Sep 29, 2010

Single White Female

During my first year at University, I lived with a menagerie of unique people but the cherry on top of the crazy cake was a sad and strange girl by the name of Candice. When we first met her, it was even apparent from her posture and awkward body language that she was far away from her comfort zone. It is true that we were all experiencing a new chapter in our lives as we begun our first couple days of University, but with Candice, it was an entirely new world. She didn’t really respond to normal social graces like the rest of us, and by the end of the first week, we jokingly came to the conclusion that she must have either had absolutely no friends in high school or she was, in fact, born yesterday.

I know that appearances are not important, but I feel I should at least give a brief description in order to paint a virtual picture of this girl. She had a body like none I had seen before; if I were to do an elementary outline of her, it would resemble a square skillet with a handle. Her legs were average, along with her arse but then from nowhere the upper part of her body transformed into a giant block – the same width and height. It was as if her jeans would have been a size 8/10 and her tops were a 16/18 – with no waist whatsoever. Her head was then positioned directly on top of this block of a torso with no neck either. Although she was naturally a blonde (I think), she had further bleached her hair to the point that it was scorched into a frizzy straw-like mop. Finally, she suffered from Rosacea that created almost perfect blotches on her cheeks that made her look like a permanently painted marionette – and this only worsened when she got embarrassed or upset.

When she arrived, it was like she had done research on what a “University student” should have or should do – maybe she watched a combination of Saved By The Bell: The College Years and Sex and the City – who knows. The first thing she did was to take out a Pink Floyd poster and put in on the wall in the common room. When we were done with all our different tastes, it was as if the walls were covered in a mishmash of pop culture vomit, so the Pink Floyd poster fit in just fine. She also broke out her “grannie smokes” or “bitch sticks” (super light and slim cigarettes) and awkwardly lit one; it was as if it was the first one she’d ever had. When the coffee had brewed, she added at least 3 heaping spoons of sugar (I lost count after 3) and milk.

Now, most of this might not seem too unusual, except shortly after, it all began to change. It had been about a month when a group of us were hanging out in the common area, smoking and listening to the radio. “Money” came on and one of the guys turned to Candice and mentioned, “Hey, you must love this song!”

She looked confused and replied, “Why?”

He then equally looked confused and answered, “Um... because it’s Pink Floyd? Aren’t they your favourite band?”

Her red blotches quickly erupted as she got flustered, “Oh, ya, r-right... of course.” I could tell right away that she had no fucking clue that it was a Pink Floyd song... the most FAMOUS one as well. I don’t know shit about that band, and even I knew that song. We eventually learned that she bought the poster because of some guy that worked with her dad had a Pink Floyd tattoo – and then after more digging, we learned that he was like FORTY and also married. Eww. Weird.

We were only able to get this information because she had taken a shine to one of our other housemates – to put it lightly – and had begun to reveal herself in all her glorious weirdness. This other housemate was very bubbly, pretty and friendly with everyone and I think she was the first person that ever showed Candice any form of comradery in her life. She began to follow Andrea around like a little puppy dog. She switched to the same brand of strong cigarettes as her, and started drinking her coffee black – just like Andrea. Now, if you have ever had coffee, you will know that switching from triple sugar and milk to black is HUGE; I shudder at the thought.

Andrea wasn’t without her own issues, and she pretty much ate nothing but microwave popcorn – so Candice also changed her diet... during the day, anyway. At night, usually after Andrea had gone to bed, she would binge eat as if she was a starving, savage animal. It was disturbing to watch – especially when she would actually lick the leftover chicken fat right off her plate! She never even noticed us or cared that we stared at her in horror while she engaged in one of these scoff n’ snort fests.

She also dyed her parched hair a darker golden blonde... surprise... to be more like Andrea’s colour. It then turned up a further degree of creepiness when she openly started to develop a crush on the same guy as Andrea – as if she and Andrea fused into one person. The transformation happened faster than we could say “Single White Female”!

