Monday, June 29, 2009

The More Things Stay The Same

When I was a kid and I liked a girl, there was a process. It was an official process and you followed it to a T. There were no variations. You didn't dare mess with it for fear that you would set other unworldy things into motion.

This is how the process went. You asked your friend to call the person you liked. The friend would make some small talk like "how are things?" or "can you believe what so and so did?" or "don't you just hate that teacher?" Then the friend would get onto the bizzness. And that bizzness was "hey, you know Pat Piper, right? Well, he doesn't know that I'm calling you, but I was wondering if you liked him."

In truth, this is a stupid process. A horrible process. In truth, I'm standing right beside the friend listening in. This phone call has been rehearsed over and over again. And in truth, my friend is not spending every waking moment wondering if certain girls like me. But everyone knows this. It's a gigantic ruse set up because I didn't have the balls or the ego or whatever to ask the person myself. And oh boy is it fun seeing that person the next day after she has rejected you to your friend. Man, that's fun.

So anyway, it's good to see that this process is still alive and well today. My son received a phone call the other day from a girl. This is how the conversation went from my son's end.


Uh huh.

Uh huh.


Hanging up now.

And then he hung up. The girl had called to ask my son if he liked another girl from his school. I can only assume that he confirmed that he knew her and then he said he didn't like her. And then he ended the phone conversation with the warmth of Darth Vader. He later told my wife that the girl wanted to know if he would "go out" with another girl. "Where would we go?" he asked my wife. "How would we go on a date? I'm 11."

My son is brilliant beyond his years. And this side of him is all due to my wife. I can only imagine how I would have reacted when I was his age. "Go out? Absolutely." I would get off the phone and somebody would ask me "where you going?" Or "what do you do when you go out?" And I would say "I have no idea." I never stepped back and observed the stupidity of the question "do you want to go out?" Or "will you go with me." I just played the game. My wife, on the other hand, questions everything. Why do we do what we do? We are the perfect balance for one another. I tell her that sometimes she just has to go with the flow and other times she tells me that I need to think about stuff more. And my son is the perfect balance of us. I'm so glad he got this side of my wife, because it will serve him well.

Either that, or he'll never ever get a girlfriend.

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