Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Hard Luck Woman...

See, here's what happens; I have these moments of weakness. I know exactly how they feel & when they're occurring, but I'm helpless to them. They happen anytime the Ego Monster gets bruised. The Ego Monster & I are very close, you see. We first met when I was around 16 or 17; basically I just woke up one day & he was there. I dunno why he picked me as his symbiotic host; I'm certainly not the richest, most handsome, or smartest guy on the block...or probably even in the building. There's never been any rhyme or reason for his existence; sometimes he's just a handy defense mechanism, sometimes he's just a genuine asshole, both in about equal proportions...but he's always sincere; he truly believes himself to be Joe Cool, Mr. Smooth, The Duke of New York, A-Number One, the Big Man, that's who.

We've never learned to peacefully co-exist, even after all these years, but he's generally easily placated & mostly quiet, and usually only surfaces in certain situations, and even those are more & more rare these days. As belligerent & arrogant as he is, however, it takes a lot to set him off...but there's one thing he just cannot cope with; breakups.

No matter who the girl might be that I was breaking up with; whether it was me doing the breaking up or her, whether it was one that I had real feelings for or not, The Ego Monster would immediately kick in like the Manchurian Candidate; he'd take over, and bring the jealousy with him. Now, I've mentioned my jealous tendencies before, but I feel the need to clarify this trait of mine a little further; I'm not your typical, controlling, abusive, "
where have you been - who's on the phone - this doesn't look like one of my socks?" kind of jealous...most of my jealousy comes after the relationship; The Ego Monster cannot stand the thought of the person I just broke up with meeting or being with someone else before I do...at at least before a period of mourning time deemed sufficient by me has passed (usually decades...or at the very least enough time for Def Leppard to put out a new record, whichever came first).

What this basically means is, I might not want to be with you, but I want you to
want to still be with me anyway; so if I break up with you & by some chance you meet someone soon afterward, or if it was you that did the breaking up (especially if it was you), then the Ego Monster must do everything he can to make sure he scores the first blow on the rebound board.

This fucks me every single time.
It happened with Andi, it had happened somewhat with Gloria, it had happened on a grand scale with Kara, but that time it was pretty much intentional, but the first time it really started to screw up my life was later that summer...when Veronica entered my life. The Ego Monster's effects will be discussed in further detail later, but to fully understand it's impact on everything, it's neccessary to start with her story...

Veronica was the older sister of a mutual friend of mine, Alan, Pete & the gang. She was a couple of years ahead of us in school, and she used to run around in a little clique with Alan's 3 gorgeous sisters, so naturally half the guys in school had a crush on them back in the day. Veronica's brother Larry had moved away in his early teens to live with some relatives in NYC, because, to put it bluntly, his family is pretty insane & he wanted to escape that.

Right after high school, Veronica hooked up with a shady guy we all knew & ended up pregnant at an early age. They then married, and the marriage lasted only about a year & was extremely dysfunctional, and it really left some deep scars on the poor girl. Since the end of her marriage, she had been trying to re-connect with her old friends, but she was still deeply traumatized by what she had been through, and she was never really able to relate to her friends (or much of anyone) anymore. In fact, they didn't really like hanging out with her much anymore, because, although deep down she was the sweetest girl in the world & still had a good heart, she was now constantly moody, paranoid, and irrational.
I, however, was totally unaware of most of this; I had only known her as the hot older friend of Alan's hot sisters, and I had maybe bought some weed from the guy she married once or twice. So, when Alan & Pete & myself all showed up at Alan's sister Daria's house one night & Veronica was there, I just thought it might finally be my chance to hit on the hot older chick that I had thought was out of my league for so long. I had no idea that doing that would probably change the course of my life as much as anything I ever did.

There was a group of about five or six of us there, and at one point, Veronica & I ended up outside on the porch smoking a cigarette. We made some small talk, and I already could tell she was very vulnerable from her recent breakup, but I thought she was a genuinely sweet girl, and she was certainly very easy on the eyes...but in a very demure, ladylike way; she was one of those girls who could dress as conservatively as possible & still be beautiful. Certainly not my usual type, but it was in that post-Kara-wild-oats-sowing period, and it was a bit of a thrill to have a girl who would never have given me the time of day in high school seemingly all into me, and so I flirted with her for a while & told her we should get together sometime, not really thinking much about it.

In fact, most of the night I spent staring in awe at Alan's sister Daria, whom I've always thought was one of the most beautiful creatures ever to grace the earth with her presence. She was engaged by then, and still out of my league in any case, but whenever she's been around, it's always been hard to distract me. Nowadays she's like my other big sister, but this girl at 23 would have turned Richard Simmons straight...but I digress.

A few days later, I was sitting at home & got a call...from Daria, surprisingly enough. She asked me what I was up to & said she was hanging out with Veronica, and Veronica had wanted to know if I had plans that night. I have to admit, the Ego Monster got a little boost of fuel right there, 'cus it felt pretty cool to know that this girl we had all lusted after in school was still shy enough at 23 to have to get her friend to call & ask me out. So, grinning from ear to ear, I asked to speak to Veronica & she got on the phone. We didn't say much, but I asked her if she'd like to meet for a drink later, and she said she'd love to, so the date was on.

