They say that the average American watches 2.5 hours of TV per day. This is about the equivalent of how long I am on the phone with my ex, Roscoe per day.
If you are old-school and shocked at the whole “friends with exes” thing, let me explain to you the sheer brilliance of remaining platonic besties with your previous long-term boyfriend/girlfriend. All of the partnership “expectations” that perhaps had once created a rollercoaster of accusations, resentment and despair melt away and you are left with the pure, untainted gold nugget of love. Cue the Barry Manilow song “Looks like We Made It”.
Roscoe and I have coined the terms “hus-friend” and wi-friend” in reference to each other. You know, the well-known idiom “work husband” and “work wife”? Hus-friends and wi-friends are become a thing.
It’s when you breakup after a long term relationship but realize that you would still totally take a bullet for each other and that trying to navigate life without this person in it would be like navigating life after having your right arm severed off. So, you become help mates and earth angels for each other.
I’m sure lots of (actual) husbands and wives are like this too, and don’t we all strive to “have it all someday” sigh…But what I’m saying is that hus-friend and wi-friend relationships lack the physical proximity and intimacy of a marriage but are a never-ending well of comfort and emotional-support.
In essence, if you are successful in cultivating a hus-friend/wi-friend dynamic with your beloved ex, then you end up with a person in your life who loves you unconditionally and who is always a call away to help you solve all of the “major world catastrophes” of the day.
A person, I might add, whose dirty dishes don’t end up in your sink…who isn’t there every Friday night to refute your choice of movie…and who you cease to harshly grade on a daily basis for his/her “weak listening skills.”
For instance, in our hus-friend-wi-friend world, it doesn’t phase me in the slightest (like it did in our dating days) when I am bemoaning life’s perils and I can hear Roscoe clicking away as he peruses Facebook from across the phone line. Or if he simply hasn’t interjected for 30 minutes, I just assume now that he is meditating on my every word – like a stoic Buddha – knowing that silence is the greatest wisdom to offer.
Sometimes, Roscoe interjects my diatribes with meows in various pitches. Other times, he hilariously mimics a statement I have just dramatically relayed, with Jim Carrey-like acting chops, which immediately has me on the floor in fits of giggles.
Roscoe’s defense is that I “talk too fast.”
“Then tell me to slow down,” I say with exaggerated articulation.
“Whenever I ask you to slow down,” he refuted, “you basically get one decimal quieter and talk at exactly the same pace.”
As you can see, we obviously made a hopelessly dysfunctional couple. But the thing is, our dysfunction oddly works – excels – in our hus-friend-wi-friend dynamic. It excels so well, in fact, that we are each other’s go-to most of the time. We are Robin Hood and Little John. He is Little John in this metaphor.
I’m not saying that I/we are co-dependent, I’m just saying that I’m on the “oxygen tank” of Roscoe. And, luckily, Roscoe is happy to supply oxygen 24/7.
Also, I might add, when you talk to someone for 2.5 hours a day (most of which is over the phone), it become perfectly natural to slip into a British, Latin-based, or Indian accent with each other – that is, if you are weird like us. We do this often, and with terrible accuracy.
If you were to be a fly on the wall during one of Roscue and my phone conversations, this is the kind of thing you might hear. Imagine it being said in two badly-executed Indian accents:
“Why does it sound like you’re testing out nuclear bombs in your kitchen, geez!”
“I’m frying beans and rice for my Young bowl.”
“Did you just call it a ‘Young’ bowl? Like a Neil Young bowl? You know they’re called ‘Yum’ bowls right? Haha, it’s like when you called your glove compartment a glove ‘department.’”
“It’s a disability, Roscue, don’t mock the disability.”
“You really come from a special planet. A planet that is shaped like a banana.”
“I love you kitten-head.”
“How much do you love me?”
“To all the stars in the galaxy.”
“Only to the ones in this galaxy? I’m disappointed. I love you to all the stars in all of the galaxies. So I win.”
“Yeah, I guess you win then.”