Recently I’ve been looking for a seasonal part-time job to make some extra dough, and I have filled out a few applications. Apparently the new thing is for the hiring company to ask questions that will speak to your character. Borders, for example, has a very lengthy section regarding how you are at work, how you would be at your new hypothetical job at Borders, and how you would handle certain scenarios (you are on break. you hear co-workers talking in the break room about a supervisor who is dating a subordinate do you: a) take part in the gossip, b) report them to a supervisor, c) listen but don’t take part in the gossiping , or d) wouldn’t pertain to me because all I want is a seasonal part-time job where I probably wouldn’t even get a break, nevermind sit down in a break room to listen about some nasty supervisor who is boinking the girl in Self-Help).
But there were questions that were sort of personal and I don’t think that a simple Strong Disagree, Disagree, Neutral, Agree, or Strongly Agree could really do any justice. For example, I was asked, “Have you ever gotten jealous of others’ good fortune?” Um, yeah, have you ever seen Extreme Makeover: Home Edition?? Or have you ever seen some redneck on TV win $100 Million in the lottery and after hearing them say “Why golly gosh darn gee, I sure as heck am going to go back to working in the factory tomorrow!” and then try to suffocate yourself with a throw pillow? Was I supposed to strongly disagree with this in order to get hired? No idea. But I wanted to answer honestly.
One of the other questions I was dying to check off “Strongly Agree” to but couldn’t because I didn’t want to be known as some Emily Dickinson hermit was: Do you feel like it’s a waste of time to make new friends when you know they will just let you down?
Ok I am paraphrasing there but that was the gist of it. And I wish there were a “Hells fucking yeah” radio button, because I would’ve chosen that. Instead I calmly chose “Disagree” because I didn’t want my future employee to think I was weird. But c’mon…my track record speaks for itself. And I think it’s about time to go over a few of my Friendships Gone Bad scenarios. Look, I may not be the GREATEST friend on the planet. Maybe I don’t return phone calls in a timely fashion, and maybe I’ve flaked on plans, but…I’m trustworthy, I’m LOYAL and I’m kind. I’m not going to stab you in the back or worse…
There is a good chance that a couple of people I mention in here (I’ll withhold names) may actually read this. Sorry. I guess. I mean, I’ve kept it inside all this time. And I think it’s time to say “Hey, what you did to me…it impacted my life. I carry it with me and no, I really haven’t gotten over it. Why did you do it? And why didn’t my feelings matter when you did it? What did I ever do to you to deserve being treated like shit??”
I had a best friend all throughout highschool and when we were seniors she started dating a boy. And it just so happened that he had an older brother and I liked him. And we hooked up (hey, this is high school here. When I say “hook up” I don’t mean Sex. Jeez. Kissing and stuff.) He was studly and drove a very cool convertible and it was fun. The double dating stuff. It wasn’t “serious”. I mean, I was only 18.
My best friend, whom I loved probably more than I did some family members (the first time I ever got drunk was at her house), broke up with her dude. And by this time, her dude, or ex-dude I suppose, and I were friends. And I knew she was going to break up with him. And why. But he didn’t know that. And he would call me and basically cry to me about the situation. I felt really bad, but what was I to do? I was loyal to her. I had her back. I never let on that she was seeing someone new. So I lied to him. But I did it to protect her. She was my best friend after all.
It was late summer and I was heading off to orientation at college. Without her. Sad. I might be taking liberties here, but I think I remember her driving me to the bus. Maybe not. I don’t know. But I do remember her picking me up and she had red marks on her neck. Hickies. But I knew she wasn’t with her beau the night before. What are those?? I got some story. Not hickies. And I believed her. Off to Amherst I went. “I’ll miss you. I’ll call you when I’m back.” Hugs.
A few days later when I was back, I called. No answer. Hmm, strange. She knew I was coming back. Back in those days it was honestly harder to get in touch with someone than it is today. We didn’t have Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, texts, cell phones, or emails. So you start the good old game of telephone tag and finding someone else who may have spoken to her.
I ended up calling another very good friend, and a very good acquaintance of both of ours. And almost immediately I knew something was wrong. It was like prying open the jaws of life, but she finally told me. She didn’t want to be the one to tell me. But my best friend, while I was gone, decided to flaunt her hickies and her new boyfriend to all our friends…and her new boyfriend was her old boyfriend’s brother….the one I was hooking up with. The one with the convertible. (With leather seats. Jesus.)
And so it began. I wish I had some awesome story to tell you about how they fell in love (in three days) and why neither one of them had the balls to tell me when I got back. And left it up to poor KP. Needless to say, I lost a lot of friends in that. A few of them didn’t really care how I felt about being betrayed and lied to, and still hung out with them. I tried to hang out with the group, but it made me sick to my stomach. So I was Audi 5000. Adios Assholes.
