The classic teen movie moment is that of a guy and a girl making out, clothing begins to come off and then suddenly the intimate mood is killed as the guy begins battling the bra clasp (index between skin and fabric
fabric, thumb against eye of clasp, then brace and push, no, no brace, brace and push, brace… forget it). This common theme in movies and TV shows tells us one thing: clearly Hollywood writers have trouble maneuvering their way around a bra. It’s an awkward moment played up for laughs, and it nearly always kills the mood.
Myself, well I managed to pull all this off before underwear even made an appearance.
Flashback several years ago to a wide-eyed college freshman version of myself wining and dining a girl I had met on campus. Though there was no wine, or dining really, as a college student it was more ‘sit in a dorm room and try to avoid spending any money’ but that’s not as commonly used a phrase as wine and dine.
My suave (for a wide-eyed college freshman) plan was to have the girl over to watch a horror movie, one that would help bring us closer together. Now I suppose for the sake of full disclosure I’m forced to admit I don’t like horror movies, I mean I wouldn’t go so far as to say I’m a wimp but let’s just say E.T. scared me as a kid and it’s been downhill since then.
To correct the fact that none of my light-hearted comedy collection would cause a girl to cling to me out of fear, though to be fair the collective works of Tim Allen do have some frightful stabs at humour, I went over to a friend’s place, an avid horror fan that could steer me in the right direction.
I was promptly handed a copy of the film Se7en which he had just bought, so new it hadn’t even been removed from its packaging.
The original plan was to pre-screen the film by myself, in broad daylight, preferably with heavy use of the fast forward button… Alright, fine! Maybe a little bit of a wimp. Happy?
This plan was ruined by that crazy ‘going to classes’ notion they try to force on you while attending higher education, and so that evening she arrived before I even had time to crack the shrink wrap.
The evening began perfectly, the romantic chemistry bubbling in every word, every action. The room had that perfect mood lighting and it was quickly becoming clear it would be a night to remember.
“Why don’t we watch this now?” she asked as she picked up Se7en, a coy smile accenting the question.
Over eager I practically tore it from her hands without a word. Fumbling I took a few passes before I caught the corner of the shrink wrap.
“Ah, there we go,” I said beaming confidently as I unwrapped the movie that would have her cowering into me within minutes.
“You know I’ve always wanted to see this, I hear it’s really scary.” Her words, causing that confident beam to only brighten.
I tried opening the case, it wouldn’t budge. Examining it I realized I forgot the security sticker across the top.
“Security sticker,” I explained, trying to pull off the cheesy fake laugh to cover one’s mistake. She laughed back, humouring me.
I tried sliding my nail under the sticker but the industrial grade glue would have none of that. I stood there in front of this girl, watching me work away at the sticker with the vigor of an old woman after investing her pension in scratch-off tickets.
“Need… help?” she asked after several minutes of awkward silence.
“No, no I think I am getting it.”
“There’s usually like a little thing on it that says ‘pull’” she said in what I imagine was meant to be helpful, but by the time the sound reached my ear I was convinced she was mocking my ability to remove a simple sticker.
She was right though, there was a pull tab. And so, as instructed, I pulled.
And it was working!
The sticker began to stubbornly peel away from the case and as I prepared to look skyward and thank God I suddenly noticed I was pulling an increasingly smaller strip of sticker, till suddenly the sliver of security device had separated itself from the rest of the sticker.
“You’ve got to be kidding me!” I exclaimed, causing her to raise her head from the magazine she had found on my bedside table.
“Huh?” she asked, or something like it. I was to distracted by the fact she was flipping through my copy of that months Canadian Geographic… I could’ve sworn I had hid those.
“Did you look for that pull tab?” she asked.
“Yes!” I practically screamed, catching myself I took a breath.
“I tried the pull tab, the tab didn’t work. I pulled it. The sticker is still here.”
She went back to examining the evidence of how big a geek she had agreed to go on a date with.
I needed to open this and open it fast. I needed something to quickly slice the thing open. I bolted to the kitchen to find a knife.
They were all encrusted with left over food and mold.
I took a moment to stand there and look at the sink while cursing my roommates.
I ran back into the room and began searching for my scissors, no luck. I grabbed a pen and began sliding it across the groove of the case, it did nothing, but I now had a nice tracing of the case hidden by sticker.
I looked for anything that might work… anything. But for some reason my room seemed to have been sanitized for someone on suicide watch. Desperate I grabbed a penny; I don’t think I need to tell you how successful this was.
Every perfectly planned moment of the night was quickly crumbling around me. I began frantically scratching on the worlds stickiest of stickers. Frustration rising.
She crossed over to me.
“Let me try,” my pride said to refuse. My desperation said let her. Desperation won.
She slid her finger under the sticker, no success. She tried again, and again. Finally it began to peel; she was doing it, but then.
“Wait! No, no stop!” I shouted.
“What?!” she stopped dead in her tracts.
“You are ripping the DVD sleeve!”
“No I’m not Derek, it’s just the sticker.”
“No, you’re ripping the case. You’re wrecking the case!”
“You know what, forget it!” she said, tossing the DVD onto my bed. “Maybe I should just go.”
“Hey, look, no…” I began, trying to figure out what way to peddle. “I appreciate what you were doing, but you were clearly ripping the actual case. That sort of just, you know, well you were wrecking the DVD.”
It would be weeks before I ended up seeing Se7en, for the time being I popped Zoolander into the DVD player and curled up in bed alone.