The lunch date that wasn't!!!
During my first job, while I was roaming around with a friend in the office campus when I saw my friend’s eyes almost popping out. His heartbeats sounded so loud that I thought someone was hammering the building. And he looked completely frozen.
“What happened? Did you respond to nature in your pants or what?” I wondered.
“Dude, do you see that girl?”
“Oh her? Yeah she is hot” and I saw a hot chic just passing us.
“Dude, she is X. She was my junior at school and I fancied her. Look at her skin dude. I am sure if you touch her, you will feel as if you have touched satin”
“Yeah like if I touch your skin, I will surely feel as if I have touched sand paper” I laughed.
But he didn’t. In fact he wasn’t even listening to me. He looked like being lost in X. Completely.
I am not sure if it still works but in those days, one could send messages to other systems in the network using “net send” if operating system was Windows-98. All one needed was IP address or network name of the target machine and he could chat with others.
“Do you know? She remembers me.” my friend told me during the lunch on next day.
“Who, your boss?” I said with a chuckle. His boss was a 5’10” tall, 100+kg and 000 on RGB scale.
“Nope dude. Don’t fall off your chair. I am talking about X”
“Oh damn. How do you know?”
“She sent me a message yesterday using net send. We have been chatting since morning. And yeah, we chatted for 3 hours yesterday too”
“Great. No doubt you look like feeling great”
“Yes no doubt. After all how many people are lucky to get a second chance to win their first love” he was beaming with confidence.
What my poor friend didn’t know that it wasn’t X who was sending him messages using net send. It was yours truly. My machine’s network name was ABCD1234. And there wasn’t a way to check out who did it belong to. At least my friend didn’t know or didn’t try to find out.Chat between my friend and X, which was me, went on for next couple of days.
There were several requests from him to meet over a cup of coffee, have lunch together or catch up in the evening. But I declined them all.But with each passing chat sessions, I could see his false hopes building taller every minute. I could see it in our chat sessions when I was behind the mask of X. I could see it in his talks whenever I met him as myself.
I had to end it.
But I didn’t want to simply tell it to him. I wanted to end it by having some fun.
So instead of him asking X out on 4th day of their chat, I made X ask him out. He looked thrilled in his chat messages. The time was fixed at 1:00 PM. Venue was fixed as the main canteen.
I went to my friend and asked “Lunch?”
“Not today. I am not feeling well” he replied while holding his stomach.
“All well?” I asked knowing the exact reason why he wasn’t feeling well.
“Yeah, just that I don’t feel like eating. You go ahead” he responded.
He very well knew that I never took my lunch in the main canteen. I always went out of the campus. So there was no way I could become a kabab mein haddi in his date. But this was totally unexpected. I didn’t think he would refuse going out with me for lunch. All I thought was that he would surely look uncomfortable while coming with me; I would let him know the truth and have a grand laugh at his face. But he forced me to change my plans.
Change I did.
I came down to main canteen and took my position hidden behind a pillar to see the drama unfold.
My friend came down. He was looking edgy. He was looking nervous. He was looking for someone.
Soon X came down. My friend started looking at X with an ear-to-ear smile on his face. He couldn’t take his eyes of her.
If someone keeps looking at you, you look back at him. So did X. But her looks said - Who the hell is he? And why the hell is he smiling at me? Buzz off you bugger. X kept walking and walked past my friend. My friend followed her.
Since I was also satiating the hunger of my stomach, I had to give up on food for my mischievous mind. Hunger comes first. Anything comes later.
Within few minutes; he came fuming to the canteen. I waived at him.
“How the hell you are here. You go out every day, don’t you?” he looked worried thinking that I might have seen his acts.
“Well I had to go out alone. So I thought of coming here” I smiled “But what happened to you. Your seem to have turned completely red”
“Nothing” he didn’t see me eye to eye.
After half an hour of poking, he opened his mouth.“These girls dude!!! God may have given a lot more than us, but he has surely not given them any brains” his anger was evident.
“I have already told you about my chat with X”
“Yes. What about it? Did she tell you that you are like her brother?”
“That would have been much more digestible. We have been chatting for so many days, almost 8 hours a day. So many times I asked her out. She refused. Today she asked me out”
“God. Damn. It. It had to happen on the day when you aren’t well and don’t feel like eating. Sheer bad luck.” I tried to bring as much drama as possible in my phonetics.
“Well actually no. I refused going out with you because I had a date with X.”
“So? What so? I was waiting for her here. When she came, I looked at her. She looked back as if I am alien. She didn’t recognize me at all.”
“Then? What Then? I went running after her and reminded about our date”
“Cool. One brave fellow you are. What did she say?” I somehow saved myself from falling while laughing.
“She didn’t recognize me at all. When I went to speak to her she told me that she wasn’t interested in credit cards or any kind of loans.”
“What the hell? Didn’t you tell her about your chat sessions?”
“I did. She almost shouted at me saying she doesn’t even have access to a PC, how could she have chatted with a complete stranger. She even threatened me of complaining to HR if I didn’t leave immediately” the fear of HR action was all over his face.
“Why did you take such a big risk dude? Like all these days about your chat sessions, why didn’t you tell me about it that you were going for lunch with her?”
“What would you have done?”
“I would have told you not to go”
“And why is that Mr. LoveGuru”
“Because all these days it wasn’t her was chatting with you. It was me” my confession earned me loads of abuses, few kicks and an obligation to pay his lunch bill for next one week.