She asked if I wanted to ring in the new year with her — an oh-Jesus invitation that made all the bells chime in the wrong way.
I mean, it was nothing personal — she's a nice-enough person — but ringing in the new year is not something you do with a fist-bumping bud unless you're both at a huge party and there are plenty of libations and other unmentionables to pass the time. I'm a rank sentimentalist who thinks of New Year's Eve as clinking glasses, kisses exchanged at midnight, and hopes for the future with the person I want to spend the next year with. This was not that person.
So I fumbled and stumbled and said no, and she said, "Why not? I'm single. You're single. I saw it on Facebook."
Yeah, well, there are plenty of things on Facebook that bear no resemblance to reality, but whateva. The truth is big and messy, a hotel full of rooms both grand and skeezy, and no one really needs to look behind the closed doors to Room 237 because everyone has secrets.
So I executed what seemed like a brilliant idea — I took to Facebook and changed my status to being in a relationship. It's Sunday morning, I figure, and maybe this person will see it on the feed and have an aha moment.
Yeah. Sharp move, dumb ass.
It takes maybe 20 minutes for 40-plus people to like the status. Several leave comments. I get texts from several friends wondering what the hell is going on. A person that I'm kinda-sorta seeing, but not really, pokes me: "Who are you in a relationship with?"
So I try to explain what's going on, a task made more difficult because a) she's in her own relationship, and 2) she's out of town and c) all the nuances of conversation are lost in the language of texting. See, this woman asked me blah blah blah and I decided blah blah blah and ...
"You could have just said 'no,'" is the reply. Followed by the dreaded unsmiling emoticon.
I delete the status. Later I ask someone whose opinion I trust whether I did the right thing by posting in the first place.
"On the stupid scale of one to 10, this was about a nine," is the answer.
Duly noted. Relationship status: it's complicated.