I could write a whole blog on the side conversations I hear at The Grove. A third of the people are on dates. Another third are “reading” or looking for dates. And the last third are the Mexican workers concerned with only one date–their green card expiration date.
I’m sitting there, gnawing on a decrepit peanut butter cookie while reading my books. They had just sold their last chocolate chip cookie when I arrived. I should’ve gotten a slice of carrot cake. I threw the cookie away after just a few bites. And believe me, I never waste food.
I’m certain the couple next to me is on a blind date. It’s so unbearable to sit next to them, I wish I’d brought my iPod. The forced conversation. The awkward silences.
While inching his chair back, the guy asks his date, “Want anything else?”
“The chocolate cake is fine,” she responds. I’m thinking, this is my kind of girl.
Then she kisses him smack on the lips before he gets up. Wow, I’m thinking, that is really forward of her on a first date, especially with the dismal conversation. Maybe she’s really horny, planning on getting some action whether or not she really likes him. I read a statistic today that the majority of women spend more time doing laundry than having sex.
I’m intrigued by how this date is playing out.
I pretend to be engrossed in my book. “I’ve been meaning to pick up that book!” she hollers excitedly at the Freakonomics book I’m holding up. She’s in her mid- to late-thirties. Attractive. Outgoing.
“Yeah, it seems like all my friends have read it. It’s a quick read, too. I’ll be done tonight.”
Her date returns with a couple glasses of wine and a slice of chocolate cake.
I continue to read until the woman says something to her “blind date” that shocks me.
“My family really enjoyed meeting you over Thanksgiving.”
Wuh?! I’m astounded. She goes on to later say something about how they’ve been together for almost a year.
Now, I like to think of myself as smart. Even more so, I like to think of myself as street smart. I have a knack for reading people and situations. They did not seem like a couple that had been together for a year, let alone a full 8-hour day!
I’m so shocked, I stop paying attention to them. I’m annoyed at my failure in interpreting what’s really going on.
I’ve lost track of their conversation, but reconnect when she gushes over my books to this supposed long-term boyfriend of hers. “See what she’s reading? I need to pick that book up. And the other one she has there–In Cold Blood–that is one of my favorites. Oh I just love books. I can spend hours and hours in a bookstore. I wonder what I should read next?…You know, I should’ve been a freelance writer.”
Agh!!! My dream girl is sitting next to me and she’s dating a moron. I’m so tempted to give her my business card, suggesting we start a book club, a family…whatever.
“I’m sure if you go to a bookstore you can find something, ” he sighs. “All you have to do is look.” Those are his exact words. Verbatim. No shit, Sherlock!
“Hmph,” she mutters. “Well it’s good I fell for you before I knew how you felt about books.”
Unbelievable. I guess opposites (complete opposites, polar opposites) do attract.