By the Christmas break, it was obvious that Andrea had a serious stalker issue on her hands, but she was too nice to do anything about it. Sometimes, we often thought that she actually enjoyed having a “pet” – a certifiable pet, but a pet none the less. Candice started to become openly rude with the rest of us. We gathered it was because we were also friends with Andrea – and the time that we spent with her interfered with her special one-on-one time where she could have Andrea all to herself.

One afternoon, she had brought home 3 targets. Apparently, she had gone to the gun range with her father and those targets were her results. Um... so... what do you think she did with them? She friggin’ hung them over her friggin’ bed! We joked that when her door was closed, she put one of our faces on each of the 3 targets – but in reality we were getting nervous. For the first time that year, we started to lock our bedroom doors at night. If we ever wanted to go out for drinks with Andrea, we would plan to leave separately and meet up in the parking lot – so she wouldn’t know that we were going together – and Andrea would feed her some bullshit about having to run errands so she wouldn’t want to go with her. It was immature of us, but since we were all afraid of confronting her (especially since she had a gun club membership), we just did what was easiest.

We danced around her obsession for the remainder of the year and soon exams distracted us with more important things. We kept locking our doors at night and definitely looked forward to getting away from her – but not as much as Andrea was, I’m sure of it. Oddly enough, Candice was from the same small town as that fucked up guy that always came over to our place to take a shit! Coincidence? I’m thinking a big fat NO! (See No Coffee? No Cigarettes? No Entry!)

Sep 27, 2010

My Boyfriend Loves My Wobbly Bits

Learning to Embrace Your Imperfections
By CakieBelle

Like Bridget Jones, I have wobbly bits, and I have spent the best part of my twenty something years on this earth trying to keep these offensive squishy areas out of sight. Even as a little girl at ballet class and swimming lessons I made a conscious effort to suck my tummy in and stick to dark corners where ever possible, so when I first met my boyfriend, R, I was determined to keep my wobbly bits firmly under wraps. Like Mark Darcy, R has always insisted that he has a very high regard for my wobbly bits, but for the first few years of our relationship I was convinced that he was either lying or totally mad.

When you switch on the television or flick through a magazine there isn’t usually a great deal of diversity in the types of beauty represented. Sadly, somewhere along the way, we as a society have gotten into the mindset that there is really only one look that can be considered attractive: thin, with tanned skin, big boobs, wide eyes, a small button nose and full lips. Cute little quirks that break this mould are seen as flaws and far too often “fixed” – dieted away, covered with makeup or changed with plastic surgery.

Although we often conform to the notion that we have to look a set (unrealistic) way to be attractive, I believe deep down, we all know this isn’t true. In our heart of hearts we understand that there are infinite forms of beauty. Think of your very best friend, your sister, or your mum. She probably isn’t physically perfect – she might have some wobbly bits, stretch marks or freckles, a bump on her nose, knobbly knees, crooked teeth or all of the above - but do you think she’s unattractive? Do you find her ugly? Do you think she needs to change? Of course you don’t. You think she’s beautiful. You find those imperfections endearing and gorgeous – they are part of what makes her, her.

Similarly, we love celebrities who haven’t succumbed to the surgeon’s scalpel, and who have instead embraced the features that set them apart from the cookie-cutter beauty favoured in Hollywood. Sarah Jessica Parker’s nose, the gap in Anna Paquin’s teeth, Lucy Liu’s Freckles – we love these qualities because they make their owners different. Instead of trying to correct their “flaws”, Parker, Paquin and Liu have embraced their quirks as trademarks and we salute them for that, but for some reason we can’t do the same for ourselves. We think, on her it’s unique, it’s cute, it’s special, but on me it’s wierd, it’s flawed, it’s ugly.

