Sunday, May 4, 2014

My First Email Address

I didn't write the real address, because it's actually the email address my parents still use.

My dad set it up, I believe, and it was for all of us.  I was in my junior year of high school, and email as a concept was still pretty new, so I guess it didn't occur to me to get my own.  So, my high school boyfriend, David, would write emails to my family's email address.

Email may have been new, but I was still no fool, and by habit I'd print off copies of his letters and delete the actual email from the account.  I don't know if anyone would have read them--they were addressed to me, and I think the 90s were a simpler time, when people only read emails that began with their name--but, really, it wouldn't have mattered.  They were very sweet and profoundly innocent, mostly just him telling me how much he liked me, and when he first noticed me, and how he had been too shy to tell me.

David was very quiet, even for a high school boy, and even with the perspective of twelve years, I still don't really understand him.  I think he was nice, he may have even been exceptionally kind, though most of his attributes have been eroded in my memory.  I know he liked me--a lot--and I know that I was fascinated by that.  I also know that that he deeply, deeply embarrassed me.  He was cool in ways: he loved Nirvana (I think I still have one of his shirts somewhere) and he smoked, which, though I now realize was terrible, at the time I thought it was pretty edgy.  But he was also kind of weird, and not in that cute way that boys in coming of age stories are.  For example, once he dressed as a mime for school.  Black and white stripped shirt, white face paint, the works.  He didn't say anything all day (at least in the class I had with him, which was drama class--big surprise), and when I walked out of sixth period, he was standing there, silently, with a small bouquet of flowers he had picked for me.  I think that's when I knew that it wasn't going to work out.

I had my own teenaged issues to grapple with, and I didn't have enough self-assurance left over to not care that my whole AP government class saw this dude with white face paint hand me flowers.  So, I ended things, telling him that I really, really did want to be friends, and meaning it, but, it wasn't to be.  We weren't friends after that.

He didn't email me any more, and there was no facebook to stalk, so, like a character from a Jane Austen novel, all I was left with was printed copies of his electronic letters: tangible proof of the first boy who loved me.

Which, like my parents's email address, I still have.


  1. I hope you know, I'm your biggest fan. And. I love you.

  2. I really like this. I would love to read a compilation of your short essays. I like the way they read.

    really? the flowers and mime thing didn't do it for you? Did he also eat his peas one at a time?

    1. Yeah, and when I asked him about it, he said, "What's the hurry?"