How sad that my series on the men I never dated is coming to an end.
Today’s story is fairly short, but it’s unique because this was the first guy who met me in person first (no online stuff first) and seemed interested in getting to know me (perhaps ‘seemed’ is the operative word here).
Back in 2004, I was a member of Curves, this fitness centre (this was no gym) where you’d go in and use their series of machines for 30 minutes every other day and they guaranteed that you could lose weight by doing this circuit three days a week. Curves was located close enough to my home that I would walk there and back. The walks became a good time to be on my own and just chill. I liked the ease of the workout, and the fact that it was for women only. After a year I had lost about 10lbs and when you have about 80lbs to lose, you wouldn’t think that 10lbs is a big deal but it was. It was the first time I actually noticed that I had lost weight.
That Christmas, I went to the Naija party that the Yoruba association in our city puts on every year. These parties are always full of lots of men…if you like your men, abi boys, 10 years of age or younger. The guys my age, if they come, usually show up and make a beeline for the cool Naija girls who they are all friends with and they proceed to have a great time while I sit and talk to my sister, my parents and my parents’ friends, and eventually get roped into helping clean or something like that.
At these parties, people who recently graduated from highschool or university receive an award from the association and it was my year to receive my award. I was wearing a top that was tight on me the last time I wore it so I was feeling damn good. I went up and got my award with the other recipients and had my name read out and felt like I was so cool.
(Yes, it doesn’t take much.)
So anyway, fast forward to the end of the night. My parents are one of the founding families of the association, and the only perk I’ve noticed is that we get to help clean up. So, as I’m cleaning up, Uncle Yomi comes up to me with this guy with him and he introduces me to Gbenga and goes on about how we Nigerians have to stick together or whatnot, then he leaves us. I smile at Gbenga and he congratulated me on the award, asked me what I studied. I tell him and he mentions that his sister studied the same thing, but she lives elsewhere now. As we’re talking, I’m folding up a table and he helps me fold it up, then he helps me take it to where it is stored and we’re still talking. I don’t know what was up with me that night but I was all confident, acting like I was the sh!t, like guys talk to me all the time or something.
Anyway, he never asked for my number or anything and I thought I’d see him again so we parted ways without exchanging info.
I attended a few events after that and never saw him, so I decided to take things into my own hands: I emailed Uncle Yomi and asked him for Gbenga’s email address. He didn’t have it. When I saw him (Uncle Yomi) next, I asked about Gbenga but typical absentminded man that Uncle was, he had no idea who I was talking about.
I like to think that poor Gbenga is out there looking left and right for me but we all know the truth: he’s moved on and married some fine girl who was smart enough to make sure he had her contact info before they parted ways!