Last night I meticulously marked off the to-do items on my checklist so that I could arrive at my interview this morning with the following list completed:
--Steam iron green jacket
--Lint roll black pants
--Iron black pants
--paint nails neutral color
--wash & dry hair into pleasing style
--make copies of resume at kinko's
--find black leather interview folder in trunk of car
--find acceptable business-like purse
--wash and dry black trouser socks
Needless to say, the hours between 8pm (when I got off work) and midnight (when I finally collapsed into bed) were filled with all kinds activities; most of which were accomplished with cringe-inducing nervous energy. After the resume, the folder, the purse and the car washing was done but before the lint-rolling, trouser sock washing and black pant ironing had commenced I decided I would model the interview outfit for my neighbor Lilleeeee. And even though Lilleeee had a Male Guest for the evening, she graciously obliged to weigh in her approval of the interview duds.
So I slipped on my black heels, my un-ironed black pants and my steamed green jacket. I located the ridiculously expensive pearl earrings that my aunt gave me as part of my college graduation gift, feeling guilty for only wearing them to the one-two interviews a year in which I participate. I pulled my hair back in a semblance of the style I hoped The Hair would agree to do the next morning. And then I walked out of my door to walk exactly 2 feet to the left and climb the stairs to Lilleeee's apartment, where I'm sure she and her Male Guest waited with bated breath to view my proposed interview garb.
Where I promptly commenced to run my mouth for 30 minutes. About absolutely nothing. And Lilleeee's Male Guest, sensing my female distress much as a deer senses the hunter that's about to shoot a raging hot bullet through it's chest, quickly retreated into the kitchen to get me a beer.
After beer two, the nervous energy that had been threatening to manifest itself by way of vomiting had subsided to a dull roar. I decided it was best for me to leave Lilleeee and Male Guest to whatever it is we girls do with our Male Guests (and if you REALLY have to think about what we females are planning when we invite you over for a movie then you are TRULY SPECIAL) and make my way back down to my apartment and my super-duper list that I'm sure was hopping about the room waiting for me to finish it. I tell Lilleee good night and head down the stairs where Male Guest is already at the bottom of the landing pulling his cell phone out of his pocket, intent on returning a phone call from earlier in the evening. Before I go into my apartment, we make the customary "it was good to see you again" comments and start up idle chit chat about the next day's interview, my nervousness, my general weirdness, etc. I even show him my Christmas tree visible in the foyer where The Demon Cats have managed to tear off EVERY SINGLE ORNAMENT from the very bottom branch to roughly 4 feet off the ground. On a six foot Christmas tree, THAT'S A LOT OF ORNAMENT-LESS SPACE. So we laugh about The Demon Cats, who are trying to escape out of the open door, when he asks me:
"Why don't you have a boyfriend?"
Now, before I proceed, this question was not asked in the manner that one would ask because they're interested in becoming your boyfriend. Just a general, almost naive, curiosity.
Me: "Well, I sent out a memo but I haven't gotten any responses yet."
He stared quizzically at me, my random humor throwing him for a loop.
Me: "Just out of curiosity, why do you ask?"
Male Guest: "Well, it just seems like you'd have one."
Again, he didn't say this in a cruel manner, a joking manner, a leering manner or any other inappropriate manner. It was like being asked by a kid why you don't wear a diaper, too. They genuinely just want to know why. Though I will say I have no idea how he knew that I don't have a Consistent Male Friend of my own or even why he'd bring it up. We'd spent the past 30 minutes talking about nail polish colors, the attributes of wearing hair up or down and why Sonic breakfast burritos are ever so fucking tasty. But nothing about boyfriends.
So I answered as honestly as I could:
"It appears that most people find me weird, which is not something that endears me to men, which would be why no one has responded to the boyfriend memo."
Male Guest: "Oh. I think you just stress too much. Everything will work out, don't you worry 'bout it. And good luck on your interview tomorrow. You'll find something that'll make you happy."
Which is, of course, exactly what I needed to hear.