As another round of weddings approach this summer, I’m reminded of the time I realized that my attraction to younger girls was getting awkward. It happened at my friend Cara’s wedding. Cara has the tendency to be a bit high maintenance. In college I would do crazy things just to watch her reactions. Due to the nuances of our friendship, Cara felt obliged to warn me not to do anything stupid during her black tie Manhattan wedding. I couldn’t attend without doing at least something though. So I showed up in one of those conductor maestro tuxes with tails.
Seating arrangements at wedding dinner tables are as intensely scrutinized as seating arrangements in grade school, or group divisions during field trips. At my table was my accountant roommate Ryan, Cara’s little sister (Alison) and her friend— both attended Tulane at the time. They were a bit younger than us—let’s just say I attended Alison’s Bat Mitzvah when I was in college. Despite the age gap, I was conducting conversation with ease, appropriate because I was in a maestro tux. Eventually we infiltrated the girls’ hotel room.
Right off the bat, we felt old because they gave us a hard time for seeking out Fresh Prince of Belair on Nick at Nite. “We don’t want to see your 80’s shows,” they exclaimed.
Strangely, these girls were perfectly fine with making out in adjacent beds. Ryan and I hadn’t done anything like that since high school—ok maybe early college, but the frat house dance floor doesn’t count. Just as we were about to give in to making out basically right next to each other we heard a rapping at the door and: “Open up. I know you’re both in there!”
It was Cara! The girls rustled us out of their beds and we proceeded to pick the most cliché hiding places possible in the hotel room:
I crouched into the closet, and Ryan simply lied flat behind the back bed furthest away from the door. After what seemed like an eternity, the girls let Cara in.
“Where are they?” Cara exclaimed.
Another voice: “Alison?” It was their mother!
I got that panicky feeling the kids got in Jurassic Park in the kitchen when they realized there was not one velociraptor hunting them but two!
I thought when I had gotten out of high school without being caught mid-makeout by parents, I’d steered clear of moments like this for good.
Cara found Ryan lying behind the bed in his tux.
“I’m ruined!” exclaimed Ryan, in an Enronesque fit. How bad was it for a buttoned up accountant to be caught with a college girl?
The mom found me cowering in the closet, drunk. I covered my eyes and said: “Maybe if I cover my eyes, you won’t see me”.
Before Alisons’ mom could kick my ass, Cara called a little meeting in the hotel room.
“Mom, what are we doing here?” She motioned at us both quaking on the bed. She pointed at my maestro tux, shamefully slung over the chair.
“Look at them. They are fools. We have nothing to worry about, they aren’t going to do anything.”
I’ll never know if Cara really believed we were such losers that we’d blow it with our college girls, but she convinced her mom to let us stay in the room instead of sending us home to our apartment. With that, they left—we were too old to make out in adjacent beds so Alison’s friend and Ryan made out in the bathroom.
The following morning, Ryan and I snuck out the fire stairs (going down 9 stories) avoiding all parents and older sisters. We looked like two zombies with pieces of our tuxes draped upon us. As I stood on the threshold of our cab, my maestro tails flowing in the wind, I took a look back at the beautiful old hotel. I had some serious thinking to do about my attraction to younger girls.
I think they are so cute because when they are just out of college they are so positive: the world is their oyster. They don’t seem jaded or stressed. But sometimes the age gap can lead to awkwardness, incompatibility...or getting hunted by velociraptors. Somehow I need to find a girl that is going to retain her positive attitude forever regardless of her age. Unfortunately, the post-college world has a way of eating away at that. Am I limiting my chances of a serious relationship by going for young, happy-go-lucky girls? When I think of all of the older girls I meet that seem unhappy, am I just confusing their unhappiness with responsibility?