Luv Ya!

When I was somewhere around the ripe age of 22, I had been “dating” a guy for about two solid weeks, which translates into about 5 dates. I was dorkily crazy about him, I thought he was cooler than the De La Soul cassette tape I played 47 times a day. I was in art school, and he was about 8 years older, had a real job, a suit, a car without 587 bumper stickers all over it, and fabulous hair. He took me on real dates, like to nice restaurants and opened doors and paid the check without asking me to “kick down towards the tab.” I would order vodka sea breezes until my pants fell off. This was the real deal.

He was driving me back to my place after an evening of playing pony in the stable at his place, and when he leaned over to kiss me goodnight, I said the three biggest little words possible…”I love you.”

And he said, “Thanks.”

My heart dropped into my lower intestine and I thought I might barf and cry at the same time, so with the slightest bit of hesitation, just enough to be awkward, I said, “No! I mean luv’ ya” and punched his shoulder to demonstrate the lightness and said, “like, luv’ ya!” Then I grinned, trying not to vomit my shattered ego as I said goodnight, and got out of the car to go cry in the fetal position for 8 hours.

The damage was done of course. My calls were avoided, and I never heard from him again. This was my first lesson in The Power of The I Love You. I might as well have said “I am going to cut your balls off with a rusty saw!” or “I have genital warts and vaginosis!” Who knew the words I Love You could elicit the same response, certainly not me.

On that particular occasion, I stood staring at my guts all over the floor, exposed and frozen heart shattered into a million pieces, covered in tears as the universe took a hot, arching stream of piss all over my self esteem. But it’s a lesson we all have to learn at one point or another, and it fucking sucks, no bones about it. I will always remember every single detail of that moment, it is burned into my memory bank. When I look back at that young girl, I experience second-hand embarrassment for both her innocence and naivety. But I knew who I was and how I felt, and regardless, I was brave enough to say how I felt, and I have done it again and again.


It was a few years later that I ran into him in a bar one night. On my way out, I walked right up to him, looked him in the eye, punched his shoulder and said, “luv’ ya” as I walked out, laughing my ass off.

27 replies

  1. Haha! That must have been sweet, getting to run into the coward again. Oh, and “I’m going to cut your balls off with a rusty saw” would be great on a card. Or on Valentines Candy.

    (I have a post with Valentines candies that say U LEFT SEAT UP and other romantic sayings. Plus, Rutabaga and I are having a contest to see who can come up with the most VD themed candy sayings in the comments. This is an awesome holiday.)

  2. Tracy,
    “Thanks”?! I’m pretty sure i would have punched him in the face. I guess that is why I never told it first. I’m lacking mental clarity when my feelings are involved.

  3. Shit, I’ve said those three little words at the wrong time and to the wrong person, too… and reaped the unbenefits…

    Love your come-back at him! 🙂

  4. I had to listen to that song. What a creep and a coward he was/is! You showed him, Tracy. In a way, I think you saved yourself grief in the long run. You didn’t need to waste any more time on that guy. Happy V-Day!

  5. Oh man, my worst cringe-y moment like that was at age 23 with a guy that was quite a bit older AND from NYC (so automatically way cooler than lil’ ol’ Minneapolis me). I feel like puking every time I think about it. I LOVE that you got to deal it back and did it cool as fuck! You are a role model for my mortified inner 20-something! = )

  6. One of my best friends told her then-boyfriend “I love you” when he was driving away after a visit once. He didn’t hear her and said, “what?” and she freaked out and thought he was upset so she said, “Elephant…shoes?” and he just shook his head in a confused manner and drove away.

    Strangely enough, they are still together. And I think they actually might tell each other they love each other now. Maybe. Or they just talk about pachyderm footwear, I don’t know their lives.

  7. How cool that you got to see that guy again – I love how you handled it. I have been there and put those words out there first – they change everything and sometimes not for the better.

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