How to catch a squirrel
Short Story by: Morris Castle
HOW TO CATCH A SQUIRREL
By Morris Castle
You don’t use meat as a bait to catch a squirrel… right?
That was my first thought when I decided to get the right woman to be my life companion.
Well, with that in mind, let me tell you some background about my life… I am an average guy with an average life. Not too handsome to be vain, not too ugly to be rejected at first sight. I’ve had a few relationships before, some of them just for fun, some of them with plans to reach the next step of the relationship ladder. But I’m still single and the ladder still unclimbed to the top, so I made up my mind… next relationship must be the one…
Let me get this straight before I proceed to the “how to” part… I enjoyed every relationship, as fun or as serious as they were. And as a personal recommendation, I suggest not to judge your current couple based on what a previous one did or didn’t do, that will make things flow the way they should be.
I am a normal guy with normal needs and normal aspirations; I see an attractive woman and I can’t help to imagine her as a viable prospect… BUT… long lasting relationships can’t be based just on the physical appearance, so… I approach to the prospect, run a discreet personality test and if she is a kind person, then I give myself the chance of that prospect to become a couple or a friend.
On the other hand, as a normal guy, relationships have started as friendships too, in the workplace, in a bus stop… when you less expect them and from whom you less expect. They can last one day, one year or one lifetime. The point is… relationships can be looked for or can be spontaneous but, I think… why can’t they be something in between? That’s how we get to the “how to” part of the story.
The common expression is: “There are plenty of fish in the sea” but… you don’t get to choose which one bites, do you? Hunting foxes…? Dogs had that covered… So… what about a squirrel? An easier target I might think… You know there are a few on your neighborhood and you can spot them once or twice in a day, and… if someone will have your nuts anyway… a squirrel will appreciate them the best (wink).
That brings me to my original question…
- You don’t use meat as a bait to catch a squirrel… right?
I mean… that cliché of entering a bar and look for good looking girls hoping you will find the love of your life, is the equivalent of throwing a hook into the sea and hope to get a white whale while drinking a beer, isn’t it?
Well, if you want to catch a squirrel, I mean… if you want a certain type of woman, you should set things up according to your expectations. In my case… this was the bait for my setup:
- A blanket laid on the beach; a basket with grapes, berries, bread and cheese; a bucket with ice and a bottle of wine chilling inside, a Dickens book and a scrabble board.
There was this girl… Cindy… I saw her every day walking with her dog… a cute 5’6” girl with an intellectual look… The only reason I knew her name was Cindy is because she dropped her work badge once while walking and I picked up for her, she gave me a warm smile, thanked me and continue walking… We began to nod or wave every time we saw each other since that brief meeting. I wasn’t particularly interested on her, so I kept my life going until I took the decision that inspired all this.
OK, I had a decision, a “squirrel”, a bait, and I was going to let the spontaneity did its part. I didn’t know a thing other than her name, but… she always walked alone (the dog doesn’t count) she looked about my age (don’t ask) and her smile… her warm smile… made it worth to give her a shot.
So… here we go… at 4:30 p.m. I set up my stage facing the ocean, 15 minutes later, everything on place, all systems running, ready for a “casual” meeting… she walked by that spot every day around 5:00 p.m. so… opportunity… check!... bait… check!... me trying (I said trying) to look cool… check!... Have you ever tried to look cool while expecting someone to notice you? Pathetic? Romantic? I would say… Difficult!
Anyway… the clock was ticking, my heart was pounding… the wind started to blow a little… and there she was… 100 yards away… looking great, her dog on her left side… left??? It always walked on her right!!! I set all up trying to be on her left side while passing by! To made her walk inches away from me and notice me! Shoot! 50 yards… the reason… a book on her right hand… what was I saying about spontaneity? Right! Let’s give it a shot! That was my cue! 20 yards… let’s see what is she reading… 10 yards… a hardback… good start… 5 yards… “A tale of…” NO FREAKING WAY! That’s an opportunity on a silver tray!!! 3, 2, 1… Showtime!
