Big Guy meets his romantic rival
She’s a raven-haired beauty whose soft brown eyes and gentle spirit caught Big Guy’s eye before he could even focus. And she, an 11-year-old who’d never much cared for babies, was smitten with his exuberant goofiness.
And so it was for four years with these polar opposite kindred souls.
He’d rush to her side the second she was in sight. They’d disappear into her room, playing KoRn CDs and giggling for ages. She entered a Goth phase; his favorite color became black. She had a Jonathan Davis birthday cake; he wanted an “On David” birthday cake, too. Her cell phone ring tone said, “Hello, Moto!” and that was Big Guy’s first intelligible phrase.
We always knew, of course, that the day would come when Big Guy’s First Love would find a first love of her own. And we wondered how Big Guy would handle it.
Her mom broke the news to me shortly after Thanksgiving: First Love had a boyfriend. And it was only a matter of time before her guy and Big Guy came face to face.
It happened just days after Christmas, when her mom invited us to dinner. “C’s going to come,” she warned.
I entered their house with all my usual subtlety. “Hey, C, your competition’s here,” I shouted.
Big Guy barreled in and jumped into First Love’s arms. Then he spied C. “Who’s he?” he asked, a little accusingly.
“He’s my friend,” First Love said, tactfully revealing less than the truth. “And he likes KoRn!”
Which was points in C’s favor, though Big Guy remained suspicious. Suspicious enough that, a bit later, when C reached for First Love’s hand, Big Guy grabbed the other. And there she was, a human tug-of-war rope taut between suitors.
“You appear to have two men fighting over you,” her mom said. “Make that one and a half,” C retorted, letting go of First Love’s hand to chase Big Guy through the house.
And that was when they bonded. For the next two hours, they played tag, guitar, drums. They wrestled, rough housed and listened to music – KoRn, of course. They went on walks and shot basketballs. First Love had to be wondering how she’d suddenly gone from two guys to none.
By the end of the night, the bond was tight. “C, I love you!” Big Guy said as we left, jumping into his former rival’s startled arms. C bear-hugged him back.
I’ve known First Love since she was 8, and even then she showed amazingly good judgment for a third-grader. Her pick of C as her first boyfriend confirms that – any teen-age boy who has patience to put up with a rambunctious 4-year-old who becomes a fifth wheel on a date has a lot going for him.
And for now, at least, Big Guy has accepted the boyfriend as part of the package. Even admitted tonight, as he chatted on the phone with First Love, that he’d missed C lately.
But C better not plan on popping the question any time in the next 20 years. Big Guy will lock onto First Love’s train and drag her out of the church. There’s only so much sharing he’s willing to do.
Copyright 2008 Debra Legg. All rights reserved.