Wednesday, February 06, 2002

Every Day is Valentines Day for Doug and Chris

I have never been a big fan of Valentine's Day.

Aside from elementary school where the giving of valentines to classmates was mandatory, I never got much of anything from guys. My dad always bought me and my sister something, and I thought that was cute... but you get to a certain age and you really want someone to love you who isn't your daddy.

A boy, in my case.

When I was in elementary school there was this kid named Sean who used to call me on the phone and read me poetry. He had blonde hair and wore glasses, and was so sweet. I was all giddy about him. My mom said he called me all the time. This had to be in like third grade or something. Nothing ever came out of that relationship and eventually I lost track of him.

In fourth grade I harbored a long simmering crush on a boy named Robert and maintained it for well over a year... but in fifth grade a girl named Randi hooked up with him and they fell madly in mutual love. They were both in my class and they made me ill. I hated her guts, and one day dared her to put raisins up her nose in the cafeteria. She put up five and only managed to get three out. The other two were embedded in her sinus cavity.

She went to the nurse, I got my sweet dried-fruity revenge on her boy stealing ass. Raisins up your nose. Pfth. Who does that in fifth grade.

I have no idea where she ever ended up... she is in my yearbook, she graduated with me... but I don't ever remember speaking to her after sixth grade.

I also remember being insanely in love with a kid who moved into our school somewhere in maybe fourth grade?? not sure the year. His name was Mark, and he had brown hair and brown eyes, and his mom brought him to his first day. The teacher introduced him to the class, and I recall him wearing a brown corduroy jacket and a striped shirt, and he had a lunchbox in his hands as he hid slightly behind his mom.

Oh my God. He is SO cute.

I was insane about him, while also being slightly insane about Robert, but feeling that kind of ebb and flow the way elementary school romance goes.

In sixth grade I was outside at recess, which for me meant sitting on a steel bench reading a book while the other kids played. I hated going down to the playground because you had to climb back up a big hill and that was no fun (I wonder where my daughter gets her laziness from, don't I?) and Mark came and sat down next to me on the bench.

He sat there very quietly for a long time, and then said "Can I ask you something?" I responded that he could, and I can still see him looking at me out of the corner of his eye, his hands in his jacket pockets, his head tilted sideways... "I have a feeling you like me. Is that true?"

!!! Oh my God! He's talking to me about me liking him! What do I do!!!

I ran away screaming.

No lie, screaming.

He never approached me again, and I kick myself to this day. I think he liked me too at the time, but me being a scared shitless little moron prevented me from even speaking to him.

The old mad crush from afar would have to suffice. I remember being at Jenssie's house a bunch of times when she encouraged me to call him, talk to him. She even dialed the phone for me.

His mom would answer and I would ask for him .... she'd get him, and when I'd hear his voice I would just panic and a noise would eek out of my throat as I dropped the phone onto the hook. Oh my God. I'm an idiot. What is wrong with me...???

I so regret not being the kind of girl who would just TALK to people then. He was so sweet. And so many other people were so sweet and kind to me, and I either wouldn't talk or I'd be a wiseass and drive them off.

I wonder where Mark is today.

In high school I started to get over that whole being a social retard problem and got two sort of boyfriends in 11th grade. One of them lived in another school district, and I met him through the youth group. The other was a year ahead of me and hooked up with me just so he'd have someone to mess around with while the true girl of his dreams wouldn't date him. I remember her coming up to me at a party during senior year telling me that "the dude you dig really digs me, and not you." And I didn't speak to him or her after that.

And then during the summer after my senior year I met a kid who was going to be a sophomore, but he was older than a sophomore due to starting school late (birthday cut off, just like Geoff will face when he goes to school). I dated him for the summer. He was interesting... and had a drinking problem at age 16, which kind of distressed me and I tried my best when I was with him to have him not drink. I won't go further into detail about that, but suffice to say when I left for college he didn't want to speak to me anymore. I have no idea what ever became of him. Doug and I ran into him when we were dating, and we were home at my parents for a weekend. He looked marvelous, had shot up another five inches in height and totally bulked out (he was a skinny little wiry wild kid when I dated him. Damn. Pretty hot)... and that was kind of odd. He seemed well, had just gotten a new pick up truck and was very proud of it. Other than that, he's gone off the radar screen. Haven't seen him since.

I dated a guy named Steve for a year and a half in college, totally madly in love with him. He kept dumping me and I kept weaseling my way back together with him. Finally it was totally over and I was depressed for an incredibly long time. I tried dating a guy named Ryan who I thought liked me but he really liked four other girls and was messing around with all of us until he finally settled on leaving college. Jackass.

Then I met Doug.

My buddy Clayton hooked us up. There's a whole great big story about how he did that. I won't get into it here. Suffice it to say that we started officially dating in April of 1987, broke up for the summer, got back together at the end of that summer and have been together since.

Valentine's Day Weekend 1988 we were sitting on the floor of his dorm hall reading and his mother called for us. She talked to him and to me for a while, and got back on the phone with him. She asked what we were doing for Valentine's Day, and he told her we had no plans. She was surprised... "But it's Valentine's Day."

"Every day is Valentine's Day for Doug and Chris," he answered. I thought that was funny. Seeing that it hadn't been a big holiday for me, that I never was a mushy romantic chick, this was nice to hear him say. Admitting up front that every day should be a valentine's like day, a day of love... my expectations were set low.

I did get a dozen roses from him. Long Stem. He was upset with me that I trimmed the stems down so they fit in the vase. But I had no choice. They were lovely, and he delivered them to me in a box. I appreciated them, but told him I'd much rather have roses any other day of the year for no reason... and I meant that. Once in a while I get them. In August, or June... December. No reason other than they were there, and there is no price gouging. We are so damn cheap.

Valentine's Day since then has always been mellow. Restaurants are too crowded with people trying to over do it... so we order a pizza and hang with the kids. It's refreshing. I love my husband and especially love that he doesn't feel the need to impress me once in a while with an overt display.

The best Valentine's Day for me this year would be if we made a trip to home depot and got stuff to hang a new ceiling. That'd make it all worth the love. And worth not being all mushy and romantic all the time... don't you think?

Just Call Me Peggy Hill... Substitute Teacher Extrordinaire
In order for me to substitute teach in Massachusetts, I have to have a negative TB result... so I went and got the needling done. I got up and got Geoff ready for Doug to take to school, had some coffee and schlepped myself to the doctor for the TB test this morning. I have to go back in 2 days to have it read. Hell it was free. Why not? Everyone should get one. TB is a lot more prevalent than people think anyway.

I still have to get my college transcripts in order to complete the application process for Jessica's district, so I must hop on that now. Doug brought me an application for subbing in his district, so I'm filling that out.

I also have to call the unemployment office to find out if I am eligible to collect unemployment if I am substitute teaching. I am sure there will be days I don't get called. So will I be eligible to collect unemployment on those days or am I screwed. Oh the decisions and choices. I can't believe I'm thinking about doing this. What if they put me in a Math class. I failed all my math classes.

Okay. I have some dishes and cleaning to do. I spent the better part of two hours on the phone with Aaron shooting the shit. He has no classes today (he's in college in Maine, so he's housecleaning and bored) so I'm always a good crutch to use when you don't want to do anything else. I'm Bored. I'm calling Chris! I also have to go to the market and get toppings or the pizza dough I have. It's all about the love... good pizza toppings say I love you more than roses or chocolates... right?

Thanks for your time. And I wish everyone an Everyday Valentines Day, like it is everyday for Doug and me.

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