Tag Archives: relationships

Story of the Day: 2-12-11

Be Here Yesterday

In the post from two days ago (which was really written this morning because I’m massively behind), I said that there were only two things I remembered about Don’s ex-girlfriend, Erin. That is not true. There are actually three things I remember about her. And the third thing is another of my favorite all-time stories, because it is a perfect encapsulation of the difference between men and women. This is a short one, but it is profound.

Erin’s family was from Connecticut, not far from the city, so she went home fairly often. One week, when she was home for an extended visit, Don was supposed to drive to her parents’ place on Thursday for a long weekend. He called that day to tell her he had to work and he wouldn’t be able to come out until Saturday. She got pissed off, they got in a huge fight, and she ended up hanging up on him and ignoring his calls for the rest of the day.

The next day, she finally picked up the phone. Once again, they got into a huge fight. No matter what solution Don offered, Erin kept batting it down. Finally, at the end of his rope, he said, “Let’s just stop for a minute. I want to make this better. Whatever it takes, I will do it. Just tell me what I can do to make this better.”

Her brilliant response: “Be here yesterday.”



Filed under Story of the Day

Story of the Day: 1-20-11

The Ultimate Sweet Revenge: Part 3

My cool guy act lasted approximately 3 hours. That’s how long it took me to get through my first class of the day and realize I’d just made a terrible, terrible mistake. The chances that I would ever get another girlfriend, let alone a girlfriend as cool and gorgeous as Denise, were slim. If she was sleeping with another guy, I would just have to learn how to work around it.

I called her around noon to retract my breakup.

“I think I was a little rash,” I said.

“Maybe,” she said, “but it’s for the best.”

“Or is it?” I countered.

“I think so.”

“No!” I wailed. “You can’t do this to me!”

And so forth.

It did not take long for Denise and I to become friends again. We had to go through the necessary cooling-off period. But I realized after a few weeks of sulking that in my two years of pining away, I had created an image of her that was impossible for anyone to live up to. I also think my fear of losing her became a self-fulfilling prophecy, in that I was so eager to please her I buried the part of me that was attractive in the first place. I’m talking, of course, about my giant cock. I buried my giant cock.

About a month later, Denise began officially dating Tom, as we all sort of assumed the case would be. I had never met him, but I hated his guts. Which, normally I don’t endorse hating the person your ex- leaves you for, because the ex- was the one who made the decision, not the other dude. But when your ex- leaves you for a slickster in a rockabilly band who looks like Leo from Twin Peaks, you may hate him at will.

Back when Denise and I were madly in love, we had chosen our entire class schedule together. Not a day went by that we didn’t see each other, even during the tense few weeks following the breakup. The best of these classes was our film class, which had a screening every Wednesday night. One Wednesday shortly after we split up, Denise called me to tell me that Tom was visiting and he was coming to the movie with her that night.

“So I understand if you don’t want to sit together,” she said.

It was the perfect setup for me to regain a shred of my tattered dignity. This joker might have stolen my girl, but I wasn’t about to give him the satisfaction of thinking that I was avoiding him. 

“I’d love to meet him,” I said. “How would you and Tom like to come over before the movie and smoke a bowl with me?”

“Um, are you sure that’s a good idea?” Denise asked.

“Totally,” I said. “It is a totally good idea.”

And so it came to pass that I smoked a bowl with my ex-girlfriend and the man she left me for. Tom seemed like a nice guy, but he was no match for my superior intellect and impressive weed-smoking abilities. I was on my A-game, cracking jokes and appearing for all the world to be the hostess with the mostest. (Sidenote: Autocorrect just changed that to “moistest,” which I kinda prefer.) 1/2 an hour into the encounter, Tom and I were the best of friends. So skilled was my performance that he barely even blinked as I pulled out a knife and thrust it into his trachea.

Not quite. But I did get my revenge. Once we were well-stoned, my eyes wandered over to a tiny cowboy hat that was hanging on the living-room door handle. I rose from the couch and grabbed the hat.

“Look at this tiny hat,” I said.

“Huh huh huh,” said Tom.

“You would look awesome in this tiny hat,” I said.

“Hell yeah!” Tom agreed. “Gimme that thing.”

I handed him the hat. He put it on. 

“That is hilarious,” I said. “You know what would be even more hilarious? It would be even more hilarious f you wore that tiny hat to the movie.”

“Huh huh huh,” he said. “That would be even more hilarious.”

And he totally did it! He did it. He may have been sleeping with the love of my life. He may have been a rockabilly rockster with cool hair who probably went on to have a far more successful career than I have had. But I made him wear a fucking tiny cowboy hat in public.

And that, my friends, is the Ultimate Sweet Revenge.

Leave a comment

Filed under Greatest Hits, regular

Story of the Day: 1-19-11

The Ultimate Sweet Revenge: Part 2

It quickly became clear to everyone but me that this relationship was not going to last. Any relationship with that much of a power imbalance is not going to be healthy. I worshipped the ground Denise walked on; to her, I was good enough for the time being if a little out of shape and sort of annoyingly clingy. It was only a matter of time before things got weird. About three months, to be precise.

Denise’s best friend from high school went to college in Kalamazoo, and Denise would visit her there every few weeks. A few weeks into our senior year, I started hearing about these two guys in a rockabilly band. “You’d love them,” she’d say. “They’re so funny.” I was pretty sure I would not love them and they were not that funny. Still, I kept my opinions to myself, knowing that Denise was a delicate flower and all I had to do was act a little wacky for her to fly out of my hand and into the pompadoured hair of some rockabilly asshole.

One weekend, the guys were coming to Ann Arbor to visit. I wanted to be cool about the whole thing, so I called Denise early on Friday evening. “Hey,” I said. “I know Bill and Tom [maybe their real names; I don’t really remember] are coming into town tonight. I’d love to meet them! I think we’d really get along well. So, let me know what you’re doing and I can come meet up with you!” 

Denise did not call me all evening. This was before the age of cell phones. It was even before the age of pagers. My only option was to leave messages on her home phone, which I did repeatedly, in a manner that became increasingly more frantic and desperate as the night wore on. 

I barely slept that night, knowing these two other guys had come into town to poach my girlfriend and didn’t even have the decency to meet me and shake my hand before they did so. At about 8:00 in the morning, I couldn’t take it any longer. I drove my beat up Toyota Tercel over to Denise’s house and let myself in.

Everyone was still asleep when I arrived. It was 8:00 in the morning and we were in college. I crept up the stairs to her bedroom, my heart pounding in my chest. I don’t know where else my heart would pound. That is where it’s located. 

I swung open the door to her bedroom and my heart leapt out of my chest and dropped to the ground with a nasty, bloody splat. Denise was lying in her bed, and she was not alone. One of the two hilarious rockabilly bastards — I wasn’t sure which one — was curled up next to my girlfriend, looking awful cozy. 

Denise’s eyes fluttered open and caught mine. I closed the door and walked down to the kitchen. Keeping my nerves in check as best as I could, I stepped over to the refrigerator and calmly poured myself a glass of orange juice. 

A moment later, Denise ran down the stairs after me.

“It’s not what it looks like,” she said. “I wasn’t about to make him sleep on the couch.”

Of course! Why would she?

After a long night of desperation and heart-vomiting, I knew what I had to do. I would be calm, cool, and collected. I would be mature and nonchalant. I only had one chance to play the situation exactly right, to grab hold of the reins of power and show her that I could step up and be a man when the situation called for it. 

“Denise,” I said. “I think we should break up.”

And with that, I slammed the rest of my orange juice and walked out of the house.

— to be continued —

Leave a comment

Filed under Greatest Hits, regular