Thursday, April 30, 2009

Three Truths & One Lie: Paradise Lost

You know that awesome game Three Truths and A Lie wherein players profess four statements, three being factual and one being fabricated? No? Yes? Maybe? Not applicable?

This week I thought we could play it together. I will post Monday-Thursday three true stories and one tall tale, then on Friday you can vote which story you think is the fake.

Is this fun? I can't tell.

But here it goes, Story Four:

In my third year of college I decided to blow the home joint and head to the University of Utah. I knew maybe two people on campus, besides my savvy roommate Amanda, so it really felt like a bold choice.

But lonely sometimes too.

I didn't walk around campus high five-ing people anymore, I was just a guppy in a tank. Man, that was a good sentence.

My Human Behavior class was ginormous. It was the size of two bloated movie theaters and packed to the gills. I don't even know what packed to the gills means, but if it means that people were also taking seats on the floor and stairs, it was the right terminology.

On the first day of class I walked in and lost my appetite. How was I supposed to be my flirty self in a room full of strangers? This caused a physiological blockage because my learning was always accompanied with flirting. It kept things interesting during class time, group projects and study groups. I had attributed my good grades to good chemistry with at least one person in the class (if not the student teacher).

Looking around the room, my eye was attracted to a large Hawaiian print shirt belonging to a guy with dark hair. I thought it was a good start, so I moved towards the empty seat next to him. As I sat down he acknowledged me with a slight smile. I smiled back only to notice that he may have been the most handsome male I had ever seen in my life.

It must've been is aura, because I can't explain his looks. Besides his dark hair and ensuing full beard, there was nothing overly-unique about his appearance. I just liked how he was. The guarantee had come, I was going to get an A plus in this class.

We didn't talk much on the first day, he seemed really attentive. I allowed for that to be the case, and I never flirt on the first day of class, anyway. He looked a bit older than a typical junior in college, but he had no wedding ring. Older students, as you know, are more serious. They get the concept behind tuition.

At our next class I quickly spotted him again, seated close to the stage on the left side. He was wearing a new Hawaiian print shirt for which I was grateful. Easy for the eyes to find, and blessed be, easy on the eyes to sit next to.

"Hey." I said sitting down.

"Hey." He glanced at me.

"You wear Hawaiian shirts every day?"

"I am passionate about Hawaii."

Perfect I thought. The more we talk about Hawaii, the more he will have to visualize me in Hawaii with him.

"I've never been, isn't that sad?" I sighed.

"Totally. It is magical." His dark eyes were so intense.

"You'll have to give me some recommendations for my premiere voyage."

Or take me there. On our honeymoon.

"Totally."

Good start. I called it a day.

At home that night I announced the news to Amanda. We christened my new catch, Hawaii Boy an obvious name, but code for cuteness.

Code for cuteness. Slick use of alliteration.

Over the next few weeks Hawaii Boy and I sat side-by-side learning the inner workings of the human psyche. Two people could not ask for better background noise than a professor talking about love, denial, dependence and compensation. Yes, all of the above.

But then a month had gone by and Hawaii Boy had not asked me out. Not even the time we walked to class together as he towed his beach cruiser with bottles of Orange Crush tethered to the back bench. Come to think of it, he didn't even offer me an Orange Crush either. I love that juice.

Amanda and I tried to sort it out. Gay? No. He looked at me with non-gay eyes. In a Relationship? Maybe. But he should've dumped her by now. For me. Married? No. He would've mentioned it. I concluded that he was just shy, and I needed to work harder.

So I did. I vamped up my look and took more obvious strides in displaying my interest. Sometimes I'd bring him little gifts (related to the subject at hand) or stop by the Coffee Hut for two hot chocolates. He was always thankful and sweet, but permanently aloof.

On the last day of class I admitted I had one day before admitting defeat. Soon we wouldn't have a tri-weekly reunion to keep our relationship stimulated, this had to be an hour of full court press. I took my regular seat next to Hawaii Boy, opened my notebook and assumed we'd be briefed about the final.

Our professor, Birkenstock-clad, water bottle in hand, microphone in another, announced that instead of talking about the final, today he'd like to get to know us. On the last day he wanted to get to know his flock of crowded sheep? That is entirely backward, and as I type this I am still scratching my head.

"How many of you are from Utah?"

Hawaii Boy and I raised our hands.

"How many of you are hoping to graduate from the U of U?"

Hawaii Boy and I were still up in the air.

"How many of you are married?"

My hand came down.

Hawaii Boy's did not.

I died. Totally died.

"How many of you have children?"

Hawaii Boy's hand remained elevated.

"One child?"

Hawaii Boy didn't flinch.

"Two children?"

Immovable.

"Three children?"

With an auditorium full of hands now resting, the professor looked at what remained. Just like I had on day one, the professor honed in on the guy with the light blue Hawaiian print shirt, sitting close to the stage with his hand still up.

"Hello Sir."

"Hello." Hawaii Boy said back, his body full of nervous energy.

"And how many children do you have?" The professor was now crouching above us.

"Five." Hawaii Boy responded with a shaky voice. "All boys."

"Well, "said the professor, "stand up so that we can give you an ovation."

Hawaii Boy stood and turned his body away from my mine. Everyone clapped, someone hooted, and he bowed in pretend modesty. My eyes were so unsure where to look, they focused on a piece of ripped paper on the floor below. I clapped, but I really wanted to slap his ears simultaneously with my frustrated hands.

When he sat down, Hawaii Boy turned to me and moved in closer than he had all semester long.

"I have a brother. He's single." He whispered to my face.

"I am in a relationship." I lied, keeping my head down.

This might explain my apathy for Hawaiian vacations. I still haven't been.