2003-11-19 - 4:11 p.m.

9. Kiss you should have let happen but didn’t:

I told you to remember Dan Yugalini way back in question 2. Did you forget him already? Go back and look. We’ll wait. Feel free to hum amongst yourselves while we wait for the ones with short attention spans.

Back? Okay.

I finally met Dan one night when I was playing hookey from work because Bill broke his arm and the painkillers were making me woozy. (If you don’t understand that sentence I have no time to explain it to you now, just take it at face value, or pretend I broke my arm if it helps and we’ll move on.) The now ex but at the time still best friend, who’s name we might as well throw out there so I can stop typing these wordy nameless explanations- Gretchen called and said that Dan had invited her to his house, along with a friend of his to play trivial pursuit. He told her to invite me, Dan and I had talked on the phone a few times, occasionally when I’d call the station looking for her and then later just because we got a kick out of one another. I was an aspiring radio person, he was an aspiring and working radio person, we had lots to talk about. Eventually Dan started asking me whether I thought Gretchen really got it that he just wanted to be friends because he was really not interested in her romantically and didn’t want to be leading her on. I told him, she hears you, she still wants you, but she hears you.

Dan’s friend picked me up, Gretchen and Dan already in the car. We’ll call the friend Fred because I can’t remember his name and when in doubt Fred’s always good. We went back to Dan’s mom’s place in Andover, which was a big beautiful home on a lake. They drank; I didn’t because of the aforementioned painkillers. We were playing with partners, Gretchen and Dan of course and Fred and I. Only Fred and I disagreed about nearly every answer and Gretchen and Dan disagreed on nearly ever answer. Dan and I were 100 % on the same wavelength. There was a huge blow out about snuffalupagus from Sesame Street. During this brawl I went to the bathroom. When I came out there was no one sitting at the table. Gretchen and Fred were sitting, both of them, under a dining room chair and Dan was under the dining room table “pssssst”ing at me. It was enemy encampments and he was showing me the way to camp snuffalumpagus. I went. It was rough being the only one sober, but when Dan and I started to chat quietly, ignoring the drunken chants and cat calls from the enemy it was obviously he was not as drunk as he let on. We had this really intelligent, sweet talk and then he leaned in to kiss me. I said no and looked in Gretchen’s direction. It would be so unfair. He agreed. Riding home that night I was in the front seat with Fred, Dan in the backseat with Gretchen, but beside the seat, hidden in the dark he held my hand.

Two hours after I’d been dropped off, 3AM to be precise, my phone rang. It was Dan and he was upset. “On the way to her house Gretchen told me that you flirt with all of her boyfriends, all of the guy’s she’s interested in. Is that true?”

I was floored. Gretchen had NEVER HAD a boyfriend. She had never expressed an interest in any boy other than John Taylor who at that point anyway I had NEVER even CONSIDERED flirting with (kisses John honey, I love you now, that’s all that matters). I shared this with Dan and he asked if I was really interested in him then, aside from Gretchen. I told him I was, but that we couldn’t do a thing about it. And aside from a few angst ridden phone calls we didn’t.

She turned out to be a very bad friend, especially when men entered the picture, and Dan turned out to be someone I wished I had given a chance.

The end.

You better start sharing your sordid little stories, all of you!

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