It’s time for this negative self talk to stop. It’s time we learned not only to accept our “flaws” but to celebrate them. Those wobbly bits are a symbol of all the wonderful meals you have shared with loved ones. That scar is a memento of your past. Those freckles are a token of happy hours spent in the sunshine. That squishy tummy is symbolic of the life you created when you carried a child. That nose is a legacy of your heritage. Those laugh lines represent a life-time of smiles. These are not flaws – they are the marks of a life well-lived. They make you unique, they tell your story and they are beautiful.

With time, I grew more comfortable in myself around my boyfriend and confident that, no matter what flaws were hidden under my clothes, he wouldn’t run screaming for the hills. My determination to hide the parts of myself that I was self conscious about gradually softened and I realised the only person in our relationship who actually had a problem with my wobbly bits, was me. Because it’s ok to have wobbly bits. Infact, it’s unusual for a woman not to. I will never be six foot tall, athletic and tanned, but this doesn’t make me unattractive, undesirable or unworthy – this just makes me, me. Slowly but surely I’m learning to love what my mama gave me and I’m making the most of my best assets. I’m accepting the way that I am, I’m rejoicing in the knowledge that there is more than one type of “beautiful” and I’m dancing about the lounge room in my undies – wobbly bits and all.

Kisses and Hugs,

Sep 24, 2010

The Visitation

Since I was old enough to go on my own, I had been visiting my father’s grave once a year, on the anniversary of his death. When I was overseas, of course I wasn’t able to go – so I went to church instead. I pretty much never went to church unless my mother made me go, so it was a weird experience to begin with. It was the 17th anniversary of his death; he died when he was 24 from a heart attack, and my mother was pregnant with me. I was born 41 days later... on his birthday (which is why I don’t visit him on his birthday – it would be a bit of a downer for me). It’s not that I wish I wasn’t born on the same day, on the contrary, I feel like it is something that will always connect me to him and even though I never got to meet him, it’s like our special ‘thing’ that we share.

When I walked into the local church there was a visitation going on – of course. There’s nothing quite like staring at a casket of a dead guy to take my mind off of my deceased father. I knelt in the back pew, buried my head between my arms and cried as if I was mourning his death for the first time in my life. I don’t think I had ever been that affected by my unique situation before; perhaps it was a whole bunch of issues that I had been dealing with and this day served as the icing on my hormonally-injected cake.

I had been there for about 10 minutes and an elderly woman sat down beside me and put her warm hand on my back.

‘Did you know him well?’ she asked. Her eyes were tired, but kind and welcoming. I felt bad that I didn’t even know the guy in the coffin, but I didn’t lie to her – I didn’t see any point. She smiled and then I told her my entire story. I don’t know what enticed me to pour my heart out to this complete stranger, but somehow it made me feel a lot better. I felt like I had known this woman my entire life – like a long-lost grandmother, yet I didn’t even know her name.

We talked for a long time and took some breaks where she would pray and I would cry some more. I felt so much better – like a physical weight had been lifted off my chest. I know that’s a cliché, but that is exactly how it felt. After a while, she got up to leave. She gave me a hug and just as quickly as she had appeared, she was now gone.

I think she was an angel and I think it was my father who sent her to me. I don’t normally believe in that after-school special ‘touched by an angel’ religious crap, but that day, I believed.

Sep 21, 2010

Everyone Loves a Fat Man

So I am aware that this issue has already been addressed by many others, but I want to contribute another perspective to this continuous cookie-cutter production of nauseating ‘fat-man/hot wife’ sitcoms. This idealized marital situation has been clogging our televisions like cholesterol-saturated arteries since The Honeymooners way back in black and white. While these obviously all cater to the male fantasy that you can be a fat, stupid, lazy or obnoxious (or all the above) loser and you will still snag a hot, skinny wife that will worship you (no matter how much you constantly screw up), as per subsequent hit shows like Married with Children, Still Standing, According to Jim, King of Queens, The Simpsons and Family Guy... and I’m sure the list will continue long after I’m gone. There was also Uncle Phil & Auntie Vivian from The Fresh Prince of Bel Air – but I think this was a rare situation where the husband, although still obese, was well educated and had a successful professional career.

