Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Hard lessons of life: Blogging for Books

This Months' Blogging for Books Entry:

For this month's Blogging for Books, write about a time when you either: 1) learned a harsh life lesson, got punk'd, or simply had someone make an ass of you;2) gained a spectacular new insight into life; or3) decided to educate yourself about something.

The following story probably encompasses all three, because I got schooled for sure and made a fool of and certainly learned my lessons, albeit quite slowly.

I was 19, a sophomore in college, the epitome of young and carefree. Still enjoying the newfound freedom being away from parental guidance gives. Little did I know that this year would forever shape my relationships with men. My roommate and I both worked at a country bar and decided to go hang out on a Tuesday night since we were both off and what better place to hang out than where you work (read: cheap drinks). Long story short, I met a guy. He was cute, he was charming, he seemed perfect. That should have been my first red flag.

We started dating and moved along quite quickly. Pretty soon he was staying at my place a lot. Of course, his living situation was the couch at a friends' one bedroom apartment where 5 other guys were living as well. Second red flag, duh!

One weekend we decided to make the trip up to north Texas to meet the 'rents (his, not mine). I had to work, but we decided to leave late after work, so our drive from Austin began around 11 PM one night. Not sure why now, but we had borrowed one of his buddies cars to take with us and had to clean it out because it was full of beer cans. On the drive we talked and talked and it was during this trip that I saw just a glimpse into his shady past. He told me about warrants for traffic violations and minor other things as well as a little check fraud thrown in for fun. BIG RED FLAG WAVING WILDLY. RUN THE OTHER DIRECTION. But he's cute and did I mention he's cute so I'll just overlook that little bit of law breaking.

About 4 AM we are about an hour from his parents place when it happens. The lights, red and blue behind us. He is driving, and oh, by the way, license suspended. No biggie, right. The short of it. Cop. Window. License and Registration. Run license and registration. Step out of the vehicle. Search the vehicle, find beer can. Handcuffs (him, not me). Crying (me, not him).

At this point, I am still a young, scared female whose heart beats out of her chest every time she's sees a cop, not to mention getting pulled over. I am freaking the hell out. The officers won't let me go with them to the jail, because duh there is no where for me to hang out. We are in the middle of no where and I have to now drive to a town I've never been to, call people I have never met and tell them that their son is in jail. (Little did I know that they were used to this) But I was not used to this.

I'll spare you the details of the meeting the parents, the trailer, the missing teeth, the (and I am so not being a snob here) below my level of living that I was accustomed to. We discuss how we (I) will get him out of jail. He calls crying, "get me out of here." CRYING. (Say it with me, SUCKER) Cost of his freedom? $2000.00. You read that right, two, zero, zero, zero dollars. I don't have that kind of money. His parents sure don't have that kind of money. I call my best friend and she loans it to me. His father assures me that it will all get paid back, every cent, no problem, they will figure out a way to pay it back, we're good for it, blah, blah, blah, lies. We deal with the transfer of the money and after 24 hours of no sleep, spring him from the pokey.

Skip forward two weeks. I'm waiting at work, for Mr. Wonderful-not-so-much to pick me up from work. No call, can't find him. Finally get a call from one of his friends. Bet you can't guess where he is? JAIL, again. He calls me CRYING again. Bet you can't guess what I did. If you guessed, left him there, well, that would be the logical thing to do, but no, $800 later and his truck impounded (where it would stay forever), we were back home. One big happy, stupid, couple.

Life went on for awhile without him getting his butt thrown in jail and it was all hunky dory while his best friend and other friends all moved in with us and then his sister moved in with us and I raised her and bought her clothes and blah, blah, stupid, blah, sucker, blah. One night we had a party at our house, his idea, not mine and he disappeared. He was gone all night and the next day. I had learned by now that I would call the jails first, then the hospitals. This was the night I found out he was cheating on me. This was the night that naiveté slapped me in the face, called me its b&$ch and said, honey get OUT! So I did.

A couple months later my roommate and I ran into him and the hussy he was cheating on me with in a bar that we frequented. My best friend worked for a lawyer at this time and we had spent months trying to get the money back that he owed us for his jail stays. (We never did see any money) He had recently received a phone call from one of the attorneys regarding the money. He told the lawyer that I was paying all the money back. LIAR. (That is actually what did end up happening, but it took me 10 years to pay back and lost me 4 years of a friendship) So when I saw him there with the hussy, I walked up and asked him what kind of man can't pay back his own debts. The hussy stuck her hand in my face and pushed me. After recovering from my initial shock, I lunged at her, I was going to beat the crap out of this girl. I've never been known to be a fighter, but I will defend myself and I do have a temper if riled up enough. Unfortunately my roommate had gone to get her boyfriend and he showed up just in time to pull me back. I was pissed. Roommate was pissed. Bouncers were called, things got ugly. We knew the head of security so my roommate was trying to talk to him and he was trying to calm her down and she shoved him. It was innocent really, but the other bouncers didn't know that she knew him. We were thrown out of the club. The club we were regulars at. We made it halfway home before we spun that car around and headed back. This was our turf and I was not about to let him or her get away with kicking me out of my own turf. When we got to the door we had to agree to behave in order to be let back in. We did, but only because Spineless and Hussy had left.

I won;t go into the details of the verbal abuse I took during this relationship and the person that I became while with him. Let's just say I'm not proud of who I was during this time. I'm not proud of things I did during this time. I'm not proud of the stupid mistakes that I made or how stupid I felt for letting someone like this get the better of me. This man was a con artist and a coward and probably still is. God help any woman that comes across this man and God help any woman who actually marries him. I know that people can change, and maybe he has, but I doubt it. These were hard lessons and ones that have shaped every relationship since then. I can tell you that I have never let someone treat me like that since and I never will.

My next boyfriend after this one got a nice little lecture when we started getting serious. It was pretty simple, you get thrown in jail, don't call me because I won't be the one to bail you out.

Moral(s) of the story: If it looks like a loser, walks like a loser and talks like a loser, it probably is. If he gets his butt thrown in jail once, you might bail him out. If he gets his butt thrown in jail twice, LEAVE HIS BUTT THERE.

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