A Tale Of Two Garth’s. Chapter Three. Lies and Granny Panties.
So there I was. Living in Sherman Oaks California with two amazingly attractive women and I was having a long distance relationship with the man who was going to father my unborn children. Or so I thought. My roommates Claire and Hung had gotten me a job at Jerry’s Famous Deli on Ventura blvd and things were looking good for me. I had built in friends and a job; the only thing that was missing in my life was Garth. But hey, San Diego was only two hours away and we would make it work.
Garth and I spoke on the phone everyday. Things were going so well between us that I didn’t see the red flashing “WARNING” sign staring me directly in the eyes. The first such warning came on a Saturday night. I called down to San Diego to talk to Garth, but his roommate Casey answered the phone.
“Hey Casey, what’s up?”
“Hey Stace. How are you?” he asked.
“I’m good,” I lied. I missed San Diego so much I ached. It wasn’t just Garth I missed. I missed seeing the water everyday. I missed my old job and all the money I made. And I missed Kristina. I was only working the weekend shifts at Jerry’s and was stuck on the patio. This may sound like an awesome shift but the heat in the valley was literally melting anyone who dared to sit outside. Jerry’s ran on seniority. Being as I didn’t have any, I not only couldn’t score any more shifts but I couldn’t move up to a better station. I was going to live out the rest of my Jerry’s existence on the backside of the patio sweating for every dime I earned.
“Garth’s not here. He’s out with Ashley.” Ashley? What? I was seething. Ashley was a girl who Garth had been in love with back in high school. Ashley had just moved back to LA from Hawaii and was now apparently hanging out in San Diego with my boyfriend. That is just perfect, I thought as every muscle in my hand tried it’s best not to crush the phone.
“Please ask him to call me when he gets home, okay.”
“Sure thing,” Casey said. I felt like I was going to be sick. I had never met Ashley but I had just spoken to Garth the night before and he didn’t mention she was going to visit. So I sat in my room, watched some TV, and tried not to let my mind to go the dark side. But the hours passed and still no phone call from Garth. More hours passed followed by more TV and that’s when I began talking to myself. “Stacy, everything is okay. He loves you. They are just friends.” I repeated my mantra over and over, trying to convince myself as I watched the hours slowly slip by. Before I knew it the sun was up and I was livid. Not just a little livid, but “I feel like breaking some shit” livid.
It wasn’t that I was just a jealous girlfriend with an over-active imagination. But I was a faithful jealous girlfriend with an over-active imagination. I’d had my opportunities to see how green the grass was on the other side of the fence, but I’d always stayed put. For example, Jon was a manager at Jerry’s who had been flirting with me ever since I had started working there. Jon was a really nice guy who hung out with Claire, Hung and myself and would take the three of us out for drinks. Truth be told, the flirtation wasn’t one-sided. I was also kind of attracted to him. So much so that Claire picked up on the chemistry and promised not to tell Garth if I hooked up with Jon. It was flattering, and a little tempting, but not enough to blow what I had with Garth. Just as well, because the more I got to know Jon, the more his colors started to fade, and eventually I only saw him as a kind of tacky friend. Jon started getting frustrated with where we were (and where we weren’t), and started to show his true colors.
One night Claire, Hung and I had a party at our house and Jon brought a date in an attempt to make me jealous. I say this because every time I walked into the room, he started making out with her. A few times he caught her by surprise in mid-conversation and she spilled her drink down his shirt. Nice. But I had grown out of my Jon flirtation, and I wasn’t really phased by his actions. After I was tired and bored of watching him make an ass out of himself, I decided it was time to go to bed. As I was laying in my bed trying to doze off to sleep, he and his “prop” burst through my bedroom door and started making out in my vanity area with me lying there in my bed. Seriously? Note to self: Disinfect vanity area before touching anything! I lay there, trying to ignore the two drunken idiots bumping and grinding against my bathroom counter. But soon I’d had enough. I started thrashing around in my bed like I was having night terrors but they didn’t seem to notice. I tried clearing my throat to give them a subtle hint that I was indeed in the room and awake. Subtle is apparently lost on the horny because it took a full on coughing fit and the loss of exactly one lung before I could get the innocent girl in this sick charade to take notice of my existence.
“I think someone is in here,” she whispered. You think? She hurried out of MY bedroom looking completely embarrassed. That is when Jon looked over to where my bed was and gave a little smile into the mirror that faced my bed. Asshole!
