Other people’s parents. I hate meeting other people’s parents. I feel like a total dork.

I’m just not so good at it. I try really hard to make a good impression. I get really nervous… and then I get really uncomfortable that they hate me and they know that they are making me nervous and they know that I’d rather be somewhere else and then I end up not talking at all because it’s easier than keeping up the conversation…

I’m sure it all comes from my parents. My mother, no matter how old my friend, talks to them like they are four. She gets freaked out by younger people. “DO YOU LIKE MOVIES? THAT’S GOOD. YOU’RE A GOOD BOY, YOU KNOW THAT?” My dad’s tactic is a little more blatant. He ignores them. Just sits in his chair and reads or watches television.

Other People’s Parents could be the nicest people on the earth, offering me chocolates and tea and “isn’t-the-weather-simply-atrocious” or they could be toothless and dancing on tables and I would still have the same look on my face: total and utter horror.

Which also makes me look like I’m bored and they aren’t entertaining me enough. So they ask me since I’m in comedy if I can tell them a few jokes and I try to say no and they say “come on,” and I try to explain that I’m not a stand-up comic and the stuff I do is improv, which you make up right there, or sketch, which requires other actors, props and costumes. So then they persist, saying that this is like improv, and “surely you must have one joke” and I always back down into my joke-in-the-pocket:

[scripty]PAMIE
Knock, Knock.

SOMEONE’S PARENT
Who’s there?

PAMIE
The Great Interrupting cow.

SOMEONE’S PARENT
Oh! The Great Interrupt–

PAMIE
MOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

And hilarity ensues. pamie takes giant bow and is welcomed into said someone’s parent’s life.
[/scripty]

I just got some bad news after I finished the above.

Two friends of mine are splitting up after quite some time together. I am deeply saddened and at a loss for words. I have other friends (two couples) going through divorces right now.

Love is funny, isn’t it? The things we do for love… the things we won’t do for love… the way that your mind gets all twisted around when you don’t know what you really want anymore and you don’t know what or who to hang onto, and part of you doesn’t want to hang onto anything and you want to be your own person and you want to do what’s best for You and No One Else, but then you think about it, and you really liked the person you were when you were with that someone else. Or you think about it, and you realize that you never want to be that person again. But there was a time, when this person meant the world to you. I find it amazing how easy it is for the human mind to forget about why they were with someone in the first place. We become obsessed with being correct in things… we want to be the Better Person in the ex-relationship. We want to be the one that friends and family side with. “Look what he/she did to me.” When the truth is often times you did it to each other. People become so vulnerable when they are in love. They will show you the very deepest, blackest part of their souls and look at you with frightened eyes asking, “Do you still think I’m great? Even after knowing that?” And of course you still think they are great, because nothing’s swaying you in the New Love stage of the relationship… but it all comes back in the Getting Sick Of You stage, where all the tricks are played. Every thing you’ve ever said that you regret saying was said during this stage. You never liked his parents. You never liked her poetry. She faked it with you the first time. He was the one to accidentally run over your cat. She always loved Last Boyfriend better. (That last one was actually said to me. He said, “I’ll never love you the way I loved ______ and that’s too bad for you. You’ll never experience my truest love and devotion.”)

And hey, I think I did, for a while. But when you are in the Angry Stages of the relationship, people say the cruelest things. It becomes a case of sibling rivalry. The couple are together long enough that they start thinking like brother and sister… they become competitive and fighting for the side of the bed and who uses the car and who holds the remote. It’s territorial.

But when It’s Over… that’s the saddest part. Because even if you get back together, there’s always that fear of abandonment coming back. It’s hard to let someone come back into your life after you’ve just worked so hard to get them out…

I’ve been very lucky. “Lucky” is a terrible word to use in this case, but I’m not sure which is the right word… I’ve always been the dumper. I’ve never been the dumpee… and I think that’s because I don’t leave a relationship until it’s just not going to work anymore. There’s too many raw emotions and frustrations to ever look into each other’s eyes and see the original love. And in just about every case, those men have stayed friends of mine… not best buddies or anything, but I can call them to talk if I wanted to, and we converse by e-mail and phone occasionally. And it’s a year later or eighteen months later, when you’ve really moved on in your life, or maybe found someone else, that you talk to your Ex and you really see why you fell in love with them in the first place. You remember who you were in the Beginning of the relationship and all the good times and then the bad times start seeming silly. And then you have a moment of regret… and then you remember the Getting Sick of You stage and the Really, Really Mean stage and you remember why you high-tailed it out of there.

