Wednesday, December 21, 2011

And if we Randos have offended, spell-check this and all is mended

As an English major, I cannot tell you the number of times I have been asked for grammatical advice. I’ve accepted that there are very few people in this world that actually speak proper English, and as I am occasionally one of them, it is my lot in life to educate the masses when they ask for help—and sometimes even when they don’t ask. It is my cross to bear and most times I don’t mind dispensing with a usage rule or two, provider that the askee reciprocates in some form or fashion (I take air miles, rare books and expired drink tickets).
Sidebar: I promise I am, in fact, going somewhere with this.

Last year, I made a series of trips up to Fort Worth to visit my friend, Amy. Before A&M’s crushing loss to Arkansas in the Southwest Classic, we had no choice but to preemptively drown our sorrows in an all-night pub crawl in downtown Fort Worth.

At some point, we picked up a couple of gentlemanly gents—Brawn and Mitch. Brawn was an old pal of Amy’s, but Mitch was new to us.

At this point in the evening, I was already a couple of G&Ts in—a fact which, coupled with Mitch’s passing resemblance to a Rich I knew, led me to constantly call him the wrong name. I finally gave up and referred to him as Rich-Mitch for the rest of our acquaintance, both behind his back and to his face.

I don’t recall much from that night, as a later harrowing experience obscured much of my memory of it…

Sidebar: Let me just tell you, coming back home at the end of the night to find that your friend’s car has been towed, which subsequently entails a three hour excursion to some God-forsaken corner of DWF during which you must haggle with scrappy tow-yard employees, resulting in you not putting head to pillow until close to five AM when you have to wake up at eight is both an experience and slightly harrowing, if only because of the consequential sleep-deprivation.

I do recall that as we were leaving the bar, I recited Puck’s closing monologue from A Midsummer Night’s Dream for Rich-Mitch and the rest of the revelers on 3rd street. It seemed appropriate at the time.

Sidebar: What can I say, I get exponentially more geeky when I drink spirits. I present Exhibit A.

Anyway, Rich-Mitch was a cutie, and the next morning I tried in vain to lure him away from his law books and convince him to come to the Aggie game, or at least to the pre-game tailgate, since clearly that’s more important than the game itself—particularly if A&M’s playing.

Sidebar: Face it, you need some sort of numbing agent before watching the Ags play. Maybe in the future we should set up tents offering free nitrous oxide hits to fans…

Rich-Mitch it seemed was immune to my charms, and chose to spend the day cuddling with his torts textbook instead of getting his heart broken by Jerrod Johnson.

However, we would meet again a few weeks later when I journeyed back north for Halloween weekend.

I was super excited to debut my Halloween costume that year, which I felt was both creative and cute without veering into “I moonlight as a hooker on the weekends” territory.

That first night, we crashed a friend’s med school party where we toasted another mutual ex with wrathful shots of tequila…we really need to stop dating the same guys. I believe one of us may have resorted to improvising an outdoor lavratory due to plumbing issues inside. We also texted Rich-Mitch, who seemed to remember my performance of the Bard’s work fondly, and made arrangements to meet up the next night.

Since my wedding dress had endured several party fouls the night before (sadly, it never fully recovered from its beer-baths, even after a trip to the dry cleaner’s), I pulled out my back-up costume, the ever-popular authentic (aka non-slutty) Catholic school girl.

Sidebar: Catholic school, K-12, baby! And the skirt still fits.

Unfortunately, my contacts also didn’t escape the previous night’s festivities unscathed (seriously, those med students know how to let lose after midterms are over), so I was rocking my glasses along with my plaid box-pleats. Keep in mind, these are what I wear to get myself from the bathroom to my bed without breaking something, and only make public appearences when absolutely necessary, such as when I’m out of contacts or have contracted pink eye.

We met up with Brawn and Rich-Mitch at a dive bar where we pretended that I have a modicum of hand-eye coordination and played a few rounds of darts and pool. Rich-Mitch kept a steady stream of Blue Moons in my hand, and flirted with me by the jukebox. I was secretly thrilled that someone still found me vaguely attractive in my specs (though maybe it wasn’t so much them on their own as opposed to their combination with knee socks that did it for him).

Eventually, we ended up at the Library, where in a magical, booze-soaked moment on the dancefloor, Rich-Mitch and I transitioned from slowly revolving on one spot to some 80s rock ballad to kissing. The kissing was surprisingly good, considering my glasses kept slipping down my nose. I was in bliss.

After last call, Brawn, Rich-Mitch, Amy and I giggled our way back to Rich-Mitch’s apartment, where he impressed me with facinating tales from law school, and showed me his fridge of Red Bull. There was a little more canoodling on the couch (strictly PG, I promise), and a sweet goodnight kiss. All in all, a satisfying weekend.

