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An Anti-Valentine: The Girl Who Stopped My Watch

There are some people you’re just not destined to get along with.

There’s a particularly grating young lady who falls into that category for me. You know the type: One of her parents is European, so,never mind that she spent high school on the West Coast and talks about registering to vote here; she won’t shut up about how she’s European and how awful all the politicians are, how she distrusts business, and how it’s so much better across the Atlantic.

Makes you wonder if she hates it here so much, why doesn’t she do everyone else’s ears a favor and just go home? Oh, the joys of the faux-continental.

It would seem her opinion of me is even lower than mine of her. Not so long ago, I wandered into an academic function. As I took my first bite out of the Indian veggie pocket they had laid out, I was confronted by our ex-pat wannabe heroine, who was kind enough to say to me, “Nobody here likes you. You should leave.”

I continued chewing, considered the source, and replied, “Kiss my ass.” Then I took another bite and turned around so as to better ignore her.

A few seconds later, I could hear a stammering behind me: “I … I … would never kiss your ass.”

The poor dear must have taken me literally. So much for Old World sophistication.

Quite recently, I was enjoying an Irish brew on a Saturday night when who should walk in but Little Miss Thing. I pointed this out to a crony of mine, who was almost as disappointed to see her as I was … possibly more so, as he’d been having a bad day and saw his relaxation slipping away as she slinked in.

My crony’s initial instinct was to drink up and leave. I’d have no part of that. It’s bad form to vacate a watering hole you’re enjoying just because a twit walks in. Etiquette dictated we could not leave the place before she did. It’s a matter of principle.

I decided the appropriate thing to do would be to send over a drink — the friendly way of saying, “Yes, I know you’re here, and I was here first.”

So gracious was Her Highness that she walked the drink back over to me, claiming her roommate had bought me one in return. (The bartenders said otherwise.)

Having confirmed that we still couldn’t stand each other, I glanced at my watch, wondering how much longer my air would be polluted.

I discovered, much to my growing irritation, that my watch had stopped. Not only had it stopped, but it seemed to have stopped the moment my not-quite-little-friend had walked into the room.

That, I thought, was a bad omen. My crony said it confirmed his suspicions of the young lady’s being on the unholy side.

We went back to drinking, and eventually the interloper left the building. After she was gone, I glanced down at my watch, annoyed with the thought of having to find a battery for it in the morning.

To my shock, the watch had started working again.

As I twisted the knob to correct the time, I did the math; it seemed that my watch had resumed ticking just as the Queen of Manners exited the premises.

It would seem I’ve found someone so annoying, she can actually stop my watch. I can only take this as a divine sign that I shouldn’t be sending her flowers.

Happy Valentine’s Day, and may your timepiece keep on ticking.

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