Let’s fast forward a few months. I’m off to college. Boys galore. I’m too lazy to look up this fact, but I’m guessing that the UMass Amherst campus has THOUSANDS (tens of thousands?) of students there on any given day. I had a crush on two of them. And they both happened to live on my floor at JA. (John Adams in Southwest for those of you who don’t know. And now you know!) My friends all knew I had crushes on them. It wasn’t a secret.
A girl I knew since first grade was also going to college there. I would even say we were pretty close and hung out a lot in high school. She lived in a completely different part of campus, but we still talked. And I’m 100% sure she knew I was head over heals for both of these boys, one of which had a girlfriend back at home in NY.
One night, I invited her over to hangout with my dorm friends (shout out to the 17th floor! Hmm, I hope I remember that right). We got drunk. Shocking. And the next thing I know, she is making out with boy #1 and then trying to make out (unsuccessfully, remember: gf back home) with boy #2. What. The. Fuck. Seriously??
Long story short, boy #1 (a senior) did actually like me. But that whole scenario…just fucked it up for the two of us. We never hooked up. And it took a very very long time for us to even hang out again and be friends. I didn’t want to stop being his friend though. I mean, our mutual crushes on one another were secrets from one another. But she…she KNEW I liked him. And she stuck her tongue in his mouth anyway. And then tried to put her mouth on someone else that I cared about the same night. She betrayed me. And, yeah, that friendship was never the same after that. It became more superficial. I just never felt comfortable telling her things when I thought it could end up hurting me.
Then, you know, my ex husband. Cliff Notes: my bestest friend in the whole world. And I married him. I trusted him with my life. And then I found out he was fucking his boss at work. Or at her house during the day when she should’ve been managing a Post Office, but maybe they were sneaking to her home in Quincy while her two pre-teen children were at school? I have no idea. All I know is that after he supposedly left his job everyday, he would come and pick me up at work. I had no idea the affair was going on. And then one day I did. And she was pregnant. And then my life was a Jerry Springer episode and then I was divorced. Best. Cliff Notes. Ever! Suck it, Charles Dickens!
He never apologized. I never found out when it started (before we got married? Maybe. No idea.) or if he really loved me for that matter. All I know is…he betrayed me. And I loved him MORE than anything. So much for that. Some best friend.
Let’s see. Had a nervous breakdown..la la la…started hanging out with a new friend. Daily. We hung out every day. Got high. Watched movies. Went bowling. Took my mind off everything. It was exactly what I needed. She actually baked me a birthday cake. No friend up to or since had ever done that for me. Only family members baked for me. It was awesome.
Then a couple of things happened. Mere days after my divorce was final, we decided to go out for St. Patrick’s Day. We went to an Irish bar in Faneuil Hall (NOT Purple Shamrock or Black Rose, thank you very much). I didn’t have much self-esteem left, but I was looking to find some male attention. And there was one boy that I couldn’t take my eyes off of. He looked like a former flame of mine, from before I got married. Broad shoulders, dark eyes and hair and big lips. Yes please!
I made it known to her that he was the one. I wanted to talk to him. We went over to his table to talk to him and his friends. And guess what?? You’ll never guess. Oh, you did! She ended up with him. She blatantly flirted with him, even though there were hundreds of people there, and she was already seeing somebody…and there she was flirting. Now, maybe I had a snowball’s chance in hell with this kid…but couldn’t she have let me try, even if I were unsuccessful? And how about not adding insult to injury (remember husband’s affair, betrayal, breakdown and recent divorce) and you thought this was a good idea? Seriously? I stormed off like a baby (flaky, remember?). And then the next day I found out she took him home and fucked him. Nice. Hey thanks. Remind me to never ask you how it was because it makes me sick.
That didn’t end our friendship though. But I’ll tell you what did. Due to the divorce, my ex was responsible for sending me spousal support. Even though we were married 8 months, he agreed to pay back a particular sum of money to me that I used for our wedding. Basically he didn’t want my lawyer to drag his Scarlett Lettered pregnant girlfriend into court for adultery. So..he said, “whatever you want.” Gee thanks. Actually it was more like “Whatever you want, except I want one of the beds, one of the DVD players, the pool balls, bowling balls, computer and an air condition.” Oh John, you suck. Asshole.
Oops, got off topic. Anyway, one day when I was talking to the secretary at my lawyer’s office she asked me if John and Amy got married. I said I had no idea. She then went on to tell me that Amy was sending in the check to pay HIS alimony to ME and her checks now had my former last name on them. Wow. Ok then. They got married. Nice way to find out. Next time keep that to yourself Ally McBeal. (YES I know she wasn’t the secretary. Fuck off.)
I kept this news to myself. I wasn’t quite ready to tell the world. I was embarrassed and I felt like I lost. I lost whatever game I was playing. I was done. Now meanwhile, my daily hang out friend, the one I was buying Dior perfume for come birthday time, started seeing a new dude. This new dude was someone who I knew for a fact KNEW my ex-husband’s new wife. My ex would talk about his boss all the time, you know, before I found out about the affair! I just thought she was a good mentor. So I knew so much about her. How lovely. Including who her family was and who her friends were. And my friend’s new flame was Amy’s friend. Some how. Kinda. Sort of. Not BFF. But maybe Prom dates? I dunno.
