Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Smashing Gingerbread Men

I killed the last of the gingerbread men.  I took a tablespoon and pulverized their heads and arms and feet.  I really wanted to throw dishes off the terrace so I could hear the pottery shatter on the parking lot pavement, but the security guard would certainly have noticed, so I crushed half a bag of tortilla chips instead.  I pounded that bag with my fist until I smashed them to smithereens.

It was all because of Buzz Kill.  He came over Sunday afternoon to set a schedule with Velvet for painting the apartment.  They are starting today by sanding the window sills and patching holes in the wall.  There was other family business to address, but I can't even remember what we were supposed to do. Property Taxes or something.  It doesn't matter.  He walked into the apartment, so late that I had just called him to say he should forget about coming over, and proceeded to shove his own agenda in my face.

As someone who has dealt with this passive aggressive douchebag for years and years and years, I should have recognized the set up.  Buzz Kill buries his own anger so deeply down inside himself that he can effectively believe he's not a bit angry.  Then he pisses off everybody else and experiences anger vicariously through us, sitting there snickering as if he can't understand our rage when he's the motherfucker who deliberately - albeit subconsciously - provoked the situation so he could enjoy the Angry Show.

He pulled this same bullshit the whole time we were married.  He and Vagina Dentata were in business together as manufacturer's reps for ladies' accessories, and Buzz Kill would come home from the showroom filled with complains about Vagina Dentata's outrageous behavior.  I inevitably put on an angry show while Buzz Kill sat quietly and said he didn't have time to be angry because he had to go back to work with her in the morning.  After a few years, I told him that I didn't want to hear another word about his fucking business since he never listened to me and wouldn't do anything to change the situation for himself.  He moved in with Vagina Dentata after the divorce, into the same room he lived in as a child.  Four years later, he still lives there - although he spends most of his time at his girlfriend's.

He's a putz.

He's still in the business although they no longer have a Fifth Avenue showroom and his mother's bogus role in the corporation was eliminated in the bankruptcy.   Before we divorced, I tried to get him to restructure the business effectively phasing out his mother.  Even though his robber baron sister was already "buying out" Vagina Dentata's shares of the family corporation and thereby proving her with a steady, reliable income, Buzz Kill didn't want to hurt his mother's feelings by suggesting it was time for her to retire.  Never mind that her only job for over a decade had been to order in lunch for everyone at the showroom, suck up to buyers and designers, drink copious amounts of chardonnay all afternoon, then wear the jewelry samples and hats out with her drinking buddies to the theatre or dinner or some fashion related public relations function.

The only way Buzz Kill could get Vagina Dentata out of the business without hurting her feelings was to run it into bankruptcy.  The final hearing was back in the fall.

The worst thing she ever did was during one of the endless series of Market Weeks, where little vendors from around the country set up booths in the Javitz Center.  She found a budding designer and ordered a custom fox fur coat and hat made from pelts she chose specially to match the shade she dyed her hair and charged it to the business.  No wonder our personal account was terminally overdrawn.  I finally set up a separate account of my own, where I deposited my meager paychecks from the local YMCA where I taught art classes to preschoolers.  That way I knew I'd have grocery money and bus fare for me and Velvet no matter how fucked up our finances got because of Buzz Kill and that boozy bitch, Vagina Dentata.

It's not Vagina Dentata's fault, of course.  Buzz Kill was a grown man with a family of his own.  He made his own choices, and he chose to support her before his family.   Now he supports his mini-triathlon habit and I smash gingerbread men.

On Sunday I was furious at Buzz Kill for devoting all his spare time over the last couple of years to training for mini-triathlons and leaving all the parenting to me.  He's so into his own damn self that instead of sleeping at home on his nights with Velvet, Buzz Kill ditched right after dinner to go sleep at his girlfriend's place, leaving Velvet to tend to Vagina Dentata.  After a few weeks of this shit, Velvet stopped sleeping at his Dad's.

In the land of divorces, Buzz Kill isn't a horrible father.  He's just so absent that Velvet experiences him as an Uncle instead of a Father.  For the last several months, Velvet's been meeting Buzz Kill at a local pub to drink a couple of beers and throw darts.  According to Velvet, Buzz Kill goes to that pub almost every day, so it's like he's created his own personal Cheers.

It could be worse - but he's still a putz.

