Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional.
Nothing should surprise me anymore. I was determined today to make heads or tails of the Sierra thing, to force her hand if need be, I planned to wait till around noon to text her since then she’d likely be awake. But, I got a reply to my CL ad right before 11 am. It was a very short description, spelling was awful, but something about it struck me and seemed familiar. Something about “brunnetee” and “avaialable at 1” and the email alias, two familiar initials. I went to Sierra’s label in my email (I label mail to keep it straight). Sure enough, they were the initials Sierra used in her emails to me before we exchanged phone numbers and started texting, they are her real initials, she goes by a nickname that starts with a different letter. I was a bit taken aback because I was figuring that she would be fucking mattress dude so she could score weed, not combing CL (dear lord, hopefully not both). But it was her alright, I had no doubt in my mind. There was no way she could identify the ad as mine, right? There was no picture, just some text and I always fudged the stats slightly for each ad, and she was so oblivious I doubted she could pick out my style if she tried (ok, that is unfair and mean, I’m probably selling her short, I know she is smarter than she acts most of the time). I decided to text her a bit early, but as I had planned previously, just asking her to give me a call when she was up. No response. I get the evil temptation to fuck with her, I changed my send-as alias in my email so she wouldn’t recognize it, but then I hesitated. I wrote out an email telling her it was me and to give me a call, but then changed my mind again. Finally, I settled on, “hey, I’ll meet you at 1, got pics?” 20 minutes later she says “I do, lol” and sends a nude of herself at the beach (no face), but definitely her, I’d recognize those perfectly shaped tits anywhere, and she has a very distinctive belly button. She definitely doesn’t know it is me. I try calling her, but she doesn’t pick up, I text again, no response. She’s up and looking on CL, but she’s ignoring me.
My heart is starting to thump a bit. It was a golden opportunity, maybe I could arrange a meeting, show up at 1 and give her a surprise, or arrange it and stand her up? No, this is stupid, I’ll take the high road. I write out an honest email reply, giving the game up and asking her to please call me, but as I do I start pouring my heart and soul into this email, telling her how I really feel about her, how I feel bad about fucking everything up, that I’m going to miss her and all the great times we had, but I just would like a little closure. It was a beautifully worded email if I do say so myself. I sat there for a while, thinking about sending it, finally I pull the trigger. I can imagine her realization when she saw it was me behind that ad. But, half an hour went by, no response. I try calling and texting again, no answer. Now, I’m losing it, getting a little frustrated, is this how she wants to go out? I mean, I guess what we had didn’t mean anything to her, but I happened to enjoy it and I just wanted to say goodbye, get some closure, and move on. I sent her a few more frantic texts saying as much, I’d totally lost my cool.
My phone rang.
“Hey,” Sierra’s soft voice said like she always did, like she was just waking up from a long slumber.
“What’s up.” I replied calmly, “Are you really only 5’4″?”
“Yeah, I guess, I don’t know. So, why do you keep saying ‘last time’, and ‘closure’?”
“I figured you were done with me, I mean, you didn’t want to get together, you are searching for hook-ups on CL.”
“Haha, is this because I didn’t like your hotel idea? You are like so apologetic in this message, I don’t know what you are sorry for, but I like it, you should apologize some more, makes you sound Canadian,” she was laughing pretty hard.
I sighed, a mix of relief and embarrassment. Normally I hide my insecurities pretty well, keep them deep down, buried, sometimes I forget they exist, I thought they’d gone for good, but my erectile issues had brought them back to life, and they’d sprouted dark wings causing my nightmares to soar into the air. Were they really nothing more than phantoms, had I imagined all of Sierra’s disdain for me? Was this just a massive case of oneitis? She really had been non-communicative and evasive, I had the texts. But, I thought the same thing in the beginning of our relationship. I realized, there is nothing predictable about this girl, and I’d played into my own worst fears, making massive assumptions mostly about what she didn’t say, than what she did. Plus, I’d completely tipped my hand and revealed how invested I’d become in her, I didn’t go as far as to tell her I love her, but I’m sure she could read between the lines how fond I’d become of her. Still, she didn’t mention any of that.
