Wednesday, August 19

the boyfriends who never were...

At the risk of making myself sound SUPER OLD, I just celebrated my 19th anniversary. How is this possible, you ask, when I am still so fresh and dewy? A) I drink lots of water, B) I use moisturizer with sunscreen, and C) I got married at 19 to a man I met when I was 16. So you can probably guess there was not a looonnnngg dating life, to say the least. Nonetheless, I did manage to work in some romantic dramas and one actual going-steady (for one month) boyfriend before I met The One. Most of all there were the Boys Who Might Have Been, but for various reasons, weren't. Here were a few of the landmarks:

Let's Call Him Pete: Sixth grade. Someone said, "Pete wants to go with you." "Oh." Then Pete and a few friends cornered me near some lockers and said, "You're going with Pete." And I said, "I don't want to." And then they walked away. Ah, sixth grade!

Let's Call Him The Senior: When I was a freshman in high school, I had a killing crush on The Senior. He was totally tall, and sweet, and didn't seem to have a girlfriend. We were in the school play. A bunch of junior and senior girls knew I had a crush on The Senior and thought it was cute and tried to manipulate something into happening despite my protests. One day at rehearsal I was helping him do his Spanish homework, and he said, "Would you like to come to my grandmother's house for dinner?" Me: "YES!" Him: "Oh, no, that's the sentence I have to say in Spanish." In the end, he did ask me to the winter dance, a situation that I'm sure was helped along by the junior girls. The day of the dance...HE WAS NOT AT SCHOOL! As you well know, if you expect to go to the dance, you darn well better show up to school. My mother called me at school. So I'm in the school office, receiving a call from my mother telling me that The Senior's mother called her, and TS has mono. Mono! Of course I'm thinking, "Riiiight. He totally made that up to get out of going to the dance with me." And I cried all day. But then he didn't come to school for like a month, and I guess that would be a lot to go through to avoid me. We had a make-up date going to the ballet with my sister chaperoning, but apparently no sparks were flying for him. Well, maybe between him and my sister.

Let's Call Him JJ: He was a sophomore, I was a junior. We hit it off and hung out ALL THE TIME. Basically we were best friends that year and played hooky a couple of times in my 78 Datsun, driving off to Ocean Beach to smoke* and listen to music. Between the school plays and community theater and hanging out, we had a lot of adventures. I met my future husband around this time, too, and JJ got a girlfriend and we drifted apart. Later I found out that JJ liked me In That Way at least for part of our friendship. We did have a joking deal that if neither of us were married by the time we were 30, we'd marry each other, but I hadn't realized there was more there. (Also, why did we think 30 was so old?) My friendship with JJ remains one of the highlights of my non-adult life. [Edited to add something I just remembered: he was the first male and non-family member to tell me I was beautiful. That moment has always stuck with me.]

Let's Call Him Echo: Makeout session at a cast party. The end.

So I guess all of these guys could have been my boyfriends, but life always stepped in. It's a good thing, too, because I couldn't have handled the breakups. How about you and the almosts? Regrets or relief?



Lexie said...

lol I've had a few close calls myself!

6th grade--I had spent the better part of the year passing notes and sharing a textbook with a guy friend. We'd sit in English and make fun of the teacher in binary or we made up 'People To Hate' lists whenever we'd get irritated. At a school trip (I think to the Statue of Liberty) we sat and had lunch together. My other friends were making fun of us and I got so embarrassed by what he thought I got up and bolted. We didn't talk so much after that. Found out in 7th (when he was being home schooled for a couple of years) that he thought I was so repulsed by the idea that I had to split.

9th grade: My friend from above? Well his older brother became a really good friend of mine too (he was two years older). We had Creative Writing together and we had a lot of the same interests in movies and stuff (plus he was the best friend of my long time crush...). He asked me for my number, which I gave him, but when he went to call me my mom picked up and told him to buzz off. I never knew any of this so when he gave me the brush off I was hurt and stopped talking to him. near the end of 10th we started talking again and he told me what had happened. He apparently still harbored a crush on me even then (wrote me a poem and everything), but didn't think it fair since he was going to college to start anything.

Freshman Year of College: At my very first job as a waitress there was a cute guy who worked the same shift as me--Rob. Oh I had so much trouble talking to him--he was really smooth and charming. He'd sit with me at dinner at the counter, or he'd help me carry out orders (actually he never let me carry my own trays out, he always did it for me). So one night, a few weeks before I quit, he sat next to me and said in all seriousness 'I should take you out so we can make out'. I was so surprised the first thing I did was laugh. When I recovered I patted his arm and told him that he shouldnt' get a girl's hopes up. Apparently he was serious...

and now of course i'm on year five and half with my first and only boyfriend Kyle, so I guess it all worked out right?

Alissa Grosso said...

I had a crush on The Senior too. Well, probably not the same one. Years later I worked with him, and realized he was an OK guy, but not at all deserving of the vast amount of obsessing I did as a high school freshman.

Sara Z. said...

Lexie, yes, five and a half years ain't too shabby! Must be something there. :)

Alissa, I have tried to Googlestalk my senior but he has a pretty common name. Boo.

Sarah Louise said...

I remember a dance in 7th grade. My crush was present and my girlfriends got him to ask me to dance. I was so embarrassed that I think I refused him.

And then there were the relationships where I tried to make a silk purse out of sow's ear.

At 37, I'm still single and working really hard at exorcising the ghost of my first and catastrophic relationship. But it feels good to actually see patterns, and I guess I will have a lot of fodder once I start writing for YAs.


Mari said...

That was great. Thanks for sharing. I have blocked out "the boyfriends who never were" from my memory. :)

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Wendy Toliver said...

Hahaha! Great little stories, Sara! I've had the pleasure of meeting (though only briefly) your hubby and it's a good thing the almost-boyfriends didn't work out b/c you two are GREAT together.

Alyson Noel said...

I had that same exact "Pete" experience in 7th grade, only his name wasn't Pete. But everything else matches!

Melissa Walker said...

Ooh, I love this boy timeline, Sara. I had the "if not married by 30" thing too... and I wasn't! But I was engaged, so I guess that put things off.