February 20, 2014

Mini-freakout

"Why you want to leave me!" Nina wailed like the father in My Big Fat Greek Wedding. "I mean, who am I going to come to when I start to screw things up with Nick? Which you know I will. This one is just as much a basket case as me." She jerked her thumb at Ashley.

Ashley tossed her hands in the air. "Thanks for the vote of confidence, Nins."

"Wow." I took a pull of my bloody. We were at our favorite brunch place, Walker's, where the servers are sassy relics of the Chelsea Hotel glory days in the 60s. It might be my favorite place in New York.   "I'm honestly flattered that you don't consider me a basket case. I'm like the basket casiest of the basket cases."

"You used to be," Nina said, "but you've really mellowed now that you're on the wrong side of twenty-five."

I pointed my finger at her. "You're next, you know."

Nina slapped her hand to her forehead. "That's another thing you won't be here for! My birthday!"

"Maybe we'll come out and visit you for it," Ashley suggested. "That could be fun."

"Oh, yeah," Nina drummed her fingers on the table, plotting. "We can go to the Viper Room and hang out with all the grimy hot celebs."

"Cool your jets," I stabbed a forkful of Cobb salad, "I don't think I'm going to have much time to socialize while I'm out there. William keeps telling me how there is no precedent for this at CWA—an assistant simultaneously entrenched in the program and still working for her boss. I'm going to be at it six, seven days a week."

"You should tell Peter that," Nina said. "Ain't no time for hanky-panky."

"There's always time for hanky-panky with Peter." Ashley smiled, slyly. She's been pretty brazen about waving her Team Peter flag lately. Richard's heart-wrenching back story, the way he responded so coolly to the news that Peter was LA-bound too, it had softened her a little to him, but not enough. It was a little annoying, but I've given her plenty of shit for the guys she dated in the past (with the exception of Tom, as that was well-warranted concern and I'll never say I shouldn't have spoken up then), so maybe it's just my karma.

"No, there isn't," I said. "I'm obsessed with Richard. The sooner you get that through your thick skull the better."

"And the sooner you get that through Peter's thick skull the better," Nina said. I was meeting Peter for a drink later in the week. I had asked him. I wanted to make it crystal freaking clear that not only would nothing happen between us in LA because I'm in love with someone else, but that it could put my job in jeopardy.

Nina brushed some crumbs off her lap and stood. "Going to the loo."

"You know I'm just teasing you, right?" Ashley said when we were alone. "I do actually think Richard is a good guy. I didn't before, but I do now. I just think Peter is a good guy too."

"Peter is a good guy," I said, "but I've always felt inferior to him, in a way. I don't want to be with someone who makes me second-guess myself. And I never second-guess myself around Richard. That's why I love him." I dunked a french fry in a blob of ketchup. "That, and he gives as good as he gets. I want someone who calls me on my bullshit." I popped the french fry in my mouth and thought for a moment. "Also, it's kind of dick of Peter to insert himself into my work life like this. It's almost like he's doing it because he subconsciously doesn't want me to do well. Like it freaks him out that my career is finally going"—I froze as Nina's phone lit up on the table with a text. It was from Richard.

Ashley widened her eyes at me. "What the fuck?"

We both craned our necks to try and read the text upside down. One thing that has started to deteriorate now that I'm on the wrong side of twenty-five is my eyesight. I squinted at his text, but I couldn't make out the words. "What does it say?"

"Pick it up before the screen goes dark," Ashley whispered.

"You pick it up," I hissed.

Ashley glanced over her shoulder to make sure Nina wasn't coming and snatched the phone off the table. She began to read out loud. "Did she say anything about Peter? And yeah, I realize what a sad-sack I sound like right now. I just feel like that guy has chocolate flavored nipples or something and I can't compete. I need to know what...."Ashley stopped, abruptly.

"Need to know what?' I demanded.

"I don't know. The screen went dark before I could get to the end." She set the phone down and I stared at it for a moment before grabbing it myself.

"What are you doing?" Ashley looked over her shoulder again. "She's going to be back any second."

"I'm going to ask her about it," I said. "I'm not going to pretend like I didn't see that. I can't pretend like I didn't see that."

We waited in silence until Nina returned from the bathroom. The smile fell away from her face when she saw I was holding her phone in my hand.

"Richard just texted you," I said.

Nina tossed her hair. "Ah, yes. We're having an affair."

I tilted my head at her. "Come on. I read it. At least part of it."

Nina plucked the phone out of my hand and turned it on. Her eyes scanned Richard's text. "It should be illegal to read a person's phone the way it's illegal to go through a person's mail."

 "You left your phone on the table and it blew up with a text from my boyfriend," I said. "I'm human. I was curious. What does he need to know, anyway?"

Nina propped her elbows on the table and parked her chin in her hands. "What he's up against."

"What he's up against?" Ashley repeated.

"Yeah. Like, if you still have feelings for Peter. If he's about to get his heart fed through the shredder. He knows I'm 100% on his team," she shot an accusing look at Ashley, "he asks me for advice sometimes. I think it's sweet."

