Thanksgiving, final entry

I am so fucked. I am back in L.A. without Michelle because Michelle broke up with me. This whole thing is such a big complicated fucking mess, I don’t even know where to begin. But I’ll try to explain what happened.

Everything was going great. I was getting in good with her parents. We went out Wednesday night and I hit it off with her old friends. We even fooled around in the car before we went back to her parents’ house.

The next day was Thanksgiving. Greg and Quinn showed up around noon. I was helping Michelle’s mom get the food ready. When I met Quinn she seemed normal and nice. But when Greg showed up, he gave me a dirty look and was basically a dick to me from the minute he met me. (Greg is Michelle’s youngest sibling–he’s 22.)

I thought he was acting so weird that I asked Michelle what his deal was and she just said he’s moody. Fine, okay. Not everyone has to like me.

We sat down for dinner at four. The family was catching up with each other. Then the conversation turned to me and I told Quinn and Greg a little about myself. Then in the middle of the dinner, Greg says, “I feel like I already know you.”

I said, “Why’s that?”

He said, “Because I’ve been reading your blog.”

I turned white.

Michelle said, “What blog?”

Look. It’s not like I’ve been keeping it a secret from Michelle. I told her about the project. How I’ve been trying to better myself by talking to strangers. She’s seen me do it a million times. I just never mentioned that I write about it in this blog.

Greg pounced, “You’ve never read his blog? It’s all about you.”

Michelle looked at me with this awful look of betrayal.

Her Dad asked, “What’s this blog about?”

I tried to explain that it wasn’t about Michelle. It was about talking to strangers. But she’s a big part of my life and naturally she’s in it sometimes.

Her mom said to Michelle, “You didn’t know about this?”

At this point Michelle excused herself and went upstairs. I excused myself, too. Then we got into a fight. She said I should have told her. She asked what kinds of things I wrote about her. I said it was nothing bad. That yes, I should have mentioned it but it was no big deal. She said she feels like an idiot in front of her family showing off her new boyfriend only to find out she doesn’t even know he’s writing a secret blog about her behind her back. I said I was sorry. She said she needed to be alone for a while.

I was stuck. No way I was going back downstairs to hang out with the family. So I told them I was going to go for a walk and that I’d be back in a little while.

I walked around the neighborhood for an hour, feeling like someone had punched me in the stomach. During that time, I found out when I got back, Michelle read the blog. The entire thing.

When I got back, she said she needed some time to think about this. I said that I would go back to L.A. She said fine. I said, “We can get past this, can’t we?”

She said, “I don’t know.”

I felt like there was a ray of hope.

Then she said, “I don’t know if I can trust you again. I think we should spend some time apart.”

I said okay. I packed my stuff, said goodbye to her family, and went back home.

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17 thoughts on “Thanksgiving, final entry”

  1. Wow, brutal. Sorry, dude, my jaw dropped reading that. I hope this doesn’t leave a bad taste in your mouth regarding the entire blog itself. A real piece of shit move on her brother’s part. He doesn’t want to see his sister happy apparently. Hopefully Michelle will see how much she means to you through reading your posts and realize that a seemingly great relationship came of it. Whatever happens, keep your head up.

  2. I’ve been an unfortunate participant in many similar battles with significant others, so the most helpful (I hope) thing I can say, Fletcher, is that what often seems insurmountable in a relationship frequently proves to be nothing. She had no time to think about what she’d read and she was clearly reacting in the moment, urged on by inopportune comments from the family (ain’t that always the way?).

    Rationally (though it’s never clear how much that counts in these situations), you’ve never really written anything bad about her, and–in fact–the whole thing is a paean to Elevator Girl’s Awesomeness. If you get a chance, please point that out (an e-mail, maybe?).

    The only downside I can see is that she’s a bit of an emotional nutbag, which makes the whole situation unpredictable. On the plus side, the last few weeks (months? who can keep track of such things?) of you two being together has seemed pretty damned good, so one would hope she won’t throw it away over some perceived insult that doesn’t actually stand up to even the tiniest amount of scrutiny.

    Are you reading this, Michelle? If you are, get over it and turn your heart back on. THERE’S NOTHING BAD ABOUT YOU IN THIS BLOG. Even those of us (vastly) less enamored of your foibles than Fletcher have come around to liking you quite a bit. Don’t blow your own happiness because you didn’t know about this online tribute to how great you are, and how much you’ve helped Fletcher mature. Heck, we don’t even know what your real name is.

    It’s the ’10s … everybody’s somewhere on the Internet. At least your presence therein is a pretty damned good one.

    Suck it up, call Fletcher (or better yet show up at his office or apartment), and be together again. You don’t have to and shouldn’t apologize, Michelle; just chalk this up to lessons learned and be happy. In today’s world even the most destined couple can founder on the rocks of happenstance and distrust (viz. Kim and Chris), but you should enjoy the ride while you can and not worry about the shoals beneath the breathtaking waves.

