Wednesday, May 28, 2008

The Ol' Switcheroo (Goose/Gander cont.)

The average age of an American male at the time of his first marriage hovers around 27; for women, it's 25. And whether ready or not, many people nearing, at, or above these averages feel immense, intense familial and/or societal pressure to, for some reason, get married. Perhaps that pressure is self-imposed, but nonetheless it lingers over nearly all non-married cohabitating couples. 

But the matrimonial pressure to suddenly wed, in this slice of the world at least, is dwarfed by the artistic pressure to enter engagement in style. I read a recent study that showed the very first question asked of most newly engaged women is "How'd he do it?," while the first asked of men is "So should I, like, not jerk it to her anymore?" In this life, it's not the engagement that counts, it's the proposal.

Some men hide the ring in a forthcoming dessert dish, or they drop it into a champagne glass. Some lure their future betrothed out of the apartment and have friends and family decorate their shared living space in the couple's absence. I've always been partial to the scavenger hunt full of personal memories and locations around a particular city, as we'll re-visit in a moment. 

These thoughtful, if schmaltzy, engagements have become the norm (again, at least in our nape of the geographic neck). And yet I've never quite figured out why more people haven't put this much creativity into breakups. Seriously, how flippin' sweet would it be to apply the same effort and wit into calling off a long relationship as cementing one in holy matrimony? It'll be ever more special if the dumpee doesn't see it coming, expecting a ring instead of heartache. 

An example: Take a moment to watch this video. Classic switcheroo.

I have no clue whether or not that's real or fake; but, either way that's not especially germane to the broader argument. The guest's partner at home is expecting the big proposal. The hosts are expecting the big proposal. Everyone else watching is expecting the big proposal. And then, BAM, the big fuck you, a metaphorical Cleveland Steamer right onto her heaving chest. Brilliant. 

So why hasn't this practice become a breakup mainstay? People would really rather talk and weep and snot up for three hours, not even really listening to each other? Please, that's awful. I'd think, as heartbroken as the poor unsuspecting dope would be, even they'd have to laugh at this temporary sparkle of genius from their former partner.

Picture it: Significant others head to brunch on a sunny pre-Summer afternoon. One gets up to use the restroom but stealthily leaves to wait at an undisclosed location. The waitron approaches the deserted party with the first clue on a grand scavenger hunt around the city. The impromptu table for one believes the day of engagement hath arrived. 

After a six-clue nostalgia parade, the couple is reunited at their favorite spot. Maybe it's under a tree, where they first French kissed (or Freedom kissed, if you're still boycotting the Francs). He's on bended knee, and smiling. And just as he reaches into his pocket, seemingly to fetch a box-encased ring, our man pulls out nothing but his extended middle finger. He stands up slowly and nonchalantly waves it in his significant other's frozen face. As the tears begin to well up, he mouths "It's over," puts his headphones in his ears and walks away whistling. One would have to be stunned, but they'd also have to chuckle.

Or perhaps you can get the Yankee Stadium announcer to project: "Ladies and gentlemen. Please turn your attention to Section 27, as [insert cunning bastard here] has a special message for the person sitting next to him." Fifty-five thousand folks hush and search for you guys; the scoreboard operator puts you on screen. Then when it seems like all eyes are upon you, that's when you spill two $9.75 Miller Lites on her and storm off into the tunnel. Winner.

Message sent. In style.

I'm guessing most of you have indulged this fantasy, so come clean, how would you pull this off? What's your preferred method of calling the whole thing off as wickedly as possible? Spill it.

17 comments: said...

Doing it via a comment on a blog is definitely the way to go!

Mr. Svenska said...

You're in a third-world developing country and you've met the girl of your dreams. Sweet, innocent, etc, etc. But things go sour and you've got to bail. You tell her you're going to take her back to America with you! She's enthralled, of course.

You get to the airport, tickets in hand, only for her to realize that all you did was make a xerox copy of your ticket and she can't board. She's standing at the security check-point as you go through. And just as you go out of sight, you give her the middle finger over the shoulder, never looking back.

That's so terrible, I can't believe i just conceived that.

Owen Kahn said...

We waited a year for discussions like this.

Slack, we missed your mean-hearted negativity. The Interwebs was almost too nice of a place there for a while.

My style? Just change the locks and act like the girl's a complete stranger. "I'm sorry, who did you say you were looking for?"

neeko said...

along the lines of Owens style, I'd love to try what i call the "It's a Wonderful Life" breakup... you pay off all of your neighbors and anyone who might know yer SO to pretend they've never heard of that person. If you could get the girls family in on it too, you'd be a real success, but that might require some significant payoffs...

