This one is not, actually, about the music. Although it was great. Is it just me, or was Thursday night kind of epic? The Rosebuds at Tir Na Nog? I’ve never been to Local Band/Local Beer before. I’ve never heard the Rosebuds, either, but People Whose Opinions I Respect have. And, well, I had Friday off, and a 10 pm show didn’t seem like a dangerous plan. So I went.
Firstly, I love my entourage for the evening: the kind of people who are lovely inside and out, will catch you up on everything around town, offer en mass to be your wingmen when someone upon whom you have a crush walks by, and not heckle you later for being too shy to speak to him. And aside from my lovelies, there were lots of people we should know in the room. I’m not going to name-drop or anything, but, you know, artists and musicians and full-on hipsters (and I say that with great fondness for hipsters.)
Music was great; I am glossing over that part because this post is not about the very fine music. This post is another near-miss. Another chance to reflect. A chance, really, to come home at 1:3o in the morning and bang my head against the wall, saying, “What? What are you? Just afraid of happiness?”
Because, friends, Handsome Cowboy was there. There, at Tir Na Nog, amidst the artists and hipsters and musicians. He may, in fact, be all three of those things. I have exactly one crush in town. One. And it’s a crush, in the most crushing sense, since he does not know who I am. But he is tall, lanky, boyishly handsome, talented, and by all accounts a nice guy. I was talking to my girls when he walked over and greeted some friends, approximately eighteen inches from my table. The next three hours unfolded as a series of not-quites, almosts, wish-I-hads, and if onlys. There were close calls when I was in serious conversations with others; there were close calls when I almost spoke but got tapped on the shoulder and hugged from behind by others, and close calls when others spilled a beer on my shoe. Worse, there were close calls where I was within range, and could have- no, SHOULD have just said something, and I couldn’t.
It is not, sadly, the first time my inner awkward tween got the better of my poise and confidence. Nor the last; after all my dear ones had called it a night, I was leaning on the wall alone, watching the end of the show. I saw him stroll into my field of vision, pause and check out the scene onstage, hang out a few minutes, and then turn and sit down again at the bar.
And then the band did a “Thank you, Raleigh!” and I held my head up and made the most graceful exit possible, walking with fake poise and confidence and took my high heels right past him and out the door. To recap: I left the most handsome man in Raleigh, sitting at the bar, without finding the wherewithal to speak.
Be it hereby resolved: I am going to stop hiding from happiness, stop dodging opportunities, stop wishing and waiting, and start carpe-ing some diems.