People always want to rebut: But what about Roseanne? Exactly – Roseanne; this is more where my true point is heading. Yes, in my opinion, Roseanne was a successful sitcom about the average (or just hovering below average) American family with relatively normal issues and misadventures; mainly to make us feel better about our own situations (ie. It could be worse, we could be the Conners) The weight problems of both Roseanne and Dan were of course present, but were not at the core of the show; they just were who they were.

Mike & Molly (CBS)
And last night was the premiere of Mike & Molly – brought to us by the same producers as 2½ Men and Big Bang Theory – awesome – couldn’t wait. I was thinking it would be a fantastic combination of the ‘real American’ grass roots of Roseanne mingled with the witty banter of Men & Theory... and then the first 5 minutes happened. Mike and Molly meet at an Over-Eaters Anonymous meeting... seriously? How disappointing. Within the first moments, it was apparent that this series will be centered not on the concept of these two people as interesting individuals, but rather as 2 self-deprecating fat people that have predictable fat people issues and are going to fall in love because of course, the 2 fat people should get together. I gagged on the big fat cliché! Roseanne was never about that! Shame on you Roberts & Lorre – I expected more from you two.

The other reason I tuned in was because I really enjoyed Melissa McCarthy in Gilmore Girls and was looking forward to her in this new show. It is a shame that although over-weight men seem to have no problems crossing the weight threshold with their potential mates, larger women are type-cast to keep to their side by either being the cute, but chronic back-seater supporting actress to their best friend (who is always the skinny and gorgeous heroine of the show), or they get paired up with equally large partners. This also happened to McCarthy in Gilmore Girls, as did it unfold with Lesley Boone as another Molly on the sitcom Ed – falling for the older, chubby and awkward fireman near the end of the series.

Sara Rue
And lastly, there is no way you could convince me that the title of the series Less Than Perfect didn’t have direct implications to the fact that the then-overweight Sara Rue was cast as the main character. Now that she’s dropped 50 pounds, I’m sure she’ll be making a b-line to the female lead auditions that are casting along side the latest heart throbs – since now she actually qualifies for those roles. The tragedy is that she should have been just as eligible for those leads with her extra 50, as she was beautiful either way, but who are we kidding, it's Hollywood.

There appears to be only 2 combinations allowed on television: fat man with a skinny wife; or fat man with fat wife. The third scenario would be more shocking as a same sex kiss during prime time! I would love to see a show created where the woman is at least a size 12 (or more), and she’s got a handsome, fit and intelligent husband – but hey, where’s the humour in that, right?

Sep 20, 2010

Giraffe Man

Most of my relationships began with me pursuing the guy; it was rarely the other way around for some strange reason or another. A few times I would really have loved if it was them chasing me. When I had found the right moment to pour my heart out and reveal my true feelings, the result had one of three results: 1. He turned me down flat out, stating that we were much better off as friends; 2. We would start a ‘causal’ relationship that began with sex and ended with bruised egos; 3. (The fantasy scenario) He reciprocated my feelings and we partook in a wonderful and mutually respectful relationship. Ya, right!

During the course of a short-lived relationship with some idiot guy (that begun with a version of scenario #2), I had come to know his housemates very well. The one had a girlfriend and we had hit it off right away, which helped since we both spent a lot of time at that house.

The other guys would torment him all the time by telling blasphemous jokes and he would get so angry and usually storm off to his room. He also was adamantly against drinking, smoking, drugs and pre-marital sex – all of which the rest of us did on a regular basis. I’m sure he probably thought he was living in Sodom & Gomorrah at times – we were all disgusting SINNERS! Because of this, it was even more of a shock when his housemate’s girlfriend took me aside one night to give me a ‘heads up’ for what was about to happen.

“Jeff told me that he loves you and he’s going to tell you... soon!” She paused to witness my initial facial contortions upon hearing this news, and then continued, “Ya, I know! I tried to dissuade him, seriously, I tried, but he is convinced that you two belong together.”

