Everybody has at least one quirk. Mine is wearing Cookie Monster underwear to job interviews. My grandmother’s was stealing Sweet ‘n’ Low from the local diner. Last week, I discovered my boyfriend’s is keeping a freezer full of human fingers.
We’d been dating for a couple of months, but I already knew that Ewan was “the one.” He was sweet and funny and ruggedly handsome. And his Scottish accent made it almost impossible for me not to rip off his clothes every time he opened his mouth. Like Mary Poppins, he was practically perfect in every way, and I was positive there was no other man for me.
When he invited me to his apartment last week for a romantic dinner, I was beyond excited. Up to that point, I’d never been to his place. For some reason, I always imagined a medieval suit of armor displayed prominently in his living room, but alas, all I found was a half dead ficus plant.
Despite that minor disappointment however, the evening was amazing. Ewan made some kind of gourmet stew that was better than anything I’d ever tasted. We ate, we drank, we made love. Lying in bed with his arms wrapped around me, I wished I could just freeze time and stay like that forever.
But in the middle of the night, I got a craving for ice cream. So I eased myself out of his embrace, careful not to wake him, and tiptoed to the kitchen.
Upon opening the freezer, all I saw was a pile of frosted over Ziploc bags. And I didn’t think anything of them besides pushing them away, so I might reach the ice cream that I prayed was in the back. Evidently one of the bags was only halfway sealed though, and all the jostling caused the contents to spill to the floor.
I bent down to pick it up, and this is when my brain and my eyeballs began to argue.
“Sir, there are fingers on the floor. I repeat, fingers on the floor.”
“Is that supposed to be a joke, soldier?”
“No, sir. I promise you I’m not joking.”
“Then you’re misreading the situation. Tell me exactly what you see.”
“Like I said before, sir. Fingers.”
“How much have you had to drink tonight, soldier?”
“Nothing, sir. I don’t imbibe.”
“I don’t believe you. Go sleep it off. Come see me in the morning.”
“But, sir, you have to believe me!”
“I don’t have to do anything, soldier. And you best remember who you’re talking to before you take that tone with me.”
It was only when a frustrated tear rolled down my cheek that my brain reconsidered what my eyes were reporting. They had an impeccable track record for providing accurate information, so…
At that, I bolted back to the bedroom and shook Ewan awake.
He didn’t appear worried that I found his stash. He was actually pretty calm about it, said he would not have invited me over if he meant to keep it a secret.
We sat on the couch with a bottle of wine as he explained that he’s been collecting and eating fingers for years, that it started with a mountain hike gone wrong.
I nearly threw up several times throughout the conversation, especially when I realized what was in his special stew… and then again when he revealed that he sneaks into morgues at night and chops off his dinner with a box cutter.
When he was finished, Ewan held my hands and looked into my eyes. He told me he knew it was a lot to digest, but that he loved me and hoped I could accept this part of him.
And maybe it was his accent working its magic (even after all that, I still wanted to rip off his clothes), but it didn’t take me long to decide that the finger thing didn’t matter to me.
After all, everybody has at least one quirk.