Wednesday 12 January 2011


The other day I ran into someone I hadn’t seen in years.  As I was watching him approach with his two children, I had that moment where time slows down and your brain clicks into deductive mode on how to handle the situation. Or shall I say, how I wanted to handle the situation. I always find the event of seeing people you haven’t seen in dog’s years an interesting one, or in some circumstances an incredibly painful one. For me, there are several ways one can deal with the long lost acquaintance.

The first one I call, “it’s been too long, so forget it option.” In short, you barely remember their name, and recalling this would take too much brainpower, so you dive under the table you're sitting at and put the breadbasket on your head. Then you pray they don’t spot you, especially with a basket over your head. It can turn out to be embarrassing if they do, but the no fail, 'oh god, I lost my contact lens' should get you out of this mess.

The second one I call the ‘leave it up to the cosmos' option; you see them, you wait till they catch your eye, and then you see if they recognize you.  If they don’t, you let them walk on by and then of course you check them out from the back to see how much weight they have put on to make yourself feel better about the junk in your own trunk. [I kid I kid].

The third option is to wait until they see you, and then you take initiative and call out their name. This of course is contingent on how you look that day. If I look like utter crap, I’m sticking with option one. The other day when I saw the guy I hadn't seen in years, I was feeling especially social and called to my friend as he approached. He didn’t recognize me, which of course annoyed me, as I could've gone with option two (are you confused yet?); but I decided I had to follow through as he and his two kids were staring at me and the King. I then told him who I was - he remembered thank god - and then he launched into our history for his children.  We wrote songs together, nothing too exciting. 

Following the introductions, there is always that moment where you exchange what you’ve each been up to for the last ten years (and try to make it sound very interesting); you make a joke about the past, comment on how well you’ve both aged, (this can be tough if they look one hundred years old and have suddenly grown a horn out of the center of their forehead), and then look for the polite segue to wrap this thing up. It sounds terribly mechanical I realize, but there is an art to social interaction - at least as far as I’m concerned.

Of course all of the above fails to mention the individual that is either more than an acquaintance, or an archenemy – I realize I am starting to sound like a Batman comic. These two types you can lump into one category of treatment. In short, you must look HOT, be on your game that day, and make the last ten years seem like a flipping uber successful joy ride pleasure cruise. I think if I ever run into an ex that dumped me I shall let the King do the talking – that face can render anyone into a state of envy.

Of course, if on that day you are sporting a zit on your forehead the size of a boil, I suggest you revisit the breadbasket idea. Courage be damned when pride is on the line.
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