Phiul said...

I broke up with someone once by doing the unthinkable: telling them the truth. I told her I wasn't into her anymore and was still in love with my ex-girlfriend.

So this chick starts freaking out on me, telling me what an asshole I am, etc.

So I turned the tables and started calling her names and telling her what bullshit it is that she was giving me crap. I remember the conversation ended with me saying:

"Next time I'll stay together with you, continue having sex all the time while starting a 'safety' relationship with someone else. After I've solidified that more-enjoyable relationship (all while enjoying fucking 2 women), I'll break up with you and tell you something like 'it's not you, it's me'".

I apologized to her for telling her the truth.

I hate women.

Dave Lozo said...

it's her birthday. you surprise her at her office with flowers. everyone gathers around laughing, clapping. you hug and whisper into her ear, "i love you so much." you then tell her you have a special video tape (i guess this takes place in 1995) that you want to show her. it's a surprise, you say.

with everyone gathered around, eating the fudgie the whale ice cream cake you brought with you, the movie starts. it's you in front of the camera, up close, saying, "hi, angel. i have so much i want to tell you, but i don't know how to put it in words. so i thought this tape would really show how i feel." you show the camera a picture of your girlfriend and kiss it. everyone in the office awwwwwwws.

you prop the camera on the tripod and run out from behind. you're totally naked. you jump into bed. the people in the office watching are nervous and giggling. you make a joke about your penis size while your girlfriend blushes just to ease the tension.

on the tape, you yell, "ok, i'm ready." out from the bathroom comes your girlfriend's father, who you proceed to have hot passionate sex with. all the while, you are giving the finger to the picture you just kissed.

after climaxing on her dad's back, you stand up, walk over to the camera, still half-erect, and say, "you shouldn't have made such a big fucking deal about the toilet seat being up. your shit is in the street outside the apartment," and the tape cuts to snow.

with everyone in the office laying their eyes on you in utter disbelief, you calmly shovel the final piece of fudgie the whale into your mouth and ask if her office validates parking.

annnnnnnd scene.

Matty Mac said...

adding to Lozo's comment, which was genius, it would be great if acted a sort of a double "fuck you". Just before the tape cuts out, dad turns to it and says "oh, by the way honey, I like dudes. Always have. The strap-on thing wasn't just to 'spice things up'. I really love it in the ass."

Some mom and daughter are subsequently fucked.

Ace Cowboy said...

Lozo, that's so twisted that it's pure genius.

Dave Lozo said...

i'm glad you liked it. consider it your welcome home present.

Lizzle said...

I've become convinced that Lozo is an evil genius... As are you for getting this dialogue going.

As a woman, I have to admit that if a guy took the time and put forth the effort to break up with me in this fashion, sure I'd be embarrassed and pissed, but I'll be damned if I didn't shrug and give him a little chuckle for the twist.

That kind of rationality is what separates me from most women though.

Boxcar Fritz said...

And then you murder the fucking cunt.


Michael David said...

Lozo, how do you persuade the girlfriend's father to go along?

I have always thought, seriously, that someone should actually develop the technology used in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.

The Nug said...

I think I just Came! Fudgie the Whale makes my nipples perky. Probably because the only way my girlfriend will go down on me is if I smear Fudgie the Whale all over my happy trail. I don't know much but I do know this.

The "Fudgie goatee" is magical.

Adam said...

Scott H said...

I'm sure you heard about the one where the guy taped photos of his fiancee doing the best man under all of the seats at the wedding reception, told all of the guests there was a special surprise in there, watched everyone look in stunned horror, then turned to her said "Fuck you", then him, "Fuck you" and left.

Anyway, I have heard a tale or two of someone turning the tables on someone who is just a bitch or jackass and treating them to the behavior that caused the breakup in the first place. Mostly though, I hear of bitter women doing petty and destructive things, but in those cases, both of them were usually intolerable.

Rupert Entwistle said...

This is so easy.

"Honey, grab your passport and wear a pretty dress, I have a very special surprise for you."

We board the silver stretch and ride in style down to the Brooklyn Bridge at sunrise. I prpoose with on the bridge with the skyline as a backdrop.

Then we go into the city clerk's office, pay 35 bucks, get the license, and hit the onsite chapel, and 15 minutes later it's all over.

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