Case and Willo
For my legions of fans eagerly awaiting news regarding my courtship of Ms. O'Brien, enjoy. And for the crazy Google-watchers among you, just scroll on by — this is as bloggy as blogging gets.

Sunday I went out farther on the limb of honesty than I've ever gone, and in one grand gesture let a girl know about my crush on her. In her words:
"OK - so to top it all off, I have to spill that Eric gave me a Valentine's gift!! Holy moly!! I was completely surprised, and totally delighted because it's the yummiest sweetie treat from this awesome new bakery called Gâteau et Ganache... The Raspberry Sweethearts and the Strawberry Marshmallows. YUMM!!!! Eric had me blushing... what a total surprise. :) Thank you!!! xoxoxoxox"
It was a fantastically uncomfortable moment — my heart-rate had skyrocketed and I must have been visibly shaking. Here's the dialog, as clearly as I can recall:
Me: "Oh, this is for you." (I hand her the pink bag)
W: "Um, what's this for?"
Me: "Use your imagination!"
W: "No way!!! Eric Case, are you courting me?!"
Me: "Um... yes!"
I'm surprised I didn't fall out of my chair when she asked for a hug! After a bunch of smiling and tasting the sweets though, she softly whispered,

"But I don't think you're my type..."


At this point I should have pulled a Mary Swanson (context) and asked what my chances were. But my heart had already fallen through the floor and I somehow mustered a weak smile. See, my cynical side was expecting this, so I was already somewhat prepared.

The rest of the evening was still lots of fun though, because we listened to a bunch of music and laughed and geeked and even went out for dinner. The conversation we had was wonderful and fascinating, and we got to chat about our pasts, our spiritualities, travels, aspirations...

She finally headed home around 9:30pm, and we parted with hug like none I've ever experienced — wow, I can still feel it. I assumed that was the end of that, meditated for a bit, then fell into an uneasy, disturbed slumber.

Yesterday afternoon however, Valentine's Day, a book of an email from her arrived in my inbox, and my pulse leapt again. A few words immediately jumped out at me: friendship, friendship, platonically, friends.


(lots of stuff in there had me grinning ear to ear though — it was an awesome email, thanks W!)

So now I get to wait for the infatuation to diminish sufficiently so we can hang out again, without me tripping over things and missing heartbeats. (this should only take a week or so, I reckon). It's funny what this process is actually involving:
  • unsubscribing from her site feed in Bloglines so I won't read her blog
  • removing her from my contact list at Flickr so I won't see her photos
  • deleting her from my buddy list on AIM so I'm not tempted to IM
  • further contact management at other social Internet services I've forgotten about
(I'm sure I'll redo these soon enough, once my heart has settled a bit...)

"We're just so great together!" my mind continues to plead...

Us @ Methuselah

But the journey *is* the reward, even when it's a year-and-a-half in the making.


Update: a followup post from W, as well as linkage from Biz & Mai.

At 2/16/2005 12:02 AM, ~C4Chaos said...

man you still had the clarity to do vipassana after that?! all in due time. godspeed.

At 2/16/2005 12:06 PM, Adam Lasnik said...

My goodness. You're either crazy, or just way more brave than I. I've already gotten in trouble from my personal musings on my blog, and I've been leaning towards giving up on posting personal stuff entirely.

Perhaps you're just more secure in your job and yourself, and for that, I salute you.

I also hope Ms. O'Brien reconsiders... or, on a slightly different route, you end up meeting someone else wonderful soon.

Best of luck, and thanks for baring your soul online when so many of us no longer have the guts to do so.

At 2/16/2005 3:29 PM, Buzz Andersen said...

Story of my life man, story of my life :-).

At 2/16/2005 5:36 PM, ali. said...

eric case. my heart hurts! but in a good way, really!!! if ever there is a boy in my life who crushes on me with as much glee and earnestness as you did/do/whatevs, i will be a v. lucky girl.

see, i told ya you'd have to take risks someday! listen to ali, she's familiar with this heartbreak stuff. *wink*

i'm proud of you! *huggggs*

At 2/16/2005 6:52 PM, roy said...

eric you're the man. you know i understand what's up. by the way you'll never believe who has been calling me...

At 2/17/2005 1:49 PM, Anni said...

Ooooh, Eric. I was so keeping my fingers crossed for you! You deserve lots of credit for your courage and honesty.

At 2/18/2005 6:45 PM, paperfroggie said...

What a great post, Eric. I feel for you.

As I'm sure one side of your brain knows, great love requires great risk. Hope that truth is enough to quiet the other sphere.

The upside is you know a whole lot more about your capacity for something truly fulfilling. A lot of people go their whole lives without getting that far. :-)

At 2/21/2005 11:11 AM, Elizabeth said...

Eric if there ever was a time for you to change your mind about drinking....

I'm proud of you for taking the chance. Don't give up. Of course if you do feel like giving up and quitting your job and wallowing in despair for four months on the trail with me, the invitation stands!


At 2/22/2005 9:55 PM, Ann McCormick said...

Oh, Eric, what a wonderful story, the very essence of Valentine's Day. All the way through, you are so wonderfully you. I love you. Ann


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