Day Thirty-Four   /   lettering by Jessica Hische

Jessica Walsh

Did you see Timothy today?
Yes.

What did y’all do together?
After work I had a dinner planned with my friend Veza at Pure Food and Wine. Tim had a work meeting. He texted me around 9:30 to meet in my building’s lobby. Right as I got the text, I was getting out of a cab. I saw him standing in line at the market below my apartment building. I snuck into the market, ran up behind him and surprised him with a big hug and kiss. I also gave him a card that I made him. I bought him a chocolate sundae as a takeaway treat from my dinner. He was very excited about this, and scarfed down his pasta and the ice cream within minutes of walking into my apartment.

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Did anything interesting happen?
After he ate, Tim talked about going to a work related party on Thursday night at a gallery. Only an hour before, a guy friend of mine told me he was going to this party with his new girlfriend, someone who I thought Tim had dated last year. I thought I should give Tim the heads up that this girl might also be at the party, to avoid any awkwardness. Tim started grilling me intensely to find out more information. He was upset that I thought he had dated her. I was under this impression since he took me to a party at Miami Art Basel once just so he could meet up with her. When we were flying back from Miami, we were talking about girls that he was seeing at the time, and he named her. I remember the entire trip vividly.

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Tim wanted to know exactly what I told my friend about this girl. I couldn’t remember the exact wording of the conversation, which upset him. He was pressuring me to remember the conversation verbatim, and it became more and more heated. As he got angrier, I started to withdraw and shut down. This only aggravated him more. I was beginning to feel defeated. I mixed up some small irrelevant detail, and next thing I knew he was calling me a liar. Honesty is one of the most important things to me. I just never lie. Even if I wanted to lie, I’m one of those people who just can’t. You can read it all over my face.

I tried to step outside of the situation and analyze what was really going on. I think Tim was experiencing anxiety about his past. It was once again coming back to haunt him, and he’s very worried about his reputation now. It’s a defense mechanism. He began displacing the conversation and projecting the “bad guy” feelings onto me.

Did you learn anything new about Timothy?
I know how these stupid misunderstandings can ruin relationships. I’ve had fights with exes, woken up the next morning and couldn’t even remember what the disagreement was about. I expressed my interest in dropping the subject. I started to rub his neck, and gave him a big hug. Personally, when I am sad or upset, this “hug it out” strategy always seems to work. And it did! We started hugging and kissing and the mood lightened back up within one minute.

Did you learn anything new about yourself?
I have gotten much better in my life about about stepping back from miscommunication and drama in order to see the bigger picture. This wasn’t always the case. In earlier relationships, I could get lost in an argument and I wouldn’t drop it. I’d let it consume me. I don’t feel the need to win arguments or feel right or wrong anymore, I am more interested in keeping the peace. I feel good about this.

How do you feel about this relationship/project right now?
The makeup sex that followed was great! Who doesn’t love makeup sex? Also, apparently Tim hasn’t masturbated the entire 35 days. No wonder he was so tense before!

Is there anything that you want to do differently?
I watched a documentary the other day which explained how the human brain can only store so much information. There is so much data going on around us at every moment, it’s impossible to process everything. As humans we are constantly making unconscious decisions about what is relevant. I already feel overwhelmed with all the knowledge and interesting ideas I want to absorb. I have no interest in wasting valuable brain space on “he-said-she-said” gossip drama. I hate that Tim and I wasted an hour fighting about it.

Additional comments?
Veza sent me one of Eleanor Roosevelt’s quotes. It’s a nice reminder of where to keep the focus.

greatmindsfinal

Day Thirty-Four   /   lettering by Erik Marinovich

Timothy Goodman

Did you see Jessica today?
Yes.

What did y’all do together?
I went to her place around 9:30 PM. The plan was for me to sleep over. I emailed her during the day to tell her that I was coming over. I was excited about it!

