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Even Judy Blume Couldn't Save this Relationship
Comedian Jen Kirkman shares a particularly misguided attempt at reconciliation
by Jen Kirkman
Spring came and went. I found myself still thinking about Thomas and doing drive-bys past his apartment complex. I know that when someone in Los Angeles claims to do a drive-by, that person usually has gold teeth and a hit rap song, but I just mean that I was circling his block to make sure his car was in the driveway so I could come to the auspicious conclusion that Thomas was home, forlorn and missing me.
On our first date Thomas had told me that his most cherished book from childhood was Judy Blume's Superfudge. The night that Thomas and I ended our relationship (aka when he dumped me as I cried snots out of my eyes on his bedroom floor and begged him to reconsider), he told me that he wanted to reconnect with his childhood and that he had lost himself.
One evening in May, after not having been Thomas's girlfriend for eight weeks, six days, and four hours, I decided that I'd cement myself as a shoo-in for the Museum of Most Romantic Gestures. I went on a hunt for a hardcover copy of Superfudge. At the Barnes & Noble cash register, my eyes welled up as I thought about the very John-Hughes-movie moment I was about to enact. I sat in my car outside of Thomas's house, inscribing the inside front cover with "Dear Thomas, you haven't lost yourself. He was here all along." I took a moment of silence to be moved by my sentiment—and briefly wondered whether he would have preferred it written in my blood.
I walked up to his door and at the last minute realized that just dropping the book off would leave our fate up to chance. I wanted to present the one-of-a-kind Superfudge to Thomas in person, watch him read the dedication in front of me, and then collapse into my arms with cries of, "You've changed my life! I was such a fool to let you go. Come inside my apartment and come inside my . . . heart. We'll set fire to the Hallmark Hariette nightstand and build our own future with a nice bedroom ensemble from IKEA. Listen, we can't afford anything better right now, but surprisingly they have many bedroom furniture options that don't look like plywood and thick cardboard that's been Scotch-taped together. I may have a nervous breakdown about my lack of manhood when I'm forced to assemble the nightstands with three beers in my system and a faulty Allen wrench, but we'll get through it!" I knocked. Thomas opened the door, saw me, and slammed the door in my face. I heard him frantically affix the door chain.
He yelled from behind the safety of this barricade, "Give me a minute!" I heard whispering. I heard a hysterical girl accuse, "Who is that?" I heard Thomas answer, "Hariette, go into the bedroom. This will only take a second." Thomas unchained the door and opened it. He looked at me and whispered loudly, "What?" I handed him the book. I guess I thought that it was worth a try even though it was probably not the best idea to rekindle a relationship with someone who had another girl over and who had just slammed a door in my face.
He took the book and studied it. I started to explain. "Thomas, you once said this was your favorite book from childhood and—"
"Oh, Jen," he said. He didn't say "Oh, Jen" in a romantic "Take me, Jen!" way, but more like I had just spilled oatmeal on the floor from my high chair. He pitied me and knew that it was pointless to yell because I clearly didn't know better. "It's over, Jen." He handed the book back to me. I became indignant. If you would just reread Superfudge, Thomas, you would know that you and I were meant to be together. I have no idea what the fuck even two words are from Superfudge, but I have my heart set on this dramedy I've written in my head and there can be no rewrites.