I think I've just appointed someone my nemesis.
This wasn't an entirely willed decision--I've tried to be friends with the person in question, and although our relationship has always been somewhat vexed, it's only recently that I've begun to feel that Nemesis doesn't actually much like or respect me. Still, I resisted fully believing this: maybe I was misreading; maybe I was being overly sensitive; maybe it was my own insecurity talking.
So after some months of muttering under my breath and making vaguely resentful remarks whenever s/he came up in conversation, I decided that I needed to just get over myself already: Nemesis and I have personal and professional reasons to get along, and s/he even seems like someone whose company I might enjoy, had I not constructed this narrative of mysterious and ungrounded dislike.
So when an opportunity presented itself, I made an overture. It was a friendly, professional gesture, one that demanded virtually nothing of Nemesis and that left open any number of ways to remain cheerfully noncommittal or to graciously opt out--any number of ways, in other words, to affirm that s/he assigned some minimal value to our relationship.
Needless to say, Nemesis did not take the gracious way out.
So, really: I'm done here. It's easier to write this person off and declare him/her my nemesis than it is to keep trying to develop our relationship or to worry about the whys and wherefores.
Maybe that's an immature response; I don't know. But I do know that it's a bad idea to go around randomly making enemies of people. I also know that this behavior is entirely typical of Nemesis. One can hope that what goes around comes around or that Nemesis will eventually explode into professional flames. . . but it's more likely that I'll have to deal with this person for the rest of my life.
Damn. Where are those awesome superpowers and/or accessories--invisible plane, magic lasso, whatever--when I really need them?