This week's Modern Love, the column in the NYT's Sunday Style section, bucked a trend. It's supposed to be about modern love, duh, but it's usually about adopting babies and cancer. This week, it actually was about modern (text-messaging) luv, with an essay by a young woman about her awkward flirtation with a frustratingly immature but totally cute indie-rocker boy in Brooklyn. Title of essay: "Was I On a Date or Baby Sitting?" HEY OH! "I asked my musician friends what they knew about him. Joanna, a singer, summed him up: 'He's an indie rock dreamboat. His voice is transcendent and he writes lovely lyrics. He has a nice face, he has a kid and he tours a lot. He's a star in his world.'" Oh, perfect: the conveniently unavailable guy who "goes on tour" a lot. Of course, we'd all love to know who the dude is and what band he is in. Thanks to a tipster, now we know!
"The classy text messager in the column in Matthew Caws from Nada Surf and he's still with the girl he broke up with the first for." HEY OH! You'll remember Nada Surf for their 1996 joke hit about high school, "Popular." (The album totes didn't sell and Nada Surf was dropped from their label; they went indie and made more records. Amazingly, they're still a band.)
Excerpts of dating classiness from the man whose hit song included the lyrics, "Don't put off breaking up when you know you want to... prolonging the situation only makes it worse":
A CUTE guy from a rock band sent me an e-mail message out of the blue. We had a friend in common, and he saw me sing "Christmas Wrapping" by the Waitresses one night in Brooklyn, at karaoke.
He continued, in all lowercase, to introduce himself. I scrolled over his rambling exposition, waiting for the payoff. Was he going to ask me out? He didn't. "i'm at home absolutely spazzing out because we're leaving in a few days to make a record and i have to/really should finish a long list of songs. so, waving hello and/or re-hello! all the bestest."
My enthusiasm waned. A hot guy in an indie band waved me hello and/or re-hello mid-spazz-out?
Still, he was cute, so they went on a "date":
He took me for a walk around his neighborhood. I'm always suspicious when a guy takes his date on a walk, because it reeks of poverty and an inability to plan. It seemed as if he was taking me on a stroll of his estate, and from the way people on the street greeted him with questions about his tour and album, it was as if he was the king of his neighborhood.
Careless behavior followed and certain parties ended up getting hurt, per usual. The essay's author, Julie Klausner, concedes that, "I would soon learn a lesson men have known for years: that it's possible to be attracted to somebody you don't like."
Yes. Yes it is.
[Photo: Michael Schmelling for NY Mag]