“This time of year sucks. Every girl in the hall has her face buried in some guy trying to what I can only assume is clean off his uvula. Why doesn’t every one just get to class. School is for learning, not uvula face sucking.”
That was the internal monologue that usually went through my head every day as I walked to class. Being that is was almost Valentine’s Day just made things worse. The hormones of those around me were so thick you should smell them and the fact that the annual Valentine’s Day dance, which was ladies choice, was that weekend didn’t help.
I had assumed that at least one of the three guys that I hung around with would have said yes when I asked them to go with me but they didn’t. They said I was too much of a ‘friend’. Well, screw being the ‘friend’. What I really wanted to be one of those girls getting their faces sucked off in the hall.
But for whatever reason, none of the boys in my school saw me like that. I was not girlfriend material. I was the friend they all came to for advice on what ‘to do’ with said girlfriends. And because I hated that, I usually gave them bad advice.
I put up such a strong exterior. To the world, I didn’t care that I didn’t have a boyfriend. I didn’t need one but every night when my prayers told a different story, “Dear God, please please please get me a boyfriend. Please. I’m 17 and never been kissed. That’s a movie title, God and that’s just sad.”
Well, I was tired of waiting. And it seemed like God wasn’t answering so I decided to take matters into my own hands.
There was this guy. He was cute, shorter than me, but cute. He saved me from the mosh pit, covered me in his coat when I was cold and rubbed my feet. He had the bluest eyes I had ever seen but he wasn’t calling me.
Well, if you want something done right, you have to do it yourself.
“Jen! I got it. I got it,” my friend Wendi squealed as I walked into her kitchen. “I got his number.”
She handed me a scrap piece of paper with seven numbers written on it. I looked up at her.
“Now what?!” I said in a daze, all my confidence pulling an Elvis and leaving the building.
“You call him, silly” she said.
“What?! C-c-call him? M-m-me?” I stumbled, “I can’t.”
“Yes you can,” she said. “You like him. You want to go out with him. You’ve been obsessing about him for two weeks, call him.”
“What am I going to say?” I asked, “No. No. No. This is a bad idea. I can’t.”
“Too late,” my friend said with a smirk and it was then I realized that in my stooper, she had taken the piece of paper from me and was shoving the phone in my direction, “It’s ringing.”
I looked at her with eyes wide as saucers. Ringing?! The phone was ringing. Holy crap!
My friend smiled at me and then as if reading my mind, she said, “Say hello and ask for Jeff.”
The phone rang for what seemed like an eternity, each ring seemed longer than the last. What was I doing? This was crazy. Did I really like this guy? What if he didn’t want to talk to me? And worse of all, what if he didn’t remember me?
Suddenly, someone saying ”Hello” cut through my panicked thoughts.
“H-h-hello,” I stumbled, rolling my eyes at myself. “Is Jeff there?”
“You can do this. You can do this,” I repeated, giving myself a silent pep-talk, “You are a strong, independent, modern woman. You can do this.”
“This is,” Jeff said on the phone.
I breathed a sigh of relief when I heard his voice and for the next two hours, I didn’t think. I just talked to this boy, this man, like I had been talking to him for years. I don’t remember what we talked about but just that we never lacked for words and I laughed.
Finally, there was a pause in the conversation and I remembered the reason I called in the first place.
“Listen, I know that tomorrow is Valentine’s Day and you probably have plans but if you don’t do you want to go see a movie with me?” I asked, my heart began to race, feeling like it was going to beat out of my chest.
There was a long pause on the phone and I thought that I was going to die.
“Well, I would… I would like to go out with you,” he paused and I knew there was a ‘but’ coming. I just knew we was going to say that he had a girlfriend or he just wanted to be my friend. I prepared my heart for the worse while trying to still be cool, “but I kinda have mop the kitchen for my mom first,” Jeff said.
“What?” I asked, shocked, trying to process what was going on.
“Yeah, I told my mom I would mop the floor for her tomorrow.” Jeff answered.
“Will that take all nigh?” I ask, bluntly still confused. Did he say, yes?! Oh my! Oh my! What was happening here?
“No. I can still go see a movie. It’ll just have to be a little later,” he said.
I smiled. I smiled so hard I looked like a clown with perma-grin.
“Awesome, how about we go see Scream at 8:30?” I asked
“Yeah, that sounds great. Maybe we can get something quick to eat first. I can mop fast.” Jeff replied.
“I can’t wait,” I said, “See you then.”
And with that I hung up the phone and removed it from my ear, feeling for the first time the throbbing in my ear from being on the phone so long. I walked into the main room of my friend’s house to find her watching TV. The smile on my face said it all and she ran up to hug me.
“Looks like you have a date for Valentine’s Day.” she said.
“Yeah, I have a date… ” I said breathless, “Oh. My. God. I have a date!”
And 16 years later, he is still my date.