There’s a piece of advice your mother probably gave you that goes a little something like this: “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.”
It’s pretty sound. But just like wearing white after labour day, and wearing camisoles under sheer tops, it’s a rule I’m sure you break every so often. Gossiping about other people is an inevitable part of life, just like death and taxes, so I’m not really here to give you a lecture on how to ameliorate your nasty habit of running your mouth. However, there’s usually that one moment where you’re talking about someone behind their back, and it comes back to bite you in the ass. Literally. They’re right behind you.
Case in point: The Artist.
I went on what probably was a great first date with someone who shall now be named “The Artist.” At least, I think it was a first date, because there was a wholesome activity followed by slightly less wholesome activities, which resulted in the whole night feeling as if I were trapped in a strange mix of a Louis CK episode, a Woody Allen film, and a classic American screwball comedy. Ergo, date. Right?
It seemed to go pretty well, despite my serious case of resting bitchface syndrome, and being a basket of nerves. But in some alternate universe, that’s kind of charming? Needless to say, and quite expectantly, if something had gone so swimmingly that it can be only described in cinematic terms, the chances of it ever happening again are zero to nil.
Fast forward to a couple days ago. I’m having a late, slightly more liquid lunch with my friend. Somewhat amused by my current man dilemma, I launch into what I like to call the iPhone-stalk-and-bitch. Wherein you stalk your paramour on Facebook while bitching about every single minute detail. The drunker you are when you do this? The cattier you have a tendency to be. Not just cattier…but louder as well.
Do you see where I’m going with this?
So I turn my head over, and across the restaurant there’s the object of my vitriolic affection…
I think the phrase “oh shit” barely even begins to cover the mortification that one could feel in that moment.
Frantically wanting to escape the alcohol induced embarrassment that I seem to have gotten myself into, I grabbed my sunglasses (conveniently oversized should such an occasion ever arise), did my best impersonation of Captain Jack Sparrow (flailing arms and all), and with a self possession that was more comical than anything, barrelled straight past his table, not even stopping to make even the shortest bit of eye contact.
Overdramatic? Yes. Will I ever see him again? Probably not. One for the books? Hell to the fucking yes.
If there’s a lesson to be learned out of any of this: Sometimes we do the craziest things when we’re unfit for social interaction. And long island iced teas are kind of deadly.