There was a knock at the door.
She’s here. Breeeeeeeeathe. She’s here. She.
I check myself in the mirror, making sure I look alright. In case she actually is a she, and not a deadly ninja assassin. Or kidney thief. Or both.
I unlock the door. I focus on putting one foot in front of the other as I descend the stairs. My mind is coursing through a prison lineup of potential paramours standing outside my apartment door.
Step forward when I call your number!
#1 Sixty year old man with a fetish for men resembling Hitler youth.
#2 Ninja assassin with a ninja star aimed at my face.
#3 Ninja assassin kidney thief with a kitana, bag of ice, and sutures at the ready (a ninja assassin kidney thief head of surgery).
#5 Mouth breathing she-wolf dressed in stained, baggy clothing hoping I’m coming down the stairs with a cake.
#6 A girl. Resembling her picture. With a sense of humor and wit similar to that expressed in her messages. A long shot.
Reaching the door at the bottom of the stairs, I breathe deep, and open the door. I walk into the dusty air of the entryway. Shutters cover the large, rectangular window in the outside door. The girl/thing/ninja waits outside. I rub my hands on my thighs, take another deep breath, rub a spot on my lower back to tell my kidneys it’s ok, and twist the doorknob.
Online dating is stupid. Match.com is stupid. OKcupid is stupid.
I’m online dating. I think it’s stupid. Online perusals end in frustration, annoyance, and defeat. Nobody is interesting. Nobody is responding to my messages! Or I’m too defeated to write any messages…or I’m playing a video game as a magical dark elf on Elder Scrolls III: Skyrim – Wherrrrre I can obtain a supplicant by doing little more than slaying a ferocious, fire breathing dragon and giving her my house! So simple! Why can’t life be that easy? Life is confusing at 29.
I’m having another marathon (5 minute) Okcupid study session, and I’m frustrated. I give up! I throw in my cyber towel! I’m going to get a beer! Sitting at the kitchen table, beer in hand, I’m thinking about somebody who caught my eye. I didn’t message her. I thought about it. But feeling defeated, small, and that communication was fruitless, decided to sit with a beer and dwell on the stupidness of online dating. It’s stupid.
She was interesting, though. And super hot. I mean attractive. Maybe I’ll give her another look.
We messaged. We met. We are here.
Our six month anniversary nearing this Tuesday, April 9th, I can safely say I’ve learned a few things. Most importantly, Colleen Lenore Larsen is not, I repeat not, a ninja assassin, although she is a black belt in the kitchen. She is not a geriatric gay man seeking a Norwegian/German beau, but she does love her bedtime, bright colors, and Norwegian/German boyfriends. She’s no ravenous, mythical beast with a disheveled facade, but she pursues her passions with ferocity, and loves her friends voraciously. She’s lovely.
One moment before I go.
Henry Higgins watching Eliza Doolittle walk down the stairs in that dress. The longing of Orpheus for Eurydice. Romeo catching a glimpse of Juliet at the Capulet ball.
New Years Eve, 2012, I entered the party. I saw her immediately, standing in front of the sink flanked by two of her friends. Time slowed. It was as if Professor X (geek alert!) had entered that West Town apartment and frozen time. Everyone else vanished. It was silent. I stood, and studied, and steadied, but my stoicism melted away. I was mush. Putty. The luckiest man. Her beauty, giddiness, and elegance. The way she carried herself, the way she looked at me. The luckiest man. I had the greatest night, and I got to share it with her. The luckiest man.
For you, Colleen Lenore Larsen, Happy Anniversary.
I am the luckiest man.