Grumpy is freelance writer Lee Bemrose (email@example.com). He is very devoted to his partner and better half, The Dreaded One. Just saying.
The phone buzzes as a message comes in. I'm amused to see that it's a message from me. It's a very cute message. It says, “Why do you keep popping into my head? Don't you have some place to be? Love youuuu...” It's even accompanied by my Facebook profile pic, which makes the whole thing even more strange than it actually is.
Why has this message been sent to me from me? Because it's a message from my phone. You see, we've had wifi dongle problems and so have been using The Dreaded One's mobile as a wifi hotspot. Her phone is capable of such things; mine is not. And because I arrive home earlier than her and need the internet to send this very column, she suggested swapping phones. Sounded like a good idea, so that's what we did – after I had the briefest hesitation because what if she reads something she's not supposed to read? Stop being ridiculous, I reprimanded myself.
Thing is that now, as I re-read this message from me that's not from me, I realise it doesn't really sound very much it's from The Dreaded One either. It sounds cuter than her text message voice, kind of more cutesy-playful than she generally is. 'Keep popping into my head' suggests someone who hasn't seen me for a while. And, 'I love youuuu'? It sounds very much like a forwarded message from a third party. The very exact kind of message I had been so briefly worried about coming into my phone.
Think, Grumpy, think. So I think. Am I involved in a torrid love affair that has somehow slipped my mind for the time being? Me being me with my heightened ability to forget things, this isn't entirely out of the question. Then again, me being me as opposed to me being Russell Brand, a torrid love affair is not quite the kind of thing I usually find myself involved in.
Unless it's my old friend C. We were never involved in a torrid love affair, but we did become close enough to cause some friction between me and The Dreaded One. Things are cool now. C and The Dreaded One are great friends now. We all get along fine. We all tell each other that we love each other because we are life-is-short types who believe in telling our friends such things while we can. A few years ago maybe a message like this might have been a thing to fear, but not now.
Then again, what are the chances of my old friend C sending such a message on the one and only day The Dreaded One and I have ever swapped phones? What's that big word for little tiny things? Infinitesimal? The chance of this happening is infinitesimal. Laughable to even think such a thing. Ha. Hahaha. Hehe... oh, the lols!
Then a really stupid idea gets into my head: what if The Dreaded One is trying to test me in some way. What the hell is she up to? Is she trying to make me paranoid so that... so that... so that... nup, I keep getting nothing. I have no idea what kind of sneaky game she is playing.
I send a message back. A jokey, “So who did you forward that message from? (Smiley face with tongue poking out). Nah, thanks, I love you too.”
A few minutes later the message comes back, “It was from C.”
All is fine. I just need to remain calm because everything is fine. The column is written. The house has been cleaned. Pinot Gris is chilling. Dinner is bubbling away. Lovely rom-com DVD has been hired. The chances of there being trouble are infinitesimal.