Typical

I was recently asked to give a male perspective on something. Which I did. But, I disclaimered it by saying, “Yeah, but I am not a typical dude.”

And I didn’t mean because when I am watching “Pushing Daisies” it frequently stresses me out that Chuck and Ned are standing too close together and I want to push Emerson Cod in between them.

I meant it in a good way.

At least I try not to be a typical dude.

Of course, I still have my boy behaviours…

This all reminded me of a story.

And now I will tell it. Otherwise that would have been the shittiest intro ever.

Picture it… Nova Scotia, Peter’s high school days.

I was sixteen. I was dating a girl. She was a year older than me. She was nice. She was cute. And while I wasn’t crazy about her, she seemed to like me a lot. Which is something I admire in women.

I should say that it’s not that I disliked her. She just didn’t… excite me. And I don’t mean sexually. There was just nothing about her personality that really, well, excited me. You know how you meet someone and there is something they do, or don’t do, or think that knocks you on your ass and makes you want to follow them around as if they were the Grateful Dead? Yeah, I didn’t find that.

One day I was doing some volunteering for a political campaign. (Yes, I was rocking the vote long before P-Diddy. Of course, he narrowly beat me to the idea of taking entire pre-existing songs and rapping over them. Though I once did a little freestyle over “Yellow Polka Dot Bikini” that would BLOW. YOUR. MIND.) I was in the campaign office and the door opened. A couple of girls walked in. And then a third…

A recurring moment in my fiction writing is when a dude sees a woman for the first time and is completely bowled over.

Well, this was the first and only time this has really happened to me. A complete stranger walks in and I immediately think, “Hi. You are my next girlfriend.”

She was blond and gorgeous.

She smiled at me. I smiled back.

And then I knew that I was breaking up with my girlfriend.

I figured the best thing was to do it immediately. So, the next day I rocked the old classic, “We have to talk…”

She started crying immediately. But, I somehow managed to power through. I explained that it just didn’t feel right. That it was nothing she had done wrong. Etc. She asked if there was someone else. I tried to lie. I suck at lying.

And then she had her say on the issue.

I am not sure how much time passed, but I suspect it was a good half an hour. (Knowing me at sixteen, I was probably thinking two things: 1) “I wonder what new girl is doing.” 2) “I’d love some chicken fingers.”) She cried. She yelled. She swore. At one point I think she accused me of assassinating Archduke Franz Ferdinand. And then there was more swearing and yelling and crying.

Finally she finished. She wiped her nose. She stared at me silently for a few seconds before saying…

“I guess I probably should have gone down on you, huh?”

Whaaaaa?

I just shrugged and managed not to say, “Well, that is a lovely addition to any repertoire, really.”

And that, my friends, was that. I was a free man.

But, because I believe STRONGLY in a post break-up waiting period, I didn’t do anything for a while.

Then I started hanging out with new girl. I adored the crap out of her. And after the proper waiting period was over… I waited another month before making my move. I’m incredibly slow and lame like that.

Of course, during that month, she and I were spending a lot of time together. And when we weren’t together, we talked constantly on the phone. For EIGHT HOURS one night. And, yes, I was still waiting for a sign that she liked me. (“And why aren’t you married, Peter?” they ask.)

I remember the night that I made my move with stalker-like detail. I remember the temperature outside. I remember what the moon looked like. I remember the sound of crickets. I remember what she was wearing. I remember the kiss. I remember her exhaling afterwards and giving me the “It’s about damn time!” look. I remember me shrugging and giving her the “I’m a goof. Part of my charm?” face.

A few weeks into our official dating, she ran into the ex in a restaurant bathroom. And the ex told her…

“Peter… he’s a typical guy.”

New girl told me that and I was outraged. It bothered me sooooo much.

The ex was also saying all kinds of other shitty stuff about me around town.

[As an aside that makes me sound like even more of an ass, I’ll tell you what happened to new girl. We dated for a year or so. But, then seventeen year old Peter started getting phone calls and attention from every sexually liberal woman in the county. His girlfriend was awesome, but Peter wanted to sow his wild oats. Peter broke up with her. Of course, he was still crazy about her. The very next night, one of these women approached Peter, lit a cigarette and exhaled smoke in his face and said, “We should get together tomorrow night.” Peter immediate realized, “I’ve made a huge mistake.” Which Peter compounded later when a Threes Companyesque series of events led to him asking out new girl’s friend. So, Peter spent months staying up at night, kicking himself in the ass, listening to depressing music and eating double-stuffed Oreos. “You know, Peter Cetera and the boys from Chicago were right. Being without you DOES take a lot of getting used to. *crunch crunch crunch*” I gained 15 pounds. I tried to tell people I was bulking up for basketball season because I was the shortest starting center (like 6’2″ at the time) in the history of basketball. They asked why I didn’t just lift a lot of weights. I replied, “I considered that. I did. But, if it’s all the same with you, I’m just gonna try to skate by with whatever God given talent I can muster up. Cool? Super.” This aside has really gotten away from me, eh?]

To this day, I won’t talk to that ex. I saw her a few years back in a lobby and turned my head and kept walking. DEAD TO ME.

To be completely honest, I really don’t remember a single one of the mean things she was saying about me.

But, I’ll never forget “he’s a typical guy.”

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  1. Michelle and the City says:

    so what exactly IS the proper waiting period? i feel like you have all the answers.

  2. Peter says:

    Oh, Michelle. You have come to the right place.

    There are many factors involved. Including, but not limited to…

    How long were you together?
    How serious was it?
    Were they an asshole before, during, or after the break-up?
    Have they already moved on?

