Watching the hellogiggles.com video about terrible anniversary gifts made me think about something.

I had a boyfriend who was super condescending and always tried to make me think I was dumb. Not like cute and ditsy and saying “like” too much, but like straight up dumb. I would get nervous if a game of tick-tack-toe came around, that I would idly miss a row of three X’s forming in front of me and he’d finally have his proof. He lived in New York and when I would come out to visit him I had nothing to do. He had a regular job during the day and I figured I was on vacation and would just kill time until he got home. He didn’t think that was the best use of my time. He would make me wake up at 7AM with him, and take the train from Brooklyn into the city. He would make his way into the office and send me out to the streets of Manhattan expecting me to find an adventure. Usually I was a bit jet lagged and it felt like I had woken up at 4AM. This excuse was not good enough to get to sleep in. Sometimes I would walk over to Barney’s and let the girls apply different make-up on me, sometimes I would sit with a book at a coffee shop and read while I nodded off back to sleep, once I sat on a stoop in Soho at 8am and called my sister who was on the same time zone in Florida, and I cried to her about how nothing was open yet and I didn’t know where to go and I didn’t have a key to the apartment to sneak back in and go to bed. One day I woke up with a great idea. I was going to go to a museum. The Guggenheim to be exact. How fancy of me, right? My boyfriend was so happy that I had some interest in exposing myself to something other than reality tv (for the story’s sake, we’ll pretend this is true) and he obviously urged me to get there sooner rather than later. Looking back I’m realizing he probably didn’t want me to be alone in his apartment considering that every time I did find myself alone there I would find something shady, like a note that would say, “Having sex with you last week was fun. You left your underwear in my shower”. Anyway, I got to the Guggenheim and I immediately assumed everyone was looking at me like, “look at her, she looks so smart and artsy and cerebral!”. I walked around the museum and tried to stand as long as possible in front of each painting. A lot of it was modern. Some canvasses would just be bright green with random words on them, like “Breath… Lost… Floor… Dead…” I focused hard, really trying to soak up the culture, but it just wasn’t really catching on for me. I made an effort to seem impressed and put a look on my face that showed I was getting the hidden message, but I just kept wondering if there was a Starbucks nearby. There was some classic art in there too, of which I would start to read the description and then just stand there so people wouldn’t judge me walking away too quickly. When I had walked through the whole place and found myself  back at the beginning it had been about an hour, maybe forty five minutes. I was proud of myself. I called my boyfriend just to be breezy about my museum experience. “You’re already done?!” Uh oh. Clearly I didn’t stay long enough. He was not impressed. He was actually kind of appalled. It seemed like I had actually made myself look worse. So you’re basically either reading this thinking what a dick he is, or you’re thinking that I’m a bigger retard than you had thought and have no capacity for culture and NYC is the greatest city in the world and for me to be bored there I don’t deserve to live. Well, either feeling is fine by me. I mean, I’d prefer the one about him being a dick, but I’ve learned that I don’t care as much as I used to about pleasing people. That’s the lesson here. If you’re fighting to be good enough for someone’s approval, they will never let you win so give em the boot. I don’t know why I put up with it, I think I kept thinking he was about to be super rich and I wanted to be there for the gifts. But happiness is more important than material things… blah blah blah (having both is great though).

Oh wait! I totally got off track. I was starting to write about an anniversary gift story. I was going to write about how for an anniversary he got me a subscription to The New Yorker and basically quizzed me every week on if I had read it. I actually can’t hate on The New Yorker at all. Please, I’m a writer, I love reading other great writers (see how I just bulked myself in with them? Who do I think I am?) and I got a lot out of reading it every week. But it wasn’t the most romantic of gifts, and it obviously had the hidden agenda of controlling my mind. Whatever, he’s like miserable now.

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