Saturday, January 19, 2013

"My name is George, I'm unemployed and I live with my parents."

Perhaps you watched Seinfeld when it was on.  Perhaps you remember George Costanza.  Hopefully you remember this line:

                "My name is George, I'm unemployed and I live with my parents."

If you don't just watch this:

I bring this up not to point out how brilliantly funny Seinfeld was during its run (and I spent many a study hall passing a piece of paper back and forth with my friend Pat filled with the previous night's episode's quotes) but more to riff off of what George said.

You see, at one time, I also lived at home with my parents.  Two years after college, after living in dumpy apartments, and spending all my money on them, I decided to move back in with my parents for a while, save some money and buy a condo.  I was not unemployed as George was, but I did live at home.  Well, really, it was more like I kept my stuff there.  I didn't sleep there all that often, shuttling between friend's couches.  

During those eight months I didn't date much.  First of all I wasn't much fun then.  My hours had changed at work because I was covering for our building manager while he was recovering from knee replacement surgery and I was commuting a long way.  I used to get to work at 8:15am and lived three miles away.  Now I had to be there at 7:00am and I lived 36 miles away.  I went from waking up around 7:15am and taking my time getting ready in the morning to getting up at ten after five and racing like hell to get downtown before traffic started to suck.  I was not much fun. 

Plus, I was living at home.  Things had changed a bit since my three months at home right after I finish college.  Well, a lot.  My old bedroom was no longer my bedroom.  It was an office.  No bed.  My room had been redone while I was gone, my mom and her husband slowly changing the house now that my sister and I had moved out.  They started with my room, not realizing that in two years I would ask to move back.  They still let me, but instead of being in my old room, my old furniture, my old bed, I was now in my sister's old room.  But they had not redone my sister's old room yet.  Where my room had blue walls, my sister's room was pink.

Yes, I had I pink bedroom.  I lived at home, in a pink bedroom and I was cranky all the time from people at work telling me they were too hot or too cold or so and so parked in my parking spot or I tripped a circuit breaker or the toilet is flooded again, or there's a city inspector here who doesn't know what he is supposed to inspect.

So, again, I didn't date much.
My room wasn't THIS pink.  But it was pink.

One night during this time I was out with a few of my friends.  We were all hopelessly single.  An attractive young lady walked by. At that moment, George Constanza's line popped into my head.  If it worked for him, and he was fat and bald, why couldn't it work for me.   After the girl  passed I shouted "I live with my parents in a pink bedroom."  My friends laughed.  I guess they didn't realize I was serious, so I played off the joke.  Fortunately, the girl didn't hear me.  Or, maybe she did.  Either way, she kept walking.

That started a round of very desperate pick-up lines with that group of friends.  Most of them are unremarkable and totally forgotten, but there was one that I remember clearly.

After dancing with a girl at a bar, my friend Alex (all names have been changed to protect the guilty, er, innocent) bought the girl and her friend a drink.  We talked to them for a little while then asked if they wanted to meet us tomorrow night.  "I have to baby sit my little brother," the one girl said.  (Don't worry, they were NOT underaged).  "Well, maybe we could come baby sit with you," was Alex's reply. Needless to say, the conversation did not last much longer.  Nor did we have any success the rest of the night.  Or weekend.

So, which was worse, my truthful blurting out about my pink bedroom, or my friend Alex's desperate offer to help baby sit?  Truthfully they were both terrible, embarrassingly bad.  But the good news is that we got better over time, maybe not at using pick up lines.  But everyone from that group, that hopelessly single group, is now married.  So, if Seinfeld had made it another season or two, maybe George Costanza would have found happiness.  Probably not, but maybe.
If you are wondering, after eight months I moved out of my parent's house into my my own place.  There were no pink rooms.  Then I got married.  Then we had a daughter.  Her favorite two colors are light pink and dark pink.  Her room is not painted pink.  Not yet at least.

Thanks for reading.

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