Every Father’s Day, I send anonymous “Happy Father’s Day!” cards to every guy I’ve ever slept with, hoping it creates some suspicion in him that he may be a father. I don’t sign them, obviously, because they’re anonymous, and the point isn’t to let them know I’m crazy, you idiots. I just want them to think they may have, at some point, fathered a child, unbeknownst to them. Within a few days of mailing the cards, the corresponding texts come rushing in, with about a 99% return rate, thus reopening the gates of communication.
I’ve never received a text that flat-out said, “Did you send me a father’s day card?” They are usually vague texts full of “How are you?” and “What’s new?” type generalities. I know they’re also texting every other girl they’ve been with in hopes one will ‘fess up and admit that she didn’t go through with that abortion, but it allows me to decide with which of my exes it would be worth attempting to rekindle a flame. Usually, I’m delighted to find that most of them are far worse off than I am, which is satisfying enough in itself, but if someone does happen to seem like a good prospect, it doesn’t hurt to suggest meeting up to grab drinks sometime.
I realize this is extreme, but there are also a million other ways to get an ex-boyfriend to start paying attention to you again, without letting him know that you secretly made the first move.
1. The “accidental” Facebook unfriend move.
You delete him from your friends list, then wait a few weeks to send him a request. He’ll be confused that you two weren’t friends to begin with, which will more than likely bring him to send you a message asking how you’ve been. He’ll probably even apologize, thinking he may have unfriended you by accident. Jackpot.
2. The “new phone” move.
Every eight months or so, I post a Facebook status to let the world know I got a new phone and need everyone to text me his or her number. Of course, any ex who’s still vaguely interested will find a way to text me “just so I have his number.” This is a perfect opportunity to strike up a conversation. Inversely, I’ll occasionally scroll through my phone book and decide to text someone I haven’t talked to in a while, lead in with, “Heyyyy…sorry, I got a new phone and a bunch of my contacts didn’t transfer over. Who is this?” Works like a charm.
3. The “mutual friend” move.
Oh my God, what a coincidence, you ran into someone the other day that just happened to know your ex. So weird. Obviously, you need to contact him: “Small world, I ran into [insert name], who said he interned with you two summers ago. Anyway, hope you’re well!” You never ran into this person. This is kind of a tricky move, because it requires a lot of stalking, but it’s awesome if you can pull it off. You’ll need to find a few of your ex’s Facebook friends that you had definitely never met, determine what the relationship those people have with your ex, and ensure he will more than likely not talk to the person of your choosing afterward. This usually requires a little stalking of the innocent third party as well, but whatever. It’s best if you claim to have met at a bar, just in case your ex does happen to mention you to his distant friend, who will then chalk it up to “Oh, I was drunk, but yeah, I think I remember her.” Ha. Ha.
4. The “Throwback Thursday” move.
Obviously, you utilize Throwback Thursday and post a group shot from a few years ago that your ex happens to be in. Once he’s tagged, he’ll probably start feeling nostalgic and want to send you a “How are you?” text message. You win.
5. The “accidental phone call” move.
Thanks to the convenience of the smart phone, nobody “accidentally” calls anyone anymore….except for you, of course. You need to pick a time when your ex will obviously be unable to answer your call, then give him a ring. It works best if you “accidentally” leave a voicemail of static. He’ll be busy in class, or in a meeting, or at a funeral, whatever, and see he has a voicemail from you. From there, he’ll be prompted to text you a, “Sorry I missed your call, I was delivering a eulogy for my great aunt. What’s up?” From there, the floor is yours. You can go on to tell him you’re really sorry, that was a total accident, you don’t know how you ended up calling him, but you’re really happy to hear from him in any case.
Texting an ex is only wrong if you text first. Everybody knows that. The rules are far less clear when he texts you, and even less clear if you’ve mindfucked him into getting in touch with you. Usually, you’ll realize you broke up for a reason, because he was a total fucking idiot, but at least you’ll get a few dates out of it, right?