Vents and Promises

Every month I have the same conversation with my best friend at work. It’s always on a day when my boss is ragging on me, assignments are piled on my desk and I haven’t had a break to eat lunch.  I sulk over to his desk and I tell him, “I’m done.”

You see, if you knew me, like really knew me…it makes sense. I’m a quirky social person whose interpersonal skills are strongest.  Yet, I sit behind a computer screen working in the background of a financial operation.  I literally speak to no one.  Every day that goes by, I waste my talents and I don’t deal with anything that excites me.  I have no passion and no drive in my professional environment and it shows.  The wind is and has been out of my sails for a while and I’m ready to admit it.

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I used to write this blog and update it regularly. It was a creative outlet that gave me something to look forward to each week.  In a way I thought, maybe one topic or a certain story would strike a nerve with an audience and inspire the elusive next step.  Or maybe in my creative state, I would finally happen on an idea, something that would give me the momentum to get out of this dull soul-sucking workplace.

I have 1,000 excuses and 400 reasons why I shouldn’t leave my job; the subtext of all of them is fear. Fear of failure, the unknown, and fear that my family will suffer why I selfishly pursue professional happiness.  A true “first world problem”, I suppose.

In an effort to boost my own moral and get back into something I enjoy…I want to start blogging again. I have some juicy new stories to share and I need to start making time.  Join me as I begin flexing my creative muscles in an effort to stop complaining and start doing something about it.

If you have your own story to share about discovering your true passion or leaving the corporate world for a more satisfying career, I would love to hear what you have to say. And for the rest of you, the cubicle warriors that can’t stand the daily grind, I’ll shower you with snark from a hater to get you through the day.

 

 

 

Go head girl, Go head get down!

Eventually Laura and Peter’s relationship evolved but it was more by osmosis then healthy progression. The late night booty calls turned into sleepovers and the sleepovers became all day hangouts. Peter had premium cable and ordered unlimited take out on his parent’s credit card. They often had no reason to venture outside his well-stocked pad, not even for class. Peter had a job waiting for him in NY once he graduated, so studying was low on his list of priorities. Easily influenced, Laura’s class attendance started to suffer too. Spending luxurious days with Peter was far more gratifying to Laura then making good grades.

Peter bought Laura Prada sneakers and a Burberry scarf. Laura could even be spotted driving Peter’s BWM across campus once in awhile. At Peter’s parties, Laura played the part of hostess and to many it appeared that Peter and Laura were in a committed relationship. However, people close to Peter knew differently, he had not surrendered his philandering ways. Rumor had it that Peter still dated other women behind Laura’s back; he allegedly even fooled around with some of her acquaintances. It is sad to say, but publicly, Peter and Laura’s relationship was known to be one sided.

Now and again, Laura’s true friends would confront her about Peter’s indiscretions. Laura refused warnings about Peter and pointed to gifts in order validate Peter’s love. There was no hard evidence that he was cheating on her and she would not bother upsetting Peter with mere suspicions. Instead, Laura moved more of her own personal affects into Peter’s apartment. By being a constant presence in Peter’s life, she could ensure that she was the only woman. She cried when Peter left the apartment without her and used Peter’s friends to keep abreast of his activities while they were apart.

One weekend, Laura had to leave University to attend a function in her hometown. She invited Peter who had no interest. Begrudgingly, Laura left for the weekend only to be unpleasantly surprised when she returned to school. Instead of going to her own apartment, Laura went right to Peter’s place when she got back. She entered the apartment (with the key she had made) and noticed that things were not as she had left them. Her clothes were in a trash bag in the closet, her Prada sneakers were hidden under the bed and the picture of Peter and her together was stuffed into his bedside drawer. The pinnacle of it all was a used condom in the garbage. A tearful phone call to Peter confirmed her fears. This time it was undeniable.

Laura began to pack her things and called a friend to help her move her stuff from his apartment. Knowing Peter’s reputation, the friend was not surprised to hear of the discovery (one guess who the friend is). Laura’s friend packed her car and was ready to help Laura get situated in her old apartment. As they were leaving the parking lot Laura turned to her friend and said, “Stop the car.” Laura asked to go back to the entrance of Peter’s apartment. Thinking that she left something behind, the friend reversed back to the double doors. Laura got out of the car and began to unload her bags back onto the sidewalk. The baffled friend demanded and explanation but there was no rational behind the change of heart. Plain and simple, Laura did not want to give up the lifestyle. She loved the apartment and all of the extras that went along with living there. Letting go of Peter meant going back to coach after a year in first class…she would not do it.

A couple weeks later, Peter had a birthday party for Laura at his apartment. It was a half-assed affair thrown together at the last minute. Her friend came and watched her open her gifts. Peter gave Laura not one, but two pairs of designer sunglasses. They were gorgeous, lavish and obviously very expensive. The friend felt a pang of jealousy knowing that she would never have a real pair of Channel sunglasses. However, the envious feeling faded as her friend realized that she had something that Peter could not buy Laura…self-respect.

