A Scarlett Letter?

Let me start off by saying that I&#39ve never really been the outgoing type.

Well, that&#39s not completely true, but for the most part, I&#39d say I&#39ve sort of lived my life as a quasi-social isolationist. I go to work in the morning, repeatedly show up exactly on time, sit at my desk, do my work and hardly get up, save to refill my coffee cup or water bottle. I speak only when spoken to. I do everything my bosses tell me to do&#39in fact, if my bosses ever told me to jump off of a bridge, I&#39d probably do it. I&#39m a silent follower. I work under a wholly Puritan value and work system, and because of this, it&#39s really hurt my performance in the realm of love. Women hardly ever go for that guy who sits in the corner scouring at his computer. They want that guy who has the big muscles, the braggadocios attitude, the steady income, the big Upper West Side apartment. They want the guy who cares about how he looks (down to the sheen on his golden cufflinks); uses a bite-sized, digestible, third-grade vocabulary and is up on all the changes to the common vernacular (for example, uses &#39bling&#39 and &#39whatnot&#39 in everyday speech); wears cologne and uses hair gel; and carries himself as if he has purpose.

I&#39m none of these things.

So that is why what happened to me the other night was so out of the ordinary. I was taking the PATH train home from work, after a particularly grueling day. We were in the middle of deadline, and I had just copyedited several thousand words of miniscule type-font on the advent of what the writer of the piece kept referring to as &#39flo-etry in motion.&#39 I was at my wits end, had reached the end of my rope, was past the point of no return. To put it mildly, I wasn&#39t in the greatest of moods when I sat down in that uncomfortable, stuffy train car, my head lowered as if in prayer, a sweat stain beginning to bleed through the middle of my shirt. Moments later, though, I felt a gust of wind blow through the open doors of the train, and I caught the faint hint of perfume wafting over the hot air. The hint became a full-on blast, as its wearer sat down in the seat to my immediate left, her hair slightly bobbing as she sat down.

Now, I must say that I have this horrible habit of staring at beautiful women on the subway. I know what you&#39re thinking&#39this guy&#39s a stalker, this guy&#39s a lewd. No, no, no. I understand that it probably freaks them out, but I just can&#39t help it; like I said before, my everyday puritanical ways have led to my complete and utter lack of intercourse (socially, conversationally, and well, &#39 you understand, don&#39t you?). On this particular occasion, risking all forms of red-faced embarrassment, I had to completely turn my head to the left to see who was sitting next to me. My Word! I exclaimed to myself. It&#39s the girl from Matchpoint (I had just seen the movie not a week ago and was driven to nearly uncontrollable tears during the scene where she and the male lead rolled around sensually in a field in the rain. I have never been so affected by the sight of a woman in all my adult life). Needless to say, I quickly snapped my head back into the face-forward position and went absolutely, shivering cold. She was right there, next to me, in the seat on the train, her sumptuous right thigh nearly touching mine.

What to do what to do what do I say to a girl like this who I find so uncontrollably, I mean incredibly, oh my god oh my god oh my god I can&#39t even think of the words, jesus christ oh my god what am I going to do does anyone else notice, I think I&#39m going to, holy crap, what do I what do I what do I &#39

&#39Excuse me,&#39 she said, in her delightfully raspy voice.

&#39Excuse me, there.&#39

My thoughts stopped dead in their tracks.

&#39Excuse me, sir,&#39 she said with slightly more emphasis.

I turned, and her eyes pierced right through me. I was face to face with&#39

&#39Could you give me your humble opinion?&#39

I just kept staring. I had no motor skills, no way of moving my mouth to form the required words.

&#39Do you think I&#39m hot?&#39

I just stared. Staring, staring, staring, staring. I have to say something. Say something YOU ASSHOLE!

&#39Umm, yes. No, definitely, I think,&#39 I said.

&#39Wait &#39 you think I&#39m hot.&#39

&#39Well &#39&#39

&#39Well what?&#39

&#39Well, do you think you&#39re hot?&#39

&#39Well &#39&#39

&#39Well what?&#39

&#39Well, no one&#39s ever asked me that,&#39 she said, sounding slightly confused.

At this point, her cheeks turned a shade of pink. In reaction to this, I opened my mouth, again not finding any words except

&#39So?&#39 I said, bolstering the stupidest question I&#39d ever posed a hot girl in my entire life. What the hell was I thinking?

&#39Well, no one&#39s ever come out and said, &#39Hey, Scar, I think you&#39re hot,’ but &#39&#39

&#39But what?&#39

&#39But I have a feeling that I probably am.&#39

&#39Why &#39probably&#39?&#39 I said. I&#39m such a f&#39ing dunce.

&#39Well &#39&#39

&#39Well what?&#39

&#39Well, I think I am.&#39

&#39Well, you either are or you aren&#39t. I think &#39yes&#39 is your only viable option. In fact, [I had no idea where this sudden inspiration to be outgoing came from] would you like to get a beer when our train gets to 33rd Street?&#39 [While we were discussing her hotness, the doors had closed and the train had started eeking its way toward Manhattan. Surprisingly, it was rush hour, and nobody was on our car. The movie Risky Business crossed my mind, but I kept my hands to myself. Like I said …]


So began my evening and night with Sco-Jo (she told me her closest friends call her this.).

Now, I&#39m not going to divulge what we did once we got to Manhattan or where we went, but let me tell you, it was a night I&#39ll never forget. It ended with her whispering something in my ear, which of course I&#39ll never tell you. That was after we made l-l-lov &#39 ing glances at a cute puppy dog nearby her apartment in Grammercy. We exchanged cell phone numbers, and we bid each other adieu.

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