Y’all, I actually worked today. Teaching dance lessons. For money. Praise the Lord.
The work day started with my friend Summer. That’s her in the picture. (If I could get my hair to do that, I would just die.) I know Summer from the Little Theater in Fort Smith and her work with improv comedy. She’s hilarious. Anyway, Summer and her husband eloped a while back, but they’re having a ceremony and reception soon, so she and her Dad came in today to work on their father-daughter dance.
During the lesson I asked Summer how she met her husband, and she said they used to work at the same place, and her friends kept encouraging her to talk to him. This went on for a couple of weeks, and one day she turned around and–honest to god–bumped into the guy. Well, he’d gotten a major haircut recently, so the first thing Summer said was, “I like your hair.”
I like your hair.
Can you believe that line ended up snagging her a huz? I mean, Summer landed a hot dude (I creeped her Facebook page) with, “I like your hair.” It’s like Baby in Dirty Dancing saying, “I carried a watermelon” and ending up in bed with friggin’ Patrick Swayze. Well, first, I love that (the thing and Patrick Swayze). Second, I’ve apparently been doing everything all wrong.
The dance lessons this afternoon were at my friend Bonnie’s house, and she offered to make me a smoothie during a break. They say beggars can’t be choosers, but that didn’t stop me from trying, so I said, “What kind of smoothie? What are you gonna put in it?”
“Coffee, peanuts, hemp seeds, something, something, and dates.”
“Dates? That sounds good. I haven’t had a date in FOREVER.” (It’s funny because it’s true.)
Several weeks ago I saw a hot guy on a friend’s Instagram account, so I creeped him on Facebook. (I swear I don’t spend ALL my time creeping on people. But don’t even front like you don’t do it too.) Anyway, I did something I never do and asked my friend to hook a brother up. To my great surprise and delight, they said they’d give it their best shot. Hashtag winning.
What if tomorrow’s the day?
Well, people have lives and these things are delicate, so it’s been a slow process. But in the meantime I’ve been keeping myself busy fantasizing (not about anything naughty), slipping into little daydreams like having someone to walk with (I’m assuming this guy has legs–the picture was taken from the waist up), or going to the movies together, or wondering if my seven-year-old nephew with long hair would mind standing in as one of the flower girls at the wedding. You know, little daydreams like that.
My therapist says that daydreams like these are completely normal. A long time ago I told her that I’d meet a total stranger and immediately start thinking about marrying him, moving to a big city, maybe even having kids. She said, “I don’t know anyone who DOESN’T do that.”
Anyway, this evening I found out that the guy is seeing someone (who’s not me). What a drag. On the scale of lifetime disappointments, this one ranks pretty low. But on the scale of today’s disappointments, it pretty much takes the cake (cake!) because it’s the only one I’ve had, unless you count the thing about Summer’s hair being better than my hair, which I don’t.
In the past two years, I’ve gotten myself all worked up about a couple different assholes–I mean gentlemen–I met online. In both cases, I actually talked to them–things were going splendidly–that is until it we started planning a date. By we, I mean me, since I’M A PLANNER. (Paula Cole should write a song called “Where have all the planners gone?”) And then–crickets.
When that happened the second time, my therapist did something she almost never does. She gave me a directive. “We’ve reached the point in our relationship at which I can sometimes tell you what to do,” she said, “and I’m telling you to stop talking to guys on Tindr.” So that’s what I did. Never let it be said that I can’t follow directions. But I said, “I never even met these people. We just sent messages to each other. Why am I so disappointed? Why does it hurt?”
“That’s just the death of the fantasy,” she said.
“Well it sucks.”
At Bonnie’s tonight, there were some really strong winds. We were sitting on her front porch, so we put away the outdoor furniture to keep it from blowing away. Before I left, her electricity went kaput. On my way home, I took my usual route, which snakes through town and up a big hill into the back of my parents’ neighborhood. Just before the crest of the hill, I saw that a large tree had fallen across the road, so I had to do a thirteen-point turn, head back down the hill, and choose another route.
Before I did, I used my headlights to take a picture with the big tree. The picture doesn’t really do it justice, but I think I look all right, even if you can’t see the legs I most certainly have. But believe me when I tell you that the tree was so big it took up the entire road. Hell, there were probably little elves that make cookies living in it.
Tonight when I saw the elf tree in the middle of the road, it seemed pretty obvious that I wasn’t meant to go that way, which meant that, in effect, another fantasy had died–my fantasy about traveling down that particular road. (I’m sorry, this road is currently dating someone else.)
So all I can think is that a lot of times our plans and fantasies don’t work out. A LOT OF TIMES they don’t work out. And that can hurt and that can suck. But just because one road doesn’t work out doesn’t mean you can’t turn around, try another one, and still get to where you’re going. Isn’t that what an adventure is? And as for that guy, my friend said they hadn’t given up, so I guess it’s possible that a road that’s blocked today could clear up tomorrow. I’m really okay either way, but what if tomorrow’s the day to bump into someone and say, “I like your hair”?
[In the spirit of this post, I’m sharing one of my favorite songs maybe ever, “Ring Them Bells” by Liza Minnelli. (Will and Grace taught me, “Judy, Liza, Barbara, Bette–These are names I shan’t forget.) It’s about the true story of a woman who traveled around the world and met her future husband, only to find out that he already lived next door to her in New York City. It’s fabulous.]
Quotes from CoCo (Marcus)
"Sickness and health come and go, just like everything else. It's just the way life is."