This is it! This will be the year I seduce, lure, tempt, beguile, coax, and sweet-talk my standoffish (okay, not just standoffish, but really rotten and sometimes evil!) roommate into not just accepting me, but loving me completely, dare I say unconditionally? Because all the time we’ve been together so far, I’ve felt nothing but pure disdain.
It’s going to be an extremely difficult job, but I don’t care. None of the other advice from other people has ever worked. In fact most of the things I’ve read from the experts on how to handle this particular situation have said I should just “recognize, accept, deal with, try to tame, silence, ignore, chastise, or banish completely.”
But those ideas are just not working and the last one isn’t even feasible at all. When you encounter this particular determined personality type, they usually stay in your life forever — mainly out of sheer force of habit.
Oh it’s true — a few smart people have told me I should “Embrace!” or “Make friends with!” and I think they’re on the right track so that’s why I’m taking it one step further — and I’m about to inspire a mad, passionate love affair with . . . my Inner Critic! (Herein known as ‘IC’)
I’ll start slowly as anyone who has tried to woo a reluctant someone knows to do….with a casual first date. And I’ll wait to make sure IC is in a good mood before I broach the idea.
I would like to invite you for a nice pasta dinner and some lovely conversation. Please let me know if you’d be receptive to this.
Dear Stuffy Stephie (that’s IC’s nickname for me from when I was a young highly allergic child and was always congested)
You suck! You can’t cook to save your life and you shouldn’t be eating carbs because you’re fat. Plus I’m not wasting my time talking to someone who is completely unrealistic about their writing career taking off.”
Thanks but no thanks, Loser!
So my Inner Critic was playing hard-to-get. This just served to fuel my fire and desire! And I decided to pull out all the stops and simply trap IC into not only a special dinner date, but an entire night of wonderful Self Care which I’d recently read about in Cosmopolitan magazine.
I cleaned my entire house even though IC decided to hide the vacuum from me and later on resorted to scattering white fluffy stuff all over the sofa, though that might’ve been my persian kitty.
I took great pains with my appearance and dressed nicely even while IC stared into the mirror and ran down the list of problems with my looks. 80’s outdated hair, check. Wrinkles, check. Large pores. Really? Yep, check. Upper arm flab, check. Sagging breasts, check. . . Okay IC is quite the scintillating conversationalist and I know it’s rude to interrupt, but I was determined to carry on. I put on my favorite song (Queen: Don’t Stop Me Now) and that seemed to change the mood of things somewhat as IC begrudgingly danced around my bedroom with me.
Ten minutes later, we were interrupted briefly when my friend Tiffany called to see if I wanted to go listen to her sing Karaoke. I told her I was actually on a “hot” date, which was true since IC and I were both perspiring from sweating to the oldies (the last two songs blasting — “She’s a Maniac” from the movie Flashdance, and “Let’s Get Physical” by Olivia Newton John) Tiffany asked if it was a sure thing? Without hesitation, I said “Ohhhh, definitely!” and she hung up sounding quite envious.
Of course my boyfriend called immediately after that (Tiffany can’t keep anything to herself) and said, “Tell the guy you’re with that I’m wishing him good luck – he’ll need it.” and I responded, “My date is actually a difficult and hard-to-please female” and without missing a beat he said, “Spending the night alone? Well let me know how that works out for ya,” and hung up. Gotta admire such confidence!
From there, things slowly went downhill. IC balked at my food, (calling it fattening and empty calories so we just drank a protein shake) fooled around with the remote control, (not finding Schitts Creek on Netflix or Handmaids Tale on Hulu to be the least bit interesting) and became contradictory when we talked about trying to write and submit a One Act play for a couple of local theaters.
But IC didn’t stop there in her efforts to sabotage the evening. She even had the nerve to make loud booing and hissing noises during the ultimate self-care part of the night…masturbation. (Uh…Cosmo magazine, remember?)
Undaunted, I asked IC out the next night to accompany me to an evening of Improv where I was supposed to go onstage and be funny with six other outgoing people. Turns out I excelled at that and they crowned me “Queen of Self-Deprecating Humor” (thanks to all the put-downs emanating from IC) and made me part of their team.
Make no mistake, I’m nowhere close to proposing a lifetime commitment yet, and IC will probably fling any future engagement ring across the room and spit the champagne into my face, but I’m very hopeful now that I’m getting strong indications that she’ll admire my creative writing if it’s for my suicide note, my will, my eulogy, my obituary, or even bad reviews of Tiffany’s karaoke singing. Also she’s dropping big hints that the following things really turn her on … a daily dose of the darkest chocolate, a white noise machine at night, and for some reason she really wants to ride along Route 66 on a Harley. Okay….whatever, girlfriend!