by Erik Campano
CHARACTER: Miles Emory Jones
So, now we’ve kissed. We know that we’re attracted to each other. [pause] Yes, you’re right, really attracted to each other.
I have something to tell you now. And after I tell it to you, you are almost certainly going to make the decision not to ever kiss me again. At least, not ever tell anyone about it. [pause]
Yes you’re right, I am classy and intelligent. But I don’t think you’ve googled me, have you? [pause]
If you google me, you’re going find something very embarrassing. [pause]
No, no, you don’t understand. It’s not like everyone else. You’re not going to want to go back to your friends and family and say, oh yeah, I’m going out with Miles Emory Jones.
So, I dated Cameron Diaz. [pause]
Um hm, yeah, we met at the New York Public Library. I’m in there reading the history of the French Revolution and she sits down next to me and pulls out a book on… the French Revolution. And I look at her and I’m like, “oh, you’re also reading about the French Revolution.” And I knew immediately it was Cameron Diaz. But I didn’t really care, because she’s a celebrity, and I have this thing with celebrities, the last thing they want is for people to act weird around them, so if I ever meet a celebrity I just act normal. That’s my rule. And so we start talking about the French Revolution. She’s also a French Revolution buff. And it was like 5 pm and we were both tired anyway so talking about it was more interesting than reading about it. And we’re talking and talking and talking and so we’re just like, why don’t we just get dinner? And we just… we just… I don’t know, we’re just like incredibly similar people. We started playing this game, where we’re like think of your favorite whatever and write it on a napkin and then we compare napkins. And we did this for like five things… and THREE of them were exactly the same. We both had the same favorite movie — Amadeus — and the same place we wanted to visit — Tanzania — and get this, the same animal, if we were going to be an animal — the OTTER. We both chose OTTER. Of all the millions of kinds of animals, we both want to be the same really rare animal, an OTTER. She TALKS just like me. It’s like when she’s talking, I’m hearing myself. I have simply never met anyone in the world who is as similar to me as Cameron Diaz.
So yeah, of course, all night we’re talking and talking and she lives in Midtown anyway, I was on my way to Grand Central to get the train back to Connecticut and we pass by her building but we clearly don’t wanna stop talking so I go into her lobby and we sit down on this table in this room, alone. And then at a certain point there’s that silence, when you know, you’re both, like, overcome with an image or a fantasy or whatever of kissing the other person, but you’re paralyzed by it. And we’re that way for like, I don’t know, 20 seconds and then I go, “I’m just really… … … impressed by you” and BOOM, that triggers it, she leans over and kisses me. And we make out for a while and it’s really tasty and…
…and then AARGH, after about a minute, I say to myself, “HOLY COW I AM KISSING CAMERON DIAZ”. And so I’m trying to push that thought out of my head, thinking to myself,
“she’s just a person, she’s just a person”, and I’m concentrating on that thought, and trying to concentrate on the kissing at the same time, and it’s going well and pleasurable anyway. So finally we stop making out and she looks at me and says:
It’s late. If you want you can crash upstairs.
And I’m like, no way, no way am I going to sleep with Cameron Diaz on the first date. That’s just too much. Too much. I know that’s a lot of guys’ fantasy but if you’re actually in that moment, trust me… I didn’t want it, you might not understand that so just believe me. So I’m like,
…I’m sorry… I just… I just… the implications of that…
She’s like, on the couch, on the couch.
So I do, I go upstairs and crash on the couch. And all night long I’m thinking “HOLY SHIT I kissed Cameron Diaz” and then “but she’s just a person, just a person,” and… [pause] what’s that? [pause] NO I didn’t, I got like one hour sleep. And she wakes up in the morning and comes into my room and I’m looking at her like [big wide eyes and reaching arms out] and she comes over and kisses me and then I’ve gotta leave for work.
So I get a text message at about 2 pm that day from her, it just says, thank you. and I write back, thank you. And she writes back, I’ll let you know my shooting schedule and text you when I find some free time during the week. P.S. That’s code for I really want to see you again.
So that was a Tuesday, and every day I’m waiting for a text message. And Tuesday night I don’t sleep at all, I’m just thinking, “I KISSED CAMERON DIAZ” and “BUT SHE’S JUST A PERSON” and so I don’t get any sleep and I’m beginning to suck at work. And she doesn’t text on Wednesday or Thursday and now I haven’t had any sleep for three days and I’m beginning to have panic attacks. Is she not gonna’ text me? But we were SO similar, it was like I met the female version of myself, I mean we could love each other, and “I kissed Cameron Diaz” and “she’s just a person” and urgh [pause]
YES there IS something wrong with me that I flip out so much. YES but I DON’T KNOW what’s wrong with me! [pause]
Anyway, finally on Friday she texts me and she’s like, Hi! I’m free tonight for dinner at the Rhinoceros Room — that’s like, the big celebrity restaurant in New York — “the check’s on the studio.” And I call her and I’m like, OK, and so I meet her there at six. But keep in mind that at this point I haven’t really slept for FOUR nights and I’m having anxiety attacks and hallucinating and shit but I go to the restaurant and we talk for the first 15 minutes about the French Revolution but I’m just not myself, and she can tell that, you know, I’m not like my conversational self. And then, sort of out of the blue, she goes,
Listen, Miles, there’s just something you should know about me, I need to be up front about this. I have a super busy schedule. I don’t lead a regular life. And then she goes, I just need you to know I don’t make promises I cannot keep for sure.
