Why Bell Peppers Make Me Think of My Husband's Ex
One of my three jobs in college was working for Food Services which had three departments, I worked in the bakery and was one of the “Fabulous Baker Girls” we had a blast. The hours were early but we would literally roll out of bed and go straight to work. I would smell like sweet sugar everyday after work. I would also give free donuts and treats to those special people I liked. Through the years of working there new people would come and go. We had a manager who oversaw the whole bakery and then there were our bosses who were under the manager. For the most part every worker and boss was pretty cool and down to earth. There was one boss who was pretty cool she was named after a flower or possibly a part of the eye and we all had a really good time joking around in the bakery.
I thought we were really good friends until I told her one time that I thought the new kid in another area was really good looking. Shortly after that admission things started to change. She stopped being playful and having fun and started to get really serious about everything. That was cool I mean after all it was work. But then she started doing even weirder stuff like telling the new cute guy that I was lusting after him. I, of course, did not mind because I knew how I really felt. I just thought he was cute nothing more than that. But she took it to a different level. This interaction caused a huge riff between the two of us and then she started to exert her power by switching me out of the bakery and into the pantry, making sure that I got the crappiest of jobs. One job was making salsa. Normally it would not be a big deal but remember I was doing this for the whole campus and making salsa meant that we weren’t mixing ingredients in a bowl but in a huge ass garbage can and mixing them with a damn oar. I kid you not. So chopping up onions and jalapenos meant that my eyes were burning, my nose was running and my throat was closing from all of the juices even if I wore a mask. I would not smell pretty like I did when I worked with donuts no I smelled like onions and jalapenos. I knew what she was doing and did not let her know that it was affecting me negatively I just kept working as if it were no big deal. I let her teach me how to cut and de-seed bell peppers and other crafty things with foods. But things were changing more and more. She would do little things here and there to try and get back at me. The biggest and meanest thing that she did though was when I was trying to get a promotion to run my own campus store. I found out that one of the reasons I did not get the promotion was because my immediate boss did not believe that I could handle the job. I was more than pissed; she was now messing with my money.
It was shortly after being turned down that our job started talking about a “Booze Cruise” that was being planned; my roommates and bakery buddies were excited. What could be better than a boat ride and free alcohol? We were eager to go and that became my main focus as I struggled through a job that I was not fond of. However my job would get really exciting when the guy that I thought was cute and the reason that my boss and I got in a tiff in the first place would be working side by side with me. I was a little nervous about it because I did not know the extent of what my boss had told him but I would soon find out.
The cute guy and I started working together and I immediately wanted to clear the air. So we talked while we worked. I was amazed at what I found out. Seems that my boss was interested in him but he was not interested in her and so she tried to play it off by throwing me under the bus and telling him how I felt. The shock came when she found out that he thought it was cool because he felt the same about me and that did not sit well with her at all. She was not happy that we were working together even though she had a boyfriend at the time. It was all too bizarre for me but I let her play her games and watched as things began to unfold for her.
First thing that happened occurred on the booze cruise. Everyone was there we were having a blast and I was staying as far away from my boss as I could on a boat. When she was at the front of the boat I was at the back. While my roommate and I were at the back of the boat we were drinking and talking and my boss’ boyfriend who was a boss for another location came up between the two of us and put his arms around us. He was completely smashed at this time and actually said to us, “I have never been with two roommates.” My roommate was quick to the draw and responded, “And you never will be.” Problem was that he would not leave us alone. We wanted to throw him over the railing but that would have been wrong. Everyone at the back of the boat could hear him and word started spreading fast. Soon my boss was at the back of the boat dragging her boyfriend away from us.
The second thing that happened was a few weeks later when I was out on a “date” with the cute guy from work it was really an innocent outing but we bumped into my boss and since it was outside of work she thought the worst. We were both ok with her thinking whatever she wanted to think from that encounter. There were a couple other things that happened throughout the rest of my career there that would just make her mad. Too many to really count but I continued on until it was time for me to graduate and leave. But that would not be the end of our interactions.
The final blow would be several years later when I was on my honeymoon. By this time I had found out through a string of conversations that my husband had actually dated this “woman” (I’m trying to be nice here) right before he and I started dating I was shocked to say the least. In fact she wanted to get back together with him but by then he had met me and we all know that after he met me that was it!! He told her at the time that he met someone else and they went their separate ways. On our honeymoon as we were walking out of our hotel who should we both run into but my boss/his ex and it was such a wonderful exchange. First she saw him and came running up with a huge hug all excited. Of course she didn’t see me until she was locked in the hug and I came up behind him. Her whole demeanor changed at that point and I loved watching everything unfold as she unwillingly acknowledged me. Don’t worry; I was a good girl although I got several digs in when I could. The look on her face was priceless when she asked, “What are you two doing here?” I made sure that I was loud and clear when I replied, “We are on our honeymoon.” The fact that she was speechless was good enough for me. Then I said, “It was nice to run into you (total lie).” And thanked her for teaching me how to cut and de-seed bell peppers and my husband and I went on our merry way. Later that night when we got back to the hotel room there were over 10 messages for my husband from his ex. Those messages would go unanswered. Although it has been years since either one of us has seen her every time I cut into a bell pepper I think of her.
Iris - Goo Goo Dolls
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