Let us drift on an ocean of ideas and call it conversation
Let’s share an AHA! moment and mistake it for compatibility
Let us feel the camaraderie of fellow voyagers and call it love
I will if you will. Shall we call it a date?
Tag Archives: Flirting
“I miss the good old days when portrait painting was the only form of visual reproduction. But of course, you are too young to remember that.”
I read the words in a tiny glass screen in the palm of my hand. Not a muscle moved, not even an eyelash flicker.
You don’t show emotion, reading an SMS. And yet, those stark words behind a scratched window, no bigger than your palm, tie you to another person in another frame, another time. How can you not respond?
I wonder how to say it’s not déjà vu if you remind me of an emotion, not a place. And it’s not who you remind me of or when or even why.
It is that you do
and that connects you
that you never were at,
It connects you to me.
I didn’t remember what it was like to feel this way and you reminded me. And all those memories that lined up behind the me that you know, of the me that you never did? How young am I if I can remember all that you don’t even see? Time is marked by the trails it left and not by how quickly it passed. And what else is nostalgia, but tracking those trails, with the imagination following them back as far as they go?
And all of that can be said in one look but not an SMS. I put down my cup and type,
“I have memories, alright. Sepia-toned ones.”
And underneath my words, a swirl of cream turns, speckled with tiny spots of coffee.
“And this is Kunal.”
“Are you on Twitter?”
“Yes, I’m @c00nal.”
“I don’t think I FOLLOW you.”
“I don’t follow you either.”
Kunal frowns as he turns to the Hot Dog stand.
“I think I hurt his ego a bit.”
“You just met!”
“Social boo-boo, telling someone you don’t follow them on Twitter.”
“What rubbish, nobody cares about these things.”
“Some people do. Maybe he’s one of them. Shit, I blew it.”
“Shh, he’s back. Ice-creams? Isn’t that too…I don’t know…something?”
“Ice-cream is cool.”
“Or maybe it’s c00nal.”
“No, this is c00nal.”
He says, holding out a spoon with a bit of ice-cream stuck to it. It’s green, not an appealing shade for food, she thinks.
“Ooh, you got her an ice-cream, c00nal?”
“A bite-sized version.”
“A twitterized ice-cream.”
She replies, smiling back as she takes the spoon.
* Also posted at Social Mantra.
Lunch at the cafe, alone. At long last. My thoughts and I dine together.
The host wants me to sit in any one of the dingy corners and ignore the brighter, roomier booths in the center. I make a wry face so he concedes and lets me take the bright corner. The cafe isn’t even crowded after all.
They enter some five minutes after I’ve settled down, by which time I’ve placed my order and am sipping my wine. I notice him first. All I see is the back of their heads and a profile view in a flash.
He looks familiar…for a vague instant. In that not so nice way that makes you glad you spotted the person first and hope they don’t notice you back. He probably looks a little like the friend of someone I want to forget. That’s still too close for comfort but not so close that I want to scat. She’s totally unfamiliar in a familiar way. That is to say, she’s the typical nice-looking, a tad too ‘healthy’ to be one of the stick-insect-model-types. An Indian woman. A pretty Indian woman.
What strikes me is their clothes. Ah, his clothes. He’s wearing a mildly striped full-sleeved shirt with cotton trousers. It’s not quite formal enough to be workwear but it seems a little too dressy for Saturday. Unless, ah of course. One of those dates that he feels he must dress up a bit for. Still dude, it’s just nearing 2pm, that shirt is Saturday evening territory we’re meandering into.
For awhile I wonder what it would like if I were his ex- and he were to spot me. The carefully coiffed look would probably shatter in an instant. He’s really trying very hard to be on his best behaviour and impress the girl with him. And what if he were to bump into someone he didn’t treat that good, who knew him well…only too well…underneath that polish.
But he’s nervous. His hands aren’t quite shaking but there’s that high-strung air of tension surrounding his being and I can feel it sitting 30 feet away. Like when she takes a call on her cell, he turns his face away in an attempt to appear polite and respect her privacy. But he’s fidgety and the minute she hangs up, I can almost see him counting his breaths before he can turn around and resume conversation.
His smiles and laughter seem a little too eager. Not quite offensive but just like he’s relieved to be able to laugh off some of the tension. She, on the other hand, is natural. Smiling just enough, movements easy. Almost. Her gaze wanders ever so slightly in each direction. Sizing up. The surroundings, the people around, the arena. She’s playing and she’s just taking stock of the field.
That taken care of, my attention returns to him. It’s not that she’s uninteresting, she’s just ‘figured out’. Besides his nervousness draws me again. And I wonder what makes him so nervous. He obviously wants her to like him. Why?
Is it because he likes her as much? What does he want from her? Reciprocation of affection? A night or a weekend in bed? Respect? A month or so as trophy girlfriend? Awe and devotion?
My chicken satay is here and my glass needs a refill. I set to devouring my solitary, perfect lunch and put aside the messy questions of people for awhile. When I look up again, their orders have arrived and they’re waiting for the waiter to finish serving. Then they wish each other Bon Appetit and start eating. I walk out, content with a good meal and some foodside realtime entertainment.
What makes a good first date?
- Zero awkwardness
- Lots of laughter
- Meaningful conversations (even if they go across different time-zones!)
- Smiling – sweet smiles, secret smiles, silly smiles, wicked smiles, shared smiles, smiley smiles
What makes a great first date?
Hoping there’ll be another.
I got it. 🙂
He looks at her from the corner of his eye
Thinking she won’t notice
Secretly hoping she will
So secret, he won’t even admit to himself
She feels his look
Like sunlight, warm on her cheeks
Her eyes stay downcast
Shielded from his blinding gaze
Warmed nevertheless by its intensity
Then it starts to rain.
The thrill of her chase used to be about impossible dreams in the future
And wrestling them into submission
Now that nothing’s impossible anymore,
She finds herself thinking often of the past
Conjuring visions of how life would’ve been, if it hadn’t gone the other way
Nothing spells unachievable
Like what may have been…and wasn’t.
I suffer from convenient extreme short term memory loss.
So do I. I also plead guilty to frequent moodiness and an unpredictable temperament.
You know that’s allowed only once a month! You’re taking advantage of being the fairer sex.
Nonsense. My mind is a super-highway of hormones that get into traffic bottlenecks every month. And I’m almost never, if ever, fair.
And its words like that which turn a straight man gay.
You just like it easy, don’t you?
Sweetie, don’t confuse a challenge with the impossible.
It isn’t a challenge if you know the outcome, beforehand.
Then what is it?
Phew, I see someone with experience in this field. That much?
Someone once accused me of using him as “a mental penis for my intellectual masturbation”. There is a basic flaw in that statement which I won’t point out, at the moment. But there may be a shard of truth in his words. In that case, yup, definitely experienced.