It was really infuriating.
Ann went through her box of tupperwear one more
time. Piled, perfectly nestling, she pulled them apart, matched them up. Yep. no
doubt about it, one missing lid.
Motherfucker. She had packed every box
carefully, gone through every drawer. She had made sure to leave absolutely
nothing at Max's. She had taken her spices, even flour, she had taken any
spoons, forks, even used yogurt containers. She had ripped apart music
collections, she had gone through photos, artwork. Anything she, on any level,
might have brought to the table was in a box, somewhere, in this room. Except
one damn lid. Asshole.
She had felt no reservation and little guilt
gutting the house of everything conceivable imagined as hers. Max had shown
little appreciation for what she had owned and as far as she was concerned he
had no right to it. Leaving behind only his dusty, old, barely antiqued
furniture, a couple of rusted pots and pans and a refrigerator filled with
about 75 condiments she slammed that door.
Renting out an apartment in
the busiest, hippest, noisiest part of town, overpaying for this sleek and
modern loft she had felt a certain righteous glee. She had gone to Ikea. IKEA!
Max would have lost his mind! She bought mid century modern knock offs, left and
right. Cubed, sleek tables and couches and chairs with hidden compartments and
convenient design. She even bought artwork there, which artwork she had always,
secretly, sort of appreciated, and hung it on the walls proudly.
And fuck Helena too. She honestly couldn't believe it.
Helena had been friends. True, not close friends, but friends, nonetheless. She
had hosted Helena, bought her gifts, went out of her way to cook meals and show
up at parties so Max's best friend's fucking wife would not feel left
She didn't think they were having sex. She didn't even
know if she cared. She had, quite frankly, always expected Max might cheat on
her. He was just such a lech. He loved women in an almost fawning fetishistic
way. Not just their bodies, their breasts and legs and feet. But he loved their
clothing and their shoes and their hats and noticed when they cut their
It initially had charmed her, when he appreciated a purse she had
or was even more turned on because she had chosen the right shoes. But it
quickly became infuriating when he'd notice her torn jeans or wonder: are you
really going to wear those pants with that sweater? Are you really wearing
pants? Tonight of all nights.
You'd almost think he was gay. But he most
certainly.was.not. gay. He just...loved women.
He flirted. Shamelessly.
Charmingly. All the women giggled and allowed it. He leered and danced close
with other women. And although she had felt mostly secure in that he did it so
publicly, she also had wondered, from time to time, if he would one day stray,
one day go to far. She had anticipated it, even, had speeches and even
compromises ready. After all, he wasn't the only one a libido, the only one who
But he didn't have female friends. Not close ones. Sure, there
were wives and girlfriends, and sure, they had conversations, but they weren't
close. He wasn't sexist, per se, just disinterested.
Until this shit with
Helena. She had always known, on some level, he liked her just a little too
much. He would quote something she said, or take one of her damn know it all
intellectual platitudes just a little too much to heart. But it wasn't until
they started hanging out, until he started actually listening and talking and
laughing with Helena she truly understood how little Max had listened and talked
and laughed and, honestly, respected her.
And then there was that damn
book. She had recommended that book to him about 5 times and then, so convinced
that it was a book he would love, she had, for some birthday, gone out and found
a wonderful bound version and planted it below his pillow. And he was thrilled!
Couldn't wait to read it, just after he was done with the book he was reading
and then the other one on his list and he didn't want to bring such a nice book
on vacation and then. Well, then, 3 years later she could picture just where
that book was on the shelf when she walked in and found him reading it. Only he
wasn't reading it, he was reading some paperback dog eared moisture damaged
When she noted the book he was excited. Beyond excited. He
started to go on about this and that and how Helena had told him he would really
love this one part she had underlined and how had he never thought to read this
Already crying she had yanked the beautiful, hardbound copy she had
bought him and noted, tightly "I can't imagine when it has been right here, the
whole time" and ran out.
That was the first time she had left. And, of
course, he had apologized and been so sad and promised to do better and to
appreciate her more. But, of course, he really didn't. And so here she sat, in
her wonderful modern clean apartment with a box full of tupperware and a missing
She was in the middle of composing an angry email, stunned once
again at the disposable way he had treated all of her belonging and making it
clear how little she thought of this, when she heard a plaintiff meow from the
Looking down she noticed the cat slowly licking something off the
very tupperwear top she had just been searching for.
She promptly burst