Today, I would like to talk to you all about my favorite crush of all time, who I will refer to as H for the sake of this post. I haven’t had quite as many crushes as my nature would suggest, but the fact that H is my favorite crush says a lot about him, and about me.
I was thinking about H the other day, because I mentioned him in this blog post. And for the past three days, he’s cropped up in my mind more often than he usually does. I couldn’t figure out why I kept thinking about him. Was it the recent super moon, which I am using to blame for basically everything? Am I just going stir-crazy during shelter-in-place? Is it hormonal?
No, I realized today. It’s none of those things. It’s just that H is the best crush, the perfect crush, and for the last 10+ years I have not given him the appreciation he deserves. So here it is. An ode to the perfect crush.
H came to my elementary school at the end of fourth grade. It’s one thing to be new at the beginning of the school year, but an entirely different thing to be new just a few months before summer. It adds a layer of intrigue to an already mysterious circumstance. I still don’t know what caused his family to move, and I never will, unless I out-crazy myself and ask via Instagram DM.
He was in all of the smart kid classes* with me**, ran a really fast mile+, and had beautiful brown skin. After five years of having to waste my crushes on pasty white boys, this was important.
In fifth grade, he started playing football and hanging out with the popular kids. I know, I know. He sounds like every other bozo. How is this a perfect crush? Well, like I said, it’s about the both of us. Of every crush I’ve ever had, he and I spoke the least. In the 15+ years that we’ve known each other, we’ve exchanged a maximum of ten sentences (I’m being generous here)****, which means that I haven’t humiliated myself, and he hasn’t said something annoying that turned me off of him forever. An important victory for me.
When you’re in fifth grade, having a crush on someone who has expressed no interest in you is like having a crush on a celebrity, or like having a crush in college or your mid-twenties. Fifth grade came to a close, and so did my crush on him, when I learned that he had a crush on a popular girl in our grade. It was one thing to not have a crush on me, but to have a crush on someone else??? Inexcusable.
That is, until eighth grade, when I bumped into him in class and he steadied me by holding my waist. I felt sparks fly in a way I can only describe as beautiful and completely unrequited. My crush was reignited once more, especially when I learned from an annoying boy in my math class that H heard me sing at a choir concert and told him I did a great job. But my life is not High School Musical, so nothing came of that.
H now lives on the east coast doing something that seems important for a living, which I know because we’re connected on LinkedIn. I know nothing about the east coast, my last encounter with the region being an ill-fated trip to Manhattan when I was nine, so I can only assume that he lives a fabulous life of eating yogurt on the steps of the Met, identifying as a Carrie-Samantha hybrid, and mitigating crises with a simple “I’m walkin’ here!”*****
I sent a picture of him to my friends, and they truly could not believe that he was a hometown hottie. Not in the way that your friends do when they’re trying to make you feel better about a guy who doesn’t like you (which my friends have to do quite often) – this was more like, “you grew up in Southern California, 15 minutes away from the Bachelor mansion for Christ’s sake, and this was the best your school could do? Give me a break.”
Oh, H. These hoes just don’t get your allure. Thank you for being my perfect crush. I regret a lot of things in life, but not you. Never you.
*Did everyone’s elementary school do this? Separate kids by math and reading ability? It seems kinda fucked now.
**I was smart until the age of 12, I think puberty made me stupid.
+Remember the days when running a mile really fast was what made a guy attractive?
***I’m brown too, so it wasn’t creepy, okay.
**** Our most memorable interaction was after I learned that we both picked Maine for our state project.
Me, bravely: Hey, H! Did you pick Maine for your school project?
H, “who are you?”: yeah.
Me, losing steam: Cool, me too.
*****Meanwhile, I’m here in the Bay Area, dreaming of user acquisition, chugging Soylent, and wearing jeans and vests to important business meetings. We could never be.