I have another article due for the VoiceboxX and I can't think of a single story idea. I could recant the recent "Nudie Cake" endeavour - but that would require an overuse of the word "Boobies" and I think that the kindly people at my publication may frown on such casual use of that term. Maybe I could retell the tale of my first date - I think that it's been rehashed enough times, though. I mean, how many times CAN you talk about the time you went on a date, your over-hairsprayed hair got stuck to his face and your leg fell asleep rendering them useless as you teetered and hit the sticky cinema floor, sporting an accidental faux hawk and landing with a soft thud on a pile of forgotten popcorn?
Wait - that just may do....:Dating for the Graceful-impaired
At the ripe old age of thirteen I mustered up my courage and marched into the living room to argue with my parents. I was old enough to go on dates, I told them. I was way more mature than most other girls (lie, bold-faced lie!). They reluctantly agreed. I was going on my first date.
His name was Sam. He was “talented and gifted.,” a label that was coveted in middle school society. He read big books, and understood them. And he liked me. How could I refuse?
We met at the movie theater at the mall on a Friday night. I sauntered up to him wearing the outfit I had painstakingly picked out: A green and purple plaid jacket with matching shorts and Bass penny loafers. I had slicked back my hair into a side ponytail, using a whole can of Aqua Net in the process and knocking out my own personal hole in the ozone.
We bought tickets for “Far and Away.” He paid out of his Velcro Levi’s wallet and we found seats near the front, not knowing that the “cool” seats were located in the very back near the stickier end of the theater. We said nothing. While Tom Cruise was being stabbed in the leg with a pitchfork, Sam slyly put an arm around me. I laid my head on his shoulder and crossed my legs toward him. He put his cheek on my head.
I was in heaven.
I was in hell.
Two hours later, I was still in that same position. My neck throbbed and began punishing me by sending painful spikes of pain down into my shoulder. My left leg was gone for all I knew. It had gone to sleep an hour ago and had not been heard from since. The armrest with the words “CINEMA 6” was being branded into my side and I believed that I had drooled ever so slightly on to his Structure pique shirt. He didn’t move, so I didn’t move.
The credits began to roll and people began standing and stretching and heading down the red-carpeted aisle. Sam released me from my torment and started towards the exit. I stood, took one step and belly-flopped into the aisle. People laughed and stared at the girl lying face down in a puddle of coke in the middle of the movie theater. They were all wondering how a “special” girl like me managed to get a date with a “gifted” guy like Sam. Sam rushed back to me and tried to help me to my feet. He chivalrously brushed the crumbles of ancient popcorn off of my plaid-encrusted body. Sam then looked at me with a twinkle in his eye. I knew he was smitten. Somehow, through my impression of a blind diving horse, he had fallen deeply in love with me.
“Your hair is messed-up.” He said with a chuckle.
“Oh, okay,” was my clever and witty response. I reached up, wincing from the pain still present in my neck. The hair I had shellacked down was now revolting from the hair spray and was standing straight up. I, covered in coke and popcorn, was now sporting a Mohawk worthy of MTV. My bangs must have gotten stuck to his cheek. Mortified, I grabbed his arm and hobbled towards the white doors at the end of the aisle, hoping no one would notice the big wet spot on his shoulder.
Outside, on the curb, we waited for our parents to pick us up in silence. I was busy picking various things off of my outfit and patting my hair just to be sure that it was, indeed, laying flat again. Sam put his arm around me again. I winced, wondering which body part would be sacrificed during this cuddle time.
“You’re funny.” He said, looking into my eyes.
“Thanks.” Once again, the clever banter ensued.
“No problem.” Are my toes tingling? Are they going to sleep? Images of the same theater patrons filing out and seeing me, again, spread-eagle, face-first on the concrete outside of the cinema filled my head.
He kissed me then. I can’t recall the exact feelings I had, and can only remember the spit-swapping and braces banging only lasting a few seconds. The date officially ended when my father pulled up blasting the soundtrack to the “Beverly Hillbillies.” I limped to the car with what was left of my dignity and vowing never to date again.
Sometimes, I wish I’d kept that vow…