Gym class with David B. was the most awkward thing ever.
First of all, even in the dead of winter, the gym was always about 100 degrees. It’s hard to look sexy when you’re forever wiping sweat away from your forehead, while your carefully-placed body glitter melts in the heat.
Another problem was my wardrobe. At least 70 percent of my clothing was black, leading to all-black gym ensembles that were the opposite of comfortable. Because I was desperate to maintain my over-accessorized punk chic aesthetic, I refused to take off my jewelery, leading to numerous occasions where I almost killed another runner as my paperclip necklace flew off my neck. I know, more than once, I almost stabbed people in the eye with errant jewelry.
It didn’t help that the most popular athletic pants in the late 90s were of the saggy, bulky, swishy variety. I will never forget the sound of 30 pairs of black Adidas swooshy pants circling an indoor track. I don’t know how kids in the 90s ever sneaked up on anyone. You could hear people coming a mile away. Between swooshy pants and windbreakers, we were pretty much fucked in terms of secrecy. I remember trying to make sure my pants had the appropriate amount of sag, and that I observed the proper shoes-to-pants ratio. (Which, for girls, was about 1/4 shoe to 3/4 pants. Only the top of your shoes should be visible beneath your bellbottoms/track pants. For boys, the further down your ass your pants could be, the better.)
I remember a lot of sweaty, awkward, hormonally-charged moments in gym. One in particular will always stand out in my mind. We were playing volleyball, the only sport I didn’t completely suck at. I had decent aim and hand-eye coordination, and it didn’t require any running (always the bane of my existence). I was on a team with Cherry and Lisa, and we were scrimmaging against some of the unpopular girls.
I was poised to send back a serve from one of the Stefanies, when I noticed David B. walking on the other side of the court. Pretty much any time he entered my general radius, I became awe-struck. It’s like I had this sixth sense about where he was in relation to me, and I was always trying to remember my most basic functions should be cross my path. That day, I remember him strutting past us, stopping to high-five one of his friends. He stopped, ran one hand through his brown bowl cut, turned, and shot me one of his famous half-smiles.
I completely missed the serve. The over-inflated school-issued volleyball landed square on my hand, right on the last joint of my right thumb.
I couldn’t properly move that thumb for weeks.
It was awesome.
Today i was talking to Kit online. I told her about David and she said that I should ask him out. Also, she said that she noticed the chemistry between us. And that she noticed how strongly we reacted to each other from the first day of class! I’m glad that someone else noticed this. S and S are completely oblivious to the whole thing. I’m just really confused about everything, I’m so lost, I don’t know what to do!
Sometimes I feel like I want to kiss him, and other times I want to hit him. It is so——————————————> weird. With RF, it was never like this. Actually, it kinda was, but more like a “good friends” thing than a flirting thing. How can I, Diane Lorraine, like David? C’mon he’s some boring old (home town) boy! He’s certainly no Treize Khushrenada, or any smart, cool, and confident world leader. Instead of a Lady Une x Treize, it’s more like Han Solo x Princess Leia, with occasional Gene x Melfina moments. It’s a strange kind of “every reaction has an equal and opposite reaction” deal. Mostly we disagree, and flirt like that. But then we have these sweet lapses when no one else is around, in which we have quiet talks.
When we interact, it’s like we pay attention to nothing else but each other. Austin, Elliot, Dustin and Neal are my buddies, but we never react that way.
OK, I’ll be honest, some of this was hard to type. Especially the parts where I compare my romance with David B. to other fictional couples. Good Lord. (I believe Gene and Melfina are from the anime Outlaw Star in case anyone was wondering/cared, which I am sure you weren’t/don’t.)
Everything I learned about sexual tension, I learned from Han and Leia. I’m not sure if this makes me really awesome, or really lame, but there it is. At 14, I truly believed that they, along with my fiction OTP (“one true pairing” for those of you who didn’t spend their teen years reading fanfiction on the internet) Rhett and Scarlett, were the perfect couple.
I also like where I’m too lazy to write out all the o’s in “so” so I just draw a line indicating the level to which I am frustrated.
As I’ve said before, I think it’s funny that all a dude has to do to garner my interest is be a douchebag. It’s funny, because this continues to be true today. Though it’s interesting to note that the first guy I ever dated did not banter with me until much later in the relationship.
