There's this guy I have known for quite a while. We have some mutual friends, and all of our mutual friends adore him. I've never been all that jazzed about him. I don't bash him or anything (til now), but I've just never been that crazy about him. I couldn't really ever pinpoint what about him that makes me so uneasy. It was just one of those gut feelings backed up by the ever so slight comment or action that was imperceptible to everyone else. So I keep my thoughts to myself and think I'm the lone dissenter in his rather large, adoring fan club.
He's one of those smooth guys. He always has a line. His lines often make me want to roll my eyes, but -again- lone dissenter when I associate with the zillions of people in his fan club. My strategy with most people is to give back what they give me in general terms. If you're honest and forthright with me, I will try to be the same toward you - with the proviso that I have to trust you. If you tell me lines, I'll tell you lines.
My gut instinct told me very early on that he was a chauvinist and was kind of fragile and tended toward overcompensating. BUT...he played the part of being so progressive with his fan club. Honestly, if you're a chauvinistic ass, I'd prefer you just to be a chauvinistic ass. When you pretend not to be but really are, it's so disingenuous. The thing is, I didn't really have any hard evidence of his chauvinism and him making himself feel better by putting others down. There were a few small comments that put me on edge, but had almost anyone else made them, I wouldn't have zeroed in on them in the way I did with him.
My strategy with him has been to fly under the radar. If I don't threaten his ego, then my theory is that we can get by relatively easily. That means I play the part he wants me to play. I am non-threatening female who asks his advice on a lot of things, espouses overwhelming appreciation for his sage advice, and shows him the deference he so desires. It has worked successfully because, from his perspective, I am yet another adoring member of his fan club. What this also means, by extension, is that he doesn't really know me. But then again, he doesn't really need to know me, he just needs another member of his fan club.
And then he goes and pisses me off. Here's how it all went down.
He tells his fan club that he loves playing Words with Friends (WwF). I freaking love that game (it's an app). It's a nerdy Scrabble-type game. I found it about six months ago and play every day. He gives out his user name to a bunch of us.
Then I talk to him one-on-one and bring up WwF. Of course I am playing the role that comes naturally to me when dealing with him. I say with proper deference, "I love that game. I'm sure you're awesome at it because you're so smart. There's no way I could ever win against you, but it would be fun to play." (I can almost hear my husband retching as he reads this. It is retch-worthy, I know. If I said that to any of my real friends, they would find the sarcasm instantly.)
This guys says, and I'm not kidding, "Not to brag, but I'm undefeated."
I want to slap the guy. I really do. Pompous asses deserve it. But of course I will make that a figurative slap as I pound his ass in WwF. GAME ON! With the amazing ability to continue worshiping the god, I reiterated that I was sure he would win against me if we ever played.
So I started a game with him. I'm not sure if he knew it was me because I use my FB user name as my WwF user name. My actual name isn't part of it, but it gives away gender. We steadily start bouncing back moves. I'm not sure if he had a run of bad luck with his letters or if I had an especially good run, but I start off in the lead and then continue to add to my lead. I get about 150 points ahead of him.
... Pompous Ass RESIGNS from the game! I was completely taken aback by it. Then I thought that maybe he thought he was doomed (which he wasn't, there was enough time to make a comeback) and would start a rematch. Hours pass, days pass, and we're at the one week marker right now. Nothing. No rematch.
So, Pompous Ass, are you still undefeated if you resign from the game?
So, Pompous Ass, how does it feel to get beaten by a girl?
It's not like he's the first guy I've played who has done that. There have been two other guys I've played that have done the same thing. But I kind of EXPECTED it from them because they are blatant chauvinistic asses that couldn't stand a girl outdoing them, even on a stupid Scrabble game. Him? I guess I expected that he would have enough decency to play the whole thing out. I didn't expect him to ask for a rematch if I won after getting through a whole game, but I did expect for him to at least finish the stupid game.
There's two guys I steadily play WwF with. One is my husband, who would never ever resign from a game. I have to look at our statistics although I think I have about a 50% win rate against him. And one other guy who I routinely trounce, but he always keeps rematching me. We've probably played 10-15 games, and he's won once. I like that he has the ego strength to keep playing despite the fact that he rarely wins. That's a guy who's secure with himself and is playing for reasons other than he wants to win to stroke his own ego.
Back to Pompous Ass. I think this incident is so reflective of who he is as a person. It completely twirks me that he did that. Mr. Undefeated just can't take the ego blow of a girl winning. It's really pathetic, and it affirms my views on him. After this, it's going to be tough for me to be the same happy member of his fan club when I want to say something to him about it. But I'm not completely sure that he knew that it was me, and why stir up trouble when he might not know it was me.
Forever more his nickname will be Pompous Ass.