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blog: Close the freezer door on self-pity

Mary Burd
Vail CO, Colorado

Life on my own is not so bad, I think.

I’m going to the gym, working out, walking to work, cooking up a storm on my days off. I actually passed up a glass of red wine when it was offered yesterday, and I’m not even buying any Ben and Jerry’s.

Sure, I stood there at the grocery store and looked at all those pretty containers lined up on the freezer shelf. I opened the freezer door and looked at them some more. I may be guilty of caressing a container, but seeing as how there’s no proof one way or another, let’s just say I closed the freezer door on self pity and walked away.

My good karma self control seems to have been rewarded: I got a steal on two packs of organic chicken (50 percent off), a pack of pork chops and two packs of hamburger meat (30 percent off).

“I think I cleaned out your clearance meat department back there.” I comment cheerfully to the cashier.

“Oh, heh-heh, I guess this means you have a boyfriend.” he says.

How is it that my love life is now the topic of casual conversation with the grocery store clerk? All I wanted was a good deal on some protein.

“I have a freezer.” I’m not even nice about it.

“Oh, I just assumed a beautiful woman like you would have a boyfriend.”

“Nope.” I don’t bother with the fake smile.

He eyes me suspiciously, like I’ve suddenly sprouted chest hair out the front of my shirt. I can almost see the next question forming:

“Are you a lesbian?” but it doesn’t come out. Maybe he just figured out it’s none of his business. Guessing from experience, probably not.

“I’m kind of picky.” I offer, but the accusing eye-balling doesn’t stop.

Is it socially unacceptable to cry in the grocery store line? Because apparently I have gone from replacing affection with food, to replacing it with a freezer.

If this story gets any more pathetic, I may just have to stop writing about it due to utter humiliation.

Just in case anyone else is planning on asking the following common social trivia:

No, I am not married, and have never been married.

No, I am not and have never been pregnant, i.e., I do NOT have any kids.

I DO NOT have a boyfriend.

As to why I am single, that’s really not my fault. I shower daily.

Ok, that’s not always true. It really depends on the day, and the temperature. But I did just go to the dentist and she told me I had great dental hygiene and gum health. So I can’t be that repulsive.

But maybe, just maybe, I am single because I want to be.

Not in an “I want to be alone forever” kind of way. Or even an “I want to sample all of the flavors before choosing one” way. (Although that might have been true in the recent past.) It’s more like an “I’m over it” kind of way.

What exactly is “it”?

It is putting effort into a relationship with someone I really like who doesn’t really want to put the same effort back. Is it hanging out with guys I really have nothing in common with besides we go to the same bars and like kissing?

It is desperately wanting someone who can party and laugh and ride but also discuss things like Middle Eastern politics, and Pablo Neruda’s poetry — but ending up making out and watching Entourage instead.

Not that I didn’t initiate the making out, but you know what I mean.

Or maybe you don’t. I don’t know.

I do know that I can take care of myself, even if it involves staring longingly into the rows of Ben and Jerry’s on the freezer shelf at the grocery store and then walking away without buying any.

And I’m pretty sure I could be dating someone if I wanted to. It’s just that after ending up with below- average too many times, I won’t even settle for average.

Contact Mary at Ma_ha-ria@hotmail.com


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