Decade Of Excellence: The Breakfast Club

Posted 11/15/2010 by smartblackboy in Labels: , , , , , , , , ,

Of a table of nine freshmen, we were the only two people laughing. Our group took pause from their food to shoot us ”the look,” but we only smiled at each other and resumed normal conversation. The sudden outpouring of mirth wasn’t because either of us had said anything funny, but that we had just realized that we could understand each other. For the rest of the night Devyn and I exchanged smiles, giggles, and secret glances – we connected, and even at eighteen we knew how much that was worth. The next day I was talking to my best friend, Katherine, and asked her for the scoop about Devyn. It turned out Devyn had a very cute boyfriend in Steven, another freshmen that she’d seen since high school, and that it was “very serious.” I was very disappointed: one minute it’s jokes over quesadillas, the next minute your future girlfriend is already spoken for and halfway to the altar. I couldn’t brood for too long, though, because what Katherine said next would change my life: “Don’t worry, I think I have a plan.”

As a teenager, I was profoundly influenced by the coming of age masterpiece Cruel Intentions. It was what I aspired towards (I was not a good person then, and if I were 18 now I am sure my hero would be Gossip Girl’s Chuck Bass). Katherine knew this and presented me with a plan that would make Sarah and Ryan proud. She had her own crush on Steven, and proposed that we worked together to break them up, and then both collect the respective prizes. I loved the idea, the intrigue, and the possible rewards. I was to befriend Steven and she would become friends with Devyn. Then we would all hang out and seduce our targets, and afterwards insinuate to our new “friends” that college is a time for exploring and trying new things and that they shouldn’t limit themselves. We played our parts well and soon wrought friction and misplaced romantic tension in the newly doomed relationship, while Devyn and I coddled our connection, oblivious to looming disaster. You never expect your best laid plans to come to fruition at a Waffle House.

Granted, I had never been to a Waffle House before college. I always had considered it to be the dirty shady cousin of IHOP. Katherine was a huge Waffle House fan or as she preferred to say “WaHo.” Katherine would insist that we go to WaHo after studying at least every couple weeks, and on this occasion she suggested we invite Devyn and Steven. Inviting them to dinner was risky, and the reward came sooner than expected: Devyn caught my eye, licked her lips, and made a sort of smacking sound. I was shocked that she would do something so clearly flirtatious in front of her boyfriend, but also took it as sort of a challenge. I caught her eye and repeated her lip smack except in a way that was even more overtly salacious. By this time Katherine and Steven had noticed that something was going on between us. I don’t know if Devyn had had too much syrup or if the greasy aroma of onions and cheese had gone to her head, but she gives me a “you are not about to out flirt me, I am a sexy woman and you are just a boy, and to hell if my boyfriend is sitting directly across from me” glance, and then holding my gaze runs her soft, long tongue languorously over her lips and smacks them loudly at me.

The mood at the table was tense. Steven looked at his girlfriend and then looked at me and then back at his girlfriend. Even Katherine shot me a “what the hell are you doing” look. The moment passed, we paid for our meal and left. Later that week Devyn and Steven broke up, and that weekend I met Devyn at a house semi-formal. I told her that I was really sorry about her breakup, to which she said that she was sorry about mine (yes during this time I was dating someone else -- I warned you I wasn’t a good guy). I don’t know if it was the long building sexual tension between us or just our general connection at that time, but what we did wasn’t just dancing – it was foreplay. The next day I woke up with mono.

I always wonder how different my life would have been if I never got mono. I was socially side-lined for the entire month of November, and all of my hard work of September and October fell to the wayside. Devyn couldn’t take me to her house semi-formal because I was too sick to attend. I couldn’t kiss any new girls because I didn’t want to give them mono, so I end up getting back with the girl I had broken up with and who I would date on an off again for 2.5 years. In a surprising twist, Steven and I actually became really good friends. We both were big basketball fans and would go to the home games together; we didn’t miss a game the entire season. I felt bad for trying to steal his girlfriend, but I never told Steven anything about the plan, and soon forgot about the whole ordeal.

That spring, I invited Steven to meet my best friend, Rush, for a drink. Rush and I were up to our usual tricks: talking fast, laughing louder, and telling increasingly ridiculous stories, including one about a beautiful, half-naked runner coming into Rush’s room to deliver a box of homemade cookies, and then leaving without saying one word.

“Do you remember who I ran into after I left your room?”

”Wasn’t it Devyn?”

I felt Steven lift his head to look at me, so I quickly denied it and tried desperately to catch Rush’s eye to let him know to drop the subject. I was too late, and my best friend steamrolled ahead, “Well I would have thought it was Devyn. Haven’t you always liked her?”

Steven is looking straight at me, and I weakly reply “Yes.”

The room fell to complete silence. Steven looks at me, looks back down, takes out his cell phone, opens it, looks at me, closes it, and says “I think I am getting a call, I’m going to go now.” It never rang. Steven and I were never friends again.

3 comment(s) to... “Decade Of Excellence: The Breakfast Club”


Anonymous said...

Oh so painful and funny... this story rings true. Great work. Also, mono is a bitch.

Mono said...

The fact that you all casually mention mono is disgusting.
You should have covered your face with a giant condom.

Trojan said...

Agreed mono, agreed.

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