Kaitlyn Smith / Daily Nexus

Exes and O’s

By Kayura Narayanan

As all cursed and evil things do, it started as a friends-with-benefits situation, where I was no better than a horse being blindly led towards a pail of water (sex). It was the combination of sticky summer days and teenage hormones. I was a weak, weak woman and agreed to this “FWB” situation. The sex was banger, I was happy and nobody caught feelings. 

Until we did. In fact, we fell so hard and so fast that the relationship ended three weeks after it started. I cried for 20 minutes in my mother’s black Toyota Corolla and then moved on with my life. 

Unbeknownst to me at the time, this ex of mine entered a “relationship” with me mere weeks after breaking off a previous situationship. After my tryst with Ex No. 1, I fell for a beautiful woman in my AP English Literature and Composition class who turned out to be the ex of Ex No. 1. We met, we flirted and I laid my rizz on thick. I was unsure of her feelings towards me until we kissed in the moonlight on the street in front of her house. We dated passionately for about a month, yet I was not prepared for the onslaught of betrayal I was about to experience. She was still in love with her ex, who was now coincidentally also my ex. Now, I would have been somewhat content and undisturbed if she got back together with my ex (her ex?), but it was revealed that Ex No. 1 still liked me.

What did I do in this situation, you ask? I ran away to college (don’t tell anyone, but I hooked up with Ex No. 1 over winter break). Words of advice from a veteran lesbian dater: Do not date lesbians unless you are prepared to enter at least one Wattpad-esque love triangle (it was hell).

Puke and peck

By Alice Zhang

It was my sophomore year at UC Santa Barbara when I met this guy through a mutual friend. At the time, I don’t think I was really looking for a relationship, but rather feeling FOMO since all of my friends were in one. I talked to the guy for maybe a week or so before we went on a date. First was dinner; he picked a really nice place downtown, but I couldn’t eat half of the things on the menu (I was vegetarian at the time). He went on a bit of a tangent about how he thought vegetarians and vegans put themselves on a pedestal, which I found kind of distasteful. It was a turn-off but I dealt with it since the rest of the dinner went somewhat smoothly. Later, we met up with some friends for a movie, then went back to my place where he pulled out a huge flask. Apparently, he stole the flask from our friend’s place while we were watching the movie. He said that he’d never been on a single date where he didn’t drink. I told him that I had an 8 a.m. the next day and wasn’t really in the mood for drinking. He proceeded to get blackout drunk and I had to babysit him all night while he puked all over my couch. When he sobered up, he didn’t even offer to help clean up. I had to call the friend from whom he stole the flask for help. A few days later, he texted me out of the blue, saying that he thought we really clicked and that we should do it again. I think I spoke a total of 20 words to him the entire night. Luckily, we haven’t had any classes together since then, but I avoid him now whenever we bump into each other on campus. 

The boys down the hall

By Diana Mateescu

On the first day of fall quarter, my RA held a hall meeting so we could all meet the people living on our floor. My roommate and I set eyes on a group of three guys that lived on our floor and she pointed out one of them as a potential love interest. Since they were some of the only sociable people on our floor, we became acquainted, and I quickly developed a crush on the one she had identified 

But before I could pursue my crush, one of his roommates started hitting on me. At first, I thought he was just being friendly and mistook his interest in me for a genuine desire for friendship. However, he quickly made his intentions clear and while I thoroughly enjoyed the attention, I shut it down before anything got too far and let him know I wasn’t interested in hooking up with him. (Has he not heard that you shouldn’t hook up with people that live on your floor?) 

After about a week, my attention was back to my original crush. We got along super well and would often spend a surprising amount of time talking whenever we ran into each other in the halls. I noticed his body language every time we talked, and with the encouragement of my roommate, I convinced myself he was into me. I was once again loving the attention and was working up the courage to make a move past the casual flirting we regularly exchanged. However, one day after Thanksgiving break, I knocked on his door to ask for a favor and he opened the door while on the phone with somebody. Before I could say anything, he turned the phone towards me and enthusiastically said “Say hi to my girlfriend!” I had to hold back my laugh and quickly ran to my roommate to tell her what had just happened. Honestly, I’m not even mad, I just miss the attention.

The strangest date 

By Riley Burke

I was barely 18 and I was far from home at George Washington University, where I transferred from to end up at UCSB. I met a boy from a neighboring school at a friend’s dorm party. He was charming in an awkward sort of way, the kind of awkward one could only expect from a boy double majoring in philosophy and government at Georgetown University. 

He asked me out on a real date. That was new for me. He wanted to take me to an art museum — an avant-garde, drastically modern art museum 45 minutes outside of the city. Also new. I accepted. 

On the day of, he appeared in front of my dorm. 

No, actually, he did not. They did. Unbeknownst to me, he brought a friend. 

They chatted as we waited for an Uber and I began the tedious task of trying to get a word in otherwise. Suddenly, I was a third wheel on my first real date. He sat up front with the driver, while I sat silently in the back with his friend. 

Once we arrived on the sprawling museum property, I recall it being hard to keep pace with the boys. I recall their conversation far surpassed the limits of my own intellectual capabilities. I stayed quiet and behind them. 

They smoked cigarettes in front of priceless outdoor art installations and got yelled at for smoking in front of the priceless outdoor art installations. 

By the close of the day, we found ourselves immersed in an avant-garde soundscape installation that paired sounds of the Vietnam War with Baroque opera. There were chopper blades and arias and the many sounds of destruction. I looked at the two boys with me on this “date.” I couldn’t help but think: Why the hell am I here?


A version of this article appeared on pg. 14 of the Feb. 16, 2023 edition of the Daily Nexus.