Hold up! I know everything about your life despite not knowing you at all. You are living a lie and deserve to be attacked! Except remember that part about not knowing you at all? That kinda invalidates everything I'm about to say, but I'm still gonna fight you and not admit everything I said is deranged! These, along with some much more unsavory thoughts, must have been swirling through Regina's mind as she went on a gossip-fueled rampage against the completely innocent Naomi and Henry. According to Naomi's story, Regina didn't need much of a reason to attack her next victims, so she pulled a whole lot of gibberish out of thin air. If you speak loudly and forcefully enough, you can still win an argument, right? Well Naomi wouldn't just accept her fate, and she found the perfect way to turn Regina's gossiping methods against her! This story goes from 0 to 100 real fast, so get ready for an argument you'll be glad you don't have to listen to personally!
It had been two years after Naomi decided to move with her husband back to his small hometown in rural Japan. Because she wasn't from the country, they make for an odd couple, at least according to the many people who would stare and take not-so-secret photos of them. Even eating at restaurants was an exercise in not flipping out, since children would straight-up stare at the couple the entire dinner, fish hanging out of their tiny mouths. The couple weren't rare Pokémon, but at this point, Naomi was tempted to hand out trading cards of the two of them.
There is also some important context to add at this point, the happy couple lived by a small U.S. military base in the town, but they weren't a part of it at all. Naomi recalls how, "The closer you are downtown, the more American families you see. I'm constantly mistaken for being military by Americans and Japanese, which is understandable. Besides myself, I only know five other interracial marriages here. It's always locals who ask about my 'American husband' when I'm out alone". Naomi would have to respond to these invasive questions with a handy bit of Japanese, which translated to, "My husband is Japanese and I live here". At that point, she really should have printed the response out on a t-shirt and worn it around literally everywhere.
The then-happy couple decided to brave the lack of parking space to enjoy the quaint downtown area one day. Unfortunately for them, that day would turn out to be a dumpster fire of social interaction with some nasty locals.
Naomi and Henry were literally holding hands and walking, which wasn't an invitation for to be attacked. Unfortunately some people do not understand the concept of an invitation. Suddenly Naomi heard someone loudly exclaim, "WOW!" from behind them. Naomi turned around, only to find an American woman doing the absolute most to look upset. She was flanked by two other moms with three kids each. This suburban army was on the hunt, and they had set their sights on poor Naomi and her husband. This American woman, whom we'll call Regina, blurted out, "Seriously?! Another little homewrecker is doing this in PUBLIC?!"
Naomi and Henry were literally just trying to live their lives, and they didn't want to get into anything with Regina and her weird followers. Instead, the couple found a table at the nearby Starbucks. But that didn't stop the Mom Army from crowing them at a nearby table. Did I mention that the kids were all in very large and obnoxious strollers? Well now I did, and it didn't really help the whole "seething with rage" vibe that Regina had going on. Regina told the couple, "Excuse me, but you need to keep whatever you're doing in your messed up home! Doing that in public in front of families to see if so disgusting and immoral! My kids don't need to see such a bad display of marriage!"
Naomi recalled thinking, "I'm SO confused, as was my husband. Who knew drinking coffee outside was such a crime against humanity and marriage?!"
Naomi simply responded, "I'm sorry what did we do?"
Regina sniped back, "You know exactly what you're doing!" and pointed to Naomi's wedding ring. Naomi was pretty uncertain, but a sick idea started to form in her head of what Regina believed to be going on.
Regina sneered at Naomi and exclaimed, "Good lord, does your husband know about this? Is he on a ship right now? That is so like a dependapotamus!"
Her mom followers laughed in support. For some much-needed context, a dependapotamus was derogatory slang for a military wife. This stereotypical wife would stay at home all day, would not clean, and would use their spouse like an ATM. They also apparently resembled the hippopotamus, hence the name. Oh, so Regina must have thought that Naomi was a military spouse who was cheating on her American husband! Naomi started to giggle, she couldn't help it. Naomi was being accused of cheating on her husband, with her husband! Naomi told the woman, "This IS my spouse. I'm actually not part of the military community, and I have a Japanese visa."
Naomi noticed how intensely, "Regina looks at my significant other up and down. The two women behind her apologize, but Regina didn't believe it."
Regina suddenly exclaimed, "No one would voluntarily WANT to live in this little town! Nice lie, but you're not representing the military community. YOU make all of us wives look like cheaters! Who is your husband and what is his rank? Also, I need your dependent ID. MY husband is a high rank, so he'll make sure your husband is aware of your infidelity!"
Whoa. Regina was like an angry cobra in a pastel blouse. She was out to destroy Naomi and Henry, without knowing literally anything about the two of them at all! Also, this was actually a pretty nice small town, Regina made it sound like a revolting pile of garbage! Were Naomi and Regina seriously living in the same place?! What was wrong with this woman, and why couldn't she just go away! Regina whipped out her phone to type down Naomi's supposed information. But she wouldn't like the truth bomb Naomi was about to unleash on this petty mom!
