Tuesday, February 3, 2009

The Ballad of PissBoy and Marie

I'd like to tell you a little story. It's a story that, for the most part, we've all been through. It's a story of love and loss; making love and making mistakes. The events are real. Only the names have been changed to protect the identities of the heartbroken.

There once was a man named PissBoy. He was a romantic. He's had his heart stomped on an innumerable number of times, but swore to himself to forge on, undaunted into the arms of love and life. He spent most of his day chugging through work, taking many 'breaks' throughout the day to surf the best damn movie review site he's ever known. One day, through the magic of random encounters on the Internet, someone contacted him. Her name was Marie. Out of tens of thousands of people she just happened to notice him. PissBoy and Marie exchanged IM's for a few minutes. Then for a few minutes longer. Then, just to make sure they'd said everything they wanted to say....just a couple minutes longer than that. When it was all said and done, nearly an entire workday had been spent chatting over IM. They weren't on opposite sides of the country. They weren't in different cities. They weren't miles apart. She was sitting in front of her work terminal a mere 125 yards from him in the same company complex. To say the workday was wasted on conversation would be a disservice to the hypnotic powers of conversation with Marie. Marie was funny, smart, quick, brutally cute, and fascinating. PissBoy started to look forward to work more to talk to her than he did to actually work, as did Marie. But really, who looks forward to work for their work?

After a few days of captivating exchanges, "happenstance" meetings in the halls, "bumping into her" in the cafe, Marie found a way to suggest PissBoy owed her a ride on his motorcycle. It was a great idea; something he'd been wanting to do since she first contacted him. The plan was set. Saturday evening, he'd swing by her place and take her for a ride on his bike. She'd never been on one before, so Marie was definitely looking forward to it. PissBoy made sure his bike was cleaned, gassed, and ready to go. He even made it a point to be early; "Early" rarely being a word used to describe him. After some general explanations of the ride and how to sit and how not to lean, etc. etc., they were off. Nice country back roads with gentle turns and beautiful scenery were the order for the day. A special stop off at PissBoy's favorite park was the highlight for the ride. Towering oak and pine trees, fragrant cherry blossom, gentle streams flowing into reflecting pools, and a slow walk provided the mood. With exception of a few keys parts of the motorcycle ride where PissBoy was tingling over the sensation of her arms wrapped around his waist, silence never occurred. They had so much in common. Halloween, music, singing, the arts. She was pleasantly surprised to learn that PissBoy was at one time a ballroom dance instructor for Arthur Murray, and even more pleasantly surprised when he pulled her into a rumba in the middle of the park. Patrick Swayze had nothing on PissBoy. (They both dance and wear no underwear.) Valley Garden Park was his Kellerman's and Marie was his Baby.

After the park, dinner was the destination. There was a quaint local restaurant serving good drinks and ravioli in a vodka sauce. The only moments without conversation occurred when PissBoy or Marie excused themselves from the table for a moment. Other than that, PissBoy hung on her every syllable, noticing over and over again the glimmer in her eyes, her infectious laugh, and this little dimple just below where the corner of her mouth meets her cheek. The dimple made him ache with adoration. It was just one of many things that made him unable to look away.

Just as dinner ended, a light drizzle began to fall. Luckily, Marie lived right around the corner. A quick flick of the bike's key, a whiff of exhaust, and a few stop signs later, they were plopped on her couch enjoying her homemade ice cream sandwich cake. The dessert was almost as sweet as she. PissBoy met the cutest dog in the world named Rocky Balboa. After an hour or so more of talking after dessert, PissBoy made his goodbye. A soft hug was given and he made his exit. But PissBoy was unable to say goodbye to Marie without asking, "Was this officially a date Cuz if it was, that would be super."

"I don't think it was because I asked you," she replied.

"Well then I'd like to do it again soon."

As PissBoy drove away there was only one word to describe the day.


PissBoy made an excuse to stop by the next day to show her pictures of Eagles training camp. Partially because she was an Eagles fan, mostly just to see her face. It's amazing what a classic, pin-up like beauty can do to melt the heart of a born-again cynic.

The following Monday at work, PissBoy decided to forgo every leaf of paperwork in front of him until he had her agreeing to dinner for Wednesday night. He would cook. She would provide the kitchen and the wine.