- Me: “Hi” (loud enough to be heard, since the dog was between us)
- She: “Hello” (smiles, but took her off guard)
- Me: “What are you reading?” (slipping a hand to grab my book)
- She: “uhm… A tale of two cities… why?” (the dog pulling forward)
- Me: “Dickens? Oh! Look what I have here… Great expectations! (be cool, be cool)
- She: “uhm, OK” (hesitation)
- Me: “I’m sorry, we were not properly introduced… my name is Morris, and you are… (like I didn’t know hehehe)
- She: “Cindy, nice to properly meet you Morris” (smile)
- Me: “So… Dickens’ fan?” (almost there… be cool)
- She: “Yeah, you?” (dog sniffing around)
- Me: “Believe it or not… my first try… a friend recommended it… light reading… so far, so good” (time to make my move…) “Hey, tell me… are you busy? I’d love to have someone to share this wine and have a good conversation”
- She: “Actually… I’m not, but… aren’t you expecting someone? I see a scrabble board there… that’s something you don’t play alone…” (busted!)
- Me: “Well, hahaha, funny story… silly me… I got addicted to scrabble a couple of months ago and I carry it around all the time, I use it now to avoid the wind will lift my blanket, see? Four corners, four items… the basket, the wine, the board and myself…” (how about that?)
- She: “I see… well… if you don’t mind the dog… just one glass”
- Me: “Not at all! Please, have a seat. What’s her name?” (petting the dog)
- She: “It’s Holly, my loyal friend and guardian… one command and she would bite your head off” (chuckles)
- Me: “I would say ‘lick my head off’ could be a more accurate term hahahaha” (dog licking my face)
- She: “Oops! Hahahaha, so… Morris… a penny for your thoughts… about Great expectations”
- Me: “I’m loving it so far, I can’t wait to read Pip’s next move! Well… actually… I could wait… if you agree… or should I say ‘dare’… hehehe… to play scrabble with me”
- She: “Let me think… the WORDS I’m looking for… Game ON! Does that mean something to you? hahahaha” (wink)
- Me: “Me and my big mouth… I have the feeling this is not the first time you played it… right?”
- She: “I could be bluffing, you know?”
- Me: “There is one way to find out… let me open this bottle, I hope you like Spanish wines”
- She: “Si señor!”
- Both: (Laughing)
We had the fruit first and the cheese and bread later, the wine bottle lasted one hour, the same amount of time it took her to defeat me in a tight game while having a delightful conversation about books and places.
Everything felt just right, so… time for the next stage… the next move…
- Me: “It’s getting cold… here… let me put this blanket on your lap” (I placed myself behind her and laid a blanket on her lap, disguising a soft hug… she didn’t mind) “Oh, look! The sun is setting now”
I kept my hands on her shoulders, she stared at the sunset and let a sigh escape… then I placed my head next to hers and gave her a soft kiss on her right cheek… she stood up, grabbed her cheek and blushed –so tender- Then I stood up too, grabbed the blanket again, put it on her back, this time facing her, the sun half way down yet…
Her cheeks turned tomato red, I put both of my hands on both of her cheeks –so warm- and approached my face to get 2 inches from hers… the sun almost gone… she approached one inch… then my lips went the remaining one, her arms closed on my back and then we kissed… softly, tenderly while the sunlight disappeared. Holly gave us her blessing with her excited tail and her kind look.
We stared at each other for a little while… Do you people know the lyrics of “Something stupid” performed by Frank Sinatra or Robbie Williams? Let me write a fragment of it:
“And afterwards we drop into a quiet little place and have a drink or two
And then I go and spoil it all by saying something stupid like ‘I love you’"
Well, too soon to say “I love you” just yet, right? Don’t panic people… I didn’t… then again, I said something stupid because I couldn’t think straight…
- Me: “So… when do I get a rematch?” (D’oh!)
- She: “Uh?”
- Me: “I mean… you just beat me at scrabble, you just can’t beat me and leave me… can you?” (Puppy face, save me from my stupidity!)
- She: “Hahahahahahaha, well… I don’t see the point of that…” (excruciating pause) “you will lose again anyway…” (laughing)
- Me: “How can you tell I didn’t let you win?”
- She: “Did you?” (Intrigued)
- Me: “There is one way for you to find out…” (confident look)
- She: “Say… same hour tomorrow? Here?”
- Me: “It’s a date” (wink)
- She: “We’ll see about that” (wink)
She kissed me goodbye, Holly did her own licking my face again, and they both started walking their way home…
That, ladies and gentlemen, was how to catch a squirrel…
Now, keep it… that’s a different, waaay longer story…
You might ask me or yourselves… Why a squirrel and not a chipmunk? Well, it’s actually very simple: Squirrels have better looking tails (wink)
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