Abusing Nostalgia: The First Date

Today is Nicole's birthday.

I've written a lot of things about Nicole.  Heck, I wrote an entire book about her, really.  I've written so much about her (and us), that I thought I'd share some of it.  Pretty much all of it was written just for us.  I've never considered the possibility of trying to get it published anywhere.

This is how we "met."



“Hello”

            “Hey,” said Brandon in his usually upbeat, somewhat innocent manner.
            “Brandon,” I said.  This is the relationship we had: I was mean to him.  I mean, I wasn’t literally mean to him, but I joked around in a very mean fashion.  I knew he could take it though, or else I wouldn’t have done it.
            “I just got a message from some guy telling me I’m cute and funny.”  See, he said things like this and it was impossible for me to not be mean to him.  It was impossible.
            “I take it he’s never met you,” I said.
            “On Friendster,” he said, which is funny because the assumption here is that I not only knew what Friendster was, but I knew how it worked.  But it was a safe assumption to make.
            “You’re on Friendster?” I said as I typed the address into my web browser.  I wasn’t doing anything work related, anyway, and this gave me yet another source of distraction.  It was hard work finding ways to spend so much free time when I couldn’t leave the office.
            I pulled up the Friendster page and logged-in – as I said, I not only knew what Friendster was, I was well aware of how it worked.  Hell, the last girl I really dated I met on this thing, but that didn’t last too long.  Still, it was an interesting system, particularly for those of us who had a hard time braving the Los Angeles social scene.
            “Add me to your friends’ list,” said Brandon, so I looked him up and added him to my friends list.  “Isn’t that a great picture of me?”
            By this point, though, I’d quit listening to him.  I was now scanning the people in his friends list in hopes that they weren’t all gay men.  They weren’t.
            In particular, one photo caught my eye.  The name above it was Nicole.  So I clicked on her.
            “Hello,” I said as the page loaded, “who’s Nicole?”
            “You should send her a message,” said Brandon, “she’s totally chill.  You’d get along with her.”
            So I did.  And this is what I sent:

Date:
Sunday, October 24, 2004 11:42:00 AM
Subject:
Hello
Message:
Brandon said I should send you a message. It
happened much like this:

Brandon: Some guy I don't even know sent me a
message on Friendster telling me I'm cute and
funny.

Me: You're on Friendster?

Brandon: Yeah.

Me: Let me add you to my friends' list.

**I look up Brandon.**

Brandon: Isn't that a good picture of me?

Me: Yeah, it's fan-freaking-tastic, Brandon.

Brandon: Isn't that a good description?

**I ignore Brandon and scroll down the page to his
list of friends.**

Me: Hello. Who's Nicole?

Brandon: Nicole! She's a girl I used to work with.
You should send her a message.

Me: Okay.

It dawns on me, however, that this could be the
worst conversation starter ever. But I hold out
hope.

            And they say romance is dead.


Below is what I wrote in my journal three days after our eventual first date (on December 1st, 2004).  I think it says it all.


Saturday, December 04, 2004



            I really am bad at this.

            So, Wednesday night.  I met Nicole at Molly Malone’s for drinks.  She was waiting for me when I got there.  It took me about three seconds to see her as she looks a lot like she does in her pictures.  But not exactly.  In fact, she actually looks better than she does in her pictures.

            I got there and she’d already ordered drinks.  I was extremely calm, which was just weird.  I mean, I wasn’t nervous in the slightest.  She was.  But the more we talked the more she relaxed and, of course, the more we drank the more comfortable we felt.

            I don’t know.  I could go into a lot of details about it but it’s getting late.  Basically, we spent a few hours at the bar and then a few hours here at my apartment and I really like Nicole.  I’m trying to be good about this.  I am.

            She’s coming over tomorrow night.

Eight plus years later and she's still the most amazing person I have ever known.

For what it's worth, I proposed in the parking lot of that bar, but that's a story for another time.