I know this dude’s ballin, and yeah that’s nice…

As I mentioned before, Peter was quite the playboy. The money and the designer duds helped him achieve instant popularity on campus. He was affiliated with an on campus fraternity and was a regular attendee of all the hip parties. Laura had easy access to Peter and would often approach him mid-fiesta. Eventually, they started leaving social gatherings together and spending time together became a regular occurrence.

Laura and Peter were having a fling but she could hardly call herself his girlfriend. Take Halloween for example: Laura and Peter had been hooking up since early September. Once Halloween rolled around, Laura figured she was on track to be Peter’s date to the fraternity’s annual costume party. The date approached and Laura was not invited. She confronted Peter and demanded to know the reason. Peter looked her right in the eye and told her; he had invited his ex-girlfriend from New York instead. She was driving down and would be spending the weekend in order to attend the party.

At this point, the majority or women would pull the plug on Peter. He was clearly not interested in Laura and frankly did not care about her opinion of him. As it was, a platonic male friend invited Laura to the party. She was dolled up and waiting for Peter when he walked in with his cute as a button NY ex. Peter walked right on by Laura, not even acknowledging her presence. Despite her devastation, Laura planted herself in strategic locations to see and speak with Peter throughout the night. She was desperate to bait him and prevail over his former girlfriend. Alas, the night ended with Laura heading back to the dorm alone and Peter and the ex heading back to his lush off campus apartment.

Fast forward a couple days, it is a random weeknight and some friends get together for an impromptu drink. Laura and Peter are both present. The ex had long since returned to New York and Peter’s hormones were raging he was looking for the evening’s lucky lady. Laura, missing the comfort of Peter’s Egyptian cotton sheets made herself available for a one on one after party. Later on, Laura would explain that she took the opportunity to confront Peter about Halloween. According to Laura, Peter explained that spending a final weekend with the ex helped him move on. This satisfied Laura although she had to ask if they had slept together. They had. Laura had mixed emotions but she let the need to be part of Peter’s life and lifestyle prevail. She spent the night with him, and many nights after that one.

Dating down..an email from Rocker Boy’s Mom

I hope you enjoyed yesterday’s blog, which touched on love, money and what I find two people really need to have in common.  Stemming from that story, I happened upon and old email from Rocker Boy’s Mom in the aftermath of our relationship.  I thought that you might find it interesting/amusing.  The final straw in our relationship was an evening that he decided to read my emails. The breach of privacy coupled with our lack of potential as a couple put and end to the relationship.  It was the last toddler-like episode I could manage.  Take a gander at the correspondence; it provides a unique glimpse into what I was really tolerating in my life at the time…

 —–Original Message—–

From: Rocker Boy’s Mom

Sent: Wednesday, Wednesday, a long time ago

To: MB

Subject: Disbelief and Sadness

Dear MB,

Are you O.K.?  Between what happened with you and Rocker Boy, and the health crisis of your grandmother, this past weekend must have been just awful for you.  I ‘ll keep your grandmother , and your family in my prayers, at this difficult time.  I am absolutely in shock about you and Rocker Boy breaking up.  I really do love you like another daughter, and to tell you the truth, I am so upset, I even cried.  

Maybe right now you both should take a break from living together, but to completely stop seeing each other, knowing that there is a great deal of love between you, would be a shame.  You know,  

MB, Rocker Boy is very hurt, as I am sure that you are too.  You guys have a long, loving history between you, isn’t that worth fighting for?  Try and put yourself in Rocker Boy’s shoes.  I f he didn’t love you, he would not had reacted as he did.  No matter what happened,  you both can get through this.  Rocker Boy does not know I am  writing this e- mail. Please e-mail me back.  I am truly  ; (

Love,

Rocker Boy’s Mom

—–Original Message—–

From: MB

Sent: Wednesday, a long time ago

To: Rocker Boy’s Mom

Subject: RE: Disbelief and Sadness

Hi Rocker Boy’s Mom,

I am glad you emailed me because I wanted to thank you and Rocker Boy’s Dad for always being nice to me and treating me like a part of your family.  I will never forget your love and generosity. 

As far as the relationship with Rocker Boy goes, I am not sure that I will be able to forgive him this time.  He accused me of cheating on him (with a guy who is gay) and read my personal emails with his friend Dork Nugget.  They twisted my words and made it seem like I was cheating when I really had just made some good friends (which was the purpose of me doing the play in the first place).  Dork Nugget encouraged this thinking because Dork Nugget is unhappy about his recently failed relationship.  Misery loves company and Dork Nugget wanted a friend to be in the same boat.  Rocker Boy actually fell for this despite the fact that the emails clearly state that NOTHING romantic was going on.