I had no delusions that this little daliance would blossom into a full-fledged relationship—we lived in different cities after all, but I was a little miffed when the only contact I had from Rich-Mitch the next week was the follwing text message:

Disclaimer: This occurred P.i.P.: Pre-iPhone, ergo I’m reconstructing this convo from memory, so I make no guaruntees to its factual accuracy, only sentimental truthiness.

Rich-Mitch: Hey, you were an English major, right?

Me: Yes…

Rich-Mitch: I’m working on this paper for my contracts class, and I was wondering if you could help me with some wording.

Me (sigh): Sure.

Rich-Mitch: (insert banal usage/spelling question here)

Me: (insert appropriate answer)

Rich-Mitch: Thanks babe :)

And I never heard from him again.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Bryan Ryan Returns!

And so does How to Lose a least for the time being. We'll see how many entries I can eke out over winter break.

What you are about to read is an actual textersation between me and Bryan Ryan. Yes, that Bryan Ryan. He’s about 10% serious here (I’m ball-parking), but is nothing if not earnest in his mostly-in-jest attempts to get me to date him. He’s going to wear down the nicest girl someday! I kid. Bryan Ryan, you know I love you in the sincerest, most-platonic way possible :)

Bryan Ryan: Just one time, E! You’re going to give me a chance and it’s going to be EPIC!

Me: Only in your dreams, mon frère.

Me: And if there are dreams, I don’t want to know about them… :P

Bryan Ryan: Chinese food. Greek. You’re basically saying we were meant to be together

Me: Yes, you’re right. Everyone knows that pan-Asian cuisine and cancelled ABC Family shows are in fact a euphemism for hooking up. How silly of me.

Bryan Ryan: Not silly. Calculated. Well played.

Me: I want you. I need you. Oh baby oh baby.

Bryan Ryan: Now you’re just playing hard to get

Me: And quoting Julia Stiles. I’m multi-talented like that

Bryan Ryan: She was FANTASTIC in 10 things I hate about you

Me: Indeed

Me (trying to change the subject): How go the law school apps?

Bryan Ryan: Still waiting on a recommendation to be submitted but I’m basically done otherwise.

Sidebar: Did you breathe a sigh of relief? Too soon, I’m afraid. When Bryan gets on a roll, he must see the pick-up lines through to the end.

Bryan Ryan: I can be a provider. See?

Sidebar: Aaaaand he’s back!

Me: Yes, but not for at least like 6 years...

Bryan Ryan (not dissuaded): 4.5 and you really have to think long term on that one

Me: then you’ll have all your law school debt to deal with

Bryan Ryan: I don’t plan to have all that much debt…(Bryan proceeds to lay out his five-year financial plan for me)…not all that bad

Me (wryly): Well, that’s good.

Bryan Ryan: Yeah, so just start thinking about it. There could be a Mary statue in your future ;)

Sidebar: Let me explain. No, there is too much. Let me sum up: there is a running joke amongst my group of friends that all most a goodly amount of marriage proposals that come out of St. M relationships involve an adoration hour, rose petals, and a statue of Mary. I maintain that there is a pamphlet that our pastor hands out to guys when they ask for his brother's information. He’s a local jeweler. The brother, not the priest. There’s some kind of nepotism in there somewhere.

Me: No, my future husband will have much more creativity than that. 27-year-old PhD’s have mad proposal-planning skills. That’s why their six-packs are so taut—they’re full of ideas.

Sidebar: There’s another running joke/prediction that I will one day date a 27-year-old, "almost gay" PhD with a six pack. I don't get it either. Just go with it.

Bryan Ryan: Well 27-year-old JD’s with a sense of humor tease you at 24 about a Mary statue to set the stage

Me: You are not 27. Are you building a time machine too?

Bryan Ryan: No? I said that 27-year-old JD’s (which I WILL be) tease you at 24 (which I am)

Me: Ahh

Bryan Ryan: That’s at least one date for false accusations. I’m sure we can reach a settlement that will be amenable to all parties…

Sidebar: Bryan likes to practice his last-will-and-testament diction for inevitable future use in his closing arguments.

Me: One where you lose my number?

Bryan Ryan: Lose your number? What do you think I do on dates?

Me: Ah, see you have fallen to one of the classic blunders—the most famous of which is never get into a land war with Asia—but only slightly less well-known is this:  “Never hit on a girl who has watched you clip your toenails who isn’t already married to you.”

Sidebar: Boom! Lawyered.

Bryan Ryan: Ahh, touché. Well, I guess that’s the only reason this won’t work.

Me: Sure.

Bryan Ryan: You shut me down so hard. It’s incredible

Me: It’s what I do :) Bow to greatness, Bryan Ryan. Bow to stone-cold greatness.

I like to think that these little dialogues are an exercise in verbal sparring that will hone Bryan's argumentation skills so that he can one day kill it in the courtroom. Bryan Ryan, you're welcome.