The Art of Courtship

I think we, as a society, should go back to the way things were in those Western romances I used to read. You know: when a guy wanted to date a girl, he’d go ask her pa if he could court her. Then they’d sit in the common room with her parents and sisters and visit with each other, or, if they were really naughty, they’d sit out on the porch together with glasses of lemonade while Ma watched out the kitchen window and Pa glanced over his shoulder from the barn every now and then.

Ah, the bliss of a simpler time. When you take the physical aspect out of the dating phase, you get to the stuff that really matters a lot faster. Hey, call me old-fashioned, but I speak from experience.

Shane (ex number two, for clarity’s sake) and I had a very western romance courtship, actually. Except, instead of sitting on the porch together with lemonade, we wrote letters and emails. Yep, we were a long distance couple. Internet lovers, if you will. Anymore, a lot of my friends are in long distance relationships, but back in high school, it wasn’t all that common of a thing. (How are you supposed to make out with your boyfriend under the bleachers if he lives in Montana, hm?)

Anyway, the beginning of our relationship had no physical aspect at all. Just words. That’s not to say it wasn’t sexy. Even at the tender age of fifteen, Shane could turn a phrase like you wouldn’t believe. His love notes were beyond compare.

It was those words, I think, that made me feel closer to him than I’d ever felt to Joe, despite the fact that Joe’s tongue had been down my throat regularly for the full ten months of our horny little tryst. The thing is, when you’ve got someone’s tongue down your throat, it’s hard to talk about your hopes and dreams and all that.

The downside of getting all that Hopes and Dreams stuff out there so quick is that you find all the skeletons in the closet a lot faster, too. Shane knew a lot of my faults even before I realized I’d let them out of the Bag of Bitchy.

Oh come on, you know you have a Bag of Bitchy. It’s full of all that stuff that you sort of stow away during those first few months of a relationship, whether you mean to or not. Then, quietly, the Bag of Bitchy comes open just slightly and an itty bitty bitchy escapes. But then the little bitchies left in the bag get all agitated that their friends have tasted freedom, and before you know it, the Bag of Bitchy is wide, wide open and all you can see is your guy’s hind end retreating as fast as it can.

And you wonder why he dumped you.

I wonder what happens to the Bag of Bitchy when you’re single for a really long time. Do you get so used to not hiding stuff that eventually you just don’t have a bag anymore? Or do you collect so much bitchy that by the time you meet a new guy and it’s time once again to bring out the Bag of Bitchy, the bitchies you’re trying to hide won’t all fit?

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