Old BF has taken to challenging me to word games. He used to do this when we were together. My favorite game was Quiddler, which is like Scrabble in card form, with lovely Book of Kells art on the faces. Funny thing is that I've never played Scrabble, but I get the idea.
So, how did that game go for him? Well, let's take a look at that. I've been a newspaper editor, writer, curriculum editor, and researcher. I love language. On the other hand, he reads dictionaries for fun. Seems like a good match-up for word games.
Isn't. But seems like.
Poor man never won a word game with me.
So, five years after we finally broke up, what happens? A little app called "Words With Friends." I hadn't heard of it before he challenged me. I was surprised to have a message from him, but I checked our the game anyhow. I decided to accept the challenge. And I've been wiping the floor with his ass ever since.
"You're beating him by 300 points, " Daughter said. "I'd say you were being mean, but it's him." And he keeps asking for it.
So, why is he doing this? I have no answer. I just don't get it.
The calls for Ranger have slowed. That's quite nice. I'm almost to the end of the contract for that phone, so I can get rid of it soon without paying to get rid of it. That will be nice. For a long while, old memories would hit me and I'd see them in the light of the things I know now. The feeling of foolishness would consume me for a bit, but I'd come to grips with it.
The words I wanted to say to him would sometimes play through my mind, and then I'd resolve them. Initially, I'd feel frustrated that I'd not have the chance to say them, then I'd feel better to realize that they'd go unsaid because I'd never seen him again. And I do like that thought, of never having to look at his deceitful face again.
I got one of those calls for him yesterday. They didn't want the numbers, but promised to remove mine from their calling cycle. Soon, it was lunchtime. It was hot outside, so I decided to eat at my desk.
In awhile, I thought I heard my coworker returning. Footsteps came to my door and stopped. I waited for her to come in.
But she didn't step in.
"Hi!" he said, like we were best of buddies who chatted daily.
"Hello." I said. All those things I wanted to say? Frozen. Seized up in a rush of very unpleasant surprise.
He was holding two books. A cookbook I'd once given him and a small red book. I recognized it as another I'd given him. It's one of those fill-in-the-blank books that you write all manner of sweet, loving, intimate things to your lover. They do the same for you, then you trade. I have the copy he gave me, trying to decide on an appropriate way of destroying it. Now, I laid eyes on the one I'd given him.
As he stepped in, I could smell the stink of the heat outside on him. Ugh.
"I'm having to move," he said. "A lot of stuff has to go into storage, so I'm sorting through it. I came across these."
He held out the cookbook, but I didn't move. "You gave me a copy of this a couple of years ago, but my kids gave me one for Christmas. I figured you'd like the extra copy, since I know you liked it."
Again, I didn't move.
He held out the little red book. "And I found this. I didn't want to throw it out, but I also didn't want anyone to just come across it in storage. So, I thought I'd give it to you, to do with what you want."
"Okay," is all I said.
He set the books on my desk. "Well, there you go. How are you doing?"
"Just fine." I said.
And he left.
I sat there staring at my computer screen for awhile. I hadn't realized how much comfort I'd actually taken from the thought of never seeing him again. The sight of him made me feel stupid all over again. To look into the face I'd believed for so long, so foolishly...well, it's not a good feeling at all.
I looked at the books on my desk. The little red one had some greeting cards stuck in it. That's when I had that terrible moment when you realize what you should have done. The scene would have been much better if it had played out this way.
"....I didn't want to throw it out, but I also didn't want anyone to just come across it in storage. So, I thought I'd give it to you, to do with what you want."
He'd hold the book out to me. I'd take it from his hand...and toss it into my trash can.
That's how it should have played out. Shit. I hate missed opportunities to be clever.
Over the next few hours, I thought a bit about what he said. Moving. Things going to storage. How could he possibly move someplace smaller, with less room for his stuff? He was living in a minuscule trailer. And how would someone come across my book, in his storage? He has to be concerned with someone else accessing his stuff without him. Most likely, yet another woman he's lied to about me. The possibility exists that he's finally being sent to jail on the child support issue.
It's wrong, but that thought kind of makes me feel better.
Again, though, I don't get it. Why do they come back? I didn't need those books. He could have just thrown out the red book and not come to see me. He could have done something else with the cookbook, too. Why see me? I don't get it.
In any case, now I have both red books. I think our little family needs to use the backyard fire pit to make s'mores again.
I have just the kindling.