So at 17 and in my junior year of high school, I was this never-been-kissed kind of girl (unless you count a throwaway game of “spin the bottle” in the 8th grade) who chose to focus solely on getting straight A’s, scoring high on the SATs, and filling my schedule with useless extracurricular activities like volunteering to shelve books at the library and being the president of the Spanish club who never spoke Spanish, all done in high hopes of gaining admittance into a prestigious college. I had not a clue what I would do in college, why I needed to go, or what my career aspirations would be but my concentrated efforts of preparing myself to be the perfect candidate for any campus of my liking more than occupied my time.
|Image source: FFFFOUND!|
Sure, my friends were typical teenagers, relentlessly hot for boys and incessant gossipers about the she said and he said kind of topics in our juvenile knowledge of relationships but for me? I never so much thought about boys let alone know what I would do with one if I were ever alone with him, heaven forbid. Expectedly, when I was accidentally asked out on a date by a basketball player in the same grade as me early in my high school career, it seemed only natural for my twin sister, Carly, and best friend, Liz, to tag along even though they were not invited. It took me a while to learn that very rarely do men ever go for the packaged deal when it comes to romantic dating. Unless, I have to add, he is chasing other types of conquests but we won’t get into that…yet.
My entourage and I met up with “date boy” to watch Pearl Harbor at a nearby theater. He gave me a quick hug when he found me at the concession stand and told me he had already gotten me a ticket. Shit, I thought to myself, I guess this means we are really on a date. He also took it upon himself to “set up shop” in the way back of the theater, saving us two seats isolated from the rest of the audience so that I could ask him about the parts of the movie I didn’t understand while not bothering anyone else, or something like that. Unfazed, Carly and Liz paid for their tickets, picked up some popcorn and licorice, and shamelessly plopped themselves a couple of rows in front of us. As the movie started, I sat rigidly like a statue next to Date Boy, my eyes permanently fixed to the humongous screen in front of us, my focus unwavering as if I were wearing blinders.
Date Boy must have noticed my eyes since he expressed unusual concern for my vision, brushing away my bangs for me seemingly every five minutes to make sure I did not miss out on one bit of the Josh Hartnett and Kate Beckingsale scandal. And then he would lean in, whispering something about my hair blocking my “beautiful eyes” and after the nth time I felt his clammy hand beginning to touch my forehead, I turned to him and shrieked, “Please stop it! I just don’t want to kiss you!”
Carly and Liz were never there to watch the movie in the first place, of course, and were completely delighted by the action, or lack thereof, going on behind them. By the time the ending credits rolled, my seat was covered with bits of popcorn and candy they’d thrown at us over the course of the last couple of aggravating hours and to this day, I simply refuse all invitations to watch Pearl Harbor again. Not that people get a hankering to watch Pearl Harbor too often.
The last thing I remember about my first date experience was us, all four of us, awkwardly walking out of the dark theater together and the best parting words I could come up with to Date Boy was “See you later.” Short, not-so-sweet, and disturbingly open-ended, it’s needless to say he never called me again. Not that I was barricading the family phone waiting for him, either.