Sit on your couch, let me read to you
The post about being uncertain how to react to guys who are speak-singing you lyrics from a song that has some deep-seeded meaning to them got me thinking about other awkward scenarios I’ve been in related to someone sharing something emotional and the other party, me, usually due to being caught off guard, being flummoxed in reaction.
A guy I met a few years ago at a House of Blues concert put me in such a situation. We began dating after the concert (great story of how this happened below). After a couple of weeks, he was over at my place one night and sat me down on the couch in a very serious manner.
“I have something I want to read you.”
He proceeded, in his best Bill Kurtis/Morgan Freeman voice, to read me passages from All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten , a book that “reminds us that the most basic aspects of life bear its most important opportunities.” He kept taking deep breaths, long pauses, glances up at me with penetrating and probing eyes. Now would be a good time to say I loath self-help stuff like this.
I think people spend too much money, time, and brainpower on books, therapy, journals, medication and other similar things that supposedly help you reflect on/deal with your life – it’s too much thinking about what’s wrong, what you wish you could change, the obstacles you’ve faced. Instead of spending money on a therapist to discuss loneliness, spend that time and money on classes, activities, travel, actually meeting others!
Anyway, back to Kindergarten Boy. He recited a passage about how great the world would be if instead of real bombs, we dropped peace bombs. After about twenty-minutes of him dramatically punctuating and sighing, and me hoping the “Are you serious you douchebag?” feeling vibrating in my bones wasn’t apparent on my face, he slowly closed the book and looked at me.
“Um, wow. Thanks.”
“I want you to have this.” He handed the book to me.
“I brought this for you. I give copies of it to people I care about.”
He went on to tell me that when his mother died of cancer? when he was in high school, this book got him through the pain. Of course then I felt like a horrible person. But a horrible person who still hated that stuff.
I broke up with him after three months. About 2.5 months too long. But I love great How You Met stories and really liked ours so was hoping we’d be able to recount it at the wedding.
The night we met, it somehow came up that I love reading the Missed Connections section in the Reader, where you post about seeing someone out and about but didn’t get their contact info so hope that they see your ad and respond and you fall happily in love. A couple of weeks after the concert where I met Kindergarten Boy, I stumbled upon this:
Oh wow, I was at that concert. Cool, I have a leopard print coat too! I can be funny and some say I’m exotic. This is so funny, she sounds exactly like… Oh wait! That’s me. I almost fell off my chair. Then I called the phone number and well, the rest is peace bomb history.