“You totally freaked out on me, haha,” she continued, caricaturing lines from my email and texts.
“Damn… well… yeah, I did. I guess I let my insecurities get the better of me. I thought you were done with me. Shit, I’m never going to live this down, haha.” I was laughing along with her at my foolishness, “I figured if it was over I just wanted to say goodbye, since I enjoyed our time together and I think you are a lovely person. But, what were you doing on CL, looking for more dudes to fuck?”
“Well, you were on there hunting pussy…” she said, she did have me there, and it isn’t like I expected her fidelity, that would be silly.
“So, do you want to get together this weekend when my wife is gone.”
“Will there be juice boxes?”
“Yeah, I guess, like Tree Top, or that fake Juicy Juice shit?”
“I like Apple. And a vanilla latte.”
For some reason, the call hung up after that. It sounded like she dropped her phone so I texted her when she didn’t answer when I tried calling back. I asked if she wanted to have lunch, but no reply for a good five minutes, then:
Not dressed for closure
All the better if you are naked
Do you have Nutella
Nop, fresh out, grilled cheese on sourdough is all I got
You said you were available at 1 right? If you are going to bang other dudes from CL, have those fuckers wrap it up, I'd rather not catch anything, I got condoms if you need em
I'm in my car
And laughing at seemingly elephants
I could just go put on pants
If you must
Sounds like she got her car back, so that’s nice. I parked in her apartment complex’s lot, and a few minutes later she rolled up to the passenger door on her skateboard. She brought cranberry sauce and a bottle of tea to contribute to our little picnic. She apparently thought it would be a great idea to spread cranberry sauce on the sandwiches I made, which she liberally spread on both of ours before I could say anything. It wasn’t bad, but I told her it didn’t really add anything. It wasn’t as good as her hummus and pretzel idea last time. She also didn’t seem to have any compunction about getting cranberry sauce all over my shirt.
“I have no respect for work clothes, wouldn’t you be happy if you had a job where you didn’t have to dress like a dweeb?”
“Actually, I like dressing like this. You’re really in an odd mood even for you, and being rather unkind, what’s gotten into you?”
Not sure what was going on with her, she’s always a little crazy, but the cranberry sauce was a little far. After I said that though, she softened considerably, and started being a somewhat normal caring human being. I suppose she’s just acting her age.
She showed me a bunch of pictures on her phone of her Thanksgiving which I hadn’t seen yet while we smoked a bowl, she had more standard weed this time, not the ridiculously beautiful stuff that mattress dude had given her, by the sounds of it she wasn’t seeing him.
“There’s me, of course, and my mom, who you’re supposed to bang.”
“Rrrrraw, I can see the resemblance, what did she say when she saw my message?”
“Haha, she told me that one day I should start looking for lasting relationships.”
“But, she approves of your activities?”
“Well, she doesn’t really know, she is Catholic, so probably not if she did.”
“Well, when you are Catholic can’t you do anything you want, as long as you feel guilty about it later?”
“Hehe, that’s why I am a good Catholic girl.”
Her phone dinged continually (pretty typical), mostly from her friend, ‘Juan’, who apparently needed to come and get some drug paraphanial out of her car. He finally called and she answered.
“Where are you, Sierra?” I could hear his frustrated voice on the other end.
“I’m at my car… smoking, I’ve been here for like half and hour waiting for you.” Sierra sighed heavily, lying.
“I just drove by your car, you were not there.”
“Hghh.” Sierra made a disgusted sound and hung up on him. “Fuckin’ Juan.”
She then discovered a zit underneath my mustache that she had to pop, and spent a good while on it.
“Don’t be such a baby, man up and let me get it.”
“Fine, better be worth it.”
She finally, and very painfully, purged it as a tear rolled down my cheek as I sat silently.
“Ooooh, you’re crying! Awww, I was just going to keep going until you told me to stop!” She gasped when she saw the tear, I couldn’t tell if she was mocking me or not, in hindsight, I think she may have actually felt bad.
