Monday, June 6, 2011

A Belated Start

*A word of warning: I cannot tell a short story, and am prone to copious tangents and parenthetical asides. Hopefully, you can continue to wade through my neuroses and slightly flamboyant diction J  

I was a bit of a late bloomer in high school. A six-inch growth spurt, combined with the addition of braces, swapping glasses for contacts, a sudden and impressive increase in cup size, and a general lack of coordination made me extremely awkward physically. Inexperience teamed with the naive belief that high school would be like the teeny-bopper movies of the early millennium (She's All That and Princess Diaries come to mind as far as the “geeky girl transforms into a hot princess--sometimes even literally--and inevitably gets the guy despite great odds and majorly mean girls” genre goes) made for a socially lethal combination.

I wasn't allowed to date until I was sixteen, and I preciously believed that on July 7th, 2003, I would wake up to gobs of suitors outside my door, who were just waiting for the day when my parental units would permit them to take me to Braum's for a double dip of Cappuccino Chocolate Chunk. Imagine my surprise when all my birthday brought was an admittedly killer birthday video and a collection of penguin pictures. Don't get me wrong, it was a great birthday. But I wanted my Jake Ryan.    

Fast forward to my senior year. Somehow, my inept AIM flirting (learned from countless afternoons spent in the "green room" backstage in our Performing Arts Cafeteria) had fooled some poor schmuck into thinking I knew what I was doing, and he asked me out. Our plan? Dinner and a movie (I know, I know, craaaazzy kids). I'm fairly certain we were going to go see Phantom of the Opera (I'm also pretty sure it was going to be my third time to see it in theaters).

Sidebar: This brave soul who took me on my first date was a younger guy who I had a huge crush on. He played the piano like you would not believe. In fact, I date my now instant fascination with pianists of the opposite sex to this point.

So my gentleman caller--let's call him Vincente--calls the night before to firm up plans for our date. My best friend, Brit, was there to witness my half of the following conversation:

Me: Hey! I'm really excited about tomorrow night!
V: Yeah, me too. Listen though, I have kind of an...awkward question for you.
Me (in my head): The last time a guy prefaced a query in this way, he followed up with "What size bra do you wear?" This is going to be good.
Me (out loud): Um, okay.
V: How do you feel about facial hair?
Me (in my head): !!
Me (speaking to Brit via eye contact/telepathy): What the HELL?!
Me (out loud): I mean, I'm not going to ask you to shave...

Sidebar: This date was going down over Christmas break, when we were not in school and therefore not subject to our school’s strict dress code that forbade facial hair on the young men. And side burns that exceeded one inch. Hence Vincente's chin scruff and subsequent concern. I also did not put two and two together as to why he was concerned until after the fact...

The actual date is a blur in my memory. I do recall not eating much of my dinner (nerves) and feeling bad that he was paying for food that was going to waste, leaving the movie during "The Point of No Return" to call Brit and inform her that the PoNR had indeed been reached and I had decided that I was no longer interested in Vincente through no fault of his own, and finally, veritably fleeing the car when he dropped me off, lest he try to burn me with his beard.

I then wrote a very empowering entry in my journal about how I wasn’t going to let myself be defined by a guy, and besides, I didn’t have time for a boyfriend anyway…which proves my theory that it’s easier to be alone when you believe that it’s by your choice and not your lack of options or deep-seated fear of commitment.

I later apologized to Vincente for being an insane person. He denied that it was a date in the first place.

1 comment:

  1. LOVE it already! I must admit, I now HOPE for you to run into randos just for the future stories they will become!