The bar was near my house, so we met there & took my car down to the place. I don't remember a whole lot about what we talked about there on our first date, and I should, because over the next several years, I would be reminded by her constantly of things I allegedly said that night, both good and bad, but mostly I just remember drinking vodka on the rocks 'til I was almost totally shit-faced, and her drinking margaritas on the rocks with salt 'til she wasn't too far behind. I do remember that she initially talked about her ex-husband a lot, but after a few drinks, she had a smile on her face a mile wide, and I could tell she was really having a good time...and I wasn't having a bad one, either. No instant sparks were flying on my end, but I thought she was a very sweet girl. And, I wondered once or twice whether she would sleep with me on the first date.

About an hour later, I found out the answer to that question, as we wound up on my bed, fumbling to get each other's clothes off not fifteen minutes after we'd walked into the house. I was completely drunk (and I still don't remember how we got home), but somehow I managed to at least get through the foreplay, but sure enough, when it came down to it, it turned out that all that vodka had gone straight to...well, wherever it is that makes keeping it up impossible, and for the first time, I found myself unable to properly fulfill my end of the bargain. She didn't take it personally, as we had both tossed back our share & she wasn't exactly in control of all her faculties, either, but we were determined not to waste the opportunity, so we messed around for a while best we could before passing out.

I awoke the next morning with her jumping out of bed; she had to get home to see to her little boy (she lived with her parents at the time). I remember watching her get dressed, and thinking to myself that I never thought, after all these years, I'd see Veronica (insert fake last name here) in her bra & panties slipping her dress back in the light of the morning sun by my bedside, and I remember thinking that the view was worth the wait, and feeling more than a little cocky. If only I'd known then... Anyway, I got up to kiss her goodbye, but she was a bit stand-offish the morning after; she didn't seem like she regretted it or had done something that she hadn't wanted to, but I knew she was vulnerable & a little nervous as to how to behave, and I could tell she was uncomfortable, as I had been the first guy she had been with since her husband. I tried to be as gentlemanly as I could, but she left in a big hurry, and I wondered if we would ever get together again. I had hoped we hadn't done anything she would regret, and I didn't want her to be upset, but past that, I really didn't give it much thought.

The next few days went by uneventfully, but after I hadn't heard from her since the previous weekend, I decided to call Veronica a few days later. On my first try, her mother answered the phone in a very cold, short tone (which I would learn soon would be the norm for this deeply troubled woman), and after a short pause, during which I clearly heard Veronica in the background, she came back & said she wasn't home. I thought it was strange, and the only reasons I could think of was that she had regretted sleeping with me on the first date or decided that I wasn't so interesting when sober. Either way, I didn't think much about it.

I called again the next day just to be sure I wasn't imagining things, but again, I got told she couldn't come to the phone, even though I was pretty sure she was there.
So, I pretty much decided to write it off. The poor girl had probably not even needed to start dating again so soon in the first place; she obviously still had a lot of issues to deal with, and I didn't relish the thought of playing rebound therapist. So, I scratched the name off my list, and since the weekend was coming up, prepared for another Friday night of mischief with the guys.

I remember we went to see
Demolition Man that night, and stopped at the bar for a few drinks & a game of pool afterwards. I had a pretty good buzz on, and we all went back to my place to smoke a joint before calling it a night. We sat around smoking & listening to The Yes Album for a while 'til everybody was ready to call it a night. I showed everybody out about a little after midnight, and sat down to watch TV, when all of a sudden, the phone rang. My heart jumped a bit in my chest, because late-nite calls had not been a normal occurrence at my place since Kara had been gone. I answered the phone with a little trepidation, and I breathed a sigh of relief when I realized it wasn't Kara, but my relief was immediately replaced with puzzlement, when I heard it was Veronica on the line.

She was crying. She was very upset...way more upset that I was comfortable dealing with, considering how little I really knew her. She started telling me all about her marriage, and how horrible things had been, and how horrible her life was at home now with her parents since she & the baby had moved back in, and she said she was sorry for avoiding me, but she thought that I might have been just trying to use her...or that I might even have been secretly hired by her ex-husband to get some dirt on her for the custody battle (this crazy notion was the first of many red warning flags that I didn't read the fine print on 'til later), and she knows that's
probably not true now, and would I ever consider giving it another shot?

Well, what do you say to that. I tried my best to be understanding & sweet...but I was more than a little freaked out. This girl was saying some really paranoid, off-the-wall things, and I was really taken aback by it...and it certainly wasn't making me want to rush into a relationship with her. In fact, I started looking for the most non-confrontational way that I could get off the phone & let her know that I didn't think a relationship was going to happen between us right now.

