It was at once the worst, and yet almost the greatest, then one of the fucking weirdest things I have ever been a part of...
One would have thought after the complete cluster-fuck episode of the Just Kidding Affair of the Winter of 1998-1999 I would have learned my lesson. One would have thought that I would never allow myself to get serious with somebody again before really getting to know them; most especially to see if there was anything more going on behind the scenes than what I was allowed to glimpse. And in a way I did learn... Well, at least I did before it was too late, and I was able to get the "upper hand," as George Costanza would say, before the final few seconds of regulation game time. If this paragraph doesn't make any sense to you, it's not supposed to... Yet. Come back and reread it after you've completed the rest of my story about how I almost turned what could have been the most horrible thing to ever occur to my lonesome self into what could have been the greatest accomplishment of my miserable little life, before chickening out and just running for the hills.
Now, I know that the beginning portion of this tale might not seem to be going anywhere sinister at first, but trust me, all this buildup is very necessary for the climactic finale.
It all began in early October 2010. After hitting a dry spell with the dating scene in my small town, I finally caved in and threw my hat into the Match.com "lost souls" love/sex-connection ring. Again. Things were pretty shitty on that site too, but just before giving up for good I came upon the profile of a gorgeous redhead, and as I read through it I found that I was entranced by her intriguing listing.
This woman (who I'll call Lisa) was tall (5'11"), sassy, very pretty, down to Earth, and LOVED college football (an Auburn Tiger all the way). She was a single mom, but I personally have no issue with that. The child baggage seemed to be the only thing that could have been a red flag on her bio, so I sent her an email. She responded back within a day, and soon we were writing back and forth like two goofy teens texting their hearts out. Figuring we were hitting it off well enough, I proposed we meet face to face for a nice dinner date, and she agreed.
We met for the first time on Thursday, October 14th (she told me her weekends were mommy and daughter time, and I had no problem with a mid-week rendezvous), at an expensive Mexican restaurant at the new mall in town. When Lisa showed up (a little late due to her job as a youth counselor [for drug-addicted and sexually deviant teenagers] having an emergency with a kid claiming suicidal thoughts) the picture of her walking towards my table took my breath away; she was even more beautiful than her profile picture hinted. She was a little flustered about her day's work though, and so we just sat and talked for a long time before even ordering our meals while she decompressed.
The duties of her position sounded absolutely horrific. She was tough enough to handle those fucked up punks though (both mentally and physically, as she was really over 6-feet tall in shoes), but some of the stories she told me (about kids trying to fuck each other during her group sessions, her not being able to wear heals to work anymore because one kid has a terrible foot fetish and got physically aroused when she did, and a kid in withdrawal who snapped and tried to hit everybody else with his plastic chair for some reason when another kid brought up "dildos") had me both laughing and cringing. I even had her laughing with some of my tales of Rossman daring do over the past few years. She was unflappable, loved all the same movies I did, wanted a few more kids, and all in all seemed just as interested in me as I was in her. Lots of hand-holding and eye-gazing took place after our dinner while we just kept the conversation rolling.
We sat and talked for 4 hours and 50 minutes that night, and as I told Chi-Chi the next day, I thought I had actually found The One. I was smitten. I had never been that taken by a first meeting with a woman before (as my ginormous list of One Date Wonders will attest [well over fifty... Yeah, not really bragging]).