    How cute is the new person?

  3. Miriam says:

    Wow. You being a “typical guy” couldn’t be further from the truth. Man I freaking hate girls like that. Suck it up, you weren’t right for him…geez.

    http://lspoon.wordpress.com

  4. 123Valerie says:

    At least you’re not on Don’t Date Him, Girl.

  5. mr.ska says:

    This post has enlightened me. I now know how you’re going to finally get married. You’re not going to find The One Woman that finally quiets all the discord from the varios Peters living in your head. You won’t get it together and figure out what you need and who you need it from. No, not at all.

    A woman is going to come along, like you a LOT, and NEVER TAKE NO FOR AN ANSWER. Yes, she will outlast all the Peters, not only put up with but adore your idiosyncracies, and have you down on one knee within the first 12 months of knowing her. Oh, and she and the Monkey and ACN will form an indestructable Mock The Unc sorority that will bruise your ego but make you love her all the more.

    Just you see.

    As for the waiting period, I think it’s over once you no longer (or very rarely) think about your ex. If you’ve forgotten about them for an entire week, you’re good to go.

  6. Hope says:

    When watching Pushing Daisies I find myself mentally screaming, “Don’t stand so close to each other. You’re making me nervous!”

    Good to hear I’m not the only one who takes TV shows a little too seriously. :)

  7. each of the two says:

    Dude,
    you watch “pushing daisies” and talk on the phone for 8 hour streches (depending on the necesity of the moment)

    you are anything but “typical”

    (i mean unless you are gay, but all this talk of chicks and blondes and smooching makes me thinks no)

  8. molly says:

    Far from typical, my dear.

  9. Katie says:

    I have a problem with the word “typical.” Is there such a thing? Really? That’s where stereotypes come in, by giving something the “typical” tag. Typical guy, typical cheerleader, typical pimp, typical wannabe… you get my drift.

    Very few of us are typical. IMO.

  10. Peter says:

    miriam: Thank you. I also hate girls like that.

    123valerie: Had it been around at the time…

    mr.ska: Dude… I suspect that you may be onto something here.

    hope: Right? They stand right next to each other!

    each of the two: Pushing Daisies rules. Though I could do with less “32 years, 4 months, 14 days…” business. AS for the 8 hour phone thing, I realllly had a crush on her.

    molly: Awwww. Thanks!

    katie: You raise a very good point. But, if I was a typical pimp, could I rock a purple fedora?

  11. CamiKaos says:

    no no, that was all mean jealous revenge talk, you don’t seem typical at.all.

  12. mindy says:

    “Disclaimered”? Can you just turn anything into a verb or what?

    I hear only typical guys do shit like that.

    Zing!

  13. distracted spunk says:

    Where’s the twist? I was waiting for the twist, Peter!

    Also. I worry for Chuck and Ned too. All that plastic wrap – what if it tears while they’re kissing! It better be some heavy duty Saran wrap is all I got. Do you think they could have sex if they saran wrap themselves?

  14. Peter says:

    camikaos: Why, thank you.

    mindy: “Peter D WINS! 333-330”

    distracted spunk: Sometimes I like to zig when people expect a zag. And now I’ll be wondering about them having sex whenever I watch “Pushing Daisies.”

    Also, how awesome is the chick that plays Chuck? Holy crap.

  15. Eve says:

    Dude, she was hurt and angry! At 17, who’s evolved enough to not talk shit?

  16. Ashley says:

    What IS a typical guy anyway? I’d like to know. So I can like avoid them.

    I have a feeling you are not a typical guy though. I mean i do keep coming back to your blog to read. oh and you read and comment on all my gushy posts about my date. haha. I give you a lot of credit for that!

  17. blogging says:

    ….and this is why i remain true to the fact that guys take breakups jsut as hard IF NOT WORSE than girls.

    and yes, i may or may not haev jsut drunka bottle of wine ot make me write this fact.

    you know. just saying. lush barbie over here.

    but seriosuly? far from typical peter. far from typical. in a good way.

    p.p.s. those word verifaction letters looook quire dautnigng. i mean dauntinnng. damnit. why cant i speeel.

    shit. i gie up/.

    OMG THIS IS THE SECOND TIME I HAVE T ENTER THE LETTTTERS. I HATE THE LETTTERS.

  18. QueenBee says:

    Petey, (mind if I call you Petey?)

    You are definitely not the typical guy. You are of the guy species, definitely. But, if you’re ever wondering if you’re ‘typical’ or not, just remember that you blog. And it’s not always about sex, or cars, or sports. This makes you VERY atypical for your species. You’re like a dog, but you’re the one that can talk, or something.

    That makes sense, right?

    Also, has anyone ever told you that you look like Stephen Colbert? You do.

  19. Paige Jennifer says:

    It’s funny how some things you can’t recall and others you can’t forget.

    I like the way you turn your head inside out and put it on display. Okay, maybe that made no sense. Or maybe it did.

  20. skinny says:

    hey pete, be the bigger guy, let it go (of course i know you have already). of course you don’t need to go talk to her and be friends, but why let something like this bother you?

    btw, to me, being a “typical” guy is not a condescending comment, it’s actually quite manly. make me think of the cave man, macho, crafty sort of guy, which is kinda attractive. but maybe because i’m just weird.

  21. Cait says:

    ” She was nice. She was cute. And while I wasn’t crazy about her, she seemed to like me a lot. Which is something I admire in women.”

    You sound just like my Peter. Well not mine anymore, seeing as how he pulled the same shindig on me that you pulled on that girl.

    Typical guys.

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