Do you remember what underwear you were wearing when you first started to realize that everyone else was wearing low rise thongs from Abercrombie and Fitch? Mine were Fruit of the Loom. A multi-pack number with rainbow stripes. I was in 6th grade. My soccer team was jogging around the fiend singing every word to 50 Cent’s Lollipop.
6th grade. Why on earth did anyone in the 6th grade need a thong? That was also the time of super low rise jeans and baby doll t-shirts and The O.C. was still on TV. Ohhhh popular culture.
The point is, it took me until 9th grade before I purchased one. My friend, Caiti, and I were at the mall. It had a Victoria’s Secret, an Auntie Anne’s pretzels, and not much else. Not that it mattered, because what else is necessary in life to bored teenage girls? They had a ‘Buy 3 Panties for $15’. I just so happened to have $20 burning a hole in my horrible, pink canvas, shoulder purse. I bought a cream colored lace thong with three little blue bows on the back, a maroon lacy number with embroidered blue flowers, and an extra sassy pair of black polka dots that said “Sexy Little Thing” on the back. We snuck them home in our purses so Caiti’s mom wouldn’t ask about them.
I wore the “Sexy Little Thing”‘s pair one time to school. Then realized that there are a lot of thongs that are horribly uncomfortable. Why did it ride up? Where was it headed? I didn’t even know that part on my body existed...I put them up and forgot about them for a year.
I wore the cream colored pair when I was 16. I was going on a date with The First One before he went off to college. I wore a chiffon zebra dress and had a bunch of drunk college boys growl at me and told me they’d be my lion.
On the way home, The First One pulled over to a road side stop. It was a full moon. We danced to some R&B song…I can’t recall which. Then he begged. Groaned. Beseeched me to show him my thong. The cream one with the bows. The moonlight lit up my bare ass. And my bare ass lit up his eyes. And my mind lit up with the idea of the power that I held. That I hold.
In my wallet I have approximately 6 different punch cards for various coffee shops. I have an expired voters registration (don’t condemn me! my updated one is at home), my Target card, business cards that I never hand out, and the remnants of a washing machine chewed up drivers license. I also still have the drink coupon that a mister D. Jackson gave me in Love Field one day.
I was traveling back from a work conference. Tired of my coworkers, in need of delicious food and a decent drink, I stopped in to the mid-scale wine bar in the Southwest Airlines hub of the airport. I ordered a little flight of wine and opened up my book.
Within 5 minutes, I felt that prickle. The one that rises the minuscule hairs behind your ears. The same ones that long to be breathed upon and lightly kissed. The spot that everyone want to feel the brush of lips. Those hairs instinctually know that someone worth knowing is standing behind you. Gazing at the seat next to you.
The man sits down next to me at the bar. He asks me what I’m drinking and for a recommendation. He looks like a cross between Anderson Cooper and the nice guy you date in college. Mr. Jackson asks me why I’m traveling, what I enjoy doing, and tells me about his life as an environmental engineer. He talks about grey water systems and business.
Mr. Jackson and myself talk for an hour. He gets up to leave and conspiratorially half whispers, “Well, it was a pleasure meeting you. This is the best conversation I’ve had in a long time. I’ve successfully waited out the traffic.” He slips me a drink coupon, “Have a drink from me.”
I attempt to google him a few weeks later. No traces of Mr. College Boy Cooper. The Instinctual Hairs will need to keep up their vigilant watch.
And the drink coupon sits expired in the little zippered pouch. A calling card perhaps?
We met for lunch. He had dark brown hair. It was wavy and he tamed it back with some product. He had dark eyes that twinkled when he smiled. And he smiled a lot. He had texted me to ask if he could order for me so I would not have to wait in line and be late getting back to work.
I barely remember what we talked about. He just seemed to smile at me and ask odd questions. All he figured out about me was that I am terrified of birds. And all i figured out about him is that he smelled delicious and I wanted to touch that chest that completely filled out his khaki colored fishing shirt. Mmm.
So we went out again. I was able to walk to dinner since he picked a restaurant 2 blocks away from my house. And my goodness, he was handsome. He wore these awful little sweat whisking/fishing style pants and boots and a long sleeve university shirt. Not stylish. But still extremely good looking. How is that even possible? Someone tell me how some men can pull that off.
In every way that our lunch date was not chatty, our dinner date was. He asked me about past relationships and my job and religion and music. He got me to tell him what I usually go for in a guy. Then we went back to his place. He works as security and hates his job. It allows him to live next door to a store that he is supposed to watch. It looks like a used bookstore, but he says he thinks its a porn shop. But his place is all stained concrete and perfectly clean. He talked about how he needs a “woman’s touch”. It’s true that he needs a throw and some art. Pictures. He needs photos of people he loves. I’m not sure if he loves anyone though. He doesn’t seem to have many friends.
Is that a bad sign?
Maybe. But I’m not deciding one way or the other right now. Mostly, I’m going to focus on how sweet and complimentary he was. On his good humor and ability to keep up with my jokes. On his big chest and arms and the way he would unconsciously trace his fingers along my arm and shoulder. I loved the way he leaned in to kiss me and had soft, full, sure-of-himself and aware-of-me lips.
His kisses were good. So I’m going to focus on that sign.
He smelled like Polo Ralph Lauren Explorer. Or Aqua Di Gio. Or Every Man Jack shampoo. He religiously washed his hands. And his body for that matter. Sometimes three showers a day. His bath towel had an identity of its own. Like the Batman character Two-Face. One side was to dry his body and the other was for his head. Sometimes (when things were going downhill) to throw off his cleanliness equilibrium, I would shower at his place and scrub the Head Side all over my body. Vindication for the way his unclean words rubbed me raw…or something melodramatic like that. Pettiness really. I’m good at being petty. It’s been more than a year and a half since we broke up. I’ve been on countless dates. Kissed 11 other guys. Dated two men grown men. One of them, I didn’t really realize I was dating. The other one made me know from the first date that my life was going to be impacted by him in a big way. All races, all heights, all sorts of personalities. Dates with guys that say things like “I even have an ‘Ice Sculpture Guy!’ and ‘You’re like a Long Island Iced Tea…complex…varied’. Dates that lasted 7 hours. A relationship where I knew his deepest secrets and he didn’t know my middle name. And yet, I can still recall all of the colognes that The First One wore.
Do I want to?
Does he want to?
Did I taste test 9 different wine for a friend’s upcoming nuptials?
Did I break up with someone who was in love with me?
When people find out we ended things, do they say “Oh! But he was so handsome!”?
Have I read articles on Thought Catalog like “What It Feels Like To Date Someone More Beautiful Than You”?
Have I gone on 3 different dates with 3 different guys in the last 3 days?
Did I meet 2 of the guys on Tinder?
Is my best friend celebrating her one year anniversary with a man that is tall, handsome, an officer in the military, plays the piano, loves to dance, loves to read, and loves her?
Did I start a blog to write about my love life as a means of catharsis?
Is that what this is actually about instead of making out?