Awkward Moments (part 2)
Sometimes letters to two are two too many. I’d like to say I didn’t make mistakes in relationships, but if I did I would be lying. I’ve made a multitude of mistakes. When I was a rambunctious teenager I tried dating two girls from different towns. “They would never find out,” I reasoned. For awhile I was careful and the girls did not know about each other.
Because of my carelessness that changed and my carefully constructed world exploded. After a full day at college, football practice, and homework, I stumbled through my front door tired and hungry. After a quick meal, I decided to write a letter to Lucy before I went to work as an usher at the local theater. My words were beautiful and efficient and I finished ahead of schedule. “Why not write a letter to Brenda as well?” I asked myself. “For once I’ll be ahead.” That letter was finished quickly but I rushed, afraid I’d be late to work. I wasn’t paying attention when I stuffed the letters into envelopes.
A few days later I received a phone call. Lucy’s angry voice greeted me. I listened while she explained how much she was hurt when she received a letter meant for someone else. It was an awkward conversation because I had no defense for my callous behavior. Switching the letters was a mistake, but even worse I was cheating by having another girlfriend. I shriveled up inside and said I was sorry. We closed our conversation with instructions never to see or speak to each other again.
I’m no genius but my math was telling me one girl was unaccounted for. I was dreading a second phone call, a letter, or lightning to strike me, something big and punishing. Brenda called a few days later. She was willing to forgive me. That shocked me more than Lucy’s angry call. We talked and talked. Finally I admitted my guilt was overwhelming and I needed to get my act together before I could be in a relationship. I told her I was deeply sorry I had hurt her. Although we parted on friendly terms I never had contact with her again.
In my mind I can still see the fishhook dangling from his lip, his face pale, his eyes wide with terror. A few minutes before we had been peacefully fishing, the small boat gliding into shallow coves and out of the deeper currents of the Feather River. My partner, Tom, continued to get strike after strike while I watched, impatiently waiting for a fish to grab my lure.
I knew his technique. He would guide the boat in at an angle, allowing him to cast across a wide area. His lure was always the first to shoot out across relatively virgin areas.
I was determined that just once my lure would go first. He turned into a small cove and got ready to cast. I realized I was going to be further away so I brought my pole back a few more inches. I snapped my pole forward but I didn’t see the lure fly by. I turned around. Tom was silent for a reason. My lure had caught him, one barb hooked securely in his lower lip, and my slightest motion drew his lip forward.
I couldn’t leave the boat and equipment so I called his wife. She took him to the emergency room while I took the fishing gear to his house. I joined them later at the emergency room. He still had the lure dangling from his lip and by now interns and nurses were posing for pictures with him. If there had been cell phones the incident would have gone viral.
Although he was getting lots of attention he still didn’t look happy. At that moment I was glad we had been fishing rather than hunting. He didn’t need a gun right then.
Finally a doctor came out with a pair of pliers and clipped the hook. Nurses dabbed the area with antiseptic and the doctor told him he was free to go. His lip healed quickly but he still had trouble speaking to me.
- Awkward Moments (part one) (savings2envy.org)
- Spoon-fed fish (kansascity.com)
- 10 Ways To Be Less Awkward (thoughtcatalog.com)
- Wasn’t hard to gear up for these fishing gadgets (jacksonville.com)
- A Letter to Myself (endlessencounters.wordpress.com)
- Awkward Moments – Life’s Great Levelers (fasab.wordpress.com)