I made up a boyfriend once.
I was in grade seven. Here’s how it went down…
Okay, in grades five and six, I had this best friend, let’s call her Edie. We were super tight, talk on the phone all the time, hang out constantly BFFs. Everything was awesome. Plus, she never stabbed me in the back. So everything was perfect. But then as grade six came to a close, we learned that we wouldn’t be going to the same junior high.
See, I was going to the junior high just a few blocks away from my elementary school (A.K.A. the worst junior high ever), but Edie’s mom was making her go to a different one. I can’t remember if it was a Catholic junior high or if it was just closer to where her family lived. It doesn’t matter; all you need to know is we were being SPLIT UP.
It was a big deal.
We would get together and cry about it. It was the end of an era, after all. How would we hang out as much if we couldn’t hang out during class, between class, and at lunch hour? There was no way we would get sufficient hang-time. No way.
We made a pact to stay in touch like, all the time. We would call each other every night (this was before mobile phones, kids!), and we would get together after school as many times a week as possible.
Basically, we would do our best to make sure nothing changed at all.
But then grave seven started and that didn’t happen.
Within a few months, Edie had morphed into some cool, overly made-up chick with bleached, straightened hair and a boyfriend, and I was still a loser kid who sometimes had garlic breath. I had made some new friends, however, and I decided that I wasn’t going to let Edie show me up.
My friend Sadie (A.K.A. the worst friend ever – we’ll talk about her later) had an older half-brother named…Sean? (It’s hilarious that I can’t remember his name since we were in imaginary LOVE, but let’s just call him Sean.) He wore eyeliner and got into lots of trouble, so basically he was my “Leader of the Pack” bad boy dream. I met him once and he was a total asshole to me, but I somehow brushed it off and pretended he liked me anyway.
Sadie was keen on helping me look better than Edie – probably because she was a crazy bitch – so she gave me one of Sean’s school pictures and helped me create a back story. Within a week, I had created an epic romance that involved a lot of flirting and giggling and being given black roses (black roses – I was such a fucking cliche) and I had told Edie all about it.
And while she totally should have been like:
She bought it.
There was just one problem, though.
I should have written my shitty romance down on paper, because I started to forget my back story and skew the details. Every time I spoke to Edie, I made edits I didn’t mean to make. She’d ask questions I didn’t anticipate and my split-second improvisations were doing me NO favours. I think I might have accidentally told her Sean was originally from Hawaii at one point. Oops.
Then she started asking about getting together and I realized my time with Sean was up. Our relationship was doomed.
So I invented the break-up.
Couldn’t even tell you what he did to break my heart, but since I was 13, I’m gonna say he winked at another girl or something, A.K.A. he CHEATED ON ME. That good for nothing so and so!
The whole thing faded over time, along with my friendship with Edie, but the experience taught me something: you shouldn’t invent fake boyfriends. Except for when some creepy guy is asking you out at the mall while you’re on a break from your stupid retail job, and all you want to do is get a bubble tea and go back to work because working is better than wandering around a loud mall filled with people. Then you tell him all about your boyfriend, who is in the army (is it called the army in Canada?) and has an extremely jealous personality.*
Looking back, I’m pretty sure Edie told me her boyfriend’s name was Darko McKnight or something equally unbelievable, so I’m pretty sure he didn’t exist either.
*For the record, that story did not repel the creepy guy asking me out. All he said was, “Yeah, but I can come over when he’s not home – I won’t tell him if you won’t.” And then he followed me to work, had to be invited to leave (A.K.A. kicked out) by one of my co-workers, and essentially mall-stalked me for another few weeks. Charming.