Friendly warnings on September 7, 1998…
Dear Breakup Girl,
Okay, this is the last (hopefully) installment in the Jo R. Heavy Opera Company’s production of “I love you, Come here; I hate you, Go away,” otherwise known as the Ring Cycle of Numbing Depression and Futility.
Quick recap: I met him 7 years ago; I was attached when he was single, then he got married when my relationship broke up; he claims his marriage is dreadful, and he’s been “on the verge of divorce” for 5 years now (I’ve never bought this, since he’s still married and they’ve had 2 kids). He and I have flirted heavily ever since we met, but never had sex. Two years ago he moved to Chicago; he started writing to me shortly after, always with the flirtation thing going on. In February he told me his marriage was definitely *over*, and I had said, “I’m so sorry but YIPPEE — when can I visit?” He then lapsed into complete silence for 3 months, at the end of which I wrote you to ask what I should do.
You put my name on the Breakuplist — although there was never an “up” to be broken in this case — and I wrote to him and told him that since he wasn’t interested, we should scotch all erotic impluses. After this brief recess, our amiable “what I did today” newsy e-mails continued; after all, we’ve been friends for years.
Last week, though, after I mentioned that I’m booked to give conference papers in Florida and Ann Arbor this fall, he asked if he could come. I promptly whipped back that he could *not* come, since when I’d suggested the same sort of thing he’d run like a hare, and told him that it was rude and unkind, when he didn’t want to sleep with me, to pretend that he did. He apologized abjectly and declared that we should simply forget about flirting, since he “valued our friendship so highly.”