I don’t mean the altar kind of “stood up” o.
Those who go that far are the meanest of the lot.
I am talking about the I-have-taken-a- bath-powdered- my- face- donned- on- my- best- dress- and waiting- for- you- at- a- public- place- and- you- don’t- show- up kinda stood up.
If you have been there, you must remember how painful it was and how difficult it was for you to forgive the person that stood you up.
If you haven’t, it’s not a nice experience.
Over the weekend, I met with my partner for a bite at KFC before we went to watch a play at Muson Centre. While we waited for our food to come, I noticed a young man, who had reserved two cosy seats at the corner of the restaurant, (that’s how you know people who want to meet in secret).
Anyway, this guy also had a vantage view of the entrance; (if you’ve been to KFC at City Mall, you’ll understand.) His eyes kept darting between the swinging doors and his android phone. And none of the new comers for more than 30 to 45 minutes, was the expected person.
Now, did I mention he had just finished a meal when we got there and that his tray had been promptly cleared away; but he didn’t leave. After about 20 minutes, he ordered another tray of snacks but didn’t touch them as he worked the phone with one eye on the doors.
I was certain he wasn’t waiting for his male friend, mba!
It had to be a babe!
Years back, I had the unfortunate experience of being stood up. It was my first year at the university and I had met someone I thought I could take home to mama. So, during the holidays, we had agreed to meet at the then newly launched Mr. Biggs restaurant, not too far from my house.
Back then, going to Mr Biggs was a big deal, same with Cousin T at Surulere; those were places many young people converged.
Anyway, I got there a few minutes before the agreed time and bought me a doughnut and coke. Of course, you also know you can’t go to such places without buying anything, otherwise some snooty-faced, overzealous security guard will boot you off; you are after all occupying space for paying customers.
So, there I was, with my coke and doughnut, nibbling at it so as not to finish too quickly. A few seats from me, was this very lovely girl, fair in complexion, with a tray of snacks for two; it was a mini feast. She also appeared to be waiting for someone and was idly nibbling, checking her wrist watch and watching the door. We’d both chosen seats at the corner; hidden but not so we couldn’t see who came in.
Did I mention those were the days when GSM hadn’t graced us with its distractions?
But how long can you truly nibble at a Biggs doughnut? How long can you nurse a bottle of coke and still be straining your neck every time the door swings open? Not for too long and especially when the security guard kept signalling at you to hurry as more people flooded in.
I had to drag my bony behind off the seat after about an hour of taking one sip per minute on my coke and one nibble every five minutes on my doughnut aside from that, shame would not let me stay with customers hovering over my empty tray willing me to get up and go so they could have my seat.
My fellow waiting-for-boo partner didn’t budge, she had two trays, remember.
Bobo no show.
Did he forget?
Did he change his mind?
Where’s the fool?
Where’s the nincompoop?
I swung from shame to anger. I went outside to secure a spot where I could still see the entrance in the hope that, perhaps, bobo would show.
I couldn’t believe I had been stood up, o.
Henh, me, ke?
At that time, I hadn’t learnt to make fun of myself, so the more I contemplated my situation, the more tears welled up in my eyes. Then I began to self-loath…
Maybe he isn’t interested in you anymore.
Arfgh! Ugly pepper like you…
Bhet…weiraminit! From the corner of my eye, I saw the fine girl seated not too far from me, the one with the two trays laden with a mini feast. Yes, the one, waiting for her beau, she’d eaten everything on hers and a few from the other tray. She’s been stood up, too.
Bobo no show.
She became a kindred spirit. We both acknowledged our losses as she walked, slowly, past me.
Me? I still waited. After three hours, yes, three solid hours, I went home.
You should see me walking very stiffly like a wooden doll…chai!
Bobo nko? What happened to him?
Let’s just say we didn’t stay friends, his excuse, when I eventually saw with him, was not good enough.
And oh, by the way, the guy at KFC, I was right; it was a babe. A big bottomed babe for that matter, was worth the wait. You should see the way bobo sprang up from the seat, then guided her away from my amebo eyes to some inner seating area.
I was very happy for him!