I was in my weekly sales meeting when I received the following text…
I did it! I finally left the bastard!
I didn’t recognize the number, nor could I think of anyone with a bastard they wanted to leave, so I typed the following reply…
I’m sorry, but who is this?
Just as I was about to hit send, I had a change of heart. There had to be an interesting story behind this, why not play along and find out what it was? So I sent this reply instead….
You did?! What happened?
I was right. The answer I received was interesting.
I got tired of his cheatin’-ass ways, that’s what happened! I deserve better, much better!
I was going to answer back ‘You go girl!’, but then I remembered I had no idea who I was texting. In this day and age, it could have easily been a guy, and that’s why I decided to keep it general until I found out more.
Amen to that! What are you going to do now?
Take some time for myself. Maybe become one of those strong and independent women, like you.
So I was talking to a woman…a woman who thought that I was a strong and independent version of herself, when in reality I’m a guy who’s afraid of that type. It’s not that I need a damsel in distress to make me feel all manly; it’s just that I’m not turned on by women who act more manly than I.
That’s my girl! I then texted, since I knew I was indeed conversing with a female.
God, I miss you!! I wish we lived closer. Me being in Vancouver and you being in Toronto sucks. Remember how much fun we had back in university?
There were a lot of sad and angry emoji faces attached to the end of that text, but at least I knew more about my new friend, which made me feel even more comfortable playing along.
I’m surprised we didn’t get arrested, all the crazy things we did!
We did get arrested! Remember? We chained ourselves to that giant tree the city was going to cut down.
Shit! Of all the people I could have been pretending to be, I had to end up being an environmental activist in my youth. I work for a plastics company that doesn’t give two hoots about the environment. I tried to cover by injecting a bit of levity.
So many trees, so many run-ins with the law! It all grows fuzzy after awhile! Just like the yogurt in the back of my fridge!
You’re not a vegan anymore?
Oh for fuck’s sake! I’m a vegan now, too? This chick’s friend really is the worst! How to recover? How to recover?
Soy milk is a beautiful thing!
Even though soy milk is horrendous. An ex made me try it once. I liked it about as much as I liked her flannel pajamas.
I may be coming to Toronto in a few months for a conference. We should get together!
That last bit piqued my interest. What if I continued to pretend to be her old friend and we did arrange to meet? When we finally met face-to-face for real, maybe she would find the whole story of how I had just recently switched to a new cell phone number and maybe it used to belong to her friend hilarious. Maybe she would fall madly in love with me and I could be the non-cheating bastard who restores her faith in men. Or maybe my ruse would solidify her belief that all men are jerks.
We should! Let me know closer to the date and we’ll figure something out.
I had a few months to figure out whether or not to take the charade any further. In the meantime, my plastics company wasn’t going to ruin this woman’s precious environment all on its own, so I got back to the business of being me.