Forks and Spoons: Post-breakup peace means sharing turf

My Ex is at large.

When this former uprooted their whole life my freshmen year and moved out to Boston to be closer to me (that was a mistake), and settled into a four-bedroom apartment on Northeastern-infested Mission Hill, I was ecstatic. I was sharing my neighborhood – my turf – with them.

We broke up in the spring of my sophomore year. By Christmas, my Ex moved out to Allston, to be on the turf and the neighborhood of their new Interest.

I eventually got custody of what was rightfully mine: the Hill, Northeastern campus all the way to the Prudential and to CVS on Mass. Ave. They are my stomping grounds.

I got to run amok on its streets and drink in its bars without worrying that I would run into the Ex, and more importantly, the Ex with new Interest, and even more importantly, the Ex with new Interest when I was wasted.

And so it went. Ex got Allston. Fantastic. Why would I ever even go to Allston on purpose? The BU kids wouldn’t know a party if they fell into one.

On the off chance that I tripped onto a B-line train, got sick of stopping every 20 feet, and stumbled off into Allston, I would be intruding. Trespassing. Allston was their neighborhood. Fine. I hate the B-line, anyway.

The only place we have joint custody is Boston Proper. From the back of the Prudential to Fanueil Hall and the North End, all of it is fair game.

But there were no warrants or restraining orders, no cause for a scene and no wide-eyed surprises. I get Boylston on the weekends and they get the Financial District during the week.

We’ve even divided up New York, the whole State of New York. I get most of Albany, save SUNY – like I’d really want that anyway.

I get Manhattan and the Bronx and Brooklyn; Ex gets the 7-train and Queens through Long Island. The one time I was in Manhattan, and I actually got on the 7-train to go to 5th Avenue, I felt like I was violating my parole or something. I was waiting for Ex to walk between cars and catch me on the train.

So we had our neighborhood agreements. Everything was going swimmingly.

Then, my new Interest moved to Allston, too. I’d hop on the 66 bus line and hide from Coolidge Corner all the way down Harvard Avenue.

My friends started going to the bars in Allston when Conor Larkin’s was too crowded.

We’d go to Spike’s Junkyard Dogs on Brighton Avenue and have hot dog eating contests. We’d go to the Sunset Grille for beers and burgers.

I was the only one in ninja-black trying desperately to blend into the walls.

I was breaching my contract.

I dreamed up scenarios and my reactions: very Matrix-style filming – me standing in the middle of the sidewalk and then seeing Ex and having everything stop and hit me from every angle while spinning around in slow motion.

My steps would echo and my cheeks would flare up. But I never know what to do after that.

Do I just give a head nod to two and a half years of my life? Do I smile? Do I say ‘Hi?” Do I hug? Do I stop to talk? Do I even care what Ex has to say? Would Ex even care?

Joint location relationships should come with a prenup.

I saw Ex one night at the Kells on Commonwealth Avenue when I was with my friends.

I had approximately five too many sex-on-the-beaches, and was not at all prepared to act the part where I look at him like he’s missing out on something. I quickly head-nodded and went back into the crowd.

After you get all Ex’s stuff out of your room, out of your brain and out of your heart, the Ex-file isn’t real anymore.

They’re not human. It’s just another event like senior year or turning 21. Seeing the actual person when you aren’t prepared confuses the system. It’s d

Leave a Reply