It weirded me out. Kind of like when my friend who was a legit massage therapist told me she gave a handicapped client a “happy ending” weirded me out. Didn’t sit well with me, but what was I going to do?? All I wanted was NOT to be talked about. Don’t talk about me or my situation with John/Amy with your new boytoy.
A few weeks after I got the news about the nuptials, my friend lets it slip that John and Amy got married. When I inquired how she knew, she said I told her. BUT I know for a fact I didn’t. So it doesn’t take Columbo to figure out how she knew…her new bf (who probably went to the fucking wedding and took her as a date for all I know!) told her. Which means that he knew that she and I were friends, and that I was the jilted ex-wife of John’s. Fucking Great.
And that was the end of that. Can’t trust you with shit. And I’m sorry, but this is a pretty heavy topic in my life (breakdown remember?) and my biggest pet peeve in life is people talking about ME behind my back. So what do you do? You talk about me behind my back about my horrible divorce from my cheating ex husband who is now married to the slut that your new boyfriend is friend’s with? Jesus H. Christmas. It’s not like you just made fun of my pants. Oh wait, she did that too.
And lastly, there was a recent let down. I’m not the greatest at making friends but there was this one woman I really liked. She was funny and nice. And then her husband cheated on her and she found out in some sort of text mishap. It just sucked. And I told her my story about what happened to me and John. I related. And when the day came for her divorce to be finalized I sent a card (that I painstakingly picked out at Hallmark the night before) and wrote her a heartfelt message and gave her my cell number in case she needed someone to talk to. She never called. Or texted. But it was okay. We emailed. We chatted. Laughed. It was nice. She told me that she went to high school with Amy. What a small world. When someone on FB suggested they friend one another, she declined. Because she was friends with me. Whew! Someone who was sticking by me. That was nice for a change. Thank you.
She actually saw Amy at a wake. And she emailed me to tell me that Amy looked, “tired old and fat.” Hurrah!! Not that I wanted or needed to hear that, I don’t really care if those two are the happiest miniature unicorn breeders on Planet Rainbow Brite. But I had recent lap-band surgery, was losing weight, and feeling better about myself. And wasn’t tired, old and fat. Yippee!
This friend was actually thinking of getting some sort of weight loss surgery herself but was apprehensive. I told her all about my ordeal (which I wasn’t telling a lot of people. Oh which reminds me that I did tell someone who promised me she wouldn’t tell anyone, and then HER friend asked me about it at a dinner party. Hmm. Untrustworthy anyone?) and actually lent her my Weight loss Surgery for Dummies book. Here, borrow this. Read it. Ask me anything. I’m here to help and support. Smiles!
Recently I noticed that she friggin’ friended Amy on Facebook. Are you fucking kidding me? You told me you wouldn’t do that. AND I post stuff on your wall, that she could see, and potentially stuff that John could see. And I don’t want him knowing fucking diddly squat about my life now. So fuck this shit. I unfriended her. Don’t want an explanation. My last wall post to her was “I don’t think I like the caliber of friends you keep on FB.” So she can have Amy. Fuck that. Did Amy write her a nice note after her divorce? No. Did Amy lend her books? No. Did Amy buy cosmetics from her when she decided to do a work-from-home career? NOPE. Amy did, however, fuck MY husband while he was married to me. And remember honey, your husband was fucking someone else too? Would you like me to friend her on Facebook?
Ready for the hypocritical irony? She had recently started having a relationship with a man…who was married and because of their new love affair was dumping his wife. So I guess when your morals are going down the toilet faster than cocaine in a drug bust, you think, Oh hell, why not friend Amy on Facebook? We have so much in common! Like!
So there you go. I KNOW some of this was harsh. And it’s weird to put it out there. But thanks to Borders I had to come to terms with YES, I STRONGLY AGREE with the statement, “Do you feel like it’s a waste of time to make new friends when you know they will just let you down?”
(This was supposed to be a terse post, but over 3,000 words later and one missed Bill Maher episode, I’m finally done. I just wanted to point out one thing: The word “nuptials.” I totally thought it was spelled how it sounds, “nuptuals.” But nope, I spell checked that shit and I was wrong. Nuptials. That just looks strange. Another word I think looks strange – Sole. Does that ever happen to you? You write or type a word and think, ‘That can’t be right.’ But then it is. But not in this case, because “nuptuals” was wrong. Okay I better wrap this up and go catch Bill on my DVR. I wonder what fun Christine O’Donnell clip he’ll show tonight. “I’m not a witch. I’m you.” Wait, you’re me? Huh? Oh Delaware. Good luck with that!!)