Stranger Snap Judgment

I recently started working at an undisclosed workout facility in Denver. Even though I’ve only been there a few weeks, I’m already feeling right at home.

This is probably because all the other girls who work the front desk with me are also single, so we can relate to one another . We are Divorcees or Never-Marrieds, and we all have pets. We come to work with stories about our pets and we all have hundreds of pictures of those pets on our phones. Here’s one of my favorites:

My Dog In Glasses.


Last Tuesday, I worked with a girl named A for the first time.

Although A and I had never worked together before, we left feeling like sorority sisters. This is partly due to my tendency to blurt out every thought that pops into my brain without a second thought. The girl knows that I’ve weighed myself, pooped and weighed myself again. She knows I have to block all of my (ahem, both of my) Ex’s on Facebook so I don’t get drunk, scroll through all the smutty pictures they posted of themselves making out with skanks and burst into tears. She knows I verbally lash out at my cat and call him fat when I put on weight, even though my cat is really skinny and it isn’t his fault that I ate cookies for breakfast. How can we not be friends with her holding that kind of intimate knowledge about me?

Towards the end of our shift, proving my aforementioned bonding tactics effective, A really opened up and asked for my advice in the following scenario:

While she was on vacation on an undisclosed tropical island, she met a young soldier (US ARMY). They didn’t have the opportunity to exchange anything besides numbers (I say smart move, as I am firmly against the abandoned swapping of bodily fluids with strangers). Still, she left the island and must have left an impression on our young solider as he commenced the modern art of daily text message flirtation. Le Swoon.

Some of the texts were adult-content-flirtatious. Needless to say, she was eagerly anticipating her return to the island on business later this month. She didn’t say it, but I’m willing to bet she scheduled a waxing of her lady bits. I would have.

Here’s the twist: one week out from her return to the island, the young soldier sends her a text saying that he is busy with work and will text her later that evening.

She waits 2 days. Nothing.

She breaks down and texts him.


She waits another day and sends one.last.text.


She says it just doesn’t make any sense.

At this point in the conversation, I point out the huge elephant I see sitting quietly on A’s shoulder: THAT BASTARD HAS ANOTHER GIRL.

She recoils. I feel bad, I do let my dirty sailor mouth get the best of me sometimes; he probably knows his father, I shouldn’t call him a bastard.

I remind myself to be gentle. I say,

Look, A. I know there is a chance that he might have gotten into a car accident on Friday and he had every intention of texting you that evening, but he can’t now because he is in a coma and if you rushed to the hospital and grabbed his hand and told him just how much his daily emoticon has come to mean to you, he’ll open his eyes and be miraculously healed. You’ll share true love’s first kiss and wear glass slippers down the aisle. Merry Christmas.

However, I think the more realistic question is not “did he fall victim to a terrible accident” but, rather, “did he meet this other girl on Friday, or has he been stringing her along the whole time?” It sounds like he enjoyed keeping you on the back-burner for attention, but he can’t do all those things he wanted to do with you because it would make for an unpleasant situation between him and his other special lady.

A agrees, but says from what she can tell, he is not that type of guy.

I give an empathetic nod, I have shit taste in men too.

I start a new rant, this time focusing on him being young and in the ARMY. I curse the military culture I know that embraces infidelity, strip clubs and sexual harassment. I pick a few prime examples from my own first hand knowledge of military relationships and then impetuously blurt out, “I bet this dirt bag has kids in every time zone, and he probably is skimping on paying child support!”

Ugh, there I go again, ever so slightly over the top.

By this time, I’m pretty sure A is regretting asking for my advice on the matter. I back-pedal before she writes me off as a bitter harpy.

Or, maybe he really is in a coma. And that first kiss is really going to rock your socks off.

I’m nothing, if not a hopeless romantic.


About ermodi

i like champagne and nachos. i watch people’s mouths move when they talk to me and judge if they are a good kisser i like to write with fine-tip Sharpies because i think it makes me look confident i bite my nails i think doing the dishes is a very lonely chore i think “autumn” is the prettiest word in the English language. i believe in love – or, at least something that resembles love, but i don’t trust this idea of forever.
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