Episode VIII: Sting like a bee

My friend Kala told me she showed a friend this very column and he asked: “Can he get a date anymore?” This proposed an interesting complex – pitting my relationship and dating life head to head against my writing career with the Courier and you, the reader. In a related context, a few weeks back I received an email from an acquaintance saying that they had been reading my column, and that as much as they enjoyed my adventures, they wished me “good luck with finding something decent in the dating scene, even if it means a less interesting column.

I have perhaps painted some very colourful, albeit true, portraits of my dates, but I should add that there are other sides to the men I’ve met.

A while ago, I met a wonderful UBC student who just happened to be a dreamboat: 6’5”, nerd glasses, and named after legendary boxer Muhammad Ali. We spoke a few times before meeting. The third time we spoke, it was almost two in the morning. Despite the hour, spontaneity took the front seat and we agreed to meet up at Broadway and Alma - the halfway point between our places.

We ended up on a walk, and took seat in the middle of an empty tennis court nearby. As we told each other candid tales of our pasts, a thunder and lightning storm broke out of nowhere. Before I knew it, I was in the middle of the steamiest and most breathtaking first kiss I had ever experienced. I am talking some straight up Ryan Gosling in The Notebook type shit.

The next week was a whirlwind rush of fast-paced cinematic romance. The following night we met in the wee hours of morning again, this time on the lawn of the UBC library, where we sat in the grass talking and holding hands for hours.
On what would be our final ‘date’, we spent almost twelve hours together, beginning with a pitcher of margaritas, and walking all through downtown, inappropriately and drunkenly making out in public places. This isn’t the type of behaviour I would normally partake in, but in the context of the situation, it felt so natural. We ended up seeing Band of Horses at The Commodore, and arriving early, perched ourselves on a couch upstairs, nonchalantly entangled in each other’s limbs, while two different waitresses walked by and told us we were “such a cute couple.”

Partially intoxicated and more than certainly high on heartstrings, I was happy with someone for the first time in a very long time. When the band finally played, we moved to the dance floor hand in hand. I really felt like I was living a romantic moment that I would normally gush over in a movie theatre. Following the show, I had to go home and pack for a trip to Seattle that I was to catch a bus at 5 AM for. He ended up taking me out for pancakes at a diner and stayed with me right up until I left. All weekend we exchanged cute text messages and emails, right up until the night before I came home.

Towards the end of an outdoor music festival, I was ready to come home and rekindle my romance. Wasted beyond repair, I smiled with delight when Muhammed showed up as an incoming call, mid-set. “I really have to talk to you,” he said with anxiousness. Barely audible and only slightly coherent, I told him I’d call him after the show. I did so, as part of a massive crowd shuffling toward the exit gates. It was at this time he informed me that he was actually seeing someone long distance, and as much as he liked me, he had to end it.

This was not the ideal way to hear the news. I spent the evening in a mess – after being force fed $11 margaritas by my American friends, I gave my number to a bartender, and ended up at Denny’s where I tipped my server, Niquita, $20 in empathy for her niceness. On my Greyhound back to Vancouver, Muhammed contacted me, and I ended up going straight to his dorm to “talk things through” before we parted ways. After a long conversation, he asked me to spend the night, which I reluctantly agreed to, partially because it was three in the morning, and partially because I suppose I was a bit needy. At least love was not awkward, just bad.

//JJ Brewis

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