To make a long story short, over the next few weeks we talked for hours at a time, had some more fantastic dates, and got to know each other much better, but then her duties at her new job (that she had started the Monday after our first date) started to cause her tons of stress, and her free time was drying up like an alky hobo in Prohibition-era America. Her new job had doubled her responsibilities, and even made her responsible for things that she had literally no control over (like the transport vans belonging to the psychiatric center, which weren't due back at the garage until 7 o'clock every night, and were allowed to leave at 6AM every morning, so that she never even had the chance to spot check them for damage, or to see that maintenance was doing its job on them). She was sounding so frantic over the phone that just before Thanksgiving I sent a big bouquet of bright flowers to her office with a little note that said "Smile! :)"
Lisa loved the flowers, but her hours were still kicking her ass, and despite a few texts back and forth, our lines of communication really fell apart. She then told me that maybe we should take a break until she either got a new job or was able to hire somebody else to cover some of the multiplying new tasks that she was finding herself responsible for all the time. My heart was breaking, not only for not being able to
bone see her for a while, but mostly because she wasn't able to simply be with her daughter as much as she wanted to. Oh, she also informed me at this point that her young daughter was now officially allergic to eggs, peanuts, and dairy, and had terrible asthma, apparently because life wasn't bad enough for the two of them.
I came about THIS close to just calling it quits and letting her deal with all the stress and depression that she didn't seem to be willing to do anything about herself (at this point all she was doing was bitching about work on the rare times we did talk, with no plans on changing her situation at all), but then I remembered what had happened with her ex-husband. That total hillbilly douchebag started boning a short Asian girl he met at the gym, and just left Lisa with their child because the Asian girl "had herself a sixpack belly! Hoo-wee that's hot!" At least that's how Lisa told the story (and Lisa's got a kickin' body herself... Made me really want to see just what this Asian girl looked like!). I didn't want her to be abandoned again, and I thought that just by letting her bitch about her job to somebody (she has no real family at all) that I was doing something good... But soon even the calls and texting stopped all together through no fault of my own.
Shit gets worse, then better, then worse still...
By New Year's I was pretty depressed, but then came one last chance to keep things going with my Lisa: the Auburn Tigers played in the BCS title bowl, and after a terrific shoot-out they finally beat the Oregon Ducks! I used this opportunity to look up Lisa's Facebook page and send her a note via the site's messaging system (we weren't Facebook buddies yet as I really detest the site on a deeply personal level). I said, "That was a fantastic game! Congrats to you and your Tigers! I'm glad they kicked the shit out of those gay ducks." She responded in less than a day, and then we talked for another two hours that night (just like our conversations in the past). I felt I was doing her some good, and she made me feel happy just hearing her voice. Once again I would have sworn that she was indeed The One.
After a couple of weeks (with still no face to face date though), her condition started to take a turn for the worse. She started feeling ill all the time and at one point told me she had a migraine for a couple of days straight. I convinced her to see a doctor and he told her that all her work stress was causing her to have a "muscle headache," or somesuch thing. The idea was that all the muscles in her body were so tense and tightly bound that it was causing pressure in her head. He gave her some muscle relaxants, but they did nothing. Things then got so bad that her nose started bleeding. She then went to a day spa and had them massage her for something like 3-hours straight (nothing kinky... I hope), but that only helped a little. On top of all this, she'd had to admit her daughter to the hospital a few times since the new year had begun for some asthma and allergy symptoms. Her life sounded just like an unnatural Hell on Earth, complete with her own poltergeists and demons haunting her and her child.
We kept talking over the course of the next week (me mostly listening and telling her that it wasn't as bad as it seemed, and watching stuff like The Cake Boss together over the phone, like sad couples separated by a business trip... And hell, at least it wasn't Ghey's Anatomy), but then that one Thursday came and the threat level at her job jumped up from Terror-Level 2 (Red) to Terror-Level Alpha (Plaid), what with her supervisor inviting the person who previously held Lisa's position in, and together the two of them brought my girl into the head man's office, closed the door, and proceeded to mind rape the shit out of her. The person who previously had Lisa's job "had some ideas that she could use to actually, you know, get things done better, faster, and more efficient. Like...." and then she went on to list out about a dozen things that Lisa herself had already implemented (to much success) since her new jobly duties had started.
