Idea Bank #50: The first time I felt jealousy…

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Hehe…this was actually very recently–like 2 weeks ago.

We’d just gotten back from our trip and BF was out running a mess of tows when someone knocked on the door. Usually the only people that knock on his door are Jehovah’s Witnesses, so that’s what I was expecting when I opened it. Standing there was a relatively tall, nicely dressed, pretty Asian lady. I figured she was a JW, but then her spiel didn’t make any sense. Her accent was thick and even though I’m pretty good at deciphering what people are trying to say, I wasn’t prepared to change gears, so I was only catching every 3rd word. Here’s my understanding of the conversation as it took place:

She wanted to speak with BF about doing some electrical work.

  • I told her he doesn’t really do electrical (he’ll dabble in the basics, but no more).
  • She mentioned talking with him awhile ago and him telling her that he could help her on her electrical.
  • I repeated that he doesn’t do electrical (and started wondering when he’d talked to her and why he’d said such a thing).
  • Finally she mentioned something and I realized that she was talking about some other guy in the neighborhood who does electrical (this guy lives next door to her) and that BF had been there when she’d talked to that guy. (This is when it occurred to me that I was feeling jealous of this woman for no good reason, so I put a smile on my face and finally realized what she was talking about).
  • A few weeks before we went on vacation, BF built a shed in the backyard. He knew a guy in the neighborhood is an electrician, so he went over to talk to him about what it’d take to put real electricity in it instead of just an extension cord. This is when the lady on the doorstep met both of them and electrical guy gave her his card, but it’d been a month and she couldn’t get ahold of him. She was wondering if BF could help her locate him because she’d lost electricity in 2 rooms of the house.
  • Once we cleared that up, she mentioned BF telling her about his wonderful “wife”. She complemented me a few times with this name (no he’s never introduced me as such) then told me that if I ever needed to borrow an egg or sugar or something not to hesitate to stop by.

I realize that I haven’t described my feelings of jealousy very well, but that’s because I didn’t recognize them as such at the time. At first it was simple annoyance at having to answer the door just to tell someone yet again that we’re not interested in becoming JW. Then it was annoyance at not knowing why this woman was wanting to contact BF for something he doesn’t do. Her being so smartly dressed while I was lounging around in my PJs after 12pm on a Friday made me feel inadequate especially since she looked like the type to assume I’m BF’s daughter. She looked like someone who might find him attractive and was interested in a date. Who knows what I was thinking. Like I said, I only later realized that I was feeling jealous of her and thinking that she’d better think twice about seeking out a date with BF.

Here’s the thing: BF flirts with everyone! Male, female, it doesn’t matter. Well, I characterize this incorrectly as flirting–let me give you an example. We’re at a restaurant and BF complains about something that was nothing more than human error. He’s not mean about it, but he’s very firm about “the customer being right” even when it doesn’t really matter. As a rule, I don’t complain simply because it’s usually not worth it. There have been times when I’ve been certain that the waitress is going to spit in his food because he can get somewhat annoying and then he’ll say something somewhat charming and suddenly the waitress is offering him free dessert. Not because she’s afraid he’ll complain to corporate and she’s trying to begrudgingly save her job, but there is legitimate friendliness on her face. All I can do is shake my head and laugh. There was a misunderstanding at our favorite sub shop that got way out of hand, so far that I thought the sub maker was going to come across the counter and punch BF and then BAM (not a punch), BF says something and suddenly the sub maker was offering him free chips, shaking his hand, and being all BFF with it feeling 100% authentic.

Heck, before we started dating, I thought he had a thing for my aunt that bowls with us because he’d changed the faucet on her kitchen sink and knew things about her that I didn’t know. Then I thought he was interested in another woman we bowl with. This was all while he was actually very much interested in me, which I had zero clue about. He still doesn’t flirt with me like he does with waitresses, etc. Huh….gotta get on him about this.

Anyway. I’ve never been jealous about his “flirting”. Ever since we started dating, my dad has mostly kept his opinion to himself except for a few times that he’s slipped. One time (early on) was how he flirts with all the ladies. I told my dad that I was well aware of this and explained about the waitresses. BF appreciates my lack of jealousness because his first ex-wife frequently accused him of cheating on her and generally showed a lack of self-esteem whenever he mentioned another woman in any way (a lot of snide remarks about “well, if her cooking’s so good, why don’t you marry her”…stuff like that). Given that he found out that she’d been cheating on him for much of the marriage, yeah.

He did get a good laugh when I told him about being jealous of his “Asian admirer” and took it as a compliment (which he should when it’s an infrequent gut reaction). I took it as a complement a few weeks ago when he made a joke about TJ of some form and I said “the only TJ i like is in Charlottesville” and he got jealous about who this TJ may be. Thomas Jefferson, of course, haha.