“My Boyfriend Is Hotter Than Me”

… And it sucks. I’ve suspected it for months, and now that he’s met all my friends, I can no longer deny it. A pal even described us as “the funny one who dates the handsome one.” Suffice it to say, I wasn’t the handsome one.

We met three years ago at San Diego Comic-Con. He lived in San Francisco and was on assignment as a photojournalist, while I was flogging a comic book that I’d written in New York, where I live and work as a fashion editor.

I knew he was nice to look at-tall and gray-eyed-but I was casually appreciative. In classic convention style, we made out at a hilarious fusion restaurant. We lived 3,000 miles apart, and neither one of us was in the market for anything serious. Fourteen months later, he moved into my tiny Brooklyn apartment.

This is how his attractiveness snuck up on me. We’d been dating a year but logged just six weeks face-to-face. He didn’t have a New York look that slid neatly into a familiar hierarchy -he’s outdoorsy and rangy, sort of ABC-show hot. In fact, he looks like Michael Vartan of Alias fame. It wasn’t until later that I discovered his colleagues referred to him as not just Jon but handsome Jon.

By the time my entire peanut gallery had congratulated me with enthusiastic surprise, I was self-conscious. Sure, my eating habits were garbage and I could stand to run around the block, but what the hell? It was hard enough adjusting to cramped living quarters. It didn’t help that my new roomie looked rad with his clothes off.

I decided to take control. I would get fit, our comparative hotness would be equalized, and my boyfriend could suck it. I hit the gym six days a week for resistance training, confusing muscles in quick bursts of energy because the internet told me to. I went on the Paleolithic diet, which cuts out sugar, dairy, processed foods, and gluten-basically all the delicious things.

Over three months, I dropped 10 pounds. I could sit in bodycon dresses that I could previously only stand sideways in. I was triumphant but mean. When my poor boyfriend bought ice cream, it was war.

Then during an exhausting fight about nothing (when I was distracted by the cookie he was eating), I had an epiphany. When we’d met, our flavors of crazy jibed beautifully. We trusted each other’s tastes and loyalties and were best friends. To begrudge him his hotness was the ugliest I could possibly be. Plus, he’s a dude. A dude who thinks every woman between a size 2 and 8 is a 4. So who cares? Besides, we’re in it for the long haul, and who knows how we’ll age. I could take him. I’m Asian. I’ll be inscrutably well-preserved for decades during which he could lose all his hair. The baldness will probably bring out his eyes… bastard.

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