I do not like being late. I don’t like making people wait. Hell, I get mildly panicked when I am taking too long in line when ordering a latte. It’s rather illogical and insane, the lengths I go to to not trouble people. I’m trying to not be such a spazmatron but look, it’s a hard habit to break. I’ve known plenty of people who are predictably late. It’s like my on timeness was some magnetic pull towards the chronically late.
I had a best friend that was so notoriously tardy I would give her arrival times that were thirty minutes to an hour before the actual time I hoped she’d arrive. Because then she’d actually be on time.
I’ve met her polar opposite. And her name is Kaply.
Kaply is ALWAYS EARLY. Annoyingly early. We’ll agree on a time to meet up and she will invariably be there before I arrive. I’ll text her that I am on my way and she’ll text back, “Great! I’m at the table by the window.” Oh fuck you, Kaply.
I was totally going to be right on time but now I feel like I am late. I am not late but I FEEL late. I hate feeling late. So then I scramble to get there and on the way I have to talk myself down from an OCD People Pleasing Psychotic Break. By the time I show up, I’ve probably got it 85% under control. I won’t mention it. I’m easy. I’m breezy.
I’m not fooling anyone but myself. I’m probably the most transparent person you’ll ever meet.
So Friday night Kaply and I agreed to meet up 6:30pm. I had my plan all worked out. I would leave my house at 6:00pm, allowing plenty of time to snag a table and get comfortable before she arrived.
I show up around 6:15pm, get a table, order a beer and text the Fella to gloat that I had FINALLY beaten her. Time ticked on. I ate some chips. I drank some beer. It was a couple minutes after 6:30 when I texted her. “I beat you!” I typed, hitting send with a boastful smile on my face. A second later I hear a voice to my right, “No you didn’t.”
Well fuck me.
She had been there before me, seated at a different table. We were at the same restaurant for 20 minutes without knowing it.
She moves her stuff over to my table and I let her have it. I swore at her and maybe referred to her as a bitch. But I started it all off with, “I love you but” which should let me off the hook a little bit. Good thing Kaply is the type of friend I can go off on and still have her want to sit through dinner with me. These are the kinds of friends we all need. Friends who push our buttons but still love us when we go all neurotic crazy on them. Friends who make us laugh at what a nutjob we can be.