My first date occurred in 1998. It happened, relevantly, at the local JCC. There was some sort of social thing for kids, and we must have hit it off. Of course, we must have hit it off in a very 14-year-old way. I must have been the guy wearing the silkiest of all the shirts. Of course, this was 1998. 1998 I looked like Ben Affleck,not Daredevil Ben Affleck, but School Ties Ben Affleck. I would have changed teams for School Ties Ben Affleck.

After the party, we talked several times on the telephone. We decided to meet, of course, at the JCC. First, we went to the snack bar, and then had an intense hugging session in the basement. For you purists who may claim that there are no basements in Texas, this is a very odd-shaped JCC and the bottom floor was semi-underground. I’m not crazy, this date actually happened.

Our second date was at the movies. Remember, this was the movies of 1998. There were none of the modern amenities that we often take for granted today. Namely, the armrests did not lift. We made the best of a bad situation and it made for a wonderful viewing of The Apostle starring Robert Duvall. Of course, once she got to actually know me, I was headed for a lifetime of loneliness. I did not know how to extend a conversation past “Here is the basement of the JCC.” I also did not know how to interact around her friends. I think we went to the science museum once. I also vaguely remember that the boys were into cars. I had no idea about either of these topics. Sadly, she broke up with me over the phone while I talked to her from my bedroom. One day I will have a car of my own. She’ll see! They’ll all see!

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