Do Opposites Really Attract?

I am a goof. I am quite silly. I enjoy a good laugh. Keep in mind, I am serious when I need to be, particularly when there is a deadline looming in the near future. However, I just don’t think life is all that serious and dramatic. In my short little life, I have met many people who can really take a situation and make it one soap opera plotline I will never forget. I enjoy being one of those people who normally keeps those types of situations at a simmer rather than a boil. I will admit I may take certain things to a perfect boiling point of 270 degrees when people are on my last nerve and I am in a rather dramatic mood. I think that is the boiling point – I’m an English and Education major, so it’s been a while since my eyes have seen a number. However, I do not think life is meant to be this big ordeal that we walk through with just a straight face. God gave you teeth for a reason; show off those pearly whites with a grin on your face!

All of this silly banter aside, I recently took a risk. I took the leap to ask someone I had gone on a few dates with for a silly pic. One small step for Erin, one giant leap for all goofs going on dates with serious people worldwide. To illustrate the extremities of this risk, I will give a brief character sketch to introduce the key players. Since I’ve already given a short summary of my nineteen years on this planet, we all know the only one left…

We shall call him Serious Sam. Serious Sam works in a cubicle, like your classic member of the workforce, fighting the good fight from 9-5. When I once asked him what his pet peeve was over dinner, he responded: “when people are not as serious as they need to be.” GASP. I almost wanted to ask him if he knew who he was out on this dinner date with.

 

I’ll be real… I was not fully myself for the first three months of seeing Serious Sam. I think all the seriousness scared me. I was afraid if I cracked a joke or said something strange, he would shake his head in disgust and take off in his car that costs about a years’ worth (or probably more) of my college tuition. I found that when we went out, I would try to be perfect - very Jackie O - sitting in my pearls, plaid, or possibly gingham, appearing very prim and proper. However, this all came to a crashing halt when three months into acting I realized I was exhausted and my Oscar was nowhere in sight. I was tired of saying the “right thing” in a text message or sending the “right picture” over Snapchat. Then something occurred that will forever go down in history as the moment I forced Serious Sam to be weird with me.There is some saying about bringing Muhammed to a mountain, and although I don’t fully know if I should be comparing my shenanigans to famous idioms, I believe that is what I did with Serious Sam. If Serious Sam would not be silly, I had to bring the silliness to Serious Sam. One night Serious Sam and I were texting, following our template of catching up on the goings-on in our lives. Then, something hit me. Call me a pessimist, but I realized that Serious Sam could leave this whole deal just as easily if I were myself as he could if I continued to keep up this act of being “Serious Erin.” I told my mom I was going to start being myself starting from that moment on. All she said was “Good. I just hope he is ready.” Suddenly, I found myself providing Serious Sam with a challenge… to send a silly pic. For those who are not inclined to take silly pics or need a silly pic training course, a silly pic is a picture that in most instances you take of yourself and it is usually not flattering. AKA it is not a glamour shot; It is you being strange. At first, he told me he wasn’t exactly good at taking silly pics. I can’t say I was surprised Mr. I.T. doesn’t take silly pics, but I basically peer pressured him into it. I even sent an example of a silly pic, which featured my stunning face eating a chocolate chip cookie from a couple of days earlier.

By the grace of a miracle, Serious Sam sent back his best attempt at a silly pic. I was so proud. I do not know quite how silly it actually was, but Sam tried his best. Sam may be serious, but he sure does try. In the following weeks, I sent Serious Sam a picture of me feeding my friend’s stuffed hippo a cookie and a picture of a poorly crafted polar bear I doodled when I was bored in class. While it was apparent that Sam was searching for a proper reaction for quite some time, the creative juices finally aligned, and he replied.

I cannot tell a lie - I secretly love seeing Serious Sam’s reactions to my shenanigans. I also love to see that he is slowly but surely becoming conditioned to my strangeness. That may be good or bad for him. I don’t exactly want to “break” him; he needs to have a perception of the normal world still.

For all my fellow goofs reading this, I have good news: Serious Sam is still around. He has not been scared off yet. He might be at some point, but as of right now, he is still around. Side note: If Sam really does succeed in his silly pic training, perhaps we could call him Sammy. That most certainly will not be happening too soon…Sam still needs to perfect his silly pics.

Being weird in front of someone you are seeing is scary, let alone encouraging that person to be weird alongside you. However, I think that Serious Sam and I may be that solid balance, that good equilibrium. Us goofs need our serious souls. I remind Serious Sam to be silly, which in all honesty, I think Sam really needs. Sam needs to be lifted off the ground (or from the floor of his cubicle) to be with the goofs up in the sky sometimes. When us goofs float up into the sky with our weirdness, our serious souls like Sam bring us back down to Earth, which may be just what we need too.