Her first name was a misspelled abbreviation of an actual first name, and she hung out with neo-nazis before discovering her birth father bore not only a Spanish surname, but also the DNA to back it up.

Every time she returned from trips home to San Diego, I tasted the methamphetamine on her lips when I kissed her hello. (It's like licking the contacts on a 9-volt battery rolled in crushed aspirin.) She wore rings on every finger. She slept around. She was loud and uncouth. I found her irresistible.

I don't know why I had such poor taste in women in my 20s, but I suspect it has something to do with my mom not allowing me to eat Kraft macaroni and cheese as a child. It gave me a taste for the forbidden.

We dated, if you want to call it that, intermittently for two years. That mostly involved eating Banquet TV dinners and drinking Pabst Blue Ribbon on the couch until an argument erupted about her "ex" boyfriend. There was also, of course, the occasional screaming fight on my mom's front porch. (Mom is still mad.)

We broke up, and she started working as a "cocktail waitress" at a strip joint. One night, I received a tearful phone call. She and two coworkers had appeared on "The Jerry Springer Show" as a lesbian love triangle. It was all fake, but she played the home wrecker. The crowd, disgusted by her behavior, chanted "fat whore, fat whore, fat whore" until she left the stage.


"Well, you realize you were on 'Jerry Springer,' don't you?" I said, somewhat incredulously.

"I knew you wouldn't understand."

We got back together. We broke up again.

She showed up at my house late one night. Apparently, two of her California friends showed up needing a place to hide out because they were wanted in connection to a series of thefts involving ATM machines that had been wrenched from the pavement with chains hooked up to a stolen truck. She needed a break.

Against my better judgement, I allowed her in. She pulled up her hair to reveal the back of her head was clean shaven with a tattoo her friends had given her with a homemade tattoo gun. God knows what else they gave her.

"It's a slang word for San Diego," she said.

"Uh, yeah, that's a racist slur."

"No it's not. Stop fooling around."

"Uh, I'm not."

We got back together. We broke up again.

Then a friend died. I'm a little unclear on which one, but for the purposes of this story, I truly want to believe it was the friend who died in a knife fight over frozen steaks pilfered from her refrigerator during a house party.

She called.

"So, I went to the funeral."

"A few weeks ago."

"Well, me and my ex had sex in the bathroom at the funeral parlor and I think I'm pregnant."

"I'm really kind of busy right now."

I swear all of this is true.

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