Throughout the entire rehearsal period and into the first couple of performances I remained clueless as to whether Veronica gave a hoot about me. I felt she was definitely way beyond my reach/out of my league, which ironically made me act more relaxed around her. Being relaxed was a boon to my chances of Veronica ever finding me interesting and attractive. Had I thought for a second I might have a chance with her, I'd have blown it, like I'd done with so many girls, so many times before.
I threw a party at my house post second performance; partly because there was a gal I'd been hankering for for years that I wanted to invite. I thought if I invited her to the party she'd come to the play too. Over the past couple of years she and I had gone out a handful of times, and though nothing had started romantically, I felt strongly there was a very good chance somewhere along the line something might, especially if she came to the play and saw what good job I (thought I) was doing (Lenny in "Of Mice and Men").
I had washed and proudly parked my bait, ah, my motorcycle, close to the stairs that led to my deck so when folks arrived at the party they'd have to pass it on their way to the front door. Clever, eh? I didn't know if the girl I liked liked motorcycles, but by god, I'd been working this chick for a couple years, and if she showed up I wasn't about to let her get away without presenting her with an opportunity to be struck by love over my 1340-cc of proof-positive-piston-powered virility.
She did show up, and three quarters of the way through the party she and a gaggle of gals had gathered on the deck and were looking at, chatting about, and giggling over my motorcycle. I spied em through the sliding glass door and made a beeline.
Long casual exhale: "Great night for a bike ride," I understated to a horrific degree. Revisiting that line shivers my blood because I actually don't like using the word bike when refereeing to a motorcycle, and I don't much like riding at night. But I said it because I was working outside my comfort zone; I thought I had a chance with the girl I'd been working on for two years.
The girl didn't respond. She, along with the three other girls in the gaggle, stood there, stiff, looking frightened.
It wasn't as if I'd have bet the ranch on the girl agreeing to go for a ride that night, but come on, I'd cleaned the house, bought and prepared the food, sent the invitations, I'm the star of the play, the host of the party, one of the few single guys there, and not to mention (To me "not to mention" is one of those things we say and write that makes no sense, because if you are wanting not to mention it, you wouldn't mention it, would you? Same with the road sign, Hidden Drive, if the drive is hidden, you don't need the sign), I'm the owner of a cool as heck motorcycle, all of which I'm sure you'd agree are some serious creeds for girl getting; And what happened when I put it all together in a tidy little package? I whiffed.
Now if you'd been watching all that I've just described in a movie, you'd probably feel sorry for the guy playing the part of me. That is, until the sweet, pretty, unassuming, heroine enters the scene lower screen right and confidently says to the guy who is playing the part of me, "I'll go." If that happened, then you'd feel really good for the guy playing the part of me, wouldn't you? Do you know, that is exactly what happened.
I'd worked two years to get the other girl and hadn't worked at all to get Veronica, which just goes to show you ... well, I actually, I, don't know what it goes to show you, because there are no fail-safe rules or methods when it comes to making a girl like you. What I do know is, the time it took for my ears to register Veronica's, "I'll go," was double the amount of time it took to forget the other girl and the entire two year effort I'd put into impressing her. Ha, I haven't seen her since.
Now for the ride.
To be continued.
Rusty DeWees tours Vermont and Northern New York with his act "The Logger." His column appears weekly. He can be reached at email@example.com. Listen for The Logger, Rusty DeWees, Thursdays at 7:40 on the Big Station, 98.9 WOKO or visit his website at www.thelogger.com