Wednesday, March 31, 2010

How I Met Your Father: Part Two

So where were we?  Ah yes, we had just run into each other on a very random Saturday night at F&M's  (which by the way is the second greatest bar in NOLA, after the Gold Mine, of course).  You see the funny thing about being at F&Ms that night was that it was the first time I had ever been there.  It was the place of legends, and I had been dying to go, but my fake id said I was a five foot three Latina girl from San Diego.  It worked on the few occasions I needed it, but I had never tempted the fates with trying it at F&Ms.  But that night with my high school friends I decided to give it a shot.  What do you know, they knew the bouncer and we walked right in.  Higher powers at work, I believe!

As you know from part one of this story, while we seemed to enjoy each others company in the late night joints of New Orleans, I took from the fact that Mark had not asked for my number to mean that in the light of day he figured a 19 year sorority girl had no place in the world of a 24 year old medical student.  That just seemed so old and mature to me.  I figured his friends were debating what color beige to paint their dining rooms while I was debating whether our party tees should be light pink or bright pink.  Two different worlds we lived in, or so I thought.

I had lots going on to distract from this dreamy guy I was hoping would come my way again.  The Thursday night following our night at F&M's, my friend Heather's BF was competing in the student activities version of "Who Wants to be a Thousandaire."  My roomie Sarah and I were not going to miss his big chance at fame and fortune, so we headed to the Danna Center for dinner and Heather's BF's gameshow appearance.  Such fun is college!  After it was over, the three of us mosied on back to our room where we figured we'd get to studying.  I remember Sarah walking into our suite first with Heather and me following behind.  The door to our room was open so I couldn't see that a message had been left on our dry erase board.  Sarah very calmly says, "Jen, Mark Allen called."  I stopped and scolded her for being the meanest friend a girl could have.  "Sarah, that isn't even funny!!!"  And she angled the door so I could see the board and said, "No, Haley left a message on here that Mark Allen called and would like for you to call him."  WHATTTT!!!  The three of us stood there with our mouths gaping open and we began jumping up and down silently at first until it really hit us.  And then the squealing began.  In my mind we were holding hands and skipping in a cirlce singing "Mark Allen called, Mark Allen called."

But what do I do?  I had been taught that girls don't call boys.  Did your mothers teach you that as well?  Do I call, do I not call?  I was so nervous, I was clammy and sweating.  And when I finally decided not returning his call would be rude and silly, I did it.  Of course, I did it with Heather and Sarah sitting on the couch watching, but I did it.  I told him I had received a message that he called, and I was just politely returning his call.  He said that he wanted to know if I was busy that evening and was free for a drink.  As I'm mouthing this to the girls, my head was racing.  A drink?  Do I say yes?  What does this older boy want from me?  I mean, I watched Friends.  I knew what older guys were like.  But, I found myself casually accepting and pretending like it was no big deal and that I was often accepting requests for drinks with boys of all ages.  "Good, he said.  I'll see you at ten." 

After much searching for an outfit that said "I like you, but I'm really not trying hard" I was off to meet Mark Allen at the front desk.  He assumed that since I had recently been at F&M's my id was solid and took us to Philips (also one of the legendary bars that the older DGs talked about).  I was so nervous they wouldn't let me in.  How awful would that have been?!?!  But they did and we proceeded to the bar.  We started talking and before you know it, it was well after midnight.  It was the craziest thing because I had expected to have little in common to talk about, but instead the conversation was so smooth and so natural.  And it was the little things that made me like him so much more than I thought I already did.  For instance, he kept calling me gal.  I thought that was the funniest thing.  He talked about his family and school and growing up in North Dakota.  And when it was time to leave I felt like I had known him a lifetime. 

Right as we were heading out, he said, "Well, gal, I didn't just ask you here to have a drink."  My heart stopped.  What is he going to say next?  What could it be?  "The med school is having their annual formal, The Cadaver Ball, and I wanted to know if you'd be my date."  HOLY COW!!!!  Are you serious?  I could barely stand the excitement.  I very aloofly said, "Um, sure that sounds like a lot of fun,"  but inside I was doing the cirlce skippy dance from earlier! 

And with that we left Philips.  And in all of the excitement I tried to get into the wrong car!!!  So embarassing.  But we had a good laugh, and now it just seems like a fitting part of the story.

I got back to the room and was basically doing cartwheels.  I called my mom the next morning and explained that we had a very important shopping trip to schedule.  I remember telling her that he was just so nice.  He was the kind of guy you married.  I don't think I thought I would eventually be married to him, but I knew that he was the kind of guy you settled down with. 

That Saturday my mom took me to Saks and we tried on a million dresses.  I wanted it to be just right - not too young, not too old, not too flashy, but something really special.  We landed on a BCBG charcoal satin ball skirt paired with this beautiful light grey sweater with a hint of beading at the top.  I loved it!  So much so that every day (alright, maybe every other day), I would put on my outfit and parade up and down our hall stopping by my friends' rooms singing "I'm going to the Cadaver Ball."  I'm sure this got old to everyone on our floor, but to me it was just as exciting as it was the day before.

It was a fairy tale dress made for a fairy tale evening.  I couldn't wait to go on my first date with Mark Allen! 

Tomorrow, I'll fill you in on our first date and get to the part about knowing he was "The One."


  1. I'm on the edge of my seat! Can't wait to hear about the ball tomorrow!


  2. I love this!!! Can't wait to hear more, I LOVE how proud and excited you sound, this is great!

  3. This is the best, I am obsessed with your little love story. Did I miss something or are you writing a book? It is awesome! So easy to picture that scene of you on the phone and mouthing the conversation to your friends. So cute. Love ya girly!

  4. Eek! This is so much fun to read. I am just grinning ear to ear. :)

  5. You are a fabulous story teller! I am loving reading these posts! They are completely brightening my day :) Ready for tomorrow's post!

  6. I'm doing a circle dance waiting to hear the rest:)

  7. Loving it as this is truly a story book!:)

  8. This is so fun to read...can't wait for more!

  9. love it! def. need to post a photo from the night.. i am dying to see the dress

  10. Simply Southern, I wish we still had pics from that night! Unfortunately, all our pre-Katrina photos flooded. But, I had one photo from our second big date to the DG formal on my desk at work. I think it is my favorite picture of the two of us. It's so special to still have that! If I get brave enough to take it out of the frame, I'll scan it and post it!



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