a required taste for the pretentious as all get out





see? date me and you pop in my head at bizarre moments
August 13, 2003, 2:16 pm

So, Chris.

I met Chris when fiestada suggested we meet an old high school friend at a bar in Arundel Mills. Although I thought that fiestada suggesting to go any place as mass-marketed as Arundel Mills was suspect, I volunteered to tag along. We met up with high school buddy Joe, his then girlfriend (now wife) Julie, and a bunch of her friends. While everyone was playing skeeball and drinking overpriced cocktails, I noticed Chris.

He was easily 6'3" and had the most piercing blue eyes I'd ever seen. He was HUGE (in a good way); still a golden hue although it was December, like his body retained the summer sun for slow release through the winter. His hair was adorably curly and styled and gelled so it looked like the adult version of Justin Timberlake's curls.

We were walking out of the bar and someone suggested going to Julie's house for an impromptu party afterward.

I don't remember how Chris and I started talking, but I do know he ducked out on the porch for a smoke, and I followed. We started talking about movies and his eyes, god, his eyes sucked me in. I was throwing the vibe with every toss of my hair and girlish giggle.

Inside, Julie's pet chinchilla caught Chris' attention, and he told me all about the chinchilla that he used to have. Petting its soft fur, I remembered how the chinchilla was my favorite animal when I was in kindergarten due to a visit from the Baltimore Zoo to our classroom. Chris was holding the chinchilla in his arms and I was stroking it, letting my fingertips occasionally brush against his hands.

He told me later that he knew then he had to ask me out.

We ran to the porch again, and this time when I called him "Sweetpea" he said, "Uh oh. Sweetpea. I'm going to have to get your number now."

That was December 30th.

I went to Ryan the Funeral Director's eastern shore pad for New Year's Eve, determined to have a good time with my Shore Boyz. I called Chris' cell two minutes after midnight, just wishing him a happy new year.

Later on, I checked my messages. He had called at 12:01am from his buddy's apartment of his own volition.

We went out January 3rd and were pretty much inseparable after that.

His mother was in love with me. She was bubbly, fun, and worshipped the ground her only child walked on. She saw grandkids and was delighted I was so smart. She would give me wine, chai tea, breakfast every, she was fantastic.

So was Chris. At times, he could be immature. He was so quiet when he came to my house (I think it was because he couldn't get a word in edgewise), and my dad was convinced he was "the one."

I wasn't yet, but I think he did.

We went to the Greene Turtle to watch the Ravens win the AFC Championship and he couldn't stop pawing me. That look in his eyes said "I'm going to propose TONIGHT" and I was a bit weirded out because quite frankly, I didn't think I loved him yet.

I remember leaving a message on Amy's voicemail that said, "There's nothing better than the Ravens winning the SuperBowl except getting LAID after the Ravens winning the SuperBowl!"

I started student teaching the next day.

I would take stacks and stacks of papers to his house, and he'd help me grade the easy stuff: quizzes, drill checks, reading comprehensions, etc. When I was grading essays, he'd put on Sportscenter and order pizza and rub my neck. He was, on paper, the perfect boyfriend: owned his own house, had a good job, responsible, handsome, SO FANTASTIC-OH-MY-GOD in bed, loved his mom more than anything, etc.

Something was wrong.

It was sometime after Valentine's Day, and he showed up to my house to pick me up. He couldn't speak. We got as far as Marley and he burst into tears.

I remember thinking, "Um, okay, someone has cancer. Someone is dead. His ex-girlfriend is pregnant. WHAT?!?!"

He parked the car in the rain and turned to me, eyes brimming with tears.

"Jess," he whispered, "I have to break up with you."


I didn't say anything except "Take me to Annie's, NOW."

He couldn't give me a reason. He just couldn't. I couldn't believe it. I couldn't get upset. Things were fine, things were fine, things were fine.

"I have to get my stuff from your house," I snapped.

"It's in the trunk," he said.


That night, his mother, his roommate, and his stepfather all called my cell phone independently. They were as pissed and as bewildered as I was. They thought it was because he thought I was too good for him. He wasn't ready, blah blah blah.

Two weeks later he was back with his much younger ex-girlfriend whom his mother hates.

I haven't spoken to him since New Year's Eve 2002. He's with someone else now. The ex-girlfriend he left me for cheated on him...oh well. I think about him every once in a while, mostly because my God, the man was dynamite in bed, and because he was ANOTHER May birthday boyfriend (the 13th Dave, can you believe it?)...

the reason I was thinking of him today? Because I was watching Sex and the City and the girls were talking about guys who shaved their joysticks. Draw your own conclusions.

"Yes, I do think about you, every now and then..." --Garth Brooks

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