Going, Going, Gone

It’s Saturday morning and I’m excited about the day because I have two appointments lined up. One is the rescheduled meeting with the newspaper publisher and the other is the casting call.

I go about my plans of making copies of the pictures I choose to take with me to the casting call while talking on the phone with JB. I have become used to talking to JB a couple of times a day. Lately all we do is argue and it’s getting on my nerves. For us to be professional communicators it seems that we have problems because we often misunderstand each other’s intentions. He reminds me of my close friends in a lot of ways. Sometimes when I talk to him I can SWEAR I’m talking to Tamara because he’s rational like she is. Sometimes I feel like I’m talking to Anna when he’s goofy. Sometimes I feel like I’m talking to Kim when he’s supportive of my dreams and sometimes I feel like I’m talking to Mimi when he takes the time to talk out choices that I have to make and help me make a decision.

But sometimes, he reminds me of Dell.

And sometimes he reminds me of my Baby Daddy.

And that bothers me.

I think the fact that we are not in the same city has caused us to get to know each other without all the hype behind being sexual partners. He encourages me to evaluate our relationship and decide whether or not it’s something that I want to be in. I’ve learned so much from him that even if we end up like we are on the friend tip, I will be forever changed.

I’ve learned that getting wrapped up in someone off of the first encounter is not a good idea. It takes TIME to get to know who a person is and you can’t just jump into a relationship feet first without testing the waters of friendship. That was my mistake so many times. I always meet men and then just decide that I want to be with them before they even decide if they want to be with me and before I can get to know them well enough to see if their bad habits/faults are things that I can deal with. With these relationships it was the mere challenge of seeing if I can get a man to like me more than the actual MAN himself that kept me trying so hard.

That’s what happened with Dell.

I’ve also learned that besides affection, effort is important to me. You can TELL me how great I am all day but I have heard all that plenty of times before. I want to see some ACTION behind your words. SHOW me you like me. Do something to let me know. Be sweet. Yes, Tell me what I want to hear. You don’t have to give me what I want ALL the time, but at least sometimes..give. Be nice to me. Say nice things. Be lovey dovey with me. I want that. Why can’t you tell me I’m pretty and beautiful and you can’t wait to be with me again?

I never hear those things from men. All I get is, ‘You need to work on this area or that area’ or ‘You have a lot of growing to do’.

Sometimes you have to give the other person what they want, especially if it doesn’t cost much to do it. All I want is a man to be sweet to me and consider my needs too. If I need something and you can take care of it, why not take care of it for me? I’d do it for you. Make my happiness a priority. Why not?

JB is not really like that right now and maybe he’ll never be like that. I’m okay with him not becoming the boyfriend. I’m okay with letting go if need be. I just don’t want to compromise like I did with Dell. I tortured myself with Dell. He wouldnt give me affection even though I asked over and over again. He still refused. There’s nothing wrong with walking away when you are not getting what you want.

Don’t allow anyone to tell you that you are selfish or conceited when you ask for what you want. YOUR happiness is important too. If they deny you simple pleasures like affection or compliments just because they don’t want to give it, then you can decide just as plainly that you won’t give them any of your time.

I’m learning.

Thanks to JB.

So after we go through our rough patch we end up okay but I know that things don’t feel the same anymore. I wish we could go back to how things were the first week when we were all crazy for each other but I know we can’t.

When I’m done talking to him I go home and get dressed. I call the publisher but she’s not in her office so I head over to the casting call.

When I get there I knock on the door to a house and no one answers. I wait about five minutes and no one comes so I walk back to my car. A Spanish man pulls up behind my car and as he steps out of his vehicle I ask him, “Are you here for the casting call?”

“Hi Ms. Tee,” he said.

I froze.

He must have noticed the look on my face because he laughed and said, “Hi, I’m Joe. You wrote me telling me that you would be here.”

Long story, short, the casting call was canceled.

Blah. He gave me his card and told me to call him again next week.

I drove back home after stopping to refill my gas tank.

I took a long nap and woke up just in time to call JB and chat with him until he went into an event for work. JB’s job is so cool. He gets to attend all of the music events in Atlanta for free and get to know all of the local artists. Man..I always wanted to be an editor and look at him- living my dream! That’s kinda why I admire him. He’s patient. He sat making relatively peanuts at the magazine where we met. He waited it out and got the experience and now he’s moved on to better things.

I wish I could be that rational but I can’t. I don’t have time to make peanuts if I want my kids to come back with me. I can’t take care of my kids on that kind of salary.

I chatted with Ruby well into the night. Well…at least until her boyfriend Donald came home. She logged off quickly and I took another nap, hoping to wake up in time to catch JB before he went to sleep because he asked me to call him.

When 12:30 am hit I stepped into the back patio of the Professor’s house so that I could get a signal and I checked my texts and voice messages and found that JB had called and texted me a couple of sweet messages indicating that he was done and wanted some of my time.

I called him back quickly, shivering int he cold night air.

“Baby, would you puhlease consider calling me on the house phone because I really want to talk to you but I just…don’t want to sit outside in my car tonight. For one night. Please call my house phone.”

“Are you sure about that?” he asked hesitantly.

“Yes. The Professor is sleeping and I promise to answer on the first ring. Even if it disturbs him, he should be able to go back to sleep and I’ll apologize tomorrow and explain that it was too cold to go outside and I really wanted to talk.”

JB sighed and paused. Then he gave in. “Ok, Tee. I’ll call in two minutes. Be by the phone.”

When the phone rang I grabbed it quickly but the Professor still picked up and mumbled, “hello.”

