Monday, April 23, 2007

I Wonder Whatever Happened to My First Love?

He was half Asian, half Caucasian – his hair was thick and black and curly, his eyes were a mysterious blue gray. He spoke with an almost British diction and cadence – I never once heard him drop a final consonant or even use a contraction in his speech. He was sooo smart, and self confident, and handsome. He wore Coke-bottle glasses and had somewhat pallid skin, and was pretty gawky, but oh how I loved him. And weren’t we all gawky at that age?

My first love. I remember him well, and also I remember when I told my mother I was in dire straits over this boy. I pulled her into my bedroom and shut the door, and sat her down opposite me. “What is it, hon?” she asked, concerned at the solemn and sickly look on my face. “Oh mom,” I said, “it’s so terrible. I’m in love. I’m in love with Sean.” I burst into tears, and she nearly choked on her laughter. It’s so hard to be six years old and not have a mother who takes you seriously.

After she dried her tears (of laughter) and mine (of anguish), she told me to go and play, and not to bother her unless I was dying or throwing up. I resolved never to tell her anything again, and carried my private pain in secret, martyred, marked with this humiliation for life, or at least for the rest of the day. In order to prove to the world that I didn’t, in fact, love him with all of my heart and soul and being, I followed him around the playground pretending to film him (like the paparazzi) and called him “Sheepy Sean.” I got the other kids to do it with me, and we pestered him until he cried and told on us.

Sean and I went up through Hickman Elementary School together, and were in the same class every single grade from first through sixth. I never told him about my deep and abiding passion. By the sixth grade I was in love with someone else (Bryan Parrish, I’ll never forget you, XXOO), but Sean and I remained friends, or at least on friendly terms. By sixth grade that almost-British accent sounded affected instead of sexy, and he never did develop a healthy-looking skin color.

So, today, I did it. I googled him. I’m pretty sure this is not him, nor is this. I came up with dozens of other possibilities in my online search but not one seemed right – could the gawky nerd I knew be on the Board of Directors of the LA Arts Council? Could he be VP of Marketing and Sales at a tech company? How about MVP for the Little League? Alas, it is only in my imagination that I will ever see him again. When we left San Diego after sixth grade, I left him and all of the others behind, perpetually twelve years old and awkward in my mind, though of course they are all now in their late twenties, like me. Sean is probably married, probably a dad, and if I had to guess he is probably a businessman somewhere. We were so little in those days, unformed, without direction or much personality. It’s just really hard to guess where Sean Mahon ended up.

Here’s hoping he ended up happy, like me. Peace and love to ya, Sean, wherever you are –


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

But it SHOULD be him . . . "Dive Bar Patron #5" . . . what could be more poetic than having scorned you and ending up a nameless extra in that first fateful Brangelina pairing?