An Ex Round Every Corner

When you’ve dated in the triple digits like I have, you’re bound to run into a couple of casualties once in a while. That’s what happened to me last night. I went to one of the larger supermarkets in town and, being Easter Monday, the store was quiet and the shelves were noticeably depleted. I rounded one aisle and began searching spices for ingredients to make Chai Tea. I paused for this blond woman to move and that’s when I noticed her companion.

Hmmm.  He looked strangely familiar. It was Balloon_Boy. Remember the clown with the lewd balloons? I felt certain he saw me; he looked suddenly uncomfortable, moving away before she was finished. I had to smile. I’d say hello, given the opportunity. I retreated on to the next aisle and wham, there was Craig. He’s the one I met at a coffee shop across from the ocean; the musician and artist. He was co-writer of ‘The Waitress’ Garden of Dreams.’

“Hey, Adrienne!” he greeted me warmly.

“Where have you been? I’ve missed you! Hey,” I whispered to him, “Balloon-Boy is in the store—go check him out.”

Craig was my confidante for years, before someone nabbed him and made him her house-boy.

“Really? Balloon_Boy? You mean the one who made those,” and he made twisting motions with his hands.

“Yes, lewd balloons. He’s down one of those aisles with his girlfriend.”

“I gotta check this out. I’ll meet you at the checkout.”

I headed to the cashiers and beyond was the produce department and there I spied my ex-roommate, Michael. He’s moved departments and now he was happy to be stocking veggies and fruit. I hadn’t seen him for a couple of weeks since our lunch date, but we still texted regularly. His back was to me as he arranged shiny red apples in bins.

I looked like yesterday’s Easter Egg decorated by a pre-schooler with my purple leggings, grey exercise top with orange trim, and a pink baseball cap with the words ‘Online Poker’ written on the brim.  I wasn’t dressed to meet anyone, but both Craig and the ex-roommate have seen me at my worst. Yet, a woman has her pride; I should know better. When women look like I did that evening, usually the man of our dreams will be standing in line, eying her getup like she’s the upcoming shopping cart lady on the East Side.

I turned quickly into the first available checkout, ducking out of the ex-roommate’s view. Craig soon joined me. We gathered our groceries and were about to leave when two good looking women stopped and began chatting him up. I waited patiently. I could tell by the way they looked up at him that they were attracted, like flies to a bone.

“I know them from my job at the gas station,” he revealed with an apologetic smile. “Do you have your car here?” he asked.

“Yes, do you want a ride?”

Now Craig generally does not inconvenience female acquaintances, as his girlfriend will never understand. If he even entertains the thought of having a female friend… but, I found out as we walked together, that she was out of town for a couple of days and he was a free man. He looked great, still wearing that Kongol hat, and I could see his chipped tooth in front was finally capped.

“I was so upset to learn you were no longer at the gas station, but then, I was glad for you, Craig.” I clipped my seat belt and reversed the car.

“I have no time! I travel too much now. She took me to Hawaii for five weeks. I enjoyed that.”

“Who wouldn’t?”

“We went to Memphis for my birthday. She took me there to celebrate. That was fun. I have no time to work anymore.”

Spoken like a true house-boy. That’s not fair. I like Craig a lot. I told him about the column I was writing. He listened with interest.

“I wrote about you!”

He beamed a smile at me.

“I want to read that. What did you write?”

“It was nice, Craig. Remember that song we wrote together?”

“That waitress song?”

“Yeah. We’ve had some fun. I miss our talks.”

“Well, give me your number again. I’ll call you. We could meet at…. the Wired Monk sometime,” he pulled out his cell phone and I gave him my number.

We pulled in front of his new digs, the girlfriend’s condo. It’s an expensive one, with a view of the water. He used to live in a bachelor’s suite on the other side of town.

“Okay, I’ll call you, Adrienne,” he promised.

But, I know he won’t. He’s moved into Couple’s Land. It’s a place where people, friends, disappear seemingly forever. Especially if it’s a friend of the opposite sex. His girlfriend will never stand for it and if he’s smart he won’t take a chance on losing what he has now. A woman who shares her life, her condo, her wealth, sets some conditions. He and I would have been starving artists together. We’d still be at the Wired Monk sharing ideas and laughing—and dreaming.

I wonder if he still plays guitar.

 

An Ex Round Every Corner © 2011 Adrienne S Moody. Read the latest Adrienne exploit on Now.readthisplease.

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4 Responses to “An Ex Round Every Corner”
  1. JKefoury says:

    It’s always when you aren’t dressed up, that you run into people. Whereas when you think you’re looking great you see no one. =p lol.

  2. Lou Bullara says:

    Thanks for really using allowable grammar. Almost all sites were absolute gibberish. Fantastic website & writing skills. You my friend have Talent! I just StumbledUpon this. Not bad. I’ll give it a thumbs up.

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