Saturday, November 01, 2008

Not The Halloween Where I Saw A Lesbian Cowgirl Scale The Wall To Get To The Ladies' Room

But that was a good story, too. You can read part one here and part two here.

Halloween, 1995

When I think of autumn and fallish, Halloweeny memories, for some reason this time in my life comes to mind first. (Note: marching band competitions come to mind second. Sad? Yes. True? Also yes.) In 1995 was a junior in college. I was living at home and commuting to a local branch of UCONN. I had a few acquaintances there, but not many and no one I was especially close to. It was a lonely time in my life in many ways, actually. But I was very happy nonetheless, because I felt really engaged in life.

I've written about this before, but after a miserable first year of college -- and by miserable I do mean miserable -- something clicked. I decided I was too young and smart to be so unhappy and to feel so out of control of my life. So I stopped feeling sorry for myself (Note: I think a lot of my motivation came when I somehow transferred my sadness into anger. It worked, but was unsustainable. I do not recommend.). And I turned things around.

A year later, I was barely 20 years old. I was in great shape and was working out regularly. I was managing a full-time class load in the honors program. And I had a part-time internship at a marketing agency. AND I had a part-time job at the cafe at the local Barnes and Noble.

AndAndAnd I was always looking for my next boyfriend. (Note: story of my life.)

At this time, I was mostly looking for love online. Not because that's where all the hot guys were -- trust me; 1995 had not exactly lured the stud muffins to the internet -- but because I wasn't finding them in real life. Again, I didn't really have any friends to hang out with. I wasn't old enough to go to bars or clubs, and even if I had been, I wasn't going to go alone. And because I wasn't living in a college town by any means, the guys I met were either much older (meaning married with kids) or in high school. The guys my age were away at college, or in their first jobs out of college and living in, say, New York City.

Meeting Kevin was, therefore, a lovely surprise.

I was scheduled to work an afternoon shift at the B&N Cafe on Halloween, so I decided to show up fully decked out in costume. I wore a very adorable (if every-so-slightly small) Minnie Mouse getup, including yellow mouse shoes, mouse ears and nose, false eyelashes, tights, and even the faux bloomers. My very dorky manager was a little concerned that perhaps I was TOO costume-y, but the district manager was in that day, and gave me his full approval.

Toward the end of my shift, a half-cute, half-handsome man came into the cafe. He looked to be somewhere in his twenties, and was very much "my type." He was tall and broad-shouldered, with dark hair and dark eyes. I remember him in a nice coat, like a fancy trench sort of thing, even though it's entirely possible my memory is messing with me. He was clearly a professional of some sort. And he was very smiley. We may have flirted while I made his coffee drink, but I think when you're in a Minnie Mouse costume, it's a little hard to tell who's smiling with you and who's smiling at you. (Note: ALSO story of my life.)

When my shift was over and I was headed out, I ran into this man again. He stopped me, I think, and asked something adorable about where I might be going, dressed as I was. We chatted a bit. And then the up-to-that-moment-in-my-life-unheard-of thing happened. He asked for my phone number. A young, professional, handsome man asked me for my number. WHILE I WAS DRESSED AS MINNIE MOUSE. Ah, memories. His name was Jeff.

Now, perhaps you're remembering lo those 4 paragraphs ago where I said something about "Kevin." Turns out, I'm getting to that.

I was rather tickled that Jeff had requested my number, and while I didn't expect him to call right away, I thought he definitely would call. And then a few days passed, and a few more. And then a week. And then it had been two FULL weeks before the phone finally rang and I answered it and a friendly man's voice I didn't recognize was on the other end.

"Is this...Kristy?"

"Yes." (?)

"Hi. This is Kevin."

"Hi!" I said, trying to sound like I had some idea who it was. Because I didn't at all.

"Uhm, you don't actually know me."

That would explain it.

"But you uh -- this is going to sound strange. I think you met my friend, Jeff, at Barnes and Noble a couple weeks ago."

"Oh, uh, yeah."

And then I'm pretty sure Kevin started laughing, because the entire conversation was about to be hilarious. He basically told me that Jeff thought I was adorable and had a great personality, but forgot to mention that he already had a girlfriend. But Jeff thought that Kevin and I would hit it off, and so he gave my number to Kevin and insisted that he call me. Which he didn't really want to do, because how random is that? But then, what did he have to lose, because the worst I could do would be to hang up on him, and so far I hadn't.

I thought the story was pretty funny, and flattering. Because Jeff must have been persuasive.

I agreed to meet Kevin for coffee at the same B&N Cafe later that evening. And we did, totally, hit it off. Kevin was every bit as adorable as Jeff (if not more so), and sweet and funny. We dated for a few months, and had a great time.

We're still in touch.

I'm not sure what the point of this entry is, other than to say that it's kind of funny. You never know what's going to stick out in your mind (and heart). Why is that particular autumn and that particular boyfriend my automatic go-to when I think about Halloweens past? Of course, I have lots of other wonderful Halloween memories, bt that one strikes first. Maybe it was more pivotal than I even now realize?

Who knows.

What do you remember first?

8 comments:

  1. My sister was three years older than me and we weren't all that close growing up. We are much closer now but as kids three years was a puberty gap and personality differences that left us with absolutely nothing in common.

    Every Halloween those differences were set aside as we trooped out together to go trick or treating with a couple of her friends. This was twenty years ago in a small town and no one thought twice of a group of 10-13 year olds trick or treating without an adult chaperone.

    She chose to bring me along and it was the coolest, happiest times with her I can remember. I felt important and awesome, and even soaped up a couple of car windows.

    I still think of that every Halloween and I just realized I never told her that. I think I'll email her right now.

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  2. I remember the Halloween my dad's extra sciency smart friend built me a Jawa costume, complete with glowing lights for eyes. Jawa's were the junk collectors in the first Star Wars movie, and nearly sold C3PO and R2D2 for parts, if memory serves. I couldn't see shit that night, what with my brown hooded robe and two Christmas lights for eyes, but I felt like the coolest kid of 1977.

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  3. The first thing that pops into my head is the memory of how the air smelled. And then crunching through the leaves in Central Park (Burnaby BC, not NYC). As for halloween memories, I remember the townhouse complex I lived in had hot chocolate and fireworks every halloween, and one year, after we were done begging for candy, we were standing around with our paper cups of hot chocolate, and the fireworks were just about to start, and it started to snow. It was magical.

    If I go back to my earliest memory, I remember being young, and we lived in the city, so we would drive out to my great grandmother's neighbourhood to trick or treat. We knew everybody on the block so I was allowed to eat the apples and popcorn balls my grandma's friends would hand out.

    Hmmm... now I'm all warm and fuzy.

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  4. Dressing my seven year old daughter in a costume and looking across at my new husband of one month and crying because she finally, finally had a father to take her trick or treating.

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  5. Yrsh..I like it...but, um the proposal, the wedding? Pulease? Or at least let us know which bits are off limit. I'm so excited that its happening!
    Kathryn

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  6. i remember this one night in brooklyn, maybe 1999, going to the movies with my boyfriend paul. we were in the middle of months of long hard pre-breakup stuff, but then that one night we walked to the movie theater and my skirt was blowing around in the wind and the heels of my sandals that it was almost too late to wear were crunching the leaves, and we held hands and it smelled like fall and everything was just like it was supposed to be. i even knew it right then.

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  7. It's amazing to me that we never know what will stick out in our minds. Brilliant mysteries.

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