Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Two Sides to the Story

Here's a good story, and not even about me (although, by the end, I'm sure it will be.)

Today, I was in the Student Services office of my building, just hanging out. A rather awkward boy came in and asked, "I need to find a student."

The worker, my good friend Heidi, said, "Well, I need some more details."

The young man explained that he had dinner with a girl the night before, and neglected to get her last name. He knew her first name, and that she was a freshman at this college, and was double-majoring in Philosophy and something else. Of course, that was little help because CGS students do not declare majors until their sophomore year. Now, Student Services staff has the ability to look up all sorts of people in our database, and there were only two freshmen with the first name he was looking for, however, that information cannot be divulged to boneheads off the street who are infatuated with someone and yet can't bother to get their last name or phone number. Still, because Heidi is a nice person, she told the kid that if he leaves a message for this young lady, she would see if she could get it into the proper hands.

After the complicated process of him locating an envelope and a piece of paper ("All the way to the right. All the way... No, right."), the boy took several minutes to compose a note to his fair maiden. He then left his missive and his information and finally left. Of course, the second the door closed, most of the girls swooned and talked about how adorable it was that this guy was going to these lengths to find this girl. They were forgetting the fact that this is 2010 and there are millions of ways to track down people, especially if they go to the same university as you, but I guess this is less stalker-y.

Let's not even talk about the simple logic (Get that number, man!), because we don't know the exact circumstances of their meeting (maybe she didn't want him to know her last name.). But knowing the culture of the school, which is around 65% women, this guy probably is a rare find. I think that girls who didn't think he was a little creepy probably would be impressed at the lengths he went and the embarrassment he risked just to see them again. With all the possibilities at the place, he must have thought she was pretty special to come all the way to her school, ask about her in the main office in front of the employees, and leave her a note, probably suggesting another dining hall meet-up. Ballsy, that's for sure.

There's also the other side of the coin (and here's where it kind of becomes about me). I am almost twice this kid's age, but locking back, if I were in his shoes, I probably would have done the same thing. Hell, I probably did. I used to rig the weekly drawing at my video store job to try and ensure that girls I liked would come in. Or I would simply get their phone number off of their account. Before facebook and internet dating, there were all manner of schemes involved in courting a woman, and almost none of them involved actually approaching them and asking them out on a date. Why, you ask? I don't know!

At the heart of this story is probably a young man who chatted up a girl in the dining hall, and before he knew it, she was gone, and if he was planning on asking her out (or getting her full name), he never made it. He was probably too chicken, like me when I was his age. Now, he wants to correct that mistake, and there's a chance he might see her again, but really, he should have nailed it down the first time. Sure, there's a fine line between being creepy and being forward, but if I've learned one thing in my years since I was that boy, it's that you might as well go for it. You may not get that second chance.

I hope it all works out for him. I don't know that it will, because the way the school is, it tends to embitter some women. Most of them probably never get properly asked out at all while they are there, and the ones that do are probably treated rather poorly. Not to disparage all BU men, but, based on the stories I've heard, when there's probably another girl right around the corner, I don't think there's a lot of incentive to be gentlemanly. This sheepish young bard may be her best chance, so she may be wise to take it. He did.

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