317. What Goes Around Comes Around
15 - 0, Charles.
Two months into her marriage with Trey, Charlotte's life appeared to be a bed of roses. At least that's what it looked like to an objective onlooker.
Can you believe my boys have been playing each other since prep school? They're still not tired of it.
Come on. Let the girls play.
She's wearing pastels. It's whites only.
We can make an exception this one time.
Your father would roll over in his grave if he heard you talking like that.
Charlotte hasn't been issued a copy of the MacDougal house rules.
No, but I think it's time I got one.
You’ll find it next to the Bible, on your bed stand.
Very funny. Tradition is a very undervalued virtue. You know, girls. Marrying a MacDougal is marrying history.
Yes. I guess I better go change.
Charlotte had no interest in hearing any more about the MacDougal family history. Her history with Trey was depressing enough. After a few half-baked attempts set up at his failing sex life, Trey seemed to give up. The only place he even tried to score nowadays was on the tennis court.
- Good morning. - Morning. Beautiful roses.
I don't know what it is. I'm strangely drawn to him.
Of course you are. You know the man can plough.
He had the most intoxicating scent. Like sweat mixed with something else, something sweet yet pungent.
- Manure? - And these full, sensuous lips.
Does he water plants in Manhattan?
This is insane. I’m married. I can't be looking at gardeners.
What’s the point of being in the suburbs, if you're not gonna fuck a gardener?
He was so tanned and muscular. The sweat ran down from his chest onto his perfectly defined stomach.
You read a couple of Harlequin Romances in high school, haunts you rest of your life.
OK, whatever you do, don't look up.
Oh, my God, did you see the way she looked at me?
Did you see the look her friend shot us?
- Contempt, like I was Pol Pot something. - He's dead.
- She wishes I was. - Who does she think she is?
Big's wife. God. That was awful. I can't believe that there is a person in New York who could hate me that much. Oh, God.
After lunch I was so devastated by Natasha's withering look that I decided my only recourse was to go shopping. But I took a wrong turn looking for the right shoes, and somewhere south of Houston Street I quite literally lost my direction.
Excuse me Sir, I know this sounds ridiculous. Can you tell me which way is West Broadway?
- Give me your bag. - What?
- Your bag. - It's a baguette. - Let me have it.
I couldn't believe it. 15 years in New York, and when the city was getting safe, I got mugged.
- Is this for real? - Your watch and your ring.
- Jesus. - And your Manolo Blahniks.
- What? No. - Give me your fucking Blahniks.
These guys weren't just after money anymore. They were after fashion.
Please, sir, they're my favorite pair. I got them half price at a sample sale.
Somebody stop him, he took my strappy sandals. Somebody...Gross!
I've been robbed! I've been robbed.
He said, "Give me your Manolo Blahniks", which I thought was a joke. Then the next thing I know I'm barefoot on a New York City sidewalk in the middle of summer.
Anything else other than the watch, the bag, the ring, and the shoes?
- God, are you all right? - I'm fine. Thanks for coming.
- I can't believe he took your shoes. - I know. Probably got trichinosis.
- You only get that from pork. - I'm sure I stepped on a piece of it somewhere.
Detective Stevens, this is my friend, my lawyer, Miranda Hobbes.
Nice to meet you. Any chance of catching this guy?
We hope so. Maybe you can come with me and read him his Miranda rights. Sorry, that was lame. - It was funny. A little cop humor. - Are you Irish?
- No. Why? - You have beautiful red hair.
Kinda like anybody can be Irish with the right colorist.
Very funny. A sense of humor, I like that in a lawyer. It's very rare. Miss, I'll get back to you as soon as I have something. Can I have your card? I need your card.
- Sure. – I mean, just in case.
- Sure. - Thanks.
I can't wear these.
I'll call you.
I don't understand this. I get mugged, and you get him? I guess that's my karma.
Just because he said he'll call doesn't mean he will.
What are you talking about? The man was smitten with you.
He probably wants free legal advice. That's generally my karma.
That evening Samantha discovered that her number had been passed around as well.
This is a message for Sam Jones. Sam, if you're getting this, it's Brian. I'll see you tomorrow around 10:00. Can't wait. Later.
Sam, are you there? Anyway, this is Rob, Mike's friend. You don't know me, but I'll be there tomorrow night with some very fine party favorites.
- Hello, Sam? - Yes, this is Sam.
- Sam Jones? - Yes. This is Sam Jones. Who is this?
The Sam Jones who's having the big blowup party tomorrow night?
Exactly who is this Sam Jones? And where is this fabulous party?
The next evening, Miranda had a date with my detective.
I'm having an anxiety attack. The most gorgeous man I've met is in my living room for twenty minutes. And I can't figure out what to wear.
All right. Breathe. Shut your eyes, and go with your first instinct.
The problem is I've been in here for 20 minutes. By now he thinks I'm some kind of a freak.
I'll be right there.
What are getting you so worked up about?
He's too good-looking for me. He is out of my league. I don't have any outfits that go with Hunk.
