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Sympathy For The Devil

Last week, I out to dinner with an old friend and we discovered that we both know a short, roly-poly balding guy who is certainly no Tatum Channing in the looks department. My friend had worked with him, and Wingman had coached with him.  Her observation about him was "That pig." He should rot in hell for the way he behaves." (He hit on her while being married to a nice, roly-poly woman.)

Funny thing is that I had the same experience with that guy and had wished for the same outcome for him. But if you were to ask the priest who was my high school religion teacher, he'd say it was my friend's fault and mine.  But not Roly-Poly's because according to him, men are innocent of all actions when it comes to being around women.  Which makes women responsible for everything from the Kennedy assassination to global warming. And me responsible for the bad judgement of men for over 30 years...

When I worked for the candy company, I traveled with mostly men as there weren't many women in the food industry.  At a Fancy Food Show, a colleague asked me to help him get samples from his hotel room for give-aways. He excused himself for a moment as I gathered his bags and boxes. On his return to the room, he asked me what I thought and I looked up over the loaded handcart. His arms were spread, his pants were off and he was naked from the waist down.

I thought he should develop cancer of the testicles and die.

Wingman and I made friends with a couple who owned a business just like ours in another town.  We would help them with waitresses and servers, and they would do the same for us.  We even had them to our home for Christmas dinner.  One day, we met at the wholesale food store and the wife said "Make sure you wish Dirtbag (A/K/A her husband) a happy birthday.  He's 40 today".  I went to give him a kiss and he stuck his tongue in my mouth.  When I told Wingman, he couldn't stop laughing, but it ruined a beautiful work relationship.

And Roly-Poly was another one.  Wingman liked him so much that we changed where we went to the beach so our families could be close.  And how could you not like a Weeble family who always had plenty of food and drinks at their cabana? One Sunday, Roly-Poly needed some party supplies from a storage locker and asked me to help him, being the party expert that I was. He made his move with my arms loaded with tiki torches.  I dropped them and ran, wishing I had a match as torch fuel spilled all around him. I never told Wingman about that one, but insisted that we cancel our membership to that beach club the following year.

The last two guys have reinvented themselves professionally, but personally haven't changed their spots. A woman who waitressed for us said that Dirtbag hits on most of his much younger female help these days, and Roly-Poly tried with my friend among others. Both have daughters and if Karma has anything to do with it, these girls are sure to meet a guy "just like dear old dad".

I know most guys aren't like the ones above, and I feel sorry for men because rats like these give the rest such a bad name.  Since last year, I can't begin to thank all the guys who have come to my rescue.  From the guys who visited Wingman in the hospital to the friend who helped me sort through hundreds of thousands of dollars of his medical bills.  The guys who carted out a whole floor of wet furniture and belongings and the ones who helped me rebuild. Friends inviting me to dinner, even the man currently rebuilding Wingman's warped Rickenbacker bass.  They rock.

Then again, there's the new widower. A guy who I struck up a conversation with who told me about a divorcee who has been hounding him to go out to dinner.  I told him to take his time, it was too early in the game to be thinking about women.  Told him to take a year off.  He thanked me...and then the phone calls started.  And the text messages.  And now I'm dreaming of his dead wife, enraged like Fruma-Sarah in Fiddler on the Roof about her husband already attempting to flirt with a woman. 

And I can't help but wonder if I should be feeling sorry for the guy...

Or, like in Laurel and Hardy, punish myself for another nice mess I've gotten myself into.



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