My son has a girlfriend. I'm a little jealous. Not that he has one, but that he accomplished this task in his junior year of high school. When I was a junior, I was busy stalking the cheerleader who had been a flag girl with the band in the previous year. I had taken the words she had written in the back of my sophomore annual "stay in touch" as some sort of invitation to chase after her. That's why I invited her to the Homecoming Dance the next Fall. When she accepted, I figured I was on the right path. I wasn't. She had no real interest in me beyond being "just good friends." It was a refrain with which I had become familiar. I might have taken my lumps and simply moved on, but I remained persistent.
I talked to her friends. I sent her notes. I sent her friends notes. I had my friends talk to her. I sent my friends notes to try to get them to talk to her friends. All of this pamphleteering had no effect. Well, it did have the effect of putting my friends, her friends and her off me for a good long time. All these people got very tired of me whining and moaning about the situation. I got tired of hearing myself whining and moaning about the situation. Eventually. That's when I decided to move on. "There are plenty of fish in the sea," was the wisdom that was shoveled my way. That's the way I tried to envision my world: plenty of fish. Those fish, I inferred, were girls. All I had to do was keep casting my line and sooner or later I was going to snag one of them. A girl, not a fish.
That's what I did for what seemed like forever. Another year passed. That's forever when you're in high school. And you don't have a girlfriend. When my son started down that familiar path starting in his ninth grade I looked at this as a potential bonding opportunity. "Women, right? Can't live with 'em, can't live without 'em." Except he really could live without them. He did pine a little from time to time, mostly when his friends started to pair off with their own love interests and started to give him grief. He had his share of near misses. That's a little joke. He rolled with the "just good friends" speech, and stayed positive. In that first week of May, before his junior year was out, he got a girlfriend.
And now the next phase: Keeping the girlfriend. Stay tuned.