Once upon a time, long, long ago in the suburbs, there lived a girl of sixteen. She had glorious Aquanet mall hair and Guess jeans (the kind with the zippers) and despite her small size, she would be mortified if her Generra sweatshirt did not cover her behind. Mortified. She loved her Keds (without the shoelaces) and Depeche Mode and she kept herself busy working at a local teen dance club and trying not to giggle every time a boy talked to her.
She wasted her school days daydreaming and trying not to fail geometry. She passed notes to her friends and snickered with them in a large group that nearly took up the entire hallway of the high school. If there was a class in socializing, she would've received an "A++++", like, fer sure.
One day, in French class (and this one time, at band camp . . .) one of her classmates, a boy of seventeen, a skater and a leather-jacket wearing hoodlum, stood up in front of the entire class and asked her out on a date.
She was puzzled as to why he would even ask her out in the first place. I mean, come on, everyone knew that she had a very busy weekend schedule (working at the dance club) and she'd need at least 2-3 weeks advance notice to even consider doing something else! But she had been eyeing him since she'd had her braces removed a few months ago and he was the first one at school to notice.
"Hey, you got your braces off. Your teeth look nice."
And she was somewhat attracted (do 16-year-olds even really know what this means?) to his "bad boy" image. He was super confident, didn't "conform" like she did and the year before he had multi-colored hair. But there was something else too, something she sensed, something she thought maybe she should explore . . .
So she wrote him a note during her lunch period, with 3 of her friends helping, and handed it to him as he and his entourage sauntered in the building when the bell rang (reminding us to all get our butts to class). She had crafted each word very carefully, so as not to seem too desperate, but to let him know that she was interested in "going out" with him. She left the ball in his court. And, he brushed her off.
Fine, she thought. Boys are stupid, she told herself.
The school year ended and summer began. The skater boy worked at a drive-in that served greasy burgers and milkshakes, the girl hung out with her friends and occasionally visited him at the drive-in, only to flaunt what he was missing in his face (whatever!). Eventually, as the end of summer neared, she grew weary of playing this silly game and she went to visit him one last time. She gave him her phone number - and casually said "give me a call, you know, if you want to". Off she went.
And then, there was the note on her door when she returned from shopping with a friend. It read: Brett called, he'll call back later.
Eighteen years ago today, that boy and that girl went on a date. They saw the movie "The Abyss". She was wearing a black v-neck shirt from The Gap with little white flowers all over it, and her favorite pair of jeans. He had on a white t-shirt and a pair of Levi's with Chuck Taylor's on his feet. They sat in the middle of the dark theater and, just like in the movies, he flung his arm over her shoulders like he'd done it a thousand times before. But that's it. No kiss. No hand holding.
That would come later.
The rest, they say, is history.
Happy Anniversary of our first date honey, 18 years ago . . . man, we're old!