And she was trying to be nice by saying that, I think, but… but at the moment, I was so anxiety-ridden and freaked out that she didn’t like me any more or something. ‘Cause it’s Cameron Diaz, and she, she, she, she’s just a superstar and just like, glows, and I’m, I’m not high up there like that, for God’s sake I work at Dunkin’ Donuts, but she’s just a person, but… and I totally overreacted to what she said, and I’m like,
How can you say that to me? How can you freak me out like that? I’m so scared, so scared,
and she’s like you’re acting weird,
and I stand up and I’m like, “I’m weird? I’m weird? You call me weird? That’s so, oh my God… f… f… f… fuck you for saying that”…
And the restaurant goes silent. Everybody heard it. And she looks back at me and she says to me in this — get this — this SWEET, NICE voice:
OK well then, fuck you.
And then all these flash bulbs start going off. There’s papparazzi everywhere in this restaurant. And I’m like, I don’t know, how do you handle that situation? So I just start smiling, this really fake-looking grin — I mean it was real, it was embarrassment — but it looks really stupid and fake, and I just, like, walk out of the restaurant and turn onto a side street somewhere there on the upper West Side, I think it was 87th, and I start crying, totally bawling, snot dripping on the sidewalk, thinking to myself, “I MESSED IT UP with the LOVE of my LIFE” and look around, no one’s there, and I drop completely to the ground, I’m like lying prostrate and just screaming and sobbing — all that tension was being released from the last few days — and then FLASH — there’s this papparazzo standing over me, he took a picture of me like that. And I look back at him, screaming “FLY AWAY! FLY AWAY!” and I think he realizes I’m now insane and might get violent so he, like, backs off towards Broadway
So the next day, there I am, on the cover of the New York Post, in that position, on the ground. Headline’s “DUNKIN’ DONUTS DOOFUS DUMPS DIAZ!” And on the web they’ve got a video of us saying “fuck you” to each other. And of course, the thing goes viral. And everybody loves Cameron Diaz, so of course they all hate me, blogs, commenters, reprinting the story all over the place. And so what do I do? It’s the web, it’s the free market of ideas, right? So I start defending myself, trying to explain that I was really anxious and didn’t mean it, but instead everyone takes that to mean I’m insane, and unappreciative of the fact that CAMERON DIAZ wanted to date me, they’re calling me all kinds of names, dumbass, douchebag, some Spanish word for homosexual. And it’s all there, and there’s nothing I can do about it, and I haven’t slept now for five days, and I’m totally paranoid about everything, I just have to get away from it and check myself into Bellevue. So all the time I’m in the hospital, people are speculating about meonline, where did the doofus go? Did he jump off the George Washington bridge? Reporters are looking for me but they can’t find me. And after a week, the story’s over, it’s past its media cycle.
So anyway, NOW… TWO FUCKING YEARS LATER… when anyone googles my name, Miles Emory Jones, I’m the insane douchebag who told Cameron Diaz to fuck off.
So that’s why you shouldn’t date me. I have a horrible reputation online. The internet never forgets. You are not going to want to tell people that you’re dating me. [pause]
Thank you for saying you’re sorry. [pause]
Yes, I did. I figured, this situation has to be fixed. So I sent Cameron a text message. Hey, I’m really sorry what happened. Can we meet up for coffee, just some kind of reconciliation, some closure? Peace, Miles.
And I get a text back: FROM MS. DIAZ’S AGENT: Our counsel has instructed Ms. Diaz to have no more contact with you.
No, I mean, I like you a lot. I don’t get the feeling of total similarity with you that I had with Cameron. But yeah, I think you’re super attractive. [pause] I don’t know. I might flip out again. I don’t trust myself. [pause]
You’re welcome, but I don’t really have a choice but to share this story with you, do I? You’d find out anyway. Sooner or later, you’d google me. [pause] Yes you would. Or someone you know would. No matter how compatible I am with you – with anybody — they can’t date me. Unless I find someone who’s been as embarrassed as I have been, on the internet.
Uh-huh. Yeah, go ahead, google it on your iphone.
[pause -- watching as she scrolls]
See what I mean?
[pause -- watches as she stands up. places a kiss on a cheek. looks at her. signals that he’s listening to something she said]
That’s nice of you to say. Bye, then. [pause] Yes, I’ll wait for your text message. [walks off]