Wait a minute. Maybe this is karma. You're finally getting what you deserve.
Right. Maybe after years of dating odd men, the universe is throwing me a bone.
If you're lucky, a boner as well.
OK, I can do this.
Now go and have fun. Tell Detective Stevens, if he sees a woman wearing last year’s pink suede Manolo Blahnik strappy sandals, bring her in for questioning immediately .
While I always ascribed thoughts of karma to the fortune cookie school psychology, I wondered, does a string of bad dates really equal one good one? And will treating someone badly in one relationship ensure that you'll be treated badly in the next? Does everything that goes around really come around? If so, will it come around to bite you in the ass? Is there such a thing as relationship karma?
Later that night, I agreed to accompany Samantha to a party thrown by the mysterious Sam Jones.
I can't believe we're going to the party of a total stranger.
It's not a total stranger, we do share the same name. Why are you walking so slow?
I keep waiting for someone to jump out and cautiously steal my bra.
If the guy's a loser, I'll tell him to stop having his friends call me, and we'll go for dinner. If not, who knows? His friend sounded cute on the phone.
How can you tell someone is cute over the phone?
I can. Besides, Washington Square, very money address. I feel like there's some kind of cosmic purpose to all this. It's too much of a coincidence.
What do you think the cosmic purpose was of my getting snubbed by Natasha the other day?
If I told you I had a piece of information about Big and Natasha, would you consider it cosmic connection or just a random act of gossip?
I guess I'd have to hear it first.
Natasha left Big. The marriage is over. She's back working for Ralph Lauren.
- Oh, my God. Who told you that? - A little bird I fucked at Ralph Lauren.
- You waited 15 blocks to tell me that? - I wanted you to have fun at the party.
I can't believe I'm responsible for breaking up their marriage.
You're not responsible. It probably wouldn't have worked anyway.
- I don't think I could feel any worse. - Here we are.
- It's a dorm. - Look at that, I feel worse.
- Do you think these cute boys are still in college? - Yes.
I'm going to find Sam Jones, and then we're outta here.
Excuse me. Could you tell me where I can find Sam Jones?
- Sam Jones? - Yeah. Who are you?
- Sam Jones. - Excuse me?
It appears that we have a little problem here. We have the same name, and the same exchange, and it appears I'm getting all of your fucking calls.
If you're getting all my "fucking" calls, that explains why I'm still a virgin.
While Samantha was wondering what kind of message the universe was trying to send her, Miranda had no doubt.
This was really fun, and I really would invite you in, but you've been in, and I’m gonna have a very huge day tomorrow, which isn't to say I wouldn't like to see you again. I really would, if you'd like see me although it’s probably...
- I'll call you. - Ok.
She felt like she had just hit the cosmic jackpot.
Please don't tell anyone we were here.
Some of those boys were cute.
- Some of them were boys, young enough... - Don't you dare say it.
- Excuse me, ladies. - Excuse me, Mom.
Stop! Natasha fell down the stairs, now I fall down the stairs. This is an open and shut case of karmic retribution.
Ok, they’re drunk. It was an accident.
This was not an accident. Yesterday, I get mugged favorite shoes gone, now I can't even get a freaking taxi. I can always get a taxi. My karma is shot.
If everything happens for a reason, why am I getting all those calls for Sam Jones? What's the karmic connection there?
I don’t know about your karma. I only know about my own karma.
Maybe the universe is telling me I should fuck that cute virgin and give him the great first-time experience that I never had.
That's not karma, that's statutory rape.
Taxi, Here, here. Come on. What's up?
Meanwhile across town, Charlotte was getting a message of her own.
Wake up. You had a nightmare. You're all wet.
Later that week, my knee still hurting from my karma trip down the stairs, I decided to take matters into my own hands.
Ralph Lauren, Natasha's desk. Can’t be speaking?
Yes, I'd like to speak to Natasha, please. Carrie Bradshaw calling.
- What's this regarding? - It's personal. - Hold.
I didn't know how to tell an assistant that it was a matter of cosmic significance.
- She's in a meeting. - I'll hold.
I don't mean to be rude, but you'll be holding forever.
OK then, I'll hold forever.
Obviously, this wasn't gonna be easy. I had tough karma to overcome.
The next week, Charlotte flirted with her own karma.
Where did you get such a green thumb?
Runs in the family. We're gardeners for three generations.
What a wonderful tradition. I'm Charlotte, by the way. Trey's wife.
I know. I'm Burt.
These roses are so beautiful. What kind are they?
A special hybrid of American Beauty. They're very fragrant.
Charlotte's karma flirted back in a most unexpected way.
Downtown Samantha was working out some karmic issues of her own.
I just came over to apologize for all those calls.
Thank you. Anything else?
I've been waiting for a woman like you my whole life. You are the hottest thing I've ever seen.
- Slow down. - Oh, Lord. Oh, my Lord! Here we go.
- That was awesome. - Yes, it was.
