You knew you were hot. I knew you knew you were hot, and it was pretty clear that you knew I knew you were hot, and that’s why we were together.
Now, all this time later, I think you picked me because you knew I’d know you knew you were hot, unlike some of the other boys who just knew you were hot and that was enough for them. Those boys had too much confidence for you. I, on the other hand, was just insecure enough to fall into your trap.
I remember the time we were walking together along the two-lane road to that cave, and you were wearing a thin white halter top and no bra, and every carful of dudes that passed us honked at you and shouted lewd comments about your hotness, and I yelled back at them “Fuck you!” but you were actually loving it, I could tell, and I got all bent out of shape. You were hot. You knew you were hot. I knew you knew you were hot, and it was pretty clear that you knew I knew you were hot.
And then there was the time we went to the midnight showing of — I can’t even remember now, some movie — on New Year’s Eve and you were wearing this long cream-colored gown with a lacy shawl around your bare shoulders, and you were hot. But you had no coat even though it was fucking freezing as we waited in the ticket line, so you were cold, and that made your nipples hard (no bra again) so, naturally, you were hot.
You knew you were hot. I knew you knew you were hot, and it was pretty clear that you knew I knew you were hot.
I was dressed in a pair of goddamn khakis or something and a button-down shirt, but I had a coat because I wasn’t stupid (even if I was insecure), and I saw all the dudes in that line staring at you and leering and shaking their heads at your hotness. I saw all that. And I believe I put my arm around your waist to declare to all of them that you were mine and I was the one who got all the proceeds of your hotness. Me. Mine. You were my hot girl.
And one other incident comes to mind, when we were sort of in the middle of breaking up shortly after we headed off to college together, and you came to my room with a sympathy invite to take you to 2001: A Space Odyssey, showing in the little campus movie theater in about ten minutes. I knew it was just because you had no one else to go with. I could tell you knew I knew.
And by the way, you were hot. You were wearing a pair of white short-shorts and a clingy sleeveless top with no bra, as per usual, and you knew I couldn’t say no to your sympathy invite because of how hot you were. Maybe you’d come back to my room after the movie, is what I thought.
But as we waited to buy our tickets outside the campus movie theater, some dude from one of your classes I wasn’t in sidled on up and started flirting with you — big time. Even though I was standing right there and he probably knew we at least had been together. He glanced at me once and must have said to himself, Fuck this loser. And you were clearly into him.
He knew you were hot. That was it.
We went inside. I was angry. You kept looking over your shoulder toward where the dude was sitting, behind us and to the right. I noticed all of this.
Then, not even at the halfway point in that very long movie, you leaned into me and said you couldn’t do this, it was too weird, and you got up and left. I don’t even think they were on their way to Jupiter yet.
But I didn’t have to turn around to know that the dude got up a few seconds later and followed you out of the little campus theater. I knew he knew he had a shot at a hot girl and he wasn’t going to let it pass him by.
I always wished I had that kind of confidence. Instead, I’d always go back to my room and write about how I’d had a shot at a hot girl, but it might have just passed me by.
I’m telling you all this because you knew you were hot. I knew you knew you were hot, and it was pretty clear that you knew I knew you were hot. But I also know, all this time later, what became of you.
And I hate to have to tell you — but I won.
Brooks Mormino is happily married in Ashland, Ohio.