Wednesday came, what seemed like 2 weeks later. The menu for the occasion was Prosciutto-wrapped Chicken with a rosemary crust, snapped Green Beans, and sweet buttered stuffing. Marie stood by in the kitchen keeping PissBoy company as he prepared the meal. A couple glasses of wine later, with meal complete, they adjourned to the couch...but not before PissBoy washed the dishes. Conversation was light, but there was a tension. PissBoy couldn't take his eyes off of Marie. She was magnetic. Every part of him was screaming to taste her kiss. So he went for it. And it was everything he thought it would be. Soft, supple lips and soft skin that he could spend hours exploring. Her hair was like the satin edging on a comfy blanket. It was only their first kiss, but to PissBoy, it felt like home.

Minutes gave way to hours. The living room gave way to the dining room, the dining room to the kitchen. Soft kisses at times, passionate kisses pressed against a doorway the next. PissBoy and Marie threw in the towel a little after midnight. It was two hours past bed time for any hope of a serviceable function the following day at work and PissBoy couldn't have been happier. The rub here was that Marie was leaving for the beach the next afternoon, which sucked. Neither one of them wanted anything other than to be with each other.

It was a great week. A motorcycle ride with a beautiful woman, VIP access to Eagles training camp, and a kiss that turned PissBoy's heart into a jackhammer.


Marie left for the beach. It was a yearly "Girl's Week" tradition. The cool thing was, the communication was still constant. One hundred miles separated them, and PissBoy and Marie were at the forefront of each other's minds. Fifty or so text messages and a couple phone calls a day. Picture mail. It was too much. Tuesday evening, PissBoy and Marie managed to talk on the phone for a bit. They wanted nothing more than to kiss at every moment. Randomly, PissBoy said, "I'll see you in 2 hours." This took Marie by surprise for sure. Without any notice and acting purely on desire, PissBoy jumped into his car and was speeding southward.

He arrived at her shore house a little after 1AM. But he felt fresh as a spring shower knowing he was about to see Marie. And then...there she was, Betty Page-like beckoning him with her eyes. She only invited him in for a moment so she could grab her jacket. Then they hopped in the car to steal away to a secluded beach. And hilarity ensued...

Beach #1 - populated with quite a few people.
Beach #2 - Sand flees that were biting like frenzied sharks.
Beach #3 - Busted by the local PD because it closes at Midnight.

But it didn't matter. He was happy to be there, and she was ecstatic. She had these amazing red shoes on that he couldn't help but notice that made her even more statuesque. They gave up their mission of secluding romance in the sand, and adjourned back to her beach house. They spent the wee hours in each other's arms, curled up on a lounge chair out on the balcony. Five AM rolled in and he had to go home, but he had one last trick up his sleeve. Two days later, he was back down to see her, only this time he was able to stay the night. A comatose patient in the hospital never slept as soundly as PissBoy did that overnight with Marie. Wrapping his arms around her was like being able to hold on to his favorite song, to hug poetry.

And that's how it went. They were inseparable. They were periodic moments of disagreement, but Marie is a strong person and was able to be the bigger of the two and bring any disagreement to an end. It's a story that everyone has been through. We all know those feelings. And we all love them.

But...all was not sunshine and roses. PissBoy began taking Marie for granted. Something at some point spooked him and the PissBoy that was started to fade. The real PissBoy began hiding behind this cloak of insecurity and excuses. He would flip disagreements around on her and throw them back in her face. He didn't listen. And after awhile, he started to not show his affection. This happens to a lot of people and they deal with it or just bury it inside. Marie did. And PissBoy was oblivious to the damage he was causing. But there was a skeleton in his closet he was ashamed to even think about, let alone discuss.

During a moment of selfishness, of pure unadulterated greed, PissBoy didn't think about Marie. he didn't think about what she meant to him. He didn't consider the repercussions. He slept with another woman. He violated everything that had been built between them for a few awkward moments of meaningless nothing. He said things that he didn't mean. He did things he should never have done. He talked about things that shouldn't have been talked about. And PissBoy never told her.

Months passed. PissBoy was being eaten alive by his actions. He couldn't look at Marie anymore without feeling the purity of absolute shame for his betrayal. For him, the end seemed inevitable. One way or another, be it through the grapevine, or from his very own lips, Marie was going to find out. And she did.

And not from PissBoy.