It's just a good thing I divorced him when I did, protecting the apartment from the IRS.  My divorce decree requires Buzz Kill to put 75% of Velvet's college expenses into a separate escrow account once the apartment is sold.  We established these percentages after the court insisted that an independent forensic accountant go over Buzz Kill's books to determine how much money the business actually made.  Buzz Kill did things like pay Velvet's summer camp tuition straight from the business account so we maintained a certain lifestyle without declaring income to the IRS.  All that eventually came to light in the corporate bankruptcy, but by then, I had secured the apartment, Velvet's college money and miscellaneous other funds.

The good news is that any time I have a real issue with Buzz Kill over money, all I have to do is mention the word "lawyer" or "judge" and he shuts the fuck up.


mac said...

My ex's daughter is a lawyer, I can't scare her with those words.

Isn't it funny how "civil" separations cause more personal grief tan the nasty ones do sometimes? I mean, if I didn't give a shit about her, none of her shit would bother me in the least.

Then again, I do get a kick out her at times. Her new blonde hair and mustang are a hoot ;-)

Gail said...

Happy New Year" And wow, your understanding of how and what and why is fascinating and right - Buzz Kill is so a putz!! ANd I love the 'skinny picture' of Vagina Dentata'. heehee.
You can feed the smashed gingerbread men to the birds, just put the crumbs on your deck ledge.
Love to you in 2011

Vancouver Voyeur said...

I think Buzz Kill and the Spin Doctor share the same playbook. I can't even be in the same room as Spin Doctor or speak to him, he still sends me into a blinding rage with his non-stop shit. I don't know how you do it, those gingerbread men must be like popping those plastic packaging bubbles. :-)

Jennifer said...

What is it with some people? I I can more understand greed, alcoholic and hedonist tendencies more than I can understand those people who are compelled to fuck with those in their lives. It can't feel good. Can it?

Jennifer said...

Maybe I should proof my comments before posting them. Thank goodness I'm not a writing teacher or anything. But you get the idea.

MRMacrum said...

I had a snarky remark that upon review seemed over the top. So I guess all there is to say is hang in there.

PENolan said...

Gail, I swear that woman drives me nuts - but the good news is that Velvet has seen through her efforts to turn him into a drinking buddy. So at least he's safe from THAT.

Love and Light to you too.

mac - I get a kick out of Buzz Kill's missing eye tooth. But shucks. I wanted to get a mustang convertible when I sell the condo. I'd go vintage (1966 or a Shelby) but I want a good air conditioner. Maybe I should go for an old Mercedes instead. Or a T-Bird.

V.V. Never forget I was heavily medicated for most of my marriage. Depakote and Prozac, with occasional Valium. Pinot Noir, too.
We'd been fully divorced for a just over a year when I started phasing off the meds. Now I've been med free for two years.

Jenn - I attempted to be all Namaste about human bullshit, but then I decided that some people just SUCK.

MRMacrum, you've made me curious. I love it when you're snarky.

mac said...

Yeah, I shouldn't be so pissy about her 'stang. My Mama bought one too, she's 73 years old :-)

I guess I just think it's funny because she used to give me shit about Peaches (the bike). She never "got" it. Oddly enough, I still have the same bike as I had before her.

okjimm said...

I don't know what to say..... I guess I have no problems with my divorce. Boy Wonder flew back to Oregon this morning.... last night I had dinner with the ex and kids; fixed a table leg for her, she cooked. Hung out with both kids and watched some films. Not that we are buddy-buddy or anything, but we never played games with the kids or tug-of war.
I've heard some nasty divorce stories......and they all suck.

dissed said...

He's an asshole, that's all, and you're reminded that there are far worse things than being alone.

PENolan said...

Far worse indeed, dissed.
I'll be glad when this apartment is sold and I've got no further business with him.

Okjimm, you're lucky.

okjimm said...

PeNolan.... well it ain't all fun&stuff.... but the alternative was to play funny games and screw up the kids. Our break up was NOT about Sex, drugs or violence...we just didn't like to be with each other anymore.

Susan Tiner said...

Hi Patricia,
Happy New Year. I've been away, but just caught up on your posts. I am glad to hear that you've confirmed your datability and that there's a plan for Velvet passing classes at Tree Hugger. I'm sorry about the latest Buzz Kill nonsense but I love reading about Buzz Kill and Vagina Dentata.

I'll probably be around less in 2011 as I'm trying to spend less time online, but I drop in now and then.

Makropoulos said...

I absolutely love the first paragraph of this entry. The rest is pretty passionate too, but I love the gingerbread devouring and smashing pottery. I know the feeling.

PENolan said...

Glad to see you, friend.

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