Teen boy rides off with girl's bicycle in hilarious misunderstanding

Tracey Folly

*This is a work of nonfiction based on actual events as told to me by a family member, who experienced them firsthand; used with permission.

My mother has always been a romantic, even when she was a teenager. When she was fifteen years old, she had a crush on a neighborhood boy who didn't seem to know she existed. One day, she decided to change that.

Her friends kept telling her to let the boy know how she felt. "After all, he might feel the same way about you," her friend reasoned.

On a hot summer day, my mother rode her bicycle to the park where her crush was blanking basketball alone. She saw him shooting hoops, and she mustered up her courage to tell him she liked him. What better time to tell him than when he was happy, relaxed, and enjoying his favorite pastime?

My mother had a crush on this boy since she was in the first grade, and he would be a senior in high school in the fall. She was afraid if she didn't tell him that day on the basketball court at the park, she might lose her chance forever. Maybe some other girl would catch his eye, or they would make it through his final year of high school without connecting, and then he'd graduate and move away. She couldn't take the chance.

According to my mother, knowing she was about to make the first move made her feel very grown up. She hoped she could convince the object of her affection they were destined to be together.

She climbed off her bicycle and rolled it the rest of the way onto the basketball court. Before she could say anything, her crush met her halfway and said hello. Then he asked her if she was okay.

"Maybe I looked flushed," my mother told me.

My mother told him she was okay and asked him if they could talk. When he didn't respond, she began rambling about how much she'd liked him ever since she was in the first grade and how she'd always hoped he would ask her out as they got older, but he never did.

"Now that we are nearly adults, I wanted to ask you if you feel the same way about me?" my mother asked him.

He replied he did not. "Your mother and my mother are friends," he told her. "If anything, I've always thought of you like a little sister."

That was not the response my mother wanted to hear. She persisted. "If you were my boyfriend, I'd give you anything," my mother blurted. "Whatever I have is yours."

The boy perked up. "Well, in that case, I guess we could try dating," he said. With those words, he hopped onto my mother's bicycle and started to pedal away.

"Wait," she called out. "That's my bicycle."

To his credit, he returned immediately. He was laughing. "I'm sorry," he said. "When you told me whatever you have is mine, I thought that included your bicycle."

My mother and her not-so-secret crush had a good laugh about it, but they never ended up dating. He did, however, return the bicycle.

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