Ah crap. Of all the men that I had chased over the years (and there were a lot), this is the one guy that decided to chase me... giraffe man! I responded to this news in utter confusion, “But, why? There is the obvious fact that I am with his housemate... kind of... and he knows I sleep with him; I thought he was against sex! What about the booze, cigarettes and weed? What the hell does he actually see in me when 80% of my lifestyle he fervently disagrees with?! What a weirdo!”

“I know. I know. He thinks that you will give all that up for him – I’m not sure which delusion he is living in. I think he is going to tell you tomorrow, so at least I am giving you some advance warning. I couldn’t even imagine what you would do if he told you without me breaking the news ahead of time.” No shit! I honestly didn’t know either and was thankful that she told me.

That night quickly came and after a couple rounds of joints, we all were going to go out for some food. Jeff puffed his chest out a bit, held me back and proclaimed to everyone, “You guys go ahead! Rachel and I have some important things to discuss.” O god... is he serious? My friend looked at me with pity-filled eyes as they left without me.

He sat me down on the couch and sat in a chair across from me that was much too short for his long legs; I was stoned off my rocker and was trying to keep a straight face with every ounce of self-control that I had left.

He looked me straight into my blood-shot eyes and told me that he loved me, very truly and very deeply. He said he was willing to look past all my ‘poor choices’ if I would agree to be with him and change my ways from that point onward. Apparently, if I loved him as much as he thought I did, I would easily change for him and we would abstain until our wedding night. YIKES! I was pretty freaked out with the intensity and resolve he had in his plans, all the way to having thought about our wedding. We weren’t even together and I felt like it was going to be one the hardest ‘break-ups’ that I would ever have to initiate.

Maybe I needed to experience that to see how awkward it was for the other person receiving the news, although I am sure I was only about 10% crazy when I performed my various declarations; Jeff was off the charts, 100% and beyond. Even if I had imagined wedding dresses with some of my past crushes, I NEVER would have told them, not ever! JESUS! Some craziness must be kept in your head!

I gave him the standard version of the “friendship” speech that I had come to know all too well, although I didn’t even believe that load of crap. After he revealed his extreme thoughts to me, I wanted to keep my distance from him for a while. Luckily, I was pretty much done with his housemate as well, so it worked out for the best to make a clean break with the guys in that house.

Sep 16, 2010

Pregnant Children: An Epidemic?

So I was asked to contribute advice on a fairly successful social community website and I’ve run into my first issue that has actually caused me to lose sleep over it. I would call it ‘teen pregnancy’ but it’s not even that – since these CHILDREN are barely 13; I would consider a ‘real’ teen pregnancy from a girl that was 16-18 years old. It’s not like it is an isolated issue either – one after another, after another; and they are all posting questions and proud statements such as: “I’m keepin it, cuz I dunnie wants an aborchin” Are you fucking for real? Apparently, they are real... and there are a lot of them!

This consumes me with rage not only due to the ill-informed and pure ignorance of these CHILDREN – but where are their god damn parents in all of this? I’ll tell you where... they themselves are barely 30 and are allowing their children to have sex under their roof and condone their actions! These so-called parents should be brought up on charges for allowing this – but they seem to be no smarter than the 13 year old. It is like they are fuelling a vicious cyclone of dumb breeding, which apparently comes full circle every 13-16 years. When it was once deemed almost impossible to live to be a great-great grandmother, now it’s achievable by the time you’re 60! I would have originally thought that it was based loosely on class, but in these times everyone has access to information and fairly regulated schooling (in Western countries, anyway). It seems to be spreading like a virus – lower, middle and upper class – a lot thanks to teen pregnancy glorification in the media, as per Jamie Lynn Spears and Bristol Palin – but 1 serious factor is ignored – those girls have MONEY.