  3. I’ve long worried that something like this would happen with one of the girls you end up dating due to the project (I even said something to that effect on the comments for “Everything Happens for a Reason.”) I hope that Michelle forgives you. It’s been pretty clear from almost since you first mentioned her as “Elevator Girl” that she was the person that you really wanted to be with.

    Out of curiosity, and not that it really matters, but did her brother discover the blog in a search to find out more about the person her sister was dating or did he just happen to be a reader who realized the person who he just met was the author of one of his favorite blogs?

  4. Can’t imagine she could read this blog and be upset. It’s obvious to all your readers how much you care about her. Sad she didn’t see that. I hope things work out, though! You two seem great together.

    1. It’s not that I said anything bad. She says it’s a matter of “trust.” I should have told her I was writing things about her, even though they were (almost always) positive. She said it was “creepy.” I’ve tried to callher a bunch of times but she won’t take my call.

  5. I agree with Michelle about it being a matter of trust (not so much on the creepy though). If I were her, I’d be coming up with all sorts of increasingly far-fetched reasons why you wouldn’t tell me about the blog when it seems like such a big part of your life. However, in the past your blog has also given rise to a conversation between some friends and myself about how we’d feel if we found out our significant others had written about us in a blog and the general consensus at the time was flattered/indifferent, as long as there weren’t any graphic details or nasty comments. So what I’m really trying to say here is that I have no idea if her reaction is conventional or not-not that it matters because that’s not what will determine the outcome. Hope it’s just confusion on her part and she comes round though, you seem like a nice guy.

  6. I arrived here doing a google search with “random images” as a theme and found the crayons image, which I liked. I then found myself reading your story and finding it quite compelling. I loved the idea of ‘talking to strangers’, I’m a long standing fan of random acts of kindness too. But now to this final (or latest) entry. What can I say? How do I feel? Yes as a woman I would feel betrayed if I found out the man I live with regularly writes about me without my knowing – especially if he didsn’t write under a pseudo and my family could find out about the blog just by googling his name! For heaven’s sake, your private life is HER private life ! Regardless of whether what you said about M. was nice or not, her brother was able to read about when you first slept with her. How embarrassing is that?

    Regardless of what the outcome here is (I won’t try to guess what will happen next) I hope this serves as a lesson in the proper use of the Internet. There are real people behind the stories told in blogs and they need to be protected. You either should make your blog completely anonymous with no chance of anyone ever finding you out, or make it so open that everyone in your entourage knows about it and can read it freely. Going half-way is a recipe for disaster. As shown.

    Sorry I wasn’t able to be more positive.
    I hope you won’t find me judgemental. I’ve tried to express my feelings as a woman.

    1. I really appreciate your opinion. A lot of people write in and say that they support me and Michelle is a $%&#$ or whatever but I actually think you’re right on this one. It was a mistake. I didn’t want to tell her (for various reasons) but then I let it go to far. Bottom line is it was my fault not hers and I’m going to try to make it right.

  7. Wait a minute … no one’s saying that you’re without fault, or that Michelle’s insane. It’s just that people make mistakes.

    Some mistakes cost people money, or reputation, or other less than desirable consequences … this mistake cost EG barely anything if anything at all. So her brother might’ve read about you sleeping with her … what, you two are 12 and shouldn’t be sleeping together? Her brother’s a priest and doesn’t want to know about it? Please.

    And I understand that “you should’ve told her” “you violated her trust” “she should be able to tell her family what she wants when she wants without them finding out some other way” blahblahblah, but this all comes down to a mistake, and an understandable one at that. If you were in her face and telling her she was wrong and you didn’t do anything and she’s overreacting etc. etc., that would be a different story (though she’d probably like that due to the perpetually baffling female attraction to the biggest dbag move).

    You made a mistake, you admitted it, you’re contrite, and it’s really not that big of a deal. Someone who can’t forgive something like this, no matter how (relatively) soon it’s been since her last painful relationship/break-up, isn’t worth the risk of a long-term relationship.

    I’m thinking she’ll come around after a little more time to think about it. Don’t stop calling, but don’t call too often. We don’t know her well enough to know if she’d go for a Lloyd Dobler boombox outside the house trick (though I guess you’d have to use an iPod and a portable speaker nowadays), but as long as you let her know that you’re not ready to give up, there’s a good possibility that she won’t give up either.

    Did you catch that, Michelle? Don’t give up.

  8. Wow. I’m so sorry to hear this. From reading your blog posts, I can tell that you’re a great guy. I really hope Michelle realizes this and your relationship can move beyond this.

  9. This is painful. I have a slow day at work and I’ve read from January until now without stopping and ugh. Kick to the stomach. I feel for you man… though I did say back when you and Marny were together (yesterday for me) that I was hoping you’d lay more out on the table with your significant other.

    Seriously though… did it ever occur to you to not use anyone’s real name? I know you left out last names, but still… it wouldn’t have been that hard to make it more difficult for someone close to you to connect the dots. That being said, I hope you and Michelle can get past this– I’m rooting for you.

  10. Oh man like the first guy who commented my jaw just literally dropped as I read this! I am so so sorry bro. Hopefully things got better right? Kay gona keep reading then

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