Tag Archives: sad

Young Love.

4 Sep

I hated him the moment he walked through the door. He looked older than his very young years. Not old; mature, distinguished, chiseled, even with a slightly round face and Great Pumpkin head. He was clean shaven and deeply tanned. He wore an aqua-green polo shirt and acid-washed jeans. His hair was close cropped and “brown” wasn’t an accurate color description; “bronze” is perhaps the closest. The same applied to his eyes: just when you thought they were nothing special, a simple turn of his head made the rich forest green hidden within the iris sparkle. He smelled like a deodorant or cologne that had the word “breeze” or “wave” in the name. He had a perfectly formed yet honking schnozzola and over-plumped pillow lips sheened with what I assumed was a balm of some sort, but soon discovered was just plain-old saliva from his habitual lip-licking. He was absolutely monstrous. In a few months I’d be head-over-heels in love with him.


I am surrounded by youth. Sometimes I forget how young they are, but I’m reminded every time I fall in love with them. It’s not as disturbing as it sounds: I work at a university. They’re all, with the exception of one 16-year-old genius that I did not love, at least 18-years-old. I know; it’s still pretty bad. But how could I not love them? Everything is so important all the time; every relationship will last forever; sex is terrifying and dangerous and no big deal; secrets abound; gossip is nourishment; fashion and music and ever-changing slang and adventures and unnecessary risks and always tomorrow and the next day and the next. This is what it is to be age 18 – 30 and in college. I’m counting the older end of the student spectrum because something happens to you when you’re surrounded by newness and the promise of something, anything and so much hope. It changes you. It does not always make you better.


“I can’t believe you guys hired him! He’s such a jerk. He talks back to professors, when he’s not interrupting them.” Good, another reason hate him, and from a reliable source, him with his dumb face and dumb hair and dumb voice.

I wouldn’t talk to him, outside of giving him work orders, this cretin who so blatantly disregarded the hierarchy of academia. “Who do you think you are?” I thought, glaring at him over the top of my computer’s monitor. Him with his sweet, minty breath, perfumed by the gum he constantly, loudly chewed, his juicy lips endless smacking away. “I hate you” I’d whisper to myself. “I hate you and your fuzzy-duckling hair and humungo nose that still seems perfectly suited to your face.”

“I hate you,” I thought. “You are dumb and awful and I hate you.”


“We should go to lunch! We’re both off that day. Come to my place for lunch.” Her place is a retirement community in a moderately wealthy town. She is my work friend, a Chinese woman that never wears a bra and brings me tuna sandwiches and oranges that are always too ripe for my taste.

She’s older than 50, but younger than 70. I think. She’s married to an older white man, hence the retirement facility, even though she works two jobs. Three, if you count the slaving away she does for him. She tells me all the time how young I am, that there’s plenty of time, but to be careful. Be very careful about men. They will ruin your life if you choose wrong. She chose wrong. She left a man in China that adored her but didn’t want to move to America. Years later, after his broken heart mended, he married. He adores his wife. Everyone talks about what a good husband, what a good man he is. My friend’s husband is not a good man, but he is stunningly handsome and robust, despite terminal illness.

She says that I deserve someone nice, a good man. I do not tell her that I think I am in love with a horrible boy in his twenties and am in complete denial and don’t want to meet any other men and have, therefore, already chosen wrong.


“Have you ever seen Key and Peele’s East/West College Bowl? It’s a skit about- here, let me just play it for you.” I finally started to talk to him. I can’t remember why.

I somehow learn that he plays football. He plays a position that I pretend to have heard of. I am immediately embarrassed by my attempt, that seems to come out of nowhere, to connect with him. He makes me uncomfortable, mostly because he’s not as ugly as I thought, once I really took a good look at him.

His very presence reminds me that I am old and yet, under-experienced.  The students always think I am 10-15 years younger than I am actually am. I hate correcting them, but lying feels desperate and foolish. His beauty – because, I have to admit, he was, in a way, beautiful – reminds me that I’m fat, and that maybe it was a bad idea to stop straightening my hair, and that though my face looks young, it is only marginally attractive, and only sometimes.

I show him the Key and Peele skit, my hand trembling over the mouse as I click on the screen. He’s too close to me. As the clip plays, he starts to giggle. Not laugh. He giggles. The way a baby does when you tickle its belly or make those loud kissing noises on their neck and fat cheeks. My friend once told me not to make those kissing noises on her baby because the sound of them was too loud and would damage his hearing. We aren’t friends anymore.

I was shocked that this lip-licking, gum-smacking, football-playing, so-ugly-he’s-actually-handsome cool kid was giggling with abandon. It was gross and horrible and probably what made me fall in love with him.

To Be Continued. . .

 

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Signs of Progress.

13 Aug

After 26 million years and An Incidentâ„¢, Bob the Therapist has threatened to discontinue watching me ugly-cry a couple of times a month if I don’t start to show signs of progress.

