The Cheat Sheet

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Sometimes I wish we had blueprints as to how other people work.  So much time is wasted fighting and miss-communicating.  I’m trying to figure out who I am and what I need as far as compatibility in a partner.  This is my cheat sheet for you.  To explain my vices and my neurosis and all the little ticks that comprise me as a human being:

– It’s important to me that you think I’m smart.  I will use a grandiose agglomeration of  superfluous vocabulary until you tell me I’m smart.

– I’m jealous.  Like jealous of your dentist because he gets to see you smile.  And don’t even get me started on your gynecologist.

– I hate every single one of your ex-boyfriends and anybody who has seen you naked. Please don’t put me face to face with them because you guys are “still friends”  The world is full of friends.  Guys you’ve fucked are not your friends.  Also, I’m willing to Jettison any “still friends” I may have clinging about, for you.

– I live in my imagination.  It’s a beautiful place that will spring forth poetry and rainbows and all that awesome stuff when things are good.  I will also hang myself in the darkest corner of my mind if left to my own devices.  If I don’t hear from you for a few days I assume the worst: terrorists, rapists, or somehow you’ve gotten amnesia and have forgotten all about me.  Usually all three.

– I’m needy, like a small anxious dog that shakes and tears up the furniture when you go out to buy groceries.  Like that small dog, I will run in circles and jump on you the moment you come home.  Strangely enough, to everybody but my immediate family I can come across as distant and aloof.  If I’ve allowed this level of neurosis to spill out into our lives where I need you, like a clingy barnacle on your ass, it means I truly trust you and you’re an important part of my life.

– I listen.  I’m always listening, even when you think I’m not.  That ramen place you mentioned in passing you wanted to try, I’ll take you to eat on our next date night.  That thing you said you thought was cool when we were browsing at the mall, I’ll buy it for you for your birthday months later.  But I listen to everything.  So things like your weaknesses or your fears, there’s a good chance I will use it against you in a fight somewhere down the road.  My mouth is always a hair trigger and my brain is the slow arm of a train stop; The caution bells and whistles are going off, but my mouth has already fired the shot across the tracks and there’s no taking it back.

– You can always diffuse my anger with a hug.  Or showing me some boob.  You can end just about any fight this way.

– If I go storming out the door, I’m really just hoping you’ll chase me and do the hug thing.  Or the boob thing.  Maybe not the boob thing if we’re outside.

– I get grumpy when I’m hungry.  My mood can often be medicated with small amounts of food.  Maybe always carry snacks in your purse?  I’ll even eat raisins if I’m hungry enough.

– My formative high school years were shaped by “emo” music.  To this day I still think of myself as a poet or a writer, or someone with a creative muse.  Accordingly, my heart will break loudly and violently.  I’m a martyr with a megaphone.  Do not be alarmed.

– I can make you fall in love with my words.  I will also cut you to the bitter bone with those same words, spoken in reverse.  I’m trying to figure out how to do just the one without the other, but they seem to be two sides to the same coin.

– I’m allowed to talk crap about my family.  You’re not allowed to talk crap about my family.

– Having your parents like me, is a very close second to how much you like me.  I’ve grown up all my life with an extended family that got along, mainly because my parents were both proactive in keeping their respective in-laws happy.  I’m very close to my parents, but I never complain to them about relationships because it will color the way they see their daughter-in-law.  It matters so much to me that your parents like me.  Don’t make me choose between their opinion of me, and your opinion of me.  I can beg for your forgiveness– I can’t beg for theirs.

– When I’m happy, I see the world in hues and shades and soft edges.  When we fight, or when I feel threatened, my world shifts to stark black and white distinctions.  If you quit me, if you quit us– you become my enemy.  I think this stems from feeling powerless as a child, and my need to divide my world into “good” and “bad” people.    Everybody inherently has both good and evil within them, but my mind will quickly forget one side or the other in order to create some emotional distance.

– I hate space.  Not in the astronomical or astrological sense, but in the measure of distance and lack of closeness.  I used to ignore my ex for weeks on end when I was angry with her.  I realize now that was quite possibly one of the cruelest things I could do; to leave her in limbo just waiting for a response from me.  I will never do that to you.

– I’ve dated a full roster of beautiful and brilliant women.  Don’t feel threatened by them, it just means you’re in good company and I have good taste.  I’ve made numerous foolhardy mistakes with all of them, but to me it’s not history– but practice.  Those girls were the hours of training until I was truly deserving enough to meet you.

– If I’m showing you this list, it means I like you.  It means I see a future with you.  It means I want you to know me, and I want you to fit me.  I’ll do my best to fit you too.

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