I dated an elf once. Not the nice kind. I mean the impy little elf that steals your left socks from the dryer and hides your keys when you’re late for work.
He was cute though, in a weird way. I’m not sure why, but WOO, I wanted to dunk him in my coffee. He was physically fit, same age as me, both going to the same college, both liked anime, and he made me laugh. He seemed like a good idea at the time.
But then the weird things started coming out.
His mom still bought his clothes. Nobody would begrudge a broke college student a bit of family help. But she bought him WINNIE THE POOH BOXERS, and he WORE THEM. TO BED. If his mom was trying to stifle his chances at getting laid, IT WORKED.
And his cockamamie ideas about money. Like, “Hey, one of my friends is abandoning his house to foreclosure. He said we could live there rent-free for like, six months before the sheriff locks up the house! Do you want to?”
The Elf told me stories, doubled over in laughter, that horrified me. Like the time he wrapped a sister’s hotly anticipated Christmas gift CD in duct tape until it resembled a bowling ball. Or the time he sprayed the stairs with Pledge so his sisters would slip and fall down them.
Impy Elf prided himself as being an agent of chaos. “Chaos makes life more interesting.” One evening, he offered to come over to do a few chores for me while I finished a midterm paper.
A loud splash startled me – he was pouring chlorinated water into my fish tank.
“The water level looked a bit low,” he said with an impish grin.
He also shrunk all my sweaters in the dryer, and put the clean dishes away in the wrong cupboards. And I don’t mean, ‘OMG, he put the condiment bowls on the wrong side of the soup bowls.’ No. He put the saucepans under the sink, the plates on top of the fridge, and the cups in the spice cabinet.
How does someone wreak so much domestic havoc in one hour?
He started acting more squirrelly than usual toward the end of the semester. Our conversations went like this:
“Hey, how’s it going? Do you want to hang out later?”
“No, I need to finish my final projects.”
“Oh OK. How are they coming along?”
“Not well. I have two months of coding to do in two days.”
“It’s OK, I’ll just turn them in late. My teachers love me, I’m sure they’ll still accept them.”
As it turned out, his teachers DIDN’T accept his late, half-assed homework and failed him. He stopped by my apartment to hang out for a while, and checked his final grades at my computer. He announced he was now expelled from school, since he had already been on probation. He also let slip that he spent Finals Week marathon-watching an anime series. He left my house deflated. But he didn’t log out of his school transcript, so I looked at it.
It turned out the Elf had attended different colleges for eleven years in a row, and was still only a junior. He flunked out three previous times. And his “major,” Computer Science? He had not actually passed any Computer Science classes. All his credits were in random subjects. Junior in Computer Science, my ass!
“Dude, why do you keep going to college if you keep goofing off and flunking out?”
“Because one day, I want to own a bakery. And if I get a computer science degree, I can save up for my own shop.”
I can’t even imagine what sort of mental gymnastics would be required for that to seem logical.
Three days later, my credit card was locked for suspicious activity. To amuse himself at my apartment, the Elf (without my knowledge or consent) downloaded a pirating app on my computer, loaded with a virus that stole my credit card info while I bought books for next semester. Some jackwad in the UK put $5,000 in guitar gear on my card.
I broke up with the Elf, FINALLY. There was nothing even remotely sensible in continuing the relationship. He took it easily enough, but on Valentine’s Day, he did call to invite me out on a date – to eat mashed potatoes with Amish people. He said they were really good mashed potatoes. You know, for Valentine’s Day.
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