When my friend asked me to be in her wedding party, I said,
“Ahhhhh, uhhhhh, hmmmmm…” Don’t get me wrong, I was happy to celebrate with her, but I wasn’t sure how her husband-to-be would respond. Randy was his name and we didn’t exactly click. I was water. He was an oil spill that needed remediation. Randy and I were not always estranged. When I moved to South Korea for a teaching position, Randy was the first person to greet me when I arrived. He invited me out to meet the other teachers and we had a few beers. When I think of Randy, a few qualifiers came to mind. Feral. Erratic. Jovial. Hmm, handle this one with care, I thought.
Later that week, when I met Randy’s girlfriend, Jade, she asked me what everyone else was thinking.
“I like boys,” I responded. Randy bought us both a glass of wine and Jade and I danced the night away.
My friendship with Jade grew tight. She wasn’t just a Seoul friend; she was a soul friend. Soon my emotional connection to Jade became a stitch in her relationship with Randy. Not a suture that holds things together. More of a cramp in your side from running on a full stomach.
I was a slow build-up of acid for Randy. One day, Jade and I got kicked out of the country. All of a sudden, Jade and I were back in Canada. Randy was still in Korea. Randy was still in Korea letting Sherri give him a blowjob. When Jade found out, she was furious. Randy was a groveling mess and Jade was sippin’ lemonade thinkin’ I don’t wanna lose my pride, but I’ma fuck me up a bitch; but also, True love never has to hide. I’ll trade your broken wings for mine [Beyonce].
I told Jade:
“If you never want to talk to Randy again, I will support you. If you want to try and work things out with Randy, I will support you.” Jade chose to try and work things out with Randy. From that moment on, Randy would not look me in the eye. He knew I knew he fucked up.
One day when a group of us were swimming and tossing a beach ball around, Randy accused me of looking at him the wrong way. In his mind, the only right way would have been for me to be blindfolded. Sometimes Randy would cry to Jade when I wasn’t around, fearful that I was covertly planning the destruction of their relationship. He even accused me of wanting to sleep with Jade. Jade did have the nicest breasts I’d ever seen (at the time), but to me they were dormant-milk-secreting-glandular-organs (a mouthful, to be sure) and Randy was an idiot.
Now, I have to explain to you that this teary-eyed-man was not a meek individual. He was actually a volatile mixed-martial arts fighter with absolutely no fear for his own life. Arguments between Randy and Jade were becoming too common. I decided to have an adult conversation with Randy. Unfortunately it was a lot of childish with no gambino. Did you know Donald Glover entered his name into the Wu-Tang Name Generator and the result was Childish Gambino? Randy’s name is, ironically, Respected Contender. Mine is Insane Madman. What’s your name?
Anyway, I think Wu-Tang got our names mixed up.
“Randy.” Randy kicked his ball against the garage door.
“Randy.” Randy kicked his ball against the garage door.
“Randy.” Randy kicked his ball harder against the garage door.
I could see this was going to be difficult. I pushed on, trying to explain that I was not secretly conspiring to annihilate him.
“Liar!” he yelled. “You’re a liar and nobody can see through your disguise, but me. You can fool everybody else, but I know you are evil!” I have always wanted to be a vigilante with a disguise, but the facade he saw in his mind was outrageous. I walked away as Randy continued to smash his ball harder and harder against the garage door.
Now that you understand my hesitation to join Jade’s wedding party, I will continue on with the festivities. I said yes – for Jade. I was a bridesman. I stood on Jade’s side. Even my pocket square was teal to match the Maid of Honour’s dress. It was my intention to blend in. I didn’t want to draw any undue attention to myself in case Randy lost his shit. I didn’t even give a speech.
Enter the photographer. The photographer told Randy to take pointers from me for the photo shoot. Crap. And then his mother and sisters began dancing with me. Crap. And then Jade’s mother said, with tears in her eyes, that Jade was so lucky to have a friend like me. CRAP! I decided to keep my distance from Randy and Jade just to be on the safe side. I even found a cute boy to dance with. But then I found out he was seventeen and curious. Crap.
After the wedding, we returned to Randy and Jade’s house. Soon I heard screaming coming from the washroom. The Maid of Honour immediately grabbed me and pulled me into the guestroom. We sat down on the bed and began to discuss how the timing for this argument was rather inappropriate. Suddenly the door flew open and Randy threw himself at me. We bounced off the bed and my face smashed into the wall. He began ripping at my shirt as I was collecting my senses, blood streaming down my face. Somebody managed to pull him off me. It was probably time for me to leave.
I was walking down the street to where my friend had parked her car. Out of nowhere, Randy slammed into me from behind, knocking me to my knees; I heard them crack as they hit the asphalt. His hands were around my neck, his fingers pressing into my throat. I tried to shake him off, but his favourite pastime was practicing choke-holds and his hands were like vice grips. It took two other men to separate his hands from my neck. If he had a gun, he would have shot me.
The next day, Jade pleaded for my silence. I was disgusted. I reported the incident to the police, disregarding her wishes. Everyone went to the post-wedding party the next day and pretended that I did not exist. Jade cried in the washroom, pretending that she was hung-over. I learned a valuable lesson.
I vowed never to get that close to another woman again. Relationships are a pie chart of physical, emotional, friend and soul connections. Nobody’s slices are perfectly even; we all have different needs. Also, giving away too much of your pie to someone else can be bad for the health of your relationship. Jade offered me a large slice of her emotions and left her partner ravenous. It takes years and years to understand what proportions keep us the most satiated. We need to communicate and find moderation, not letting each other become too hungry or too full.