Wednesday, October 19, 2005

How to piss off a girl in three minutes or less

Thursday, August 4, 2005
Heather's house (continued)

"In the spare bedroom, Steve!"

I like the way Heather runs her home. Her house is extremely neat, even though she seems to be busy all the time, and she gets a lot of things done, yet she never seems stressed out. I know how hard it must be to be a single parent and I admire her for facing the challenge head-on and never complaining.

I lean in the doorway of her spare bedroom and watch as she furiously writes out a check for her electric bill. Her hands are slim and strong-looking, with short fingernails and a single, simple ring on her left thumb.

"What's up, sweetie?" she asks, not looking up.

"I need to talk to you."

"What about?" she peeks up from her writing.

"I don't think we should see each other anymore."

She turns to face me, her mouth closing, then opening, her head shaking slightly, as if she can't quite believe what she's heard.

"I- why, Steve?"

"Heather, one guy has already- dropped the ball when it comes to Casey, and-"

"OH no," she laughs. "Do NOT make this about Casey. This has NOTHING to do with Casey."

"Yeah, it does."

"No it doesn't! You've seen Casey what, five, six times tops?"


"I only asked you to babysit because it was an emergency-"

"This has nothing to do with babysitting. It's just that we've been seeing each other a lot, and things are starting to-"

"Fester?" she says, sarcastically, her eyebrow raised.

It was a good line. Frankly, I didn't expect her to come up with anything that clever, and she's thrown me off a little.

"No, Heather! But if we keep seeing each other, I'll be seeing more of Casey too."


"So, if it doesn't work out-"

"Why do you keep saying that? Why do you keep saying, 'if it doesn't work out'? Are you planning on it not working out? Do you not want it to work out? What?"

Time to change the subject! Let's see: How about, "Do you think this country will ever switch to the metric system?" or, "Isn't it something about those hurricanes down south? That greenhouse effect is a sonofabitch, no?"

"I'm saying IF, not WHEN. Now there's a third party involved, and we have to be more careful."

"Do NOT tell me how to raise my child!" she shouts, her lips tight, her eyes narrowed fiercely. "I love my daughter more than anything else in the world. If I thought there were any chance of her being harmed by this, I wouldn't be with you!"

It's actually a good point. But my mind keeps going back to that picture I found. I think she's right, inasmuch as she doesn't think she's doing anything to hurt Casey. But I still stand by my original position; I have been down this road many times, with many women. I know better than she does what is going to happen, and I can't be so cavalier about it when there is a child involved.

She reminds me of Stephanie in a way: She is strong-willed, and smart, and fierce when she has to be, but she also has a tender side, and a horny side too. She is a likeable person, and I am sure she was a good wife to her husband before he took off.

"Heather, we talked about this. I told you I wasn't looking for-"

"You weren't looking for a commitment? No, you said you wanted to take it slow. There's a difference."

"That's not what I said."

"So we're going to argue semantics now?"

"Heather, you don't want to be with me," I say, impatiently.

"Why are you telling me what I want? Why do you keep talking to me like I'm a child?"

"I don't mean to."

"You know what I think? I think we are starting to get close, and you are getting scared. And you're using Casey as an excuse, which I think is the most cowardly thing in the world."

"Fine. I'm a coward. So forget about me, and you'll be better off."