Hello I Must Be Going

Everybody wants a superpower, but nobody wants to pay those dry-cleaning bills.

Personally, I think most of them are overrated. Can you imagine the shit you’re going to be subjected to if your co-workers found out you have the ability to leap tall buildings in a single bound and you didn’t pick them up on the way to work?

So forget time traveling or possessing superhuman speed. Don’t give me telepathy, flight, shape shifting or even having Catwoman’s number on speed dial. Because while those superpowers are nice, they ain’t got a thing on mine.

I rarely run into an ex.

That’s it. That’s my superpower. And while it ain’t ever gonna put Iron Man out of business, it works for yours truly. And it’s my great good fortune to have it, seeing as how I’ve got plenty of Rico but precious little Suave for these situations.

Running into Ex

This isn’t to say I haven’t experienced an awkward conversation in line at the grocery store. But more often than not, I’ve been able to avoid the calamitous “Oh heeeeyyyy!” . . which is the single dude preamble to that John Milton novel. Okay, all of ’em.

I found myself behind Red in a Starbucks drive through last week. There she was in her adorable little Fiat, fussing with her fiery red curls as I leaned down to search for something in my glove box in order to escape detection. Red was married, which is why we lasted as long as we did.

Rosemarie was my disco lemonade crush back in the ’80’s, and I really thought I was going to marry her someday, maybe. This was mostly due to the fact a Survivor love ballad always seemed to make the scene when we were skin deep in negotiations. I actually came across her a couple times over the last few years before I was certain it was her, seeing as how she chopped her mane and lost her infectious smile thanks to parenthood. And it’s even money she was thinking the same thing about me.

Ms. Borinquen gifted me an Ireland soccer t-shirt on St Patrick’s Day 2007 after we decided to double down on the merry making at her crib. I spotted her in a downtown cafe a few years back, looking as creamy as ever. After which I switched seats with my coffee pal, just in case the dude she was with happened to be her gun toting baby daddy.

I’m expert at spotting an ex before the ex spots me. As with Mel the poet at Hershey Park . . . Val the therapist at the mall . . . Diana the parole officer in a Jimmy John’s (after which I got Chinese takeout instead) . . . Lisa the perpetual saint of unemployment at a bar . . .

Awkard Ex Conversation

Which brings me to Miss What’s Her Name. She was a teacher who had worked with Red for a while, and we once ran into her at a pub near Red’s condo in town. She was several drinks south of the meridian line by that point in the evening, but she still remembered the chance acquaintance when speaking to Red a few days later. And it was somewhere inside their conversation that Miss What’s Her Name made a rather tawdry suggestion that maybe the three of us could, yanno, have a round table. Sans the table.

Discretion was the better part of Red’s game, so it never happened. And thank God for that, because this woman would end up in a 50 Shades-like scandal a few years later. Seems she had been playing bare naked Hades with several prominent names when a scorned spouse cried foul.

So of fucking course I ran into her. And it was the strangest thing, to run into someone I didn’t sleep with only because the woman I was sleeping with had more sense in her pinkie than I have in . . . umm, mine. Because you know what’s more awkward than running into someone you went Hello Dali with behind closed doors? Running into someone who suggested such an encounter to your married girlfriend.

She asked if I still talk to Red and I told her I didn’t. And then I asked her something to which I have no recollection, because I just wanted to extricate myself from the situation as quickly as possible. And I know she was thinking the same thing, because she was fidgeting like a pitcher with the bases loaded. Thing is, for someone who is locked and loaded when it comes time to find trouble, my arsenal is weaker than the french army when attempting to flee the scene.

Catwoman would have a field day with me.

71 thoughts on “Hello I Must Be Going

    • Eilene,

      I was leery about writing this one, for fear it would come back to bite me with daily occurrences of “oh heeyy”. But it was the art calling me, so Imma suffer the consequences if necessary. πŸ˜‰

      Liked by 1 person

      • Right! It crossed my mind to move more than once. Imagine this scenrio, we had to man the food stand at a ballgame once and the fates thought it would be funny to schedule us for the same date and time. He figured since our sons were friends we must be cool. So he came and sat down on the counter next to me. Umm, excuse me, NO!

        Seriously, if you have some extra superpower you can share…I could use it!

        Liked by 1 person

  1. B,

    You kill me. The best part of things that make you tick or tick you off is we get to read about them. As you know, I am weird enough to be on friendly terms with some of my exes.

    And I never run into any of the others. You would think – but no. In a not so awkward moment, I ran into my very first boyfriend at a mall. Boy was he FAT! I barely recognized him. Course we had dated like a hundred years ago…

    Then again, my love life, while pretty much never had a dry spell till the last five years, was not on the level of exciting as yours was. So there’s that. Running into any of them would be a ‘Hey, what’s shakin’? You good? Cool. Have a great day.’ and off I’d go…

    Ever had such a short comment from me? Oh and perfect use of the late Ric Ocasek – you would find the perfect song πŸ˜‰


    Liked by 1 person

    • Q,

      You’re the anomaly, and that’s because you’ve got gobs of charm running in sync with all that lovely.

      That was a good meeting though! If an ex is A) much older looking, B)heavier, C)looks defeated . . . that’s a win. Sorry, but it is!

      I don’t know about exciting. I’m sure the ex’s would have a thing or several to say about that, LOL. I would hope it was, at least, a ride and a memorable one. Without qualifying it beyond that.

