Bob is back, but not Darla. I wonder what’s going on…is she sick? Did she die in a freak accident? I hope not. The only fact from which I am able to draw any conclusions is the fact that she is not on the bus this morning, and look where my mind goes! Speaking of that, I spent the first hours of my five-day vacay thinking about Darla and her daughter Danielle, or Dani as her friends call her. Remember? I cast her as a character in a sitcom. “Roomies” is a TV show about Darla and Dani being college roommates at a Midwestern college. I worked on an episode where Darla gets her first smart phone, and being new to texting, she misuses acronyms like WTF and LMAO. Her naïveté somehow causes Dani a moment of humiliation, (never worked out the details) but in the end, all is forgiven. As Dani is consoling mom with a big hug in the final scene, Darla sobs, “LOL, hunny…lots of love, LOTS OF LOVE!” Anyway, I got bored. Ironically, I spent the final hours of my downtime humiliating myself via the same medium. However, in my own dreadful one act play, there is no laugh track, and all is not forgiven.
Texting has gotten me into a few jams in the past. Once, a man I barely knew showed up at my door for some ‘afternoon delight’ because he somehow mistook my playful reference to sexting as an invitation. That was awkward. Another time, a truly good man broke up with me, in part, because of a hurtful text I recklessly shot off after drinking alone all night. It is one thing to ‘drink and dial’ an 800 number at 2 AM and order a Total Gym, because I…I mean a person can return a Total Gym, but when you put words out there in a text, you can’t take them back. That breakup inspired a song about how I deserve to be alone. “That’s what you get” when you are selfish and careless and thoughtless.
Ironically, I was recording an acoustic version of that song at home last night. I was also feeling lonesome for the new man in my life. We’ve known each other only weeks, but both of us have been hopeful and happy with the way things have been progressing. During my days off, we were unable to see each other due to circumstances beyond our control. He had to work, tend to his Mother in the hospital, take care of her little dogs and then he came down with a nasty sinus infection. We had planned to talk on the phone last night, but he lost his voice. Therefore, without the benefit of our five senses, we communicated via text. How was he supposed to know I was listening to my confessional playing back through headphones, or that I was on the bottom side of a bottle of wine? How was he supposed to know that I missed him so much it hurt? How could he know that I was on verge of tears, when even I didn’t know? You are correct. Nothing good can come of this.
All it took was one, silly bit of text. It is hardly worth mentioning. I start by asking, “whatcha doing?”, and he says, “Dying.” I say, “You’re making me sad…bet you’re a terrible patient.” Blah, blah, blah and yada, yada, yada. Somehow, I end up saying I never want to live in Nebraska, Iowa or Blaine. He adds Malaysia. I suggest we compile a list, and then leave the conversation to wash my face and scour the red wine off my teeth. I come back to a text: “Got one. St. Paul #1”
In the light of day, I thought this was hilarious. I would have expected nothing less. He always digs me about the city I live in, and I am always on the defensive. I left the door wide open for him to offer St. Paul as the #1 place he will choose never to live. If he were teasing me in person, with the benefit of my five senses, I would have punched him in the arm or given him a look. Instead, seeing the words hanging there, I burst into tears. In my state of mind, all I saw were the words of a man who thinks I’m not good enough for him. Stupid, I know. I told him he was mean and that I was sick of the joke, and going to bed. I woke to a text saying “…I think a reassessment on my end is in order…disappointed in your reaction.” After I sent a ‘please forgive me’ text, two ‘this is why I hate texting’ texts, and finally a text in defense of my state of mind, I gave up. If a man chooses to pass judgement on me and reassess a relationship based on a single, stupid, thoughtless text, I owe it to myself to give up. I am the one most disappointed…and, [CUT]
The bus home has such a different vibe than the bus to work. It is super noisy tonight. One girl has an iPad video of her school daytrip that she is passing around. Eight or nine kids are laughing hysterically and bouncing in their seats as they watch. It’s actually pretty good. I’m sitting next to a Somali gal who works as a wheelchair pusher for the airport and also at the retail store ASAP. I never noticed until tonight that we get off at the same stop. I have to start paying more attention to the things that matter.