Allow me to set the scene for you: I was sitting on my bed last night, hemming a dress, watching The Food Network and generally minding my own damn business when my phone rang. It was a woman I'll refer to as "Olivia". That's odd. I have her number on my cell only because she insisted I save it when I ran into her one day. We went to high school together, and we cross paths often enough, but we're not exactly BFFs. So I answer the phone.
"Olivia? Que milagro! (Translation: What a miracle!)
"Janina what are you doing?"
"Um, nothing. Why? What's up?"
"I was just thinking about your cupcakes. Do you sell them? I want to buy some!"
Let me fill some of you in here. I've been planning on going to pastry school in September and I've been baking cupcakes like there's no tomorrow. But something about Olivia's phone call was setting off loud alarms in my head. Sort of like when some shifty looking dude stops and offers to help you with your packages before running off with your new Coach purse. I felt like I was stepping in shit, but I had nothing to go on but an ugly hunch.
I told her I'd be baking on Friday in preparation for the Mermaid's Mercantile and she was welcome to buy some then. We discussed prices and flavors. Next thing you know, my guard is down and I ask if she's seen my Oprah audition video. One question leads to another and I end up telling her the whole story of how another high school friend, David, who is a cameraman for The Chelsea Lately Show got me and my sister Debi front row tickets followed by the story of how he volunteered to shoot my audition video for me. Yeah, stupid, I know. I sign off with promises of chocolate cupcakes on Friday.
About an hour later, I'm at Starbucks with "Yvette" (not her real name), a mutual friend, and I tell her of Olivia's call and my uneasiness about it all. We share stories of past confidences betrayed and incidences of back-stabbery. Okay, maybe I'm not nuts after all. I almost mention the night we sat at Yvette's and discussed my depressive episodes. I remember Olivia asking "Is there anything that I, as your friend, can do to help?" It sounded sweet, but again, my alarms went off. I decide I may be seeing monsters under the bed, so I don't bring it up.
Fast forward to the wee hours when I'm most productive. I notice a message from David asking me to call if I'm awake. We hadn't spoken since I edited and posted the video, so I figure that's what he wanted to discuss, so I call him. I was wrong. That was NOT what he wanted to discuss.
Long story short: Olivia was out on the town having drinks with four other friends when she called me. I know one of these women, the others are strangers. Apparently they spent the rest of the night making jokes at my expense. Most of these jokes were centered around my cupcakes (yeah, I don't get it either), and progressing to insinuations that I had sex with David in exchange for his videography services. I didn't. I check the Facebook pages David mentions and sure enough, the snide remarks are there.
There are so many things wrong with this situation, let me just list some.
1. Whaddaya 12 years old????? This is such JUVENILE behavior coming from women in their mid-forties!
2. Why is it that when these five women get together, they feel the need to call me for cheap entertainment? Don't they have lives?
3. Why me? Seriously? Why? I don't even know most of these women!
My Facebook status update currently reads: The good thing about the haters is that they let you know when you're doing something right. Otherwise you'd never show up on their radar!
Did their actions hurt me? Of course. I'm human. Will I retaliate? No. This blog is about all the retaliation you're going to see out of me. I really don't believe in sinking to an asshole's level. I have un-friended the two women from my Facebook page and made my page private. Something I didn't want to do, but, oh well. Will their actions destroy me? No. But it will not go without saying that a woman who launches this type of attack against a "friend" whom she knows to suffer from clinical depression is sort of like someone taking a paraplegic's crutches away. Not life threatening, but mean-spirited and cruel.
It saddens me that David, who's guilty of nothing more than kindness, was hurt by all of this. He didn't deserve to get swept up by this hatefest. I'm sorry David.
Again, yes, it hurt. It hurt as keenly as their middle school behavior would have hurt the middle school aged me. Congratulations "Olivia" and friends. You hit your mark. Happy now? Did that make you feel like a better person?
I suppose that in writing this I'm trying to do what one does with the monsters under the bed. Shine a light on them and hope that they go away.
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