When The Dude and I split up, I knew he’d go for some rebound humping. Of course he would. That’s what they do. My request, though, was that he not do it at our shared apartment until I’d moved out. Just don’t bring the Skanks to my house while there are still photos of my nieces and nephews on the walls. I’m sure the Skanks would also appreciate not having to look at my sweat-stained bra straps spilling out of my underwear drawer. Plus, my mother gave me those sheets.
He agreed. Or so I thought.
So. Even though The Dude was out of town, I was sort of couch-surfing. I had planned to stick it out in the apartment until my new place was ready, but I had decided that in addition to my mostly amicable split from The Dude, I also needed to break up with Roommate Guy. I think the moment I decided that was when, on a Sunday morning, I discovered that Roommate Guy had gone halfway to emptying the trash. A for effort, buddy. But no. Not really. You don’t leave a putrid bag of refuse on the kitchen floor when it’s 90 degrees out and you have no AC. Follow-through is key in things like taking out the garbage.
On second thought, maybe it wasn’t that exact moment that I decided to break up with Roommate Guy. Maybe it was when, upon returning from taking his trash out to the dumpster, I went into the bathroom and nearly stepped on a turquoise blue Trojan wrapper. I guess he wanted me to know he was being safe.
Weeks later, I stopped by the bachelor pad to pick up some things. It seemed impossible to avoid the place completely while I was living La Vida Couch Surf. I wandered through the empty apartment with a grocery bag, stuffing in my black shirtdress, my hair straightening serum, plus a can of Pam and a handful of Q-tips. I walked into the bedroom, the bedroom on which I was paid up for the rest of the month, the bedroom in which photos of my family hang on the wall, and one thing jumped out at me right away. A condom wrapper. Or really, in fairness, just part of one—the hastily torn off strip of silver. It lay just under the ledge of The Dude’s nightstand. Of course I picked it up. Silver Durex. Glinting with lube.
After I regained consciousness and got my breathing back to near-normal, I called The Dude to ask him about it.
“Well it’s not fucking mine.”
“Really? Because it’s not fucking mine.”
“I swear. It’s not mine.”
“Wow. You must think I’m stupid.”
“What? No, I don’t know, maybe I’ll ask Roommate.”
“Roommate? Who has his own bedroom? Roommate who has a Costco-sized box of Trojan condoms in his bedroom?”
“What, you think I’m lying?”
The Dude didn’t talk to me for quite awhile after that. Here's my question: Why wouldn’t I think he was lying? Of course he was, right?
Was my request unreasonable? Or maybe, maybe the Skanks liked the illicit nature of it all, walking up the stairs of our apartment looking at pictures of me and The Dude with our arms wrapped around each other, maybe the Skanks look at the pictures and thought, falsely, that they were cuter than me, and maybe they got some sort of satisfaction out of their bullshit skanky delusion.
Maybe he just wanted me to know he was being safe?