Today was a very strange day. Wednesdays have become my "recovery" days; since I'm so busy the rest of the week, I have made a habit of doing a lot of relaxing on Wednesday. That habit pretty much held true today. Other than my one pointless class, I pretty much did nothing until tennis practice and the tennis meet this evening. Our meet with the University of Chicago was at 6:00, so we went ahead and practiced at our usual 4:00. When practice ended, I changed shirts and put on my sandals, expecting to be finished playing for the day. But, as I always do, I stayed around for the meet, to root on the rest of the team. As the coach was announcing the lineup, he looked over at me and said, "Chip, you're going to be playing singles tonight." To which my reply was, "wh..what was that? I don't think I heard you right." So he repeated it. I was pumped...I was actually going to get to play a match. Sure, it was #8 singles, so it wouldn't count toward the meet score, but it was still a match.
Since I wouldn't be playing for at least another hour or two, I decided to go put in an hour of work study at the phonathon. Maybe it was just my attitude since I was in such a great mood, but in about an hour, I made over $1000...not a bad night given the full three hours of work. In my excitedness, I even called Amanda to tell her that I was going to get to play. She had a really bad headache, but said that if she was feeling well enough, she would try to come.
As it turns out, it's a good thing she didn't make it. The #7 singles player for UC claimed to be sick, so he backed out of his match. That's fine...at that point I was thinking, "well, isn't that just my usual luck...I actually get to play, and the guy gets sick." But hey, that's life; it sucked, but I understood.
Pretty much, that meant that their #8 player would move up to play in the #7 position, and there was no one to fill the #8 spot. Which of course, meant no match for me to play. So, I went back to watching the matches and cheering the team. We were ahead 3-0, and close to winning two a couple of other matches (4 points win the meet, so we only needed one more). I decided to go watch the #6 singles match, since it was close and the guy for our team is one of my fraternity brothers. As I was walking over to his court, I saw that the UC #7 singles player, the same player too sick to play a match, was out hitting on one of the courts. He was out there hitting for a good hour. I don't usually get angry about anything, but that pissed me off. I don't think I let on very much that I was upset, but I commented to our coach about it, and he was upset about it, too. Well, we ended up winning the meet 5-2, and I went home just looking forward to practice tomorrow, when I would be able to get back on to the court to play.
I got back to my room, and started talking to Amanda on ICQ. I was telling her about what had happened, and she pretty much tried to tell me not to worry about it, because "things don't always go the way you want them to." Now, of course she was right, but that was about the last thing I wanted to hear at the time. Now, because of her shoulder, she has not been able to play softball. Her passion for softball is pretty much equal to my passion for tennis, and she had to admit that she knew how I felt. I really wasn't in a good mood, and I think I made some curt comment and went into the other room. At the time, I didn't tell her that there was a lot more to why I was in a bad mood than just the tennis meet. It had to do with how I reacted to the situation in light of other things going on in my life. But I didn't want to talk about it at the time, because I didn't think that she really wanted to hear it then. So I went to hang out in another room for like an hour or so.
Rene was in the other room, and I don't remember how it came up, but she also mentioned that she had heard that someone at the Woods was interested in me. I told her that I wanted a name, and since she's cool like that, she told me. She also said that I should really try to meet her if given the opportunity, and that she was "really pretty, and a really nice girl." Apparently, she's a graduate student, and about 23, which is fine, because I'm 22. I was really tired, experiencing a little bit of heat exhaustion (from playing tennis in the afternoon sun and not drinking enough water), and wasn't in a really good mood, so I hope she didn't get the impression that I wasn't interested in meeting this girl. I am, but I just wasn't really able to demonstrate much enthusiasm at the time.
I decided to go to bed, since I was pretty tired, but when I got back to my room, Amanda had sent me another message asking me where I had gone. I replied, and intended to take care of the good-night formalities and just go to bed, but she actually pressed me to talk about what was wrong. So I started going into it.
It was, and still is, really difficult to explain. My mind saw the excitement I experienced when I was told I was going to play, followed by the disappointment right at the moment of fulfilling that excitement, due to a situation over which I had no control, and which could have been prevented altogether had the person involved been honest from the start. Somehow, my mind made an analogy between that experience, and pretty much every experience I've ever had with a girl in my life (which, by definition would be a disappointing experience). Now, you may think that I'm exaggerating, but I'm really not. I could compare that tennis meet with what happened with Sarah, with what happened with other girls at the Woods and at Rose, what happened with girls in high school...and on and on. I've honestly never had a successful relationship (by that I mean, I've never actually had a "girlfriend")...the longest I've ever dated anyone before is three weeks. Most of the time, it doesn't bother me. But sometimes, it just seems like I'm in some never-ending cycle (what the CS majors would call a recursive loop) that I can't find any way out of. The optimist in me says that I just haven't found the right girl yet, but the realist in me wonders if I'll know how to handle myself when and if the "right girl" ever comes around. If all I've ever experienced is failure, how will I ever know how to be successful?
I started thinking about all of that, and it really got to me. I started to explain it all to Amanda, but we were both really tired and needed to go to bed, so we really didn't get to talk as much as I would have liked. Oh well; that's why I have this journal...so that I can air some of these kinds of thoughts and feelings.
It was a lot to digest for one day, and it made falling asleep pretty difficult. But, tomorrow is another day...
Q E D