After we broke up and I had begun seeing someone else from our same social circle, instead of bowing out gracefully, he made a habit of following me around our group’s favorite bar and standing about three or four feet away from me and commenting to his friends on our brief relationship. Most often, he would comment on how part of the reason I had declined his attempts to get back together were that I had found someone I really liked but that I always showed up to the bar alone. Whether he knew that the reason for that was because my new boyfriend was busy in rehearsal for a new play or not, I noticed that once the play’s run ended and the boyfriend returned, a lot of that talk stopped. He found someone else also, a girl about a year older than me who did not seem to mind the age difference as much as I did. I didn’t hate him, mostly just pitied him, and hoped that his new relationship would squash the pain of our breakup, which it did. Until I broke up with the new guy for good and he stopped coming around that bar (for different reasons), and pathetic old guy #1 again began the chortling and passive-aggressive rage directed into my general direction but never at me, or to me, and that finally ended one night when his best friend (a devout lesbian who had been listening to this talk for almost three years by this point) dumped a bottle of Schlitz over his head, walked away, and told me that I was perfectly in the right for dumping him.

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