I’m watching the two of them. They just left my shop. He’s about six foot two inches and lanky. Brown hair and a big smile. She was more my height. Five foot eight. Perfect brown hair and a look that said maybe she’s a bit smarter than him. She paid for the food.
Now they’re just sitting out there at a table. I’m happy for him. She’s incredibly pretty and he’s clearly just delighted by the chance to spend time with her. Just the two of them, enjoying each others comp- wait. Who’s this? Oh no. A second guy is sitting down with them. Black, with dreadlocks and stupid looking armbands that come up around his thumbs.
She doesn’t even look uncomfortable with this turn of events. Of course, he looks devastated. This is a college campus. I know from experience that, between going to classes, doing homework and living four feet away from everyone you know, it’s nearly impossible to get five minutes alone with anyone.
I can see it all in his eyes. Pure happenstance put him in a situation where they could go get something to eat together. Not in a group. Not her and her friend. Just the two of them. It’s the stuff dorm room fairy tales are made of. Then this jerk comes out of nowhere and sits down like he was invited all along. Like he’s not ruining everything.
I wish I could just stop time, go up to him and talk about how much this must suck. That’s all he needs. A couple minutes to gripe about it all. Then he can go back and be friendly and maybe he’ll win her over anyway. As it stands, he’s clearly despondent. That’s not gonna win anybody over.
Here come more friends. God, he just looks more out of it. Something special has become friends hanging out, AKA every other god damned minute of college. It’s kind of a living nightmare.
Maybe that’s the real beauty of growing up. When you’re not around people every waking moment of your life, you know who you really care to be around. You know who you’d prefer your real friends to be.