Happy Sunday everyone. I hope you’re having a lovely day.
For the last few Sundays we’ve been reading sections of Anonymous’s story. It looks like we’re going to have to wait another week to learn how that story ends – sorry. But hey, I’ve always been a big fan of suspense.
Lucky for us, we have an amazing story by a different guest author, Mr. Nice Guy.
“A long time ago, in a University far, far away… I was a geek. Well, OK, so I still am. On the other hand, I was a geek who girls have always felt safe with – you know, the guy who’s your best friend, who would never push his luck even when you’re drunk (and will mop up your vomit when you miss the sink), who’ll put you to bed when you can’t stand (and won’t look under your dress), who listens while you cry about your most recent bastard boyfriend (and isn’t looking down your bra). Yup, that was me – and still is.
On the other hand, I was on the Student Council. That’s what attracted PBFH to me: she liked men who were popular or in positions of power. Of course, I didn’t know this at the time – I quite unreasonably assumed she liked me for who I was.
We dated for a few months at University. It was a good time. We were almost complete opposites: I’m a very late developer who went to an all-boys school and had his first kiss at 19, while she was active in her early teens; I’m a computer geek and she was a playwright; I’m plain while she was a cheerleader. For me, this meant a whole host of new experiences – I learned about theatre and more about films, my love of language meant I could edit her work to help out, she got me exercising and eating better, and in bed, well… let’s just say I’d never experienced anything quite like it.
But somewhere, at the back of my mind, there was a little alarm going off. I was the one getting up early to type and edit her plays, so she could come along later and work on the next scene. Her parents were independently wealthy, but I still paid for just about everything. When she did pay for something, it was mostly to use her parents’ AmEx card and annoy them. Heck, I even paid for an overseas holiday for both of us, using my bank overdraft.
I convinced myself that this was normal, of course. I’d been brought up to respect women and to treat them right. By sacrificing some of the things I wanted to do, she was happier, so everything was good. Right up until the “yoghurts in the fridge moment.” That’s what made me realise just how selfish she was. There was a yoghurt left in the fridge, you see, and she ate it…
…without asking if I wanted it.
Now, you know as well as I do that – had she asked – I’d have happily let her have the yoghurt. No problem at all. But she didn’t ask. She just took it and ate it. From that moment on, I was suddenly a lot more aware of just how many things in our relationship were one-sided. All the work. All the effort. All the money. A lot of the love.
When I caught her cheating on me a couple of weeks later, I did something of which I’m still not very proud: I pretended to lose control. I trashed the entire apartment (except for my stereo and computer gear, of course) purely for effect: I’d guessed at least a week earlier that she was cheating and I was just waiting to catch her. The only thing that stopped me destroying everything in the apartment was the look of fear on her face. Even though she was the PBFH, I couldn’t scare her with physical violence – that simply wouldn’t be right.
So we broke up. I went away for a week just after the whole thing happened and, when I came back, you know what she’d done? She hadn’t just moved out. She’d taken a whole bunch of stuff with her and left me a bill for my half of the things she’d left behind, that we’d bought together. A bill. From an independently wealthy woman who cheated on her man to a guy who’d been faithful and who was living on a single baked potato for lunch every day because he couldn’t afford anything else. Lovely.
I learned a lot from PBFH and, in some bizarre way, I’m grateful. Not only for what she taught me about selfish women, and not for the two years of solitude it took to get over the pain of it. Not for finally being able to use the line “I’d like to bury the hatchet,,, in his head” when I saw her again and she asked how I felt about her man. And not even for the moment when we turned up at a University party at the same time and her man hid in the bar all night out of fear (I’m a pacifist, by the way, which makes it even funnier).
No, not for any of those things, but for the way she made sure that my next (and still current) relationship would last and would be based on healthy things like mutual respect, understanding and quite disgusting amounts of lurve!
So yes, I’m grateful. But then I also hope that, wherever she is, she’s in a lot of pain.
P.S. The abbreviation PBFH is used because I don’t like swearing. She is the Psycho Bitch From Hell, and the only person for whom I will use the B-word.”
Tags: bitch, geek