So, everyone wants to have a baby – like it’s all about funky coloured strollers and cute onezies that say ‘If you think I’m cute, you should see my Mommy”. Why are they all in such a desperate rush to grow up? Whatever happened to wearing too much make-up or trying on your mother’s high heels to feel older? These girls are creating human beings and simultaneously posting questions online like:

“Does it hurt when you have a baby?”

“I only did it once in a KFC bathroom, so why am I pregnant?”

“How quickly can I lose the weight I gained cuz I don’t want my boyfriend to think I’m fat and dump me?”

You want my advice? Here it is: If you are asking questions like these, YOU SHOULD NOT BE HAVING SEX AND DEFINITELY SHOULD NOT HAVE A BABY. I’m not saying I was an angel at 13; I was doing many things with boys that I was far too young to really understand, but I still knew that there was no way in fuck that I was going to get myself pregnant!

Apart from those stupid girls that don’t even know why or how they got pregnant (which perhaps 40 years ago would be acceptable, but frankly there is no excuse in today’s society), it’s also the girls that PURPOSELY go and do it as well. I really think that in situations like these that the world truly is going mad.

I might be willing to buy the underlying notion of creating a child for a sad concept of unconditional love, but I don’t even think these girls are emotionally mature enough to formulate a complex idea like that. They simply want a cute little bundle to cart around like a fashion accessory – Hey! Go to fucking Toys R Us and get the Graco 3-in-1 Pram – it sells for only $49.99 and you won’t get ‘fat’. So what if the recommended age is 3-4 years; the girls might argue that they are 10 years too old for it. Well, my rebuttal would be that they’re also 10 years too young (at least) to have a real baby, so what’s the difference? Get the god damn toy, so when they find out that it’s not as cool and trendy as they thought it was, they can just throw it out – not so easy with a real one.

Sep 10, 2010

It's A Small World

They always say that it’s a small world and every time I hear that cliché, I get that damn song stuck in my head, but not the Disney version – the version from Family Guy when Stewie was kidnapped and forced to sing and perform it – but I digress.

So, yes – it’s a small world – but I only truly believed that after one of my many long flights to Australia. It had been 2 years since I graduated high school and I was returning for a 6-week visit during my summer holidays. I was excited, even though I do find the flight long and stressful. The scheduled stop-over for this flight was in Hawaii, but I usually never got to leave the airport, so it was no biggie.

We were only meant to have to wait about 45 minutes to 1 hour, but there we all were, waiting in the lobby for 2...3...4 hours and counting. Luckily, it was back in the day when they allowed smoking areas in the airport and there were quite a few of us camped out there, all wondering what the hell was going on.

After I had sucked back about ½ a pack of smokes and the 4th hour had come and passed, I had surpassed boredom and had graduated into curious stranger mode. I wanted to make friends with someone else on the flight so we could bitch and complain together. I am a very social creature by nature, and I needed some form of conversation with someone, anyone; my vocal cords were feeling neglected.

I scanned the room for someone preferably similar to my age and general ‘style’ – sorry, in these instances I had no choice but to judge a book by its cover. Then I found a guy – looked to be a couple years older than myself, but definitely within the same stage of life. He looked like your typical ‘backpacker’; he had scruffy long brown hair, black Doc Marten boots, cargo pants and a Rip Curl T-shirt that was long past its expiry date. I wasn’t attracted to him or anything – he just seemed like the type of guy I would enjoy some small talk with. (Not to mention one of my main reasons for that trip was to visit my then-current love ‘o my life, so I wasn’t scoping the room to pick-up.)

I went over and begun some small chitchat. He luckily responded very positively to my initial introductions and shifted his body around a bit, towards me – which indicated that he was open to further conversation. Horray! He didn’t think I was some weirdo – or maybe he did, but was just as bored as me, who knows. He was Australian and had just been in Quebec for a while and was returning home. Naturally, I continue my third degree of his life and it went something like this:

What part?


Cool, that’s where I lived too... where, more specifically?


Wow. I lived in Mitcham – pretty close.

