Monthly Archives: April 2012

Romance Isn’t Dead, It Just Watches Bad Movies.

Catherine: Isn’t young romance cute? Except not when you are the 12-year old couple GOING FOR IT on a street corner in the middle of the day whom I encountered the other week. Those two need to shut. it. down. If you’ve been reading, you already know about my deodorant-obsessed first boyfriend but perhaps noticed no tales of a first kiss? Perhaps? Well, that’s because there was no kiss (thankfully.) That “special” moment was reserved for the summer after 8th grade. That’s probably PRETTY late. I get that. I understand. And we all need to deal with it and know that given my awkward social behavior, it was a real no-brainer.

My SECOND boyfriend, let’s call him Timmy (no relation to his real name, but I think the name Timmy is funny and a little tragic, like this story) and we were in love, I think. I base this on the fact that he gave my Cherry Chapstick once at a movie theater. And that is all I ever want, really. I have a chapstick addiction, and we were dating before it even started, so he was really ahead of the curve. All my friends at the movie (group date, clearly) thought it was very romantic. As did I.

So, one spring day we trek to the local elementary school fair where I win a goldfish which would go on to live for over a year and would be named Spot, because it had a spot. Its death would break my mother’s heart. After the fair, we headed to my friend “Sarah”‘s house, where she was hanging out with her boyfriend. Her boyfriend, whose name I THINK was actually Sacha, was in middle school despite being maybe 16 years old, had facial hair, and was a Russian drugdealer. I am making zero of this up. Suffice it to say, Timmy was impressed.

We all settled down to watch “Starship Troopers,” Sara and Sacha on an opposing couch very obviously doing things. Sexy things. It was gross, but fascinating. At one point Timmy leans over and whispers in my ear, “I wanna kiss you.” I think to myself, WE ARE IN LOVE! FUTURE HUSBAND (truly believed that, guys.) I AM EXCITED BUT MOSTLY NERVOUS. Maybe 10 minutes later, “the kiss” happens. It is disgusting, wet, and wrought with bad breath. I complete the movie by snuggling into the crook of his arm at such an angle that he cannot possibly kiss me again. And he never would. We broke up days later.

Still, I know I am beat by my friend who lost her v-card whilst watching “Spaceballs.” That’s alright.

Jana: I love the fact that your first kiss took place in such close proximity to a 16-year old Russian drug dealer/middle school student. He seems to embody, for me, what’s really beneath a first kiss: fear, darkness, danger, inappropriate behavior given maturity level, etc.

And my first kiss didn’t happen until I was 16 (REALLY edgin up on 17. It’s like I was in The Sound of Music, except it was 2003), so. Don’t feel too bad.

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Cold Sores and Me, or, A Fun Problem To Have Is One That People Commonly Mistake For An STD.

Jana: If you’re an avid DWDSTDT reader (oh my god, ok, we see it too, that acronym is TERRIBLE. I’m gonna talk to our marketing intern about it, or in lieu of having a marketing intern I’m just gonna leave it – you guys don’t mind, right? We can talk about it if you do)… anyway, if you are, you may have read my previous post about my allergies. And you may have seen that my list of allergies contained some weird and not-super-explainable things, like chocolate and spicy foods. So, I will now disclose that those foods are to do with a problem entirely SEPARATE from my chronic congestion: my lips. Folks, I’m prone to cold sores. Who isn’t? Ok, some people, but not me.

Between junior year of high school and sophomore year of college, I got some seriously terrible cold sores that resulted in alienation and intense sadness. In high school, I just stayed home from my bakery job and tried to eat foods that I could fit into my mouth in one bite, so that I didn’t have to crack my lips open too much. When the sores struck in college, wiser and more tech-savvy,  I took to the internet. There, I read tips from fellow cold sore sufferers, such as “Go to the movies, so you’ll be distracted from the pain, but no one will be able to see you.” And, “Ice your lips to stop the tingling” (I did this religiously, often falling asleep with ice pressed to my lips and waking up in pools of melted ice). Anyway, I also read that you should avoid chocolate and spicy foods and nuts, and SO I HAVE. And will. Because cold sores are the worst, and it’s awkward when people think you have herpes, specifically if you are dating them, which I’ll get into in more detail some other time.

…. or NOW. Briefly.

First, I’ll show you this picture, in which I DON’T have cold sores. This is to spare you all, as one picture of me with cold sores does exist, and it’s straight disgusting. Here, though, I look as angry as I looked with the cold sores, but my lips are pursed in a way that would have been impossible in cold-sore condition. So, this is a photo of me on a good day, really.

I was once dating a very nice guy. Now, before my first date with this guy, one of my housemates was hanging out on my bed while I got ready. “Maybe you should put that valtrex away,” he said jokingly, referring to the pills that I took daily to stave off cold sore attacks (I kept the bottle next to my bed – I’m all about convenience). I’m sure I don’t have to tell you, regular viewer of television commercials for prescription drugs, that valtrex is commonly used to treat herpes. Now, looking back, I can see that my friend was not joking, but rather trying to protect me from future weird mix-ups. At the time, though, I just responded “I know right?”, and laughed. We moved on, he approved my outfit of black skinny jeans and a black top (I am NOT a risk-taker, fashion-wise), and I went on the date.

Cut to a few weeks later, when the romantic interest in question and I had been on several dates, and he had seen my room, and things had been going well until they sort of stopped going well and he stopped contacting me as much. I assumed the worst, which was that he’d realized he didn’t like me, weird but charming jokes and solid black outfits be damned.

But here’s the REAL story. After a week of light communication, I received an email on a Thursday night. I was so glad to hear from him! I opened the email and read the first few lines: “Jana: I like you, but something is bothering me and I need to talk to you about it. I saw your bottle of valtrex last week, and I know that you have herpes.”

OHH NOOOO. NOO. It’s just that.. I keep the pill bottles there cause I take them in the morning… I would have told you if I… NOOO. I wrote back and, luckily, we had a good laugh over it. Fake herpes scare! No better way to get to know someone. And no, I am not currently dating this person; we stopped dating shortly after the Valtrex/Email Incident. We both thought it was funny, but probably best to move on.

It’s now been a while since I’ve had a cold sore, but I can’t actually in good faith tell you that because I’m too suspicious. So I’m knocking on wood AS I WRITE THIS. I still take valtrex (and keep it in plain sight – one day I’ll own a medicine cabinet but not, honestly, until I win the lottery or an embarrassed spouse buys me one), and I don’t eat chocolate, and sometimes I ice my lips just for old times’ sake. Cold sores! And me. Together in sickness and in health.

Catherine: Oh, memories. I think that the day that Jana showed me the first fateful lines of the e-mail aforementioned was one of the greatest moments in my life. Jana, do you recall how long I laughed in your face? An approximate minute count? No? Nor I. Minutes turned into hours that day, so who knows how long I enjoyed your incredible misfortune.

I would like to mention how, often when Jana and I would get drunk alone in our apartment, the nights would freqently end in a good ol’ Jana ice-lipping. Another time she came to my house, and my brother saw what she was doing on our couch as we watched “Friends” and opened a second double bottle of white wine, and was so blown back that he too could not help but to laugh uncontrollably at her poor, cold-sored, can’t put lipstick on them lips. (Did you mention how you can ONLY put black chapstick on them? I greatly enjoy that as well.)

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