By the end of 2005 I had burned through my supply of men to date so I had to get resourceful in locating more. I was feeding blog fodder and it was quite hilarious – at the time…you know…before people got murdered for answering ads off Craigslist. For me, 2006 goes down as the year of hellacious relationships.
In January we finally got into our office and began setting up shop. There were a couple more people working there but everyone came and went at different times and we rarely saw each other. When my boss did arrive to work on the days I was there, we would play catch-up. It didn’t matter how much time had passed, there was always a lot to discuss. We were like Regis and Kelly, only without the audience.
On February 8th and 9th, we had a conference in Dallas. Everyone from all over the company flew to some hotel, where we were lectured for two days on how to buy land by Ned Flanders. I went to my room the first night around 6 to lay down for a minute before figuring out what to do for dinner. I had / have friends in Dallas and was considering going off to find them.
The phone rang. It was the Boss. He told me to meet him at the bar. I went down there and he and I started drinking. We drank. Drank. And Drank. I really thought that if anything was going to happen, it would happen now. Another Bombay Tonic please. Then some cockblocking President of another division literally sat in between us and stayed. Somewhere around 10:00, me, Boss and Cockblocker went out to find food, ate, drank more, and really got annihilated. Something of note happened at the restaurant, but for the life of me I can’t recall. I think the other Division President did or said something about me to the Boss when I went to the bathroom. I have to consult my source on that one.
We got home Thursday night late. The Boss chose the following Tuesday, Valentines Day, to end his marriage. There was a simple conversation, followed by a door slamming, a bottle of pills, a Britney Spears style hair shaving and subsequent threats of suicide. Kidding. Sort of. Well, not really. Years of verbal abuse by the Mrs. X and he had finally had enough. It took him about 14 years longer than it would have taken me. I would have left on the wedding night after the shit she pulled. Ladies, please. The men all know that women change after marriage. Try not to have your first meltdown during the wedding though, mmmkay?
My lovelife was moving along somewhat. I was seeing the ill-fated “New Jersey” at this point. Dick. I hope that after me, someone had the good sense to teach him that a grand gesture like pushing to spend Valentine’s Day together, then ending things by email is sending mixed messages.
Late one night in March there was a long email exchange with the boss. The content was mostly innocent, but once I mentioned going to bed, and he responded by saying, “great, you had to throw the bed in there,” it was another one of those lines that was just now blurred.
By the way, nothing happened in Dallas to prompt the mention of divorce a few days later. If there was anything that would have or could have happened in Dallas, it didn’t, and we came back to DC and back to our lives as usual. I should correct that to read that nothing physical happened in Dallas. Emotional? Jury still out. He said no. I think yes.
By June of that year, the Boss moved out and into his own place. I know, it was weird to me too that he told his wife he wanted a divorce on Feb 14th and then waited 4 months to move out. But, see aforementioned pills, suicide threats, lather, rinse, repeat and he didn’t want to leave until he felt things were stable. The night he moved out was a Friday. He called me to wish me a happy weekend. I was stunned by the sound of his voice. I said, “What are you doing?” He said, “I just got the boys and I have a bottle of wine and we’re going to sleep on the floor tonight.” He sounded unbelievably happy. Different. I told him this was like I was talking to someone I never spoke to before. He asked what I meant. I couldn’t describe it then. I can’t describe it now. He sounded like a totally different person.
About a month after that, some chick showed up at our office with this freaking ear to ear joker-style grin, mom jeans that were a little too high, and went into the Boss’s office. They went downstairs to the bar to have a drink. Wow. That didn’t take long.
In July, I met Sherlock. We had the ups. We had the downs. By the fall we were somewhat stable and it’s always a good idea when you’re barely somewhat stable to discuss co-habitation, right? One Friday in the late Fall, the Boss asked me what I was doing that weekend.
V: My boyfriend and I are looking for a place to buy together.
The Boss: I hope you know what you are doing.
V: Do I ever?
The Boss: I wouldn’t want to have to write you up.
V: What are you talking about?
The Boss: You know. He’s nutty, and that stuff will trickle into work.
I guess this was the second time a line was crossed. Or the ninth. I wasn’t keeping track, I just knew then that his comment popped out of nowhere. Later that night, I made up an excuse to not see Sherlock so I could sulk. I cannot explain the pit in my stomach, and how much that conversation hurt me. I didn’t want to have job-drama, or boss-drama. We weren’t the same we once were. We had a schtick at the old company and that seemed to have disappeared.
Around 10:30 or 11:00 I texted the Boss and said, “Do you really think that I’ll start messing up at work if I move in with him?” He texted back and said, “No, you’re still thinking about that?” The next night I went to Sherlock’s and when he and I were having sex, guess who pops into my head. (I know, I know.)
I tried to get back to normal at work as quickly as possible. I would go weeks without seeing anyone. It was boring, lonely, and hard to stay motivated to drive almost an hour when I could just work from home. When I saw the Boss it wasn’t for long. He was in my office once just chatting about the latest meltdown from the camp of the ex-Mrs.-Boss.
V: Does she think you’re having an affair?
V: Does she think it’s me?
V: Oh my God! Should I call her?
Boss: Uh, no, that’s not a good idea.
V: Wait, we’re friendly. I need to tell her.
Boss: Yeah, um, I wouldn’t do that. I told her I would never have sex with you.
Then we just looked at each other. Awwwwkward.
The ex-Mrs.-Boss surfaced at the office one day. I felt this insane desire to convince her that I was not fucking her husband, nor was I the reason her marriage ended. But when she came and sat down in my office, she looked so painfully thin. I told her she looked good. She said, “Yeah, well, when someone rips your heart out of your chest, what do you expect?”