#714: Did They Know?

November 18th, 2016

Her mouth was full when she yelled, but I can’t speak Spanish anyway.

She yelled at him to knock it off, body language told. Head thrust forward, arms thrust out, elbows cocked inward in sort of a third shrug, third “I can’t believe you’re so stupid,” third “I might backhand you so watch out” gesture.

He laughed and laughed, so she swung her backpack at him.

They were young, and I don’t know if they figured out they’re in love.

It was after dark, but that comes so quickly this time of year. Bus stop by Lake View High School.

She swung her backpack, trying to hit him once, twice, three times. He laughed and leaped back each time, far enough to miss the swing, close enough to give her enough confidence to try again.

She swung and he laughed and I don’t know if they figured out they’re in love.

Whatever love they have is young and puppyish, but shouldn’t be construed as weaker for that. Young love is the stupidest and most tenacious of loves, the type that’s bringing you a smile right now as you cast back 20, 30, 50 years and think of a goofy-faced kid who once made you breathless.

Young love is equal parts romance and convenience. You look at what’s given and then find reasons to justify. If you’re an awkward stick of a kid in doofus gym shorts and there’s an awkward stick of a kid across the way who pulls off the gym shorts slightly better, the heart and hormones race a bit. Then you talk and cobble reasons this person makes your skin flush.

“What? You love this omnipresent musical act as well? You also liked this popular film geared to our demographic? Food, you say, is good? Never have two souls been so intertwined!”

I hope that doesn’t come off as cynical.

I believe you love someone and come up with the reasons later.

A few more swipes at the air with her backpack and the light turned green. The boy never stopped laughing the entire time.

She held out her hand. He stopped laughing and took it.

They walked across the street together, hand in hand. Each other’s future memories, each other’s future ghosts putting smiles on faces in 20, 30, 50.

Another story of young love

That being said, teenagers are jackasses

Everyone younger than me is

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You are currently reading #714: Did They Know? by Paul Dailing at 1,001 Chicago Afternoons.

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