I remember this one day towards the end of my freshman year of high school. I was hanging out with these two sophomore girls, Nicole and Keri. We were lying on the floor of the hallway in front of the drama room, just staring at the ceiling and talking. I don't know why we were there, or what we were talking about, really. Maybe we were ditching class. Or maybe we were waiting to be called in for rehearsal. Or maybe we weren't supposed to be anywhere, we were just lying on the linoleum floor, after school, looking at the ceiling, and talking, like you do when you're in high school.
So we were talking, and then Nicole, the sophomore, who in my eyes was beyond cool--she had purple hair, and thick eyeliner, and I couldn't even believe we were friends--she turned her head just slightly and looked at me and said: "You don't seem like a freshman at all," and then she looked back up at the ceiling. And then I remember thinking, I've made it. I've really made it. Life was good.
Speaking of high school, back to the story I started last night: my date with Dustin.
When I saw him on MySpace (I know, I know, I keep saying I hate MySpace, so why am I on it so much? I just can’t help it. It’s like internet cocaine, or something), I wasn’t even sure if he’d remember who I was, I mean we barely knew each other in high school, he was a senior when I was a freshman, but I figured, what the heck, and asked him if he would be my MySpace “friend.” And then, a few hours later, I got an email from him with the subject line: “hey, erik—a blast from the past.” Okay, so he remembers me. We email back and forth a couple of times, and then we talk on the phone, and then I suggest we get together. And then we make plans, and we hang up, and I have no idea if this is a date we’ve planned or if this is two-old-friends-who-barely-know-each-other-getting-together-to-catch-up. I think it’s a date—it has to be a date, right?—but I’m not sure. We’re meeting at his place—if this was a date, wouldn’t we be meeting at a restaurant? So it’s not a date. If I was going on a regular blind date from the internet, we’d be meeting at a restaurant. But we used to know each other, kind of—well, barely—so there’s no need to be formal. So maybe this is a date. I have no idea. I’m freaking out.
As I’m driving over to his place, my mom calls. We talk for a few minutes, then she asks me: “What are you doing tonight?”
“Going out with some friends,” I tell her. Then we hang up and I’m mad at myself for lying to her, but I spent so many years not telling her about things like dates that when it comes to dating it’s like second nature to just omit that information. But I feel bad. My mom wants me to be “more gay” with her.
So I call her back: “Actually I’m going on a date.” She’s thrilled to know the truth, and doesn’t understand why I lied to her in the first place, and wishes me a fantastic date, and she’s so happy I’ve called her and told her about my date, that I think she might be crying.
So then we hang up, and now I feel bad again, because…what if this isn’t a date? So I call her back again and tell her: “It might not be a date.” I really have no idea what I’m driving to.
So I get to his house, and he invites me in, and we start talking on the couch. Getting reacquainted, catching up on old times, etc. Now, I haven’t had dinner yet—I’m starving—and I’m beginning to get the feeling that he has had dinner and we’re just gonna sit here on the couch and talk all night. Okay, so, this isn’t a date. If this was a date, we’d be having dinner right now. And then, he’s like: “Have you eaten? I’m starving.” So then I’m like, oh my god, it is a date.
He drives. (Thank god, I’m thinking to myself, it’s a date and my car is a mess.) As we drive to the restaurant, the conversation flows really easily, and we’re still catching up on old times, and talking about our mutual love of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and things like that, and I’m starting to realize, this doesn’t feel like two guys who are into each other talking, this really feels like two friends talking. Maybe this isn’t a date. You know what, it totally is not. Definitely is not. Nope, not a date. No, sirree.
But then, at the restaurant, he offers to pay for the meal. So, wait: it is a date. (I think.) If it wasn’t a date, we would have gone dutch. He paid = in his mind, it’s a date, definitive answer.
But then we go back to his place, and he invites me back inside, and I’m thinking: If this was a date, this is the moment when we might kiss. But I’m sitting on the couch and he’s over by the stereo, playing me some music. And we’re not kissing. So, what’s up?
Wait, okay: this isn’t a date. Or is it? I am so fucking confused.
So I get up off the couch and sit next to him by the stereo. And we talk for a few more minutes. And then, finally, he looks at me and he says:
“I guess we’ll never know if we don’t try.”
So I lean in and kiss him. (It is a date!) And the kiss was like…
You know that moment in Back to the Future, when Larraine kisses Marty (who's her son, but she doesn't know he's her son, because she hasn't had him yet) (but, really, if you didn't already know that, and you needed me to explain who Larraine and Marty were, then you should stop reading my blog right now and go rent Back to the Future) (seriously) (go to Blockbuster) (now)
(anyway) (so), then Larraine breaks away from the kiss and she looks at Marty and she says: "I don't know what it is, but when I kiss you...it's like kissing my brother."
That’s what our kiss was like. It wasn’t bad, there was just, like, zero chemistry. So we stopped kissing and we looked at each other and started laughing.
“That really didn’t work, did it?”
“I’ve been wondering all night when that was going to happen.”
“I know, me too.”
“But I wasn’t ever sure if this was a date.”
And then, once we got that out of the way, and both of us realized that we never wanted to kiss each other ever again, and that, yes, this was a date, but no, it shouldn’t be, then we both kind of relaxed and agreed to be friends. And I’ve been on failed first dates before that ended with one of us saying, “why don’t we try to be friends,” but this was the first time I really meant it.
So that was my date with Dustin, and why it was so bad, but also why it was so good.