The other half of the cheating equation managed to contact Marie via email. And revealed all. PissBoy was never clear on all the details because the details didn't matter to him. If he had been with another woman 10 times or only once, it would have been the same. If he hadn't have been draped in self-doubt and emotional apprehension, he never would have said things to the girl that he said. How he wasn't sure about Marie. How he wasn't sure if he'd made a mistake by not being with the other girl. Those were his words at one point. It was at a moment of weakness and vulnerability, and he felt manipulated. But none of it mattered to him. he did what he did, and it was absolutely killing him. The fucked up part is, while dealing with how and when to tell Marie what happened, the idea of how he felt came to mind. He realized that while he was dealing with inner turmoil that had yet to be unleashed upon a beautiful, innocent woman, that he was, in fact, falling in love with her. As the weeks of the holidays into the new year progressed, he always thought about Marie. he knew he was fucking it all up with his behavior, and he was trying in the lamest and most desperate ways possible to repair that growing gap. But there was still that night. That act of selfishness.

How can you hurt the person you love?
How can you lie to the person you love?

It was a double-edged sword, and because of his cowardice, PissBoy ended up swallowing on side, and having the other jammed up his arse. The person he loved now hated him. The truth he wanted to reveal, had become a lie. A kept secret that he never revealed.

And now PissBoy is paying the price. But that price is minimal. It's only his heart. Marie was the one suffering. He had broken her. He had torn her apart from the inside out. He had violated everything important to her. He had brought the sickening taste of a history too close to home into her daily life.

And he has never been more sorry. He's been to see her. He's begged for forgiveness. He's begged for a second chance. And all he can do is hope for one. There was something, that up until minutes before she found out what had happened, Marie had loved about him. It still has to be there. As a born-again cynic, PissBoy has never gotten a second chance. He's not saying he deserves one right now, but all he can do is ask. It doesn't matter to him how long it takes. Everyone knows what it's like to fuck up worse that can be explained. Everyone knows what it means to feel pain. And everyone knows the feeling of ultimate longing.

Begging forgiveness, PissBoy had had the most difficult conversation in the world, easier than any of the simple arguments they had had previously. Marie unloaded on PissBoy. She told him everything she could remember that made her suffer. And he accepted it. And he does accept it. Rarely do people ever get a chance to atone for their sins. It's hard for most. It's hard for someone like Marie to put herself at risk of more pain. It's hard for most people to realize what they did wrong and make a difference because of it. But it's clear to PissBoy. Everything he did is clear in his mind. It's not a question of change. It's a question of forgetting. It's a question of knowing what he did. It's a question of undoing the change that took place in him, that inexplicably made him act the way he did. But that isn't enough.

It is up to Marie. It is up to Marie to believe in him again. It is up to Marie to decide if he's worth it. It's up to Marie to let her guard down and trust him again. It is a hard road. It's a road littered with casualties, the most important being Marie. It's also littered with her friends; friends that believed in PissBoy. Best friends.

A friend will call Marie to make sure she's okay. Best friends stand beside her catching her tears on their shoulders. It's not only Marie that PissBoy needs. He owes her friends apologies. Apologies for his betrayal. Apologies for hurting someone they love. Apologies for violating their faith. Pissboy also owes them thanks; the purest of thanks for cleaning up his mess. Without them, Marie may not even be functioning right now.

The hurt that PissBoy feels is extreme. But it's not out of concern for himself. It's because he can't believe what he did. To know how Marie is suffering. That he could ever in the span of his now meaningless life do something so vile to the woman he loves unconditionally.

For awhile, PissBoy tasted heaven. Every day was the best day. Every day she smiled. Every day he saw her dimple. Every day was WOW. Every day was a song. Every night was a poem. Every breath was a breeze. That's heaven. And without her...

...I'm in hell.

Here's to hope and second chances.


  1. PB, my friend, all hope is not lost. I, too, have recently been to this very, very dark place, and have emerged from the other side....into a light brighter and more beautiful than I ever imagined possible. Let Marie know....I hope she reads this. Any woman reading this couldn't help but want to run to you, to talk to you, to try to figure out what went wrong and make it right.

    My Pajiba friends stood by me when I was on the precipice....we will stand by you.

  2. Whoa...

    I really hope she reads this and tries to understand. There is no way a woman can read this and not try to reach out to you. Especially if she had feelings for you. My bet is that she still has them.

    P.S. I was an Arthur Murray instructor too. Full bronze, baby...

  3. ha! I quit just before my silver test, which I SO would have nailed. Thanks for the vote of confidence though you guys.

  4. You need to tell her everything you just told us. She needs to know this.

    Best of luck to you, I hope it works out in the end.