It actually was sweet. I'd always wanted a boyfriend who got along like a bandit with my best friend. I loved the idea of him going to her for advice on birthday gifts, what my favorite flowers are (not that so many guys have sent me flowers in my life that I even know). "I just didn't realize he was shaken by this whole thing," I said, "he was so...cocky about it."

"Come on, Jos," Nina said, "he put on a brave face. He didn't want to ruin your moment."

I bit my lower lip, feeling bad that I was so singularly focused that I didn't pick up on Richard's discomfort. "Well," I said, "he doesn't have anything to worry about. I swear on my new Alexander Wang bag."

"You bought an Alexander Wang bag?" Ashley gasped.

"Well," I sniffed, "it's like a million seasons old and it was 70% off on The Outnet. But still."

Ashley bit into a mini poppy seed muffin, which Walker's serves for free with their brunch and sweet baby Jesus they are delightful. "He knows you're meeting Peter for a drink next week, right?"

I nodded, emphatically. "Of course. I wouldn't meet my ex-boyfriend for a drink and not tell him. That would be ridiculously shady."

"So maybe after that he'll feel better about the whole thing," Ashley offered.

"And in the meantime," Nina added, "maybe go out of your way to reassure him that you two are really solid?"

"Guys," I laughed, "I don't know why you're so worried about me leaving. I'm the one who's going to be screwed without you."

"So, they have these things called phones," Nina said, "and you can call us and tell us when you're being a dumb-dumb and we'll set you right."

I threw a mini-muffin at her.



40 comments:

  1. I love this. It seems like things are going really well for Josie and Richard right now - but I'm sure we can count on Peter to mess it all up... I'm excited to see what happens when they grab drinks!

    breakupsmakeups.wordpress.com

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  2. First off, my life is basically My Big Fat Greek Wedding so I looooved that reference! Also, interesting twist with Nina. Wonder if that will come back later? I've always been a Nina fan, but I'm not so sure about this one! Maybe I'm just too used to plot twists though... always expecting the worst!

    I've just started writing a fiction blog too, so check it out if you like reading stories about women somewhat similar to this! http://highheelshappyhour.blogspot.com/

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  3. Hah, I also came to say that I love this. The only thing I can't really understand is why Josie thinks it's necessary or a good idea to go and meet Peter? I understand that she wants to make it clear to him that nothing is going to happen. But sometimes it's really just better to leave it. This makes me think that Josie is also not totally over him. And will she ever be? Well, the story has to go somewhere right. :)

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    1. I don't think it's a horrible idea, especially after he told her point blank that he is involved with the project solely because she'll be there. However, I do think that could be said over the phone, no?

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  4. A bit off topic but I really like the friendship between Nina, Ashley, and Josie is, at the moment. They seem to be very comfortable with one another, not afraid to voice their opinions about one another and not reacting defensively towards those opinions, because they have that sense of trust-- trust that they just want the best for each other. It's just really sweet:)

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    1. That's exactly what I was thinking, I especially love Nina in this post.

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  5. I can't help but think that Nina isn't been completely honest and there is more to that story. I would be so upset if my best friend was going behind my back to my boyfriend with things I might have told her in confidence. I hope that is not the case here. I hope Nina doesn't go back and forth between the two. I have a feeling that Josie isn't quite over Peter but who knows? I love all these twists and turns:)

    I too, have been inspired to create a blog so if anyone is interested, here's the link:
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  6. Josie's confidence scares me. She was the same way when the relationship was reversed and she was with Peter. She was so sure that she was never going to even sleep with Richard back then, so I'm not so sure how long this confidence of hers is going to last. I'm very neutral on being team Peter or team Richard right now. I'm going with the flow of the story, but I truly don't think Peter is inserting himself into her work so that he can prevent her from being successful. It's one thing to say things that make Josie feel inferior to him, but I never pegged Peter as someone who would purposely ruin her career. Especially going through all the trouble of moving across the country to do so. I think Josie just wants to think that so that she won't fall for him again, but I think it's obvious that Josie's not quite over him. Josie did always say that Peter was someone to go after what he wants, and that's what I think he's doing. Anyways, I'm excited to see how drinks with him will go!

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  7. Richard is now in the same place Josie was when she first dated Peter. Richard is insecure about Peter like Josie was about Elizabeth. Josie is moving up the career ladder, Richard is sort of at a stalemate. This should be interesting to see how Josie handles the situation.

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  8. Sounds like Josie is being very mature with her relationship with Richard, which is a nice change. She's secure, thinking of him first, and being straight up with Peter. I think that would have happened a year or so ago. Whether it's Richard himself or maturity, I guess we'll find out! I still think there is a bigger pull with Peter though.

    www.minneapplegirl.com

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  9. Loved it, i do hope Peter leaves her alone and doesn't persist, i bet she succumbs if he badgers the hell out of her. Again, since R isn't working... he should just go too!! Is that desperate lol i love this blog and i want to see J in a stable relationship for a good long time!!

