She used Facebook religiously, like any other girl her age. Wake up, check Facebook. Bored in class, check Facebook. Want to look busy when you’re alone, check Facebook. She rarely received anything other than annoying game invites, messages from her mom, and the occasional tag from one of her sisters. It seemed like Facebook was just a way to see what everyone she went to high school was doing and being envious of how happy they all seemed. Not that she wasn’t happy. She had her dog, Opie, a good GPA, and was in the last semester of her undergraduate career. She was on the path to graduate school, applying to both history and museum studies programs. While she had many flirtations in college and gone out on several dates, meeting a guy had never been a priority. That’s why when his message came, she ignored it at first.
He very rarely got on Facebook. It wasn’t really something he felt obligated to check like she did. He preferred to do other things when he woke up or was bored in class, mostly sports related like checking Deadspin or looking up new shoes he was interested in purchasing. He was in his junior year of college working towards a degree in sports communication, an area he wasn’t even sure he wanted to pursue anymore. He didn’t really go out and party but did enjoy a good beer or glass of whiskey while he read or watched whatever sport was going on at the time. He was content with his life and took things as they came. It was just by chance that he saw her picture on his feed. She was thin, a little too thin, and had long dark hair with large eyes. But she was beautiful, so he decided to send her a message.
He: Hey…you popped up on my feed and I’m just gonna be straight, I think you’re really attractive. I come through Indy whenever I go back to Rensselaer from Bloomington and I was wondering could we meet up sometime?
And I know it’s weird to just message someone you don’t even know out of nowhere but fuck it.
They had gone to high school together. He was a year younger than she was and had actually been in her sister’s grade. He never noticed her then, their paths never really crossed. He barely noticed her in high school, she flew under the radar, or at least she tried. She never noticed him either. She had to look up his profile to remember what he even looked like. She sort of remembered him as a nerdy kid with red hair but that is not what she found. He did have brown hair that could have been confused for red in some light and a big, but handsome, nose. These pictures were not recent however so who knows what he looked like now.
She waited a couple of days before returning his message, but all the while she kept peeking at it. Is this a joke? Was he going to turn out to be a creeper? She had been through this twice now. The first was a old high school friend who she really enjoyed talking too but he wanted something more. When she rejected him, he would still send her messages and even asked a friend for her address so he could mail her gifts. While she was sure other girls might find this romantic, she found it strange and creepy. The second guy was in one of her French classes. He was really cute and had a great body. They went on one date and then he began texting her weird poems he had written about her, ending with one that included him killing himself if she rejected him. She decided to cut of all communication with him but he would still wait outside all of her classes causing many awkward moments. This seemed a little different to those encounters though, maybe she should give him a chance
Why hasn’t she messaged back yet? Did he say something wrong or come off too aggressive? He checked his messages more frequently than he had before. Maybe he had come off a little creepy but he also thought it sounded sweet. It wasn’t until late two days later that he finally got a reply.
She: While this was weird since I don’t really know you but this has actually happened before but the guy turned out to be the creepiest creeper in the world.
She really didn’t know what to say to him. Flirting was not her strong suit so she just typed what came to mind.
He: Yeah that’s not me at all but I totally get why you’d have mixed feelings about it. I never really do this but you just seemed cool and looked like someone I’d get along with
Of course she has had weird guys come on to her before. If he thought she was beautiful, there had to be other guys out there that thought the same. He was just happy she responded at all to him. He really did never do stuff like this before. Randomly messaging a somewhat stranger, who he didn’t even know he was friends with to begin with but her picture just stuck out to him. He had to get to know her more.
The ball was back in her court to respond. She was already an anxious person and it made her anxious to have to be the one to carry on the conversation. She wanted to respond quickly this time to see where the conversation lead but didn’t know where to start. She figured she should probably get to know the guy, he was obviously interested or he wouldn’t have messaged her. What was he interested in though? A friend? A girlfriend? A fuck buddy? She decided to get the conversation as on a nerdy note. She had spent most of her high school career hiding all of her nerdy tendencies and then spent all of her college career bringing her nerdiness out of the closet. If she was going to start a relationship with someone, they had to be okay with it.
She: This is going to seem like a weird question but I’m a little bit of a nerd so I have to ask, Marvel or DC?
She was so nervous when she sent the message that she had to back away from the computer. Would he think she was weird? Would he even know what she was talking about? She had this idea of him being a little bit of nerd in high school but she didn’t know if that was the case or not.
He was surprised when she got the message from her. He used to be really into comic books when he was younger but found himself reading them less and less. She didn’t really seem to be like the type of girl that read comic books but it was a good conversation started.
He: Oh DC for sure. Superman is kind of lame but Batman is so much cooler than everyone else…plus the Justice League would kick the X-Men’s ass any day.
They talked about which superheroes were their favorite, both agreeing that Batman was the coolest and Superman was overrated. Could The Avengers (the comic book originals not the movie) take on The Justice League? They talked about how many of the movies did not do the characters any justice, but they still enjoyed watching them. The conversation lead to other comic books like The Walking Dead. She was hooked on both the comic book and the show. He gave up after season 2, too boring he said, and he had never read the comics though he heard they were good. She gushed about all of the characters and how they were different from the show.
The conversation made a slight turn to sports. He loved sports, always had, always will. His interest in sports ranged from football to tennis (which he played in high school and was pretty good at). He was currently attending Indiana University for a degree in Sports Communication, though he didn’t really know if that was something he actually wanted to do. He had several passions but he never felt the need the tie down to anything at least not yet anyway. He was young, he would have time to figure all of that out later. He was really enjoying talking to her and felt like this was something he should make a move on.
He: Look I think you’re already way cooler than like 90% of the girls I know, do you think I could take you out sometime? like to a movie or dinner or something?
She knew the question would come eventually, it’s not like they could just talk over messages forever, but she didn’t know how to respond.
He: I promise it won’t be terrible.
She: Well if I said yes what would the date entail?
He: I mean just going out to eat or catching a movie or something and getting to know each other.
Do you not really date or…?
She: Sorry I’m just not very good at this.
He: Alright so let’s pretend I never asked you out.
The conversation then turned into another geek out session. They talked about The Walking Dead again and recommended other shows for each other to watch. He suggested Mad Men and Breaking Bad. She started Breaking Bad almost immediately after that. They talked about movies and how they both liked going alone. She was perfectly content to be by herself and he preferred it to.
This went on for a few days until he decided to try again. He didn’t want to go for the full Monty again, it seemed to freak her out the first time. He did something subtler but still, at least he thought, was a step up from where they were now. He knew he wanted to get to know her more and so he put himself out there again.
He: Can I get your number?
She saw the message and waited a couple days to reply. She liked talking to him, it was easy, but the last guy that tried to get her number was so weird. He seemed different though and if she didn’t try the things that made her nervous, she would be stuck, rooted to the same old same old because it was comfortable and familiar. She had always played it safe when it came to the opposite sex but this felt right. So she decided to put herself out there too.