So, after another hour of listening & trying to calm her down & let her down gently, I finally managed to convey to her that I didn't think any one of us were ready for a relationship right now, and that she was a very sweet girl, but I think this is just not the right thing to do. She was upset, but she finally accepted what I was saying, and we ended the conversation amicably...and hopefully with her feeling a little less neurotic ( or at least she suppressed it well by the end). Nevertheless, afterwards, I was still a little freaked out, and I went to sleep that night wondering if I should maybe make a rule against one-night-stands, but knowing that I never would...'cus I suck.

The next day, I met the guys for drinks after work, and I told them what had happened. they weren't too shocked, since they were familiar with her & her family's history, and they just said it was probably a good thing I got out while I did. When I asked them why they hadn't told me she was so...troubled when I hooked up with her in the first place, they just said they had wanted to see what would happen; it might be funny. I love my friends...

So, that night, we all hung out at my place again for a while, and I remember the guys had to go home early for some reason, so I sat around in my room for a while, listening to the new King Crimson box set I had just bought & smoking out of my homemade Spider-Man bubble-bath bong, when I must have started to drift off to sleep. I don't know how long I was out, but I was awakened a while later by the sound of someone throwing rocks at my window. I looked at the clock & it was about 1:30 in the morning, so I knew that it was either big fun or big trouble outside...nothing in between.

The first thought that sprang to mind was Veronica; she had decided to plead her case in person...or perhaps kill me.
The next thought was Kara, but Kara wouldn't have knocked on the window; she knew a special way to climb up the side of the deck outside since she was so tiny, and she would have just done that. The guys already were here & gone...who could it be? I got up, threw a shirt on, and went to open the back door. If you had asked me to put a million dollars on the last person I'd expect to see at my house unannounced at 1:30 in the morning, you'd have won this bet for sure.

I opened the door, and it was Roxanne...


Blogger Jenifer D. recalled...

As much as you write about these folks, you could write a book about your whole life; oh that's right, I saw the American Pie movies. I used to think like you, and then I joined the military. That career move changed my life and now all those people who caused me grief in my twenties fear I might put a minefield in their front yard! =:-)

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 9:52:00 PM  
Blogger mad recalled...

wow...what a freak V was

Can't wait to read what happens with you and Rox...i bet she will be the sweet one...fingers crossed

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 9:52:00 PM  
Blogger Manda recalled...

ooooh... another big bad cliffhanger from the big bad boyfriend. :-)

i knew who it was before you even said anything. i'm just cool like that.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 10:00:00 PM  
Blogger Ana recalled...

V was not a freak she was a troubled girl looking for someone to comfort her and make her feel loved,special and wanted again. Serves u right for hooking up with someone u knew jack all about. I thought u wud have learned to be a bit wiser after the whole Paris incident. Especially since V spent almost the entire nite talking about her X Big warning sign there buddy. HUGE!

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 10:04:00 PM  
Blogger Girl Turned Sideways recalled...

this is cool....you're hilarious...keep it up maybe you can solve my issues :)

Good luck, hope i can give some insight :)

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 12:35:00 AM  
Blogger Reagan recalled...

Love it.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 1:07:00 AM  
Blogger chick recalled...

whoa u deleted my comment!!! because I SAW your slip up? LMAO!


Wednesday, October 12, 2005 5:50:00 AM  
Blogger MandyGirl recalled...

WOOOOOOHOOOOO...Roxanne! I'm not sure why that excites me so.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 8:03:00 AM  
Blogger firedancerdancin recalled...

i need cliffsnotes cause i've already forgot what her story was. time to backread again!

manda, you make me laugh.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 8:35:00 AM  
Blogger Joe recalled...

I feel like a chick because I'm liking this story, then it seems the comments all come from women..proving my point. You are just like me, a total loser that puts having a hot babe in the stable above everything else. Good man. Learning from your mistakes is for idiots.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 9:23:00 AM  
Blogger Tara recalled...

Hard Luck Woman - a Kiss classic. Perfect choice!

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 9:54:00 AM  
Blogger Moon Watcher recalled...

LOL@Cliff notes.. good one.

Next post! Next post! Checking this blog has become as routine as checking my email.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 10:51:00 AM  
Blogger MandyGirl recalled...

dude, melanie, keep up. ;)
you make me laugh too!

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 2:59:00 PM  
Blogger Charlotte recalled...

holy crap. damn you and your cliff hangers!!

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 4:05:00 PM  
Blogger James M. recalled...

Every time a cliffhanger...!

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 7:51:00 PM  
Blogger Scott Cunning recalled...

Damn you, you can't stop there. After I read 22 paragraphs? Aaargh.

I like your blog, btw.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 11:37:00 PM  
Blogger Strange Cargo recalled...

Your writing has really stayed with me. I only came accross your blog a few days ago and unfortunately I haven't rationed your entries, so I'm now dying to hear more. Your writing seems really honest. Liking it!

Thursday, October 13, 2005 3:00:00 AM  
Blogger scanime recalled...

I've had the same sort of Ego Monster bother me in the past. It probably had something to do with my own experiences of girlfriends leaving me for their exes...

Thursday, October 13, 2005 7:47:00 AM  

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