Forget about the boy!

The musical Thoroughly Modern Millie has a number in it called “Forget About the Boy”.

It’s an old musical, perhaps not many of you have heard of it.  In the song, Millie tries to persuade herself to forget about a boy who she is falling in love with.

The title’s been haunting me all day.

Forget about the boy.  The ex.

Forget about the boy.  My friend who hired me, who is turning out to be a terrible manager.

Forget about the boy.  The boy who grew up, found me, and messed with my heart and mind, for good or for ill.

They are all boys.



Right now I’m stuck, so stuck, on a dilemma at work.  My “boss” needs rescuing, he’s well on his way to screwing up something. It’s so simple, I could fix it in two hours. He doesn’t see it, or is too lazy to deal with it, or can’t be bothered. Someone’s asked him for help; he doesn’t hear their cries.  I don’t mean to be so dramatic.  It’s not life threatening. It’s just something that could be done much better, with less fuss.  My workplace will lose lots of money if he doesn’t do it.  I like this scrappy agency, I respect the work the people do there, so he seems thoughtless and casual about the efforts of his coworkers.

I can’t stop thinking about it.

Should I point it out?  I’m trying to break the habit of rescuing men.  Because when you rescue (man or woman, child or adult), you teach dependency. I’ve realized that’s when my resentment starts to grow.  Especially when he basks in the glow and has not lifted one itty bitty finger.

But here’s the litany in my head. “They need help.  Don’t leave them hanging, just do it.”

Then, “How could he be so stupid? How could he not see this coming?” Or worse, how could he not care?  Maybe the real question is, “How could he not care about me?”.

I know, it’s not about me.

I don’t want to waste my precious time and my gifts on phoning it in. I feel good when I use my talents.

Not everyone feels this way, and I can hardly stand it.  Where’s my partner in conquering all? In making something wonderful..even a microcosm of wonderful..a little tiny bit of great.


One of my friends says “Isn’t it your job to make your boss look good?”.  Is it? Is that my job? That sounds like the secretaries on Mad Men.  I’m not one of the secretaries on Mad Men.  But sometimes those ideas just torture me, or I have this thought that I’m letting someone down by not sweeping in like Wonder Woman.   Bizarre.


Until last week, I was also stuck in my garage.  With a load of junk.


One big boatload of stuff in that garage, all belonging to my ex, which stayed nearly a year longer than he did.  

“Please move it out.” I begged. I reminded. I emailed. I pleaded.

I finally shut up. He has left some stuff behind, and I’m not saying anything.

He’ll get it or it will go to the Goodwill. Time will tell what priorities I’ll emphasize and he can see if he beats the donation truck.

Original version:  Plan, arrange, remind, beg, wish, ask, do it myself, become resentful.

Communication breaks down. Relationship falls apart.

Here it is again. A little last gasp repetition of my marriage.


I guess I don’t fully understand what a partnership is. I have hopes for partnership for teamwork, hopes, hopes, and maybe I should release those in a cloud of fire and smoke along with my resentments.  Are my expectations too high? Am I looking for Lerner and Lowe, for Lennon and McCartney, for Burns and Allen?  

What IS this?

And here comes the song again.

Forget about the boy.







2 comments on “Forget about the boy!

  1. I often struggle with my level of expectations and coming to the conclusion that they are too high. That it is my fault my expectations are “unattainable” and “unrealistic” which is why many fall so short. And then I think…well, I guess somebody has to have high standards. Lowering standards breeds complacency. Complacency will keep us from recognizing our own downfall. I refuse to go down without a fight…

  2. Pauline Autumn says:

    Exactly my struggle. The disappointment is painful. Maybe one of the answers is to be more selective about who can partner with me, in all senses of the word. A more careful assessment instead of my fantasies going all out there on their own, like orphaned children who will take whatever they can get. I’m glad you shared this.

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