Did anything interesting happen?
We began arguing the first minute I saw her. She brought me some ice cream, and then she told me about a guy she knows who had just started dating a girl I was once mildly talking to. When I say mild, I mean mild. I never even kissed this girl. We hung out a couple times, had some laughs, and that was it. I asked Jessie what exactly she told this guy, but her answers seemed suspicious to me. I continued to ask her about it, and she started to contradict herself. I felt like she was lying.

Outside of all that, this whole thing really just bothers me. I can’t speak for all men, but if I was in his position, and had just started dating a girl I was excited about, the LAST thing I’d want is for someone to tell me gossip about her. Why go there? Jessie doesn’t seem to have a filter sometimes.

And more importantly, I never even dated this girl! So on top of Jessie blurting this stuff out to him, what she told him was something that wasn’t even true. This creates a couple of problems:

(1) If the girl hears this, she might think I was lying about what actually happened between us — which was nothing. (2) The next time I see this dude, he might be weird with me because he thinks I dated his girl — which I didn’t. (And I know he cares, because when Jessie told him, he texted his girlfriend to ask if she and I had ever dated.) It’s a recipe for awkwardness for everyone, and it could have all been avoided if Jessie didn’t say something.

Maze

Anyway, we argued about this for a good hour. Admittedly, it was the stupidest argument ever. But I couldn’t let it go. I felt like she lied to me and I just wanted her to ADMIT that she lied to me. I’m like the police: I can have all the evidence, but I want a confession! Ha! Really, I just wanted her to take some responsibility for what happened. But Jessie can be stubborn sometimes, refusing to see things my way. Then, of course, she felt attacked because she hates confrontation. Then it turned around on me. Things got heated. I threatened to leave. She said sorry. I said sorry. I ate some ice cream. We talked. We hugged. We made out. We had sex. We went to bed.

Did you learn anything new about Jessica?
Jessie famously brushes any conflict off by simply dismissing me as “sensitive.” Her new line is, “it’s not a big deal, Tim,” in this condescending tone. Nothing drives me up a wall more than this stuff. Sometimes I feel like we’re two aliens, from different planets with different languages, trying to communicate via Skype without electricity. Sigh.

Did you learn anything new about yourself?
I can’t believe I haven’t figured this out until now, but Jessie is totally a “tricky girl!” I’m literally having a epiphany right now! Jessie has all the characteristics of a tricky girl: pretty, quiet, complicated, talented, and mysterious. She’s completely unaware, yet willing to make her mind up at the drop of a hat. She is Annie Hall, Felicity Porter, Clementine Kruczynski, and Patricia Franchini all rolled into one.

Tricky

The tricky girl thing is totally my Achilles’ heel. I’m at this kind of girl’s mercy. You can NEVER tell what’s on a tricky girl’s mind. The tricky girl will unknowingly rip your heart out, cut it into little pieces, and then ask you, politely, if she can feed you. I’ve fallen hard for girls like this in the past. I guess I’ve always known this about her, but now that we’re in this relationship, I’m seeing it in a whole different light. Everything that happened tonight was a classic tricky girl situation. I’ve dated girls like this before, and it always drove me nearly mad. And the funny thing is that one man’s tricky girl doesn’t necessarily make her another man’s. Someone else might date Jessie and not see ANY of this. A tricky girl is situational, and circumstantial. It depends on all parties involved. I’m not built for a tricky girl. Oh dear.

How do you feel about this relationship/project right now?
I hate to make her a trope, because she’s clearly an amazing three-dimensional person. But this is blowing my mind right now. We have some fundamental differences we need to work through. I guess that’s what relationships are about, right?

Is there anything that you want to do differently?
I don’t want to attack her. And I don’t want her to feel attacked by me when we have disagreements. I think a lot of this stems from us having to seeing each other every day. It’s hard, y’all.

Additional comments?
She gave me a really sweet note in the beginning of the night. She knows I geek on Winnie-The-Pooh, so I could care less about this fight we had. Besides, we’ll be in Disney World in a couple days!

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