“Sorry Professor,” I said. “It’s for me.”

He hung up and for the first time I relaxed in my bed in the warmth of my room and chatted on the phone with my friend JB. It felt so good! I was so happy! JB kept laughing at me as I recited poetry for him and read him some of my favorite entries from my blog.

Before I knew it, I could hear the click click of the phone line being picked up again. It’s the Professor. He doesn’t say anything. He just hangs up after a couple of seconds. A glance at the clock tells me it’s 1:30 am. What is he doing up? He never uses the phone. In fact, since I have been living with him the phone has rang maybe ONCE the entire time. No one ever calls or comes to visit him.

“JB, I guess I need to get off of his phone,” I say and JB is silent for a moment. “I still want to talk to you though. I’m gonna get dressed and go out to my car. Is that okay? Do you still feel like talking?”

“Ofcourse… Call me back when you get settled.”

I happily get dressed in my favorite Gator sweatshirt, sweat pants and sneakers. I run upstairs and grab a capri sun and honey bun from my stash in the pantry and go outside to sit in the parking lot so I can use my cell phone. It’s 2:30 in the morning in Atlanta and I’m glad JB cares enough to stay up and keep me company.

As soon as I get cozy in my car and JB’s deep chocolate, sexy ass voice is in my ear I see the garage door open and the Professor pops his head out.

“JB, you won’t believe this but the Professor is motioning for me to come back into the house.”

“Well, just calm down. Remember to be polite you are his guest. Call me back when you’re done talking.”

I walk over to the Professor and he has his arms crossed. “We need to talk NOW!” he says angrily.

I check my attitude and follow him into the house. Calm down Tee. This dude is doing you a favor by letting you stay with him. Be nice. Calm. Don’t flip.

As soon as I close the door behind me he says, “You’ve been smoking in my house!”

Huh?

I lower my voice so that there will be a noticeable difference between my tone and his. “No, I haven’t. I would never disrespect your house like that?”

“YES you have!” he asserts.

I look at him blankly. “No, I have not.”

“I come downstairs and I smell smoke all upstairs and everywhere. I HATE SMOKE! I told you from day one that there will be no smoking inside or outside of my home!”

“And I didn’t do it.” I shrug my shoulders.

“And why did you have my phone ringing so late at night, tieing up my phone line for an HOUR?! YES! I picked it up just to check and see if you were still on it and you were. I caught you!”

I’m shocked. “It’s the middle of the night. I really wanted to talk to my friend. You know I don’t have any friends here and you know they can’t call my cell phone in here. It’s cold outside. I wanted to talk to my friend inside the house. No one has ever even called here for me before. Think about it. When has the phone rang for me? My Mama doesn’t even have this number. Why are you acting like this?”

I make sure that I am speaking in slow even tones. Almost angelic because if I don’t make a concious effort I know that I will start going off on this man.

He doesn’t care.

“You need to find somewhere else to live!” he announces.

Huh?

“Excuse me?”

“You need to find somewhere else to live because you disrespected me by smoking in my house and you tieing up my phone line.”

“Ok, That’s fine. I will work on it. Thanks Professor,” I say and turn around to walk back outside to finish my call with JB.

His voice stops me cold. “ANd why are you always running in and out of my house all the time?”

I turn around. “Professor, you don’t want me to use your house phone and my cell phone doesn’t work in your house. How else am I supposed to talk to my friends?”

“Why don’t you talk to them during the day?!” he yells from the top of the stairwell.

“Because…” I pause. “I have minutes to consider during the day. After 9pm it’s free. So I go outside to talk to my friends and sit in my car. You know I don’t have any friends here. I need to talk to them.”

“You just need to find someplace else to live,” he tells me and dissappears around the corner.

I go outside and call JB. After I tell him what happens he says, “Ok. you’re a good writer. You express yourself well on paper. Would you please consider writing him a letter in the morning apologizing again and asking him to allow you to stay for a couple more weeks? You don’t have to beg or kiss his ass, just reason with him.”

I raise my eyebrow.

This man told me to leave his house! He called me a liar to my face!

“Ok JB,” I tell him calmly. “I will consider it.”

“Ok, now be nice and go to bed. Call me in the morning ok?”

“Ok, JB.”

I sigh and lock up my car. I walk back into the house and go to my room.

I consider what JB has said. Could I really do that?

I want to go to sleep but I can’t bring myself to lie down. How can I sleep in this man’s house after he talked ot me like that? I can’t sleep. I can’t.

Fuck it.

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I stand up and walk into my closet. I began pulling clothes off of my hangers and bagging them up. In a half hour almost all of my stuff is back in my car and the Professor is standing there watching me.

He dissappears upstairs and yells down, “Don’t forget your food.” He packs up my food for me and I tell him to throw away the refrigerated stuff and I’ll keep the canned stuff.

When I walk out the door he doesn’t say a word until after I am done packing everything up.

“You smoked in my house,” he accused me again. This time, he looked down at the ground as he said it.

“No I didn’t. You are supposed to be able to evaluate criminal minds and you should be able to tell whether or not I’m lieing. I am NOT a liar! I did not smoke in your house!”

“You want some advice?” he asks me as I’m opening the driver side door.

“No thanks,” I say politely.

“Well, I’ll give it to you anyway. Go back to Florida where you have some support. You have no business out here by yourself like this.”

“Thanks Professor,” I say politely and close my door.

I turn on my wind shield wipers to wipe away the frost on the windshield.

Oh Lord. Where am I going to go?

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