When I came home and saw that he took things from the apartment that I paid for, like the couch pillows and the hanging mirror, I was appalled.  I am sure that you know that I have been beyond generous to Rocker Boy and always contributed to the things in our home.  For him to steal from me when he owes me $721.95 is inexcusable.  I paid off some of his credit card debt during the end of February (totaling $821.95) and after repaying me $100 he stopped the reimbursement. In addition, he did not pay the last month’s rent. So, you would think that he would leave some of our joint possessions behind, knowing that he was still greatly in debt to me. 

Also, I am not sure if you know but he wrote a horrible message to me on the bathroom mirror.  My father was with me when I found it and he was shocked and upset to say the least.  Especially, since he knows that what Rocker Boy was alleging was not true. How would you feel if someone wrote that about Mandy or took things that belonged to her when he owed her hundreds of dollars? My Dad cannot except that someone would do something so hateful and cruel to someone that they supposedly love.

I just think that he stooped too low this time.  By moving out, taking my things and exploiting my generosity, he has crossed the line and proven to me that he is not mature enough to handle our relationship, let alone a marriage.  He disgraced me with his truly dishonorable actions.

Although I love you and Rocker Boy’s Dad deeply and could never thank you enough for all your support, I do not have it in my heart to look past Rocker Boy’s irrational actions and hurtful behavior.  I am glad that I got the opportunity to tell you what happened from my perspective.  I wish only the best for him in the future but I know now that the future does not include me.

I hope someday you can understand why I feel the way I feel.  I do not want to hurt your feelings in anyway; I have only respect and love for you.

Best,

MB

I never heard back from Rocker Boy’s Mom on that email.  I guess she got the hint.  So ends my preaching on love and money for the time being. I hope you were able to take something away from the story. However, isn’t this a great segue into relationships and family?  Stay tuned my friends. The next installment is a doozie.  

PS.  Grandmom ended up being ok.

Dating Down..you really can’t “fix” him.

My good friend once said to me, “A man should be able to match what you bring to the table.”  I did not want to hear the advice because it was directed towards my situation.  It was the summer of 2005 and I was living in DC.  There was a band showcase in town and I attended.  Boom, like a lightening bold from the sky I was knock on my booty by one of the hottest me I had ever seen.  A lead singer, no less…and the lust bug instantly blinded me.  Fast forward two months later… my sexy Rocker Boy turned out to be an unemployed living and living with his Mama.  At age twenty-eight, he was still a sophomore at the local community college.  Sad to say…he put his community college tuition on a credit card!  I kid you not.  Debit up to his eyeballs and this is after he had previously filed for bankruptcy. 

Rocker Boy’s status and place in life did not bother me at the time.  My prior relationship was with someone who was always trying to “fix” me so I think that I was paying that attitude forward.  I could “fix” Rocker Boy by helping him get a respectable job while being loving and supportive of his musical dreams.  In the beginning, Rocker Boy also respected my place in life.  I was young and successful living independently in a big city.  He found my life style glamorous and loved being a part of it.  We were infatuated with each other’s differences and that along with physical attraction fueled the relationship.

As you might expect the honeymoon phase did not last long.  After four month of dating, Rocker Boy started to talk marriage.  It was then that I asked myself, “What does he have to offer me?”  Sure, he was entertaining person but he did not have the means to build a life with me.  I pushed that idea out of my mind and deemed love the greater good; we continued our romance.  As life went on and our social circle intermingled, Rocker Boy started to feel out of place.  At a dinner party, he did not know which wine was the Cabernet…the red or the white.  He constantly felt embarrassed and I could not see that to understand why he was not having fun.  It angered me when he would pull me into aside and demand that we leave outings with my friends.  Rocker boy was hurt because he not have the capacity to keep up with the dinner conversation and I resented missing social situations I enjoyed.

On the other hand, Rocker Boy came to expect the finer things in life.  He wanted me to afford him the same occasional luxuries I would gift myself.  One night he craved a steak dinner.  We were going out with another couple, one a teacher and one a student who simply could not afford the $50 a plate establishment he recommended.  They suggested Italian much to his distain.  Rocker Boy literally refused to order and eventually stomped out of the establishment.  This toddler-like episode was one of many.  The irony is that I was the one who would foot the bill for dinner that night, so who was he to demand expensive fare?  Situations like this made me resentful and I deemed him ungrateful.  He thought that I lorded the money over him and used it to control his nights out.  In the end, it drove a wedge between us.

I hate to admit it but my friend was right…your significant other has to be your equal in many ways.  If one person carries the other financially from the start of the relationship the resentment is only going to build.  Maybe you don’t need the same level of education, but the intelligence level should match for conversation sake.  A pretty face is only going to intrigue in the short term and as much as you may connect on a superficial level, you will never make a good team.  Find someone on your level and do not settle.  Take it from me and Rocker Boy…you cannot afford it.