~Friday, March 16, 2012

The Re-Friending

At noon on a Friday Abraham sent me an email: Give me the details on this party tonight... I'm scared!!!

The details were that a it was a friend of mine's birthday and he was throwing a party. The gang was going to be in attendance. The detail that I never considered was that Abraham was going to be nervous.

It had been a long time since we had been at the bar together. In that time I had forgotten that he isn't as sociable as I am. I would flit around all of the tables, and he would remain by his small group of friends.

It had been only the two of us in the past few months, so I saw the version of him I first fell in like with. The version in which he's not a supporting character in the background of a bar, but the star in his own life. I had never even considered that the person who was comfortable and jovial around me would not feel that way in a crowd of new people who were probably judging him.

"You're not nervous about meeting my friends?" he later asked me as we debriefed the night.

"Not really. I think I would be nervous in the car ride over there, but that's it."

"Well I was nervous then too," he admitted. "But it's been building."

***

I arrived at his flat late, and he was in his underwear on the couch watching The Weather Channel. The screen was illuminated in the red of the impending tornadoes. "We're going to die tonight," he said grimly.

"Well let's get going to this party and pick up some beer so we don't die alone and sober," I retorted.

I yanked him off the couch and pulled him into his bedroom to change. He mock whined as he got dressed. He asked me to mend his pants right then and there. Then we couldn’t leave because the tornadoes were coming.

"Listen," I said. "Just be yourself. They'll like you because I like you." And then thinking back to my exes and perhaps why I've waited so long for this moment, "You'll probably like them more than you like me. Besides, the role of the bad guy has already been taken," I added, referencing Katie's boyfriend.

He laughed. I got him in the car. We stopped and picked up our beer. He insisted on paying for it.

Standing in the front yard of my friend's house was a guy I didn't recognize. I opened the door. Inside was Harvey's husband and one of his brothers. We said hello. Then I spied Jenna in the kitchen. We said hello again.

I didn't tell anybody he was coming. Everyone accepted him as he was introduced and didn't question his presence. I wanted to keep everything as low key as possible, unlike last time. I didn't even tell them we were official.

Most people were upstairs playing Rock Band. The topic in the kitchen were the passing tornadoes. People's phones buzzed with weather warnings.

Harvey teetered downstairs into the kitchen to refill her wine glass.

"This is Abraham," I gestured.

"Heeeeeeeeey! I'm on my second glass of wine!" She said. "What took so long?"

"We stopped to buy beer."

"That's not what I meant." She eyed Abraham.

They had some sort of Mexican-standoff stare down across the kitchen. I got nervous. Really nervous. Then Abraham made a light-hearted jab at her, and she laughed.

I had to take baby steps with him at the party. We had to stand in the kitchen, near the beer, and slowly meet people as they walked in for refills. Then we headed upstairs where we stood in the back of the room. It took him 10 or so minutes to be able to fully enter it.

A girlfriend came up to me, "You okay? You're not as outgoing as you normally are."

"I'm just trying to hang back with Abraham and make sure he is comfortable."

Upstairs he met Government Mule, Katie and her boyfriend. Her boyfriend, oddly enough, was welcoming to Abraham and one of the few people who really took the time to talk to him. I think the boyfriend was relieved he wasn't the newest person anymore.

And then my urge for Rock Band took over, and I left him in the back of the room so I could sing a song. The house we were at had a nice set-up: three microphones, two microphone stands, two guitars, a set of drums with the symbols, a professional stool and a keyboard. The whole group of friends is able to play together.

Eventually the party began thinning out and the beers had been drunk and Abraham got more comfortable. He even sang a couple of songs with Katie's boyfriend. The two guys clung to each other because they didn't really know anyone else.

We sat against the wall while other people were taking their turns picking out songs. He had his hand on my leg. It was 1 a.m.

I rested my head on his shoulder, "Baby, I'm losing steam."

"You want to go to Waffle House?" he asked.

"Yeah." I handed him my beer. "Can we go when you finish your beer?"

He tilted the bottle back and finished it. Abraham went to use the restroom and I collected our beer bottles and put them in the recycling. Harvey followed me into the kitchen.

"So I kind of love him," she said. "He didn't talk very much, but when he did, he was hilarious! So his speaking-to-funny ratio is very high!"

I said the only thing I can say about him, "I really like him."

"Bring him around again and we'll do something."

Abraham entered the kitchen and Harvey immediately invited him for Mexican and to play beer pong at her house the following night. He thanked her for the invitation.

We went to the same Waffle House where we had our Valentine's date and then back to his place. I climbed into his bed and onto his shoulder. For the first time that night, I felt at peace. "This is where I want to be," I sighed.

The next morning I got a text from Harvey.

"What's the verdict?" Abraham asked.

"She really liked you."

7 comments:

Erin said...

That's great! It's always nice to have the friend stamp of approval.

Je m'appelle Danielle said...

I love the way he was trying to procrastinate going by not being ready, wanting you to fix something, etc. Although that's usually my role.

Bexxx said...

Aw, the guy is an introvert! I recognize the signs because I just realized this myself.

BTW, just started reading your blog. Quite entertaining and I'm excited to read more.

The Singleship said...

Glad it went so well! You guys should totally double date with Harvey and her husband, they sound like the most fun of the group anyway! :)

Lilly said...

Very cool of you to ease him into it, speaking from a shy introverts p.o.v.

strat said...

Initially, it's the first i wanna have.
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Angela said...

I thought I commented. Glad it went well!

 

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