I met L when I was in a local production of ‘The Sound of Music‘ back in 2011. We hit it off well and stayed friends even after the short run ended. She’s really fun and funny, so we would get together as often as our schedules allowed. I’ve even gotten to know two of her three kids who are close to my age. Through L I have met a lot of other people I’ve become friendly with, including W who she introduced me to during SoM. W is a good guy, you just have to get used to his brashness and brazen humor.
Two or three years ago, one of L’s sisters, P came to live with L. She had spent most of her life as a bartender and was having severe back pain. She moved in with L so she could apply for disability. When she first moved here, I learned P had two small dogs. As I also have two small dogs, I thought it would be fun to allow our dogs to play together. Then I learned that she doesn’t believe in vaccinating her dogs, so that idea was quickly set aside. I’m sure that if she’d had children, they would be equally unvaccinated. I was willing to overlook this because allowing our dogs to play together wasn’t a condition of the friendship.
What has kinda ticked me off, though, is that every time I invite L to go somewhere or do something, she automatically brings P. She never asks if it’s okay. Even once when I asked her to have lunch because I needed to talk, P was there, so I skipped the talking. Both of these women are older than me, so P should be capable of making her own friends. I invited L to something a few weeks ago and for the first time she told me that P can’t come because she’s on a fixed income now with disability. I told L I understood, but inside I was rejoicing.
Over the years, things have happened to show me exactly what kind of person P is. She is paranoid. About a year or so ago, W hosted a birthday party for P and while we were sitting around as she opened her gifts, she pulled out a wallet another of her sisters gave her. It had some kind of RFID protection built in. She mentioned, too, hating that all credit cards now had chips to get your information from rather than the black strip. She’s convinced anyone can get information from those chips. She also LOVES our current male-figure-pretending-to-be-president, which leads me to…
Back in August, I had lunch with another mutual friend of ours, T. While we were eating, L was brought up in our conversation, as other friends usually are discussed when you get together with another. He told me then that he hadn’t seen L in months because he’d had a falling out with P. They were both over at his apartment visiting when P jumped up on her soapbox and was ranting about something political. T shot back his own opinion, which is a bit more liberal than hers, and they parted on bad terms.
If that wasn’t bad enough, in September I attended a concert given by the chorale that L sings with, to benefit the hurricane victims. After it was over, I saw W come sauntering up, but standing at a distance from where L was, because P was nearby. He started to explain, but not in great detail, that he’d had it out with P over something and that he had never hated someone so much in his life. W is a friendly sort. Really never meets a stranger. He will talk to you as though he’s known you for years even when you first meet him. He’s just that outgoing. In the six years I’ve known him, he’s never expressed hatred toward anyone, til now. He wouldn’t spill the beans right then, so I had to wait.
Which brings us to last night. W throws a yearly Halloween party where he opens his house to all of his friends; he merely asks that you bring food. One of his best friends C always helps organize things for him and of course I like her, so when it was time to leave, I sought her out specifically to say goodbye, in addition to W. She grabbed my hand and looked me dead in the eye and said, “Let’s talk.” While I like C, we’ve not grown very close. I like her, but we don’t have a very close friendship. In those few seconds I couldn’t imagine what we needed to talk about, but then she expanded. Whatever had gone down with W had involved her as well. Whenever they last got together, P went on a rage and called C a devil worshipper. I find that interesting, considering I’ve always gotten pagan vibes from P. If that’s true, why would she call C that? That would be something a Christian would accuse another of being. Regardless, C is nothing of the kind. As far as I’ve ever had reason to judge, C and her husband are of no religious persuasion.
I shared a little of what T had experienced with P and was told that she’s probably going after yet another of our friends next. I don’t know what her problem is, but I suspect it’s jealousy. W and L have been very close friends for a very long time. Years. He always introduces her as his best friend (in addition to C) and I would hate to see L loose that friendship or any of her friends for something her sister is doing.