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  10. I have a feeling Josie isn't over Peter. If she were completely over him she wouldn't invite him out for a drink to tell him she's in love with Richard, she would leave him alone. I also don't think Peter is trying to sabotage her career at all. Wasn't Peter the one who saved her when she going to allow Elizabeth access to William's office months ago? I think Nani correct, Josie/Richard is now just like how her initial relationship with Peter was, except now she is in control. Can't wait so see how this plays out.

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  11. I find it amusing that Josie has had so many short lived relationships. I just have a feeling she is going to mess this up. I mean, c'mon. I'm 20 and am in a 3 year relationship with my man.

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  12. I can't help but laugh at Josie in regards to Peter. He hasn't even done anything yet and Josie is inviting him for a drink to tell him nothing is going to happen. If she really didn't want to have anything to do with him, she would just stay clear of him. The Richard/Nina thing is weird. Richard asks her for advice sometimes but Josie doesn't know anything about that? Not cool

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  13. so I don't normally complain on this blog. its good for the most part. But I am bored to death of Richard, can we change it up, plz??????

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  14. Don't fuck this up for me, Peter! Lol
    Team Richard all the way.

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  15. I agree with one the first comments, Josie seems way waaaay to confident. I think she is overestimating herself, and forgetting that six months is kind of a long time. With Richard having the past that he has and Peter being so enchanting it just seems like a recipe for disaster.
    Can't wait to see what happens once she's in Los Angeles, being from Los Angeles myself, I can't wait to read about Josie in our local cool spots.

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  16. She's never second-guessed herself around Richard? Seriously? He has been such a jerk and pulled so many dick moves on Josie in the past. He's made her feel like shit. And she loves him? I don't think Josie knows what love is. And surely she can't think Peter is sabotaging her career. He's saved her ass from Elizabeth a couple times before where she could have, quite easily, lost her job. Now Richard bribes her with designer stuff. The texting between Nina and Richard seem so dodge too. If there was nothing to report, Nina should have just shown the texts to Josie, not read them aloud. Weird.

    #teampeter

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    1. Oopsies, I reread the post and Richard DIDN'T buy Josie the AW bag. Heh my bad.

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  17. I have a feeling this Nina and Richard thing is going to come back and bite Josie. I can see it now Richard is lonely while Josie is in LA and him and Nina get drunk and hook up. Its a little shady that Nina didn't tell Josie, Richard was texting her, even if its just for advice.
    I like Richard and think it will be good to see where him and Josie go but I still love Peter and have a soft spot for him, I think him and Josie are great together.

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    1. This is EXACTLY how I feel! I think something's gonna happen with Nina and Richard too. I find it a bit weird that Richard's been texting Nina, and Josie had no idea about it. I'm the same way about Richard and Peter too. I've warmed up to Richard, but I've always loved Peter and I love him and Josie together more than Richard and Josie together.

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    2. I disagree. That would make Josie and Nina's friendship irreparable and I don't think Jess would write her out of the story. She is a good friend to Josie.

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  18. Team Peter ready to see peter back in the picture

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  19. Team Peter ready to see peter back in the picture

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  20. This doesn't look good. I'm sorry, when did having drinks become the go-to way for 25 year olds to talk things out?? I'll be 25 in a few months, I need to know what to expect lol. I usually go for the coffee, which I think Jos should really do w/ Peter-- I just don't trust an inebriated Jos and Peter at night "talking things out".

    And I agree with most of these comments: Josie's a bit too confident and not as cautiously optimistic as she should be; and Nina/Richard should have said something about how cool the two have become. I get that they're just friends talking about Josie, but I would've been a bit uneasy finding out that way.

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  21. Richard is 29 freakin years old, up mean to tell me he didn't have the balls to tell Josie how he felt? Instead he texts her best friend like they are in high school?! Josie has been 100% truthful with him since day one. She doesn't deserve that. I may just be trying to find faults with Richard because I can't stand the way he used to treat her. But anyways I can't wait for her to get to LA.

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  22. Another good post! Still can't help but root for Peter! Exited to see how that drink goes!

    I hate to mooch off your posts, but I just posted my very first entry on my own fictional blog, looking for some feedback! Check it out! :)

    http://surprisinglytheothergirl.blogspot.com/

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  23. This post made me smile.. I love reading the cute little friendship moments just as much (sometimes more) than the boy and work drama. :)

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  24. I agree. There is no reason for Josie to meet Peter for drinks. Me doth protest too much. The lights went off in her conference room cause Josie was too stunned to move when she found out Peter was 'missing her'. Was that 15 minutes or more? If you aren't affected by any declaration, you just keep on moving. Josie was blindsided!! She ain't over Peter! She just felt insecure around him in the past! Maybe she is now maturing?!
    LA is going to be hot!!

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  25. TEAM RICHARD ALL THE WAY

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  26. really hoping Josie doesn't do anything she will regret when she meets Peter for drinks! haven't decided which team I'm on, but Richard does deserve some respect

    love this blog!!

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