Finding an Old Love on Facebook
Carrie runs into her high school crush!
When I was 16 years old, a mysterious young man swooped into my life. He was as handsome as a fairy tale prince, as talented as a lyrical sprite and as fleeting as any happiness can possibly be in high school.
I vividly recall the day I first caught sight of his strikingly tall silhouette. After a nutritious hot lunch of pizza, French fries and a chocolate milk shake, I wandered into the choir room. It was my job to accompany the show choir on piano, a position I was CRAZY about. Imagine spending an hour each day playing show tunes while your best friends sang and danced in bedazzled dresses, cummerbunds and “character heels.” And getting a grade for it! A gift from on high.
But that day, someone else was plunking my piano. The choir director introduced us. He was Hans*, a foreign exchange student from Germany. He also happened to be a piano prodigy. So from now on, my teacher explained, Hans and I would be sharing the role of show choir accompanist – trading off between a real piano and a bass keyboard.
Normally I would have argued about how unfair this was. How I’d spent years preparing for this position. How I’d won the job fair and square after an extensive audition process.
But there was nothing normal about Hans’ irresistible flop of dark hair. Or his ruddy cheeks. Or his stunningly chiseled face. Or those manly hands. Or …
“Great!” I warbled, “Welcome to show choir!” And I meant it.
His hotness – at least in my memory – was of mythic proportions. (And as I recall, supported evidentially by the many, many girls in my class he “dated.”) I would often get so flustered in his presence that I’d lose my place in the music, or notice the piano keys slickened from my sweaty palms. Way to lure him in, right?
Despite my excruciating awkwardness, Hans always made me feel incredibly special. He’d save me a seat on the show choir bus, teach me a blues scale I could improvise with, even invite me to parties. (I attribute these kindnesses to the fact that he hadn’t been around long enough to gauge exactly how far I tipped “pariah” on the school’s social scale. Oh, and also to the fact that he wanted to ask my best friend to homecoming.)
Anyhow, one of the only times I ever snuck out of my house was when Hans invited me to a party while his host parents were out of town. I was too shy to act on my massive crush. But sitting beside him on the piano bench as he called out, “Eins, zwei, drei!” and played Eric Clapton‘s “Layla” with soulful authority – was enough to melt my heart.
At the end of the year, Hans returned to his homeland. I was left to play lonesome show choir ballads solo.
These were the days before we had cell phones and e-mail and Facebook. So I suppose it’s only natural that the legendary Hans slowly faded from my memory. Until one day … he was gone altogether.
Cut to three days ago.
I clicked to the “suggested friends” page on my Facebook account. Guess what ruddy-cheeked German was staring back at me?
Find out what happens next week when Carrie reconnects with her high school crush on Facebook!
Carrie’s latest blog post: Should You Forgive a Cheater?
*Names have been changed to protect the handsome.