Saturday, May 8, 2010

The Tuba Player and the Clarinetist, Part II

This is the second part of The Tuba Player and The Clarinetist. Yesterday's post is Part 1.

Even though we were a Christian school, we had our share of mischief. The food fight is where this all began. We mature, sophisticated seniors had a food fight. Yup, we were that stupid. (Although some of us were smart enough to illegally leave the lunch room before the teachers returned and made the poor fools who stayed do the clean-up.) The other consequence was that we had to eat lunch in our homerooms, for two weeks. Better supervision they said. Well, yes, if your assigned teacher shows up.

Anyways, there I was talking to Terry, Holly's boyfriend, in homeroom. The Tuba Player was his friend, so he's sorta in the conversation, sitting right there. Terry knew nothing of my admiration for said Tuba Player, nor did the Tuba Player have any idea of Terry's connection to Holly and thus to me. Nonetheless, Terry just casually throws into the conversation, “You know, the four of us should go out sometime.” Do you know what the Tuba Player said? “Only if I get Tina.” Can you believe it? He wanted to go out with me! But Terry and I can't help laughing, because of course he would “get” me, Holly and Terry were already dating!

Plans were made. December 20, 1983. (I have an engraved necklace with that date on it. As if I would forget...but it was a great first anniversary gift. The front says “A Date to Remember”, and the back has the date of that memorable date. But I'm getting ahead of the story.) We take The Tuba Player's Land Cruiser. We go to THE stupidest movie I've ever had the misfortune to see. “Two of a Kind”, with John Travolta and Olivia Newton John. It was SO bad we actually walked out. I'd never done that before, but we were suffering that much. So what should we do now? Why, go park somewhere. To “talk”. Which we actually did. (Don't really know what Holly and Terry were up to in the back seat...but The Tuba Player was quite nervous so talk is all we did.) For a very long time. And in the interest of honesty, I will admit that I'm that kind of girl: since he wasn't going to lean in and kiss me, I would have to make the first move. I think I freaked him out, honestly, but I got a good peck out of it and the ice was broken.

And then I was hooked. Couldn't wait for this shy, sweet, cute, wonderful guy to call me again. Which he did the next day. And asked me out again. And the rest, as they say, is history. We were inseparable. Broke the tradition of segregation. We sat in the middle of the courtyard, together! And took our off-campus breaks together. But the weeks were too long, and the weekends when we could really be together too short. I remember sitting there in class (we had all of ours together ~ small school, same college bound science track) thinking to myself, “How do all these other couples stand it?” I'm here dying for the weekend, and they seem just fine. Something had to be done.

Neither of us was allowed to go out during the week, but we got around that. See, the reason The Engineer was at this school, was that he'd used up his chances at his former school. They didn't take kindly to his not attending classes, and not completing work. His parents thought that at THIS school, he'd do better. Smaller, more attention. More accountability. But The Tuba Player still thought school was stupid, assignments stupid, and homework a complete waste of time. He's really, really smart, and the stuff we were learning so really, really lame. But his parents fell for it. They let me help him. Let me tutor him. How hysterical is that? So he'd come to my house most evenings, and we'd head for the basement. At first he thought the whole homework thing was just going to be our excuse for being together. He didn't realize yet that he was dating a psychotic over-achiever and nothing, not even a wonderful Tuba Player was going to mess with MY GPA. So we actually did homework. Between kisses. Takes a long, long time to get all your homework done that way. (What my parents {um, hi Mom!} didn't know was that I rarely had much homework. At all. This school was so much easier than my former high school that I was coasting through the classes.) So it was The Engineer's homework we were doing. All it took for him to do it was a swift kick in the rear, figuratively. I think he wanted to impress me with good grades. It certainly impressed his parents who were beyond thrilled that he was caring about school again.

I remember very distinctly how I felt about three weeks into our courtship, . I was headed down the stairs to my waiting boyfriend, and I had this excited, happy, nervous-yummy feeling. I realized that how I felt about him was so different from any of my other boyfriends. Was this love? It sure was a new feeling that I hadn't had before. All I knew is that I was ready to marry him right there. But it would take nine years of dating, and a lot of heartache in between before we tied the knot. And I've already taken up a lot of your time. Perhaps I'll share that part of our story another day :-)

5 comments:

Anne said...

I always wondered about that first year in CO and how you met the Engineer. Great story!

Brian Miller said...

awww...i love it! i love hearing peoples stories...so please continue, some time...

My name is PJ. said...

Nine years of dating leaves lots of stories! Looking forward!!

Jenny said...

What do you mean another day? Which day? When? Tutoring? Start writing.

Linda said...

Oh I love the 'first date' stories! Great one I'm ready for more!!!