2 Loves 2 Lose by Annie Nishida
If I had to name my ideal man with whom I’d move in, adopt a cat named Pickles with, and hyphenate my last name for (who isn’t Bradley Cooper, Seth Cohen from The OC, or any of my favorite emo band frontmen), it would be Jay Baruchel. I absolutely live for that nasally voice, baby face, and slouchy posture that just screams, “I’m very uncomfortable here. Please kill me.”
To make my dream come true and hear that swoon-worthy speech in person, I got my boyfriend to take me to a How to Train Your Dragon 2 screening and Q&A. After a couple hours of tingly thighs, giggling, and awww-ing at his adorability, it was regrettably time to bid farewell.
As I waited in the lobby for my boyfriend to finish up in the bathroom, I saw him—my sweet baby Jay—and his lanky limbs in all their glory, just standing there. I wanted so badly to go up to him and introduce myself and say that his work in The Sorcerer’s Apprentice is the only reason I can stand to watch that god-awful movie, but I didn’t want to bother him. I mean, he probably hears that people get lady boners when they see him wearing glasses, like, all the time. Plus, the lighting was shitty and the Snapchat picture would come out all gross.
So, I just stood there and watched him shift around alone and uncomfortably, presumably thinking about what he’d been doing with his life the past 25 years or where he could get some good poutine. Then I thought this would be my only time to talk to him about Goon and the fact that he played hockey and I was an ice skater, and that we should totally have a threesome, so I told myself I’d approach (carefully, as if not to startle) him. But then I talked myself out of it because I thought I’d get tongue-tied and over-share like always and that I could just aggressively Tweet at him safely from afar instead, so I backed out.
And then finally, I decided that a grainy selfie was better than Photoshopping myself into a picture with him and the Tropic Thunder cast. And that even if I did get nervous and puke, he would always remember me as the Girl Who Got Really Nervous and Puked When She Met Me, and would tell the story on Conan one day. It was happening. I was going to talk to him.
I looked up, and he was being swarmed by thirty-somethings who wanted to bang his characters in HTTYD2, and I was not about to get all up in that. Because I hesitated, I had no choice but to leave the love of my life behind with all the Toothless-Hiccup “shippers.”
I learned a very important life lesson that day: you don’t get second chances.
About half a year later, I had a nervous breakdown at a BJ’s Brewery. My boyfriend ordered a beer, which led to me giving him the silent treatment during lunch, which led to me eventually throwing a tantrum in the car. This led to him saying that he wasn’t sure he wanted to be with me anymore because he thought we were making each other unhappy. Aka he wanted to fucking break up with me.
Granted, this was no sudden thing, and I hadn’t been in the best mental state for a long time. This wasn’t the first time that his recreational drinking had caused me to scream and cry and hate myself for being bothered by it. At this point in my young adulthood, I was still trying to deal with the fact that he played poker every week at a casino like Ben Affleck. I was still convinced that his ex-girlfriend was trying to win him back and ruin my life through social media (she was). I was still occasionally puking up dinners when I felt “fat.” And on top of all of that, I was completely unaware that this was one of the last times I’d be eating honey-lime seared scallops before BJ’s took it off their menu. It was not a fun time.
According to Annie-logic, there were two things that I could have done. I could have agreed to let him break it off and pack my stuff to move back home into my childhood room still decorated with Jonas Brothers posters, agreeing to “stay in touch because we’re still friends.” Or I could have just, like, not let it happen.
Through my tears, I started to remember my short time with Jay in the lobby when I kept my mouth shut and let him be swarmed by fangirls before I could even propose a night on the town. I was not about to let my boyfriend who completely accepted my affinity with Mr. Baruchel go this easily. So, I didn’t let him do it.
“You don’t get to break up with me. You don’t get to give up. I’m not giving up.”
Of course, there was a lot more stammering. And dribble. And hair pulling and screaming and crying and kicking. But I knew that just like with the other love of my life, Jay, I wasn’t going to get a second chance to tell him how I felt.
We decided to stay together and work through it. I said I would try to be more supportive of his alcohol consumption and gambling, and he promised to try to not do things that upset me and assured me that, yes, his ex is still a piece of shit.
Naturally, for a while after, I felt awful about being with someone who once thought that we were too different to be able to work things out with each other. But then he revealed that he never got comfortable enough to fart in front of the ex-girlfriend who ruined my life, and I felt a million times better.
A gaseous year later, not so much.