Then there was Mr. Hot Body. Claire, Hung and I used to like to hang out at this bar in LA that had three stories to it. It was pretty cool actually. For the most part we hung out on levels two and three because they weren’t as crowded and obnoxious as level one. We did this because were able do dance our asses off without much interruption from the male sex. But on this particular night Claire was on the prowl and wanted to brave the first floor. Which meant that we not only had to endure endless lines and elbowing to get to the bartenders, but we had to look at stupid drunk chicks making out with each other trying to get attention from the men. I’m sorry, but if you can’t pull in the men without making out with another chick then you need to work on your game. So there we were packed in like sardines on an already over-crowded dance floor when the man onstage announced that they were going to have a hot body contest. Huh!? Before I knew it blonde Claire in all her 5’10, DD greatness was making her way to the stage.
“She is not going to enter this is she?” I yelled Hung’s way.
“Oh, yes. Yes she is.”
Now Claire is devastatingly beautiful and sexy, but she was also very drunk. And there is one little known secret about Claire, she used to wear granny panties. And she was very proud of them. So I stood there watching my roommate and good friend shake her moneymaker in her granny panties and Maidenform bra. The crowd loved her. What she lacked in lingerie she more than made up for in self-confidence and crazy, funky dance skills. And I almost shot jagermeiser out of my nose. She didn’t win, but I’ve got to tell you she came pretty damn close. And then it was the guys’ turn.
After the Hard Body contests were over the stage was opened up for the masses. Hung and I had been laughing our asses off watching Claire up there and we finally pushed our way through the sea of people to get to her.
“Come up here!” she yelled to us. Both Hung and I shook our heads “No,” but she kept beckoning us up. How could we resist the bravest, craziest woman we had ever known? When we got up on stage we hugged and high fived the poster child for curvy girls everywhere. Then I felt a bit of heat radiating from the left side of my body. That’s when I noticed Hung’s face and a smile a mile wide spread across it.
“What?” I asked her. I was afraid to look. Both she and Clair just started laughing and Hung nodded for me to look over. I turned my head to the left slightly; Oh my God it’s Mr. Hot body. Part of me wanted to start laughing, but the other part of me was really flattered. Out of this sea of half-naked girls making out with each other, he wanted to dance with me. Me in my jeans, faded t-shirt and my black converse all stars. Hung and Claire just looked at me and Hung had to turn around because she was laughing so hard I thought she was about to pass out. Claire wasn’t any help either, giving me the thumbs up and the “Go for it!” look. So I decided to dance with Mr. Hard Body for a while. He wasn’t the sharpest tool in the shed but he was a really nice guy. I think we had a really nice conversation. I can’t be sure because to be completely honest it was so loud we were pretty much yelling at one another trying to be heard. And that’s when he dropped the bomb on me.
“So do you want to come home with me?”
There I was, 24 years old, looking at a very attractive and shirtless 21 year old. He didn’t just have a six-pack; he had a twelve-pack. And possibly the sex drive of two 18 year olds.
“…I have a boyfriend, but you are very, very cute,” I told him. And I wasn’t lying, he was adorable, and had I been single I might have taken him home and eaten him up. But I was in love. Mr. Hard body gave me a sad face and a hug and then went on to girls closer to his age range. I had full confidence that he would not only get laid that night but that if he played his cards right he could probably make it a two-fer.
So this is what I was dealing with on my end of the relationship while Garth was apparently spending the night with Ashley. I waited around until 9 am when I decided Garth deserved a call from his “girlfriend.” I was his girlfriend right? I mean that’s what he called me. That’s what we agreed on when we agreed to this monogamous long-distance relationship. If that wasn’t the case, I needed to find Mr. Hot Body’s number.
“Hello,” Garth said when he answered the phone.
“Hey babe, how are you?”
“I’m good. How are you?”
“I called you last night and you weren’t home. Did you get my message?”
“Yeah, I was hanging out with Drew last night.”
“Drew, huh? Is that your nickname for Ashley?”
“You lied to me,” I told him.
“I didn’t lie. I just didn’t tell you because I knew this is how you would react!” He was all of a sudden mad at me. Wait? How did this get turned around?
“Did she sleep over?”
“Where did she sleep?”
“Stacy, I’m not going to justify that with an answer. I’m YOUR boyfriend and if you don’t trust me….”
My head was spinning so fast I couldn’t pay attention to his protests. This was the point in the relationship where I should have ended it. If he was spending the night with Ashley two months after I moved away, then what else was he doing? But this was Garth. This was my sweet Garth who walked me home at night and left me flowers. He loved me.
“…You’re my girlfriend, and Ashley’s just a friend,” he continued.
As I sit here now writing about this I just want to take the keyboard and hit myself in the head repeatedly. But I was 24 at the time. I believed in flowers and romance and the kind of love young women believe in. So I stayed. I stayed for what was to become one of the worst, most humiliating, hurtful, empowering, growing experiences of my life. I stayed. I stayed to become…well, me.
To be continued…
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