Believe it or not, there is a story behind Side Hugs. Or, at least, a story behind the name. This story just so happens to coincide with one of the more embarrassing things I’ve done in recent history, so I hope you enjoy.
To put it succinctly: I once bought a dress for a wedding I was not invited to.
Why, you may ask?
So I could run into this really great guy I had met the week before.
We’ll call him Mr. Forearms for now. Mostly because he wore a lot of three-quarter length sleeves.
And because he had great forearms. Man. Don’t you wish you could just turn off the release of dopamine and norepinephrine into your brain and remain physically indifferent to any attractive person? Yeah, me too. Anyway.
This brings me to the wedding. When I realized that Mr. Forearms was going to be there, I decided to get myself an unofficial invitation from a family member who was attending. Not only that, but I was so determined to get to this wedding that, before I even got the invitation, I bought a dress.
And why hadn’t I been invited to the wedding? Because I didn’t know the couple. I still don’t know them, actually. I hope that they are really happy wherever they are.
So picture me driving forty minutes to a ranch, walking in twenty minutes late (in a really cute dress), sitting underneath the blazing sun in a black cardigan, sweating in unmentionable places, watching some random people get hitched.
Have you ever seen that scene in (500) Days of Summer that shows Tom’s expectations versus his reality? You can only imagine me envisioning the two of us sitting in a corner, talking during the reception, and him realizing that he couldn’t live without me. That was my expectation.
My reality: A forty-five second conversation with a tall, handsome, friendly caucasian male with nice forearms. Oh, and let’s not forget.
A side hug.
Ooooh yes. He moved in for a side hug. Let’s talk about it.
Let’s keep talking about me receiving a side hug and why they are The Worst.
Here is a conversation I had with a friend afterwards, over-analyzing the situation:
ME: He gave me a side hug. What does that mean?
FRIEND: Well, it could go either way. Who initiated it?
ME: HE did. But I don’t know if it was a, “Hey, I am attracted to you and would like to touch you,” or, “Hey, I’m a really friendly guy and I give EVERY girl a side hug.”
FRIEND: Or, it could be completely neutral and not mean anything.
ME: This is the worst.
A side hug is something that most people have an innate hatred toward because of the large margin it leaves to make a situation really weird. What it all boils down to is that they’re pretty lame in most situations, but there’s always that one person with whom you’d rather keep your distance. In that case, the side hug is your savior.
So to all you emotional wrecks: You’re not alone. I’m pretty sure every person over 16, possibly younger, has become deranged at some point trying to get the attention of the opposite sex. At least that’s what I tell myself. And, on the bright side, I now have a great story to tell. If anyone has any similar stories please feel free to share—especially if they include side hugs.