“But what does it mean?” he wailed. We were sitting on Sam’s couch, looking at his ex-boyfriend’s Instagram feed, which currently featured four photos that Sam himself had taken. The posts were photos of Jamie reduced to black and white, with a single word in curling font at the bottom: breathe, renew, beauty, strength. I’d rolled my eyes the first time I saw them, a reaction that had only worsened as I’d been forced to listen to Sam dissect the filter, the word, the timing, the history of the photo, and every posted comment.
“Nothing,” I said. “It doesn’t mean anything.” Besides the fact that Sam had taken the pictures, which was never mentioned, there was no indication that Jamie had even thought about him before posting. Although he was my friend, Jamie was careless in the way that beautiful people often were. It was this unwilling sympathy that had brought me here to try to convince Sam that this was not, in fact, an attempt to get back together. “Look, boo –” I started.
“There!” he said, and jabbed his finger at a shadow in one of the photos. “That’s my hand there.” He plucked violently at one of the tissues balled in his lap, littering the couch with bits of mucus-infused fluff. “Bitch can’t even crop right.”
“That’s right,” I said, sharing a long-suffering look with Sam’s roommate who was currently scraping macaroni out of a pot. “Do you really want to be with someone who can’t even use Photoshop?”
“The sex was really good, though,” he said thoughtfully, touching the screen next to Jamie’s face. “I never thought of myself as a size queen, but…” He shook his head and trailed off. Behind Sam, his roommate was miming a noose around her neck.
“So buy a dildo,” I said. “The point is, it’s over. You need to move on.”