The Taste of Love in a Time of Cyber Romance
We met on OK Cupid. I was in Mexico, he in Missouri, 1600 miles away. What we feasted on in those first stages when nine hours was too short a conversation was words. Thanks to Skype, these words could be either written or spoken and could be accompanied by sight of each other. The rigors of wearing makeup 24 hours a day were nothing compared to the agony of not talking for from 4 to 9 hours a day. He later admitted he couldn’t tell the difference between me in makeup and me without, but I had to admit this made little difference, for it is a peculiarity of Skype that the other person can’t see you unless you are seeing yourself, and to see myself in the pure unadulterated natural cramped my style. How could I be a vixen when I didn’t look like one? He granted the point. Why shouldn’t he, if he couldn’t tell the difference, anyway?
This point taken care of, we passed on to the next stage of computer dating: our first dinner date. He watched on his desktop computer as I prepared a salad. This was a long and lengthy process followed as closely as was possible using the camera from my laptop. He had not yet purchased a laptop, so when he repaired to the kitchen to prepare his meal, I heard sound effects but little else. When he returned to his desk in the living room, he laid his meal in front of his computer. I had yet to see it as I, in turn, placed my salad in front of me and proceeded to take my first bite, watching closely my technique according to my Skype image. I chewed politely and then smiled, revealing the lack of lettuce shards on my front teeth. I looked up. He was watching me as lovingly as usual. Now, it was his turn.
“What are you eating?” I asked. “Ham,” he said. This said, he lifted a huge hunk of ham on his fork, taking a dainty bite and chewing happily.
“What else?” I asked.
“Just ham,” he answered. And so he demolished the entire pound of thick ham steak, now and then washing it down with a healthy swig of rum and coke.
Rum and coke. It had been one of our bonding experiences to find that the drink of choice of each was not only Rum and Coke, but Bacardi Rum with Caffeine-Free Diet Coke. How could this not be a romance made in heaven?
But as for our culinary compatibility? From 1,600 miles away it seemed to be less of a problem than it was three months later, when we first made physical contact.
Well, there was a resolution. He started munching on carrots. We both found a like mania for potato chips, but true romance bloomed when I found the full bar of Hershey’s Chocolate atop his refrigerator. Who says we need to concentrate on our differences? Hershey’s Chocolate? Yes. Our first true taste of love.