Date: 9 September 2005, 20:00 hrs
Location: New York, New York, Gramercy Park, my match box apartment
Conditions: It is a Friday night. My first Friday night living in New York City. An old guy friend from college who already lives in the city is coming over the catch up. In college I took for granted that constant and flirtatious social interaction was built into my day. After college, I have to choose who I see… and they have to choose me back.
Observations: Old Friend arrives at my teeny apartment and I suddenly realize that he’s here because we want to see each other. On purpose. He wears a button down shirt, tucked in, and looks pretty decent. On purpose. This is no casual run in and we both act stiff and awkward. We settle in to two arm chairs for an evening activity of watching a bad movie. Old Friend and I are both so hyper-aware of the other person’s presence that even when the B-listers recite their toilet humor lines, neither of us laughs because neither of us is paying attention. 82-Minutes later, the movie wraps, and Old Friend departs. It feels like the air is dense with conversation that we thought, but didn’t say aloud.
To my surprise, the bells rings and I buzz him back up. I open the door and he is standing there holding a bouquet of bodega flowers.
Symbolism: Gifts. Gestures. Tokens. Treasures. In any interaction when one person gives something to another has to mean something. Maybe it means congratulations, or sympathy, or appreciation, or other unspoken salutation. So, if Im a 20-something in New York City, what does this mean? I quickly consult my guide.
Oh I see.
Conclusion: Old Friend Transitioning into the Friday Night Revolver.
Jacqueline is the writer of the blog Moths to a Flame (mothstoaflame.net). She hangs in Greenpoint, moonlights on Wall Street, and is addicted to frequent flier miles. You can follow her on Twitter @mclurespickle.
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