Why I’m stepping away from e-mail for the weekend.

I received an e-mail last night from our vet clinic. Our sweet, wonderful vet succumbed to cancer.

As soon as I saw his name in the subject line, I knew. I put my hands over my face. All I could say was, “No, no, no.”

This man always had a smile on his face, but not in a weird way. He clearly loved his job, and I considered him my friend. He saved the Geriatric Poodle’s life. And he was honest with me when the Geriatric Poodle was getting toward the end of his road.

I am forever grateful for this man and his kindness. I never felt embarrassed crying in front of him. And with the Geriatric Poodle? Sometimes, there was a lot to cry about.

On the clinic Web site, they posted a notice of his passing … along with a photo of him wearing a red velvet crown. You know, like they give to the homecoming king? The look on my friend’s face is priceless, and the photo seems so perfect. It’s obvious the people who worked with him love him.

This morning, I discovered an e-mail in my inbox from Ex-Ex. He was writing to tell me that our vet had died. As if he was the only client they e-mailed. As if I live under a rock.

I found myself saying, “FUCK YOU!” out loud.

Rationally? I know that this is yet another attempt from Ex-Ex to interact with me and get some sort of validation that he’s not a total schmuck.

But irrationally?

I want to write him back and tell him that he’s sullying the legacy of a man of great kindness and integrity by using his death for those purposes. I want to tell him that our vet was a man of honor and my friend – two things that he certainly didn’t have in common with Ex-Ex. And Ex-Ex? You and I both know you didn’t do squat as far as vet care when we lived together – that all fell on my shoulders. And our sweet vet? I never had an escape plan from him, like the escape plan I had toward the end of our relationship when I figured I could lock myself in the bathroom and jump down the laundry shoot to get away from you if necessary. So fuck off.

So, yeah. I don’t think I’ll be responding.

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