Out of My League

(A Valentine's Dilemma)

A ring of the bell over the door signaled the entrance of a new customer. I glanced up to check and see if it was a regular.

It was.

His name was Terrance, he came in daily. Or at least from what I could tell, he always seemed to come in while I was working. But it's not like I made a mental note of it every time. Why would I care? He was just another customer.

He strolled up to the counter, with his slow deliberate gait. As if he had all the time in the world. For all I know, he did.

He was tall, but not excessively so. He had short dark brown hair, so dark it was almost black in color. Greatly contrasting to his hair color was his skin tone, it was like smooth ivory. But that was not what was so memorable about him. Nor was it his confident stature, because that was obviously intriguing also. What was so striking, so incredibly memorable were his eyes. They were a bright, oceanic blue that always seemed to gleam with a humor in them that was unmistakable. Of course, he was just another regular.

He smiled widely as he approached the counter where I was standing waiting to take his coffee order. I faltered for just a moment, forgetting what exactly I was doing. I glanced down at my hands in a hopeful manner. I was hoping that they would give me a hint as to what in the world I was supposed to be doing. They didn't.

When I looked up into those baby blues, I blushed. Consequently I blushed harder when I realized I was blushing. I'm pitiful, he's just another customer. He's way too far out of my league.

"Hello, Terrance, what brings you to our Bean There establishment today?" I smiled widely, a mandatory requirement of all employees, but not necessarily hard to accomplish given the present company.

"Oh, you know, looking for my afternoon jolt of caffeine and maybe one of those lovely world famous cookies," He winked. Oh goodness, the boy really, truly winked. This was just too much.

"Heh, well will you be having your usual? The cookies of the day are the good ol' fashioned snicker doodles." Of course they were the snicker doodles, it was the only cookie I could make properly and unfortunately it was my day to bake. Pitiful, I know.

"Perfect. Those are my favorite cookies." His smile widened, if that was even possible. Apparently it was...

"Alright, that will be three dollars even. Here are your cookies and your drink will be ready soon." I smiled, collected his money, gave him his receipt and proceeded to make his drink. At least this was a task I know how to do. Making small talk with ol' blue eyes was just asking for too much on my salary.

He stood in his corner and watched me make his drink. He always did this. It always made me wonder what was so fascinating about watching someone make a drink. Maybe since I do it so much the magic has been lost or something? That must be it.

"So what are your plans for this weekend?"

The question startled me to be honest. Usually he just watched me make the drinks. Never once in the months he's been coming here has he made small talk past the register. I stopped what I was doing in shock, my mouth was open, and I was staring at him. I must have looked like a loon, like some gaping fish or something else absurd like that.

Yet he just smiled patiently waiting for my response. It felt like forever until I got my wits back but of course it must have been no more than thirty seconds. I swallowed and replied, "Oh nothing really. Work, maybe rent a movie. Super exciting stuff..."

I wasn't sure but for a second a confused look seemed to have crossed his eyes and face, but as quickly as it appeared it was gone, yet again replaced by his smooth, easy smile. "But of course you must have a sweetheart."

Now I was most definitely confused. Sweetheart? What in the world was he talking about?

I must have looked as confused as I really was because he continued, "Well, because of Valentine's Day this weekend. You must have a sweetheart to give you roses and chocolate and go on a romantic night on the town."

Oh. So that's what he meant. How could I forget Valentines Day? Also known by my sister and I by the name of S. A. D. translated into Singles Awareness Day. How in the world did I forget about it? I really need to listen to the radio more, or buy a calendar or something...

I laughed. I couldn't help it. The idea of me having a sweetheart was just a ridiculous notion. "No, no," I said chuckling. "I do not have a sweetheart."

Now he definitely looked confused. He looked like he was thinking really hard. He almost seemed to be internally fighting with himself. But of course I must be crazy for thinking this.

I continued preparing his drink, and he continued his brooding in his corner. He was being so odd today...

I finished his drink, smiled, and said, "Here's your drink. What're your plans for the weekend?" Might as well make small talk back.

Now he looked startled. But of course he gained his composure a lot quicker than I did. "Oh I don't know. I might play soccer with some buddies."

What? He didn't have a girl? Was he gay? No, he didn't seem gay. Well, whatever. "Oh. Cool. Well Happy Valentine's Day. Thanks for reminding me." I smiled genuinely.

He smiled back and replied, "Happy Valentine's to you too. Maybe you'll find a sweetheart. You never know, maybe there's a boy in love with you right now that cannot get up the courage to ask to be your valentine."

Goodness I think I might swoon. If only he wasn't talking metaphorically, if only he was talking about himself that would definitely not make it be another SAD Valentine's day.

But of course, he would only fall in love with me in my dreams. He's too far out of my league. He's the gorgeous soccer player and I'm the girl who gets him his coffee. Unless I somehow turn into a supermodel in the next minute then he will forevermore remain my dream. Because never in a billion years would I have the courage and confidence to tell him that he is nice and gorgeous and I would love to get to know him better right after kissing him passionately against the counter.

Instead, I smiled weakly and produced two words, "If only."

He smiled back, turned away and headed to the exit.

I looked down at my limp hands, again in the hope that they would give me some form of a clue as to what I should be doing. I felt like a wimp. Why didn't I just tell him? What would I have to lose other than my dignity, my pride? But those could be regained, right? But in all honesty I was losing my dignity by doing nothing. I knew I had more to lose by doing nothing than by doing something. And yet I still did nothing every day. I hand him his coffee and cookies with a customary smile and call it a day. There's nothing wrong with a little bit of routine right?

I heard the bell above the door signaling that he left. Yes, just another regular.

There's always tomorrow.


I looked up at the next customer, "Hello. Welcome to Bean There, what can I get for you?" And went on with my day.