Disappearing Act

Story Submitted by Josh:

Beth and I were out to dinner on our first date.  Everything was going well enough, and we were talking about our travels.  She had visited Scotland a few months prior, and I had been to Germany.  We swapped phones to look at each other's photo albums, as we discovered that both of us had always wanted to visit where the other one had been.

I should have seen this as a bad sign, in retrospect, but at the time, I didn't think anything of it: I was full of questions about the photos on her camera, and I asked her plenty of questions about where a certain picture was taken, or what the significance of a particular place was.  In contrast, she didn't ask me a single question, opting instead to silently leaf through my digital album.

After a little over 10 minutes, we traded phones back, had a good rest of dinner, and we parted warmly.  "I'd like to see you again," I told her after I had walked her back to her car.

"I'd like that, too," she said.

The next day, I discovered that nearly every woman's number that I had saved in my phone had somehow been deleted.  Well, every woman's number except for Beth's.  Strangely, that one remained.  Putting two and two together, I called her.

"Hi!" she answered her phone, chipper and exuberant.

"Hey.  I couldn't help but notice that a lot of numbers disappeared from my phone after you leafed through it last night."

She replied, "Yeah.  I might have erased some."

"You erased all of the women."

"That's possible."

"Yes.  Why?"

She said, "Uh… you're dating me."

"Right, and?"

Silence from her end of the phone.  I waited her out and she finally said, "Do I really have to explain why?  You're not that dense, are you?"

I said, "It strikes me as a strange and kind of psychotic thing to do, but maybe that's just me being dense."

"Well, you're dating me."

"Yes.  We've been over that.  What we haven't been over is why you thought it was a good idea to erase all of my female friends' numbers, numbers I was easily able to restore from a backup this morning."

More silence, then she asked, "Are you going to be with them or with me?"

I said, "I think I'll stick with the ones who don't invade my privacy and act like children."

"Oh, and I'm acting like children?"

"Very little ones, yes."

A bit more silence, then, "Okay, explain to me again what you say I did wrong.  I don't think you made that very clear."

Then it was my turn to pitch in some silence.  Finally, I responded, "I think we should just stay friends.  I have to go now," and I hung up on her.

She called me off the hook for a long while afterward, but somehow or other, I always misplaced her number whenever I planned to call her back.  Pity.


  1. A good number of my friends are male, and it bothers me when women come into the picture and suddenly demand that my friends stop talking to me. It is a huge sign of immaturity and insecurity. Good call, OP. This one reeks of Fatal Attraction status.

  2. ^ Yeah. Invite her home and she'll be rifling through your drawers, and piling photos and anything remotely female into a pile and setting fire to it.

  3. My wife has male friends, and though there might be one or two that I detest, I trust her, and I would never try to impose who she could or could not spend time with.

    As long as I know in advance that she's going to be hanging out or going to lunch with somebody, I have no problem with it. Even a text message ahead of time is good enough.

  4. Some of those numbers could have been relatives or your supervisor at work or business opportunities. They could have been attached friends or anybody like that. Regardless, she was ridiculous. I'm amazed that she was thinking that she didn't do anything wrong.


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