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02 April, 2009

Swiss Army Disengagement

That's really the right name for it. Because, getting out of that relationship served so many purposes, that it was like the Swiss Army knife of life decisions. I got my life back. I got my friends back; particularly my best friend. I got my living arrangements back to something that I wanted, namely being in Seattle. I got my freedom back, to do things that I wanted to do. So it seems fitting to refer to it that way.

But that's not the reason for the title of this blog.

When I broke off my engagement with the Russian that we'll call Katya, just for the sake of pseudo-anonymity, I was left with a couple of things: a $4100 diamond and platinum engagement ring, and a $900 diamond and platinum wedding band. I'm embarrassed to tell you these things, because I know that I should never have purchased them. It was impulsive, and rebound-y, and I was trying to do something I wasn't ready to do, with someone with whom I was not ready to do it. I don't even believe in diamonds! I never have, and I never will. Rubies or sapphires? Maybe a different story. But diamonds are just so trite and full of dark history and things that I don't wish to support. I suppose that all gemstones have unpleasant back story, but diamonds must be the worst. Or else that movie with Leonardo DiCaprio and Jennifer Connelly (meow!) would be called "Blood Emerald" or "Blood Topaz".

So, I had all this crap when we broke up. And it was worth a lot, but hard to get rid of. I should say that it was a show of a fair bit of integrity that Katya returned everything to me without my asking for it. She was kind of nuts, and definitely a very difficult person to live with, but she had integrity in some important ways. That was one of the things that I appreciated. Though, I do realize, in hindsight, that part of the reason I thought she had so much integrity is because she was constantly telling me how much integrity she had. So perhaps, a more careful objective look would reveal a different character.

Back to the crap.

The engagement ring, I managed to (mostly) get rid of via the same place I bought it online. They allowed me to consign the stone, and get close to the value of it, minus a commission. I think I got $2700 for a stone that I paid $3600. All things considered, not tragic. It is scary to think that some woman is wearing the stone of another woman's failed relationship on her hand. Is there some sort of curse or karma that goes along with that? Possibly.

The ring in which it was set, however, could not be sold. And who is going to buy a setting minus the stone? Nobody, that's who. So that will rot forever, and I could not possibly even tell you where it is. I should probably just donate it or something, if I find it.

The wedding band - the one that would have been Katya's if we were living on Neptune where all backwards things are possible - that, I was able to trade in at the jewelry store where it was purchased. For some bizarre reason, they allowed me to trade it for full store value. I am not sure why. Maybe they were being nice. Who knows?

So I thought long and hard about what would be the best thing to trade for - what would be marketable? What could I move on E-Bay or Craigslist, or something?

The decision?

Swiss Army Watches.

For the price of that ring, I was able to get 4 Swiss Army watches that each had a unique design. I thought it would be easy to sell them! They were not that expensive in the first place, and people would want them. Right?

Wrong. Looking on E-Bay, it seemed that people just weren't bidding. And the ones that did sell were going for prices like 25% of what I paid for them. Not worth selling them. So they sat in my closet. For years. Then last summer, my friends Ellen and Mary heard about them, and were interested in getting them for their significant other and father, respectively. I decided to sell them for the same price they'd have gone on E-Bay. Rather give a great deal to a friend than to a stranger. Two down. Two to go. The other two sat in the closet for another 9 months.

Today, I was getting dressed, and I looked in the closet, and saw the boxes of the two watches. I couldn't even remember which ones were remaining. I opened up the boxes, and looked at them. The black one looks nice, actually. I always liked it. Why I haven't worn it for the past 2 years is something of a mystery.

So I'm wearing it today.

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