In middle school, I was a flat-out dork session.
Don’t get me wrong, I dressed pretty decently. I had plenty of friends. However, I couldn’t talk to a girl to save my life. Those women that remember me in middle school can surely attest. I would pull scrunchies out of hair, mess hair up, and run off laughing so loudly it echoed through several hallways. I had a new crush every week (almost literally). I would call certain girls after school thinking I was being friendly not realizing I was the definition of annoying. I would randomly ask girls out even though we hadn’t talked all summer long. No wonder why girls weren’t flocking to me like, “Yes, Jarrod! You’re so fine!” I had no game what-so-ever! Some of those same women are probably reading this right now. If you are, I’m sorry for my middle school idiocy.
Ahhh, trials of middle school!!
My homeboy “dated” (C’mon guys. This is middle school. Dates consisted of talking on the phone and going to the school dance.) pretty much every cute girl in the school. At least it felt like that. Here I was destined to be a sidekick. Until one fateful conversation changed my life.
My mom, cousin, and I were driving home from church one Sunday night. I was talking about my plight of non-reciprocated feelings. My mom said, “Just be their friend, Jarrod. Talk to them.” My cousin chimed in, “Yeah. Conversation rules the nation.”
Side Note: My poor mom. I love her more than words can express, but MAN did she set me up for the friend zone so HARD!! More to come on that later.
I laughed at what my cousin said because it rhymed, and he was in 11th grade at the time. So, of course he knows what he’s talking about. Needless to say, I didn’t heed the advice and continued on my lonely, dateless path. I had no shame in asking a girl to be my girlfriend, but there was no substance. Nothing to base the relationship on. They didn’t really know me, and I didn’t really know them. That’s because there was no meaningful conversation.
Let’s be honest. Is there really good conversation in middle school? Probably not. Not at the level of what we expect as adults. However, the concept is to get to know someone. I take the advice given to me at that age, and apply it to everyone. Get to know people. Know their likes and dislikes. It helps you in being able to communicate with them.
Meaningful conversation goes a long way.