Naomi tried to take all of this antagonistic energy that Regina was serving, and dish it back to her. Naomi exclaimed, "Look, my husband's name is Henry, and he is sitting right here! I'm not going to show you my military ID since I don't have one, and you are not the police! As proof, you can obviously see our wedding bands match, and here's a picture to back that up."
Naomi got out her phone, with a screensaver of her and Henry in traditional Japanese attire on their wedding day. Regina's eyes grew wide at the sight of the picture. At this point, Regina's lackeys had grown disinterested and walked away with their massive strollers full of kids. But Regina stayed behind, she was determined to win this interaction, whatever the cost may turn out to be. Regina screeched, "Why are you in a relationship with HIM?! You should be in a normal relationship and start having a family with American kids!"
Yikes. There was way too much to unpack in that statement, and Naomi was not a licensed therapist. Frankly, she didn't have any of the patience a therapist might in the face of such an objectively awful person. Regina continued to spout of some more shockingly prejudiced statements, and Henry quietly motioned for Naomi to go. They both needed to get out of there before Regina continued to transform into a disgusting rage monster. But before they left, Naomi had to try and vanquish the mighty beast known as Regina. Naomi exclaimed, "STOP! What you're saying is extremely offensive. I was part of the military community myself some years ago, and what you're doing is against spousal conduct."
Regina merely smirked at this half-hearted attempt at a rebuttal. Regina glowered at Naomi and told her, "Go ahead and tell people what I did then! My high-ranking husband will make sure everything I said is swept under the rug, no matter what happens. You can't touch me."
First of all, Regina mentioned her husband's specific ranking, which to Naomi's knowledge, was not actually very high at all. Regina was just full of hot air, and Naomi knew exactly how to permanently knock her down once and for all. Naomi couldn't believe how petty she was about to get, but it was more than necessary at this point.
Now keep in mind, the U.S. military base in this town was very small. If someone even burped at the wrong time, news about it would spread amongst the wives like wildfire. Naomi made an effort to "run into" her friend that afternoon, who worked at the base. Naomi's friend was well known for being the event coordinator for any social events around those on the military base. Naomi spilled everything to her friend. and made it especially clear how horrified her husband had been at all of these insane accusations. Naomi's friend knew exactly who Regina was. She told Naomi, "Regina just arrived here a couple of months ago, and she is already causing problems with rumors and drama. Looks like she's prejudiced too! I'll make sure what she told you will be passed on."
And Naomi's friend seemed to take care of everything. About six months passed, and Naomi and Henry didn't hear anything more from that wicked Regina. Seriously, how is it that a grown woman could be more dramatic and petty than the bratty teenagers Naomi went to high school with?! Finally, Naomi got an update on just what happened to Regina. Wow. Just wow. I can only imagine how satisfying it was to hear this news firsthand. Naomi ran into her friend again, and her friend dropped what could quite possibly be the greatest gossip bombshell ever dropped on a person.
Naomi's friend told a very eager Naomi, "I told my boss that there was a person who was threatening civilians and asking for IDs, which isn't allowed for someone with her status. My boss was extremely interested after I told him it was Regina, because she was scheduled for a job interview in my department! I suggested that we check out Regina's social media pages to verify her past behavior, because we won't tolerate prejudice of any kind. What Regina publicly wrote was beyond shocking. There were so many colorful slurs! She used her husband's military ranking to threaten other! She made it very clear that she wanted to see the small town she lived in burned to the ground. She also wrote 'Why would anyone want to learn Japanese, since it sounds terrible?!'"
Naomi's friend continued this bombshell of a story. "My boss and I printed some of the more extreme things she posted online, and we still invited her to the interview. Oh, and did I mention that my boss is Japanese?! Regina comes into the interview, which I sat in on. After some routine questions, my boss pulls out her posts and asks her point-blank about them. Regina was adamant that someone must have hacked into her account, despite there being years of terrible content. We both thanked her for coming in, and we said that we cannot accept an employee with this sort of conduct!"
Naomi couldn't believe what she was hearing. Regina got exactly what she deserved for being so awful! But the story didn't end there. Naomi's friend mentioned, "As far as I know, Regina is still unemployed. Some military spouses found her social media not long after the interview, and it was shared amongst all the departments. No one will even touch her job application now."
Naomi desperately tried to pick up her jaw off of the ground. "So all of this was discovered because I told you about her accusations?" Naomi inquired.
Then Naomi's friend saved what was ultimately the best detail for the very last.
Naomi's friend wholeheartedly exclaimed, "Oh yes! Also, she cheated on her own husband a few months ago!"
It's like everything Regina blamed Naomi for was something she had secretly done herself. Regina was the biggest dependapotamus of them all, and now all of her actions had been made public! Naomi couldn't imagine better news. At long last, this truly evil person was completely eviscerated by the small town she had been so hateful towards online. Regina's life could have been saved from being completely demolished, if she had only minded her own business that fateful day with Naomi and Henry. But was this the best method to put a stop to Regina's scheming? Did Naomi get too petty by taking control of the gossip, or was this the only way to save herself and her husband? I imagine that Naomi and her husband laughed very heartily about all of this news over dinner that night. So let us know how you would have handled this sort of situation! And watch out for military spouses, but only if they give off a major Regina vibe!