  5. Dear PissBoy-

    You repeated quite a few times that it's up to Marie, now. I believe it's a little bit more complicated than that. There is Marie IS and there is Marie DOES. And if Marie IS truly loved you for who you are, then Marie DOES will come around, even if it takes some time. I don't believe one stops loving another because of hurt or betrayal, but rather pulls themselves away for healing and introspection. Be patient; no one is Superman, and it is often the case that being away from someone hurts more than anything they can actually do to you.

    P.S. I was cheated on by the love of my life. A decade later, the scars are still there. So is he. And to be honest, I hope he's around for a few decades more, even if it means an extra scar or two.

  6. Oh gosh, that made me cry. I went through a sort of similar situation and unfortunately was not forgiven, but Marie sounds like she's a sweet gal and hopefully she'll have a big enough heart to try to get past this. This blog is a good start to winning her back :)

  7. Oh, man... What else can I say? Hang in there. Keep trying. I'll hope for the best.

    I really can't find words... But thank you for sharing this with us. Big Chilean hug for you.

  8. ...and just so everyone knows. Marie has read this. I sent her the link yesterday when i wrote it.

  9. Wow. Heartbreaking. There is nothing worse than betrayal. I truly hope you are able to come through this. There is never weakness in forgiveness.

  10. John, my dad cheated on my mom, and though the situation was different (with 3 kids involved and 12 years of marriage at the time) I can see the similarities of both of your pain. My dad was inconsolably remorseful, and my mother deeply hurt. If it doesn't work out, it's not because she doesn't love you, it's that the chasm created by the betrayal hurts too much to take another chance. And you're a strong guy who will get through it. Everyone does, despite the time it may take.

    I think in the end it comes to whether the person who was cheated on can decide to live through that hurt and try to make it work. And I think it's absolutely possible.

  11. Wow...just..wow.

    I am so sorry and I hope things work out for you. Just keep hoping.

  12. This was beautifully written and I'm not gonna' lie, made me tear up at work. Don't ever fucking do that again! =)

    I have my fingers crossed for you. For both of you.

  13. Things will work out. I've been hurt and betrayed very badly before. The hardest part is putting yourself back out there and possibly be hurt all over again. Trust isn't an easy thing to gain and it sure as hell isn't easy to get back. Just give it time.

    Beautifully written. I wish you and Marie the very best of luck, come what may.

  14. **lets out breath I didn't know I'd been holding for the last minute**

    That was extraordinary. Not often you see a guy turn himself inside out, rip out his beating heart, put it on the table and *dissect* it unflinchingly.

    Having said that: um. Let the poor woman process. That was a LOT to throw at her and it may be as excruciatingly painful for her to read as it obviously was for you to write.

    I won't wish you good luck, but I will salute you, sir.

  15. Whoa. This is too agonizingly familiar.

    You made your choice, PB, and now Marie has to make hers. Your and Marie's relationship has been changed forever; whatever relationship may emerge, it won't -- it can't -- be the one that existed before.

    This post reads like an elegy to what was, and in my experience there is significant danger in trying to recapture an unrecoverable past. That doesn't by itself make a future with Marie not worth pursuing, but you are both different people now than you were then (inwardly, as well as to one another).

    I have repeated certain patterns of behavior in relationships in my life which suggest that I'm an untrustworthy partner, and I realize that I've invested far more time in trying to demonstrate my worthiness (selfishly and falsely) than I have in actually being worthy (i.e., selflessly committed). There isn't enough information in what you wrote for me to know whether my experience might be relevant to you or not, but I'll toss it out as a strawman anyhow. I know for my part that I've had to question what I want, why I want it, and what I'm willing to endure to get it AND to keep it. Then, in the intolerable solitude, I've waited for another to make their choice...which waiting, somewhat counterintuitively, became easier once I got (and stayed!) sober.

  16. So...this is a nice piece of writing, but why in the world would you post it online? I don't know you, or Marie. I'm only here because I'm a regular lurker on a movie website. This whole situation isn't my business, but here I am commenting on it anyway, just like the other 15 or so people who commented before me. If I were Marie, I'd be pretty pissed off that an account of my breakup was online for all the world to see -- with all of Pissboy's mistakes glossed over with pretty language, and with a bunch of Pissboy-supportive comments from people who don't know the situation attached at the bottom. I'd feel misrepresented, and put on the spot by the public nature of all this. I'd feel like you were trying to turn me into the bad guy, even though you were the one who screwed up in the first place. I don't know what sort of person she actually is, so maybe I'm totally off the mark, but I have never once seen a relationship problem made better by dragging unrelated people into it.