“I wasn’t going to stop you after I’d told you to go ahead.” I laughed.
I was a wimp when it came to pain, but I was also more stubborn than anything if someone challenged me, to the point of foolishness. It reminded me of one of my early dates with my future wife. Someone offered me a cigarette out back of a bar, I took it. My wife was apalled that I would smoke, so she took the cigarette from me and threatened to burn me with it. I’m sure she wasn’t serious, but I held out my arm for her, and she shoved the burning end into it and held it, thinking I’d take my arm away, instead I just looked at her without flinching and said “Really? So this is happening now?”, she immediately started yelling at me, “what are you doing?! Stop!” and I laughed and laughed (I think if I didn’t laugh I was going to cry) as I said, “hey, you are the one holding the cigarette!” I didn’t cry that time, but it hurt like a mother, but the scar isn’t as bad as you’d think from a 700 degree ember, my wife still feels bad about it. I’m not sure why I mention this, I guess because men are strange creatures, we endure pain (often self-inflicted) for dumb, fruitless reasons, I don’t know if it is a misplaced sense of honor, or a way of proving ourselves like some vestigal throwback to our cavemen ancestors, hoping to prove ourselves to the tribe and potential mates.
Juan was calling again for the fourth time, she finally answered.
“Sierra! Where the fuck are you?!”
“Look, I’m with someone right now, I was just at my car.”
“No, you weren’t, I just went by your car again, you weren’t there!” Juan sounded rather flustered at this point.
“Ok, I’m just going inside to grab something, then I’m going back to my car, I’ll meet you there in five minutes. Bye.” She said earnestly before hanging up. “Alright, I guess I better go, I don’t really feel like making introductions if he drives by again and sees me over here. I’m just going to leave all my shit in here if thats ok.”
“Me either, fine, here take your weed.”
All she ended up leaving was the knife she brought to spread the cranberry sauce. She hopped out of the car, gave me a smile and waved.
“See ya.” I said before starting the car and driving back to work.
I feel like I have closure. As embarassing as it was coming clean with her about how I felt about her, it felt good, I felt it had broken the spell. It seems, at least from Sierra’s perspective, that it isn’t over between us. I don’t know why she ignored me until I sent her that email. Had she really been done with me, or just screwing with me? Did she call me out of pity or genuine interest? Maybe she is just a selfish narcissist and we mere mortals are just subject to her momentary whims and desires? In any case, I’m no longer really concerned by these questions or their answers. I’m not so much concerned now about whether or not I’ll see her this coming weekend, but whether or not I’m going to catch anything from all the other guys she may be fucking. If I do see her this weekend I should plan on having a box of condoms by the bedside. I’d seen how she interacted with other people before, the texts she sent, the ones she ignored, the calls she took, the calls she ignored. She could be rude, but most of the time she was just untruthful. At first, I’d found it endearing, but now it just seemed petulant. She may be popular, and given her beauty she’ll always have friends, but I’ve found that quality friends won’t put up with that shit for long, and you’ll be left with a bunch of self-loathing ass-kissers who you can kick around as you see fit, but, one day, you’ll sit there wondering where all your good friends went. I’d found treating people well goes a long way towards filtering for quality relationships. Still, she’d never given me the run around like she gave Juan, so maybe she has some fondness for me after all, I know I wouldn’t put up with it long.
I wasn’t as bothered by her apparent “easiness” as you’d think, having caught her seeking hook-ups on Craigslist (what a hypocrit I’d be if I condemned her behavior). She could fuck 2 or 3 guys a day without hardly lifting a finger if she wanted, trawling CL. But, I also know she is superficial, vain, flakey, and very particular, so maybe she was just always in search mode. She used to claim to me, “I don’t usually go all the way”, who knows with this girl, I have substantial doubts about that claim. Made me glad that I had a son, when he grows up I’ll only have to worry about 1 penis, if he had been a girl, I’d have to worry about all of them. All this hardly matters, the point was, I feel like I’m breaking free of Sierra’s grasp.