That particular banter didn’t even happen until a strange, end-of-summer week where we hadn’t been able to spend any time alone. He had friends visiting, and I had emptied my bedroom (including the bed) in anticipation of moving. We ended up airing our sexual tension at the local all-night diner in the form of a loud, long, ridiculous argument in front of all our friends. The argument was resolved with us running outside and kissing.
It was awesome.
At last, we’ve reached the somewhat-chronological section of the diary. Here’s where shit gets good.
By the start of the new semester, I’ve realized my True Love for David B. I’m pretty sure I actually started liking him as early as September or October, but I put off admitting that to myself until now. It’s interesting to note that little has changed in that department. I still follow the same pattern for all my crushes: hate, annoyance, interest, lust, and finally like. This process usually takes months to complete, which is why once I like someone, I’m pretty much in it for the duration. After all, I had to spend weeks figuring out if I’d hit it.
I am sooooo confused! I’m starting to feel the way about David that I felt about Ryan. I really don’t want to have to go through this all over again.
He talks to me all the time, and shows off while I am around. I don’t know what to do! S and S don’t know yet, and I probably won’t tell them. It seems so obvious to me, but I guess they don’t seem to notice.
I don’t want to go through this again, it’s just too painful. But I don’t know what else to do about it. I don’t ever want to have a relationship, or do I? I wouldn’t know what to say or do, though. Stupid Stefanie and Joe are going out (I think). Why do I always fall for these dumb guys?
David B. and I had quite the flirtation. I’m pretty sure it consisted entirely of us insulting each other. I’ve always been a big (ok, more like, 14-year-old girl at a Jonas Brothers concert obsessed) fan of what TV Tropes calls “slap slap kiss” relationships. I am pretty sure this is entirely the fault of spending a large portion of my adolescence watching and re-watching the famous kissing scene between Han Solo and Princess Leia in “The Empire Strikes Back.” There’s really no defending this, except to add that I still think it’s awesome to this day. What can I say? Even nine-year-old me was attracted to bad boys.
David B. was everything you can aspire to love if you are 13 years old and really, really into badassery in all shapes and forms. He was smart, but didn’t apply himself. He hung around with the bad crowd, but not often enough to be labeled a serious druggie. He was snarky and sarcastic, and most importantly, he took great joy in making fun of me.
The first friend to find out about my secret crush was Kit aka Bunny. She was the only person observant enough to figure out the real reason we fought … all the time. (She’s a frequent reader/commenter who is GETTING MARRIED this Saturday! If my dad had done as he was told and brought my big box of writing, I’d be posting the list we made with “100 reasons y guys suck!” Once I go home to Michigan, I am posting it for sure. CONGRATS!)
S and S refers to frenemy Stefanie and another girl, also named Stephanie. I believe I caved and told them about my tortured love affair, probably days if not hours after this entry. I have a big problem keeping secrets, as in, I pretty much overshare all the time. Plus, I needed as much attention as possible. And when you’re an eighth grade girl, having a crush is an instant attention-booster.
David B. and I had three classes together, which meant I saw him four out of five days a week. Tuesdays were the worst day ever, as he did not grace me with his presence at all. He was also in my rotating elective (Art/Gym/Spanish), which will become important later. Art class with David B. was pretty much the highlight of my life.
We did most of our flirting in US History, because he sat at the next table over. Kit, far more confident than I, would always start up conversations for my benefit, as she and David B. were neighbors. I would wait for my moment, and then sputter out some insult about his bowlcut hairdo or misspelled homework. He would counteract with a crack about my glasses or my habit of asking insufferable questions and sharing unnecessary personal anecdotes during class. We had some ongoing joke about him being a hunter that resulted in David B. drawing me a picture of a rabbit. He wrote “To Diane, from David” on it. I kept it forever, like some sacred object, hidden under old book reports in my desk at home.
I was crushing hard. The school work was easy. “Wait til you get to high school,” every teacher told me when I complained. Consequently, I spent most of my year reading under the desk and thinking of new outfits, new insults and new fantastic ways to wear my hair. I had a plan to win David B’s love. All I needed was the perfect moment of execution. Unfortunately, there were no hyperdrives to malfunction, stranding us in space for months at a time, forcing us together in confined engine rooms. But hey, a girl can dream.