Firstly, let me apologize in advance, to all of you, for what I've done.
Everyone makes mistakes, though, right? I mean, the last guy who was perfect ('tis said) had his moment of doubt and pain too. And hell, he cavorted with a hooker - had her get freaky with him and a jar of myrrh, whatever the fuck THAT is.
So: nobody's perfect, and there are those who are sure that I would lose, in a landslide, the Perfection Detection Election. And I made a mistake. And I'm sorry. I'm so so sorry.
Here's what happened. Well, actually, a bit of background first, if you'll indulge the storyteller in me:
You might not know this, and I hope I'm not telling tales out of school, but as regards Josie, it's safe to say that I Knew Her When. She didn't have a blog. She didn't write anything. I had to cajole her to even try to put pen to paper, and when she did the only emotional impact her writing had was to drive the point home that she was a shitty writer. This by the way is nothing I wouldn't tell her to her face; no secrets between we two.
But - and this was the important bit - she was always Very Josie. She always had a certain nauseating self-confidence in her skills, even when her skills were sub-par. And while I will grant that she's a decent poker player now, used to was, she had to rely on the overabundance of luck for which she is famous in certain circles.
And when she would win a hand - especially one that she did not deserve to win - she uttered a phrase of self-congratulation that hit my ears like an icepick.
She would snap her fingers (both hands) and in a lilting singsong voice, say "Snaps for Josie!" and haul in her chips.
Friends, you have absolutely NO IDEA how annoying that was. One night, I swear I'll never forget it, she sucked out on me magnificently by drawing out to one card. I think it was a six. She gave her "Snaps for Josie" bit and then cackled like a witch at my misfortune, or her fortune. I went ballistic, swearing at her and yelling that when she sucks out like a goddamn fucking fish she might want to take that Snaps for Josie business and jam it so far up her ass that when she farts it sounds like "Snaps for Josie" if the wind is right.
We did not talk for almost two weeks. And we're about as close to best friends as adults can get.
I hated "Snaps for Josie;" I really did.
Well, time passed, with many cares and many changes. Josie started blogging, found her voice almost immediately, learned to use paragraphs reasonably well, and became a good writer right before my eyes. She also became a good poker player, using the Sicilian gifts that she possesses to read people in a live setting frightfully well. She became just a little bit more deserving of the ridiculously high opinion she has of herself.
And best of all, she forgot about Snapping for Josie. So did we all.
Until last night.
We were playing poker, and Jo won a hand, whose details alas have been lost to the four winds. She expressed delight at dragging this particular pot, and before I knew it, I heard myself utter the words that she herself had forgotten.
Let the record bear the truth for all eternity: 'Twas I, of all people. I, who suffered the greatest under the oppressive yoke of that vile expression, who resurrected its skeletal remains from long death and brought it, hale and well, back to vigorous life.
Yes: out of the clear blue sky, I uttered the words "Snaps for Josie!" in the same obnoxious singsongy voice that she used a thousand times, but not for years almost beyond count.
Her face lit up like the Griswold's house at Christmastime and I knew right then that I would be spending the rest of this decade enduring the almost unendurable "Snaps for Josie" bullshit that she had run on me for years.
She took a pad of paper on which she was doodling, drew a giant Lucy and Desi heart (kids, look it up), and inside it wrote that nightmare phrase as if to re-engrave it, indelibly this time, into her conscious mind.
So now, if any of you have the singular misfortune of playing poker with Very Josie, on-line or in person, and she drags a pot she has no business dragging - and she will - steel your nerves in advance because you are going to hear that phrase. You will hear "Snaps for Josie."
And I just want to say, I'm sorry. I'm so so sorry.