• Some people find love by accident. Others find nothing but trouble
As a single, red-blooded male, I’ve become a sort of an expert at “meet-cutes”. You know, those scenes in a movie in which two people who will form a future romantic couple meet for the first time. Basically, it’s the art of picking chicks up under unusual, humorous or cute circumstances.
Meet-cutes come in all shapes and sizes — a witty pick-up line (definitely not “Are you an orphanage? Because I want to give you kids!”), giving a girl a ride home, a misunderstanding that ends in a laugh, and of course, the good old overused bumping of heads when a boy and a girl bend to pick up something usually the girl dropped. Like books in a library (wink, wink).
A good meet-cute creates memories that last for ages, something worth narrating to your grandkids over hot cocoa and muffins. These moments are supposed to be accidental or coincidental, and spontaneous. But sometimes, meet-cutes can be forced.
Otherwise, how do you explain chemistry on a blind date, where both parties strive so hard to make it work? Personally, I’m not a fan of arranged romance. The stakes are already set even before you start fudging your carefully rehearsed lines or drinking the lemon water meant for washing your hands at a restaurant.
The other day, I was embroiled in another less conventional meet-up that ended very unlike the way I had hoped it would. This meet-cute (more emphasis on “meet” than on “cute”), is the classic fender-bender. It’s supposed to go something like this:
Boy drives too closely to girl’s car. Girl gets to a traffic light and brakes. Boy (slightly) rams into girl’s car. Boy and girl get out of their cars. Girl is utterly horrified; boy is properly apologetic. Boy says he’ll be glad to cover the cost of repairs for the dinged fender right there and then. Oh, girl is short on time? How about they exchange contacts and arrange to meet later? If boy plays his cards right, he just landed himself a first date.
My fender-bender ticked most of the above boxes, save for a crucial few. I didn’t just dent Morgan Ochieng’s bumper, I completely caved it in. While I was the archetypal bender full of “profound” apologies, Morgan Ochieng came out with phone, like a lethal weapon, in hand.
“Babe,” she said, “you won’t believe this. This stupid baboon just rammed into the back of your Mercedes Benz S-Class.”
I’m not certain of Babe’s response, but from the look on Morgan’s face, I could tell I was screwed. And when Ochieng, who was the black half-brother of The Undertaker, arrived half an hour later, it was unquestionable how much pig doodle I was swimming in. Suffice to say, a night in a police cell really set my head properly on my shoulders.