I had the best Fourth of July in a long time. My sister’s boyfriend has a place at the beach and we went there for a barbecue. There was a professional fireworks show at dusk, but the neighbors up and down the beach lit huge bonfires and set off their own fireworks. It was like being at a tennis match; I didn’t know which way to look.
Actually I knew which way I wanted to look. It was everything I could do to not stare at the brunette beauty by my side. My cousin (whom I’ve been arguing with on Facebook about Trump and North Korea) is dating this chick, and this chick has a daughter. Well, the daughter and her friends unexpectedly showed up at the party. Turns out she’s close with my sister’s boyfriend’s family. Talk about a small world. Maybe it’s fate.
She and her friend and her friend’s boyfriend spread a blanket out on the sand when the fireworks started. I brought down a plastic lawn chair from the deck for myself but she said, “You can sit with us if you want, there’s room right here.” She patted the spot on the blanket next to her. Well, I took that chair and Frisbeed that shit into the sand dunes. I don’t shy away from opportunities anymore.
Her friends cuddled and canoodled in front of us, and I was seized with a strange urge to put my arm around her. It almost felt like we were two couples on a double date. I hadn’t seen her in a long time and she is quite a knockout. But I kept my composure. Stay cool, don’t say or do any dumb shit… I just leaned back on my hands, and as soon as I did another crazy thought entered my head: How much do you wanna bet she touches my hand? I waited in that pose to see if my hunch was correct.
Sure enough, a few minutes later it happened. She shifted her weight on the blanket and put her hand down right on top on mine for a moment. “Oh, sorry,” she said. “That’s okay,” I grinned to myself in the darkness, wondering if that was an accident-on-purpose or what. And now my brain was going into overdrive. Would she or could she be interested in me? We’re potentially step-cousins, or something. I might not just get friend-zoned but family-zoned. There’s also an age difference (which doesn’t bother me).
Still, I chatted with her trying to feel things out, until my sister came along and interrupted and wrecked my flow. Thanks a lot. We rubbed shoulders a couple more times that night. Afterwards we started following each other on social media. I’d like to get another conversation going but she’s rarely online. A bit unusual for someone her age. Damn. This girl is intriguing.
In other news, the pool party is a no-go. First she canceled the event, citing the expense and stress of planning. Then her boyfriend gallantly stepped in to host a party for her instead. That was canceled too. Why? Because she dumped him. Apparently she told him she wanted to get into shape and he said he might not find that attractive. Uh… okay. Sounds strange to me, but whatever. And I know this because she broadcasts all her relationship drama on Facebook.
She goes through this cycle every few weeks: She finds a guy, falls in love, it goes to shit, she rants about how men suck and “can’t handle strong independent women,” and then repeats. I’ve seen quite a few women make that claim. While I’m sure it’s true in some cases, it’s more likely it’s a confrontational or bitchy attitude that sends men running. She does have a tendency to turn everything into a fight, and I know one of her exes told her so.
While I’m on the subject, I ran into a spot of bother with the girl who cuts my hair. I’ve had her as my stylist three times in a row now. I like the familiarity, and it turns out we went to the same high school. I couldn’t find her in my yearbook (would have helped if she remembered what year she graduated – how do you forget that?), so this time I asked what her last name was. When she told me I suddenly realized: “Oh, you’re Deborah’s sister!” I exclaimed.
She put her hands on her hips and gave me a look. “Okay, first of all, I have a name. It’s Mandy, it’s not ‘Deborah’s sister,'” she said. I just stared back at her in the mirror. Didn’t seem like she was trying to be funny. I said nothing, partly because I was trying to figure out if I was somehow being an asshole, and partly because I didn’t want to get a shitty haircut.
My brothers are well-known in certain music circles, and when people find out I’m related they go, “Oh, you’re Johnny/Patrick’s brother!” I just say “yeah” and that’s that. I don’t get all snooty about it. I dunno, maybe she’s another “strong, independent woman” like my friend. I know they’re both single moms. And I don’t mean anything bad by that. It’s just that there are single moms, and then there are SINGLE MOMS.
Which reminds me, I promised a post on the subject of having kids. That’s still coming up next, I just got a little sidetracked.