So I met this girl.
Isn't that how all great (and tragic) stories begin? "There was a girl, the most wonderfullest girl in the world," or something like that.
So I met this girl. She lives in North Carolina (I know, I know, don't start). She has a blog, which is how we met. She left a comment on mine, I left a comment on hers, which came first, I cannot tell you (though I could probably look it up). It's really neither here nor there. Immaterial, as they say.
So I met this girl. She's pretty smart and she's pretty pretty (unless the photos have been Photoshopped (it's always strange when new words like that enter the lexicon, when nouns, proper names, become verbs, like when you "Google" something, even if you're using a different search engine), you never can tell these days, though I don't think that's the case in this instance). She has a great sense of humor (she has to if she's able to put up with me, afterall). She's well-read and well-educated (so Flying Spaghetti Monster knows why she likes my writing). She's into all kinds of music. She doesn't mind comics, and is even related to one of the most revered comic book artist families in the history of the medium.
(She's even Jewish, Mom. A nice Jewish girl, just like you've always wanted.)
So I met this girl. And she has all these great, quirky, fascinating aspects to her (indeed, being captivated by Scarlett Johansson's cleavage is certainly not of minor importance), yet there's one thing missing that I've always thought was of excruciating importance in regards to girls I'm attracted to: baggage. She seems to have no baggage.
For the most part (not always, but often), due to a complex I've only recently attempted to rid myself of (and perhaps I've done so successfully), I've been drawn to "damaged" girls, for lack of a better term. You know the type: emotionally unstable, more issues than Rolling Stone, fragile, desperately in need of a knight in dark denim and a baseball cap to rescue them from whatever tragic awfulness has enveloped and overshadowed their true effervescent nature.
It was, of course, immensely self-serving and egotistical to believe that I could, in some way, "rescue" these girls, unasked and unwanted. I suppose it was also a defense mechanism of sorts. Were I unable to protect a poor, delicate, fractured girl (perhaps there's an air of sexism and chauvinism involved as well), well, it wasn't for lack of trying. She simply had "too many issues." I got to feel good about myself because, hey, I gave it a shot. Can't save everyone, you know. And I'd simply move on to my next "distressed damsel" after a period of overwrought angst punctuated by listening to way too much Nine Inch Nails and Stabbing Westward.
So I met this girl. And as far as I can tell, she has no baggage. No issues. No broken home. No drug abuse or abusive relationships haunting her (no offense, Alissa). Of course, for all I know, she might be loonier than Arkham Asylum after Batman rounds up all of Gotham's crazies, but if so, she hides it well.
I, of course, have baggage of my own (in truth, we all do), and it really is unrealistic to think that she has none at all, but if it was something major and horrible I think I might have heard about it by now. On the other hand, she lives in North Carolina and I live in Nebraska and why would you want to share those kinds of details with someone you've known for mere months?
It's always weird, when you first meet someone. In those first few moments you can be anyone and anything you want, free from expectation. First impressions, as they say, are lasting impressions (someone says that, don't they?). But no matter who you try to be, the truth comes out eventually. You can't hide who you are, not even over the internet.
I will admit to a certain fondness for clean slates, those initial conversations, simple and baggage-free, when nothing is at stake and if you make a fool of yourself it's more charming than idiotic. But the more invested you become in someone's life, the game changes. The stakes are higher. The risk is greater. Your future depends on taking a chance on "all in" or folding and walking away from the table.
So I met this girl...