Friday, 9 April 2010

1. Bye Bye Miss American Pie

When I was sixteen I fell in love with my best friend. He was cute, funny and made me smile. He liked me back, and we would send each other old fashioned letters of funny thoughts. He once sent me an email about how much he liked me in rainbow colours with the lyrics of American Pie interspersed with what he was saying. Just to tell me. I don't know if it was like Andrew Lincoln's character in "Love, Actually" (without hope or agenda) but we made each other happy and that seemed to be enough.

He was emotionally unstable, vulnerable... a classic man-child crying out to girls with a need to protect and heal. He was beautiful, serious and playful. His ex had cheated on him. You wouldn't do that right? I was sniping, sarcastic, unsure of my place in the world. Using cynicism to disguise low self esteem. He told me his guy friend had told him to "join the queue, we saw her first". He told bizarre lies to impress... little things. I made spiteful comments to keep people at arms length... challenging. We balanced each other out. The perfect match.

Nothing happened, because I had a boyfriend. And because I was sixteen and hopelessly naive. And besotted. And cheating is a bad thing to do. And you can't break up with a guy for someone who makes you smile because, you know, that might hurt his feelings. And it would mean I was little better than his ex, right?

We almost kissed once. Sat on a bench built into a dry stone wall on a hot, dusty summer's day talking, he put his arms around me and our faces were so close. So very close. Too close to look into each other's eyes. One millimeter more and...

...And we never did. Because he was lovely and wouldn't kiss another boy's girlfriend without her making the move. I was sweet and naive and a good girl, such a good girl. It would be wrong.

Life went on. After a series of casual girlfriends. he met a girl at college and fell in love with her. My boyfriend, older, went to university and still stupidly besotted I got a job to have money to go and visit him every fortnight. We kept in touch on MSN on the rare occasions we were both on but the phone calls dried up, no more platonic letters which poured out our souls. We grew up and moved on.

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