What kind of progress does Bob the Therapist want to see, you ask? [Sidenote: why didn’t I introduce Bob the Therapist as a character back when I started this blog? Why didn’t I focus solely on dating/romantic escapades and failures as my essay topics/themes? I mean, the name of this blog is I CAN SEE WHY SHE’S SINGLE, not LOOK AT ME WRITE A THINK PIECE ABOUT DEATH AND DESPAIR BECAUSE I SAW A BUG FLY INTO A LIGHT. Should I go back and delete all posts unrelated to said topics? Why haven’t I updated in two years? I HAVE SO MANY QUESTIONS.]

You’re thinking that he probably wants me to present to him an updated resume as a first step towards fleeing the hellscape that is my current job. Or maybe a meal and exercise plan that’ll put me on the path to wellness. How about before and after pictures documenting that I’ve finally moved what remains of my grandparents’ belongings out of the house and even cleaned it up? Nope. Bob the Therapist has asked for tangible proof of my attempts to date and copulate. I hope I’ve partially misunderstood him as I’m not sure what kind of tangible evidence of that second one he’s expecting. Gross.

Bob the Therapist says that my chronic, severe depression (oh boy, here we go) and crippling loneliness (yikes) has not been very good for me and in order for me to not feel so devastatingly awful all the time I need to create healthy, reciprocal relationships with people who are not terrible. What a groundbreaking concept. I can’t believe that kind of insight only costs me a $15.00 copay. How is he only Bob the Therapist and not Robert the Psychiatrist?

That was mean. I’m sorry.

Bob the Therapist says that the average person of my age has married, maybe more than once, and has had children, perhaps even childrens. Bob the Therapist says that I belong in a relationship, that I’d do really well as part of a pair, that I’d thrive, even. Bob the Therapist says that I need to make friends, real friends, and express to them my need to meet someone, that they’d even be happy to take on the insurmountable feat of setting me up.

I was at a bar with this guy, and I asked this guy if any of his many male friends would be interested in meeting me. He said “I don’t know” while chuckling awkwardly and looked into his beer, so I chuckled awkwardly and changed the subject. I was out to dinner with this girl, and I asked this girl if any of her many male co-workers would be interested in meeting me. She awkwardly stammered an “I’ll see what I can do” type statement and looked into her cocktail glass, so I awkwardly stammered something that might have been “Okay, thank you” and looked into mine.

Bob the Therapist says that these conversations, however brief and awkward, were very good and to keep trying. I reminded him that I didn’t really know anyone else and that I also did not want to do it anymore. Bob the Therapist yelled at and wrote something mean about me in his notebook.

I explained to Bob the Therapist that I’d have to, yet again, give online dating a try. I don’t know anyone in real life; no non-homeless man has approached me in years; and the men I’ve approached FREAKED OUT and were never to be seen again. He said something about eHarmony, as everyone always does. I reminded him of my fear of marrying, or at least settling for, the first guy I go on multiple successful dates with. I reminded him that people that use eHarmony are Serious About Meeting Someone. I reminded him that I’d like to just casually date a variety of people, even be a little slutty. It is very hard to be casual and a little slutty using eHarmony.

Bob the Therapist is a luddite, so I told him about Bumble, Tinder, and OkCupid. I told him that since I’d actually gone places and done things this summer, I had full-body pictures that I felt pretty good about. Bob the Therapist said that that was all well and good, but if I wanted to continue to tell him mean secrets while he scowled at me over his reading glasses in his sour-smelling office, I’d need real proof. I’d need to plan a date with some weird stranger that really loves to hike (THEY ALL LOVE TO FUCKING HIKE). I’d have to swipe through pictures of him at a wedding (how great would it be if it were his own?!); the always disappointing to see shirtless pose, and him cuddling a cute dog.

Maybe I should just offer my walking/sitting services in my profile. We all know that’s what I really want: regular access to a dog.

I’m really angry and resentful about having to use the App Store to find someone willing to date me. I don’t know anyone else that has. No one, including Bob the Therapist, can or will tell me why I can’t and don’t meet anyone in real life. Bob the Therapist says that I’m blind to the affection of others. Bob the Therapist says that I could date whoever I want. Bob the Therapist says that he’s confident that people have been in romantic love with me, even though no one has ever told me so, and that I must be too shallow or cruel or narcissistic or stupid to have noticed. Bob the Therapist says that it’s all my fault.

I’m supposed to see Bob the Therapist on Friday. I, surprisingly, have three inboxes full of messages from middle-aged white men I could never imagine kissing. I could write back to them all and show him my progress. Bob the Therapist says I’m supposed to use people, whether I want to kiss them or not, as practice because I don’t know how to date. Bob the Therapist says I’m supposed to cut to the chase and ask Bill or Todd or Jim out for coffee. Bob the Therapist says to stop screwing around. Bob the Therapist says time is running out.

I could cancel my appointment with Bob the Therapist. That might be the biggest sign of progress of them all.