Naive (aka The Proposition)


“Would you screw me”? That was the question you had asked. We were 14?? and had been playing a relatively mundane and PG version of teenage games in my parents’ basement with Yo and Rae. You took me aside into the bathroom and came out with it. I was oblivious to your crush and too young and dumb to realize what you actually meant.   I was such a good kid, whatever that mean in those days.

I have reflected on this brief moment a handful of times in the last fourteen years, the memory often popping up unannounced and involuntarily. I have never really been sure why it has stuck with me all these years; such a mundane event at its time, yet so vivid in its circulation of my brain and mind. A blink of an eye during the course of a lifetime, nonetheless a pseudo-milestone of teenage proportions.

I don’t remember how it was that we came to hang out that summer. Yo and I had been friends for a couple of years, although you and I – like of most of the kids in the neighbourhood, including Rae – had known each other since elementary school, though we were never super close. I remember there being a “gathering” in front of and near your house, though where that fell in the overall timeline of events, remains hazy to me. I feel like that was after.

You were definitely “aggressively romantic” in your pursuit of me, if one can even call it that. Like that time that four of us ran through the grassy alleys of Victoria Drive, you running towards me from afar, wanting me to embrace you and reenact a scene from a 1950s love story. Instead I merely caught you softly. You told what you wanted and we tried again, though the moment was forever wasted. This is how naive I was then. I suppose I still am in a lot of ways.

I’m not sure how aware the others were; you weren’t hiding your feelings but it’s not like Y&R paid much attention to whatever antics or shenanigans you were up to. I say you, because I just tended to go along with whatever, as is my nature. The sap that I was, and still am in a lot of ways.

“Would you screw me?”… We are standing in the dimly bathroom; you had locked the door behind you. Y&R were still in the spare bedroom on the other side of the door, where the majority of the night’s action had taken place. You were straight with me and weren’t messing around.

Who knows what would have happened had I yes? Part of me likes to imagine that you would have pounced on my right then and there. It would made some sense, and it would have been over and done with. All I had ever done up until that point was some light French kissing, so guaranteed I would have been terrible. But then again so are most people at that age Knowing you however, if I had said yes, you probably would have planned a whole night around, finishing with an anticlimactic and clumsy thirty seconds.

I probably should have said yes, not because I was anywhere near ready or wanted it (didn’t know what to think on that issue), but rather because it would have meant validation. Validation that someone liked you for you and wasn’t just playing games, validation that I did in fact, find you attractive. Validation that you were worth it.

Who knows what would have happened had I yes? Would it have been a one-and-done, fuck-and-run kind of deal? Would have entered into a friends-with-benefits type of arrangement? – not that either of us knew what that meant. Could we have even become a couple. The truth is we’ll never know.

We’ll never know because I didn’t say yes. I turned you down, something along the lines of “at this point, no, but maybe in the future we’ll how it goes”. How lame was that? We’ll never know because after night summer faded and we all went on with our lives; back to school, back to our friend groups, back to “real life”. I don’t even think we had a class together after that, though we were still aware of each presence. You switched schools after that year, even though you still lived in the same house and that was that. I even was still casual friends with Yo after that, though that too quickly dissipated. We all  simply moved on.

It would be another six years before the big event actually happened to me. Late, but prepared I suppose. I do not what happened with you and it would wrong to speculate. But I do wonder what would have happened if…. If I had said yes…

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