTIN: 25 / medical billing by day, comedian by night

His perfect mate: A touring rock musician

What makes him a catch? He’s the nicest guy you’ve ever met who lives in a van



Kayla I was tired of Tinder.

Will I couldn’t resist the opportunity to be ranked with a letter grade. I left work and changed into my only good date shirt that isn’t Hawaiian.

Kayla I channeled my inner Meghan Markle. I was five minutes late, just as planned.


Will For journalistic integrity I’ll mention she got there six minutes after start time but I personally would never consider that “late.”


Kayla Not someone I would typically go out with. I wanted to keep an open mind.

Will Very cute! I was glad we matched levels of casual [dress].

Kayla We talked about my love of waffles.

Will She was gifted the same Mickey Mouse waffle iron by two different people. That’s someone who has a passion, and passion is attractive.

Kayla He told me he was a comedian. I wasn’t surprised. He went to school in West Africa, and I wish we chatted more about that. I ordered pizza and chardonnay.

Will I got steak tips and a blueberry margarita. I was like, “Nah, I’ll get a whiskey drink,” and then they were out of the ingredients and I was glad because I really wanted the margarita.

Kayla He told me he lived in a van. It didn’t register until he talked about finding parking in order to sleep at night.

Will There’s no easy way to say on a first date, “I live in a van.” And I live in a van. Not down by the river. OK sometimes down by the river. I should really just start saying “tiny house” because then my vagrancy seems artisanal.


Kayla I definitely understand the struggle of being in the arts, so I went with it. He assured me he does take a shower every day, a relief.

Will Like, she is for sure correct. It’s weird. But I get along with people who can appreciate something even if it’s not for them. She didn’t ask follow-up questions! Who doesn’t have follow-up questions about living in a van. I’ve seen a wide range of reactions and hers was deep in the “very concerned” zone.


Kayla After dessert, he had a comedy show to go to, so there was an air of, “We have to wrap this up.” I was ready for it to be over.

Will My dad said a date told him “I had a nice time” and that’s when he knew they wouldn’t go on a second.


Kayla Nope. When he told me he lived in a van, I knew this was not my man.

Will If you wanna be my lover, you gotta get with my van.


Kayla / B-

Will / B

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