I’ve been seeing someone behind my boyfriend’s back.

It all started innocently enough. He eased my stress when I put up my place for rent, and when I was thinking about getting a new job. But things have gone from casual flirtation to full-blown addiction. I check in with him every morning when I wake up, again when I get to work, and about five more times throughout the day.

His name? Craig. My drug? His list.

My obsession really got out of control when my boyfriend, Dan, and I decided to move in together. At first, it was fun browsing through the listings. A two-bedroom duplex with skylights and wood floors? A one-bedroom charmer with ocean views and a hot tub? Yes, please! But then I went to see them. The one-bedroom smelled like ass and the duplex was literally perched on the Bath Street freeway exit. Next time you exit there, give a wave. I’m sure the future residents will appreciate it.

But there was that apartment in a historic building on State Street. The kitchen floor was made of blue-and-white tiles, the fireplace worked, and the closets were as big as my first studio apartment. It was perfect. And it was already rented.

So, these days, I’m feeling like a jilted lover. I fell in love with a one-bedroom duplex on Arrellaga Street, only to realize we had nothing in common. And that condo by the creek I was willing to settle for? I didn’t move fast enough, and someone else took my place.

Could it be that I’m getting my heart broken by Craig and his real estate to distract myself from my real fear: getting my heart broken? After all, moving in together is a big commitment. What if it’s a mistake?

But here I am, holed up in Dan’s apartment while he’s away on business. My dirty laundry is on his floor and my shampoo and razor are in his bathroom. All that stands between me and cohabitation is the termination of my current lease. It’s just a signature, so why does it seem to signify so much?


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