Small-town living is awesome. You can get anywhere in five minutes—on foot!
You can have a beer with Jake, your UPS man, and sip coffee with Sheila, your banker, down at the corner cafe. And it isn’t weird at all. Everyone is on a first-name basis around here. We don’t have a choice. But still, it’s real nice.
Oh look, there’s Bill on the treadmill at my gym. Our gym. The gym. He’s still avoiding eye contact with me. Really, Bill? It’s been five years. Bill thinks I ruined his life and damaged his children. Sorry about that, Bill. I’m sorry your kids liked me so much, but it just wasn’t a good match. Me and you, I mean. Your kids were awesome. I hope you can get over me one day. I hope their therapy wasn’t too expensive.
Oh look, there’s Phil, the manager at my favorite restaurant. As I chew my cheeseburger, I get to watch the parade of women who come by to flirt with him, but I still come here because it’s the most edible food in town. The only food, really. He was such a good kisser. I sure wish he were ugly.
Oh look, there’s Dill outside on my front porch fixing my railing because, well, he’s my landlady’s go-to guy. He’s also been keeping an eye on the leak in my bathroom ceiling. It’s true, he’s very handy, which is what drew me to him in the first place. Why did I end things? Well, he was starting to get a little clingy. Okay, a lot clingy. Guess how I feel about him having a key to my apartment. My brother-in-law works on the local police force, though, so I sleep okay at night. Usually.
Oh look, there’s Jill in line in front of me at the grocery store. Sweet Jill. With the rock-hard abs, and the poems about sycamore trees, and the beautiful hair. Jill. The gal I thought I had a crush on until I found out she’d dated Bill, slept with Phil, and had once been engaged to Dill.
I’ve heard it said that living in a petri dish of failed romances—like this cramped-up tiny town—is an opportunity to face your issues head-on, grow strong, and deepen the love you have found in whatever form it takes.
Or . . . it might just be time for me to get outta this hellhole, this charming little village of eternal awkward shame.
Read the next Stupid Cupid short story here …