As I start typing this, my ex’s best friend sits at the counter of a café, six feet away from me. And I am doing everything I can not to run out of here screaming.
Because neither the Universe nor Fate have well-equipped social media teams with emergency alert systems in place just yet, today started like any Sunday. I woke up, lingered in bed to watch an episode of a show I missed that week, texted up some plans for later and decided to set out for a solo work brunch. I live in a neighborhood in Brooklyn dotted with coffee shops (also see: every gentrified or gentrifying ‘hood in the borough). With menus filled with locally-sourced ingredients and tables with locally-sourced singles, it’s no wonder that these are the places where I find the necessary fuel and inspiration to do my best work/day dreaming.
I walked the few blocks to a favorite spot, spied one last open table through the window and went in and up to the counter. I ordered a large iced Americano and baked eggs, eying what was left of the pastry/reward-for-being-so-darn-productive selection.
Sitting next to the pyramid of almond croissants sat a familiar face. My heart placed him before my head could — this was pre-iced Americano, mind you — and every part of my being told me to abort work breakfast and hightail it back home.
“Anything else?” the barista chirped, snapping me back to the present.
“Nooo, thaattt, willl beeee alllll,” I said in slow motion, forcing a perky smile, knowing I sealed my fate by placing an order that the menu warned would take ten minutes. Ten minutes!!
The guy at the counter fell into the 3rd worst case scenario category for a Sunday morning run-in: he wasn’t a sworn enemy (2nd worst case) or an ex (absolute 1st worst), he was an ex’s best friend (3rd).