I’m writing an article which necessitated contacting and interviewing someone named Adam. All I knew about him was that he was significant to the story and he sounded all kinds of attractive over the phone. (Yes, people can sound attractive on the phone. I watched a documentary about it last night.) I was calling him Adam Expert McInterview in my head.
My freshman year of college, I had this ridiculously huge, kind of stalk-y crush on a guy I’d see in the cafeteria every so often. I’d stare at him eating his food and talking to his friends and think things like, “Why can’t I eat food that well?” (I found a potato chip crumb in my bra right before I wrote this, by the way.) Besides the way he ate pizza, all I knew about the guy I was totally in love with was one thing: his name was Adam. I called him Adam Stalky McStalkerson. You can probably see where this is going. Sadly, I didn’t put it together until about 15 minutes before the interview when I became terribly, disgustingly sure that Adam Expert McInterview and Adam Stalky McStalkerson were the same person.
A smart person would have sat down and thought of some suave ways to handle the situation, or at least made sure their breath smelled OK or something. I am not a smart person. I ran out the door to the interview, realized I’d forgotten something, ran back in to grab my notebook, and then hopped down the stairs.
I bumped into my friend Sarah and her super nice boyfriend who had never met me before and said, “Hey! I’m going to interview the most handsome man on campus!!!!!!” There really were that many exclamation points.
Sarah congratulated me on being smart enough to put on pants, which is actually a pretty big deal for me, but that’s a story for another time, and her boyfriend nodded nicely and didn’t question my propensity for pantslessness. I skipped away to the building where the interview was supposed to take place and walked up to someone who was facing the other direction. I knew it was Adam Stalky McStalkerson because their hair was the same general shape. In my defense, my eyes were adjusting to the dim building light and the hair was very similar.
“Adam?” I said, in my sexiest voice. Then the person turned around and it was not Adam, but an old lady. That was a weird thing to extract myself from.
I excused myself awkwardly, went to sit on a bench, and began to freak out because even though I’d remembered my notebook, pen, and phone to record the conversation, I didn’t have any of my questions. I’d spent three whole minutes on coming up with those deep, significant questions, and I’d forgotten them. I started writing things like, “Who? What? When? Where? Why? Wherefore? Are you seeing anyone?” in my notebook.
I was scratching that last one out when someone with a handsome voice said, “Are you the person I’m looking for?”
Because I also watched a romantic comedy last night and somehow decided life should be like a Meg Ryan movie, I looked up and said, “Yes!” in a very breathy, very creepy way. Then I realized life is not a movie about Hugh Grant and I seriously needed to get my act together, so I stood up, shook his hand and said, “Are you Adam?” in a not sexy, scratchy way. (As if I needed confirmation that it was him. I only watched the guy eat for a year.)
Things were pretty much downhill from there. Because it was an interview and I recorded it, I happen to have a perfect transcript of exactly how downhill it went. The following is a series of things that I actually said during the worst interview of my sweet, short life. It’s physically difficult for me to hear it, partially because I can’t even describe his perfect, perfect voice to you, but mostly because the things I said are so ridiculous that I want to die a little.
1) “No, no. I love it when people stutter. People are all like, ‘uh-budee, uh-budee, uh-budee, that’s all folks”, and I’m like, ‘Yeah, stutter more!’ That’s how sexy I think stuttering is.”
2) “You look like Robert Downey, Jr. But not old. Like way less old. Like twenty…two-ish? Are you twenty-two-ish? Because you look so… tall. You’re like a tall… Robert Downey, Jr…. young person.”
“Ah-ah-ah-ah-ah. Law suits! Don’t be– oh. Oh, you weren’t joking. Oh, I’m sorry. Surely that won’t hold up in court. I can usually tell when people are joking. I must be sick today or something. My joke-ometer is off.” (Yes, that is something I actually said. “My joke-ometer is off”. That sounds like a game on The Price Is Right, not a thing that normal people have. On top of that, I laughed like the Sesame Street Count at the beginning. It was even kind of Transylvanian.)
4) “I had a good question… I swear I did. Question, question, question. OH! What is your last name?”
5) “You do have big fingers. But not in a fat way. It’s these phones. I hate them. I still haven’t figured out texting and I’ve had mine for months. It’s the worst. I just expect the phone to know what I’m saying now. And then when I type on the computer and it doesn’t fix my spelling, I get confused. Heh.” (I don’t know what I was doing here. It’s a 30 second-long tangent I got really into while he was trying to text someone to get information. I can’t text and talk at the same time, so I don’t know why I thought he could. I also don’t know why I thought I needed to tell him I can’t text. What kind of person under the age of 60/not plagued by arthritis can’t text? Why did I bring up poor spelling? True story: I’m a spelling bee champ. If I have one thing going for me, it’s that I can spell. Why would I give that up? At this point, I could clearly see on his face that he thought I was ridiculous, long-winded, and bad at spelling.)
6) “The kind of people that like to be creepy? I don’t think that’s the kind of clientele you want to bring in. Creepy people! Ah-ha-ha-ha!” (Then this weird whistling noise happens on the recording. I later discovered my nose was making that noise.)
7) I just counted how many times I giggled during this interview because the Sesame Street thing is going to my head. Nineteen. Nineteen inane giggles, ah-ah-ah!
8) “Alright. I think I have enough to give you an article… so that should be in the paper.” (It was an obvious comment, but at this point I had run out of questions and I just wanted to look at him, so I was filibustering the interview.)
9) “Oh no, those fliers aren’t mine. What do they say? ‘Dead Sexy’? Nope. No, they are definitely and clearly not mine, but could you repeat that closer to my phone? I just want to make sure the microphone is working…”
10) At this point, I walked away. As soon as the door clicks shut behind me in the recording, you can clearly hear me whisper, “Ohmigod. So handsome.”
I am never going to see him again.