Some relationships never get to the Really, Really Mean stage. They just lose that piece of electricity that brought them together. They grow apart naturally, or just don’t get what they need in life from the other person anymore. Those can be the saddest break-ups, because there’s no one to blame and there’s no catalyst for the end… it just stopped working. It stopped being your Favorite Thing. How do you explain that one to someone, eh? “It’s not you, it’s me.” Fuck you, it’s me. If it was you and not me, then I’d be breaking up with you and you’d be saying, “It’s not you , it’s me,” and I’d be going, “You’re damn right it’s you.”

I get so sensitive about relationships because being in love is a really important part of my life. It is my base. I don’t feel as funny or as warm or as good of a person without a complimentary side. I like who I am when I’m with my boyfriend. We make each other laugh. He knows me better than anyone else in the world. I am over-protective of our relationship because it’s sacred to me. He’s just an incredible person. And when I hear about break-ups (sometimes between people I thought would stay together forever…) then I get nervous that what I have right now is just as temporary as all the others have been.

In Los Angeles the keyboard broke down during final dress rehearsal. The keyboardist said everything would probably be fine for the show and not to worry… we went to a psychic down the street. And I had my palm read. She said that I was to have a really long life. I would really like my job when I was older. Something really great was going to come out of the show we were doing. I was going to have children. I was a good person and I shouldn’t worry so much.

Then she broke my heart.
–“You aren’t with anyone now, yes?”
–“No! I am! I have a boyfriend.”
–“Oh. And how’s that going?”
–“Really well.”
–“Really?”
–“Yes.”
–“Oh. Because… how long have you been with him?”
–“About a year and a half.”
–“Really?”
–“Yeah.”
–“And everything is good?”
–“Real good.”
–“Well, I don’t see you with him forever. Someone is going to come in and sweep you off your feet. I see someone else in your future.”

And I wanted to scream, “My boyfriend is a Gemini! You’re seeing his twin!”

–“Are you sure?”
–“I could be wrong. If you two are happy. Of course I could be wrong. What do I know? Your keyboard will work.”

And it did. It worked the whole show. In fact, it cut out at one point, and our keyboardist got it back up before he had to play the next note.

But I hope she’s wrong. Because I really like the way things are now. Relationships tend to be a lot of work, but this is the most rewarding work I’ve ever done. I wish there was a way to tell him every day how much he means to me without sounding like Amy Fischer or something… but I think he knows. Deep down he knows that when I’m not with him I miss him. When I go to sleep, I dream of him. And when I think about my future, I always include him in my fantasies.

And then I think… I control my future, and if I want her to be wrong, I can make her wrong. And I will try my hardest. I guess that’s the hard part about relationships– trying to make them work when you start to falter. To keep going at it when your heart isn’t in it anymore, hoping to jump-start it to a place it once was. We all grow up all the time, and sometimes two people who were in the same place at one time end up two different people through the natural course of their lives. I quote The Prophet–

I’m just kidding. I’m not going to quote The Prophet. What kind of candy ass quotes the Prophet outside of a wedding? I just felt I was getting preachy. It’s your life. Live it how you want. Fall in love as much as you can. Have a blast. Just watch the heartbreaking, okay?

I hate to watch love die between friends. Then we have to choose sides and you never get to be a group again. You hear terrible stories about the other person and you don’t know what to think about either of them anymore.

But if they break-up, then they won’t get married… and then you don’t have to meet their parents… now there’s something to think about.

Uughh… I’m gonna go get drunk. In the name of love, of course.

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