I never know what to do today. Everybody might assume I’m crazy to do what I do, but I also don’t really tell anybody what I do. A few weeks in advance, I start thinking not only about this day, but actually the whole month of December and January.
So, what the heck is today? It’s my ex-ex-ex-ex-ex-ex-girlfriend’s birthday. Every year on this day, I break our silence to wish her a happy birthday and say something generic like, “I hope this one’s even better than the last,” even though I have no idea if it’s been a good 365 or not. Maybe she found a better man. Maybe her fingers were eaten by rabid kangaroos.
I do the same thing with a lot of my exes because a lot of their birthdays fall in this 45-day period. In December, I also wish them a happy Christmas, Hanukah or Satanic Solstice celebration — there were some nasty breakups, so maybe one or two joined murder cults.
My messages stay short and sweet. I’m not trying to waste anybody’s time. If one of these exes wants to chitchat more, I leave it open. If they don’t, no big deal. Of course, I’d like every single girl I’ve loved, casually dated, hooked up with or met only once to tell me that I’m the coolest, funniest, smartest and best-looking guy they’ve ever known, but if I get the silent treatment, I don’t fret. Too much.
Every single one of my exes seems incredibly happy right now, but sooner or later, one of these women might remember how much fun we had in one of my tiny apartments decorated with clothes on the floor and dishes on top of every horizontal surface.
I’ll be tickled green when one of them robs Fort Knox for my marriage dowry. I can’t wait for one to secretly write me about how boring their lives are now compared to the times we watched sci-fi movies on my couch/bed/dinner table. For some reason, it hasn’t happened. Yet.
What’s the real reason behind sending “Happy Birthday” emails to somebody I haven’t seen in months, years or even decades? I’m not trying to be a whiny stalker, creepy crybaby or smooth-talking loverboy playing mind games and/or trying to get back together.
First off, I do this just to be nice. Next, I’ve learned that I’m sometimes a shitty boyfriend. However, I think I’m an amazing friend. Every morning, I look at my list of “friends” on Facebook and write on their walls: “Have a happy happy birthday!” So why don’t I do this with the women I’ve loved, who loved me or just shared some wonderful times together?
All these ladies — long or short relationships, good girlfriend or bad — have changed my life for the better (mostly). That means I’d like them to be my friend and to treat them like a friend.
Unless they dumped me and said, “I hope we can still be friends.” No HBDs from me.