Tuesday, October 22, 2002

"You know you've had a sad night when you're home before your parents."


I'd met her a week before at a farewell dinner. We were sitting diagonally across from each other next to mutual friends and amongst the four of us we'd covered most of the stock smalltalk subjects - film, television, music, current events - as the banquet progressed. We talked over the intricacies of Aeon Flux. I laughed it off when she proposed going back to my place to watch Robocop. She called me rude when I picked up some street press & flicked through it to see if my photo was in the social pages.

Looking back over the night in the days that followed, I concluded that this was a person I might like to get to know better. There was a little spark, but no all encompasing can't-get-you-out-of-my-head crush. So on Thursday I send a text message suggesting catching up, maybe seeing a movie. She calls and accepts. We leave things open-ended.

On Friday I have to stay late at work; I call & let her know nothing will be happening that night. I call Saturday afternoon & propose a different activity; a bunch of drama students were performing monologues at a theatre at the National Gallery & I thought that might be more interesting than a movie.

We meet in Civic, running late again, so it's back to my place so I can have a quick shower & change. It's after about 10 minutes of sitting in the lounge chatting that I realise that whatever spark had been there a week before was gone. She still had it though; she was sitting forward, asking lots of questions, hell, she even turned off the background music - attention was completely focussed. The only thing going through my head was how opinionated and irritating this girl was & how I could end the night as soon as possible.

I began running scenarios in my head. I could have set up an elaborate ruse in which I would text someone, get them to call me and I'd "have to go into work", but I dismissed that as a cop out. She was on the other side of town, also vehicularly liberated, and I could just strand her could I. We met Ms O, grabbed some japanese takeaway from Green Square and made for the show.

Arriving just as the introduction was concluding, we found some seats just as the first performer walked on stage. It was by no means a professional production & was never billed as such; it was an opportunity for some drama students to perform in front of a live audience, albeit one filled with family and friends, one almost guaranteed to laugh, clap and cheer no matter how they performed. That didn't stop her throwing in comments every time the last performer was exiting and the next coming on stage. Nor did it stop her from decrying the lack of originality and passion in the performances during the intermission. "I mean, there's just no feeling! There's no breadth of experience coming through any of these people!" Give me a break. The second half was a little more polished than the first, with the highlight for my money the guy from the Magnet Mart ad doing a piece originally performed by Al Pacino in The Devils Advocate.

We were meant to go out with Ms O & her theatre friends after the show, but I couldn't bring myself to subject my friends to her nitpicking analysis, so it was time for a ruse. I flicked through the dusty old file & went with the classic "I'm quite tired" which was easy to pull of, as I was. Dropping her home we find the driveway empty, she drops the "You know you've had a sad night when you're home before your parents." line, I respond with "It was good catching up." and consciously omit anything along the lines of "I'll call you." or "Let's do it again some time." and head into Manuka for a coffee before going back to Kingston to watch the English Premiership League games on Foxtel with the gang.

Live & learn eh...

Posted by Dean @ 10/22/2002 09:01:00 am

...Survey says...


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