A boy was recently in town, whom we will call The Firefighter From Seattle*, and he always makes me laugh.  More importantly, he makes me smile.  He has since high school.  The weeks preceding this visit, the best friend and I had discussed how he was a potential opportunity.  Because I need more opportunities in my life.

I choked.

I mean, gross, not what you’re thinking, not like literally— just that I choked on the task at hand.  Ew.  Not what you’re thinking there either.  Ok, let’s start this over.

Knowing that we had premeditated and planned A Plan and that he was a prospect, if only I could work some game, made me completely avoid him.  Completely.  I felt entirely too awkward and conspicuous.  Instead of my jeans and respectable three-quarter-sleeve-length tee, I felt like I was the hoochie parading around in leather.  Scratch that, I was born in 1983, there’s no way I ever experienced leather-clad hoochies.  More appropriate to my generation and just as uncomfortable in my opinion, would be … Butt-cleavage jeans with exposed thong and a too-short tank-top revealing the beer-induced muffin-top.  Hot.  A good look for me –and everyone, I would imagine. 

Either way, I felt awkward and avoidance is always my fall-back approach.  The defense mechanism that ensures nothing will happen. So much for stories and living life.

We did, however, share a couch the next morning.  Pretty scandalous, I know.  All I was able to do.  Ironic that last year, I was comfortable spending many a summer nights falling asleep exactly as such with him, watching a movie (sans quotations: “watching a movie” from the teenage years that rarely required a movie) after drinking and playing various bar games.  He would point out constellations.  Once he gave me a flower. 

But then, last year, I was safe.  I knew nothing would happen because I was in love with someone else and The Firefighter was respectful.  Harmless flirting.  Old friends just hanging out.  Or at least that was my justification, even though a hook-up would have been legit as that was The Kid From Boston’s “keeping me on the back burner” phase.  But I felt committed … and again, when in doubt, avoid.

The Firefighter used to debate how one doesn’t win when bets are hedged, but I refused to listen.  Apparently, he knows more about gambling than I do.   Maybe next time I will have the courage to take a roll of the dice.  Or at least not avoid the table.

*The codes are not necessarily used to hide their true identity –as, really, they are more detailed than the generic name –but to keep you, my nonexistent audience, confused from, say hypothetically, the twelve Marks or nine Mikes in my life. 


Having been committed to the same guy for the past five years –with the majority of those years being my supposedly wild college days—I missed out on making many stupid mistakes.  As my one huge five-year mistake prevented dozens of small one-night ones, I think it’s time to make up for lost time.  Enter: my whore phase.  

Step One: Rid self of Catholic Guilt.  Note: This could take awhile.  

Step Two:  Compile List of Quotas

  1. Stupid Mistake

  2. Starving Artist  (See: Leonardo Di Caprio in Titanic)

  3. Non-English Speaking.  Also: must not be greasy.

  4. Blue-Collar.  Which seems very judgmental to write.  But as I tend to fall for the skinny, slightly-dorky types, I need someone on my Quota List who has muscles.  Someone who is capable of Vin Disel moves.  Someone with calluses on their hands.    

  5. The One Who Got Away.  Not necessarily The One, just One of the Ones.  Because I love a comeback.

Five should do it for now, but expect additions, as I think I will enjoy using this list as a justification of my behavior.  He was premeditated!  He was on the list!  I need stories to tell my grandchildren.  Scratch that.  I do not need children.  I just need stories; I need life.  My Great Aunt (and, as she used to say, I do mean Great) had no children, but she had stories.  She dated and subsequently slapped one of the Three Stooges because he was getting too “fresh”.  Nat King Cole autographed album covers with endearing descriptions about her eyes.  She conquered Europe; she danced incredibly well.

Even if my whore phase is comprised of making out in cabs or midnight skinny-dipping trysts, I can’t wait for the stories.  (And yes, I realize that last sentence totally gave an insight into my middle-school mentality).