Kidding Aside

Dearest Rachel –

Well, that was an odd end to the day.

The Sparks club activities, from my limited perspective, went fairly smoothly. We were doing the usual wrap-up; putting away chairs and tables and the like. You remember the drill. Once we would finish, we’d head over to the Cubbies room, where Ms. C and Erin would be doing their little bit of cleaning up of their room.

As it was, Erin had caught the bug all the cool kids have been getting, so she wasn’t there last night. But just because she wasn’t there was no reason to stop by; in fact, we figured that Ms. C might even have more to deal with on her own, and because of that, might need that much more help than usual. So Daniel and I stopped by regardless, only to find that she and another leader (I’ll call her Deen) were just about finished. We did a few last things, just to be helpful, and all of us were out the door in short order. Ms. C was all “See you next week?” to which Deen replied “Unless I get a hot date for Valentines Day.”

She was looking at me when she said it, too.

Or maybe it was just to have someone to look at.

How am I supposed to react to that? I’m pretty sure it was nothing more than a joke – certainly, Ms. C was all like ‘oh, that’s just Deen being Deen’ – and even if there was something between us, Monday nights are for Awana clubs (even back when you and I were together, we put responsibilities before romance more often than I care to admit; you even accompanied me to a praise team meeting that was taking place as the school year was starting – on our anniversary). But after just having dealt with being dropped – and in a really strange way, as I can’t read but the first few words of Austrine’s ‘Dear John’ text, if that’s even what it was meant to be – and, while talking with the folks about it, listening to Dad as he stressed his preference for actual networking and referrals for a search such as mine (ever the businessman, he is – contacts are everything, in every situation), I’m absolutely struck by the timing.

I couldn’t help myself; I actually asked her ‘Do you realize who you’re talking to?’ I’m not sure she considered that I might take her wisecrack as a serious request to be asked out – I don’t know if it occurred to her why I might, like forgetting the ancestry of a friend in the room when one makes a joke about said friend’s ethnic group. In fact, I’m still not sure, as I think she turned the question back on me as to whether I knew her. And I’ll be the first to admit that, no, I didn’t, and still don’t. Which is kind of the reason why her remark struck me as coming from out of left field.

I would never have considered Deen to be someone to ask out; it may be a cliché to say it, but I’d probably say she’s ‘not my type.’ But I can’t help wondering – was this really ‘just a joke,’ or was this an actual request? Have I overlooked her in favor of others I might prefer, or am I just overthinking a joke about the fact that Valentine’s Day is on a Monday, and Deen was mock-warning Ms. C that she might not be there next week, given the right set of circumstances?

I’m almost certain it’s the latter.


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I am Rachel's husband. Was. I'm still trying to deal with it. I probably always will be.

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