I Almost Dated a Control Freak

I appear to be as passive as a dime-store sponge, so I tend to attract people who like to dominate and control me. But what these freaks don't seem to realize is that my socially inept exterior hides a will of steel, and the more they order me around or act disapprovingly, the faster I run back to the sanity of Murray Hill.

Just recently, I ran into one of these relationship Nazis in a bar and innocently made a date with him for that weekend. The guy (a big-time drinker, as I learned when I first met him last year) said he wanted to see me without my entourage, but it turned out he just wanted to toss me into HIS entourage. He had me join him at his friend's birthday party at an Upper West Side dive, where his patronizing tone had me looking for ways to blow out the candles and sneak out the side door.

My man was doing his already familiar routine of directing my every move. (It's so true: Everyone wants to be a director these days!) His favorite utterances are things like "Don't give me that nervous act," "Stop making that face," "Have fun!" and "Deal with it." I told him I do things my own way and I don't like to be given a script, certainly not at this point in my life where I've finally gotten some respect! He said he was sorry, but he works in education and that's how he talks to his kids. "I'm not one of your four-year-old students," I instructed him, bristling. Point taken.

Alas, though the guy may have stopped with the orders, he revved up the putdowns ("Generally, no one knows who you are"--this even though half of his party recognized me), not to mention self-aggrandizing statements about what a wonderfully direct person he is and how he's at the top of his field. "If I'm going to have to watch what I say, forget it," he told me, simply. "I don't filter out my thoughts, I just say them. Deal with it." Funny, I couldn't manage to filter out my OWN thoughts at this point, so I decided to take my stage direction very well: Exit the queen.

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