    Your letter's been up for five days now, so this is coming a bit late, but you should seriously consider taking it down.

  17. Thanks for the feedback nothayama, but I need to leave it up. Yes, I know the writing is stylized in a way...but I fail to see where I try to make Marie out to be the bad guy. I don't know? maybe I just keep skipping over the couple sentences that I wrote that say how bad of a person she is and how much she sucks. This was never intended to be anything more than me pouring myself out about the most shameful thing I have ever done in my entire life and how much i hurt her. And yes...to try to explain how much I hurt knowing what i did to her. That's the only downside to reading someone's emotions and thoughts. You can put the inflections and emotion where your head puts it...not where it was intially intended.

    As far as "Pissboy-supportive comments"...not a single one says anything about how I'm in the right anywhere. The support seems more to be genuine empathy and understanding of what I was trying to express. Haven't you ever been in a situation where you hurt and were physically ill because of how much regret you carried? Or haven't you ever had something blow up in your face that you would do anything for to get a second chance? If not...then that may be why you're not getting me.

    But yeah...thanks for reading it and at least being nice enough to take the time to express to me your opinion. While ultimately, on my page, your opinion doesn't matter, (please refer to my blog title's header...in case you missed it) I will fight til the death for your right to express it. Good day to you.

  18. I think you're misunderstanding me. I don't think you shouldn't express yourself to Marie. I wouldn't change a word in what you give to her. I just don't understand why you're expressing yourself to the internet at large.

    The only reason I responded to your blog at all is because I've seen (and been through myself) situations like this where a personal fight or problem gets brought out into the open by one party, and in my experience it's always gone really poorly. Of the worst two instances, one ended in a restraining order, and the other with an angry boyfriend threatening to break into my friend's workplace with a baseball bat. When people's private business gets made public without their consent, they tend to get defensive really quickly, or lash out more seriously than they might have otherwise. I've seen it happen way too many times. That was the only intent of my original post: to point out that making this a public letter rather than a private one might end up working against you.

    From the perspective of the intended reader alone, your story sounds like a guy who messed up, feels terrible, and desperately wants a second chance. But when you put it online, it seems like there's an ulterior motive, and it's easy to see how someone who's already angry with you could read bad things into it. I mean, there must be a reason you wanted other people to read it. Are you trying to garner sympathy by making yourself sound like a nice guy? Get your mutual friends on your side? Put pressure on her to get back together? There are a lot of ways to interpret it where you end up looking like a jerk.

    And just to clarify, I'm not saying any of that is your actual intent. It's just not a very big leap to make, particularly by someone who has no reason to give you the benefit of the doubt.

    I know my writing comes off as cold and brusque -- that's just how I write, but I can see how it's not the best for this topic. But I was trying to warn you, not belittle your pain. I saw things that I've been through in Marie's situation, and to me it looked like you were setting yourself up to have her dismiss you in anger instead of think about the situation calmly.

    No need to defend my right to say anything on your personal blog -- I really don't care if you ignore and delete both of my posts. I just thought this was a situation where my viewpoint could be useful, but if that isn't the case, just get rid of them.

    I do hope that this can come to some kind of conclusion where you both end up happy. And I'm sorry if you thought I was attacking you -- that really wasn't the plan. I hope this version is clearer.

  19. I can see clearly now where your thoughts were. No worries though. i can totally see how certain things like this can cause concern, and your example makes it ultra valid. I really did this because of Pajiba. People who read Pajiba, freindly or not, are typically pretty strong, opinionated people and i was more or less just throwing myself out there. I was honestly expecting a lot worse than what i got. I suppose I got what seem like empathetic comments because all of us have been on one side of my current situation at one time or another, and hate or love the person on the other side...you always want to get it back.

    Speaking about how Marie might react, I wrote this because I thought I knew her well enough. And it turns out I did. But for all I know she could have read it and never wanted to speak to me or see me again. But now, we are trying together to work through this....not because i wrote this but because I got the balls to go to her. And I do feel pain. And it's not the pain of getting caught or the pain of she and I at one time, being definitely over. (which...don't get me wrong...hurt like hell) But what hurt the worst was knowing what i did to her, and it still hurts. And I really don't want that hurt to go away. i couldn't live with myself if I forget how I made her feel.

    I in no way thought you were trying to belittle my pain or brush it aside. I really do appreciate your comments and candor. I hope you come back. i won't be able to update this thing as frequently as i like because i have a relationship to focus on and help repair...even if it means we ultimately end up apart. Thanks 'yama.