Thursday, December 10, 2009

On retiring poster boy

Hey, y’all, heads up: This is a long post. You’re not required to read it. (Yes, I’m talking to you Anonymous Cereal Hater. You’re not going to like this post. You are welcome to save yourself some time by not reading it. I can just comment for you: "Cereal sucks and she can’t write blah blah blah, Signed, ACH.")

I recently wrote here about the family of my ex, Poster Boy. All it amounts to is a little ditty about how I love and miss them, and they miss me, too. In comments, I was accused of having a heart. (And yes, maybe, Internet, I’ll admit that I do, in fact, have a heart — just don’t tell anyone, OK?)

I sent a link to a member of Poster Boy’s family, a woman who has become a friend. I think her reply was, “Awwwwwww.”

Days later, late on a Friday night, I noticed I’d missed a call from Poster Boy. I called him back pronto, since, although we’d remained friendly enough that I’d actually had him and his girlfriend to my house for a big, fan-fucking-tastic end-of-the-summer bash about a month prior, (after I extended the invite, he called me to thank me, then Miss Poster Boy emailed me, thanked me for the invite, and asked what she could bring. I thought we were all being Oh-So Mature until he got a little too drunk at the party, and, in a mock-friendly gesture, slapped me on the back hard enough to leave a welt) he didn’t usually call me at midnight. I was worried.

“Well, I actually wanted to talk to you about what you wrote about me and my family on the internet,” he said. I could tell he was drunk. I refused, on account of the drunkenness and told him we’d talk later.

But when I got home, I listened to the message. It was a condescending reprimand about how I needed to move on and stop writing about him on the Internet, (I guess writing my mother, or writing in my journal, or writing a zine would have been cool, but not the Internet) about how I’m a grown adult and I need to start acting like one. I think there was something in there about how the internet isn’t everything. (We know better than that, though, don’t we?) I texted him a message reading, basically: “Eat shit and die.”

He called me. Stupidly, I answered, and he ranted and talked down to me. When I reminded him that he was not allowed to talk like that to me, he actually responded, “I can talk to you any fucking way I want.” Naturally, I hung up on him.

But I was confused. He’d never before minded when I wrote about him on DIW. I think he liked the notoriety. He even commented on some posts — even after we broke up. He e-mailed me about one once and told me it had touched him. And there are choice Poster Boy stories — horrifying, jaw-dropping stories — that I’ve never written about on this site. Believe it or not, I do have boundaries.

I noticed the next day that a comment had been left on the post at about the same time we talked, an anonymous comment reading “get a fucking life and move on.”

I was done. I sent an email and told him that if he didn’t want me to write about him, he could’ve just ASKED. I wouldn’t even need a “please.” But I’d taken my last drunken phone call—something I should have done years earlier. I told him to lose my number.

Then a twist came. Poster Boy replied to my e-mail. He apologized. Twice. He told me he knew he shouldn’t have spoken to me like that and shouldn’t have called drunk. Then he closed by saying that he hadn’t commented on the post, hadn’t even read it, and: “Just so you know it makes things awkward for me that my family and you still are in contact with each other.”

Clarity. It was young Miss Poster Boy who’d read the post, gotten pissed, left the shitty comment. In all likelihood, it was she he was showing off for when he called and insulted me. Of course.

And it’s no wonder. Not everyone understands this about blogging and dating: When you’re in a relationship, a really good one, sometimes the new relationship doesn’t make it on your dating blog. I guess some people don’t like being written about on shit-talky dating blogs. That’s actually OK with me because the funny thing that happened yesterday with the sensitive, sexy man I’m now running around with? It feels precious and private.

However, the love I feel for people who were a second family to me for half of a decade? That feels like something other people might identify with. Lots of emotionally mature folks get that sort of thing.

And Miss Poster Boy? Poor thing. I sort of feel bad that she’s so insecure. That she doesn’t get, and clearly doesn’t have, that type of connection, forged over time. I really wish her luck with Poster Boy. And I know she’s going to need it.

But, here’s the thing: She won. Poster Boy and I are done. We don’t talk. I think that’s what she really wanted. Thanks to her hissy fit, I’ve decided it’s time to retire Poster Boy.


a good egg said...

What a bitch (the new gf.) Maybe she will read this and know some random stranger thinks less of her. But it doesn't mean anything, right? This is the internet.

Sexy Sadie said...

Well, I wish I could read more stories about how douchey this guy is, but it sounds like a healthy move in the right direction. Probably best to cut out the cancer completely instead of leaving a lil bit to fester for the benefit of us lowly interwebbers. Fuck that guy, fuck his silly girlfriend, and if the family stays in touch with you, then chalk it up as one positive leftover of what sounds like a toxic relationship. If it makes him uncomfortable, so be it. He needs to grow a pair.

itinerantwoman said...

y'know, SM, we've met, you and i; and once i even met po'boy, and i felt something i rarely feel: confusion.

what was the appeal? he's not memorably bright; certainly not a major looker. he was mildly personable, but i don't get it. did he have a prehensile tongue, a rapier wit or a dong worthy of hosannahs? because, if not, i just don't get how you hooked up with him for a long weekend, never mind half a decade.

you must be kinder, more forgiving and less discriminating than you let on; but it's good you're divesting yourself of this sot once and for all. leave the drunkards and ingrates for the little drunkards and girly ingrates. stick with your own kind, SM: smartypants cutiepies.

Shiny Rod said...

Why SM, you do have a heart! Nothing wrong with keeping a family friendship even though the ex is and asshole.

I still keep in touch with my ex-MIL through FB but it is more of cordial existence than a conversational friendship. My way of jabbing at the ex in her back. The one that got away syndrome.

Serial Monogamist said...

SS: Send me an email, maybe I'll send you a private tale or two. Granted, I look like an ass in a lot of them, too. But my temperament has been so tame in the last year and a half, I'm starting to suspect that I was correct all those years. It really him making me crazy.

And IW: I will take that as a mandate. 100% Smartypants cutiepie diet for me from now on.

Jess said...

Not that unusual for a looker to hook up and hang on to dimwitted drunkard or drugee. At least she didn't marry him....

Serial Monogamist said...

Jess: True dat. But I still sort of feel like I went through a divorce ...