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Sex + Relationships

Her Gay Best Friend: Confessions of a Third Wheel

We need to talk.

Forgive me biffle, for I have chagrined. It has been four weeks since my last confession, when I admitted that I thought your brother was attractive.

I can't tell you how sorry I am for that. I didn't realize that your sister just has short hair and muscular arms.

I have something very important that I need to get off my chest. This is a matter of emotional turmoil, of the inner struggle that causes a rational young man to think unspeakable thoughts and do unspeakable things. Over the last few months I have grown to resent you. I have schemed in ways that I am not proud of, and relished the disastrous results that I have wrought.

I apologize for all of these transgressions, but I really couldn't help myself. For a man can't think clearly when he is repeatedly subjected to one of the most demeaning, uncomfortable experiences there is: being The Third Wheel.

Yes, it is all too often that I find myself in this position. I'll show up for our dinner date only to find him stroking your arm as you pick at your edamame. And our Drew Barrymore film festival last week became more than a little uncomfortable when he put you between his legs like a tub of buttered popcorn and casually sucked on your fingers.

It is at these moments that I feel much like Ryan Seacrest on American Idol: entirely unnecessary and resented by half of the people in the room.

You can imagine what this can do to a person. But while Seacrest can take solace in the sexual favors of eager, young Idol hopefuls, I am left to find other ways to work out my frustration.

And I have found ways, many creative ways. I have become a master of passive aggression, the king of unspoken resentment. I have been waging silent war on your relationship for months, and you haven't seemed to notice.

But now it's time to come clean. Not only is carrying on this way a detriment to our relationship, but the undue stress of keeping these secrets might take a toll on my skin. And I plan on having the elasticity of a 21-year-old for at least the next ten years.

I have listed several of my offenses below. Please recognize that these actions didn't come from a place of anger or hate, but rather a place of selfish envy and schadenfreude.

Confession 1: Sometimes the two of us will be talking in your bedroom and he'll arrive in the midst of our conversation. I'll notice his telltale expression, the shifty stare and blushing cheeks that scream, "I desperately want to be alone with my girlfriend for some much needed hanky panky." I'm a man. I know that expression far too well.

I usually take this opportunity to launch into an elaborate story about my father's kidney stones. The thought of your man's testicles slowly fading to a lovely shade of cerulean helps ease the pain of my sexless existence.

Confession 2: Each time you guys get into a fight, I'm deeply concerned. I hug you close to me and spout out a string of reassuring sentiments to calm your troubled mind.

"He's being totally inconsiderate," I'll say. "It's okay. I'm sure he'll call tomorrow and apologize about the whole thing," I'll promise. "He would say that! Poorly endowed jerk!" I'll remark with utterly convincing passion.

As these words are coming out of my mouth, I'm really thinking, "Awesome! Now I have someone to watch my Netflix movie with tonight."

Confession 3: Every now and then, we'll go out to dinner as a group. And at some point between campus and the restaurant I'll look around and realize that in a group of seven, there are three couples and myself. It is at this moment that the Akon remix of "Mr. Lonely" starts playing in my head, replacing the Snoopy theme that normally accompanies my life.

When the hostess seats us at the restaurant, I'll pick a seat that makes it impossible for you two to sit next to each other. Honestly, if I have to chew on my lo mein while every else holds hands and snuggles, I fear I might projectile vomit on every last one of you.

Confession 4: For a birthday or anniversary, occasionally you turn to me for advice on what your boyfriend might like as a gift. With my unquestionably male perspective of the situation, I offer you sage wisdom on all matters man, and generate some quality gift ideas.

I apologize if my ideas don't go over that well. I assumed that plenty of other men would appreciate a DVD box set of Gilmore Girls and a fresh bottle of KY as much as I would.


Confession 5: At any event, be it a party, dance, or most recently Spring Break, it's never long before one of our friends whips out her digital camera in the hopes of gathering evidence that she does, in fact, have a social life. She'll later post these pictures on Facebook to prove it to the online world.

As the group scrambles to strike the perfect model pose, I make sure to slide myself between you and your man. I figure it will be less tempting to crop the rest of us out and make it your romantic profile picture if I'm in between you two doing my "O" face.

Confession 6: On the rare occasion that you doubt your bedroom abilities, you turn to me for insight into the male anatomy. It is at that moment that I cease to be Scott, the friend, and become Professor Rosenfeld, sex educator.

Lesson 1 on the agenda - All men love anal stimulation.
Lesson 2 - "What the hell are you doing?!" is a man's way of saying, "Sweet Holy Moses, that feels good!"

Confession 7:

Just when I thought I said all I could say, my chick on the side says she got one on the way.

Oh, sorry. That last one was Usher's confession. My mistake.

I hope you can forgive me for all of my misdeeds and secrets. I worried that you might be angry, but I feel that it's important for our friendship that I not keep things from you. After all, the more secrets that we keep, the greater the threat that we'll end up as frenemies, plotting against each other with malicious gossip and weight-gain nutrition bars.

And frankly, that would be tragic. Your waistline looks good just the way it is.

Scott Rosenfeld is a junior at Carnegie Mellon University pursuing a double major in Professional Writing and Psychology. Originally from the D.C metropolitan area, Scott grew up with a great passion for the written word. From the time he first read Dr. Seuss, he realized the overwhelming power of human language, as well as the limitless joy of making up words for the sake of rhyme. On campus, Scott keeps busy working as the prose editor for the Oakland Review Literary Journal and an editor for the Thought: Undergraduate Research Journal. He was also recently elected to the position of editor-in-chief for The Cut, Carnegie Mellon’s music magazine, for which he has worked as the copy manager for the past year. As editor-in-chief, he hopes to buy all of his staff a thneed. Because a thneed, he feels, is something that everyone needs.
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