      Did you have a word count challenge going with your comment? πŸ˜‰


      Liked by 1 person

      • I may be. ‘Tis true that none of them ended in vitriolic hate, which helps. They were usually just he or me saying – yeah, that’s it. Mighta been a tear or two spilled – especially with the first – coz we did break up like four times – but mostly. meh. Maybe my charm on the outside holds a cold heart on the inside.

        Absolutely! You can’t help but think. Phew! I escaped that one! LOL And damn if I am not doing great! (Oh, we bad…)

        There is that. You’ve got me thinking, trying to remember if any were of particular good-memory inducing stuff. I’m sure there were some. Maybe

        I know right? I feel I’ve made up for some with this one! πŸ˜‰

        Liked by 1 person

        • I doubt the cold heart. It’s more about moving along down the road when you know that holding on wasn’t going to work in those cases. Smart. To go along with sassy.

          Most peeps don’t admit it, even if they think it. I mean, I wish ’em well, but I ain’t crying if they possess any of the above.

          I ran into Diana’s mother once in a grocery store. THAT was awkward, especially since she was nice to me. She always thought the two of us would be together.

          Is it a market correction? πŸ˜‰


          • Hmm. Maybe re the cold heart. But yeah, I am not a dweller. And I sure as shit ain’t the try to hold on if they want to leave type, either. I’ll take sassy!

            They won’t admit it out loud, maybe. And exactly. How can we not do a little dance on the inside πŸ˜‰

            Funny. I did run into Yves’ (first BF) parents at a Pizza Hut once. Had a great chat, filled me in on him and his sisters. No awkwardness at all. Must be me who’s weird.

            Ummm. I canna say. πŸ˜‰

            Liked by 2 people

          • No, the holding on doesn’t make any sense.

            Of COURSE the sassy.

            I mean, it’s not as if we’re wishing this on them. But if it happens that way, hey . . who are we to argue with it?

            Oh you’re weird alright, which is why we relate so well. Simpaticus and all that jazz, it’s a thing.

            LOL. You’re a punk too.

            Liked by 1 person

          • I never could get that.


            Right! We had no idea they would go down that route post-us… πŸ˜‰

            He he he… I’ll take weird if it means I can still hang out with the likes of you.

            I think punk has become a form of endearment from you, so I’ll take that as well.

            And with all this exchange back and forth, I forgot to say I have to admit, methinks I’d feel damn awkward to run into the one who suggested a certain get-together…

            Liked by 1 person

          • I was never a holder onner. I heard a line this morning I dig, about how this player would rather choke on greatness than nibble on mediocrity. To re-purpose that line, I’d rather go down in a passionate flame then exist in meh. Hence, the holding on ain’t make sense to me.

            I wish every single ex well. From wherever they may be. Just so long as they stay wherever they may be, LOL.

            Hang with me and things will always be weird. And something tells me, the weird factor will only grow.

            Yes, punk is my endearing term. Howdja know?

            The only thing that would have been more awkward would have been running into her if we had gone there. Of course, for more reasons than the one, seeing as how Red was and is a fairly prominent name and welp, things might have gone sideways a lot earlier with us if that lid had been popped.

            Liked by 1 person

          • Neither was/am I. Why in the name of hell would you want to hold on to someone who no longer wants you? That is a great line – plus your re-purposing of it. Absolutely agree with you.

            As do I. Even if I am not so worried about meeting any of ’em in the middle of nowhere (and I wonder how many I would recognize and even know their name. Ahem.)

            I’m jiggy with your weird.

            I just do. Makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside πŸ˜‰

            OH hells yes. That would have been Capital-A Awkward. You do like to aim high, don’t ya?

            Liked by 1 person

          • I was never a runner, nor a holder onner. I wasn’t the happy medium though, either. Anyways, moving on . . . LOL

            I’ve had a few instances where I wasn’t sure if I was seeing who I was thinking. And it’s very problematic, because then I’m curious just to see if it is that person, and that’s risky.

            Jiggy is good.

            Punk. πŸ˜‰

            I didn’t realize just how prominent until I was already involved. At which point it was cool, mostly. Red was odd, in that she was very careful with certain things and then with other things, she had no discretion whatsoever. And if there’s one thing I hate, it’s having to be the adult.

            Liked by 1 person

          • Risky business, but it’s a writer’s curiosity that MAKES me look . . if only for fodder.


            Oh, you bettah.

            It’s just so confining. And I gots to be an adult so dang much already.

            Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m sorry that happened though you did get an essay out of it…like leaving the dinner with the centerpiece. My ex lives a block away. I see him and his latest live-in frequently. We are very polite though I’d still like to smack-em. Ho Ho, to quote Hunter Thompson I still miss very much.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Guess I’ve been lucky in that I can’t think of many encounters with formers. Maybe my ex-radar is on hyper duty. My feeling is if they wanted to get away from me, there’s absolutely no point in chit-chatting like we’re still something. I’d rather leave subconscious skid marks. Nice salute to Ric Ocasek who will definitely be missed.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Dude. That is one of THE BEST superpowers ever. Like ever. I know some people are let’s be friends it’s in the past but I’m more of a peace out! person πŸ™‚ But to be fair most were nice however there’s the one … or two duuuuude since our city is so big (and one is in a completely different city) haven’t run into any in about 25 years. It’s the best gift ever πŸ™‚ WonderTwins activate!

    Liked by 1 person

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