Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Stars, Doubts, Girls

The other day Ash, Jake, Joey, and I were dinking around the office talking, when someone brought up the idea of dating people with your same birthday. On the one hand, it could be neat and really really convenient (as far as remembering one more important date). But on the other hand, pointed out Ash, it might be a form of cosmological incest.

As the only one in the room that had actually pulled this off, I can say it does have a certain creepiness to it. I once dated a girl exactly one year younger than me, and it was weird, but not in the way you might think. The thing was that we had way more in common than our birthday.

For one, we met at a concert. A concert we were both performing in. I was standing in the wings after performing my song for the BYU Guitars Unplugged concert a few years ago when I noticed that the girl presently performing was pretty good. I mean, I don't want to rag on girls or anything, but the truth is that it's kinda rare to meet a guitar-playing girl who actually has good technique, good rhythm, and a good voice. And good song-writing skills.1 She had red hair, and this pink light was shining down on her like magic, making her all strawberries-and-cream.

Which brings me to the next thing we had in common: good looks.

Tom and I tearing it up at the concert.
You can't tell, but under my jeans my left leg
is in a splint since I had torn my ACL skiing
just a week or so before this.

Anyway, my brother got her number for me2 since he worked at the same place as her, and we went out a few times. I remember we went on a walk once early on and we were asking each other questions—you know those first-date-ish questions like "What's your favorite ____?" or "If you could change one thing about yourself what would it be?"—well, I'd ask her one of those and silently be thinking up my own answer, and then she'd say exactly what I was thinking. It was weird. I asked her when her birthday was, and when she said, "June 11," I died. It was like I was falling in love with myself; it felt so wrong—but I was so attractive.

We sat in my living room and sang "Somethin' Stupid," crowding together around a sheet of lyrics as I shuffled out the chords on my guitar. She fell into the harmonies so naturally as to melt my bones.

Sometime midweek I realized that her initials were S. G. My initials, not counting my middle name, are S. G. Walking to pick her up for our next date, I reeled off D-names in my mind: Danielle, Darcy, Daphne, Deborah, Diane, Dawn, Dorothy, Drew. SDG: Stephen David Grover. SDG: Super Dateable Girl. June 11, 1981. June 11, 1982. SDG: Sensible Days Gone.

Sudden Death, Grover.

Sense of Doom Growing.

I knocked on her door, and practically before saying hello I demanded to know her middle name, sure it was Desdemona, Deliliah, Davida.

"I don't have one," she smiled.

"Oh," I said.

So we were S. G. and S. D. G. 1981 and 1982. We went out a few more times, but nothing ever really happened. Perhaps we would've been star-crossed, ill-fated, cosmologically unsuited—we never got far enough to find out. Something Didn't Go. That's always been the real mystery for me anyway: why some loves catch and some don't. How all the tumblers can line up but still the key won't turn. It's almost a miracle when it does, when one person likes another at the same time that that person likes them—it's a shuttle-launch window, a total solar eclipse. It's a real miracle, and yet it happens uncounted times every day as our planet tumbles and rolls on to the stars.

1 Before you jump to conclusions, let me explain. It's rare to find anyone, male or female, that combines all these skills. It seems like no one gets through college without learning a few chords and how to play "Free Fallin'" or that Green Day song that was the emblem of everyone's senior class a few years back. But so few ever take it further, ever learn how to really play. And given that the proportion of guitar-playing males to the skilled guitar-playing males is completely bonkers, and taking into account that there are that many fewer girls than boys picking up guitars to begin with, it follows that there are very very few girls who can do more than play third-rate Jewel covers.3
2Actually he got a whole date with her. What a bro: he asked a girl out on my behalf. That's going above and beyond.
3 If you were born after, say, 1989, change "Free Fallin'" above to "Wonderwall," "Green Day" to "Dashboard Confessional," and "Jewel" to—I don't know—"Michelle Branch"?


Sarah said...

I hate you're new layout. My whole comment was deleted b/c I had not signed in yet. dumb new comment format. What, were you tired of looking at Boss Hogg?

Anyways, what I had said was... I sat next to a guy in high school and we hit it off instantly. It was like we had known eachother for years. One day I asked him his birthday and he said February 23rd. That was it. At that point we became connected by something deeper than friendship. I don't know why sharing a birthday with someone does that. It's weird.

I miss ol' Mark Sepeda.

David Grover said...

How's this? I didn't change the format—it just changed itself.

Jennifer said...

My parents-in-law have the same birthday. Seems to work for them for almost 32 years.

I have met maybe 5 people in my life with my birthday (or heard about them.) They haven't impressed me much. Is that a self-commentary?

Just so you know I read that first line, "The other day Ash, Jake, Joey and I were drinking..." The post makes sense that way, too.

The Hippo said...

I had the same birthday as 2 of my elamentry school teachers, and i hated both of them. but i hated most older people at that time.

Janssen said...

For perhaps the first time in my entire life, I am on the older side (prior to 1989). And yet I am a Green Day fan AND a Dashboard Confessional fan (although not of that particular Green Day song which makes me think "graduate and get this crap over with already" (Bart would not approve of me saying "crap")).

And that line about the tumblers lining up but the key still not turning is just brilliant. You are a marvel, S.D.G.

Jennifer said...

So, hippo, what's changed?

The Hippo said...

I hate you

Dave said...


I love this post. I have some comments, though. Let's order pizza tonight and go over it. Also, you can help me with my reverse pretend crush post. Is it fair that I live with the contest judge?

Jennifer said...

NOT FAIR, DAVE! Is it fair that I'm related to the contest judge?

Queen Bee said...

My sister is about to (3 weeks)marry a guy (never met him, but I hear he's great!) with the exact same birthday. Same day. Same year, born about 20 miles apart. Too weird.

kimberly said...

So this might seem odd, but hi! This is Kimberly from the good ol' Mission Bend days. I just blog hopped to your blog in a fit of boredom caused by waiting. Waiting for this download to finish so I can (illegally) watch Criminal Minds and waiting for my (very late) dinner to come out of the oven.

(My mom started a blog yesterday and your awesome sisters comment on it. Hence blog hopping and finding myself here!)

I just wanted to say that your blog is hilarious. The Reverse Pretend Crush is a thing of beauty! I'm sure it's flawed, I just haven't thought of how. Yet. All I can say is, I must have been thinking that this morning because I matched beautifully. Perhaps it was all because of Spikes, that random spikey haired guy who always comes through the library...

Or not.

So anyway. Awesome blog! And I promise I'm not some random stalker person!

Steve Morrow said...

I really, really hate to do this, but I'm a fact checker. I'm going to writer a blog entitled, fact check universe in which I fact check all of the stars, planets, and #2 pencils (there's no way they're ALL #2; we can't tell the difference). And this post is uh-mazing spelled any way you want; But, there is one tiny detail that is wrong. One little teensy, teensy, little fact problem. Not a mistake, but a discrepancy: it was you, Ashley, and ME! Not Jake! For real. But the reason why I'm so bummed out about this small misplaced fact is because this means I'm not in this post. I have one opportunity to get on this blog and and you give it to Jake. What else have you given to Jake? Does he have my watch? I've been looking for my watch. Anyway, just in case. But this is a good one. I can't wait to get my postcard!
Your friend (who was there on the day of this story),


amy said...

CANNOT pass up the opportunity to make the comment that i do, in fact, have the same birthday as you.

(and just because i've been composing on my "dark" blog, i'm going to say this)

its crap.

unless it somehow cosmically allows me a fairness handicap for the reverse pretend crush business.