I haven't blogged about my run with Particularly Beefy Guy because, as it turns out, I'm human and therefore have this protective mechanism that blocks out memory of extreme pain. And so I certainly don't remember him rubbing my back as I dry heaved against a tree trunk after 800 metres. Or the fact that I finished our little 3 k run in true Comrades-style: I crawled the last 200 metres, with Particularly Beefy egging me on, "You can do it, Pant. Nearly there. Do it for The Daughter. Make her proud.". "Yes, I will tell her that you love her.". (The crawling position certainly suits me. I was at eye level with a pair of the hottest legs I've seen since my boarding school days.)
So, last night my phone rang. And when I saw Particularly Beefy's name pop up, I turned my phone over and the TV up so I could hear Will & Grace over M C Hammer. But guilt - nay, curiosity - got the better of me. And I texted him back.
The Pant: If this is about running, I'm sick. I've got double pneumonia in one lung. Cough cough. But if it's not about running, then I think you should phone back.
And when my phone rang a second time, I airpunched. Then I remembered how naff airpunching is. Then I composed myself. Then I answered.
The Pant: Hiiiiiiiiiii! (Very dignified.)
Particularly Beefy: Hi. Sorry to call so late. I'm just in your area and wondered if I could pop in for coffee.
The Pant: Or a drink? You could pop in for a drink.
PB: Are you up? I mean you're not in your pyjamas, moments away from climbing into bed, are you?
TP: No! (Emphatic. While de-wedgying sleeping shorts from bum.). Come over.
PB: I'll see you in 5.
(5? I had "5" in which to de-pyjama, re-make-up, and dress in manner of I've-just-come-home-from-work-but-always-actually-look-this-hot.)
I opened the door about 7 later.
Particularly Beefy: You wear that to work?
The Pant: What? (I looked down and thought that, perhaps, a pair of fu*k-me boots and a micromini would not quite cut it as teacherly work attire.)
PB: Look, I don't mind (yes please) but surely it's illegal to teach impressionable youths dressed like that.
TP: Not if you don't get caught.
PB: How can you not get caught?
TP: Details, Particularly Beefy. Details. I'll dress like a nun, tomorrow, okay? You want a drink?
PB: Yea - a beer would be nice.
With drinks in hand we relocated to the lounge. He put his beer down, took my hand in his and looked me in the eye. (This was behaviour that spoke of something very cool or something very uncool.)
PB: Look, I wanted to come over to tell you that I don't think we should run together anymore-
TP: You're run relationship breaking up with me?
PB: I really need to focus on my Comrades training right now and I can't afford to spend 85 minutes strolling 3 ks.
TP (chin raised slightly, hand on heart): We did not stroll. We walked! And it was 83 minutes.
PB: I didn't realise you were so into it.
TP: I'm not.
PB: Then why are you so upset?
TP: Because I don't do getting broken up with very well.
PB: Which is why I was going to say-
TP: What? That we could "run" again when you've got over this Comrades thing? That you just need to run with other runners for a while? That you had a good time but you're not ready to become a one partner running companion kind of guy?
PB: Well, yes and no.
TP: Well, you need to decide pal. These boots were made for walking...
PB: So were your running shoes, apparently.
(Stumped. Uuugggghhh. And very wide smile of Particularly Beefy = direct flight to Melt-Your-Resolve-Weak-At-The-Kneesville.)
PB: I just thought, Pant, that we could do other stuff together.
PB: Like, how about dinner on Friday?
TP: I can like that.
PB: Good, so it's a date, then?
TP: Uh-huh. (He said date! He said date!)
PB: I'll pick you up at, say, seven.
TP: That'll do. Um. Just one more thing - what other other stuff?
PB: Don't make me blush.
And that, my friends, is why I kept my school uniform when I did the closet clean-up the other day. "Don't make me blush" sounds a bit like a challenge to me. One that I intend to win. In due course, of course.