by Luke Strickler
These past two years have been fun. Amazing in fact. Not only has this been my longest relationship, but also my favorite one. Don’t let the fact this is also my first relationship distract from that. But look, I think it’s time we talked about the elephant in the room. You. You are the elephant in this room. And I don’t mean that to be cute, or say that you have to change. I’m talking about the fact that you’re literally a five-ton African elephant.
At first I didn’t want to believe it. I thought “that’s impossible. There’s no way my girlfriend has been one of the largest land animals on Earth the whole time we’ve been dating.” But then I took a second look. And this isn’t me saying that I don’t like bigger girls. No, this is about me, and my inability to deal with the fact you’re from a different Order, Family, and even Genus than me! Imagine what our parents would say! Mine would tell me they're disappointed, and yours would probably just make trumpet sounds with their trunks - I don’t pretend to know the culture.
I would always tell my buddies how cute it was that you were scared of mice. You’d see one in the kitchen and freak out, jumping on the table. And they’d agree, but I began to recognize something underneath that, especially when they’d tell me that you were a four legged, gray animal from another continent. I just thought they were jealous, or at least racist for that last part. I’d say “why does it matter where she’s from?” and they’d respond, “Because her real name is Loxodonta Africana, and she’s an African elephant, dude.”
If I’m going to be honest, I’ve known for a while now, I just didn’t want to admit it to myself. The signs were adding up, and I just couldn’t keep myself in the dark any longer. Watching your favorite movie, "Dumbo," with you had stopped giving me the same joy it once did. Trips to the zoo with you began to feel morally wrong. Even the sex… to put it briefly, I couldn’t keep putting my junk in your truck.
I wish I could go back. Back to that fateful day you and I met at the circus. Back to you, listening to my problems through your big, affectionate ears. Back to the days when it was just me and you, and not me and “Jumbo”, a 10,000 pound mammal from the plains of the African savanna. I’ll miss those days. Miss them almost as much as I’ll miss your smile, which I have now been told are tusks, and are just continuations of teeth, made of ivory. Ivory that I’ll miss dearly.
Before I go, I want you to know one last time at I love you, elephant or no elephant, although you most certainly are one, and I want you to know that I’ll always remember you, and I know that you’ll never forget me. Because you are an elephant.
Luke Strickler is a writer in NYC, and a person everywhere else.