Monday, July 30, 2007
A Bit of HerStory
I was born in the year of the dog.
According to the Chinese Culture Center of San Francisco (and they would know), people born in the Year of the Dog possess "the best traits of human nature." Why, little ol' me? Aw gee.
"They have a deep sense of loyalty, are honest, and inspire other people's confidence because they know how to keep secrets." I AM loyal. That wasn't always the case, however.
Well now that didn't come out right. What I'm getting at is I was loyal to my grrrlfriends, but not necessarily my boyfriends. I wasn't a one-boy kinda grrrl. I was honest about it though. When Rob asked if he could call me his grrlfriend after several months of pretty intense courtship, I said... nah. I was a grrrl who liked to keep her options open, was how I reasoned it in my head.
Mostly, it was that I'd get so aggravated when I'd lose best grrlfriends to boys. It really curled my hair when one of my fun grrlfriends would suddenly be unavailable for nights out because she had to go to dinner and a movie with some boy.
I had a lot of energy and there was a lot to do at UW-Madison. "You're going to see a movie? On a Saturday night? But we're all going dancing! Oh, argh..." was my lament. Some guy had to be really amazing for me to choose him over my best grrls. And I hadn't found any yet. They could join US, of course, but if there was any choosing involved, the guy was gonna get the short end of the stick.
"Dog People are somewhat selfish, terribly stubborn, and eccentric." See, says so right there. I said I'm not giving up my carefree lifestyle and I meant it. "They care little for wealth, yet somehow always seem to have money." Or thanks to waitressing, free food and lots of change for parking meters and 25 cent taps. :)
"They can find fault with many things and are noted for their sharp tongues." Ooh ya, I used to get a big fat kick out of tossing out zingers with my biting wit. In fact, one such night stands out sharply as marking the turning point in my relationship with Rob.
Rob, unlike me, had steady girlfriends all along. If he had a grrrl, he was loyal as a dog (despite being a rooster), and before me his latest long-term (as in four years - egad!) relationship had been with a prima donna. His friends had pretty nearly hated her because she competed with them for Rob's attention. She was very pretty and very spoiled. And word on the street was she wanted to get a good look at me. Check out the new grrrl, that sort of thing.
So, we were out on the town and it was late. Walking down the street we passed the bar where she was known to hang out and I said, "Let's go in." Rob wasn't sure that was such a good idea. But I was feeling confident. Knowing a meeting was inevitable, I figured it'd be better to catch her off-guard than the other way around. So in we went. The ex was pretty surprised but she recovered quickly. The old saving face game began and she started sizing me up. She was deep into a game of darts with her new boyfriend, who stiffly shook Rob's hand. She played pretty well and started telling us she was known as the "Dart Queen." Then she looked at me and pointedly asked, raised eyebrows, slight smile and all, "Wanna play?"
Ah, so it's gonna be the ol' make-the-new-grrl-look-bad routine, show Rob he'd made a horrible, terrible mistake in letting her go. Imagine, he could still be with her, and she was a Dart QUEEN.
I made a bit of a fuss that I hadn't played in a long time, but said I'd give it a try. She was nearly giddy with anticipation and said I could go first. So I did. I looked coyly at Rob, who knew what was coming, and threw my 3 darts - double 16, double 18, triple 20. I clapped my hands together and gave a little shout as the Dart Queen's mouth dropped open. Her boyfriend gave out a "Holy Sh*t, that was amazing!" and she didn't like that one bit.
Lucky break, she thought. She tossed some not-so-bad darts, and it was my turn again.
Double 20, triple 20, bulls-eye.
She was steamed by now and actually said she didn't want to play any more. I said, "Dart Queen, huh?" and someone else said "Look like she's been de-throned!" and we left before it got any nastier.
My previous boyfriend had dart machines in his apartment and he and his friends played constantly. Let's just say I'd had a little practice.
I realized I must really like Rob if I felt the need to protect my territory. From then on I was his grrlfriend.