The Last Rolo

Posted by Judy Johnson On Sunday, 8 August 2010 14:03
A boy gave me Rolos once. Well, I say ‘gave’, he slipped them into my pencil case. This is no metaphor. He put them in my pencil case and that was supposed to woo me.

Things were so simple back then. If only a man would give me a bar of chocolate (Maltesers actually, if you’re asking) today and that would be it. Yes please or no thank you, all sorted, sweet tooth and love in one swift gesture, like those adverts where she knows it’s true love because he just gave her some (actual) sugar.

Only, it’s not that simple. Because for one, I would feel a bit gutted if I turned down some free chocolate. This is possibly a great dating tip for a guy, because, men, if you’re listening – women can’t say no to chocolate. It’s just not right. The answer is always yes. Perhaps though, you could sneak it into our handbags much like…well, let’s call him X. Because then, we get to keep the chocolate either way – in fact, it can even help us to mull over our thoughts of you, with a cup of tea.

But, you see, then we might feel guilty. Like I did back then. Eleven years old and there were already mind games going on. Should I give them back, I thought. No, that would be rude. Should I eat them then, I thought. No, that’s even ruder. I was a well mannered young girl. So I left them in the pencil case and ignored the looks of my classmates who clearly knew exactly what was going on long before I did. I smuggled them home (it wasn’t sweet-day, so mum would have asked questions), and thought about it. I wasn’t one to waste chocolates, particularly Rolos. So I shared them with my sister – I thought that was fair.

But the next day at school of course I had to say something. Well. X and I ‘went out’ for two days, and then I sneaked something into his pencil case – a note, saying ‘Sorry, but I think we should just be friends. P.S. thank you for the Rolos’. Cut throat, I know. But then nowadays, what would I do? Send him a virtual pint on Facebook and say sorry, I think we should just be non-talking Facebook friends? At least it was handwritten.

Dating as a grown up is much more complicated than a note and a tube of Rolos. For a start, the men don’t just rock up to your pencil case and decide they like you; they’re harder to find in the first place and that’s just the start, before nerves, feelings and life gets in the way. They're also less sure of what they want and there's all sorts of mind-boggling going on so you never quite know where you stand. The game playing is only fun if you both get to play. At least when I was eleven the game involved me getting the last Rolo…
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