Stalking My Ex-Boyfriend’s Girlfriend on Facebook by Amanda Miska

Most Memorable: February 2015

Silhouette of businesswoman standing at deskHer Name: Jessica. It means rich and God beholds in Hebrew. It seems to be prophetic, even if it happened to be one of the most popular names the year she was born (1981).

 

Location: They both live in San Francisco. I imagine the top apartment of a row house, his bikes hanging on a wall, her shoes strewn inside the doorway, a mattress in the middle of the floor, careless white sheets, and lots of potted plants. The smell of incense like he’d always burn, heavy on the patchouli.

 

Profile Photo: She is beautiful—like, princess-of-some-obscure-country beautiful or my-dad-is-a-B-list-celebrity-and-my-mom’s-a-performance-artist beautiful. She doesn’t wear makeup or else she’s the kind of person who can do her makeup to look like she doesn’t wear any. There is something exotic about her. Maybe it’s the way she’s looped a scarf around her head, or the way she’s laughing at something outside of the frame. I wonder if it’s him. I remember once, after stopping at a 7-11 for snacks, we were driving back to his place. He asked me, from the passenger seat, if he had anything on his face. I turned my head slightly to see his chin, mouth, and nose completely covered in toxic-orange Cheetos dust. He would do things like this all the time: surprise me with his strangeness.

A closer inspection reveals that there are no photos of the two of them together, and I wonder if that means something or if it’s just some kind of security setting that’s caused the omission.

 

Her job: She works in international relations. She travels often—she has one of those world map images where you pin the places you’ve been, covered in colored dots like mutant freckles. He’d had a paper map on the wall in his bedroom, with a jagged line drawn in blue pen from Alexandria, Virginia to Seattle, the place he wanted to go back to once he saved up enough money. He used to be a bike messenger there in his twenties, had shown me a picture of himself after a serious accident where he had almost died. His face, bloodied and swollen, was almost unrecognizable. I remember the sensation of wanting to cry when I looked at it, a tickle in my nose.

 

Interests: She runs marathons. There is a picture of her in tiny shorts crossing a finish line. Sinewy arms and legs glisten with a sheen of sweat that makes her glow like some otherworldly creature. I bet she has green smoothies for breakfast and a purse full of dry roasted almonds. I bet she poops at least four times a day thanks to her diet of raw foods.

I wonder if he’s quit smoking. I remember how we smoked cigarettes out his window in the middle of March in our underwear because his landlord had a no-smoking rule, but we didn’t feel like getting dressed to go out on the porch. There was a coating of snow on the ground, moonlight illuminating our pairs of footprints on the sidewalk where we’d stumbled in.

She probably also does yoga before bed, on their bed, the bed they share together, and he probably stares at her ass while she’s in downward-facing dog and then they do it doggy-style, which was his favorite position—I had imagined so he could imagine someone else, someone he’d lost or hadn’t found yet. Someone not-me.

 

Her Last Facebook Update: Over two years ago—she changed her cover photo to an image of a colorful market in some foreign country I don’t recognize because I’ve never been anywhere but here. She’s the kind of person who doesn’t use Facebook because she’s too busy with real life. With him. Riding bikes and boarding planes and smoking pot and having sex and drinking beer and taking walks and buying groceries.

I imagine their first date: They probably went to see some obscure band play a house show. She probably wore jeans she had since high school and a plain tank. Tiny stud earrings. Flat shoes. A little mascara. Essential oil dabbed behind her ears instead of perfume. She probably let him kiss her on the cheek at her door at the end of the night. She probably didn’t even fall asleep with her phone under her pillow, so he probably called her. Her lack of desperation was just what he’d been looking for.

 

amanda_miska Amanda Miska lives and writes in Northern Virginia (and spends way too much time on social media, procrastinating from writing). Her work has been featured in Whiskey Paper, Buffalo Almanack, CHEAP POP, jmww, The Collapsar, Storychord, Five Quarterly, Cartridge Lit, Cactus Heart, Pea River Journal, and elsewhere. She is the fiction curator at Luna Luna Magazine. You can find her on Twitter: @akmiska or at her blog tumblingtowards.tumblr.com.

 

 

 

  13 comments for “Stalking My Ex-Boyfriend’s Girlfriend on Facebook by Amanda Miska

  1. I love your writing Amanda!! I pictured this FB stalking ex story as the perfect “spoken word” performance with the right background beat playing in the background as I read it … ??
    I have had a beat I produced titled “Behind a Bull” waiting for the perfect spoken wordz to go with it. Im thinkin something like your story wld fit beautifully.
    ~MizzTaurusBeatz

    http://www.soundcloud.com/mizztaurusbeatz

  2. This was great, I think so many people can relate to this…..the pain of letting go of someone and the double pain of imagining the new person that they are with (or not even imagining, but actually seeing it…..) Wonderful writing 🙂

  3. If you are willing to admit this, I wonder what other secrets you have to tell? I can’t wait to read them!!!

  4. This is so raw and honest. Love how you’ve structured the piece to tell the story. I was immediately captivated and held by your tale till the end. All-too-familiar material written with a wonderfully unique touch. My “stalking days” were pre-Internet, but all the same feelings came up for me. Loved this, Amanda. Bravo!

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