Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Wayback - Cradle Robbing

In 2000, I went to Italy for 12 days. While there, I got a crush on a boy many years younger. This is me explaining to two former readers of this blog. From August 25, 2004.

For Diva and Trillian, a tale of (almost) unrequited love.

He’s just adorable. Amused gray eyes, shy smile, large, strong arms and hands, tall enough to look up at, and smart, but oh, way too young. He came on slowly, just getting under my skin. It could have been the exotic location, or it could be that he’s just adorable. I found myself looking for him everywhere, wanting to know exactly where he stood with relation to me at all times. If I wasn’t looking directly at him, I used my peripheral vision to search for the black hair, the beard or the blue baseball cap.

In the cathedrals and in the ruins, I found myself standing in the back, away from the guide at the front of the crowd, just so I could talk to him and be close to him. He’s so eager to learn, so aware of everything around him, so positive about everything. I wonder if I was ever that young, ever that polite, or ever that enthusiastic.

I started to admire him in Venice, noticed his build, the maleness of his body and the way he moved. He held a beer, a Beck’s, in one hand as he saw me look at him, and managed to look sheepish and unapologetic at the same time. On the long ride to Florence in the bus, I played games with his cousin in the hopes that I could get his attention and talk to him. It took a while, but it seemed to work. We played card games and Uno, and I taught him how to play Gin. He proceeded to kick my ass in Gin almost every time thereafter, but I taught him. Maybe some day I’ll get to ask him his strategy, how he manages to win at least 3 out of 4 games.

In Florence, he mentioned going out at night so we decided to go together. We found the open-air bar recommended by the guidebook, and had a few drinks while listening to, of all things, a Dixie-land jazz band called Dixie Train. Had to go from Texas to Florence to hear that. He talked about music and movies, and was charming and funny. The next night in a Florentine bar called Be Bop, I was nervous that his leg was touching mine under the table as we listened to the cover band. I entertained fantasies about being alone with him, finding the courage to tell him that I found him attractive, or just jumping him in a dark corner of the hotel, but always turned away by the simple fact of age.

Thinking about him now makes me smile more than I have in a long time. Two nights in Rome I went to his room instead of going to bed, ostensibly to play cards and relieve my boredom, but in actuality just to be in his company for a few hours more.

I do wish to be 21 at this moment, more than anything I have wanted before. Does it count that I feel 21, that my heart pounds when I see that he responded to an e-mail, that at this minute I can’t imagine the rest of my life without being able to see his face out of the corner of my eye? (Maybe I can call him, and tell him that I just want to use him for sex. Any 21-year-old would go for that, right? I could call him and tell him that I have a crush on him, and he won’t think that it’s creepy at all. My family would approve, and so would his, especially since his mother liked me. When he moves to Seattle to go to stuntman school, he can just take me with him. That would work.)

I want the courage and conviction to do something about what I am feeling, or for the feeling to go away. I keep telling myself that there is no way that he could like me or be attracted to me. I am too old, overweight, too annoyingly sarcastic, and too passive to be someone that he could love.

Too many people were in the way in Italy, and also just me, embarrassed for what I feel, afraid of what my friends would think of me, terrified that he would not feel the same way about me. And yet, telling myself all the horrible things, all the ways in which it wouldn’t work, inventing flaws, I still feel these things for this boy.


Diane said...

Do you still have his number?

Dolar Vijay said...
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Zoo Of Thoughts said...

This is good! Nice way of putting it all.

Victoria said...

I like your writing style :) Keep it up for sure.

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