When I first learned what carbon 14 dating was — in calculus class my senior year at the ungodly hour of 7:15 because it was first period — I immediately did what every other blossoming writer does: I began to make puns.
My friend created a very simplistic ‘dating’ service on her calculator — because that’s what every blossoming nerd does — that matched you up with a celebrity based on a series of questions relating to physical traits. We called this the Carbon-14 Dating Service and we planned to go global.
Alas, I have not become rich and/or famous and/or Internet famous because of this….yet. Ladies? I have all three live-action TMNT movies on DVD that we can watch on my super-fast computer. But, I have not lost my knack for making puns and setting up improbable dating scenarios.
I often peruse book stores for hours looking for that special someone who will bring joy to my life, hold a decent conversation, and smell nice. (Recently I found Rumo: And His Miraculous Adventures by Walter Moers and Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell. What? I can usually tell if I’m going to like a book by smelling it. No, I don’t smell burning feathers. Get lost.) And I also look for a certain ‘Andy’ at a certain ‘store’ so I can certainly start a ‘conversation’ with him about a certain book ‘selection.’ (My mind doesn’t get that dirty, but I’m sure a few out there are going someplace I don’t even want to fathom. Yep, my English teacher* would be proud that I have discovered the under-used purpose for quotation marks: the pseudo-giggity-suggestion.)
See, when at said bookstores, I like to look at the Staff Recommendations — Recommen-date-tions, if you will — and Andy has recommended for my reading pleasure The Idiot by Dostoevsky. This isn’t the throw-away I-had-to-read-this-in-high-school-so-I-guess-I’ll-recommend-it-to-sound-cultured suggestion, because nobody reads The Idiot until they really, really like Dostoevsky. And it’s not the I’ve-read-Sartre-and-now-it’s-time-for-the-Brothers-K-and-OMG-this-changed-my-life-so-I-must-share-it-with-the-average-housewife suggestion either. I don’t know this Andy, I didn’t put him up to it, so that means I must find him — as I’m sort of already stalking him — and talk to him — much like the rehearsed Kate Beckinsale conversation — and potentially date him.
*”Hmm, yes, when one quotes, one wants to use quotation marks like raisins in a box of raisin bran cereal. One wants them to be scattered throughout the paper like the raisins scattered throughout a bowl of cereal.”
Seriously, you crazy! I imagine Andy as some skinny, blue-eyes, dark haired, tortured artist type who reads classic literature on the bus while listening to his iPod. He has a messenger bag and rides his bike to work.
Or, is it better not to imagine him, because the mystery of his identity is the flint off of which his staff selection strikes the spark? I’m not sure if that sentence could get any more cliche. It’s late, sue me.
Anyway, this is a most unorthodox means of dating.