By the time 2003 had rolled around, I’d met someone who was now living with me in the small condo my parents had bought me in 2002 so that I would not have to leave Louisville to go home during the summer breaks between college semesters. It was an accident, really, the way all of that had come about – my boyfriend had had nowhere else to go, he moved in temporarily, and then we’d decided he’d stay. It was my first experience with “housing the homeless” and at that point in my life, I wasn’t great at telling people to leave when they’d overstayed their welcome. At any rate, 1.0 and I had been friends throughout this time… civil, friendly even, sometimes talking on the phone, but not like it had been when we were dating. I was seeing someone else. Over him, really, but I’d still wanted to keep my friend. After all, I hadn’t put in four years of work for absolutely nothing – to lose him now would be, at least to me, right then, a failure.
In 2003, 1.0 decided to visit Louisville again. It would be easier this time… I had a condo. There would be no need to put him in a hotel. Mr. Ex, as I have said, was living with me then (this was before we were married). I had stopped going to school by this time and while I worked during the days at the vet clinic, I had the evenings free – many of which 1.0 and I would still be able to spend alone so that we could talk. I had no money. He had no money. We could not really afford to do a whole lot. But we could sit around and watch stuff on television.
Mr. Ex and I were sharing an air mattress on my living room floor. I had a bed. He never wanted to sleep in it… come to think of it, looking back on it, I find that to be ridiculous now, but it was what it was then. 1.0 would have the bed, in the bedroom. We picked him up from the airport, we went back to the house, he set up shop in there, and the three of us shared this absurdly small 500 square foot living space for four days.
Mr. Ex did not like 1.0. I did not understand why this was… at least not at first. 1.0 did not let on that he wanted anything, at least at first, and the men were civil to each other. Mr. Ex went to work, 1.0 and I walked up and down Bardstown Road. I showed him the clinic where I worked, he saw the Hemingway kittens that were up for adoption in the clinic. I wasn’t old enough to drink, so we didn’t do that, but he did seem to enjoy the atmosphere there at least.
On that Saturday, though, things changed. I had the television on as usual. I did not get cable, but there was something mindless on television anyway, and I had it on for background noise. I was lying on the air mattress, watching it, as I normally did. 1.0 came into the room, asked what I was watching, sat on the mattress to watch it with me and eventually reclined. I paid him no attention… if he wanted to be there that was fine… but when he started stroking my leg lightly, I was horrified. Remember… I don’t cheat. I don’t break that rule even for someone that I consider to be one of my best friends. I jumped up, said I had to go to the bathroom, and when I’d come out, I’d decided that he and I were going to go to the casino to see Mr. Ex. I was no longer comfortable being in the house alone with him anymore. At least there we’d be in public… and my boyfriend would be there.
When we arrived at the casino, we found the Legends restaurant and got a table there. 1.0 decided to check out the boat (the casinos in Indiana are on Riverboats). I was not old enough to board (you don’t have to be 21 to be in the food areas, but you do have to be 21 to be in the gaming areas) and so I agreed when he left me behind. Hours passed. Literally hours. Legends closed (and on a Saturday, they closed at 1 a.m.). By this point, I had been in the casino, alone, waiting for 1.0’s ass for a solid four hours. He hadn’t bothered to check on me, he did not have a cell phone (even if he had, I did not get a signal there). Mr. Ex got off work, and I sent him onto the boat to find him… 1.0 assured him that he’d be out in a few minutes… but minutes turned to more hours and when he finally came out, it was 3 a.m. I was beyond pissed. I said little to him as I drove him back to my condo and was glad to see the back of him on the Sunday when he left.
We did not speak again until after my divorce was final in 2006. By this point, I was “seeing” Buttface, but I was glad that 1.0 and I had gotten back in contact again. I hadn’t forgotten what he had done, but catching up after all of that time was nice. I had no desire to see him face to face again… I was busy, driving up and down the road to Columbus, trying to put my life back in order, going to school, working an internship on top of the promotions and the modeling I was doing. And yet, one night, he called and said he felt like going on vacation. I didn’t know what he meant by that, so I encouraged it… I mean seriously… who doesn’t want to take a vacation now and then? It was only after he kept pressing and told me he wanted to come see Louisville again that I hesitated.
I had nowhere to put him, and I told him that. I did not want him in my bed… I was sleeping with someone else. I also voiced the concern about his newfound marijuana habit… I did not want that stuff in my house. I was living on the top floor of someone’s house… they were renting it to me, cheaply, and I did not want this under their roof (and I wouldn’t have wanted it under mine, either). We fought over it. He blocked me. I was fine with that… I carried on about my business, went through the Buttface saga, moved to Florida, found a good job, got fairly comfortable.
In 2014, though, in March, we got back in contact again. Granted, I’m more open minded now than I was then (though I still don’t use pot), and our conversations were very touch-and-go from the beginning. We never chatted for very long, and never about anything important. That was fine with me. I was, again, involved with someone else. Waiting for Botboy to return from this deployment, having promised him that I’d do so, took precedence. And anyway, even if I hadn’t been, I don’t know that I would have been interested in 1.0… after everything that had passed between us, knowing what I knew, knowing how pushy he was, I knew it wasn’t what I was looking for. I may have been okay with it… passive about it, even… back in 2001. But I’m not nineteen anymore. I know what I want, and that is NOT what I want.
That said, people change. And against my better judgment, I decided to give him the chance to prove that he had.
Which is where we pick up in this crazy-ass shit show of mine.