Saturday, May 7, 2011

Coco Higgins - The Self-Indulgent Whines of a Total Weenie

April 29, 2011

Tonight I was at my usual coffee shop haunt with a stack of 75 undergrad papers to grade. A friend and fellow grad student shared my table. She pointed out that one of her students was sitting on one of the couches, and unfortunately this student may possibly be dumber than a box of hair. She wasn’t in my view so I stood up and performed the most obvious ruse to disguise my true intentions of having a look at this supposed dunce: I pretended to stretch. Upon doing so, I looked over and I saw a super cute girl.

Sure, she was looking slouchy in some weird sweatpants. This reminded me of George Costanza from Seinfeld. Did she give up on life and the world? Who wears sweatpants in public? Okay, they weren’t thick cotton drawstring sweatpants. They were black, of a thin fabric. But still – these aren’t pants that one would normally wear in public.

But she had short brown hair and a pouty face kind of like Kristen Stewart. Yes, go ahead, judge and psychoanalyze me all you want, but I like that angsty look. And of course it belonged on this girl. She’s an undergrad and probably at least eight years younger than me. (Good god, I feel old.) So despite the pants, I became a little smitten. Not twitterpated or anything, but you know, enough to get distracted from the monotony of grading endless papers about Egyptian sculpture. (“This sculpture was made by a human,” wrote one student. My comment: “as opposed to aliens???” True story. Okay, if you were an art historian you might haughtily say, “Maybe she meant that it was an acheiropoietos,” but I highly doubt that she even knows what that is, and this line of thinking should be saved for my term paper, and not this blog.)

The night went on and I continued to read the thoughtless, never-ending essays. The kid came over to our table to talk to my friend to ask something about the upcoming test for their class. They talked a bit, and my friend (god bless her heart), introduced me to Kristen Stewart. We shook hands, I smiled. Then she left.

As a side note, this is the same gregarious friend who, after the Lady Gaga concert, kept asking strangers, “Hey do you know any lesbians???” She was drunk and did this for me, to my embarrassment (not really). The point is, she looks out for me, in amusing ways, and I appreciate it.

Anyway, Kristen went back to the couch and I continued to grade my papers.

Then another girl came into the crowded coffee shop and got in line to order. (Not even gonna go into detail about the hot barista.) She was probably about fifteen feet away from me. Short girl, short brown hair. Totally adorbs. She sat outside, and eventually my friend and I went out there to smoke. We had eye contact for half a second and that’s about it.

Friend and I went back inside and continued to work. Eventually both girls left. Nothing happened. Outside-girl was probably straight, so I’m not feeling any sense of loss. But the other girl was slightly more promising.

What prevented me from going up to her and talking to her more? I constructed the following reasons, which ultimately paralyzed me:
  1. I haven’t done laundry in 5 trillion years and I don’t like the clothes I’m wearing.
  2. I’m a grad student and she’s an undergrad, and we were explicitly forbidden to have friendly interactions with these plebeians.
  3. She’s apparently not the brightest crayon in the box.
  4. I’m a weenie.

Let’s think about these again and why they’re irrelevant:

  1. Who cares? My hair is still cute. She was wearing sweatpants for Chrissakes, so what if I’m wearing a ratty old shrunken flannel shirt and hole-y jeans?
  2. Who cares? Not like I’m the one grading her (less-then-stellar) papers and tests. Besides, the department doesn’t need to know, right?
  3. Who cares? I’m not looking for a life partner, just some fun.

So really it all boils down to this:

I’m a weenie.

I’ve lost all sense of game, if I ever had any to begin with. IF I ever approach girls, I’m usually drunk. Or it’s a gradual process that involves introduction by mutual friends. In a shared social situation, I can be funny and endearing. But as a first approach, I absolutely fail.

What the hell happened? I got out of my long-term relationship two years ago. I haven’t dated anyone the whole time I’ve been in grad school, and that’s approaching the one-year mark. My excuse is that academic life precludes me from having a social life outside my small circle of colleagues in the department. And I have very little time to devote to such endeavors because I’m too busy researching, reading, writing and grading student exams and essays.

But the truth is: I have all kinds of time to sit on my ass and watch tennis matches and follow all kinds of useless information on the internet. Okay, most of all this is done in the wee hours of the night/morning, so being an inverted creature forces the misanthropic behavior. But hey, Kristen Stewart likes vampires right? And I’m a vampire dandy!

But if I have all that time to do useless things, why can’t I get off my ass and do laundry, go to lesbian bars and hit on girls and get laid? This is really quite pathetic.

One of my friends has managed to date a few guys and is now in somewhat of a serious relationship. Granted, she went and looked for it, and clearly wants one. But if she can make time for it, why can’t I? I’ve been telling myself that I don’t want to be in a relationship, yet I am now beginning to question that line of reasoning.

I certainly don’t want a suffocating 24/7 relationship like the last one I had. Yes, true. But not all relationships are like that. I can casually date, or find a better relationship, a better person. But then I tell myself that I can barely take care of myself and my cat, and I’m too used to being single – set in my ways of being a slob who doesn’t do the dishes or vacuum, keeping erratic sleeping patterns revolving around class times and tennis matches, and engaging in pointless internet behavior.

No I wasn’t always like this. When I was in my last relationship, I was completely domesticated. Kept a job during normal business hours, ate healthier, made enough money to hire a maid, and stayed away from the internet. I seriously only discovered Facebook and YouTube in 2007, I think. But then while that all seems like a healthy lifestyle, I felt like a caged animal.

But is my life that much better now? I get to do what I want, certainly, and that makes me happy. But shouldn’t I want something more? The truth is, I enjoy being a nocturnal slob who trolls around the internets, lives in the land of art historical theoretica, drinks and smokes with friends and watches sports. Is that so wrong?

You want to know the ironic part of all of this coffee shop missed connection shit? The barista (not the hot girl) dude has become pretty friendly with me. He gives me free pastries in the middle of the night when there aren’t too many customers around. He also got my friend a shot of whiskey when I told him it was said friend’s birthday. One night I even got him to play the Xanadu song in the coffee shop. He’s been kind of flirty with me and went so far as to say “this better be worth my while,” before playing the dumb song. He’s also called me “so darned cute” and engaged in really childish flirting by consciously and openly trying to annoy me. I don’t think he knows I’m a lesbian. (Moral question: should I tell him, or just continue getting free pastries? Is that a soft-core form of prostitution???)

What the hell, MAN!!!!!!

I really need to get out more.

1 comment:

  1. oh man, it is so hard to even say hello to someone you might be interested in. I've done a lot of internet dating, but there is something exciting about (soberly) going up to a person and flirting or asking them out... something so exciting that it makes me feel like I'm going to barf.