June 5, 2008 by 8junebugs
So, the tradition in my family is to informally adopt people to fill roles that are biologically open. Or just because you like them.
Last night, I talked to one such person, a BigBrother friend of the most unlikely sort. I met him because he worked for my dad — funny how many of the important people in my life are in some way connected to that Pleasanton office. But I thought this guy was creepy and immature and totally inappropriate.
He, I think, would be the first to agree with me on that. Because, duh — he still is. Less creepy and inappropriate, perhaps, but definitely immature.
He worked for Dad for a while and carried a couple of other jobs. Somehow, we stayed in touch after he quit the Pleasanton office. Was it because he got into computers at about the same time I did? Did we chat through the early versions of AIM? I forget.
If he worked for my dad and it was 15 years ago, your mathematical prowess is probably telling you that he must be older than I, and your calculations are correct. When I was 15, he was almost 30, which was, like, totally ancient. (See “inappropriate,” above.)
When I was 18 and 19, he worked at a big box computer store teaching software skills. Because I was smart and he knew acknowledging that was the best way to commence flirting with someone HALF HIS EFFING AGE, he kept asking me to come teach classes. Instead, I started dating a guy way more into computers than I was and offered him up as a sacrifice to shut BigBrother up. They got along famously for some time, and that boyfriend went on to get a degree in computer science and do quite well, as far as I know.
(I could mention that the degree is from what we in the ivory tower of higher ed would call a “degree mill,” but that would be unkind. Seems to have worked out just fine for him.)
I lived with that boyfriend for a while in the same complex as BigBrother and we started hanging out socially with him and some of his friends. One night, however, the shit hit the fan.
I didn’t drink during this part of my life — just didn’t care about it yet, I suppose. But the boyfriend had partied in high school and missed that sort of thing, so it should not have surprised me to come home one night (from a 10-hour shift at Victoria’s Secret in a suit and three-inch heels) and find our front door open, music blaring, a greasy pizza box on my $80 Shakespeare text, and an empty bottle of AfterShock on top of the fridge.
And the laundry wasn’t done, so OMG.
(To this day, I cannot drink cinnamon-flavored liqueurs. That stoplight shot on my 21st birthday damn near killed me.)
Before even changing out of my suit, I put things in the apartment in order, mostly, and set the boyfriend up to puke his guts out the rest of the night. And I took the laundry and an apologetic BigBrother down to the communal laundry room, where, still in three-inch heels, I proceeded to separate lights from darks and tear my unlikely friend a brand new asshole. I think it went something like “You matched shots and beers with a kid on whom you’ve got 10 years and 100 pounds? EXCUSE me? You’re teaching his classes tomorrow.” He agreed, and, about four years later, I think I forgave him.
Last night he thought I mocked his age (silence from me apparently means I’m biting back a scathing remark) and he mocked back, assuming that I was in my mid-30s. (Funny, since everyone else seems to think I’m 26 half the time.) But because I’ve always acted like he’s a 17-year-old idiot, he seems to have tacked on a couple extra years here and there to even us out.
I know I said I was only doing a series about my local peeps, so I won’t go into what a loyal and caring guy BigBrother is. He stopped flirting with me yonks ago, though we still joke about it. He was around during the Dumb Year, when taking advantage of me would have been stupidly easy, but he was my protector, not the aggressor.
I think purchasing pay-per-view porn toward the end of EVERY SINGLE ONE of our parties in Dublin was his revenge. (Remember that, Tam?)
So we’re still friends and he’s still the big brother I never had, more than 15 years later. And I still give him a hard time about every other word that comes out of his mouth. That’s just how we roll.