I went on my first “date” in fourth grade, if you could call it that. Chris Morgan and I wore matching Memphis in May shirts that had the flag of the United Kingdom that read, “The British Are Coming.”. We wore matching blue jeans and white tennis shoes. We met Heather Sumrall and Carlie Long at the East End Skating rink so that Chris and I could show off our athletic prowess.

It was the biggest day of my life leading up to that point. We skated, we did the Limbo, we did reverse skate, and we did the go-cart races (where one of you squats down and the other one pushes.) It was HUGE!

Finally, the time had come. They dim the lights and the creepy, burn-out, dj came over the microphone and announced, “Couples Skate only….Couples Skate only-e-e-e-e.” It was Go-time. This was the moment you prepare for your whole life and Morgan and I did not put on matching shirts and spend three hours tight rolling our jeans for nothing. We took the girls on the skating rink and…

we did it!…

Right there in front of God and everybody, we did it!…

We held hands with girls! This was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and we embraced it. It was so intense that Eminem later wrote a song about it (and talked about his mom’s spaghetti.)

As we skated around in a circle, it was hard to believe that we were actually holding hands. And, I don’t mean in a brother-and-sister kind of way, or the way that you hold your grandma’s hand walking down steps. I mean, we had hands clasped and fingers intertwined. Basically, our hand-holding was equivalent to the way people kiss in France. We were holding hands…with tongue.

Holding hands was big business.

This was gonna last forever.

This was true love.

This was fate.

This was destiny.

This was going to be a romance novel.

This was over by Monday. We had both been dumped by lunchtime. I’m not sure exactly why we had been dropped but it probably had something to do with a bad haircut, wearing sweatpants every day, and being in the principal’s office twice a week. Either way, the run was over.

It was the best two days of my life up to that point.

Dating is fun. The feeling of having a hand to hold is like no other in the world. I have never forgotten how much I enjoy that.

Amanda and I go out on a lot of dates. We like to hold hands. I can quickly conjure up the feeling that comes with the first time I held a girls’ hand and I do my best to do that whenever I hold Amanda’s hand. I don’t have to. I could just take it for granted the way I do most good things in my life, but I don’t.

I enjoy dating my wife. I really like holding her hand.

Peace, Love, and all things Beef related,