Yeah they are. What school did you go to?


Really? I have a cousin that went there a few years ago... but I seriously doubt you would know her – I hate when people ask me stupid questions like that.

Yeah, me too – but we’ve got nothing better to do, so try me. What was her name?

Renee Smith.

FUCK OFF! She’s one of my closest mates!


Yes, really! I’m on my way to visit her and a couple other good mates right now.

That was just bizarre! Not only were the odds of that slim to none, but furthered by the fact that out of the 200 people on this flight, I specifically chose to talk to him... solely based on his appearance.

As for our flight? It got delayed for an entire day and they put us all up in a hotel – food and room paid for by the airline. SA-WEET! So, we got a free mini-vacation in Hawaii and I had a cool mate to share it with. We had a great time hanging out together – it was the best stop-over I ever had.

It was even weirder when I finally got to Australia and showed Renee all my photos of me in Hawaii... with her cousin. Whatta trip!

Sep 6, 2010

Tumbling Towards Ecstasy

When I was in high school I was remarkably shy. Despite the theory that opposites attract, I found myself attracted to someone equally as shy as myself, if not more so. As it happened Mr. Shy was also attracted to me. Although we were aware of our mutual attraction, since we were mutually shy, this attraction did not become much more than brief glances and smiles at each other across the classroom. We also shared periodic hallway conversations, which to an onlooker would have appeared to be conversations we were having with our shoes. In fact, upon witnessing such a hallway conversation, one of my friends commented that our attempt to ‘get together’ was pathetic and at the rate we were going it would take weeks before we even kissed, never mind anything else. I simply accepted this teasing and the truth behind it and resigned myself to the fate of a shy person in love with another shy person.

It was the combination of a very large party and even larger amounts of alcohol that broke the spell of shyness between us. I, of course, arrived at the party completely drunk and in my drunken state of mind I had but one thing, or rather person, on my mind: Mr. Shy. I made it my mission to find him, which was going to be no small feat, as I was in the midst of a house crammed so tightly full of people that it was nearly impossible to move. Yet my determination was boundless and upon hearing that Mr. Shy had not only arrived, but was also looking for me, I decided that immovability would not get in my way! The resolved of those who are drunk and horny is almost admirable.

I very slowly squeezed my way through the plethora of people, making my way through each room looking for him. I still clearly remember where we finally found each other: on the main floor of the house, near an entryway to the kitchen and not too far from a set of stairs. I’m not sure though that ‘finding each other’ would be the best way to describe it; it seemed more that we were instead fortuitously pushed together by the throng of people that surrounded us. As most people know, both shy and not, that alcohol tends to wash away all inhibition and shyness away – ‘liquid courage’ I believe is the common term.

When Mr. Shy and I were finally face to face, we were so overcome with desire for each other that we not only skipped the small talk, but we skipped any sort of greeting whatsoever. Weeks of brief conversations with little eye contact and across-the-room glances had been like a fortress surrounding our desire and attraction – and only through the marvels of alcohol this fortress had been breached. Not a word was uttered between us; our mouths were too busy exploring and being explored. Finally, Mr. Shy and I had really and truly connected!

In fact, we were so connected and intensely into each other that we became completely oblivious to our surroundings. It was only when we hit the bottom of the stairs on top of each other, did we realize that we had actually fallen down the stairs, like intertwined tumbleweed! In our passionate and frenzied making out, we hadn’t noticed that the swarm of drunken revellers around us had been gradually nudging us to the top of the stairs, where we eventually tipped over the top step. Although I was drunk, I’m fairly certain that we managed to remain in our state of making out as we tumbled downstairs. And if I also recall correctly, once we had actually completed the fall and realized what had happened, we simply stood up and resumed kissing.

At school the following Monday, I thought that certainly my friend who’d teased me prior would congratulate me, or at least stop teasing me – instead she pointed out the bruises all over my arms and laughed at me for falling down a flight of stairs with Mr. Shy!