If you know me in real life, you probably remember my ex-girlfriend, Bethany.
Everybody loved Bethany and they were quite shocked when I dumped her. My friends all thought I was crazy. They asked me, over and over, what could have possibly been wrong with her. She was smart and funny and pretty not-bad-looking.
But no matter how drunk they got me, I never told a soul why I did it.
I will be expecting some letters of apology.
A few years ago, we were living together. I was “between jobs” and had a lot of free time, so while she was at work, I would go through her shit. Well, one day, I was sneaking around in her underwear/marijuana stash drawer and I hit the goddam jackpot.
That’s right. I found her diary!
So I crack this thing open looking for stuff to humiliate her with and to possibly find out if she cheated on me so that I, in turn, would get a freebie with the LA comedy nerd groupie of my choice. I’m flipping through it and it’s mostly short, boring stuff about some people at work she hates and what she does to their computers when they are at lunch (I told you she was pretty awesome), but towards the beginning, I find some gold.
As I’m reading, one thing I notice is I’m hardly in it!
There was this brief entry:
February 14, 2002. Eric bought me a present.
A present? That wasn’t “a present”, that was a $400 iPod, bitch!
That was the only entry for a whole six month period! One line. 5 words.
So, as I was saying, I had to go back a ways to find anything good. Apparently she’s had the same diary since she was a kid. She’s kinda frugal and I think her brief entries were to maximize its use and prevent her from having to spend a whole six dollars on a new one.
Now, we’ve been dating for over a year at this point and I figured I knew Bethany pretty well, so I was a little taken aback when I came across this one, seemingly out of left field:
January 20, 1990. Dear Diary, words can’t express the anger I feel right now. I went back and removed any prior mention of Tom and my former love for him! I hate that asshole! I hate him! Hate him! Hate him!!!
Tom? Who the fuck is Tom? She never mentioned a Tom to me before. At this point, I’m pretty excited about the prospect of teasing her about her junior high boyfriend who dumped her. So I keep reading.
I hope that him and that fat whore rot in hell! I hope they get in a drunk driving accident and kill a bunch of handicapped kids, but they manage to live so that everybody in the world hates them and they lose all their money!
Whoa! Hell hath no fury, am I right? Right? Right?? Bah, you don’t deserve me!
I can’t believe he actually went and married that stupid c***! [Yes, she censored herself in her own diary.] After all I’ve done for him! All the letters! Not to mention the naked pictures!
Whoa, naked pictures? She was like ten years old when she wrote this! This is getting creepy. She’s sending naked pictures to a guy who was old enough to get married? At this point, I’m contemplating wiping my prints off of it and stuffing it back in the drawer, just so I’m not called up at this dude’s child pornography trial.
Then there was what appeared to be hundreds of little marks that indented into the paper, as if she just repeatedly stabbed the diary with her pen.
So I looked closely at the beginning of the diary and sure enough, there were pages ripped out. I thumbed back past that entry about “Tom” to see if I could find anything else about him, that’s when I stumbled across this:
April 18, 1994. Dear Diary, the nightmare is over. She filed for divorce. It’s over. I’m never going to write him again, but knowing that at least they’re not together brings me some peace. I am genuinely happy for him. I feel I’ve grown that much and matured to the point where I can distance myself from the past to the point where I can allow myself to be happy for him. This thing with Arnold that he’s doing is supposed to be a big hit, so, we’ll see. I think this will be the last time I write about him. I think it’s time to move on and now that I’m in a good place, I think I can. Maybe one day when I’m in Hollywood, too, I’ll be able to meet him at a party or something and talk to him and tell him about my girlhood crush and we can laugh about it. That would be nice. I think part of me will always love him and I’m okay with that now.
Do you get it? Did you connect the dots??
It’s Tom Arnold! Tom Fucking Arnold! My girlfriend was in love with Tom Arnold and sent him naked pictures when she was ten!
I couldn’t keep dating her, could I? I mean, this is too much. It’s too far. Tom Arnold??
I literally felt sick. I think I would feel better if I had found pictures of her making out with my dad or something. I mean, c’mon! Tom Arnold???
I had to do the right thing, so I broke it off that minute, over text message. I changed the locks and put her shit outside the front door. I never saw her again. It’s not easy to sleep with a girl you used to love banging on your door, calling you and leaving sobbing, tear-filled messages begging you to tell her what she did wrong. But I managed, somehow.
So that’s the story. I’ve always assumed a lot of you have really held this against me and I hope that now you understand and feel like shit for saying anything bad about me, because there isn’t a single one of you who can come forward, look me in the face and say you wouldn’t have done the same thing!