- Sam? - Yes, Sam?
- I think I love you. - Honey, that wasn't love. That was sex.
- No, ma'am. I...I love you. - Time to move.
- Do I have to? - Oh, yes. I've got stuff to do.
- Goodbye to the sweetest lips I've ever kissed. - Bye-bye.
Later that night, the MacDougals were enjoying their cocktail hour, which generally lasted from 5:00pm to last man standing.
I beat you three sets in a row, Charles.
We didn't finish that last set, damn it. It was getting dark as you recall.
- Boys, stop bickering. - Sandwiches, ma'am?
- No. - No, thank you.
I certainly had an interesting day. I went riding in the morning. In the afternoon, I took a long walk around the property and saw Charlotte kissing the gardener.
Charlotte, you're a MacDougal now.
Back in the city Samantha came to home to discover that the universe had sent her many messages.
You have 35 new messages.
Sam, it's Sam Jones. Call me. I can't stop thinking about you.
I have to see you tonight. It's really important.
Sam, it's Sam. I don't think I can live without you, OK?
Are you there, babe? I have to see you tonight. It's really important.
OK, Sam. It's Sam.
Across town, Miranda met her karmic treasure for dinner.
After ten years, the firm finally made me partner two months ago. Or was it three? I'm losing track.
- Congratulations. - Thank you.
- Can I get you another drink? – Another Double vodka martini, please.
- And you, sir? - I'm fine.
- Would you care to order? - Could we have a minute?
Take your time.
You know I thought about law school. I loved Columbo so much as a kid...
Miranda realized that every woman in the room was staring at her date.
That’s the kind of case, typical case that I see on the job. Turns out it's not as exciting as you might think. It's not homicide...
She knew what they were thinking: what is that incredibly attractive man doing with her?
If your friend hadn't lost her shoes, I wouldn't be sitting here right now.
- Here you go. - Thank you.
So she drank to feel better about herself.
Six vodka martinis later, she was feeling pretty damn good.
- You're hot. - And you're a little drunk.
I'm fine. I'm great. Hot, hot, hot. You may be the most beautiful man that I've ever been with.
You're not bad yourself.
I'm no Mena Suvari, but I'm great in bed.
When Trey didn't come to bed that night, Charlotte went looking for him.
- What are you doing out here? - Improving my serve.
Stop. You're upset, and what I did was so wrong. I'm sorry.
What can I say? Apparently I'm unable to meet your needs, so from time to time, as much as I detest it, I guess I'm just gonna have to look the other way.
I don't want a husband who looks the other way. I want a husband who takes me to his arms, makes me not want to kiss the gardener.
No marriage is perfect. So much of what we have is wonderful. We can have separate lives and still be together. It's totally acceptable.
As Charlotte looked at her perfect husband on his perfect tennis court at their family's perfect country house, she realized the one thing that was missing was that perfect connection with an imperfect person.
Trey, when we get back to the city, I think we should separate for a while.
Seven unreturned phone calls, and still no response from Natasha. The Buddhists believe you pay for what you do wrong in this life in the next. I knew what I'd done. I just didn't think I could wait a lifetime to be forgiven.
The next morning, Miranda woke up with the worst hangover of her life.
On her hall table, she discovered that Detective Stevens had left a number for her local AA chapter. Downtown Samantha got her karmic retribution.
I love you, Sam Jones.
She realized in screwing Sam Jones, she wound up screwing herself.
I love you, Sam Jones.
A couple of days later, Charlotte came home to her old apartment. It was good fortune that she had only sublet it, not to mention good sense.
Not wanting to come back in my next life as a dung beetle, I asked Samantha's assistant to pump Natasha's assistant to find out where she was having lunch.
- I need to talk to you. - I'm gonna scream.
Please don’t. I'm only gonna stay a minute. I tried to call you at work, but...Anyway, it's not important. Can I have a sip of this? Thanks. I heard about your marriage. It's just so terrible. I never meant for any of this to happen. If there was something I could do to take it all away, I would. But I can't. So I came here today because I needed to say how sorry I am. I am deeply sorry for what I did to you. It was wrong. I'm sorry.
- Are you through? - Yes. Thank you for listening.
- Wait. I'm sorry, too. - You are?
Yes. I'm sorry about it all. I'm sorry he moved to Paris and fell in love with me. I'm sorry that we ever got married. I'm sorry he cheated on me with you, and I'm sorry that I pretended to ignore it for as long as I did. I'm sorry I found you in my apartment, fell down the stairs and broke my tooth. I'm very sorry that after much painful dental surgery this tooth is still a different color than this tooth. Finally, I'm sorry that you felt the need to come down here. Not only have you ruined my marriage, you've ruined my lunch. I guess that's just what I had to say.
I was just leaving.
As I walked away, I realized my actions had set into motion a karmic chain of events that put Natasha back on the singles market. As if single women didn't have it hard enough. Somewhere out there, Big was alone again. The universe may not always play fair, but at least it's got a hell of a sense of humor.