Friday, 30 September 2011

Unrequited love

I was watching a film with a friend the other day, and there was a character in it who was secretly in love with someone who didn't love him back. This led to us swapping stories of unrequited love, and I realised that I've actually, thankfully, never been in that position (aside from my adoration for Take That, still sadly unrequited. Such is life.)

What I did realise, though, was that quite a few blokes over the years have felt that way about me, more, in fact, as I began to think about it. This is not to say that I'm a goddess (far from it) but I think it must have something to do with my personality - I'm always one for the underdog, always keen to incude people and befriend them if they're lonely. Clearly, this has sometimes backfired...

Firstly, there was the son of one of my parents' neighbours. Let's call him D. As a girl I went to a single sex girl's boarding school, so to say I was somewhat starved of contact with the opposite sex would be an understatement. So, when I was home in the holidays I was naturally drawn to a group of lads who hung out near my house. My parents disapproved of them, which made them only more interesting, of course. Anyhow, one of them asked me, casually, whether I wanted to come over for dinner one night the next week - his parents were away, he explained, and he had to cook for himself anyway. Put like that, how could I refuse?

Now, D was no an oil painting. He was about 5'8" (two inches shorter than me), slightly overweight and sported what I can only describe as a rat's tail pony tail. The idea of him as an object of desire had never once crossed my mind.

Anyhow, I turned up on the appointed evening, only to discover to my horror that far from being out, his Mum was there, and had helped him cook. They'd set up for dinner in the caravan adjoining the house where he slept; linen table cloth, wilting carnation in a vase, and a bottle of Black Tower wine (I've never been able to look at a bottle since.)

I some how made it through dinner, quickly. I have no recollection of what we talked about, but I suspect I spent most of it wolfing the food down so I could make a quick exit.

Then after dinner, "coffee". Before he went out to get it, he went over to his CD player and put on, horror of horrors - Take My Breath Away, by Berlin. Top Gun had recently come out, and this was clearly part of his seduction routine. Him, Tom Cruise, me Kelly McGillis. Or not....

I think I made some very odd sounding excuse about Mum and Dad needing me home to feed the cat immediately or she'd die, and I literally ran out of there.

Oh golly, I had no idea he'd been interested in me. Not at all. What an idiot.

A week or so later, I got together with one of his friends (cruel, I know.) On finding out, D got hold of him and I tell no lie, said he'd "punch his lights out." As much as I was honoured by this medieval jousting type behaviour, I was also astonished. How could I have not seen how he felt?

As I said earlier, this is not the only time I've been insanely stupid. But those stories are for another day...



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