I had this boyfriend once, he was an exchange student. I could tell because of his passport. He didnít speak very much English either. You remind me of him, are you an exchange student? Shit, I didnít mean to say that. Sorry. Thanks for understanding.

Anyways, he was the real outdoors type, very nature-boy. I remember he had this really big thing for trees-- foliage of any type. He wouldnít even make out with me unless there was at least a Chia Pet involved. Even now, just the sight of a California Redwood makes me feel inadequate.

We dated for a few months, and then it was summer break, and he was going to go plant trees in the Okanagan. He was going to spend four months out there in the bush, all alone, with those... trees.

You ever heard about that sasquatch? Heís like some big stinky hairy dude with a really bad attitude. You donít know what could happen to you, out there in the woods all alone.

Anyways, I told him it wasnít safe. Heíd have to choose: me or the trees.

Anyways, he didnít come back to school the next year, I guess maybe his visa expired. And I never saw him again after that.

***

I had this boyfriend once, we met at the airport. He said he was actually a chef, but I didnít believe him, because he looked more like a pilot. It didnít matter, I slept with him anyways.

Turns out, he really was a chef, he even had his own show on the local cable station. I would watch him with my morning coffee, as he stir-fried this and chop-sueyed that. Boy, he really knew his way around a Ginsu. Kinda gave me a woody, kinda.

Anyways, so one day I was reading my Tarot cards. His card said he was gonna be suddenly famous, all international and shit. And then, I picked up my card, and you know what it said? Death. Itís like our cards were intertwined, because we were soul-mates, and his fame equaled my death.

Thatís when he got this email from his agent. It was marked urgent, and you know what that means. Says this teriyaki company wants him to be their new representative, like the Colonel Sanders of sushi or something. But only if he signed a four year contract.

I freaked out, right? I told him, if he went ahead, Iíd never, ever have anything to do with him, ever again. It was just too risky.

So, of course, he did it anyway.

Anyways, I never saw him again after that, except sometimes on cable. Sushi gives me a rash.

***

I had this boyfriend once, he was this famous celebrity hair dresser. I met him at this big fashion show at Holt Renfrew, I think it was like, Issey Miyake or somebody, very conceptual with these bonsai hairweaves and junk like that.

He opened his own salon with his best friend, they called it Ricki Chez Ricki of West Vancouver, because both of them were named Ricki, except his name was spelled with a T.

I hung out at his salon all the time, I didnít have much to do in those days, not like now. Iíd wait until he was between clients to get him to shave my head. He was really good, and you know how picky I am about my head. My scalp is really really sensitive, ever since the Smiths broke up.

So, there was this one time I was sitting in his salon, when suddenly, like all his cell phones started ringing at once. So it was like, Rei Kawakubo, calling from Hong Kong, they urgently needed a new stylist. So, Ricki packed his little overnight bag. I was all set to go with him, but then I read about this terrible thing that happened somewhere, in some like, Asian country.

You know how their hair is so tough, they gotta use these super harsh chemicals that are so strong you never know what might happen. Anyways, there was this hairdresser, and he accidentally, spilled this thing of kimchi he was having for lunch into this super-toxic enormous vat of perm solution he was preparing. All they found after that was this little pile of ashes, and this single pickled radish.

Anyways, so I told my boyfriend I wouldnít go with him, it was just too risky; if he really loved me he wouldnít take these chances. But I guess he cared more about fashion; and he went without me and I never saw him again.

***

I had this boyfriend once, he was an airline pilot. I didnít believe him at first, I mean, some guys will say anything. But then he showed me his hat, and it was true!

Anyways, he was always overseas and shit, very Pacific Rim. I think it was mostly Asia: Tokyo, Shanghai, Bangkok, Bali... is that Asia? I think it is, isnít it?

Anyways, I was always so paranoid whenever he was gone. Like, what was he doing all weekend? Who was he with? Is he pounding back the sushi with some sassy little geisha boy? Meanwhile, Iím laying on my empty futon, in the dark, listening to Morrissey, sharing sweet nothings with my vibrator. It was tearing us apart.

It was tearing us apart, so he finally agreed to take me with him. But then, the airline offered him danger pay if he would change his route to the Caribbean. Hello... Bermuda? Triangle? I was totally freaked out. I said to him, you know, if I wanted a high-risk boyfriend, Iíd be barebacking Courtney Love.

Anyways, I never saw him again after that.

***

I had this boyfriend once, I think he was a high school dropout. I saw him at this rave. I donít know, there was just something about him. He had this intense serenity thing going. I was totally into his aura. He made me feel whole.

Anyways, we went to Dunkin Donuts to watch the sunrise. I needed a cigarette, but he didnít have any money, and my card got eaten by the machine, again. So we spent the morning washing windshields. It was very transcendent.

So we started hanging out and shit. Anyways, one day he got this call from his Mom back home. She lost her food stamps, her building collapsed, her liver ruptured, and her cat died. She couldnít take it anymore, so he decided to go home and help take care of her, right then and there.

I asked him: ďWell, you know, what about me? I love you too.Ē And he said: ďI love you, but my mother comes first. I gotta go.Ē I never saw him again after that.

***

Donít do it dude.

This oneís a keeper.

***

I had a boyfriend once, he was a drifter. I could tell because of his toque. I once told him he reminded me of an ex-boyfriend. I donít know why, I guess I was nervous or maybe I was trying to impress him or something. But in a dumb ass kind of way.

He didnít seem to mind much. He was always very thoughtful and understanding. Anyways, he was a really good listener, he never judged me or nothing. He made me smile a lot. We hung out together for a while, but then I guess it was time for him to move on. I guess thatís what drifters do, you know, they move on and junk.

Anyways, I asked him not to go. He listened, but he didnít change his mind. So I then I told him he was going to be abducted by space aliens out there on the road, in the middle of nowhere. It happens all the time.

My cousin was abducted once. He was missing, for like, two weeks. They finally found him in a corn field, naked, in a coma, missing one of his nipples.

Anyways, he still wouldnít change his mind. So, I even resorted to hiding his toque. But that didnít work either, he found it right where I put it, in the closet, underneath the Morrissey sweatshirt. I love that sweatshirt.

The day he left, I was waiting with him on the side of the road, just until, you know, a car stopped and picked him up. And, while I was standing there, waiting, I started to think about all those other guys, the ones I said, you know, disappeared. And how they didnít really disappear, because I mean I couldíve gone with them, but I didnít. And then I realized how tired I was, how very very tired I was of always being the one who stayed behind. And I thought how cool it would be, if just this one time, I had the balls to go with him. That would be so cool.