Lisa said her hands actually formed involuntary fists as she sat there, and she began to glare at them both. The supervisor and the "special guest" stopped smiling and asked my babe if she was alright. Lisa swallowed and managed to get out (without screaming) "Do you NOT even LOOK at the reports I turn in to you... Sir?" The supervisor said he didn't understand. Lisa then continued, "Everything... EVERYTHING that you guys have just read to me is stuff that I've already done. It's stuff that I did in my first two weeks, which is why this place is functioning at least 50% better than when SHE (points to special guest) was in my position... Honest to GOD... I... Unbelievable."
They tried to apologize to her for the "mixup," but Lisa said she had to go into her office and lock her door in order to just finish the day off without killing anybody. You would not believe the hole I felt in my chest when I heard her describe the shit she had to go through. I offered to take her out that Friday (even if she didn't think she had time — I figured she needed some adult face-to-face time to help show her that people did indeed care about her), but she told me that she was going to run away to her only living (and liked) relative's farm for the weekend, away from all cell phone towers and emails. She needed to get away. I didn't blame her one bit.
Now here's where everything topples like a giant game of Shit-Jenga...
That lonely Friday night, I started tooling around Facebook and figured "Hey! I'll 'Facebook friend' Lisa. It's something little, but sometimes it's the little things that make people smile most." And so I looked up her account again, and this time noticed that her entire profile was open to the general public. "That's not safe," I thought, as I dived right in.
I then scrolled down to mid-October 2010 to see if she wrote anything about me and our first terrific date. Right there, on the 19th of October (just five days after our first date, and after about three 2-hour long phone calls between us) she had changed her profile pick and her status from "single" to "in a relationship."
"Awwww," I thought, "That's pretty quick for Lisa to say something like that, but I guess my poor little angel just wants to be loved, but life just keeps kicking her in the twat. That's so sweet. I guess I should change my status to the same."
Then I looked up her photos. She was smiling in all of them like she didn't have a care in the world. "God she's gorgeous," I found myself thinking. I just wanted to see and hug her and... other stuff again.... Then I noticed the captions under her main profile picture:
- S****** Be***** Ga*****: BEAUTIFUL!!!=)
October 26, 2010 at 4:54am
- Lisa K****: Thank you doll!!! How are you??? Wish you were closer! Check out my wonderful boyfriend...Will H****
October 26, 2010 at 1:37pm
My mouth went dry and my jaw dropped open. I read that wrong. I had to have misread it.... Nope, the date was less than two weeks after our first date, and I knew for a fact my name was not Will H****. What. The. God. Damn. FUCK.
Then I went back to her main page and looked up the post she made about being in a relationship.... Then noticed she had just added this Will guy as a friend two days later. Then it all came together — the reasons we rarely met on the weekends, the stories about a shitty job that stole all of her time, the long break in December when we didn't talk... She was fucking another man! Wait, I thought, if Lisa was willing to post that she was "in a relationship" with somebody it must be serious! In the time I took to get to know her I realized she wouldn't even joke about something like that unless she had known that person for a long time... Which means that she had been seeing Will H**** for months by the time she met me, and that I was the other man! Holy shit!
My emotions ran from anger, to sadness, to confusion, to feeling completely betrayed, to wanting to punch The Hulk in his green junk, and then back again, all through the next day. I was at a loss as to what to do... Then I thought about her current weekend plans "away from all electronic communication." Holy shit! She wasn't at her grandfather's farm! She was bopping this Will guy! Or she was fucking this Will guy AT her grandfather's farm! Then I just got PISSED.
As I sat there with my insides spilling onto the floor, I found I had trouble thinking... Was this all a mistake? Was this Will guy just a friend, and was Lisa simply joking with her other friend S****** about it since they both knew the truth? Was she really two-timing Will and I both? That possibility just seemed so foreign! The number one thing she said that she liked about me after our first date was that with her years of psychological studies she could tell that I had been terribly betrayed by a woman in the past (*Cough* Just Kidding *Cough*), and that she KNEW that I was loyal to a fault. And considering how her husband cheated on her, that's what she needed most in her life: loyalty and a NON-cheating partner. Though that apparently wasn't something she considered to be mutually important.