You are currently browsing the daily archive for January 12, 2008.
Will lived on the first floor of my dorm during freshman year. He was tall with deep-set eyes and an endearing awkwardness. One night a group of us were walking back to our dorm after leaving the school’s movie theater, and he hung back to poke me between jokes. I remember thinking how childishly sweet he was. A few weeks later he asked me out.
That weekend my roommates went home, and I had a lazy Saturday to myself before getting ready for the night. I was wearing a “borrowed” pink top and black skirt after trying on several outfits, unsure of what he had planned. He came to my door to pick me up wearing dress pants, a button-up shirt, and his short, curly hair slicked back.
We went to Applebee’s where he recommended the chicken-fried steak. I don’t remember what we talked about, but I do remember that there were no awkward silences. We just never ran out of things to say to each other. He seemed completely at ease, so different from the general silence that he exhibited when others were around. The only clue to any inner anxiety came as we got up to leave the restaurant when he removed a large pile of napkin shreds from his lap and placed it on the table.
Once in his car, he offered me some mints while we headed back toward campus for a concert. He admitted that it was a concert he had to attend as a music major, but he promised that it would be good. We arrived about fifteen minutes early, so he pulled out pen and paper to challenge me to a game of tic-tac-toe. We managed to squeeze in several games before the lights flickered to signal the beginning of the concert. It was lovely, and I sneaked a few glances at him to find him completely engrossed in the music.
At the end of the night, he walked me back to my door. I hugged him and thanked him for showing me a good time. It was the best date I’ve ever had with someone I knew deep down I wasn’t interested in dating again.
He and I remained friends after that one date, and I remained slightly frustrated that he couldn’t let everyone see the charming, funny guy underneath the shy exterior.
Will later dated another friend for almost two years. He originally intended to go to law school but then ended up at a NY culinary school instead. I was happy to hear the news because it seemed perfect for him. He’s now engaged to a sweet girl and working at a fabulous restaurant in Atlanta.
I still listen to the cd of classical music he gave me for my birthday that spring. I haven’t seen or spoken to him in several years, but I occasionally look him up on Facebook to see how he’s doing. He deserves the best.
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