dead roses

Yesterday morning, driving back from the gym, I was flipping through the radio dial when I happened upon a surreal piece of real-life radio theater.

A woman named Tanya had phoned in to a DJ named Chio, who runs a feature called War of the Roses.  Tanya was worried that her boyfriend James was, perhaps, maybe, straying.  She described him as “super good looking, model-quality” and gave numerous examples of other young women flirting with him, bumping his grocery cart with theirs, sitting in Tanya’s seat at the Flyers game when she left to get snacks in order to cozy up to James, and approaching him brazenly in, apparently, every possible situation.

James had never given Tanya any indication that he was acting on all this temptation.  She just feared that he would fall into the Tiger Woods sandtrap.  Opportunity + hormones = cheating.  “You know, boys will be boys.” 

Chio asked “Are you sure you want to do this?  He’s never given you reason for suspicion.”  Tanya said “Yes, do it.”  By now, I was a like a fish – squirming with discomfort but completely hooked.  What, exactly, had Tanya just authorized Chio to do?   Morbid fascination and curiosity kept my attention pinned to the radio.

Beeping noises.  Chio’s sexy-voiced sidekick called James and pretended that he won the chance to send a dozen red roses to someone – anyone at all.  After he got through making sure that there was no catch and he would not be billed, he was excited to do this.  “Who do you want to send the roses to?” the sexy voice purred.  “To Tanya, with love, James.” 

He passed the test!   I almost clapped with relief, and was hoping to hear the buzz of a dial tone as everyone hung up and moved on.

But no.  At this point, Chio burst in on the call.  “James Dawg, this is Chio!  Tanya was worried you might be steppin out on her, my man.”  James, befuddled and confused, listened as  Chio explained he was a DJ, and the roses were a ruse, then put Tanya on the line. 

James:  “Tanya, is that you?  You called a RADIO STATION?”  Tanya was instantly contrite.  “I know, I’m sorry, I…I…I”m ashamed…but I was worried…”  Everything else was beeped out as James unleashed a torrent of expletives for the next seven seconds.

It was awful.  Poor, stupid Tanya. 

In a Shakespearean twist of the sort seldom found in morning radio, she learned that she was indeed first in her boyfriend’s heart, but because this discovery involved entrapment, public humiliation, and a shock jock,  she had destroyed the relationship. 

And now the whole world knows that she is not only insecure, but also has terrible problem-solving skills.  

I’m sure Tanya is hoping she and James can patch things up, have great make-up sex, get married, raise kids, and laugh about this whole silly experience with their grandchildren some day.

But I’m just as sure that’s not going to happen.   Somewhere, the Bard of Avon must be chortling.

Did you ever bungle a perfectly good thing?  Or have a shock jock intervene in a sensitive area of your life?  Come on, you can tell us.
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