Friday, May 05, 2006

Ancient History; or, In Which We Meet Cleopatra

As we join our brave heroine (heroin?!? Have you ever noticed that the word “heroin” is in the word “heroine”? More on that later. No reading ahead.)she is wondering why her boyfriend suddenly lost his freaking mind around Thanksgiving and had essentially abandoned her at the height (the very HEIGHT, I tell you) of the festive season. Well, said boyfriend did manage to make it to the Christmas day festivities at her brother's house. And collect several rather expensive and well-thought-out giftages that various members of our heroine's family had purchased just for him, because her family loves her and wants her to be happy. (Gift bribery, I tell you!) There were several other phone calls during the week between Christmas and New Year's. The villain of our piece told the heroine (now known as Cleopatra, baby) that he had to babysit his grandkids on New Year's Eve. (Shut up. Yes, I'm aware that maybe, just maybe, a man with GRANDKIDS might be too old for me. No, don't say it. Shhh.) And, our sweet, misguided, totally deluded heroine, Cleopatra, believed him and even offered to "help out". He declined her offer because "his daughter was not comfortable with that idea". (Shut up. No, really.) So, Cleo headed out on the town with her bestest friend Beth and her husband, and Dawn (who was having issues with her spouse) and went to the Bad Karaoke Bar downtown for an evening of Southern Rock played by a band that had mastered (!) a whopping 30% of their 20 song playlist. (We know this because 1.} We sat right in front of the amplifier and 2.} Every time someone made a request they were handed a ratty sheet of legal paper with the aforementioned 20 songs and told - "These are the only songs we know how to play." They did NOT mention that "know how to play" included "putting the CD into the stereo in the Ford Econoline van with the rebel flag airbrushed on it". But, I digress.) So, our heroine made the best of a sad situation, being danceless and kissless during the evening and did her best to ring in the New Year with a festive air.

Cleo made her way home without mishap and awoke the next morning, filled with the fresh hope of a New Year, called the boyfriend to extend wishes for a most happy and prosperous New Year. (We use the term "morning" loosely, since it was around lunchtime.) She got the boyfriend's voicemail so she left her New Year's wishes on the machine and went about her day. Her phone rang a couple of hours later and her heart leapt (LEAPT!) with joy, for it was he. (Him? Grammar police, where ARE you??) She answered the phone, dripping with Southern sweetness and holiday cheer. (Patient Reader, this part is known as the defining moment of our little tale.)

When Cleo answered the phone, boyfriend YELLED at her. The conversation is as follows:
Cleo: Hello?
Boyfriend: It's OVER.
Cleo: What?
Boyfriend: It's OVER.
Cleo: Wh..what? (shaky voice)
Boyfriend: Stop calling me. I don't want you in my life. Don't call me, don't contact me at all.
Cleo: - - - -
White Trash Voice in the Background: Tell her why.
Boyfriend: I'm back with Mary (previous girlfriend, who probably rates a story of her own)
Cleo: Ok - - -
Cleo: click of the phone being hung up by her in shock

So, our brave little (shut up. she is.) heroine managed to keep it together long enough to call Dawn, all the while wondering if she was going to die before she could draw a breath because oddly enough, her breathing apparatus seemed to have malfunctioned and she could not seem to remember how to exchange carbon dioxide for new oxygen. She spent the rest of the day at Dawn’s trying to reconstruct what could have happened to her wonderful relationship that was destined (DESTINED!) for happiness. To this day, we still do not have a good answer to that question.

However, after months of silence, boyfriend spoke to Dawn (about another issue because Dawn, being the good friend she is, was busily HATING (!) boyfriend by proxy and engaged in much amusing name-calling and reputation-smearing along with Cleo) and said that Cleo was "tying him down". Cleo and Dawn were confused by this statement, because although Cleo had visions of happiness and bliss, she had never once said the "M" word (marriage) and was always very easy-going about plans and such. She strived to be laid back and non-clingy. It should be noted for the record that boyfriend was the one that had actively pursued Cleo and called her several times a day and wanted to come over 8 days a week and bought her gifts (including several sets of matching (MATCHING!) t-shirts that they would wear at the same time, because, aw! how cute). Anyway. Boyfriend then had the nerve to tell Dawn that he "wanted to be Cleo's friend" but Dawn, being the good, good friend that she is, told boyfriend, "Leave her alone. She's going out with a really nice guy." (Which she is – she may have finally found the prince in the frog pond.)

When this information was relayed to Cleo, she used the immortal words of Kid Rock.
"I had plenty of friends 'fore I met you; I don't need no more."

The other thing, mentioned waaaaay up at the top of this entry when I saw "heroin" in "heroine" is....for some reason (Organic brain disease??) over the past few weeks, I've been seeing other words inside the words I'm looking at. The easiest time I have of doing this is in web addresses. For instance, in - we see the words dri veins. This has happened with alarming regularity recently. It's amusing, but I have to re-read things sometimes because my brain does not register what I'm reading correctly. This is in addition to a dismaying propensity for adding extra letters and/or syllables to words. I managed to confuse the fire out of our office manager one morning when I asked her to pull up a report for me. I had to stop and walk away and start over a minute later. I also cannot say the term "flat panel" (as in flat panel tv) without saying "flat planel". Curious!