So I know it’s kind of late for me to be writing anything about Thanksgiving, but I’m gonna go ahead and play the fibro card, because if I can’t use it in situations like this then really, what’s the use?
Anyway. Last month when the six of us were all together for the holiday, for some reason the talk turned to comparing our really bad dating experiences, and of course when you get a whole group of people together there will be a lot of stories to choose from. But here are the three that stuck with me.
The first one happened to me. And it actually has a title, as in, “Hey, Jen-tell that story about [first name] “The Good Catch” [last name]. This refers to a boy I dated in college who shall always be referred to in this way in my family, henceforth and forevermore, world with out end, Amen.
We spent a nice summer going out together-or so I thought. Then one day he picked me up and we went to the park to feed the ducks, and it became quite clear to me that we had broken up-but he had not found it necessary to share this particular bit of information with me.
So we were sitting on a little dock overlooking the pond where he explained his decision to me in that, “Well, I just know that I’m a good catch.”
“Well,” I retorted, never at a loss for words, “SO AM I!” And then I glanced over his shoulder to see if it would be possible to push him over into the water. But unfortunately there was a railing in the way. Stupid railing.
How this story ended: The following spring my parents got a letter from X “The Good Catch” Y, in which he explained that he had been called to go on a mission trip to Russia, and would my parents please choose to support this ministry in the form of sending him some handfuls of money?
But unfortunately for him, that was the semester in which I was reading the book The Dance Of Anger. And as it turned out? I had quite a lot.
And so I wrote a letter to Mr. “Good Catch” wherein I explained that I thought he had a lot of damn nerve asking people for money to support a mission trip when he treated the people around him so badly. And then I stole the letter from my parents (who are nicer, much more generous people than I am) and threw it away. I REALLY SHOWED HIM.
So then the talk turned (OK, I turned it) to a girl my husband dated in college who, not to put too fine a point on it, was a mess. And being the loving wife that I am, I decided to share about how one day she convinced my husband to cut her hair.
Horrified gasps from all the women at the table.
“Well now,” said my husband, “in my defense, all I did was even out her bangs.”
“NO!!” “NOT THE BANGS!!”
It did not go well.
How this story ended: Eventually my husband graduated from college and they broke up. And then we got back together. And then one day while I was over at his house he found an old picture of “The Witch Woman” (as I jovially referred to her). And then his mother decided that we should go outside and burn that picture right up. And so we did. She led a very solemn high, candlelit procession out onto the patio, set the picture on fire, and then we all stamped that sucker right down to ashes. It was awesome.
But the best story shared during that conversation-and quite possibly, the Best Breakup Story Ever Told, was something that happened to a friend of my mother.
One of her friends was dating a guy for a few months, and-again!-she thought everything was going well. And then that summer he went on a mission trip-again! with the missions!-and when he came back he told her, completely out of the blue, “We can’t see each other anymore.”
The woman was kind of taken aback, and quite naturally asked why this was. In reply to which the guy replied:
“Well, ever since we’ve been going out I’ve had this skin rash. And then when I went away on this trip it cleared up. And so then I realized that GOD SMOTE ME WITH THIS RASH, because I wasn’t supposed to be dating you.”
How this story ended: DOES IT EVEN MATTER?
Serious. Relationship. Fail.