Last night I witnessed such a concise, compact character study that if I was still in college and submitted this blog post to a Creative Writing class, I would automatically get an A for it. I mean, this blog post wouldn't actually get a good grade just because I'm not going to waste time parsing word choices and trying to show rather than tell every little thing, but I thought it was a great "truth is stranger than fiction" moment. Just strike "stranger" and replace it with "more dramatic".
I was playing Magic with Paul and Dave yesterday afternoon. One of them mentioned a neighbor of Dave's who plays the game, so they invited him over. I forget the neighbor's name - Tom, maybe - but Paul and Dave tried to give him a nickname and make it stick: "Squirrel Boy", for his obsession with a certain Magic deck he had played on a previous visit. He had been spending time with his girlfriend and a roommate of his (or a friend of his girlfriend, I wasn't too clear on that), so while he was here they hung out and played with Dave's X-Box (or whatever). All three of them in college or I guess maybe grad school. Squirrel Boy looks like a typical surfer and acts the part (well, as far as I can tell on a quiet day indoors with no recreational drugs nearby), and both the girlfriend and the roommate were hot blonde women. The girlfiend also had huge breasts.
Apparently both the ladies were a bit frustrated to be dragged over there while Squirrel Boy played Magic. After a few minutes (we completed one four-way game and a second had just started, I think) she came over and whispered in his ear. I asked if he needed to go and they both left precipitously, grinning. Or course, the roommate was annoyed at the very least at being sexiled. Partly because she had left something or other she would want in their apartment. Especially because, she said, the girlfriend was a bit of an exhibitionist, and wouldn't mind being walked in on inadvertently.
Fine, this problem is a bit funny for the roommate to have. I made wise-ass remarks about how rough it must be to be dating a big-titted blonde exhibitionist. Squirrel Boy came back for a bit and after the roommate had got whatever she needed from the other apartment she rejoined us in Dave's for a little while. Later, though, the roommate mentioned that the girlfriend's phone was ringing and it turned out to be the girlfriend's mother and Dave mentioned to us that she is practically abusive to her daughter.
To me, this put everything about her in a whole new light. Her appearance (blonde bombshell), her taste in boyfriends (it looked to me like could do much better than him), her way of acting (she couldn't kill a little time on her own? If she and Tom had plans then he was being a jerk for skipping them, but that's not the impression I got), her exhibitionism (I find the idea hot myself, forgive me if I'm oversharing, but the roommate made it sound like the girlfriend takes it too far) - every single thing I knew about her. It's because her mother if not both parents treats her like shit, so she seeks approval anywhere she can get it and/or tries to get back at her mother by living down to her expectations.
Although maybe it says more about me that I find this remarkable. Maybe a similar narrative could be found or fabricated about almost everyone and this one jumped out at me because I got to see all the elements of it in one eight-hour period. (As always, and maybe I should just put this in the banner at the top of the page, I know I'm condescending; sorry about that. Also, of course, maybe I'm completely wrong about this woman.)